24 September 2012
The Cyborg who Came in From the Cold!
Early morning Canberra was shrouded in a fine layer of white mist and frost, lending it an ill-deserved appearance of purity. This still, tranquil morning was interrupted by the far-from-pure Cyborg (who had long-since lost the feeling in his fingers) racing along a firetrail on his commute to work. Fortunately he was riding his dual suspension sporty SuperFly, which danced over the rough terrain with ease and required no further braking or gearing (and hence no fingers). This was more than just any early morning ride; the Cyborg wasn’t freezing in some attempt to retain his youth. No, this was “All Dirt Day”, a new form of training the Cyborg had taken up in recent months.
On all dirt day, the Cyborg has to ride to work on as much dirt as possible - preferably with a big hill or two thrown in for good measure. Fortunately, he lived in the Bush Capital, where every suburb backs onto a reserve, and many reserves are joined by fire trail (and all of them have hills!) The amount of concrete and bitumen in his 10km commute could be measured in terms of hundreds of metres. This was giving the Cyborg lots of regular riding practice.
And this practice had been paying dividends, as he cooly sped down the firetrail, hopping ruts, rocks and roots (after all, everyone should practice their three R’s!) It had translated into some good race results too; knocking off the Capital Punishment in just over three hours, and the Husky in just under. His skills and confidence in the field were progressing well, he was holding his own in the fray; even moving up in the pack during events. (No, the Cyborg doesn’t call them races, people who win - or even podium - call them races. The Cyborg calls them events because, sad as it may be, mountain bike events are rapidly becoming the Cyborg’s social calendar.) He was actually becoming a competent rider, which is probably why M had called him in from the cold for a meeting.
It was during this little reverie, with the Cyborg lost in the trail, pondering the possibilities of the meeting, that he had the Living Daylights scared out of him. Two vicious, barking, snarling dogs were running flat out up the fire trail towards him; barreling along like oncoming Thunderballs. The debonair Cyborg, however, never lost his cool; rather he got out of the saddle and picked up the pace, despite the growling, gnashing dogs, rushing to close the gap between them. Faster and faster they raced towards each other until the Cyborg’s wheel was but a metre from the canine’s canines. In a deft maneuver, the Cyborg lifted his front wheel, then scooped the pedals with his feet to pick the rear off the ground, bunny-hopping clear of the lead dog. As the bike came back down for a soft landing, the Cyborg gently locked on the front brakes, to bring the still airborne rear wheel around just in time to slap the second terror away.*
Which is just as well, for we all know those corgis can be vicious things! After all, “Corgi” is Welsh for Blue Heeler. True story, they’re Welsh cattle dogs. Which, when you think about it, is a bit of a worry - does that mean they confused the Cyborg with a cow?
Alert, but not alarmed, the Cyborg sped on down the hill, easily outrunning and distancing himself from the confused canines, and in no time at all (and without any further incident) arrived at TriHards Global Headquarters for his meeting with M. After a quick shower and change the Cyborg opened the door to M’s anteroom and tossed his bike helmet onto the hat rack, where it landed perfectly - certainly not just bouncing off to land on the floor with a loud clatter.
“I always like your helmet on a stick trick, Cyborg,” Miss BeerMiddy greeted, having long ago given up on using double-entendres with the Cyborg, who required the subtlety of a sledgehammer to get a hint.
“Miss BeerMiddy, it’s a great morning for a ride - I don’t see your helmet,” he replied, proving her theory.
“Well, you know, Cyborg, I do love a good ride; but it’s a bit cold out. Perhaps some hotter, indoors activities would be more fun?”
“By golly, you’re right Miss BeerMiddy - and do I have the contraption for you! A Kurt Kinetic Trainer!”
“Me, getting all hot and sweaty with a machine indoors - that would have to be For Your Eyes Only, Cyborg; but I’m sure we could - ”
The intercom interrupted them at that very moment, with M’s voice booming through the room, “Don’t bother trying to flirt with Cyborg, Miss BeerMiddy, you know he just doesn’t get it. Send him in will you.”
“I’m sure it’d be A View to a Kill, Miss BeerMiddy. Duty Calls.”, and he disappeared into M’s office.
Stay Tuned: Cyborg’s Adventures continue in Part 2: 00 Cyborg