Commuting on a bike.
Sometimes it's a mirror I'd rather not see.
Think about it. There's the gear collecting and bundling: heavy tights, thick wool socks, wool sweater, windproof jacket, two pairs of gloves, hat, and facemask. Then there's the routine of firing up a cluster of front and rear LEDs that could distract low-flying air traffic. Then there's the ride: two miles at about 10 miles per hour, picking through slush stalagmites, plow droppings, and black ice.
Twenty-five minutes of preparation for fifteen minutes of misery.
Then I have to peel all those layers off again so I can change into work clothes and sit in a cube for eight hours.
Then, I do it all over again in reverse.
Without special studded tires -- at about $50 a pop for the heaviest, most sluggish-feeling rubber you'll ever turn over -- it probably wouldn't even be possible. And let's not even talk about gunked up bearings. Crusty chains. Frames eaten out from the inside by salt and rust. Frozen cables. Brakes that barely qualify as a cruel joke thanks to ice-glazed rims.
People ask me why I do it, and I honestly don't have an answer. I just shrug.