|Waiting on 6:15|
Please disregard everything I said last week about HL. In truth, HL is either there or he is not. It's entirely a binary paradigm: 1 or 0, on or off, there or not there. Whatever happened in the fog last week was evidently some freakish one-off occurrence having more to do with HL's self-preservation than any kind, grandfatherly aspect of his personality. I'm sure the pretty little girl and the fish were cardboard cutouts used to make him appear human in some political advertisement back when he ran for office.
HL started attacking in the pitch dark as we passed below the Huey P. Long Bridge. So it was another case of recklessly bounding westward listening to cyclists screaming about oncoming hazards, seen and unseen. One good development of late is that B. Baum, who has always been plenty strong, is becoming a wiser cyclist. He has learned to let HL hang off the front, and no amount of sneering from HL can entice Baum to play HL's game. After some pouting and sneering and a few more attacks, HL usually tries to separate the group by blocking part of the line and then taking off. That ploy failed today, too. With HL largely neutralized, the ride to Ormond was pleasant once I could see where I was heading.
It was a fairly large group today. Once Vega got near the other end, we were about 18 riders, and I was looking forward to a nice trip home. I had just settled in on Rich's wheel as we slow-rolled eastward below the Luling Bridge when I heard Rich emit a low, elongated groan: UhOooooh. Two of the young Turks in orange had chased us out and were now turning with us. Playmates for HL.
I could have written this script yesterday: One orange kit rolls off the front, HL and Baum can't help themselves, we chase for miles. We finally catch him, and the other orange kit attacks. By the country club there were no less than four groups. Rich, Randy and I ended up riding in together.