As many of you know, we have this weekly thing called the "Wednesday Night Ride." Innocent enough: show up at the Lake Harriet Bandshell (or more accurately, the picnic tables just north of, but in case of two feet of snow, just mingle on the adjacent bike path) between 9:30 - 10:00 pm with your bike. Bring some refreshments, and dress appropriately. Don't forget the all-important VAPOR BARRIER! Last night a six-pack of soul riders showed up for the bacchanal. 5 of 6 were wearing blue jackets, like some sort of bad outtake from Queer Eye for the Bike Guy. Like some single speed Johnny Cash, the Wrexican
was the lone dissenter, wearing standard issue black. All Metal, all the time!
We rolled away from Harriet, planning to ride sidewalks all the way across town to the Seward neighborhood to check the latest Pizza Luce, recently opened at 22nd & Franklin. But when the ride is being led by Gnarly Factory Pro, and includes Tower of Brauer, the Bryn Mawr Borracho, Chrisdemeanor, and Zito, along with the aforementioned Wrexican, the route is sure to be anything but direct. Plenty of powder, curb jumps, and sidewalk singletrack gave way to our charge before our first pitstop at Powderhorn Park. We bombed the sledding hill to the delight of onlookers, then gathered inside the boards on the hockey rink. A six-up drag race from one end to the other on slick-as-snot ice is generally not a good idea, but the Mafia is known to throw caution to the wind. After several motos, and several contusions, the final round had us race to one end, turn around and return to the opposite side exit. Chrisdemeanor had the jump, but left the door open and felt the wrath of the Kona Unit at the finish. A resounding thump was all I heard, possibly brought on by him having only one brake on the D.i.S.S., a front brake!
Climbing out of the park, I led the goons down the sidewalk. Gene gave the obligatory tire buzz so I gassed it to get a little gap. When he came back with the buzzing I brake checked hard. Some grinding noises ensued, then in the corner of my eye I saw his body catapult into the snow like a bag of flour. Truly a pleasant sight. We finally made it to Seward Luce, located in an old fire station that had been converted to offices. It's much smaller than their other locations; our six bodies all but filled the bar. We enjoyed $2 PBR's while writing valentine's cards to our favorite friends. At closing time, our server Dana loaded us up with free slices, and a drunk girl at the bar asked if we all worked for the same company, because "what's up with all the blue coats?"
The Southside Softies had to head for home, but BrauerPower, Zito, and myself were still thirsty, so we decided to make it a Luce Tour, and raced down Franklin to lower Ho Chi Minh, and onto Downtown Luce for last call. Like deja vu, more PBR's were in front of us, capped off with a nice shot of Jameson's. Zito then made the mistake of telling us he had a 6 pack in his fridge, and a brief ride later we were enjoying the Champagne of Beers at the 117 loft. BrauerPower & I left sometime after 3 am, which is keeping in accordance with the strict bylaws of the Thursday Morning Ride. I cranked the Ipod and was home in bed before the second song was over. Join us next week as we do it all over again...