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Naomi  The Biking Life

 by: Naomi Bloom  11/1/2002

An Early Letter to Santa

Santa Baby, a Juliana Superlight, Duke Blue.
I've been an awfully good girl, Santa Baby
And hurry down the chimney tonight.

(Please feel free to hum along. It's guaranteed to install the entire Eartha Kitt rendition, sultry phrasing and all, firmly in your mind all through your next ride! It certainly did in mine. But I digress.)

I do realize that it's not quite Santa time yet. But holiday hype started appearing in the stores immediately after Halloween. Besides, Chanukah (some spell it Hanukkah) starts the night after Thanksgiving this year. So I thought I'd better get my holiday wish list together ASAP. Hence my letter to the jolly old elf:

Dear, darling, sweet, handsome, charming Santa Claus:
I know you haven't heard from me for many, many years. (Too many to mention, you understand. I won't reveal your age, Santa, if you won't reveal mine.) But this year I really need your help. You see my Significant Other and I have this agreement: No cycling stuff for holiday gifts this year. So who else is there to rely on for the bike swag I so fiercely covet? Only you, my wonderful Kris (may I call you Kris?), can possibly come through for me this year.

Now about that Juliana mountain bike. My old hardtail was a technical marvel in its day -- the "pinnacle" of woman-specific design, you might say. But now it's so clunky and heavy (and rigid) that I've relegated it to the position of my official "cruiser" bike. This year I'm drooling over what Santa Cruz Bicycles has come up with for female off-roaders like me. I'm convinced it's the only way I can get back out on the single-track without painful injury and/or embarrassment. So please, Krissy darlin', just leave one (size Medium) under the tree for me.

Santa Baby, slip some extras under the tree, for me
Santa Baby, I've been an awfully good girl, you see.

I really could use just a few more fashionable accessories, Santa dear. Here are some suggestions:

  • A pair of Hind Ul tra Drylete knickers to keep my knees from knockin' on long winter rides
  • A pair of Toe Jam mers to keep my tootsies toasty on long winter rides
  • A DryLete undershirt, if they still make them, to keep the rest of me toasty on long winter rides (maybe you can score one in my size from Sierra Trading Post)
  • An itty-bitty Adventure Cyclist's Piggy Pack in screaming yellow (wish you could see a picture!)
  • The 2000, 2001 and 2002 Tour de France videos so I can while away those rainy no-ride days in a blaze o' glory
  • A Lance Armstrong poster ( this one will do nicely)

Come and stuff my stocking so red
With some treats while I snooze in bed
I really do believe in you
Let's see if you believe in me

Of course, dear Santa, you won't forget the stocking stuffers, will you? Some little things, like new lycra covers for the saddles on all five of my bikes (including that new Juli you're dropping off). Of course, I really want them to be fashionably color-coordinated with each bike's color and not to clash too horribly with the clothes I wear. My old riding buddy Diane Friedman of Nucleus Fast Fashion makes a great selection. If anyone can find her stuff on the Web, you can Santa, but not even Google could sniff it out. So just drop by The Bicycle Outfitter on your way over and pick up half a dozen cute ones.

Also, could you see your way to stocking (pun intended) me up with some tasty goodies for quick energy on the bike? I love the new Luna Bars, especially Chocolate Peppermint Stick and Peanut Butter 'N Jelly. And several Clif Bar's "Ice" Cool Mint Chocolate and Orange Chocolate Chill wouldn't hurt either.

While you're stuffing that stocking, Santa, how about slipping in some tickets to ride? I'm talking about airline tickets and paid-up itinerary for a dream cycling vacation. Like maybe Bicycle Adventure Club's June Provence tour. Or their Trans-France tour -- what an adventure for une cycliste americaine qui parle bien francais!

Or better yet, how about a self-guided tour from DiscoverFrance.com or Randonee Tours? That would surely be the most memorable holiday gift of all time, Santa sweetheart!

Up to now I've been a selfish girl
Now it's time for me to give others a whirl
Santa, please, let's not leave out
The people who work for us; they need some clout

I admit I've been a bit selfish, Santa, asking only for presents for myself. But there are others who would especially benefit from your generosity at this time of year. So I'd like to ask if you could please see your way to lending a helping hand (in the form of donations, either cash or equipment) to some of these great folks:

  • Marilyn Price's Trips for Kids has gone national and needs your kid-friendly sponsorship now more than ever.
  • Bikes Not Bombs is still making things happen in the Boston area and South America. Help 'em out, willya?
  • They don't seem to have a Web site, but Sacred Heart Church in San Jose, in partnership with Alamaden Cycle Touring Club, runs a Bicycle Recycling Program that could put any used bikes, components and/or accessories to good use. It's easy to find them; just drop your donations down the chimney at the Schallau's in San Jose.

And while you're at it, Santa, I'm also asking for a great big bundle of good old-fashioned political "influence" for the following organizations:

  • The League of American Bicyclists
  • America Bikes
  • The California Bicycle Coalition
  • Peninsula Bicycle & Pedestrian Coalition, "the new voice for bicyclists and pedestrians of San Mateo County"
  • Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition
  • The California Organization of Bicycling Organizations, aka CABO (remember, Santa, I'm a former District Rep)
  • REBAC, the SF Bay Area's regional bicycle advocacy group

That's about it, Santa. I really have been a good girl, you know. I always stop at red lights (never mind about those stop signs). I never ride on the sidewalk or the wrong side of the street. And I always wear my helmet.

I even wrote this note to you so I could give my readers some ideas about gifts for their fellow cyclists and friends. Just look at all the links I've provided! (Of course, they could always rely on Velo Gear but where's the imagination in that?)

Think of all the fun I've missed
Think of all the rides on my to-do list
Next year, Santa, I'll be even better
If you just answer this holiday letter!

Your humble BikeWriter,

P.S. Santa, please give lots of extra warmth, love and understanding to Ed Burke's wife and little ones this year. They miss him. We all do, even if we never met him but only read his books and articles. Thanks.

Naomi can be reached at naomibloom@earthlink.net

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