Author Topic: A ride to remember


The Haunting
« Reply #10 on: October 31, 2023 »
I was out for a spin, thinking about where I was going and where I had crossposted where I had been, when from behind there came a rattle, the sound of bones upon a saddle; a skeleton was following me, no flesh as far as I could see.

This was more than a little alarming, his extra toothy grin not my idea of charming. Despite the lack of muscle tone, he met my pace, let out a moan.

"Hold up," he said, "I haven't lungs, or for that matter throat or tongue. Suspend, dear chap, your disbelief, or we shall crash and come to grief."

I try to heed good advice, even when the source ain't nice. No coward did my mother raise – I shook myself out of my daze. We braked down to conversational pace. After all, it wasn't a race. For if it were, he'd beaten me to where I sooner or later will be.

He claimed to be the ghost of forum past: "Yes, the one that didn't last." Talk about your forumite spotting. Normally they're fresh; he hadn't ceased rotting. "Why did the skeleton cross the road?" He riddled me as if I didn't already know.

We chatted about people now forever an arm's length away. And that's where we left it, so that's where it lay.


  • .
  • Frankie D Rules
Infamy: it’s a date
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2023 »
The following diary entry of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, dated April 1, 1921 (the year he lost the use of his legs), was recently unearthed by a scholar who wishes to remain anonymous.

The strain with Eleanor is in danger of becoming public. Mother insisted we try a tandem, claiming it salubrious to her own marital woes. I nearly countered that pappa's removal of himself into the hereafter had been equally beneficial, but held my tongue. In any event, I borrowed a Schwinn Super Dooper from cousin Theo[1] and approached Norrie.

We nearly didn't even mount the bike, as she insisted on captaining. She wouldn't even desist when I warned her that a member of the press might be hiding in the bushes, and the resulting furor about who "wore the pants" in the family could scupper my chances of attaining higher office. For the umpteenth time she launched into a harangue on the 19th Amendment, even though the damned thing passed last year (mostly because of the strike[2]), and as far as I could tell had nothing to do with our impasse.

We finally flipped for it, she have chosen Lady Liberty/heads, I tails. Thank God I won. I even agreed to two out of three, like a gentleman.

It was with much grumbling that she took what she insisted on calling the inferior position, despite my assurance that stokers are a most vital part of any tandemming effort, and being a captain is a thankless task. It was perhaps a mistake for me to then attempt levity by joking about her being the woman behind the man, a quip which risked condemning me to a "back seat driver" for the entirety of the ride.

Why mother thought this would help was entirely beyond me. Norrie was ready to quit before we'd even made it all the way down the driveway, which we never left as it is quite long. I have a sneaking suspicion she finally settled down when the benefits of the rather hard saddle became apparent.

Presently we happened upon another couple, also on bicycles, enviably separate. This triggered her competitive instinct; she insisted we race them. Suddenly my pedals felt boosted as if by a steam engine. My other half has a powerful stroke, I'll give her that.

We swiftly passed the woman, who appeared to wink at me.[3] The man did not give in so easily. After a few miles he finally flagged and we drew abreast, whereupon Norrie leaned into him. Instinctively I did the same, and together we forced him off the road into the ditch. Teamwork!

I wanted to turn around and check on him, but she was so energised by the victory that she insisted we continue with alacrity to the gatehouse. Upon our arrival she leapt off the saddle and onto me, our first recorded quickie in 16 years of marriage, date nights having always required patient negotiation.

Note to self: must thank mother.

1. Fifth cousin Theodore Roosevelt had actually been dead for two years at this point.

2. He's referring to the sex strike, since expunged from history books. Women en masse refused conjugal relations, or at least vowed to stop wearing corsets, until granted suffrage. This was also the first appearance of the 'pussyhat', though good luck finding any pictures in the national archives.

3. Lorena Hickok, as it happens.

More on presidents and bicycles here and here.