Tip #2: Pick up after yourself.
Dear Mountain Biker Dude,
You left two soaking wet carpets behind at 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo. I tried to find you on Facebook, but I can’t remember your name, and it turns out there are a lot of males who race bikes on Facebook. So I’m leaving you a message here.
I’m curious about this situation. Did you expect Todd Sadow to pick up your garbage for you? I don’t know him very well, but he doesn’t strike me as the kind of person who likes picking up other people’s trash. If you didn’t expect Todd to pick up your wet carpets, then I’m assuming you expected I would do it? This also doesn’t make sense to me, as you were not very nice to me when you setup your camp next to us. In fact, I called you a not very nice name behind your back – I’m sorry for that, I shouldn’t have done that. I’m working on not reacting in the face of sexism. I know from conflict resolution courses I’ve taken that reacting in the moment is usually the wrong way to handle conflict. Responding – after having some time to reflect on the situation – is usually a better tactic.
Maybe I read too much sexism into the situation, and you were in fact intentionally littering. Perhaps this is what you were thinking: you’d raced your bike for 24 hours without stopping – you were exhausted and deserved a break, you were entitled to not pick up after yourself. Unfortunately, this logic doesn’t really work, because most of us at the event were up all night racing too. Can you imagine what 24 Hour Town would look like if none of us picked up our wet carpets? Here’s the link to the Leave No Trace website. I hope you read up on Leave No Trace before the next time you ride or race your bike in our beautiful Arizona desert.
P.S. One more question. If you had been camped next to the Men’s Solo winner, would you have acted differently? Would you have left your trash next to his site?