For some reason, I'm unable to cycle alongside major roads or highways without battling the unreasonable fear that I will be struck by a flying hubcap. In my imagined calamity, a hubcap comes loose from a fast-moving wheel and flies Frisbee-like at incalculable speed until in makes sudden, fatal contact with my face.
I'm at least half serious about this. When I lived in New Mexico, I heard of a friend of friends who was nearly decapitated by a cast-off hubcap while riding as a passenger in a car. The image stuck with me and still creeps me out today.
So, when riding to Davis alongside I-80, I can't shake the feeling that there is a hubcap out there with my name on it, waiting for the ride moment to slice through the Cyclone fence and knock me off my bike.
Crazy, right? Irrational, ridiculous fear. Could never happen.
Uh, no. Not so crazy. Look at this. Look what was waiting for me on the bike trail the other day. That's right, a damn hubcap. And how do you suppose it got there? That's Highway 160 in the background, some 40 feet elevated from the ground.
Clearly, somebody in a Taurus hit a pothole and the hubcap went spinning, flying, careening down the highway. It hit a bump of its own and became airborne, clearing the guardrail and concrete wall and flying onto the bike trail below.
Here is Satan's Frisbee up close.