The Friday Cyclotouriste

a geo-photoblog chronicling my "excursions velo"

On the Road……Fighting shadenfreude pedaling toward Pt. Bonita

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What a beautiful, clear winter day! The image below is a popular picture taking spot just where the road reaches a plateau (below Hawk Hill) and before it plummets back down to the sea.

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The Park Service made some major infrastructure “improvements” along Conzelman Rd., expanding parking and creating new scenic vistas and pullouts. Now, more people driving up here in cars can enjoy the scenery, but my sense is there’s more traffic and delays. On this day, cars were lining up and I was sometimes overtaking vehicles on the uphill!

I have to admit, it was a rich, satisfying feeling passing snarled cars while pedaling uphill on my bicycle. The Germans, I believe, have a word for this sense of delight in the misfortune of others: they call it Schadenfreude. Studies have shown the human brain’s reward centers are activated in these schedenfreude-like situations, which confirms my own experience.

For the record, I’m not proud of this at all — humility after all is one of my velosophic tenets — but noticing unconscious negative habits, and then slowly perfecting oneself is what life is all about.

Written by fridaycyclotouriste

January 5th, 2013 at 8:17 am

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