I’m becoming slightly worried by the fact that I’m literally becoming known around town, and the cycling community, as Mars Girl in lieu of my real name. You might be thinking, “Is that not what you want? You’ve got vanity plates with that name? Your email address, cell phone screen’s banner, and blog all reference ‘Mars Girl.’ What are you complaining about?”
Well, I’m not complaining, really. I’m slightly bemused. I’m only worried when I consider how people might perceive my mental state. Which has never been a worry, really, because I’d rather be known as eccentric than mainstream. In my mind, eccentric equates to “exciting” while mainstream equates to “boring.” So while eccentric has some negative connotations to it (i.e., “slightly off her rocker”), it’s better than being known as “stick in the mud.”
I bring this up because I’ve been to my favorite bicycle shop, Century Cycles in Peninsula, three times in the last two weeks for various reasons and, oddly enough, have found myself referred to as Mars Girl by the employees.
The first time, a few weeks ago, I was in there to buy a pair of winter bike leggings when I’d received a 15% off clothing coupon from them. After I completed my transaction, the guy working the register that day (I believe it was Kevin?), asked, “Are you Mars Girl?”
I had to stifle my shock. He explained that my blog occasionally comes up on a Google alert he set up to locate articles with the words “cycling” and “Ohio” in them. It sure made me rethink, briefly, some of the things I write about on this blog (not all of them cycling related). Again, the fear of being deemed a little unstable by people I see IRL (in real life).
So, I was in Century Cycles again this afternoon–this time, to pick up a second Giant jersey, which is on sale right now, for Michael. Brent was there today and as he took down my phone number (because he had to retrieve the jersey in the appropriate size from another store) he asked me to confirm the first letter of my last name. After I told him, he smiled and said, “Well, we usually refer to you as Mars Girl.”
Who knew I’d gain such notoriety using a pseudonym? It’s like I have this alter ego. Like Clark Kent and Superman, I’m Heidi E and Mars Girl! I have to be sure that Mars Girl does not partake in any nefarious activities to ruin her superhero reputation. Keep her away from the wine and the Dortmunder Gold, please!
If I’m a superhero, what is my power? Hmmm…. Please no references to the pen being mightier than the sword. Or the keyboard being deadlier than the… um… gun?
But seriously, all, I’m both baffled and humbled by this newfound celebrity. Really, I am. I’m just a cycling geek/ski enthusiast/red wine aficionado/world traveler/lover of life who enjoys hearing herself talk by writing about her passions (for everything, as my banner proclaims). I’d probably continue to write even if no one read a single word. I can’t stop myself. Maybe it is my super power…
Well. The vanity plates probably help gain recognition. So it doesn’t mean I’m known because of my blog. I’m just known because I’m Mars Girl, I guess. Maybe if I do ever publish something, I should write under that moniker.