When coming to grips with the reality of the loss of air pressure, a rider goes through distinct stages.
1. DENIAL: Maybe my tire always pooched out like that. Do things really feel bouncy and squishy or am I just imagining it? I'll hit a little bump and see if tire feels firm.
2. ANGER: %$#%$#!!! I don't have time for this! What did I do to deserve it?! It's not fair!
3. BARGAINING: Maybe I can make it the rest of the way to work if I sit forward, avoid major bumps and think pure thoughts.
4. DEPRESSION: No, it's definitely coming down to the rim. Crap! So much for this ride...Oh maaaann! And I ate a big breakfast, too.
5. ACCEPTANCE: I guess I'll pull off here and change the tube...
Today's flat tire, sponsored by the Bottle Breaking Idiots of America, cost me the whole commute. I was too close to home and too low on time to justify continuing on 50 psi with a questionable spare tube and a hole in the tire casing. With proper medical attention I might keep using the tire, but it will require some critical examination and a sturdy patch. So now I'm hoping the afternoon weather lives up to the wet, windy forecast so I don't feel bad for having to drive.
In an additional steaming blob of irony, today's parts shipment included my new Lezyne mini-pump, which I know would get the tire up to at least 85 psi with relative ease. I'm not one to lightly relinquish the old Silca, but the Lezyne I tested impressed me enough that I ordered the high pressure version for road use and the high volume version for the MTB commuter. They also make a mini folding floor pump that sounds like just the thing for loaded touring if you're obsessive about tire pressure.