Rants on Cycling and on Life


a little help here

I am trying to write an article for SPOKES magazine highlighting some of the top mountainbike races in the Mid-Atlantic region...

comment or email me with a list of two or three
along with a reason why

appreciate it



reed before he rushes for the west

reed of
reed of laser courier
soon to be
reed of project nemisis

pink bike

reed associated with
reed soon to longer associated with laser courier
reed soon to be associated with project nemisis
turned me onto

generosity... superstition... dangerous ground

for many people this is a very religious time of year
not sure how the Easter Bunny fits into all of this
but I can not say no to the candy

during this time of year I have recieved a number of cards from various relatives
there are certain relatives that send me cards around the time of religious holidays
often these cards contain a message that a mass was said in my honor or that a chicken was given to a family under my name
I am all for the chicken as I am a big fan of chicken
but the mass thing always leaves me feeling a little empty

as I am not religious myself
like to think of myself as spiritual
still searching
still trying to figure it all out
but most definitely not a big joiner for this organized religion thing
so this mass said in my name always hits me as a little odd

would it work for me to donate money in their name to my favorite charities?

if I were to send money to my organizations of interest as a gift to them
how would they respond?
Dear Grandma-
A donation has been made in your name to the International Mountain Bike Association.
Have a Nice Holiday
Happy Trails
your loving grandson
Dear Uncle Joe (i am not sure i have an uncle joe)
Happy Holidays!
This holiday season a gift has been given to the people of the Mid-Atlantic Off Road Enthusiasts!
Happy Trails
how would the recipient feel?
more then likely they would have that same vacant feeling that I get when I open the letter from them
a little question of "why?"
a little question of my motivation
a little question of my understanding of them
then the letter would be tossed aside

I am thankful that they are thinking of me
the fact that they feel that this action aids me does please me
but... I think that if they were to donate the money towards an interest that is more towards my liking would make sense
or maybe
just send another chicken
I am not against a family in Central America getting a chicken that they can name Gwadzilla

sometimes I wonder...
does god read my blog?
guess she doesn't have to
as she can read my thoughts
if god can read my thoughts.... I can type anything I want
as she already knows how I really feel
which also elimiates the need for prayer
as she already knows that I am thankful

no need to pray for this lottery ticket to be a winner
she is already reading my mind

some faces and some bikes

some local track stars

racial profiling... stereotyping... prejudgement (prejudice)

all of these terms are interesting
the notion of racial profiling
the idea of stereotyping
the concept of prejudice

our brains are not complex enough to create a file for each and every person on the street
we need to create files and sub files to keep our thoughts organized
these little categorizations make things move more smoothly in our day

we alter our behavior based on the age of the person we are going to interact with
we alter our behavior based on the socio-economic classifcation of who were are going to deal with
we alter our behavior based on the race of the person we are going to encounter
we all do it
we all have to do it
it only makes sense to make certain logical leaps before the interaction begins

racial profiling

is it so wrong?
to a certain degree it is vital
it is vital to our survival
it is vital to our sanity
it is vital to to speed things up

as an urban cyclist I contend with this on a similar level
as I move through the city streets on my bicycle I need to anticipate the actions of the cars that move around me
it is up to me to guess their next move
in my mind there are multiple algorhythms running as I approach each car

I look at the make an model of the car
I look at the condition of the car
there is a glance at the license plate of the car
who is driving the car?
what is that person doing while they are driving?
is that person young or old?
what nationality is that person?
does that person see me?

these are questions that are already loaded into my head
I do not need to slow down and mouth the words
the questions are already being asked over and over again as I float through the city

is it wrong that I anticipate different behavior from different drivers?

the actions of the minature blue haired lady are different then the testosterone filled teenage boy
both can be dangerous
but the set of risks are different
am I wrong for creating stereotypes
for expecting a certain behavior from a specific type

I think not
like a women walking home from a bar late night
the cyclist must think of what they must do to protect themselves
where on the road is most safe for the cyclist?
just as the women walking home must do what she must do to get home safely

these things said...
people respond to me in various ways
I am a bit of a beast of a man
my size, my facial hair, maybe even my choice of clothing
these things cause people to respond to me in in a certain way
if I am in the woods alone people will respond to me one way
if I am in the woods with my dogs people will respond to me another way
if I am in the woods with my two adorable young boys... well... their perception becomes something completely different
this does not offend me
I expect this sort of response

Google News

Google is a powerful tool...
a good tool for knowledge
a good tool for information
a good tool for stalking old girlfriends or potential future restraining orders
GOOGLE NEWS is also powerful
a simple GOOGLE NEWS with the term Bicyclist comes up with a list of recent reports
none of which are good

that said...
we all need to be careful
I need to be careful
as a cyclist it is a little more than looking both ways before we cross the street
we look, we look, then we look again
I try to stay focused
I try to stay alert
sure the sites of the city capture my eye
a glance here
a second look there
must keep my attention on the tasks at hand

eye contact
try to get an idea of the car driver's goals and intention
so much can be told by the idle of the car, the condition of the car, the plates on the car, the hands placement on the steering wheel, and the eyes
always get an idea of the eyes
that way you can see if they have seen you
that way you can see what they are trying to see
chances are.... they have not seen you
anticipate their next move
dodge them
then roll along your merry way
only to prepare yourself for the next set of variables

DC Filmfest

DC Filmfest
the tiger lycra tights remind me of Jim Rapp
Jim aka Featherhead along with his girlfriend made and sold some very original/outrageous shorts and tights in the 80's
it is no secret... Featherhead sold other things
what ever happened to Jim Rapp?


depression is like a leak in the roof

depression is like a leak in the roof
when the sun is shinning there is no concern for that leak in the roof
the sun shines the roof exists as if there is no leak
so no care is taken to repair this leak in the roof

then the rain comes
as they say.... when it rains it pours
water comes pouring through the leak in the roof
you can not fix a leaky roof while water is pouring through

so you deal with it
buckets to catch the dripping water
towels to mop up the water on the floor
there may be some bitching and moaning about the leak in the roof
eventually the sun comes out again

again the leak in the roof is ignored
the sun is out... why concern yourself with a leaky roof while the sun is out
until it rains again

the revolution will not be motorized



IF Club

stolen from ifjeff

not a bike... but it has wheels

not much to be said
there is a notion that there will always be poor
but... it is hard to think about us trying to fix the problems in Iraq
while we have a country filled with its own set of problems
we are trying to shove democracy down their throats
I wonder.... do we live in a democracy?

I would love to see this country behave like the world leader it claims to be
lead through example
feed our poor
education for all
take care of our old
and all those other things that should be basic in our world

everyone has a story....
I wonder what this woman's story is
life is hard with a full time job and a house
I can not imagine what this woman goes through each day


we all deal with stress
some people manage stress better than others
in our lives we have to learn to cope with stress
at home with our families
at work with our various tasks
in our social interactions
in the games that we play

everyone deals with stress
certainly, some people deal with stress better than others

think of athletes and musicians
just because they are on the professional or elite level does not mean that they do not deal with stress
no... I am sure that most every professional athlete deals with some pre-game jitters... especially when that game will weigh as more than just another win/loss in the record books
these people have learned to channel that energy on game day
instead of letting that energy become a negative and buckling under the pressure
they harness that energy and turn it into a positive and let that energy take them to the next level

certainly Mick Jagger gets a little nervous as he takes the stage at the half time of the Superbowl
just because he has been doing his rock thing for 300 years does not mean that he no longer gets nervous
certainly not.... Mick has learned to control his stress and channel his energy
as crawling into the corner and bitting his nails is not an option
instead he moves about the stage like a rooster doing a mating dance in front of his hens

we all need to keep control of our levels of stress
there are a world of mechanisms that people use to combat stress

here is a VW AD from Germany on YouTube that may lighten your mood
it may offend you
here is a different video also from YouTube of a similar tone
both shared with me from Gibby (who has not kept up on his Internet presence)

another shot of lonnie

I have seen lonnie around for years
many years ago I managed a Big Wheel Bikes location on Capitol Hill
at Eastern Market
we shared a mutual friend who owns a rug store on the hill
our paths crossed from time to time
it had been years since we spoke
I had always known Lonnie to ride a mountainbike
so it was awkward approaching him
but... after my approach
I was glad I had
as we able to talk for a bit
we talked about life as he let me take these pictures
he is a good man
I need to make that trip to the Eastern Market
I could really use some Sandal Wood incense


tired... feels good to be tired

got out of work a few minutes early
by a few minutes I mean a few minutes
it is nice to be on the bike and rolling when the whistle blows
feeling a tad selfish I pointed away from home on the bike
should be pedaling the recently tuned up geared Karate Monkey
instead I am on my well worn Jamis Nova cross bike
a bike with seven speed mountain chain rings on an old and tired 9 speed chain
they have been together so long that they actually get along
although it may be approaching the time to retire them both

feeling the energy of spring I looked at my watch and headed towards Great Falls on the Maryland side
there were visions of the hill dropping into the parking lot at Great Falls
maybe some hill repeats
maybe some deer feeding on the road side at sunset
after a moments calculations I knew that was an option more selfish then intended
to get home that late would merit a phone call or some advanced notice
no time for a phone call
just ride and head home

riding that energy of spring I worked through the congestion of Rush Hour traffic
tried to let it go

tried to take it out of auto pilot
tried to keep the spit in my mouth
tried to keep the hands on the bars
tried to keep my fingers to myself

not just to be civil
but to be safe
in a road rage situation the car is in a much better situation then the bike
sure, a few people got the bird
they deserved it... luckily they were just assholes and not psychopaths as no one hit the brakes and ran me down
that is always a potential next step
it is best to be avoided
need to try to think two steps ahead
need to think
this idiotic knee jerk reaction is a dangerous behavior that has to stop
my actions are not improving the car driver's behavior
these actions are just putting me at greater risk
no one walks away enlightened

I try
I am flawed
I am trying to be a better person
I am trying to be civil
I am trying not to let the uncivil behavior of others bring me down to an uncivilized level

the traffic thins as I exit M Street, past Key Bridge, onto Resivior, up the hill to MacArther Blvd
it has been too long since the last time I rode this stretch of road
I smile as I look at the water in the resivior
my mind wanders as I dream about that green space being opened to mountainbiking around the resivior
no I do not know how to spell reservior
spelling has never been a strength

riding out of the door zone towards the right side of the lane I move at a good clip
more muscle then rhythm
I am not that fit and not that strong so I am working hard for what I am doing
lucky for me there are no cyclist passing me to show how humble my efforts are
no... a few bikes coming the other way
only cars passing me as I cross from DC into Maryland
lots of expensive cars passing fast
one subaru drives behind me almost extra cautiously
then this same subaru drives along side of me
an infant looks out the window as I pace along side of them
there is a roof rack on top of the car
guess daddy is a cyclist

more expensive cars pass
a lexus passes and runs the red light
I run the red light as well
I know the light was red
not sure if they noticed
a few cars pass aggressively
as if to try and make a statement
blood boils
I say words
but I keep these words to myself
I am trying
I am not perfect
if they are so focused on me as so to read my lips
well... then they were passing fast and close only to retake the lane dangerously close
well... then they were trying to teach me a lesson
so maybe the do deserve the names I am calling them
even if these utterances are not going to aid in altering future behavior

at the historic one lane bridge I take a look at my options
the light is red
traffic is still coming
the sidewalk/bike path has just become vacant
perfect timing
a cyclist who I had passed moving parallel on the jumped on my rear wheel
as much as I hate having people drafting off me
I was confident that he would not follow me back onto the road
not due to my pace
but because I could see he was more at home on the bike path

after some confident measure I make my move
a tad sketchy from the follower's perspective
perfectly fine from mine
alhough I know that there are always risks
always re-evaluating the situation
always ready for the next false move
no feathers ruffled from on coming traffic
traffic still waiting for the green light to get onto the one lane bridge
it is all clear

as the timing at the light works out
it is my turn
no need to slow
I accelerate on the road forward and further
rolling through fast is the best move for all involved
as I look towards the bike path I see a woman running
not sure... but it looks like Chris Scott's girlfriend
she is part of the team along with Chris and many others to promote various races including the Shenandoah Mountain 100, a race that I love and I dread
it is a glance
I could be way off base
but the puzzles seem to fit
although I do not know where she lives
so that is a missing piece of the puzzle
maybe it is not chris' girlfriend
either way I saw a pretty girl running

still moving strong but already realizing I went our harder than I am worthy of at this point in my season
along with a little fatigue I got a little stressed about my lack of dirt and lack of fitness
not because I have great expectations of my level of performance
no... because I know it is more fun to race when I am not in pain the whole time
in pain for some of the time is okay... but wishing for a race to end is not the most fun way to race

a glance at my watch and I return to the calculations of my turn around point
it looks like Great Falls would be too far.... well... it might fit
either way.... the excuse is good enough for me to move to the C&O Canal at Brickyard Road for my turn around
it was a good choice
able to drop the speed a bit
able to fatigue my upper body a tad with the hard packed gravel base benieth me
more stress about races to come
already fearing my arms and hands not being ready for the demands of racing
why do I stress?
for the same reason the dog chases the cat
it is my nature to stress and complain

the canal back was worry free
a number of cyclist moved in the direction against me
some familiar faces, forms, and bicycles
in no time at all miles were behind me and I was on the Capitol Crescent Trail back towards Georgetown
there was a brief moment where an old man in retro gear jumped on my rear wheel after a friendly pass
I slowed, I slowed, I slowed
he did not pass
rather than stopping I started back up to speed
not looking to try and fail to shake a many who got his Fuji with a discount from AARP I turn around as we are about to reach speed
do not draft
it is drafting in a race
it is tailgating on the path
give me some space
thank you

he agrees
he gives me some space
he drops it a gear and pulls ahead
I am not sure
but I do not go for what could be a challenge
no desire to play cat and mouse

his pace was good enough for me to drift behind him 10 or 20 feet

the trail fed onto K Street
I made a pass and left him behind
not because of my great speed
more than likely he was looking to turn it around

from K Street onto the bike path of Rock Creek Park
some very familiar asphalt
there are spring time trail users doing ignorant trail user things
dogs on leashes crossing the trail
people walking 5 a breast looking straight down at their feet
cars doubling the speed limit on the street four lanes wide just to my right

just before the tunnel the path gets thin as it crosses over the creek
it is essentially a one lane bike path
I yeild for the two very slow joggers that are on the bridge as I approach
impatiently I mouth to myself... come on.... come on..... come on as I stomp me feet
they thank me for waiting
I feel like a jerk for my impatience
I am a nearly halfway across the bridge when an idiot trail user enters the bridge
my defused anger returns
it is not hard for me to get frustrated with interacting with people at times
I keep pace
he hardly moves to the side as I zip past
I mention something about a one lane bridge as I pass
I am sure he did not hear me

through the tunnel rather than left on the path
in the classic urban asshole way a car honks at me while I ride the sidewalk through the tunnel
wanting to give them the finger
not wanting to slam into the tile wall that is inches to my side
man... I wanted to give them the finger
no.... it would not of helped
but it is what i wanted to do

up porter
the sidewalk is packed
up on the road
not too far to the right
almost the middle of the lane
if people are going to pass... they need to pass in the other lane

a car comes down the hill and passes fast and close
too close
I feel the wind at my side
they come in close after they pass
as I roll towards the climb I give them the finger
I just hold it there
if they are looking at me
they see that I am giving them the finger

as I climb the hill I see they are stuck at the light
as much as I want to show them that their high speed was ineffieient
I am more in hope that they get a green
no desire to make contact
already regretting giving the bird
when will I learn
as I pass I see it is a woman
that offers some relief
I roll past without eye contact or any more gesturing

into the basement
I hang with the kids while lisa walks the dogs
right towards home

was not out as long as I had wanted to be
but back in time before I turned into a pumpkin

dogs, cats, and exotic birds

if my rare and expensive exotic bird got out of its cage and "flew the coop" so to speak
then that rare and expensive exotic bird ended up in a cat's mouth...
do you think that a cat owner would do much more than shrug your shoulders and say... oh well

well, what if my dogs were going down the sidewalk and out of my control someone's cat ended up in my dog's mouth...
well... it would be the start of a civil war
the streets would divide
cat people would unite
craig's list, urban moms, and every other forum I can not think of at this moment would be chock full of comments...
it is something I do not even like to think about

(I better watch what I say as I do not want to offend The Old Bag as I know she loves her furry fish that swim around the house)

what if my dogs did not catch this said cat... but in the process of chasing the cat got run over by a car
do you think the cat owner would do much more than shrug their shoulders?
I guess there is not just one cookie cutter answer

well.... my dogs did not eat a cat
but... a leashless cat arroused my dogs...
my dogs did what dogs do and gave into their nature
in a lunge, a jump, and a little chase after the cat my four year old son was pulled to the ground
the cat climbed a tree
no one was hurt
but... what if?
I hate to think... what if?
but what if my son had broken his arm or chipped a tooth?
is the cat owner to blame?

there must be some cause and effect
some sort of legal if then

I am really confused by this....

help me out

of course the hypothetical continues
the variables continue to mount as well
what if the cat gets run over by a car?
what if my dog got run over by a car?
more likely the dog than the cat as cats are more smart than dogs about some things
yet neither is as smart as the fox
back to my point...
what was my point?
oh, what if....
what if
okay... you get the idea

I hate what ifs and worst case scenarios

the apes

the apes
the apes blog

who are "the apes?"
living in Mount Pleasant I am close enough to the National Zoo to hear the chants of the howler monkeys
people claim to hear the tigers roar.... I think it is the electronic audio of the tiger's roar
what about the apes?
I am close enough to hear them... why have I not heard them before
because I was not listening close enough
there are the apes... just blocks away.... and I can not hear them

last night I took the dogs for an urban walk
the dogs had already had a walk in the woods earlier that evening with me and the boys
but... both the dogs and myself could use a walk around "the hood"
as I have moved closer to rock creek park I have become somewhat disattached from so much that is mount pleasant

last night I looked at the buildings
watched to see whose porch has been painted and whose porch is falling down
walked past my old house and saw bulbs that I planted still coming to life
walked past the group house I lived in before that and saw that I have been gone so long from that house that trees have settled in
flourishing with deep roots and long branches

as I backtracked with a bag I found the package that brutus had left behind
not sure why he had not dropped it in the woods
although I am not perfect
I can not hate those that do not pick up their dog's poop if I do not pick up my dog's poop myself
hate being a hypocrite
although it happens some time

after locating his little package I continued home
as I looked at archetecture dogs smelled the signature of other dogs

in my random meanderings I ran into an old neighbor
we have each moved since we lived along side of each other
both staying in the same neighborhood
just as I have moved my focus from dogs to children so has she
I stopped and chatted
she had just returned from an urban walk herself
she was with this lady ape

it was interesting meeting one of the apes
her perspective amused me
I think I will have to dig deeper into her blog as she seems to be quite creative
I may even have to listen to some of their music
although I fear that I am too old and too square to appreciate it

long board skate video.... is that a cover or is that Minor Threat?

lonnie.... at his weekday job

been meaning to visit Lonnie at his weekend job
Lonnie sells homemade incense at the Eastern Market in Southeast Washington DC
while on weekdays he does the bike thing



there is a basic idea that has been lost in the modern age
that idea is respect

people need to respect themselves
people need to respect others

as bitter and angry as I am... everyone gets initial respect at the first encounter
but... the privledge of respect can be revoked at any time

respect for my elders?
certainly... I respect my elders
and older folks are given a little more of a break they are granted
but.... it grandpa runs a redlight and nearly runs me down
he gets the finger like everyone else even if he is wearing a roman collar

if grandma fails to yeild to my wife and children as we cross the street...
I may not spit square in her face... but I will step forward and tell her to "slow down"
depending upon her response... she may even get a "slow the f_ck down" as I want to make sure my point is heard

I try to maintain my cool
but something about someone interferring with my right to live to tomorrow
or worse yet... someone threatening the life of my wife and children
it pisses me off
for some reason that shit gets my heart rate up

as a cyclist, a runner, a hiker, a walker, a husband, a dog owner, and as a father I have found much motivation for altering my behavior
also... existing in each of these sub-groups has given me empathy for each and every other person that exists in these sub-groups
from my existence in these sub-groups I am able to transfer empathy to the rights of others in various other subgroups
I fear that most of our culture has failed to transfer their feeling of their personal rights to other people's rights as well

the rowers and canoes at the boat clubs on the Potomac hate the power boaters
jet skiers are human devils to their subculture
yet... these same people who love their human power crafts
fail to understand that when they are in their cars going to their boat houses when they pass cyclists fast and close... well... they are just as lame as the Gold's Gym asshole on the jet ski with his OAKLEY THERMONUCLEAR PROTECTION gear from 1985

how can the person who works and saves so they can go diving twice a year understand the fear for their life as a power boater cruises over head when there is clearly a flag marking divers bellow
yet, they can not understand that when they make a fast and aggressive pass around a cyclist on a winding and twisting road that they are no different

it boggles my mind
we need to increase our ability to empathize
we need to show others respect
we need to show everyone respect
if we simply started by having all of us that love our human powered activities to share respect for all others and their human powered activities
well.... we would be improving our behavior ten fold
we could expand from there
thanks for listening


gearing for Single Speeds off road...

there was a comment to a prior post where someone asked what gearing to use for a Single Speed Mountain Bike Off Road....

that is a question as complex as many other age old riddles
why does the dog chase the cat?
how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie roll tootsie pop?

the gearing for a single speed depends upon the rider, the terrain, and the bike
there are too many variables for just one answer

I have a personal rule for single speeds...

as I also ride geared mountain bikes
my rule is I will not race a Single Speed on a course unless I feel that my lap/course times will be equal to what they would be if I were riding my geared bike
I own two Surly Karate Monkeys; one geared with front shock and one rigid single speed
both bikes with 29 inch wheels
last season I think I raced 10 races... roughly five of those I raced on the single speed
including a six hour relay
next month I plan on racing the 12 Hours of Lodi Farms on the rigid single speed
the single works great for these types of courses... I feel that there is no loss of time
last year I race the Wednesday at Wakefield races on the Single within the Clydesdale Class
on one evening I brought the geared Monkey instead... my times were pretty much the same
that said...
the Single Speeders all changed their gears after the first race
I felt that I was overspinning on some of the flats
but did not want to go too big a gear to lose speed on the roller coaster climbs

that said...
the 32X16 with 29 inch wheels seemed to work for me
but.... that may not even be my gearing as I have not thought about that stuff since I built the bike a few years ago

you may want to consult someone else
there are many that will ride and race the Single exclusively
there are more Single Speeders at the Shenandoah Mountain 100 then I would have ever expected
to me that would be like trying to run a marathon in flip flops
to them it makes perfect sense
lucky for them they are not living by my rules

pre-riding is for the pros
smaller gearing is better than too large
over spinning on the flats is better than walking on the climbs
unless of course... you are going to have to walk the climbs either way

does that fill in the blank on anyones's single speed gearing questions?
I am not that technical in my approach to my machines
I just love to ride

DT's RACE PAGE gets freaky on Wikipedia!
32sixteen Blog
a beautiful BMX Video I stole from 32sixteen
wonderfully shot... great musical score
take a look at all the things that you can not do on a bike

starbucks and bottled water?
brother can can you spare a dime?
more like... brother can you spare a ten spot.


those dirty "C" words

Common sense... Common Courtesy... and Civility

I make no claims at being perfect
from some of my complaints in my posts you may think that I am some high and mighty do gooder
well...anyone who knows me knows that is just not the case
I can be an asshole just like anyone else
at times
I am more of an asshole than anyone else
well... not usually in a jerk sort of way
but... frequently in a direct sort of way
that is a blog topic for another time

this morning I tried to fight my impulses
so often I let the actions of others cause a reaction in me
I need to fight this auto-pilot set of responses
we are all robots of sorts
giving responses and actions to the stimulus around us

when crossing the street or riding my bike around town I can get offended by the actions of car drivers
with my dogs at my side and my son on my shoulder it irks me when a car comes speeding up or down the hill in front of my house
exceeding the speed limit
refusing to yeild
rather than flipping them off and letting my heart rate raise
I am trying just let it go
as my impulse reaction is doing nothing to alter their future behavior
it is just effecting my mood for that moment and for the moments that follow

there was an incident with a cup of coffee a year or so ago
that incident haunts me
talking to the driver's wife
talking to the driver's neighbors
I have heard this story come up again and again
sure, last week this same driver nearly hit me while I was on my bike
he was speeding on his own block
he was rolling through the stop sign just 10 yards from his own house
at least he is consistent
he is not just driving like an asshole on my street
he is driving like an asshole on his street
he is driving like an asshole on all streets
from what I have heard.... he is just an asshole
I need to let him go

common sense says... getting angered by another person's actions only brings me down to their level
I can not let every action and interaction with people through my day dictate my emotions
life is too short to be bitter and angry all day

it sounds so easy..
it is not so easy
at each corner there is another person causing conflict
another person refusing to give me my right to space
another person putting their needs infront of everyone else's rights

the Mercedez with Virginia tags parked in front of the hydrant in front of my house?
as much as I wanted to take a dump on the windshield of this car... I refrained
went a move civil route... went for leaving a note
rather than making an obnoxious remark on paper
I simply stated that the car was parked in front of a hydrant
wrote this note on pink paper
perhaps the initial response that there is a ticket on their windshield will cause an emotion
then the site that it is not a ticket will allow the emotion to change to the emotion of relief
then... the mention of the hydrant may lead to thought...
but... it is worth a try
I have not investigated
but I am sure that if I spoke with the owner of this car's neighbor's and friends they would tell me
this person does stuff like this all the time
they always go for the biggest piece of chocolate cake
they always take the last beer
they always park in front of the hydrant
some people exist this way

let them be
I can not change them
I will not change them
a ticket issued by officer friendly would not change them
I need to just let them go

the woman who passed me yesterday as I was crossing the street to my car

the same one I flipped off as she nearly ran over my foot
the same one I passed minutes later in my car
yes... the one that I flipped off when I passed her after getting in my car, letting my car warm up, then driving up the hill
she is not gone yet
now she is gone

I need to learn to be more civil
part of trying to be more civil is to act not out of impulse reaction
but to act out of thought
I am a flawed person
I admit this
I am trying


city style

afternoon shadows

bikes waiting for their owners to get off work

bad blood

lending and borrowing
for the most part lending and borrowing are a bad idea
trying to keep a rule of no lending and no borrowing may be a good rule
it is a hard rule to keep
it is better to maintain the no lending and no borrowing rule than to deal with the consequences

even people with the best intentions can fail to return borrowed goods
I myself... the one with all the rules... has an assortment of things that I borrowed from friends and have been delinquent in returning them

there are cds, dvds, a few tools, an old 16mm camera
any and all things borrowed stand out when I see them
I know that they are not mine
I know that I borrowed these things with the best of intentions to return them
so, when my son has friends over and they want to borrow stuff... I try to hold firm with the rule that there is no lending and no borrowing
we don't borrow other boy's toys
we don't lend other boy's toys
it is tough to say no
but the consequences of lending and borrowing are even more difficult to deal with

it may seem like a good idea to lend things out
it can be a kind and generous thing to do
but... for the most part there is a simple rule
never lend out anything that you are not prepared to give away
as what is lent out may come back broken or not come back old
this goes the same if you lend out something to a 5 year old or a 35 year old

the lending and borrowing of bicycles or bicycle tools most certainly has causes bad blood in various relationships in the past
it is better to just give someone something than to lend it to them

human nature

in life how we play games can be reflected how we live life

years ago the game of backgammon was a favorite of mine
in playing this game I developed an understanding of human nature
this is what I decided...

when people make a mistake in a game of backgammon it can be seen one of two ways... as a mistake or as cheating
while rolling the dice at the backgammon tables in the south of france I learned that people play the odds
to blance the scale of unlucky dice there are those that miscount

there are two mistakes... those that favor the player and those that disadvantage the player
if the backgammon player makes an error and it falls in their opponent's favor then it is an honest mistake

when that same person makes an error in counting and it is in their own favor then they are cheating
it is that simple
certain players will mistakenly miscount in their favor over and over again

this little metaphor extends to different games
this metaphor extends directly to life

borrowing stuff...
counting change...
you name it

that is how it happens
or at least
this is how I see it

a few quick thoughts from the weekend

went to yoga yesterday
it was good to be back into the downward facing dog
the class I attend is an open ashtanga class
not the straight series, more of a move at your own pace set of moves that improve a person's ashtanga practice
this works for me as I can work around my inabilities
once a week is really not enough to really advance at yoga
yet, once a week is better for the body than no yoga practice at all

my body is stiff by nature
being away from yoga has allowed me to drift back to being more stiff
the injury to my hand
the injury to my shoulder
years of injuries before last year
these things make my yoga efforts less than dynamic
the feeling I get is dynamic
even if the poses I hold hardly resemble the desired Ashtanga pose

after yoga it was a day of rain
once the rain settled I leashed up the dogs and suited up the boys
walking in the rain is good for the soul
not enough people walk in the rain
most people avoid walking
most people avoid the rain
as I finished getting the boys dressed in their rain boots and rain jackets I saw friend and fellow City Bikes Mountain Bike Team member Joe Foley roll down the hill on his bike
it is not hard to see what Joe Foley has done to become NEW AND IMPROVED

I ride when I can
which is not as frequent as I would like
I have to be satisfied with my input to reward ratio

my arms are feeling the burn from yesterdays yoga workout
it is a good burn
would be a nice day to get on the bike
that won't happen
there are many other things that need to happen first