Race Report... Bruce throws an Election themed Alleycat...

today (Saturday) I met up with  Bruce\Jordon\and DannyK for some frisbee golf...
it was a beautiful morning at Seneca Creek State Park
my dog Didg was there hanging with the pack
it was a close contest.... now my arm really hurts... Bruce Won (again)
good fun

last Saturday Bruce hosted an election themed Alleycat...

the Presidential election had occurred the Tuesday before
this unusual election has had a delay in announcing the results

due to Covid there was a dramatic increase in mail in ballots
which had votes being counted for days following election day
on this Saturday it was announced that Joe Biden had not only won the popular vote... but Biden also scored the 270 votes from the Electoral College to make him the winner of the election and the next president of the United States
270 and still counting...

Go Joe!
Number 46

that announcement came in the early morning...
the Alleycat was scheduled for a 3PM Start
on this day Coast to Coast cities were celebrating the Biden Win
champagne sales were the highest of the year... beyond New Year's Eve!

the celebration on the streets was an added obstacle in the day's Alleycat race


Saturday arrived and the weather was beautiful
unseasonably warm... felt like an Indian Summer day in September

I was excited about the opportunity to meet up with friends and participate in a messenger race
the morning leading up to the race was mellow 
just the standard dog walk in Fort Slocum Park and not much more

the bike did not get more than a glance
in fact... I more than likely did not bother to lube the chain
the bike seemed fine at last Saturday's Alleycat
so... I figured it should be fine now

sure - ok - I may have pinched the tires to test the pressure... but nothing more
do not think the tires even needed air

having spoken to Bruce I knew that the Start and the Finish were not going to be the same place
so... I would not be able to drop my backpack at the Finish and race light
instead I packed up a hydration pack backpack without the bladder and packed some necessities
light weight jacket, blinky lights, pump\tube, multi-tool, and some food\fuel
and extra water bottle

in addition to that I would be riding with a hip pack that I won in a previous Alleycat
the hip pack is not part of my day to day apparel
but it is an essential part of the Alleycat race efficiency
easy access to manifest\phone\glasses\etc.

within the hip pack I also have a DVD case with a rubber band that I use as a clip board
it keeps my manifest in half decent shape and gives me some backing to write on the manifest when need be
a sweat soaked manifest... or a manifest blowing away in the wind... these things need to be avoided... they happen... and they need to be avoided

the start would be Crispus Attucks park... an unusual little park surrounded by the back of the surrounding row houses
it is a nice little spot 
a bit of a secret in the city
this day would a beautiful day to gather in the park... virtually any park

the ride to the start was essentially what would have been half of my commute in life before Covid
in these times due to Covid I am working remotely
no commute... wake up and go from my bed to my home office... home office being my older son's bedroom left vacant by him being off at college

the majority of the world is working remotely

it is an unusual time
an unusual time to say the least

much of the world is on hold
while the rest of the world is trying to exist solely online

the 3PM start was a convenient start time for my lazy day
also... early enough that the race should be concluded before dark


not Zoom...


these are not screen captures from Zoom meetings...
these are collages from my Blogger past
search the archives for bits of who knows what
SEARCH the search bar in the upper right hand corner and see what comes up

unfortunately... not all photos have names
and no photos have tags

yet... the archives are still worth guessing around

the people in these photos are all bicycle messengers

these shots are over a decade old

only Pat Riggins of Real Courier still works as a courier

smart people can be idiots...

 just because you are smart does not mean that you are always right...

Covid Sucks... be safe...

Covid Sucks!

Be Safe!

Wear a Mask!

RACE REPORT: Dead City 2020 (Covid Alleycat)

details of the day are faint
weeks have passed and another alleycat has been hosted

the only real way to write a decent race report is to immediately start telling the tale after it happens
then edit and re-edit in the days to follow
editing is not really my thing
and well...
not having a time machine... I will have to try to just start typing several weeks after the fact 
who knows what details if any will come to surface

The DC Dead City Alleycat has a history of being one of the better attended DC Alleycats...
the event is normally well attended by racers and friends ALWAYS ending in an Epic After Party, but not this year... Covid has different plans for people

so... a race that is normally late afternoon into the evening was hosted in the day... 

RACE REPORT: Dead City 2020
the race was scheduled for Halloween Day 2020
Halloween Day... not Halloween Evening or Night... but in the day... early enough for people to rush home after the race to hand out candy to the little ghouls and goblins

I toyed with the idea of a costume... but really... I have nothing available... or should I say nothing new... I still have my cheerleaders costume... and my private school girl skirt... and a few other options
but last year's Jedi costume was difficult to race with... cumbersome and a pain in the ass... which has me not so focused on a costume... so not exactly festive... but racing without a costume would be better than not racing at all

trying to warm up... not as mentally chatty today as I was yesterday... maybe more coffee would help

college age me with Brian Baker at Dag Haus
Add caption

random photos from different moments in my life...
not too many photos pre-digital
as film was more expensive
and really
someone needed a friend committed to the hobby of photography for that to happen

Photo by Kevin Dillard

Kevin Dillard is a local cyclists... a messenger... and a photographer
Demoncats is his photo page

Tour de Fat

ah... New Belgium's Tour de Fat
that is a blur of bicycle filled memories
Good Times for Sure!

as a representative of MORE I volunteered and ran the Bike Valet at the Tour de Fat for a few years...
it was quite an event

scan the Gwadzilla Archives for
Tour de Fat
New Belgium

Bicycle Tour in Europe 1990

ah... the only scanned photo from that Europe trip
an over shared photo
there are a number of photos that I share and share again
Sledding at Battery Kimble on the cover of the Washington Post, that Tour de Fat shot, and some shots with my kids
only so many shots of me that I like

Santa-Anarchy - Santarchy

not feeling any more creative...
maybe if I try to write up a race report for the recent Alleycats I will get the flow I am looking for


too funny...
years ago... for years... I did IT at CBS News in Washington...
not the local affiliate... the Washington Bureau 

this job gave me and others our own Forrest Gump moments
I stood in the same room as history
on so many occasions I saw things as they happened
Inaugurations... Protests... whatever...

the CBS Staff had computers in buildings all around the city... 
The Pentagon... The US Capitol... Justice Department... District Court... SCOTUS
and The White House

it was interesting...
it was fun to mix it up... to get out of the office and migrate the city
walk to Department of State from 2020 M Street....
BikeShare to The Hill

it was an interesting time...
lots of memories from those times

Blog... who cares is anyone reads blogs anymore... I got to get some shit out!


It is an outlet

It is a release

I need an outlet

I need to release

maybe I need to blog


what percentage of DC drivers are Handicapped?

It seems that everybody and their brother has a handicap badge hanging from their rear view mirror...

it seems to me that this system needs a push of the reset button...

there is no way that all of these cars have a driver or a passenger with a handicap that need to take the handicap space

if a non-handicap person occupies the handicap space... then that space is not available for those that are actually handicapped

Take away the Blue Rear View Mirror Card... change the color and demand that people re-apply for the handicap pass
have a short education attached to the process so that people can understand what the pass is for and the negative consequences of using that pass when not needed

Hazard Lights... I do not think they mean what you think they mean

everyday cars are parked illegally with their hazards on...

what do the drivers think this means?

ticket these cars...
tow these cars...
penalize this behavior so it stops

why do we accept the unacceptable?

a new ticket system of nominal ticket fees... then a suspension of driving privilege if the driver got an excess of these nominal tickets

the driving style of the average DC driver during the commute times is selfish and short sighted

the percentage of drivers talking or texting while drive is absurd
the world around these drivers is at risk
bicyclist and pedestrians go unseen by the distracted driver

I am surprised there are not more fatalities with drivers driving as they do

blocking the box...

double parking...

cell phone use while driving...

if there were DC officials... they would not need to be police...
these hired\paid officials would issue traffic tickets

tickets for minor offenses
with a low fee... maybe 5 dollars... 5 dollars then doubled if not paid
if the driver were to get 5 of these tickets in a certain period... then their license would be suspended

driving is not a right it is a privilege

may people are abusing this privilege
if we were to remove the scoff law drivers fro the streets... we would have better flow to traffic and safer streets

Safer Streets... a simple concept... have professional drivers drive in a professional manner or lose their right to drive as professionals

the violations on the streets of DC are created by the same drivers every day in the same way...

so many of these drivers are professional drivers
if we could "curb" the double parking
if we could reduce the parking in the bike lane

why do we accept this unacceptable behavior

Fed Ex and UPS have a delivery strategy
but really... I do not think that we should accept the unacceptable
why do we allow them to drive and park the way that they do
would you rather have less traffic and safer streets or your package delivered in 24 hours?

that is a rhetorical question
do not answer that

Delivery Drivers... not just Fed Ex and UPS have a tenancy to double park or park in the bike lane even if there is an open space along side the curb

Why does our system enable this behavior?

If there is an excess of daily deliveries to a certain area then maybe there needs to be a DELIVERY ZONE

when I lived in Mount Pleasant I suggested this to DDOT
and the DDOT representative was dumbfounded.... "a delivery zone in a residential neighborhood?"
yes... and why not?
get the delivery truck out of the road

that is a simple concept
well.. reduction would be a start

Porch Pirates... don't support the Porch Pirate

as a rule I try to steer away from grey market deals in the park

it is tempting...
a guy selling a 12 dollar bag of Pistachios for a couple of bucks
or worse yet... the guy with bicycle parts
usually new bicycle parts

DC Jump Bike... a dance with the dark side... a bit of a fiasco...

I am not a fan of eBikes

it is very similar to guns
I have no issue with guns
my issue is with people with guns
the problem is people

I have no issue with eBikes
it is people with eBikes


is it my understanding the a New Belgium just celebrated the 20th Anniversary of the Tour de Fat!?!?!

New Belgium Brewery has brought the party for 20 Years!
Thanks New Belgium

for a few years the New Belgium Family came to visit DC for the DC Incarnation of the Tour de Fat
Tour de Fat

made so many new friends
many friends became better friends
because of the Tour de Fat
New Belgium

so many great memories
thanks New Belgium!


Dean... approaching 18... about to graduate high school... headed off to college... WaPo All Met Athlete and the stroke on the National Champion Wilson HS Varsity 8

ah... my older son Dean
so happy... so proud
I love this kid
and yes... I love his brother Grant too

such a great kid...
so proud of his achievements and the person he has become and the adult he is headed to be

so many great experience shared with this boy over the past (almost) 18 years
lots of bike rides... lots of dog walks...
lots of adventures
lots and lots of fun

various stages
different interests

a strong cyclist
a solid soccer player
grew into being an amazing rower

rowing all four years at Wilson High School
(and novice at Alice Deal)
developing in strength and skill such that during his senior year Dean took on the Stroke seat and went on to hold the fastest PR for both the 2k and the 20 minute erg events

so proud...
Dean put a good deal of energy into making all that happen
extra work outs... proper diet... rest... etc.

I Love Dean So Much!

high school is ending... college is right around the corner

Dean landed a rowing scholarship to nationally ranked Syracuse University
Dean will need a new winter coat... 

that kid...
can crack me up... can make me proud

wow... these photos bring back so many memories from Deans various stages of growth and development 

WaPo All Met Athletes 2019

rants on the gwadzilla blog containing Dean

Didg January 2012... dog born late 2011...

My Main Man Didg!

Didg and his four legged family


RACE REPORT: DCMTB hosts DCXC at Schaeffer Farms in June 2019

RACE REPORT: DCXC Schaeffer Farms 2019
Hell Yes!

What a collaboration between DCMTB and MORE to bring a XC mountain bike race to the DMV

Several key DCMTB team members worked very very hard to make this event happen
this all started months and months in advance... ideas... meetings... emails... etc.

Who was it?
Will Sanders\Todd Keller\Kelly Gray\Mark Drajem... who else? Did Matt Conte do anything?

DCMTB\MORE hosted several trail work days that did everything that needed to be done to make this roller coaster of a trail be race worthy... there were fallen trees and lots of green over growth that had to be trimmed back

Mauricio\Dave McGill\Todd Bauer\Bob Caverly and others brought the muscle (WHo else? Who am I leaving out)
the city boys from DCMTB followed the instructions of the seasoned trail builders on making things happen

then on race day...
DCMTB volunteers showed up early and ran an efficient machine
did you see those Awards? Thanks Jed Dinger

there was some last minute juggling of the order of the releasing of the categories
that worked out well
flexibility is important in sports... not just yoga

it seemed that everything went off smoothly

lots of smiles on people's faces after they finished their racing

the course was well recieved
it was fast and flowy... lots of change in elevation...
the temp was favorable... hot in the open area... not too bad in the woods... no so humid...
course was dry but not dusty


this day gave rise to a notion

There should be more mountain bike racing in this area!


If local cycling teams could partner with local shops and create a local race... we could build a local race series

Mountain Biking could host races similar to how Cyclocross happens through no for profit teams versus promoters

Any thoughts on this?

it would be great to see more mountain bike racing in the DMV...


of course Greenbrier! What about Gambril or Green Ridge State Park?

Cabin John may not work...
What about Fairland?

I am certain that people have finished a ride at their favorite set of trails and thought... "This would be a great place for a race!"

well... consider it
start the process

make it happen!

more photos on the Gwadzilla Facebook Page

How was my day? How was my race?

in short... it was not my best effort
had fun riding\racing the course
it was no my best day

but I had a good time getting out on the bike!


Interest in DCMTB
Check us out Here