tonight's ride

let me see if I can make this fast...

the boys are still up
it is way past their bedtime
but... we just took a shower/bath
and well
I am dry and they are still splashing around
lets see what I can throw down before they flood the bathroom

tonight was a pretty good example of how a father who wants to mountain bike manages to mountain bike with two kids

it was known in advance that lisa had a work dinner and that I would be in the mr mom roll
so I planted the seed a few days prior
got a feeling for where the kids were
the seed was the thought of a picnic at the airport

we talked about the bike ride
the sandwiches
the use of the trailer
and the airport
when I got home from work I thought that the neighbor's slip and slide was going to win out over heat and humidity on the bike path in the burley trailer
but I was wrong

the boys were stoked for the adventure
so with the theme of mission impossible in my head I started to get ready with the excitement of trying to defuse a bomb
there was a change in cycling shoes
the swaping of the bikes
the trailer needed to be pulled from the garage then assembled
the boys would need drinks
the three sandwiches cut into thirds had already been purchased on the way home from Potbelly's
there were granola bars
there were capri suns
there was water
lots of water for everyone

while I gather this gear the boys gathered there vital stuff
I assigned the filling of the water bottles to the boys
there were several bottles with ice at grant's side
grant handed them to dean
dean filled them up from the filter on the fridge
there was moderate overflow and spillage
but that is to be expected

once the water bottles were filled I reminded them to get their toys
the same toys that they spoke of two nights prior were the exact toys that they gathered
like good criminals they were sticking to the plans of a well thought out caper

from the backyard the boys watched the slip and slide as I finished hooking the trailer to the bike and getting the right two helmets
it looked like fun
but dean and grant were already excited about the ride in the trailer

with a slow grind we were off

up the alley
across the street
onto the sidewalk
down porter street to rock creek park
and onto the bike path along side of beach drive

the commuters were out along side of the post work workouts
the trail can be thin at times with the trailer in tow and the head-on trail users out of focus of the tasks at hand

we went around the tunnel and through the zoo
up the hill
cross the street
then down the hill
we followed the creek till it got to the river

then we followed the river to the airport
crossing the potomac after a stretch of road on the way to haines point
the tourists were out in full force
it is the start of tourist season... but that does not interest me because I do not hunt

with the children content in the trailer I rolled past the intended picnic area beneath the landing planes
we pushed the bike past the airport towards Old Town Alexandria
but shortly after the airport itself the boys asked to go to the airport
I turned around
with excitement I told them that we were at the airport
they told me that they wanted to have a picnic at the airport
I said we were on our way

moments later we were at park where the planes glide into the landing strip
it was then that I learned that both of the both of the boys thought that we were having a picnic in the airport
there was a small discussion after the slight confusion
no tantrums as hunger superseeded sublties such as location
with sandwiches in hand the boys were content

the planes screamed overhead as we ate our sandwiches
the bicycles rolled by
commuter racing
racers training
couples out on a date
familiar faces then a mountain biking friend from my mountain biking team

after the sandwiches and some drinks we were back on the path and across the river to the awakening at haines point
we shuffled in with the road cyclist training (both the racers and the wannabees)
only to pull over at the scupture instead of doing multiple laps on the road
here the boys got to climb the various apendages of the sculpture
we spent as much time leaving as we did staying
with the son already deep over the horizon we needed to rush home before dark

the boys complained
they wanted to stay
they always want to stay
it was late
the speed and the bumps made drinking in the trailer difficult for dean
so I slowed
I sped up
he spilled
it went that way for the final 35 minutes home
pretty much had to ride through it

arrived home
unpacked the boys and the gear
pulled the bikes and the trailer into the backyard
set the boys up with a snack to occupy them as I put stuff in the garage

then the shower
to the present time
by this time I have already pulled boys out of the tub
dried them off
passed off once child to the wife who walked in from her work dinner
talked to the other while he dressed himself
I am finishing up this entry as lisa sits with them as they read to themselves as some bedtime quiet time
it is late
way late

managed to watch the kids and get a ride in
a good time shared by all
something we should do more often
as it is good for the family
good for the legs and lungs
working hard to move slow is a good workout

reality and life...

this story is about a bike that is a pipe bomb

lojack on your bike

a story in the DCist about a bicycle owner fed up with stolen bikes

Lucky Number Seven-Lance Cleared

lance cleared in previous drug allegations
ny times tells the tale

here is the same story from forbes

that is good news
great to have that feel good story stay along side of the sqeaky clean image
hard work and fair play

Spokes Article....

this year I was given the opportunity to write the
SINGLETRACK article in the Mid-Atlantic cycling magazine SPOKES

I am about to start in on the article for next month...
usually I wait till the night before to start my homework
it I want an
A on this test.... I best start sooner

the topic:
please send me an email if you are interested in some


I am really impressed that my little name to email link works!

mile high club

never has ballooning been such an attractive hobby

sloggi ballon

sloggi blog

yesterday I had never heard of the sloggi underware product
now I want to buy stock in the company
or maybe just direct deposit my check to some of the models bank account

sex sells... or does it?

sex sells!
or does it?

it is clear that sex sells sex...
does sex sell other products?

does advertising sell products?

sex in advertising may act to grab our attention
does this attention grabber get us to the store to make a purchase?

then the notion of exploitation...
are the bikes being exploited to sell underware in the sloggi ad?
(feel free to go to this underware site... only when security is taking you to the door and your boss is handing you your last check.... remember to tell them you were shopping for a gift for your wife!)

are the suicide girls being exploited?

and how about poor old jenna jameson?

this is an interestng set of questions
I like the images
I like images of pretty woman
I like images of bicycles
put them together.... WOW!

just a little something to start your morning

it was a visit to FressWheelingSpirit that got me on this tangent
now work is calling me away
would love to research this topic at greater length
but.... too dangerous for the work place

but come on... it is MYSPACE!


post alley cat grin

alley cat triple crown this weekend past
apparently meredith had a good time and placed well at all three events

I know little about it as these are not really my thing
checked demoncats
great images
but nothing about the triple crown

many weaknesses

I am a man of many weaknesses
one of my favorite weaknesses has to be coca cola
I love coca cola
I love all the varieties of coca cola
no I am not saying that I like old coke, new coke, cherry coke, vanilla coke, whatever coke
I am saying that I love the varieties of coke as they vary by presentation
coke in a plastic bottle
coke in a two liter bottle
coke comes in an aluminum can
and of course
coke comes in an ornate glass bottle

coke tastes best served warm onto cold crushed ice
but people will almost always chose for coke in the classic ornated glass bottle even if it lacks that wonderful aluminum flavor

I drink way too much coke
but... it is so darn tasty
it is not just a compulsion
it is a craving
and at times
it is a wonderful pleasure
at times it is out of habit
most of the time it gives enjoyment

serious spds



tim again

endurance loop to schaeffer farms

glancing at a map it is looking like an endurance loop to schaeffer farms may ba more than I think I would be interested in doing

from mile one on the C&O Canal...
to roughly Violettes Lock
that is roughly 22 miles
then there is some serious road miles
unless there is some singletrack on the golf course
either way
that is a lot of miles to get to schaeffer farms
the riddle
is clopper lake on the route to schaffer?
does the loop at Clopper Lake connect to Schaffer Farms?


the closest legal trails to my house would have to be the Fort Dupont/Fort Circle trails
these trails need to be developed
with enough work this stuff could be worth going to
right now
it is less than a destination
okay... these trails are a destination
but the thrill of getting out alive is a bigger thrill than the trails themselves

CO2 and 29ers

new toys...
recently I got a Serfas CO2 cartridge
brought it along at Lodi Farms
was pleased I did not need to use it
then used it to top off my tire out on the trail a Schaeffer
then today at Gambril State Park with my brother I got a flat
was going to walk it back to the car as we were less than a mile from finishing our ride
but went ahead and fixed it as it needed to be fixed sometime
went right past the Crank Brothers mini pump and got out the Serfas CO2 cartridge bike pump
part of the process was learning to use this tool for when I would need it
I learned a few things
learned how to use the pump... easy enough
learned that it may take more than one cartridge to fill a 29 inch tube
that is tood to know
these things may be great in an an intense race situation
but no need to fill the landfill for the average flat situation
I am not that lazy

gambril this morning

went to gambril this morning

with the permission slip signed I had the bikes packed and the bike ready to go when I rolled out of bed this morning
grabbed some coffee and took the dogs for a quick walk before I left
patted the boys on the head (okay...I did not)
gave the wife a peck on the cheek (yes, I did)
then crossed town to pick up my brother

had talked with some others about meeting up to ride
but as the weekend started to wind down the window of opportunity started shrinking
as it was memorial day I had things to do other than ride my bike
there were hot dogs to eat and a pool to splash around in

arrived at my brother's
he gears was packed and waiting for me
his boys were geared up and already riding
three year old conrad was not only wearing his gloves and his helmet
while eric was taking off his sunglasses but keeping the helmet on
living the rule
no discussion
no helmet... no bike

loaded up the car and headed out of town
there was no real traffic to speak of other than the image of rolling thunder
we discussed if rolling thunder was a bike rally or a memorial day ride
my brother propossed make it bicycles only and see if these people still want to ride in a parade for the same cause
I thought that free baked beans at the start would aid in keeping the name of ROLLING THUNDER true to form

we arrived in the trailhead parking lot and took the last space
it was fairly early
but there were already people finishing up their morning hikes and morning rides
we suited up and got on our bikes
with little discussion we decided to take the route of old faithful, the yellow loop

gambril is good riding
the rock gardens are a challenge with plenty of winding singletrack break in between
it can be a challenge
at times I got a tad frustrated with the new development of girl scout routes and cheat lines
it is tough on the brain
as the brain is solving each problem as the wheels roll up on them
pick the safe and clear
pick the safe and clear
well.... there is not always time decline a selection because it is too easy
as that is against the primary goal of finding the safe and clear line
too safe and too clear is too complicated of an revision to make as you are slamming down the trail

riding with my brother is a good match
we have been riding together for years
we have been hanging together for years
there is never a shortage of things to talk about
even if the stories have been shared before
the skill level is very similar
although we each have a different riding style with varying strengths

we alternated leading
although I think he lead more
although he knows I often prefer not following someone else's wheel
there were a few moments where we raced for position
challenged the other for a hole shot
or cleared a section that the other failed
we went out for just short of two and a half hours
including my flat tire just a mile out on our way back to the cars

it was a awesome ride
do I dare say it was an epic ride
we each felt moderately confident
we each felt good about clearing sections that were challenging
we each felt good about not getting hurt
and getting to ride on this fine weekend
what a memorial day

after our yellow loop forward
and our abreviated yellow loop backwards.... plus a short down and back on a catotin trail we loaded up my car and pointed for home
there was temptation of the burger king or maybe the taco bell
but the window of opportunity had closed
we had achieved our goals
it was time for responsibilities

the responsibilities of memorial day involve splashing in my dad's pool and eating burgers and dogs all day
we arrived at my dad's with the wives and children already pool side
the cousins were all swimming like fish
with a little more than a brush of the dirt on my sweat dried legs I was in the pool as well

the day was pretty special in a very simplistically common memorial day sort of way
highlights include dean and grant going off the diving board in their favorite to infinity and beyond sort of pose
along with various andvancements in each of their swimming techniques

many burgers were shared
there was lemonade (and sodas for dad)
lisa left early so grant could nap
the cousins left for their next adventure
and well
dean and I stayed behind and continued to swim

evacuation was not easy
there was no kicking or screaming
while there was need for some simply trickery or basic promises
we arrived home without more than a second to get the grill going for dinner guests and their children
the boys were exhausted
not in the best mood for entertaining
the best was made of it
as behavior was getting menacing I motioned for a little SKY HIGH
that kept the two older boys entertained
while the two younger boys stayed with the parents and were munched on fruit and bits of ice cream sandwiches

the night for the boys ended with a bath
like they needed more water
I am ending the night with a drink
like I need another drink

cabin john trails

this month in SPOKES magazing I wrote an article on a dirt endurance ride
a ride from the US Capitol Building to the Cabin John Trails just outside the beltway

that article should be out in a week or so at your favorite Mid-Atlantic bicycle shop or gym
if they do not carry SPOKES.... ask em
it is free
what have they got to lose
the cycling culture has everything to gain

this weekend past I did a fraction of that ride
only riding more road rather than dirt
starting in bethesda and ending home
rather than the capitol building back to capitol building
okay... I did not do that ride
but I did ride to Cabin John and then back home this weekend

the spring weather was awesome
my bike and my body held up pretty good
was a tad hung over
managed to sweat it out

that is a fantastic dirt ride...
I wonder how much of a dirt ride could be created to get out to Schaeffer Famrs?
how would that work?
maybe I will toy with that idea
I have heard it talked about
wonder what the route from downtown DC to Schaeffer would be.....

its a boy

its a boy

she's just a girl

its my life

a gwen quiz
is she hot? (yes)
is she cool? (yes)
what more questions are there?


around the corner

day two of a three day weekend

here is is sunday afternoon
only halfway through the second day of a three day weekend
laying low hanging out with my younger son, grant
he woke up in a mood from a nap... a short nap
not ready to try and entertain him I offered to calm his mood with Corduroy

it is funny
dean love movies
dean wakes up and requests a movie...
dean gets ready for bed and he requests a movie...
he does not get the movie... but he is persistent in his requests
grant on the other hand can not be bothered
well... other than the short film Corduroy
Corduroy is his buddy
corduroy is a children's book that was converted into a film

dean is at the Nationals game with his grandfather
maybe when they get back we will all go swimming
we went swimming this morning
but... why not swim again this afternoon
after all, this is Memorial Day weekend... grilling poolside is an American tradition!

so... her I am blogging and watching a set of short films with my two year old son grant
letting my body recover from the classic combination of a late night of drinking followed by a hot day out on the bike
hot.... well, only in comparision to the very moderate and pleasant spring we have been experiencing

earlier today we went to my dad's house
it was a good way to kill the morning
also a good way to drop dean off to go to the baseball game
go nats.... and some cotton candy

we all swam
my boys, my wife, and my dogs all in my dad's pool
my dad's dog will not go into the pool... some lab
after some swimming dean took off with grandpa for a baseball game
the rest of us stayed behind
I cooked up some dogs and sausages for my stepmother... her visiting cousins... and my immediately family
we all ate like Americans
like the european americans we are
there was a variety of sausages
then lisa went with grant to the grocery store then home to take a nap

hold on... corduroy is over
snuck in Harold and the Purple Crayon
grant has no interest... grant only wants to see Corduroy

before lisa drove away with grant and the car I unloaded the geared surly karate monkey with front shock and jumped into some basic riding apparrell.... the basic lycra super hero costume
lisa pulled out the driveway in the car
I pulled out the driveway in the other direction on the bike

without much time I decided I would ride from my dad's house in Bethesda to the Cabin John Trails just outside the beltway
I just wrote an article for SPOKES magazine about riding from the Capitol Building to this same set of trails
this would be an abreviated version of that ride
but... this ride would contain some similar elements of carlessness
riding the bike rather than putting in on the car
although not from home and not from the center of dc
this would still be a solid endurance ride with some fun dirt involved ride

in less than twenty minutes I was at the trailhead
the route was made less aggressive by avoiding the cars by guessing my way through unkown whitman territory
lots have changed
yet lot is the same since I guessed my way through these roads 20 some years ago
after some scary shoulder riding on River Road.... it was the trailhead to cabin john just outside the beltway
not far into the trail I could see that the folks from MORE had been in here doing their trail thing
a fallen log had been removed and some rerouting had been done
as well as some well wornness to the trails showing that there has been a decent amount of traffic on these trails

the trails flowed
I rode a fairly mechnical set of loops
feeling spry
starting to gain some confidence on the bike
tried to keep off the bike
allowed the bike to leave the ground a few times
marveled at the proximity of these trails to the house I grew up in and my ignorance to their presence
I day dreamed about trail rides decades ago and conversations of these trails but my inability to ever piece together where they were
there had been mention of them
but I had always thought that people were talking about trails further down River Road deeper into Potomac Maryland

I ran several repeats of some of the internal loops behind the Locust Nature Center
went past the toddler park and the miniture steam engine
watched the clock and estimated my return
rode the dirt for roughly an hour twenty then rode the shoulder of River Road back into DC
it was a rewarding ride
a great little ride
now to piece together a ride for tomorrow am at Gambril State Park

there goes the neighborhood

last night headed home I approached a light a mile or so from my house
the light was green
there was a green turn arrow
I pulled up behind a car in the middle of the intersection and waited for them to turn
time passed
the light was green and the turn arrow was still green
yet the car in front of me did not go

the kids were fidgeting in the backseat
I was itching to get home
the turn arrow went to yellow
before it turned red I gave a little hit on the horn
not a love tap
not an a-hole heavy lean
but a honk with the horn just he same

the car in front of me woke up then made the turn
we made the turn following behind them and I admited to my wife that my actions were partially dictated by the stickers on the back of this car in front of me
somehow the Nine Inch Nails and TOOL stickers did not match up to the two Bush stickers

the car sped out of view
we caught them at the base of the hill
then followed them up the hill
they got away from us then when we got to our block this same white car was pulled into a space
the car driver was grimacing with his nose nearly pressed to the car door glass as he gave me the finger
ten cars ahead I went to pull into a space
then lisa said lets go check him out

I said nothing would be gained
but... I figured there was nothing to lose
so we made a turn around and cruised on pass

as I got closer to the car I broke right in with a
I honked trying to alert you to the green turn arrow
at this my bald brother rushed my car
cussing and screaming
I told him to mellow out
while my wife cussed over me right back
my kids in the back seat witness to it all

the encounter went just as I had feared
before I left I admited that my honking at his car was more due to my question of the somewhat incongruent stickers on his car rather than his blindness
I welcomed him to the neighborhood and then went and parked my car

it was all bad
nothing was gained
I tired to explain to my wife that that was not good behavior in front of the children
then tried to explain to her that a woman can not cuss at a man with her husband present
unless they are expecting their husband to get into a fist fight for them

we went inside
I immediately wrote a note then leashed the dogs then went down the block
the note went like this

my bad
you may be correct, I may have been a little heavy on the horn
it was inappropriate of me to blur two completely separate issues
-your neighbor with the orange car

I wonder how the reception of the note went?

it bums me out to see another W Sticker in the neighborhood
honestly.... in these times.... I do not think that political bumper stickers are such a good idea
that mini-road rage incident is a perfect example how things can steam roll out of control

I dream of a 25 letter alphabet
an alphabet without W


parked vehicles

some everyday images around town

teasing... everything in moderation

this saturday morning went as most planned saturday mornings go...

there was the early morning evacuation of lisa for her Ashtanga Yoga class
which leaves me in roll of mr. mom
where I scramble about trying to get the kids, clothed and fed
trying to get the dogs walked
while trying to keep the boys from killing each other and tearing the house apart

this morning went along better than most saturday mornings go
the boys were clothed and fed
the dogs had been walked and fed as well
our evacuation was ahead of schedule
I gathered a toddler survival kit that included capri suns, diapers, and wipes
tried to scramble together a digital camera
was able to find a blank SD card but was unable to find double A batteries

as it got closer to our scheduled departure time I started scanning for my car keys
in the morning's adventures I had seen the keys sometime somewhere
but now I had forgotten where I had seen them
so I scanned everywhere

time passed and my anxiety increased
my loops became less scattered and more methodical
I checked my yoga bag and my toddler survival kit
then looped the house from top to bottom again
this process was repeated several times
all the while breaking up fights between the boys
and trying to server their individual needs
more peaches
milk instead of apple juice
those sorts of things

the time was passing and yoga was starting to seem less likely
I came down from one last loop only to find I had to gather the children from the basement
once in the basement I asked the boys to come upstairs and aid me in one last look for the keys
as I plotted morning alternatives for entertaining myself and the kids

before heading up stairs from the basement I asked the boys to check their pockets for the keys
with a grin as wide as the montana sky dean smiled
then like a magician he pulled the keys from his pocket

I was tricking you dean said

yes, I was tricked
I was tricked into scanning the whole house
running about like a chicken with my head cut off
digging in the trash
starting to question my own sanity

I laughed with dean and then told him
teasing is fine
but you do not want the joke to go on two long
if the joke goes too long it is no longer funny

this little trick has had me grinning all day
also has me thinking I need to make a back up set of keys
as I think the boys teased me once before with the other set of keys
that teasing has gone on long enough
those keys will more than likely show up after the purchase of our next car



mom and the boys

a man at the farmer's market

a ride synopsis

this has been a tough week
a combination of factors
sick/the kids are sick, the kids are not sleeping/we are not sleeping
and well
the job can be a swift kick in the groin sometimes

today I was able to get out of work early
guess I can not complain too much
got out of work early and got on the bike
did not feel like riding at all
but... just like a kid going to school
I got to do it
there just is no choice

rode the my six year old cross bike to work thinking I would be able to fit in some loops in the hills of rock creek park
although I do not use heart rate monitors or power taps
I know that I suck at climbing and well... if I am going to want to ride my bike up the hill on dirt I need to ride my bike up the hills on pavement
so I left work and headed for the nature center in rock creek park

I had left early enough that I thought that I would have time for some ups and backs on Ross Drive and still be able to intercept my babysitter and snag my younger son and pick up my older son from school
well... as my 45minutes of hills was growing to be more of an hour I recognized a familar form

although I had never seen this man on a bike before we had talked that he was a cyclist
he fancies himself a former commuter
so rather than floating down the hill and continuing straight towards home
I turned it around and started to reel him in

this was a classic humbling moment
so I am doing this hill one more time after a handful of times
I pass on man snailing along in his lotto peacock suit

just as I am feeling smug I feel that I am being passed
a rider moving effortlessly moves past at twice my speed
this rider drifts into the distance and passes the person I was seeking to catch
this pass of the faster rider alters the pace of my rolling destination
so I need to pick up my pace
as my reel him in pace was no longer fast enough

without the passing of too much road I am approaching the rear wheel of my destination
with an upbeat tone I ask the rhetorical question.... is that jack lastname?
sure enough it was
I moved along side of him and we paced with each other
he was on a newer fresher jamis nova
we talked about bikes then I reintroduced myself

I am that guy sending you emails about the traffic on blah blah blah street
the man I have just reeled in is a representative of our neighborhood on some level
we chat about the "study" that is going to happen
I am pleased to hear that there is some sort of consideration
although a "study" could be a discussion
and well... then the next day there could be some action

we ride along side of each other
the topic changes
we talk bikes
I kid him about the guy who he had passed us both
and how his pace changed after the pass
it was a good ride
I altered my route and rode for maybe 30 minutes with him
his fitness impressed me
apparently he was even faster and stronger prior to a spinal injury that occured in a bike to car incident
an incident where he was on the bike
that incident had kept off the bike for a few years

it was a good ride
with some pleasant conversation about life and gears
cycling gear and the state of the the world and how it views bicycles

our final blocks into the neighborhood cause us to split
he is going a few block longer to avoid traffic and the steep climb
I roll back to a lump of trash under the bridge
someone has dumped some trash under the bridge
a rusty adult bike of no interest has already been tucked aside by someone who will more than likely return for it later
there is a 12 inch children's bike that I can not resist taking home
I ride the last mile or so home with a pink and white kids bike on my handlebars

I get home and walk the dogs
then I join lisa and the boys for a trip across the alley for a friday night bbq fest
it is a friday night alley thing
no bikes for the kids on this night
it is all about swords
lots of swords
lots of sword play
lots of kids crying from having their knuckles cracked by a friendly whack of a sword

a great start to a long weekend

the idea of the "study" has me excited
maybe they will actually do something
but I am sure that there will have to be all sort of bureacracy before they can sweep the leaves off the sidewalk
too much talk....
not enough action...
I hope this study takes into account the major cycling traffic on this road

guess I will still draw up some of my ideas for correcting these speed problems
as it can not hurt

fat across america

washington post article about steve vaught and his walk

his journal/blog

the journey is the destination....
and well...
I think he needs to tell the tale as it happened
hitching a ride in an old pickup can be as valuable a moment as walking 100 miles in the desert
he needs to just tell it as it happened


emapthy is a learned emotion

it is my contention that empathy is learned emotion
the sad thing
not too many people are teaching this emotion these days

in a simple example
the absence of empathy can be seen how car drivers treat pedestrians and bicyclists
on a more child-like level I see it in my two year old son
grant will approach me
daddy I broke your sunglasses
daddy I broke your computer
in each case he is correct and cute
the information is there
but there is no emotion
not trying to guilt trip this kid
but I will try to teach him to be considerate of others

when I drive I try to empathize with those around me
even the other car drivers
I can not read their mind
but I do know how I would feel in thier situation

penn and teller: manners

penn and teller are doing their bullshit thing
this week it is something on manners
it is a trip
I saw a guy with the same anger disorder as me
and they showed that queen of the sky blogger lady
very funny stuff
I have not used the television as a mirror so much since the last time I watched the larry david show
no that is not good

the shows are good
but having them work as a mirror
well... that is not so good
okay... it is good to look in the mirror
we all should look in the mirror more often
no... not to fix our hair or brush our teeth
but so that we can police ourselves

the cycling cog

some of this stuff may have been stolen from an old favorite.... tino's place

love your bike


a blog that I just been reading
oil is for sissys
yoga for cyclists


that is why we are here...
to share information and ideas

here is some information

and this
transportation alternatives

not sure of the pound to dollar conversion

not sure of this product
but it seems to follow a decent philosophy
I think there needs to be an inexpensive bike with a minimalistic view
a single speed not for the single speeder
a single speed for the around town rider who would not change gears anyway
history of edinburgh bicycle coop

bikes for everyday...

I am always amazed at people's notion of what a bike should cost
there is no logic to it
they just feel that a bicycle should cost X amount of dollars
which is usually a few hundred dollars less than a bicycle actually costs

these same people may buy a hundred dollar tie, a several hundred dollar sweatshirt, or think nothing of a several hundred dollar dinner for two
at times you can reason with this type of shopper
talk of name brands, quality, you get what you pay for... that sort of think
then they can pull out the Gold Card and make a purchase... maybe even after some slick kid with some shop speak talked them up to a level that they do not need
but... what about the common consumer.... the everyday person looking for the everyday bike
the person lured into the sub hundred dollar purchase because that is all they can afford
what about them?

I think that the bicycle manufactures should be more considerate of the consumer when designing bikes for this market
all of these dual suspension bikes for a hundred buck could have put their energy elsewhere
rather than weighty suspension systems
these bikes could have been simple machines with utilitarian design
as these riders are not looking for a mountain bike
they are looking for a way to get to and from work

why not offer them a bike with less gears?
zero suspension?
a rack and some fenders?

why not a single speed with moderate gearing and these commuter features?

are the people on the flashy Huffy Bikes and Paciffic Bikes drawn towards the look of these machines or are they drawn to the price of these machines
I think it is the price
if the dual suspension bike was removed from the market and a more sensible craft were in its place
well, the low end buyer would be riding a bicycle instead of a rocking horse
energy would be going into forcing the bike to roll forward rather than boucing back and forth
there would be less to break
there would be less un-needed weight

the low end market is a vital market
so many people need an affordable bike

but... why is the affordable such a piece of crap?
a mountain bike that can not be taken mountain biking?
why not an around town bike that can be ridden around town?


another morning blog entry created while my little blonde monkeys splashed in the tub
they got five more minutes
I got to blog for five more minutes
they got to splash all the water out of the tub
I got to finish my entry
we each got what we waneted
well... I wanted them TO KEEP IT IN THE TUB
but... that may be asking too much


always curious about this sort of stuff

this guy erwin bakker alledgedly raced in europe under a different name
this is with a lifetime ban from racing

the curious thing...
is he still cheating?


if he is banned
why does he have sponsors?


that whole rosie ruiz thing is weird to me

in college I played soccer
our team was not so good
I was a starter but clearly not the best man on the team
we lost almost all the games we played
all I could do was my part
my part and more... all I could do was play every minute as if the score was zero zero and we had a chance to win

during this time I had a variety of friends with a variety of interests
most of us shared one great interest in common.... drinking
along with drinking came talking shit

there was this guy on the sailing team who had a pretty solid record on the sailing team
he sailed collegiately
he sailed internationally
I knew nothing about sailing
so little about sailing that I often toss it into the lump with golf and that question...
is it a sport?
any way... not hear to push buttons and ruffle feathers
back to my drunken point
so.... this guy went to europe and where ever to race dingy sailboats

somewhere along the line I had heard about some rules to sailing
something about physics or kinetics
something about rocking the boat and pumping the sail
apparently this guy was caught breaking these rules

we talked about winning and winners like rosie ruiz's
a combination of being drunk now and being drunk then has the memory blurred
but I think he felt win at any cost
that would be like snatching the king before starting a game of chess and running away
that would not be winning in a game of chess
would it?


yesterday work held me late
just a few minutes late
yet late enough to deny me anything more than a straight shot home on the bike

I rolled into my alley to get swarmed by an assortment of small children screaming out my older son's name
after breaking free of the mob I got home to find the kids having dinner
or maybe an afternoon snack
so I allowed them to eat

as the momentum of ingestion slowed I made mention of the kids in the alley
the theme was swords
the time it took to get dean and grant focused enough to gather swords and shoes
we arrived to a vacant alley
we found one boy standing by his back gate.... locked in... with his mother yelling from inside the house that dinner was ready
we had scheduled things wrong
we ate while they played
everyone was eating while we wanted to play

in an effort to entertain the boys I proposed heading up to the corner store on the bikes to get a replacement candy necklace for the one that broke earlier that week
the boys agreed
no helmet
no bike
the boys got their helmets on and got on their bikes

each boy has a bit of a cold
the slight weakness of the cold made the slight climbs tough for the boys
dean complained grant moaned
soon dean was riding
while I was carrying grant's bike
dean rode up and back as I alternated between pushing grant on the bike, carrying grant's bike as grant walked, and carrying grant's bike with grant on my shoulders

that is how things go sometimes...

we got gummy bears instead of a candy necklace
just as well
the candy necklace was not available

no photos
not everyday is a photo day
would have been tough to take pictures and carry my son and his bike all at the same time

back to finish this thought

on this sidewalk/alley tour of the neighborhood I tried to help my children to listen for the cars
listen for a car with a running engine ready to back up in the alley
listen for a car headed down the hill towards the intersection
so much can be learned from listening
listening is a key to anticipation

more on hot dogs....


from redlack
in today's washington post
enjoy the dogs



bike collectors


a bike collector's blog
this was shared with me by hound dog
although I went to high school with one of the contributors of the ebykr site
I am not sure I know him
although is very attractive older sister was in my graduating class

check out the images and the words


track stars

a closer look
or a look through the gwadzilla archive will show some sweet custom stars on an already sweet classic bridgestone track bike

the purple pig


bookmarking this for myself
feel free to take a look yourself


some snap shots

while I drank my coffee

here is a blog I went to via Faia
coffee gone and so is the time
best I put on some socks and walk the dogs
as it is near the time to punch the clock


not a bad night

had plans to go to a friend's birthday party
wanted to go to the party
not just for the beer and the crabs
but to gather with friends to celebrate a friend's birthday
well... adulthood shuffled the schedule
had to go into work tonight
but.... did not have to go into work until after I got home

rode the fixed gear for a little over an hour
the low gear spin is good for the multi-use bike paths
too slow to get mixed up in any tailgate racing

more about my evening...

the little prince

the little prince

this book was read to me as a child
saw the film in the theater as a small boy
read the book again in my youth and then my teens
never studied french so I did not have to read it in french
but I did read it again as an adult a few times
I think I need to find it and read it again
as I still do not understand it

harold and maude

harold and maude
a fantastic film
a wonderful soundtrack

a must see
a must see to be seen over and over again

a recommendation from a friend


I have seen a movie based off one of his books
books are usually better than the movies
that movie was pretty darn good

his books are also better than his blog



while road riding the ability to hear what is around you is part of feeling what is around you...
that is really two senses... not one
cranking music directly in your ears will not only remove the ability to fully take advantage of those senses
but the music in your ears will also rob you of your focus

while mountain biking the dangers will vary...
sure there is not the fear of a soccer mom wiping her skirt clean because she spilt her coffee while checking her blackberry
there will be cyclist trying to pass you as well as cyclist heading your way around that blind curve
seconds could be the difference between a clean pass and locking handlebars thus locking horns

in addition to crashing into another cyclist, a hiker, or any other life on the trail
there are the sounds of the bike
that clicking of a derailer mal adjusted, pulling slowly into the spokes as the limit screws are poorly set....
the first two clicks are warnings
the next sound will be your deraileur being drawn into your rear wheel killing your wheel and your deraileur hanger
or a stick in your wheel....
the hiss of a slow leak...
the popping of the chain...
the bike makes noise
much of the noise is a good warning
listen to the bike while on the trail
listen to the music when headed to and from the trail
or better yet
put the head phones on and stay on the trainer in your basement

riding at schaeffer

out at schaeffer farms I had a great ride
broke my own personal rule of the buddy system
but.... I have been breaking that rule for some time now
normally the solo dirt rides are because I am riding home from work
no.... I am not perfect... I am flawed... but I am trying

while at schaeffer I was amazed at how many people had headphones on while riding
the risk of a head on collision on these popular trails is high
headphones increase that risk

I had a few near head on collisions with the same guy with headphones
he did a little trail blazing to avoid me
don't kill a plant to give me more space
stay on the trail
but more importantly
keep your focus
do not risk another person's safety because you need to hear Poison's Greatest Hits while you are looping around the trails
leave the iPod at home
the sounds of the trail around you are enough to entertain the brain

Heller's Bakery

I wonder....
I wonder if that wheel was stolen off that bike?
odd to think that someone would climb up there to snag a rear wheel
but... it could happen

no helmet.... no bike

there are some basic rules in my house...

one simple rule is
the kids love their bikes
little grantman loves the bike as much as dean
but unlike dean
grant is adverse to the helmet
yet I impose the NO HELMET... NO BIKE rule on him just the same
unless... it is just a little set of circles on the back deck

I think we may need to get Grant a new helmet
maybe the one he has is not comfortable
or maybe he just likes the wind in his hair

riding around the neighborhood


schaeffer farms

when lisa got back from bruch with friends this afternoon I was feeling pretty lazy
feeling classically male lazy
thinking that while she took the boys to back to back birthday events I could take a nap
but... I knew that my time is more valuable than that
the window of opportunity was large enough for a trip to Schaeffer Farms

although I was nearly dozing off with grant in my arms as dean woke me every three seconds to show me the latest development of the Mr. Potatohead he was constructing I knew that I should uses this time more wisely

so whle lisa headed north in the element with the kids I jumped into some city bikes orange and gold lycra and slid the geared karate monkey into the back of her passat wagon
sure the element would be easier with the roof rack but passat will get me there
lisa prefers the element for the kids... why argue?

my efficiency amazed myself
usually my inefficiency amazes me
just as I am at the door ready to roll off I wake up to the absence of my cycling shoes
that would have been a serious bonehead move

click here to hear more

a pretty darn good weekend

the weekend went by pretty fast
it often amazes me on saturday night that it is only saturday night
then when sunday night comes I think... it is sunday already... the weekend is over?

here if is only sunday night and I have a hard time recalling what happened friday night

friday night was pretty standard
as I think of last friday night I get the image of many of the last friday nights

friday is a big night of the week on our block
or at least fridays have been a big night of the week at this point in time
friday is cook out in the alley night
the parents sip drinks while the kids ride their bikes
or hit each other with swords
or climb and jump on and off of stuff
while the parents sip drinks
everybody eats hot dogs

there are races
there are hikes in the woods
there are races in the woods
the ages vary so I stagger the starts
it amazes me how the staggered starts chance on the kids all arriving into my arms at the same time
it is always more simple with a tie than with a definite winner
they all want to be winners
the winner of different age categories or congratulations for racing hard usually works well enough
but there are races with false starts and sore losers
it is all part of learning to life life and play games
everyone is fast
everyone is smiling

for more about the kids... click here