Rants on Cycling and on Life


summer is here... summer is almost gone

summer is here
summer is almost gone

yet I have not marked the beginnning of summer with a trip to Ocean City Maryland or a trip to the Bethesda Crab House for "all you can eat" crabs
sure we have done summer things
but we have not done these things there were one regular summer rituals

my riding buddy chris redlack sent me this.... No Pinch
I thought for sure it would have to do with 29inch wheels and 29 inch tubeless tires
it had to do with the Honda Element

Old bay is great on corn
I did manage to race all of the summer series of Wednesday at Wakefield
there have been countless trips to the pool
hot days spraying each other with the hose, swatting mosquitos, and splashing in the kiddie pool
but... the passing of summer without burning the bottom of my feet on the hot sand of Ocean City
well... it just would not be summer
that would be like not drinking a green beer on St. Patricks Day or not getting a heart shaped card on Valentines day
okay... I can not remember the last time I had green beer


carrying my banner... waving my flag... laughing at myself

I crack myself up...

had I seen me now from the perspective of myself from a few years prior I would laugh at myself...

I carry my banner
I wave my flag

my car is coated with all sorts of mountain bike and cycling stickers
it seems that nearly all of my t-shirts are cycling related
what is next?
a cycling tattoo?
a vanity plate for my car that says something cycling

a year or so ago I sent a poke in the direction of fellow DCMTB team member Joe Foley about his collection of race numbers
I asked if he saved all his race numbers
the other day I was trying to clean up my space in the basement
when I noticed all my race numbers
I too am not collecting all these race numbers
I just have not thrown them away yet

I have become someone I would have criticised a few years ago
me and all my gear
walking into a party with a baseball cap with a cycling emblem, t-shirt with a cycling image, and even cycling socks
hey, look at me!
I am a cyclist!

it was not planned
it just happened

don't be fooled
the part has not become the whole
the part... is a big part of me
cycling is a big part of my life
it is a big part of my life now
it was a big part of my life then
I plan on keeping cycling a big part of my future

what we see... what we think... what is true...

this is a sad story
a sad story for so many reasons

a little girl was killed
which first and foremost is the saddest part of all

the family members were victims
the family members were suspects
the facts or what appeared to be facts pointed towards the family

just like so many things we see in the news
we get an idea of what is the truth
we hold to that as the truth
even if we do not have all the facts
the family of JonBenet spent the last 10 years with a big red guilty stamp on their foreheads

maybe landis is innocent as well?

Mr. Peabody's Apples a book by Madonna that touches on a similar topic

creepy ode from creepy guy

Washington Post Article on local Bike Trail

W & OD trail in NOVA
an article in the Washington Post
I have not read this entire article

yes... bike paths are dangersous
yes... we need more bike paths
lots more bike paths

wash cycle

ode to timmyp



grantman in rocky mountain national park

grant a very strong hiker
the only thing stronger than his hiking is his ability to be stubborn
on this trip he was quite stubborn
stubborn about not hiking

dean in rocky mountain national park

note the gear
the walkie talkie
the camelback
at five he is quite the hiker
he hikes almost as well as he swims
and this boy is a fishA



that is meredith
she is a cyclist
a messenger to be more specific
she can be seen whipping around the city streets of washington dc

I did not take this photo of meredith
I did take this photo of meredith

here is meredith at myspace

last night I saw meredith racing around at the summer Wednesday Night Time Trials and BBQ in Rock Creek Park

there was a small frame that i was trying to unload on her
so I told her that my place was on her way home
she came by with her boyfriend John on their ride home from the summer fun in the park

in their short pass through my house I gave them a little intro to my world
the boys got their hellos as they took a break from their ink pads and animal stamps
as we talked about photos from asia and this little frame that my wife no longer needs
my younger son approached
two year old grant who was just boasting about being clean and careful had become a big blue mess
I had to shoo my visitors away and stop the madness
a little ink washed away in the tub
i was just relieved that i did not burn the pizza

it is tough for me to keep it together with the kids for just a few hours
how do people keep the kids alive when they are with them all day?

inner tube at CBS

Inner Tube from CBS
this is pretty cool
the only problem...

I do not watch any of the shows listed here

Floyd Landis' Father-In-Law Found Dead in North Park

sad news from San Diego

Floyd Landis' father inlaw dead from an apparent suicide

what does this have to do with Floyd?
I am not sure

corporate identities and corporate logos

item branding
corporate logos
corporate identities

this stuff really works...
just as the octagon for the STOP sign is made for those that do not know how to read can understand its meaning
so can the corporate logo...
my kids know Coca Cola means soda... so deliver trucks or box cars on trains with Coca Cola printed on the side are soda trucks or soda trains
the Champion logo on my socks was recognized by Dean as something that was also on his sweatshirt
Dean can go into a shoe store and find all the shoes made by Keen

it is all very interesting to watch

two year old Grant amzes me with this pairing of logo with product
it happens with stuff all the time
and not always for the best...

as displayed in the movie SuperSize Me the golden arches of McDonalds become part of the children's world quite quickly
although I have never been to McDonalds with my kids
the occassional treat with their grandparents or with mom on a road trip has solidified all this in their mind
and it is not about the food
they are not drawn to the salty fries
it is the toys that they seek
they tear open the happy meal and start playing with the toy long before they go for the salty fries
and they do eat all of their salty fries

kids pick up on subtle details that we tend to miss
things that reside in our subconcious appear in their concious

it is important for adults to be aware of what is exposed to our children

in this era of a fuel crisis and an obesity epidemic I try to be alert to what my children are tunned into
having my son playing with a toy Hummer that he got in a Happy Meal does not make me happy
if someone was to discuss the Hummer with my son Dean they would soon learn that he has been told that I do not care for this car due to its lack of fuel effiecieny and its impraticality for everyday use
just as I have told him that McDonalds is okay for a treat... but not good for a growing boy and everyday consumption

enough with my soap box
got to focus on work
lost the train of thought... there was something Grant did this morning that gave birth to this idea
but that idea has long since been lost
I will hit publish and post before I get into how my son points out all the smokers to me now days and tells me that they are idiots for smoking even though they know it can kill them


Judy's Time: should be shortened into a beautiful PSA

Judy's Time should be shortened into a beautiful PSA
it is already a wonderful film... but shortened it would make a wonderful Public Service Announcement

the film is compiled
the clips have been shortened and edited
just shorten it and edit again
then add some narration

erin flannery made this film several years ago about her mother
erin and her brothers and sisters can alternate the narration of each seen

maybe start with some stills

{a picture of judy flannery}
erin's voice: this is judy flannery

{transitions into a slide show of her with her husband; maybe a vacation shot... maybe a wedding shot, maybe judy just looking young and pretty}
mr flannery's voice: judy was my wife

{shots of judy with her kids}
the voice of her children: judy was our mother

{then move to some motion shots of Judy running and working out}
erin or other children could talk about her discovery of running and then running races at 40

{the pictures continue... some ironman shots... some of her medals and awards and her achievements}
the story is told

then the story unfolds
judy's accomplishments
judy's inspirational energy
judy as a mom
judy as an athlete
judy being judy

then the tragic end
a description of the circumstances of a car running head on to a line of training cyclists
head on?
yes, head on
what may have been a sick twisted joke going terribly wrong
the details are told

then it is explained
that each cyclist is not an obstacle
no each cyclist is a human being
these human beings can be a wife, a mother, an athlete, a friend, an inspiration
judy was all these things
but she is these things no more
as a car driver did not see the cyclists as people comprised of flesh and bones
this car driver like so many car drivers did not see the human element to the cyclist

or something to that effect
I would not be involved in the project
I am not a film maker, Judy's daughter Erin is the film maker
and certainly
the members of the family could write the script and retell the story with more heart and more emotion
so that maybe
just maybe
some people could grow to understand that cyclists not only have a right to the road
cyclists have a right to life

I ache.... I will be okay... but I think I will ache badly tomorrow

tonight i got on the bike
things were a mixture of opportunities
had initially thought that I had to head straight home to hang with Grant whild Lisa took Dean with her to a school function
in the end Lisa decided to take both boys
perhaps she was giving me some me time before the weekend
as this weekend she will be on a girl's weekend
while I will be playing Mr. Mom
this freed me up to ride until around 8PM

whether feeling like riding or not feeling like riding I had a window of opportunity to ride
had ridden the Surly Karate Monkey to work
considered riding home and getting on the Specialized Tri-Cross cyclocross bike and do some road miles
knew that my old and tired Jamis Nova cross bike was not an option... as I broke that frame earlier this week
the notion of riding home and swapping out the bike lost out to taking the single speed on dirt

spun through some traffic and warmed up as I got to the dirt
was not feeling like dirt
but thirty minutes into it I was pretty into it
mixing some road climbs with some dirt single track I worked the same stretch of trail

once saturated with that section I moved to the next
on the next section I was taking a turn at a fun and fast pace
guess the burms of wakefield had spoiled me
no burm
I try to noodle my way at high speed through a few rocks on the curve
the bike stops
I go flying
in an almost concious effort to protect my shoulder I retract my arm
nothing breaks my fall
nothing but my hip

as fast as I hit the ground I am up again and running down the trail
limping and running and trying to access the damage
the shoulder is fine
but what is this feeling on my hip
I feel at the other hip checking for symetry
nothing feels out of place
just very painful
I use the energy and adrenalin to head for home
I decide to turn back rather than continue forward
that is the closest way home

fort dupont in on the other side of town
there will still be a few miles to ride before I get to move to the Rest part of RICE
Rest Ice Compression Elevation

before I can start the pedal home I have to make it so my recently tacoed front wheel can spin in between the arms of my front fork
I take the wheel out and stand on it
try to spin it then stand on it again
with great force I slam the rim on a fallen tree on the trail side
once the wheel is wobbling without contacting the fork I am able to ride home
ah... disc brakes

I take a mellow ride home
avoiding speed and avoiding cars
I get home to a house without children
my window of opportunity got shattered by the crash
a hope for a three hour ride was cut short into two
hopefully it is nothing more than a bruise
things are already feeling tight
the ice pack is in place

will have to have that wheel rebuit
will have to take it easy for the next few days

tough week for me and the bike
a broken frame, a broken chain, and a broken me
hope I am not broken
broken was the theme of last year

Adams Falls

Adams Falls in Grand Lake, Colorado
just outside of Rocky Mountain National Park
a short hike that was recommended to me by a blogger named Richard
well... not sure if he still contributes to Cyclelicious
thanks for the tip just the same

we did this hike several times
as nice as the falls were...
there was a meadow a little further
and by little I mean a few steps further
that meadow was epic
there are shots on a different SD card at home
Dean took some shots of me on a hike that we did sans grant and mommy

we did this hike a number of times as it was so close to the cabin we were staying in
and when I say cabin
I mean mountain house

driving through Rocky Mountain National Park

no i did not feed the animals
grant just woke up from his nap
dean is enjoying the use of the camelback
we are all standing 2 miles high


this was shared with me this morning in an email from a friend of a friend

it is very Chicken Soup for the Soul-ish
for some reason that type of stuff often appeals to me

give it a read...

(not sure of the original source... I just googled it and linked to that blog)

that story from Frank's Blog on THE STRONGEST DAD IN THE WORLD
is also worth a read

neither are original posts
yet both are worth sharing

drunk cyclist hit by drunk driver?

the drunk cyclist
the creator of the LIVEWRONG bracelet was the victim of a hit and run while on his bike the other day

apparently he is on the mend and made a few news appearances
I would like to see a PSA come out of this
I need to talk to the WABA folks about working with the DOT on some Cycling Safety PSAs


Product Review? a few things that suck

Product Review: Product Bashing
let me make this quick

here are a few things that suck...

no it does not suck that my frame broke
I rode that bike for several years
I got some good miles out of that bike
there is a good chance that this frame will be warrantied
if that does not happen
I will think about my next move from there

no, here are a few things that suck
was spinning around town on my way home from work on the Surly Karate Monkey
my rigid single not my geared with front suspension monkey
that would be the skid mark brown bike
not the army green bike
both have very big 29 inch wheels
with disc brakes in front and v-brakes in the rear

but it is not the Monkey that sucks...

what sucks is riding home from work
leaving later than already late departure time
over spinning the monkey on the city streets
splitting lanes and timing lights
going up and down a few curbs taking some nice turns and not being shy about having some fun

turning onto a short steep block of a climb hear a crack or maybe a snap and feel a moment of resistence on my pedal stroke
immediately think that I have broken an axle
hmmmm..... a broken axle... that has not happened to me in a while
I am off the bike
spinning the rear wheel
and trying to spread the rear triangle
no spread of the rear triangle
but I feel a little resistence at a part of the chains roatation
after the broken rhythm I see without any need for close examination
it is a broken link on the chain
worse yet it is a broken power link

immediately I curse to myself
as I know that I am without a power link or any spare links
even if I have a few spare links or a power link in my pack
those links or that power link would not be as broad or as big as the SRAM single speed chain

I walk the bike over to a spot where I can try and figure out a repair

my pack unloads like dennis the menace's pockets
so much that I would never need
nothing that I really need
I have some stuff that looks like it should work
but a few things fall short

the first thing to fall short is the SRAM Power link
it was not a broken chain
it was a disassembled Power Link
as I walked the bike I focused on the link that was out of place
watching to make sure if it feel off I knew where it dropped
the broken link was clearly the power link
the brasey gold stooded out against the clean nickel finish of the other links

I flipped the bike upside down
with the bike in a its primitive yet natural repair stand I took hold of the link
first thinking the link had come undone
thinking that it was as easy as forcing the link to lock in place
then only to learn that the power link was broken at the point where the cylinder should be fused to one of the links flat figure eight sides
then it was revealed to me
at the 12 Hours of Lodi Farms this year as I raced with Chris Redlack on a duo team it was not a matter of my link coming apart
it was a matter of the link falling apart
that sucks
so I took the logic of fool me once shame on you
fool me twice shame on me
or once bitten twice shy
either way I did not want three times to be a charm

so I pulled out my Alien tool for an old school chain shortening

I made a quick measure of the distance
matching up the links
figuring I was able to remove the minimum and be able to bind the chain
hoping that with the wheel pushed all the way forward I could fasten the chain and ride home
(if it works... it would not just take me home... chances are that is how it would just be)

so in that classic swiss army knife fashious I started to unfold the Alien multi-tool
men do love these little gadget like tools
as I worked through the many allen keys I selected the chain tool, was cautious around the sharp blade, and searched for the right size allen on the send half of the tool which was now on the ground after the dissasembly of the two halves

with the two pieces as one again I started to push the last ling apart
with the chain in my hands rather than on the bike the tool manipulated the task quite fluidly

then I got up to loosen the rear wheel
the standard single speed uses bolt on axles rather than quick release axles
so I pull out a Surly: Jethro Tool or something to that effect
a cool little tool that fits nice in the hand
pretty to the eye
pretty to a touch
has a bottle opener that I have never used
I grimace as I see this tool option over a standard box wrench with a longer handle granting more leverage

I move to the bike and try to work the tightly fastened nuts free
the amount of strength versus works in relation to the lack of leverage
the palm of my hand hurts
the tool is not as comfortable to use as it is to hold
I try one side
then the other
then the other again
questioning my direction here and there
then with a little more grit I am able to free one side
with one side free the other side is less of an issue

thinking I will have plenty of space I hap hazardly push the wheel forward
back to my knees I pull the now shorter chain
the two ends meet
but the overlap is not enough
I make sure the nuts are loose
I make sure the wheel is slid as far forward as the wheel will slide in the versitile horizontal dropouts
I try to make the ends meet
the chain is close
but not so close that I bother to try and connect the tool

I scavange my bag one last time then go for the cell phone
I call my wife to tell her I will be later than expected
I call my brother
my brother's house is closer than home
it makes more sense to work the bike like a scooter to his house
make the repair and ride home

lucky for me
not only is my brother home
but my brother has a brand new never been used SRAM chain
a SRAM single speed chain just like the one I had... only standard and not nickel plated
I accept it with promise of replacement
then head back to my temporarily lame monkey

since the bike is outside I head outside
before I even get into the repair I am so bothered by the mosquitos that I take the bug spray of the grill and tag each inch of uncovered skin
with the bolts not as tightly attached the Surly bottle opener works just fine as a wrench
then back to my squating to the knees position as I ignore the Power Link and go straight to the chain and the chain tool
I am staying old school
do not want to risk the Power Link again

I measure the desired length of the chain
pinching the link where I want to make the break
I sit back on the stairs not having to focus my eyes on the chain
feeling confident that I have measured things correctly
and that I am pinching the right spot

again the chain breaks with the use of the Alien Multi-tool with grace and speed
the block that broke into two sets of tools is rejoined into one
as an allen key is needed to turn the barrel screen that pushes the pin through the chain
the two pieces act as one pretty nicely
yet I a still craving a standard Park chain tool or even my Crank Brothers Multi tool
even the Crank Brother's tool has a lock so you do not push the pin too far
I check and test and have to try again a few times until I have pushed the pin far enough out to allow me to remove the extra unwanted line of links

I feed the chain through the frame and over the single bmx cog in the back
then I take the slack over to the front chain ring
my hands dance in opposite directions then come together
here I start to feel like I need a third hand

the two tools as one were somewhat cumbersome as I tried to link the two pieces
the chain did not seat as nicely into the tool as the tool fit into the tool
the chain did not line up as clean and as straight as I felt comfortable with
so I tried and tried to line the chain into the tool
and then start to rotate the half of the tool that fits into the allen bolt of a barrel that will push the pin that rejoins the chain as one semi-circular piece

the tool was proving that hybrids are rarely better then specialty tools
but, the Crank Brothers is a multi-tool and it serves the purpose just fine

the frustration really extended when I tried to loosen the stiff link
the standard chain tool has a dual purpose
the little know trick of the spreading of the links
well... not with this tool
old school goes further old school making a little triangle with the links and working it back and forth

the repair sucks worse than the break
although the mechanica sucks
well.... it really sucks as it appears to be defective equipment
but the repair really sucks
as it not only takes longer than it should
but it is also a more frustrating process than it should be

a straight screw driver works better than a curved one
that is why they do not make curved ones that fit safely in your back pocket

eventually the repair is finished
time to finish my ride home
with red and white flashing lights already blinking on my backpack
I turn on the velcro attached battery operated light that I bought from the Princeton Lights booth at the 24 Hours of Big Bear
thirty bucks well spent
or was it twenty bucks
either way they gave into my haggling
we both won
I got a great light and they got my money
still above cost

the rest of the ride was uneventful
the set up did not feel clean
had to loosen the barrel at the break lever to get the pads off the rim

then rolled home
opted to head through Adams Morgan again rather than towards Cleveland Park from Georgetown
figured I could go around the hill instead of down one then up one

got home
said good night to the boys
had a laugh as Dean and Grant competed to get Brutus in the bed
eventually is was more about the competition of calling the dog
and having what the other wanted
rather than having the dog in the bed
extra elation came each time Brutus jumped from bed to bed
five year old dean won brutus for longer durations as he was enjoying petting the dogs and brutus was enjoying being pet

now it is time to go to bed
wanted to work some images
but do not want to risk starting a project that may keep up up later into the night

I can get my pleasure with creating a puzzle with blocks instead of photographs
already built up a little star wars village downstairs
am thinking of some wooden blocks and some thomas the train
my brother's older son is coming over
want to have a little something for them to start the day
I already know that the star wars toys have been mentioned between the boys

maybe the little people and thomas the train will entertain younger grant
already set up in the living room
will put the train in the other room so it takes two hurricanes instead of one to destroy my projects

what was that list of things that suck?
-SRAM power links
-the chain tool on the alien multi tool
-the surly jethro tool
that may be it

monkey nuts suck as well
only someone with a geared karate monkey would know that
but anyone with a geared karate monkey will tell you that monkey nuts suck

you suck monkey nuts

accidently posted this on my roscoe tribute site
a site that has not gotten the attention that it needs
especially since brutus is going through some changes

monday night.... sounds like a broken spoke

monday night after having to work late I was running late
late for my mountain bike team meeting
it is a casual affair
but I still do not want to be late
if I push it I will only be minutes late
only a few minutes late

so I get out of the saddle and start to work the pedals
mashing the pedals like a sororiety sister burning calories on the stair master
only with lets a little more scarred and a little more bruised
just a few strokes forward
still accelerating
not yet back in the saddle
not yet spinning in a groove
I hear it
I feel it
with a strong metalic thud and a smack something popped on my back end

not sure what it was
did not feel like I hit something
was alert enough to know that I had not hit an urban obstacle
no pothole
no random trash left on the street intentionally or unintentionally

I continue with a few strokes through the intersection
the light was not quite green
but the opening was there
so I went on through before I stopped

without much thought or without much concern
I lifted the back end of my several year old Jamis Nova cyclocross bike
spun the well worn now knobbieless ritchey cyclocross tire
that old cross classic mavic open pro with a standard 105 hub
the wheel spun clean
not even coming close to the Spooky cross brakes
there was no hop
there was no visible broken spoke
I grabbed at the crisscross of the spokes as I moved the wheel in incremental rotations
the wheel seemed solid

then I played the sound back in my head
as I pictured the sound in my head I knew it was metal cracking
with the riddle revealed I smiled
no I did not smile because I broke my frame
I smiled because I solved the problem in my head

being closer to home then to the meeting I changed my course and headed for home

I rolled slowly
examining the break
watching to see how much flex occured as I coasted down the road
keep it easy fearing that a little flex could bring the now imcomplete drive side of the rear triangle into my rear wheel

got home
grabbed my pedal wrench
pulled the time pedals off the Nova and put them onto the Karate Monkey single speed
and over spun my way into Columbia Heights
arriving at the meeting a little later than planned

hope nobody was offended
will try not to break my frame next month
will try to be on time to the meeting

I race with DCMTB a civic minded mountain bike team based out of Washington, DC that is sponsored by City Bikes and Metro Gutter
we just got some new jerseys and new shorts
moving away slightly away from the design of the last many years
got away from orange and red
moved to black and red

it is a good group of guys
some of which happen to be pretty fast
but it not so much about results as it is about riding your bike

the DCMTB Blog

some blogs of some of the other folks on the DCMTB team

playing in the creek

dean and grant playing
playing in the creek
playing in the rain

another shot in the same area

it was a rainy afternoon in boulder
my kids did mind the rain as they were having too much fun slipping into the creek
lisa was regretting not buying the kids crocs sandals
as their shoes were certainly not going to dry off before the flight home scheduled for the next day

as the rain grew more steady we worked to try and corral the kids towards the car

not far south of boulder
just minutes from downtown actually
the streets were dry
it had not rained
the mountain climate is unique that way
the afternoon rains drift in and drift out
but do not engulf the whole area

we returned to our hotel and got out of our wet clothes and into our dry bathing suits
only to get wet again

common sites in boulder

some common sites in boulder colorado
homeless and cruisers
here is a homeless guy on a cruiser
well... I am guessing that he is homeless

frank's blog

Frank's Blog (strongest dad in the world post)
(with a tear jerker of a story about a father being an uber dad)
Frank's Shop at myspace
Frank at myspace

the author of that story, Rick Reilly

(I wish I had the time to ride for a few hours)
frank's PSA
sport legs


Cyclorama.... nothing to do with cycling



Behalt Cyclorama tells the Amish and Menonite story PL (Pre-Landis)


magnificient markup

ah... we love to pay more
we like to think that when we pay more we get more

which in so many cases is true

a few weeks ago I stopped by to see an old friend
she took a break from work and we went across the street to grab a soda
the choices were there CVS or Marvelous Market
I was pointing towards the CVS
but altered my course as I could see that she was leaning towards the Marvelous Market

when inside I made things easy
grabbed a bottle of Coke and a candy bar, a Bit-O-Honey to be exact
after paying my bill I examined the reciept as the finally tally seemed steep for a two product purchase

it turns out the soda was a pretty standard markup
while the candy bar was a buck sixty five

I asked if the price was correct

to my surprise the man behind the counter claimed it was correct

I asked if I should go back and get the rest of the box

the man stared back blankly

then I asked if this was the organic version of the Bit-O-Honey candy
the man still looked at me blankly

rather than bother to return the product and grab the same thing for its actual price at the CVS or the nearest corner hot dog stand I decided never to return to the world of the Magnificient Markup at the Marvelous Market

my wife and I differ on our stores of choice

lisa is drawn towards the Fresh Fields Whole Foods Market
while I would prefer to shop at Costco

while in Colorado I was pleased to find a Bit-O-Honey for sixty five cents

it was tasty
Bit-O-Honey is similar but different than Mary Jane


not name dropping... tangent hopping

the other day I posted about an old friend and his involvement in this project

les was the executive producer
I was curious if he goes by Leslie across the board
or just went by Leslie when paired with this film
as it is a chic flick
maybe the viewers would feel more comfortable thinking a chick was involved in each and every step of this film's creation

then I realized
so often I like to try and bring my stories full circle
I try to give the story some sort of relevance
then it dawned on me
it was les that first introduced me to the mountain bike
well.... it was first an article in Boys Life and then it was a commercial for a Huffy mass produced with Joe Murray's name on it... The Baja Bike.... by Joe Murray
but then during my senior year of high school it was Les who was paging through the back pages of various magazines trying to find a deal on a mountain bike

in his enteprenurial efforts he tried to get me and another friend to go in on a purchase
thinking that if he had three people order these bikes we could get a deal
if I remember correctly there were Shoguns, Specialized, or Cannondales
my savings were not as grand as his
or perhaps
my tastes were more humble

les went with the SM600 with the 24 inch rear wheel
I ended up buying a lesser bike, a Mongoose ATB
the Chrome finish was nice... I broke over a dozen of these bikes
Mongoose was good enough to warranty them each and every time
perhaps if I had purchased a more expensive bike I would not have suffered these issues
(actually I broke some higher end bikes as well)

les and I went riding at various local spots
we got mud on our bikes
it was a humble beginning to the sport of mountain biking

in addition to bikes
les was also into photography
les worked a short stint as a messenger doing runs for a camera store
during that time he took photos of various messengers
I wonder if he would find any amusement in the fact that I am still riding a mountain bike and that I enjoy taking photos of messengers?

I could not catch air then
I can not catch air now
not much changes

the ditty bops cd

recently got the ditty bops cd
give it a listen
give their songs at myspace a listen

the ditty bops at myspace


always good to be home

it is always good to be home
it will be good to be sleeping in my own bed
although I slept just fine in the various beds we slept in while in Colorado
and it was various beds

in the world of parenting odd things can happen in the night
a soundless game of musical beds
the children can wake commanding your presence
the children can wake commanding access to your room
there can be all sorts of bed combinations through the night

having the kids sleep through the night is always a pleasure

we will see how the time shift and all the late summer nights effect their sleep cycle in the days to come
maybe the record has skipped and will pick up at a premium position
early to bed and sleeping late
that is the equation that I dream of
but right now
I have kids that are training for a life of late night partying farmers

I love those little monkeys
I just wish they would stay in their own bed all night

excited to see the photos from the trip
am considering printing out the shots that dean took
he was so excited about using the camera
he likes to get abstract
I like to have him take pictures of the family
he likes to take pictures of whatever he wants to take pictures of
he will intentionally cut off my head in the shot
he will intentionally zoom in on my butt

he also followed my instructions and took a few shots of me on various hikes
my five year old camera man

Shenadoah Mountain Touring

shenandoah mountain 100
my heart rate goes up just typing those characters

the wilderness 101 just passed
one year I should put this event on the calendar

the results are interesting
this company brings a great deal to the east coast scene

shenandoah mountain touring
oh, and chris scott is a good dude too

I need to take the plunge and just sign up for the S M 1 0 0
will have to play the late fee
there is still a little time to start logging some miles

winter park worked out quite well...

the vacation was a family vacation
there was talk of doing a race in Winter Park on Saturday
but only if we arrived by Friday
work did not allow that Friday to be away
which meant that there was no chance of hitting that race

which was fine
there was enough gear being dragged about the airport as it was

being from sea level and all that
well... and
colorado being colorado
well... and
it was alright not getting humbled in front of a bunch of strangers

this all came to surface last night on our last night in Boulder as I jumped into the pool with my two boys I saw a guy with a spanking new black cast on his arm
the fit build along with the location and the Ritchey hat spelled bike accident
I bluntly asked... "did that happen on the bike?"

the exchange was pleasant and open
no great detail
he had one eye on his daughter while I alternated my one eye between my two boys
grant with a life jacket
dean swimming like marine boy sans aqua gum

in our exchange it came up that he had missed the Leadville 100 that day
that brought a smile to my face
sorry for him
yet quasi happy for me
as I missed the Leadville 100 that day as well
had I know that that race corresponded with my family vacation
I could still be riding my bike trying to finish that course right now

apparently missing the Leadville 100 is a real bummer to this guy
his wife understood and offered the Cyclocross Nationals as a way to make up for the missed race and the injury
sounds like his wife understands his addiction

leadville 100
one of the great things about the Shenandoah Mountain 100 is how late it happens in the year
it allows that race to be at many mountain bike rider's to be at their peak fitness
as well as being at the tail end of their year
as a 100 miles off road may take the snap out of a rider's legs for a few weeks

riding the chair and riding down hill on a bunch of times may not have been making use of the high elevation for training for a distance event
but who said anything about training
who said anything about racing