28 November 2016

Cyber Monday

Yes, this is THE day I do my Christmas shopping. Already knocked down about half of the things needed for one person...
Considering I've been up since about 3:30am with a headache that would kill a mortal, I should really be farther along.

Had some good rides over the last week.
Good night ride Tuesday. No waiting around. We got down to bidness, and knocked it down. 20 minutes faster than waiting at every turn.
Went out with JB on Turkey Day, and did a couple of hours on the CX bike. Thankfully, we rode easy, as I felt like crap.
The Boss took Junior Management to her family Thanksgiving lunch, aka "I'm here for my free meal...", so I had the house to myself. Nice ride, quiet lunch, and a really solid nap.
I rolled out to the LexCo office for dinner @ 4:30pm, and shockingly, my mother did not gluten me this time around. 1 out of 4 ain't bad.
Friday, TVH and I went out for a spin through LR. It was a beautiful day. Big sun. Light wind. Nearly 70 degrees. Something to be said for that at the end of November. We ran into TG heading the opposite way. Sorry I didn't send you a note about riding. My bad.
Got back to Service Course and loaded Junior Management into The Beast, then headed out to The Swamp for a nice hike in the woods. It was packed...
And I'm gonna bitch a little now...
People...when you go to a National Park, especially one that's pretty much based on the premise of a quiet walk in the woods, SHUT. THE. FUCK. UP.
Seriously, too much LOUD yapping. My 5 year old knows to use hushed tones. You should too when visiting quiet places.

Weston Lake was lovely...
Anywho...
No ridey Saturday. I was going to go spin for an hour, but as I walked down to SC to get a bike, it was clear that the leaves needed to be cleared. Two hours later, the yard was clear, and I was tired. The Boss queried why I worked so hard, and didn't take my time.
Easier to go hard, and get it done than to F around, and have it take twice the time.
This is especially true of things that suck...like clearing leaves. If one must eat a shit sandwich, power it down. No reason to savor it.
It was a thin Heathen ride Sunday. TVH and I did 2.5 hours, and headed home. It was sunny, but a tick colder than it's been. I had to dig out knee warmers.
Ended the long weekend with some decent miles, and some QT with the fam. Pretty successful in my book.

Good CX racing in Europe over the weekend too...

Zeven


MvdP broke a spoke in the first turn, lost spots, and still came back to win solo. He says he thinks he's coming into form. No shit?

Hamme


The guys at Jetnikoff, down under, seem to know how to put a package together. Just clean builds...

 Quit fooling around Mike! Seriously...
I heard a guy say that Mapei's kits were the worst ever. I may have assaulted him.
And how about Axel looking like Eddy in this shot? 

We'll end with this...
I'm no cat person, but I'm fairly sure this guy would be welcome in my house. Also pretty sure that when the animals finally rise up and subjugate us for being jerks, he will be in some sort of leadership role. 

Happy Monday kids...gotta go clean some bikes...























































21 November 2016

Back at it...

Ahhh...good to be back on the bike...
The halfway forced time off was good, but riding is mo betta.
Went out last Wednesday and gave the CX bike (and the repaired rear wheel) a spin. Had to cut it a bit short, as the Thanksgiving lunch for #2 was at noon. Still got 1:45, and nothing broke. Success.
Also ran into a BIG buck out on the dirt. How big? Big enough that when I first spotted him off in the distance, I wondered ALOUD, "Why is there a cow out here?"
Easily 250 pounds on the hoof, and I counted 8 points. He did not run away. He walked about 10 feet off the doubletrack, and watched me ride by. Guessing he returned to his acorns after I went past.
Rolled over to the night ride Thursday, and had big fun. We've developed a somewhat "normal" loop for Thursday night. I could tell you what it is, or you could come join in the fun...
The new Clement Cut-Through (CCT) is getting ridden in pretty well. I'ma go out there one of these cold mornings and clear it a bit, and maybe do a little marking.
Got home with a tick over two hours. Seems my "night eyes" are coming around after about 3 weeks of riding in the dark. If you do think that's an actual thing, you don't ride at night.
The last futbol match of the season was Saturday morning, so a got out early, and did two hours. It was cold, but the sun was out, so I went with embro only on the guns. Felt really good while I was in the sun. Once I turned, and went back into The Powerstation, I sort of wanted those Capo Roubaix kneewarmers.
It was EASILY 10+ degrees colder back in the woods. Solution? Speed up. Get the blood moving...
As I came back in, I saw the big boy again. This time, he did not move. I rode past him at a distance of MAYBE 10 feet. He's 250 EASY, and actually has 10 points!! Trophy buck. Thankfully, he back where he's safe.
Got home and coached the team to a loss. Half the kids played really hard. The other half should go find something else to do. They're wasting their time, their parent's time, their teammates time, and my time.
#2 hurt his ankle, but stayed in the game b/c "my teammates are lazy".
He's developing a relationship with pain. That's a good thing.
Sunday brought out the core Heathens. We've missed a couple of guys for the last few weeks. They SAY they're coming out, but....
We did a nice loop out through Gaston, over to Sandy Run, and back in.
It was terrible out there...
100km feel easy under wheels. Got back to Service Course, and did exactly DICK for the rest of the day. It was nice.
Speaking of wheels, I rode the RS81s for the first time in a long time. I'd forgotten how light they feel. They just spin up on the flats and going uphill. I big-ringed a couple of things that would normally be small ring. Of course, the 11-28 cassette likely had something to do with that as well.
The wheels do everything well. Light. Stiff. Roll reasonably well at speed. I say "reasonably" because they're only 24mm deep, and the hoops are light. Over about 27mph, they don't hold their speed like a heavier rim, or deep wheel would.
I need to sit down and right an actual review...

Big mile week ahead. Thanks Turkey Day!!

 "Now remember what I told you..."
-"Yeah dad, I got it. When in trouble, more throttle..."

Can we talk about this Wilier? Sexy MFer....

Okay...things to do...
Have a productive Monday.


15 November 2016

Still off...

Remember the scene in "The Princess Bride" when Miracle Max said, "...He's MOSTLY dead..."?
Yeah...I've ridden one time in the last 6 days because I'm MOSTLY lazy.

Last Thursday, we rolled over to the night ride. Nice group...big fun...then it happened...
Once we got onto The Powerstation, there was the telltale "PAAANG" of a spoke letting go. It just worked out that it was on my bike. Rear wheel. Rear carbon wheel. Driveside. Perfect.
TG stopped with me, and I wrapped the spoke around it's nearest, still intact neighbor, undid the brake, and rode on.
In my haste, I neglected to realize that the head section of the spoke was stuck in the cassette, ergo, I was Capt. Fixed Gear until we met the waiting group at the end of the dirt.
Once again, I effected a quick fix, and we rolled it home.
The Williams Cycling carbon wheel has been an absolute trooper. Bulletproof. Hell, I bought the damn things in the Spring of 09!! If you needed great, stiff, light, fast wheels, look at Williams.
Enough shilling...
I ran up to the shop Friday morning, bought two spokes, and replaced the broken one. Brought it up to tension, checked the rest of it's friends, and voila, the wheel was true, round, and back in service.
No ridey Saturday. Futbol was at 0900, and I just had no urge to get on the bike after the match. Lazy.
Nothing at all productive went on the rest of the day. Lazy.
The plan was to meet The Heathens Sunday morning at the stop. The weatherman said there was a chance of rain. What they didn't say was that it would start at 5:00am, and last all flipping day. 43 degrees and rain.
Maybe being off the bike last Winter made me a bit softer, because the very thought of going out in that shit was not attractive. We called it.
I went to Whole Foods, then didn't leave the house again until Monday morning. Lazy.
Jump to today...
Not a lot happened today either. The plan was to hit the night ride tonight, but The Boss did me, and didn't get home until 6, and I HATE having to kill it to make the ride. Plus, all of the fires up in the mountains are sharing their smoke with us. It was a bit hazy today, and the air quality was less than optimal.
Instead, I made nachos for Junior Management, and waffles for myself. Lazy.
The lazy stops tomorrow morning. I've ridden 4 times in November. The remainder of the month will be spent with a Flite firmly pressed against my butt.
Smoke and air quality be damned...

There are berms, then there are BERMS...
                                                
 Mig...
 I've been in front of this face on a climb before. Yes, he had been long retired at that point, but it was no less daunting...nor cool.
My friend Dave built up this beast. Monster cross? Mountain cross? Monster dirt road rig? Check. Full XT. Long travel fork with lockout. Any tire fitment your little heart desires. GD cool if you ask me. Sort of like Dave...

Speaking of bikes that will go anywhere...
I'd roll this thing all day, every day...
Retro-Mod BMW R90
Smooth and clean.
Kermit the Porsche.
Sometimes, I'm glad I don't have a lot of money. The Toy Barn would need to be about 25,000 sq.ft.

It's 8pm. I'm going to go get ready for bed. I'm gonna ride this lazy wave all the way into the beach.



10 November 2016

This and that...

Lemme 'splain...

I needed a few days off. Fortunately, or unfortunately, life sometimes presents situations where one doesn't have much of a choice.
I backed off a bit after a big October, then our hot water heater decided it was done. It started leaking, so I started the process of getting it replaced. Process...
I could go into the entire thing, but you guys aren't hear to listen to that. Let's just it will be the VERY last time I ever use Lowe's Contractor Services. This is the third time we've used them. NEVER a simple transaction.
You'd think I would have learned. What's the definition of insanity again?
Their process is flawed, from top to bottom. No communication. Poor training. Poor management. They screwed it up from step one, continued screwing up (then changing their story), then they had the balls to lie about it.
It's cool though. I sent The Boss over there yesterday, as I was stuck at home with an ill member of Junior Management. They lied to her face, but when she put on her B hat, and presented all of the paperwork, recorded phone calls, and proof that they were lying, they decided it was better to give than to deal with our attorney.
Yes...it was quickly coming to that point.
We've been without hot water for 4 days. I didn't take this many cold showers when I was an overly horny teenager.
Running this shit down for the last three days, coupled with sick Junior Management shot any riding square in the keester.
The plumber/installer is supposed to be here @ 11 this morning. If they aren't, my next post may be from RCDC.
The plan is to do the night ride tonight. My battery is charging. We'll see...

I skipped Saturday, and spent the day in Charleston with The Boss. It was pleasant to spend time together, and not have to yell at little people.
Slept in on Sunday, and went out on the CX bike for a couple of hours. Did some exploring, and just sort of rolled around. The Powerstation is SOFT in places. Still way more fun than trudging around almost anywhere else.
The Salsa rode way better after a full drivetrain clean, and a rear hub rebuild. Coupled with a new set of Clement LAS rubber, it was almost sublime.

Pretty things :
 Single sided, single speed.
 Rob English does things right. This commuter rig is nuts.
 RWB 911 Turbo. Yes...thank you...
 The guys at Colnago seemed to have found their aurbrush kits from the late 90s/early 2000s. Not much to change on this one...
Christmas is coming. I'll gladly accept this 70 split bumper...

More to post when I actually ride a little bit...
See some of you guys tonight...

04 November 2016

Been busy...

Haven't updated for a week. Sorry. Trying to single parent, ride, and keep the house from looking like a troupe of gibbons lives here consumes a lot of time.
The Boss was out of town for work for a good part of the week, ergo, I was flying solo. No nannies or babysitters here. Unlike a lot of people, I handle my shit, and parent my kids.

Rides :
Had a few good CX rides over the last week.
Last Thursday's night ride was fun. Big group. Everyone stayed together, which was cool. 19 people winding our way through the woods and down dirt roads is good stuff.
Saturday was a shorter road ride. Soccer was going off, so I had to get home. Still got 70km.
Sunday was a great road ride. Out with the headwind. Home with the tail. It was beautiful out in the sticks.
Methinks the cotton is ready. 100km fell easy. Even ran into an old friend and shot the shit for a while. Good to see the old boy.
Tuesday brought a modified CX ride. Fucking trains everywhere. I finally gave up trying to do my complete CX loop, turned around, and headed directly to The Powerstation. It's LOOSE out there right now. We need rain badly. Even so, a quality effort was registered.
Yesterday, things worked out for the best. I caught the tail end of two trains, and the guys working on the underpass @ 26 let me sneak through. I even added a new dirt section.
Just FYI, the guys working on the 12th St. Extension extension (not a typo) graded and watered the far end of the dirt yesterday. It was pretty rideable in the morning. They've been doing it about 3 days a week.
Coming in on the PowerStation, some jackass jumped out of the woods, and waved for me to stop.
He told me they were hunting back there, and I shouldn't be riding my bike.
Um, fuck you? I explained that he was on Cayce City property, and hunting was banned in that location. And ME be careful? They were out there near the main gas line that runs into Columbia. Yeah, hit that with an errant .30-06 projectile at @3000' per second. Stupids.
And how about you fucktards NOT hunt illegally, and NOT shoot anywhere near the road? Yeah, it's still a public use road, even though it's closed on both ends. You don't have a "right" to wander around wherever you deem fit...with a GD rifle!!!
I rode on, and called the po-po when I got to the end of the dirt.  The 911 operator said, and I quote, "Why are people so dumb?"
Question for the ages.
Up Gervais with a tailwind is nice. Still hard to big ring it, but it does boost the ego a bit.
Coming home, the Salsa started making noises for which I didn't care. The drivetrain was disgusting. Chain and cogs got pulled and cleaned. Rear hub got pulled apart (it was pretty dry).
Funny how the noises went away and the bike shifts better now.
No futbol this weekend. Thank Dog. Only two weeks left. It's hard enough keeping up with 12 kids. Their parents are what's tiring.

Stuff :
 Oh my...
A little flashy for TVH.
 New rubber day for the Salsa as well. The old Clements were roasted. I usually keep one old tire, as a spare/back up. Not yesterday. Both got shitcanned.
Know what all of these things are? No? Then I don't want to hear about your disc brake road bike BS.
Shut. Up. And. Take. My. Money. F yo Sprinter van.

Gotta jet. I'ma go vote today. Screw waiting all day Tuesday.

Enjoy your weekend, and as KK used to say, may it be frank and productive... (Miss that guy...)

27 October 2016

Well...hello Fall...

It was 72 yesterday. I was looking for a hoodie. My blood has gotten thin in my advanced age.
No ridey last Saturday, as Junior Management had futbol at 0900. Immediately following the match, we went to the Fair.
Wanna know what kills your back and legs? being on them for almost 8 hours straight. Oof.
I rarely take pain meds, nor NSAIDs. I took two Aleve Saturday afternoon, then spent the better part of 45 minutes on the floor with the foam roller.
It helped, but I tightened up nicely overnight.
Riding out Sunday morning to meet Statler and Waldorf was rough. I honestly thought that it was going to be a LONG day on the bike.
Once rolling, things loosened up, and I felt better the longer we stayed out.
The 100km passed pretty easily.
Well...mostly...
About 20 minutes from Service Course, I hit something that sounded like metal. I figured the tire was cut and dead.
Nothing. No cut. No hole. Quick change and we were gone.
That being said, it was a bluebird day.

Went out and did a little modified CX+ loop. Felt okay. Just sort of spun around. 'Twas breezy. Still got a solid two hours, and the PowerStation was just about perfect.
Night ride tonight. They've been big fun lately. Tonight should be no different, especially b/c we all get to watch TG on his new CX bike.
Yeah...Colnago w/Campag Chorus 11v and Ksyrium Allroad Tubeless wheels. Needs a longer stem, a layback Thomson, and...oh Dog...is that a FSA crank?
Built up easy enough, except for the Avid BB5 disc brakes. Setting them up so they didn't feel like ass is a task.

 Speaking of CX bikes...
Oof.
Gotthard Pass. Switzerland. When are we leaving?
Know these guys? Know what they're riding?
 If not...well...you know...
And now, from the "I can't even..." file...
Boa...laces...velcro...
FFS y'all, pick one....
And the GD laces are attached to the velcro. WHAT?
Makes my head itch....

Gonna ride out and clear a tree now...




21 October 2016

One and One

As I will attempt to do for most of the Fall/Winter, I split my rides this week. One day. One night.
Yeah, riding in the morning is easier. Get up, get Junior Management off to school, hit the bike. Easy Peasy. No sitting around all day. No letting the day spiral out of control so it fucks up a night ride.

Tuesday morning, I hit the CX+ loop. 2 hours. No fuss. The PowerStation is in good nick right now. There are some soft spots, but if you're gonna ride off-road, you gotta learn to ride the stuff. Watching videos of it on YouTube doesn't cut it.
Oh yeah, I did come close to getting killed though.
Some dumbass in an old pickup decided he wanted to turn into a street as I was crossing the intersection. Fortunately, my handling skills are far above average.
I broke hard right, bunny-hopped the curb, and rode across someone's yard.
The dude stopped and gave me the old "SMIDSY". To which I responded with a torrent of expletives, and a threat to drag him from his means of conveyance, and beat him into a puddle.
It was the closest call I've had in years. Had I been looking down, just for a moment, to get my bottle, or basically ANYTHING else, I would have gotten creamed.
Stay Frosty my friends. The cagers aren't looking for us.
I sat around all day yesterday, waiting for the night ride...watching it spiral away from me at a couple of points.
I love having irresponsible family. It's brilliant. Grown-ass people with ZERO back up plans...for anything.
The Boss said she'd take care of the issues, so I was out. If she wants to deal with FIVE children, two of which aren't ours, and don't know what the word "NO" means, have at it.
I rolled out with KL. We missed CC. Sorry man...we were yapping away, and neglected to stop at the pre-determined meeting spot.
7 of us rolled out to the dirt. Gotta say, the days are getting SHORT. It was dark by the time we got to the end of The PowerStation. Coming back, I chose to tempt fate, and suggested the Clement Cut-Through.
You know, the one that ate my D/A R/D last week.
It's getting a bit ridden in at this point. A little work this Winter and it'll be a nice little trail to ride.
We rolled home with no issues.
A fun 2:15 on the bike was had by all.
Rumor has it that TayTay will have his Colnago CX bike done tomorrow. Watching him go full Bambi on it next week will be fun.

Two wheels GOOOOD....
 I'll take the Duc as it sits...
 I'm no MTB guy, but I do appreciate the "Simple is Better" MoS. The C'dale above is some high-tech, pro-level shit, but it's SIMPLE. No special gee-gaw shit, just for the sake of it.
Style. And look at the luft of the cap. So Pro....

Big CX races this weekend in Europe....
Stayed tuned next week.
Soccer in the morning, then I promised to take JM to the Fair. Yes...I am a dummy...