30 December 2006

Why the smells?

So, as most of you know, my brother and I ride at night on the local Army base. We go out through the woods and inevitably, have some sort of (mis)adventure. The thing that is always the most odd is the preponderance of wacky smells out in the middle of the woods...and always at night. I've been out there literally hundreds of times during the day and never smelled anything other than the outdoors.
One night, it was baby diapers...and not the dirty, poopy ones. It was the clean powder smell of a new diaper. Another night we smelled wet dog for a good mile of the trail. I figured it was just Bigfoot and rode faster.
We hit it Thursday night and on the way back in from the turnaround, there was a 1/2 mile section of trail that smelled like grape flavored bubble gum. You know what I'm talking about...that sticky, sugary, sweet grape Bubble gum smell from our youth. We didn't smell it on the way out, just on the way back. Weird....! The H.O. offered the guess that maybe someone was cooking Meth out there. I explained that Sudafed and drain cleaner do not create a smell equivalent to that of grape Bubble Yum.
We had a good ride though. Heavy legs were in abundance. Eating every homemade cookie produced in Chesterfield County is not conducive to riding well....

Today's ride was good too. It was generally pretty steady with a few very quick bursts that inflicted some pain and damage. 10 people showed up, which is saying something from December 30th. It was 58 degrees when I left and 70 when I got home. Freaking amazing weather. Dink got shown speed again today, but didn't seem any wiser for it. I just cannot understand that dude...maybe it's a test. A full report will follow...

I rebuilt my Ultegra hubs tonight. Nothing says lovin' like new ball-bearings and a helping of Phil Wood grease. Smooth like a stripper's butt. Well, a good stripper in a nice establishment...working her way through "Law School"!

28 December 2006

Long time

It's been a while since I've posted...Christmas with the H.O.'s lunatic family. Different story for a different time...

Last Saturday, we had a good, steady ride through Lower Richland, including Chaingang. I'd never been down that way before and I must say, it was a nice change. I'm all about Dean's idea of taking a new road on every ride. It mixes it up nicely and makes for a nice change of pace. It was warm (65ish), but wet. No rain, just humid and wet roads. Our resident Dink was pulling his normal routine. I think someone spoke to him about it, as it seemed to stop...

Until Sunday...

I think he wants to go hard all the time. There's a zone that you aren't supposed to ride in for long periods. It's right @ 85%. Dink rides there the whole time he's on the bike. He would follow wheels, speed up and slow down and keep looking back when he would ride 2 or 3 lengths of the the front, like he was hammering us. Trust me Dink, I can close the gap on you.
At the end of the ride, I figured enough was enough. I attacked on 321 and opened a pretty substantial gap. I sat up on a climb and Dink caught me and rode past. I waited on The Hammer and pulled my guts out to close the gap. Dink was riding at about 13/10ths. His body looked like he was about to fly off the bike. When we turned to go home, he told me I was an 'Animal' and took everything he had to catch me. I reminded him it was December and I wasn't fit AND that I sat up to wait on the group. This will be different come April, that I can assure you. There will be no sitting up and waiting...! Dink will be riding home alone...A LOT!

Brohem and I will be in the woods tonight...maybe this ride will be better than my last foray into the wilderness.

21 December 2006

2 out 3 is sometimes bad...

Brohem and I rode in the dark last night. It was a nice night...55 degrees, no wind, dry...
I'm sure that if you've ridden with any anger at all, that you've had a day when everything goes according to plan. Some days, though, you have either bad legs or bad heart. Last night, I had good legs, good heart, but the brain must have flown out for a little time alone before Christmas. My mind was gone. I couldn't see the trail, couldn't remember the turns, could barely handle the bike and was just plain stupid. It made no difference that I was rocking 40 watts of lights. I cut a fresh path about a dozen times last night. Some of the lines might have been good, but some were definitely the wrong way around.
Tree, meet dumbass...dumbass, meet tree! Pitiful!
Maybe I was just tired. I did sleep like a baby last night. Or maybe it's the search for carbon wheels on Ebay that's locking up too much computing speed in the old noggin. I sold the Reynolds wheels and now have a pile of cash burning a hole in my Paypal account.

Today is Winter Solstice. The days only get longer for the next six months.

Rain is called for until Saturday afternoon. Rain or not, I'll be on the bike Saturday. If no rain, the road will fear me. If rain, I will go exert my dominance over the trail that soundly whipped my ass last night. I'll let you know what transpires...

3 days until Christmas...

18 December 2006

It must be global warming

So Saturday, the high here was 72 and Sunday was 70. Saturday we had a pretty big group for this time of year and had a really good 100km ride. It was steady at 30-35 kmh and had a few quick bursts. The only true efforts were chasing down our favorite local ding-dong. Everytime the group would slow down, the moron would go to the front and ride off, like he was dropping us. At one point, he took a left turn and the group just kept going straight! After three hours of it, I chased him down on a long flat stretch and simply coasted by...

On the run-in to the sprint, he did it again, but this time he kept looking back. It was if he was taunting the group. I told BLK to go and the two of us ripped across the 200 meter gap at 55 kmh. We went by DD (ding-dong) like he was on jackstands. I let BLK have the sprint (won't happen in the spring and summer), as he did all of the work.

Sunday was another good ride. 3 hours and 55 miles of medium tempo to turn the legs over. There really weren't any quick bursts. I think Saturday took the wind out of more than a few sails. It was a good ride and a good group...

Well, it's a boy...again! Bambino numero due should be arriving at the end of April. The sonogram was pretty easy to read...see the pic...! I could tell it was a boy and I'm an idiot. Hopefully, this one won't be 9 pounds and 22 inches that leads to another 18 hours of brutal labor for the H.O.

13 December 2006

Dear trainer,

I hate you in so many ways. So many way, in fact, that I cannot express tham all. My hate runs so deep for you that, if not for my positive attitude and need for time on the bike, I would go buy a plasma cutter and reduce you to little more than $.37/pound scrap.

My brother is out of town for the rest of the week, so I was forced into the ManHole to ride the trainer tonight. I rode the trainer last Sunday as well, making two days in a week, which is unheard of around here. Normally, I would put on the lights and go ride by myself, either a road loop on the Fort or my downtown "Hour of Power" (trademark pending) of the crosser. It's Christmas time and folks are rushing about with little regard for each other, much less a guy on a bike, so I chose to ride the trainer. I truly do not know how you people above the Manson-Nixon line do it all winter. I watch race DVDs and movies while I'm riding and can still only muster an hour before the voices start wanting me to go strangle someone. I have a friend in Canada who goes to his basement and rides the rollers for 3 hours!! Are you kidding me? After three hours, I'd be so homicidal that I'd need a strait-jacket and a fistful of Paxil.

We find out Friday whether Il Bambino will have a little fratello or sorella. The H.O. says it's another boy while I'm just not sure. I've been having dreams that we have a girl. Of course, I also have dreams about Kate Beckinsale...

BTW- my Reynolds Stratus wheels are on EBay...Buy it now for $825

10 December 2006

It was cold...

So brohem and I decide to ride mountain bikes on Saturday morning. All fine and well other than the fact it was 27 degrees when I left the house at 8:15 am. We didn't feel like driving anywhere so we did the Ft. Jackson loop plus a little bit.
I know I made fun of him for having to warm his feet, but I was in need of the Vagisil yesterday. Note to everyone, Fox Racing full finger gloves do not equal warm winter mitts. I thought I was one of those guys on Everest. You know the ones...the guys whose appendages go numb and then turn black, only to drop off some days later. I couldn't feel my pinky fingers and thumbs for most of the ride.
We didn't go all that hard and did some barrier construction/addition to a fallen tree. You can now ride up and over. It was a good ride that led to a good nap. Il bambino slept, so I slept. It's all very cyclical.
It was 29 when I woke up this morning. I held out zero hope that anyone would show for the group road ride. The heaters are running in the ManHole. It'll be a balmy 60 down there by then time I go down to get on the rollers for an hour or so. I haven't decided what movie to watch though...! The beauty of a 32" TV and a DVD player in the shed is boundless. I just need to run cable down there...

I'm beginning to amass parts for the new frame build. FSA SL-K cranks were snapped up on EBay for $167...with BB. A bargain! All I need is a seat clamp and headset...and the patience to wait two more months for my new carbon frame.

06 December 2006

Holy shit, it's a Humvee

So my brother and I decide to go out a little early last night, so we can ride longer/farther. It was a plan. Not a good one, not a bad one, just a plan. So we meet at 5 on the crossers and head out. There are pine cones and sticks everywhere on the far end of the trail. I catch a stick AND a cone and the bike comes to a dead stop. I pull 15 to 20 pounds of crap out of the rear derailleur and see that the thing has been flipped 270 degrees by the large stick that ended my forward momentum. For a minute, I shit, thinking that the H.O. would not be happy about driving halfway to the middle of nowhere to get me and my disabled rig. Fortunately, I grab the R/D and flip it back around. It works shifts and still does the job for which a small Japanese man designed it. There is a stop on the unit itself that is supposed to hinder the thing from flipping around. Well, it didn't...! It did, however, take a nice chunk out of the body of the R/D while it was doing it's backflip. No harm, no foul...

We get onto the base, illegally I might add, and begin the fire road slog around the lake. On the climb out, I hear a diesel engine off to our 9 o'clock. When we get to the crossroads, I look back and see a set of headlights coming up the road. Did I mention we were on an Army base, at night, in a restricted area, illegally? I yell exactly what the title states and tell my brother to kill his lights. We kill all lights and haul ass, in the dark, up the road. We weren't seen (obviously) or else I may be typing this from Gitmo. I don't think we'll be doing that loop again anytime soon...in the dark at least.

Total ride was 2:40 and a bit over 50km, which is damn good for a night ride...in the woods!

It would have been about 10 minutes shorter, but Poo-Poo had to stop to warm up his toes...
Should have just rubbed some Vagisil on 'em...

03 December 2006

Group and solo

Saturday we had a few folks show up. The sun was out, but it wasn't exactly warm...maybe 50-ish. I know some of you are saying 50? Well, it's been up in the high 60s and 70s here for a long while. 50 feels cold...! We ended up doing about 3 hours at a moderate/slow pace. My legs were stiff and heavy from eating poorly and hauling Il Bambino around for the previous two days.
The weather changed last night...for the worse. I woke up to 38 and threatening skies. I knew no one would bother to show, so I hit the trail, solo, on the cross bike. It started raining about 30 minutes after I got home. It turned into a cold, breezy, rainy, all around crappy day. The H.O. was/is on her broom today too....

Christmas is 21 days away. I'm about 65% done with shopping. I just can't go on the weekend. Too many stupid people out there who act as if they've never been out of the trailer park. I get aggro and want to start snapping necks...! Not exactly the Christmas spirit, so I shop in the middle of the week, when all of the unwashed masses are toiling away at work.

Night ride Tuesday...must charge lights...

01 December 2006

I have the solution to obesity

Yes folks, you'll be reading it here first, so remember where you saw it...

The solution for obesity in America is to close down all Golden Corral and Cracker Barrel restaurants. As you know, the entire company went to the beach a couple of days ago. In the interest of eating in a location that would be acceptible for Il Bambino, we chose Golden Corral for dinner last night. If you can find something to eat at GC, you aren't really trying. If you can't find too much of that thing, you are not even paying attention. I am at my winter weight of 185-ish right now, and I was by far the thinnest person in GC. I had ONE plate of food from the buffet and some banana pudding. There were a few people that looked like Mr. Creosote...! I mean really, if you must have a chair for each ass-cheek, push the plate away.
Cracker Barrel is no better. Nothing like three pancakes, two eggs and three slices of bacon to dull your senses first thing in the morning. We ate at 9 am...I haven't eaten since and feel like I need a half dozen apples and a whole head of iceberg to cleanse my system

Needless to say, I'll be riding on the front both days this weekend.

29 November 2006

3 days off the bike

And boy, do I need it! After stacking 6 days in a row, with all rides being 2+ hours, I'm a bit stiff and sore. Nothing like a shock to the system to get the metabolism going again. 16 hours of training spread over 6 days will make you sleep good at night. I took today off to go Xmas shopping and the H.O. , Il Bambino and I leave for the beach tomorrow. She has some BS meeting down there and seeing how I'm not gainfully employed, I will be playing the part of loving husband and father. Plus, there's a huge outlet mall there with Puma and Adidas and the season is over, so the bike shops will be blowing shit out.

My brother and I did the cross loop last night. It was 69 degrees when we left and 67 when I got home, at 8 pm! I'm sure we'll pay for the warm weather later in winter...! Of course, I could be in Colorado right now. Breck got 12 inches of powder last night...! That place is freaking idyllic. I would have little second thought about selling all our shit and moving out there! The H.O. says the same, but she'd start to bitch on the 3rd day of 20 degrees and snow...thin blood!

Anywho...out 'til Saturday...

26 November 2006

70 and sunny

The schools may suck, the economy may be less than stellar, and there may be a few too many rednecks around here, but it's 70 and sunny with no wind today. How's the weather where you live?

Today was the 4th day in a row on the bike for me. Nothing like a 60 mile jaunt to close out the stretch. The group was big and varied this morning, thus creating a good ride. Stacking days like this really seems to help me. The legs don't feel altogether bad. I'm definitely tired though. I haven't put more than 10 hours in a week, on the bike, since about September...! Nothing like jumping from 5-7 hours right back up to 12!

Christmas is in 29 days! I haven't bought a thing yet. The beauty of the internet is the fact that by 9pm tomorrow, I'll be almost done. I really hate the mall...


24 November 2006

Now THIS is more like it

The weather finally broke. Yesterday was sunny, albeit a bit windy still. One could tell the sun was back on the clock though. The warmth felt good on my face.

My brother and I did a pre-turkey ride on the cross bikes. I was a bit out of sorts. My bum shoulder was acting up, so I didn't feel all that great. Sometimes it hurts so bad that I get nauseous! Riding didn't help. It only exacerbated the problem and created a huge headache. I decided to medicate and took a Vicodin and a cyclobenzaprine before going to Mom's for dinner.

I was HHHIIIIGGGHHHH! I got home last night @ 7pm and was in bed, asleep by 9pm. 11 solid hours of sleep were what the Doc ordered. I was foggy when I woke up, but still did 2 hours on the road bike.

My old rear Ksyrium SL is about to give up the ghost. It sounded like two old folks humping in the back of a car today. Nothing but creaks, moans and squeaks. Not confidence inspiring...

It has served me well for three years and untold races and was retired about 30 minutes ago. I may rebuild it, but that will have to wait until after the new bike gets completed.

The H.O. is gone with Il Bambino, so it's quiet around here. The roofers finished @ 5pm. They'll be back in the A.M. to finish the ridgevent and clean up. One of them fell through the roof this afternoon. Why you put the fattest guy on the bad part of the roof is beyond me. Fortunately, he didn't come through the ceiling.

You may hate on me now...! I'm still a fat masters racer, but we know the bike isn't holding me back!

22 November 2006

Please file into the Ark in an orderly fashion

It's been raining for two days. I don't mean the little pissy rain that just gets stuff wet, I mean hard, cold, wind from the north rain. Nothing says lovin' like 42 degrees and driving rain. So much for riding outside. I'd almost rather it be ass-biting cold, but sunny and clear. It actually sleeted here yesterday. This in South Carolina for crying out loud, not Ohio!
We are going to attempt a ride tomorrow morning, before engorging ourselves on turkey. I hope the rain stops. I really don't want to ride the trainer tomorrow. :( Temps are supposed to be back into the upper 60s by Saturday. No wonder my sinuses hurt...

February 23rd is the delivery date for the new custom carbon rig. I feel a bit guilty building it up with Ultegra, but it will be the race bike. I just cringe everytime I think about crashing the Ridley and destroying it.

The roof guys started Monday...! I guess we'll see them Friday to finish up. Thankfully, they had the foresight to finish the front and not just tear the entire roof off of the house.

Happy Turkey Day!

20 November 2006

Freakin' Mondays...


Computer went tits up
-reloaded EVERYTHING
-spent QT with tech support

Lunch with the Head Office
-dropped phone in toilet at restaurant

Roof guys show up...at noon
-all look as if they've spent some QT in the 'pen
-doors locked, blinds drawn

I'm going to bed....

18 November 2006

It's 1:04pm...

...and I've already had a full day. The day began with a nice 2-1/2 road ride through Lower Richland county. One would think that the group might have been large today, given that it's BEAUTIFUL outside. BZZZZZT! Wrong answer! 3 us of rolled out this morning. Paul was out on his new bike. He's been off the bike for about 12 weeks after getting popped by a car and breaking his femur in FOUR places. He didn't seem any worse for wear, but I could tell that he lost a lot of power in his bad leg.
When I returned to my humble abode, Lowe's had delivered the materials for our new roof. Instead of, I don't know, putting them on the driveway, they decided the best place would be on my grass. If you know me at all, you probably know that my yard is very important to me. Needless to say, the guy that answered the phone in the Commercial sales Department at Lowe's has a little less ass right now...! I gave them the ultimatum of coming back within the hour to move the two full pallets off my grass or I would come by and pickup my refund check. They took 42 minutes to get here.
I also spent 90 minutes removing a metric ass-load of leaves from my lawn. And yes, a metric ass-load is an actual measure of volume. It's less than the standard English ass-load, but still quite a large amount.

I don't watch football all that much, as Carolina sucks, but today is the day... Ohio State/Michigan. Number 1 and number 2. I will be in front of the HDTV at 3:30 for this one.
I'm a pretty die hard OSU fan, but Michigan will be ready today.
A good man and a great coach died yesterday. Bo Schembechler was coach at Michigan for 20 years. I have fond memories of Bo. When my Dad was a high school football coach, he had a kid being recruited by Michigan. I got to make the trip with them. I was 7 years old and it was cooler than any theme park, ever! Bo gave us the tour of the stadium and the facilities personally and was very nice to me in particular. Some people would have brushed off a precocious 7 year old, but not Bo. 30 years later, I still have the autograph he gave me that day.
Hopefully he and my dad will run into each other upstairs and have a good sitdown and talk about football...

16 November 2006

Chicken Little to the Weather Center...

Okay, now I realize that it's the weather guys' job to make us aware of any dangerous or inclement weather coming our way, but damn, at least TRY to be accurate. They made it seem like the Rapture was on the way last night and it did little more than rain. Hell, our roof didn't even leak...(another story for another day!)
A cold front has moved through today though. At lunch, it was 65 degrees. Let's just say it's waaay colder than that now. I won't say what the temp is, as it's likely to illicit a hearty round of "F you" from my friends who live up North and read this fine piece of literary achievement, but it ain't 65 anymore...

Il Bambino broke my upper lip open today with a WWE-worthy headbutt to the face. Little shit...! He thought it was quite comical...I, however, failed to see the comedic value. He has also taken to kicking me in the doo-dads when sitting in a shopping cart. It's hard to determine what I dislike more, a shot to the mouth, or a shot to the berries...

I haven't ridden all week and will not get on the bike tonight. My brother is going out to get drunk with his wife at Vista Lights. I usually ride through the Vista when I do my solo night rides, but the thought of dodging 5 or 6...hundred DUI cases just doesn't bring a twinkle to my eye. I flatly refuse to get on the trainer (at least at this point) either...! Call me in the cold, wet doldrums of February and I'll likely be in the ManHole pounding out intervals while watching old Euro race videos...


15 November 2006

No ride tonight

This is the SE radar image from 10:00 am this morning. It's now 10:10 am. My brother and I planned on riding this evening, but there are far too many pretty colors on the radar map, and far too many electricity conducting pine trees on the trail, to really risk going out tonight.
It looks like I'll be on the bike sometime tomorrow afternoon...if the Head Office actually holds to what she told me yesterday.
We SHOULD have ridden last night, as it was 70 degrees and beautiful, but brotherman burned all of his matches by going to the Carolina Panthers game on Monday night.
Il Bambino seems to be coming down with something...oh joy! There's nothing quite like baby snot. Slick, yet sticky...! It would probably be good to inject into hubs in lieu of grease.

13 November 2006


It was windy, windy, windy...

Holy crap! Dean, Mike and I rode Sunday morning. Between the wind beating us into submission and me flatting/cutting my rear tire, the ride took waaaay longer than it should have. It was good to ride with those guys again. It had been a long while.
Speaking of the tires, Deda RS Open Corsas are great tires, but when they are worn out, they are gone. I looked at the rear tire Saturday night and again Sunday morning and figured it would last one more 50 mile ride...WRONG! I cut it like we were in a gang fight in the barrio.
Two tubes, two CO2 carts and a dollar bill boot later, we were on our way. Flat changes usually take me less than 5 minutes. This one...not so much. Let's just say that I'm not proud of my performance.

I did make it home in time to get a nap. Il bambino sacked out, so I did too.

Of course, today, there is NO wind and it's 70 flippin' degrees...

My brother saw something interesting at Sesqui on Sunday and posed the question of the week:

Even though lycra can stretch to 400% of it's original size, should it?

11 November 2006

On the road again

We had 7 folks on the group ride this morning, which is something of an accomplishment around here these days. It was a really good ride too. About 2-1/2 hours at around 30 kmh.
Riding the road bike just feels weird, albeit much easier than lugging around the cross bike or the squishy. I do kind of miss riding on the road these days...
The Big Stampede is tomorrow in Charlotte, so if you are close, there is good bike stuff to be had for not a lot of cash. HealthNet will be there, as usual, and Jeff is bringing lots of toys and goodies on his sleigh. Reynolds wheels, Cannondale frames and bikes, HN clothing, Ritchey stuff...and if you go, find Spence Lueders and thank him. He works tirelessly to do things like this and is an all-around hell of a guy.
I went to the HQ today and got what I needed and a little extra. Somehow, a set of Reynolds Stratus carbon wheels followed me home. The Head Office told me it was okay to keep them, so they don't have to go to the SPCFW (Society for the Protection of Carbon Fiber Wheels). They're sitting here toying with my emotions though. I know I shouldn't ride them in the winter, on a slow training ride, but they will probably get the better of me...! I haven't bought any cork pads yet, so they'll probably stay in the house until that happens.

Well, another road ride beckons tomorrow morning...

10 November 2006

A damn good show

The Head Office and I went to see Brad Paisley last night at the Colonial Center. It was a damn good show and well worth the cash.
Jake Owen was first on the triple bill. He was pretty entertaining and enjoyable. I'd really never heard him before, but deserves to be checked out.
Carrie Underwood was on second and put on an excellent performance. Her voice has really gotten stronger since American Idol. The highlight of her set was a cover of Guns -n- Roses 'Sweet Child O' Mine'. It started out acoustic and then they broke into the full metal version. They did the full version and it was done very faithfully and very well. It falls under my ideal of doing covers correctly or not at all.

Brad Paisley came about 9 pm and played his narrow ass off for two hours. To get straight to the point, he can flat PLAY. Fast, slow, technical, acoustic, whatever...! You can tell that he has spent some serious time with his Telecaster throughout his life. Speaking of Telecasters, he played 8 different custom versions during the show. The whole band was very solid and seemed like they were having a good time. The strange part is the fact that they are all from South Carolina...

All in all, it was a great show. If they come anywhere close to you, I highly recommend going, even if you aren't a huge country music fan.

09 November 2006

The short arm of the law

So we do the normal 'cross ride last night, but there were some occurences that set it apart.
My brother almost got popped by a fat lady in a 'Burban. I'm sure she had to get the KFC home before it got cold, lest her fat, over-entitled children wouldn't have eaten it.
I dug in the front wheel and almost got thrown, but I saved it and got a foot down. In making the save, I torqued my back a little bit, which slackened my sails for the remainder of the evening.
Shortly following my near-dismount, we hear some yelling and see blue-lights out on the road. The voice says to stop, so we stopped. It was a Department of Homeland Security officer (OFC. Simmons). He waddled his way through the woods, which took balls BTW, and got to us demanding ID and then asked what we were doing. I had a smart-ass comment loaded and ready, but he had a 9mm loaded and ready. Some duels you just don't fight. He said they'd been having problems with ATVs on the trail. I guess he missed the fact that there weren't the tell-tale signs of a four-stroke engine.
Once he saw we were relatively harmless, the mood lightened and he sent us on our way.
I tried to pick up the pace on the way back, but I just couldn't see (sweaty glasses) and the back was starting to stiffen. It was a good ride though. Probably 60 degrees and comfy warm.
No ride tonight, as I am taking the Head Office to see Brad Paisley. Il Bambino is spending the night away from home for the first time. My mother is entirely too excited. The poor little fella will get no peace while he's out there. It's full throttle from start to finish when he's across the river.

Weather outlook looks good for the weekend. I'll likely ride on the road both days. My brother isn't available Saturday or Sunday. Hopefully people will show up...


08 November 2006


If this doesn't hit you, you should just go jump off a bridge...

07 November 2006

Elections and ideas...

Well it's election day, and yes, I voted. Who I voted for is none of your business, but you can probably guess...
The line was only five minutes, but the folks at the voting precinct said turn-out had been good all day, which is a good thing.
Here's the idea part...
This week there have been 8, count them, 8 murders in Columbia. That's right, little Columbia, SC is turning into a city with real crime and real problems. It may be a tad radical and way right-wing, but I have an idea to help curtail the behaviour that is propogating itself in SC and all across the country. Have actual punishment for crime. Going to prison isn't punishment anymore. You get three meals, a warm bed, a facility to workout and cable TV, all on the taxpayers nickel. There is the constant threat of being stuck with a shiv or becoming the personal propety of a 350 lb. dude named Bubba or LeRoy, but to be honest, if you thought out the crime, however poorly, those thoughts should have entered the decision making process.
You want to be in a gang? Well, you can...it's called a chain gang. You want to workout while in the joint? Make 'em break big rocks into little rocks.
Here's the radical part that a lot of people may agree with, but will likely never admit it...
If there are credible witnesses, evidence that proves the crime was committed by the accused (including DNA) and the prosecution has proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty, then the punishment should be swift AND public.
Bring back the gallows. I'm not talking about one or two times or here and there...
Schedule it for the 2nd Tuesday of every month. People will say, "Hey, it's Tuesday, let's go have lunch at the gallows..."

Screw the ACLU and all of the knee jerk liberals that will say that it's cruel and unusual. Most of the crimes committed by the assholes on death row didn't afford the victims the same courtesy that we give the inmates.
Illegal aliens in prison? Put 'em on a C-130 with parachutes and drop 'em back over their home country, a la WW2. It'll be like illegal felon paratroopers.

I'm pretty live and let live, as far as it goes, but Sweet Baby Jesus, it's time to make a change.

05 November 2006

A good mountain ride

We did the BIG loop at Harbison yesterday. Ended up with 2:30 ride time. I can tell you though, some people may be able to get out of the car and just hammer...I am not one of those people. It takes the diesel a little while to get to operating temperature when it's 38 degrees outside. I was good to go about 20 minutes into the ride.
The trail was in really good shape and there were no other people out, save a few walkers and runners. We did meet one dude coming the other way. He obviously had no inkling of the term 'trail etiquitte' as he didn't slow down or yield right of way as we made our way up a climb. He just bombed by on his shiny Trek Fuel wearing a hoodie and shorts...he was CORE!
I wanted to go do the group ride this morning, but the 36 degree temps would have meant it was a solo tour as it's pretty hard to persuade the majority of the group to roll out of bed when it's below 40. Nevermind the sun is out and not a cloud in the sky. Sometimes it's just not even worth getting dressed to go sit and wait on a group that doesn't show...
I'm kind of stiff today anyway. Roadies are a delicate breed. 2-1/2 hours on some technical singletrack is completely out of element and character for a roadie. Even with 5" of travel front and rear, my arms and neck are a bit sticky this morning.

I went out and did leaves again. I'd be willing to bet that @ 20% have actually fallen at this point. The leaf blower has given up...after one year. Sears/Craftsman stuff just doesn't have the quality that it used to have. POS!

Have a good Sunday.

A reminder...The Big Stampede is next Sunday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. There's a linky >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

03 November 2006

No ritual sacrifice

The skull mentioned in the previous post was placed there by a friend, not by some teenager with a penchant for harming small animals.
This afternoon, the phone rang and a low, rather mysterious voice asked if I liked the deer skull. At first, I didn't recognize the voice and my mind began running wild with X-Files conspiracies and thoughts that the Government was actually watching me. We were riding on a military base after all...
After a couple of exchanges, the bell went off. No one has ever accused me of being all that smart...
The voice belonged to Dr. L.P., our resident cycling ER doc and all around good egg. He did, after all, write me a 'scrip for serious pain meds when I hurt my back last summer. I should probably go mow his yard or something...

Now go buy some lights Doc, so you can ride with us in the dark...

Wow, it's dark

I cannot believe how early it gets dark these days. I left the house last night at 5:45 and it was DARK by about 6:15.
It's also really funny how one ride can change and shape your attitude toward the bike. Last night, we had a really good ride in the woods. There was speed, there was flow, and there was fun. I swear that I'm faster in the woods in the dark. I guess it's because you really cannot see very far up the trail. Reaction times get quicker and the concentration becomes more focused.
Some smart ass decided to hang a deer skull on a tree that is literally right on the trail. I'm already quite afraid of the dark, so this did little to quiet my concerns. Star light, star bright, the first...SKULL I see tonight... Of course, my brother rode past and never saw it...
I ended up with 2 hours and 15 minutes on the cross bike, in the dark, last night. Riding the cross bike on single-track, in the dark, will, in fact, make you a better rider in the woods. It will also make you a superior bike handler on the road. My recommendation is to get a cross bike and use it...

Linky time:
check out www.uber-daddy.blogspot.com

Pretty damn funny stuff...

It's supposed to be cold and windy this weekend. I don't know whether to ride on the road or stay in the woods...

01 November 2006

A lesson...

This is a stop sign. It means what it says, not drift through without looking...

This is a red light. It also means STOP...see above...

This is a phone booth!

This is not a phone booth

This is my size 46 Shimano M220 shoe. It has a carbon sole and toe spikes. If you hit me, take me out, because this is going IN your ass if I can get up!

Riding at night is a good tool to heighten your senses and realize that people just don't fucking pay attention when they drive. Sorry for the "F" bomb, but Sweet Baby Jesus, how do some of these people get around without killing themselves or others?
I'm glad I've done it enough to anticipate dumbass moves, because they come thick and fast riding through campus and downtown. I guess 35 watts of lights on the front of the cross bike isn't quite enough...
I did have a good ride though, all things considered. It was about 70 degrees and no wind. I can't wait until it gets cold, so I can have the MUT part of my 'Hour of Power' (patent pending) back from the walkers and runners who only participate in being fit when the weather is warm...
In the woods tomorrow night, if all goes according to plan...

31 October 2006

Happy Halloween

Ah, the made up holiday to celebrate paganism...yet all the big festivals are at churches...go figure.
This is my last day of being a lazy, cookie-eating ne'er-do-well. Training begins tomorrow, November first. I'm feeling the urge coming back after 6 weeks of just not giving a shit. My impulse to pull into Krispy Kreme has gone away, although they do smell DAMN good when you drive by...

Anyway, ride report tomorrow...Happy Halloween!

29 October 2006

Time change...

Well, daylight savings ended last night, not that it made a big difference in anyone's daily life. It just gets darker earlier now...
I actually rode the road bike yesterday...for three hours. I haven't ridden the road bike in about 6 weeks and haven't rolled out three hours in about 8. It was a beautiful day, albeit a bit windy. Par for the course, three people showed for the standing group ride. I really don't know why I go to these things...
All in all though, it was a good ride, through some good terrain.

I'd planned on going out this morning, but with the time change, no one ever shows up. It's been going on for years...literally! I just cannot understand why people don't change their clocks when they go to bed. Instead, I stayed in bed for a little bit, then got up and worked in the yard. Leaves are falling and it really pisses me off. I've given up on the whole rake and blower thing. I run over them with the rear-bagger mower. It's quick and very effective.

I have two days of fooling around left before I actually NEED to get back on the bike and start doing other training. The new BamBino is coming at the end of April, so I need to be fit for the Spring. No riding into it for me this year...

27 October 2006


What a crappy day. It's raining and about 55 degrees, making my sinuses feel like they are being pounded by Ron Jeremy.
I did ride last night, for a little over an hour. My stomach was knotted up for some reason and I just felt BAD, so I only did one loop around my 'Hour of Power' course and came home. The legs felt good, which actually made me feel a bit better.
I made it to the bridge in 36 minutes...it usually takes 33-ish. 3 minutes equals 1 mile on the cross bike. I just couldn't push hard as I felt like I'd swallowed a watermelon seed...
My brother had to get his tooth rebuilt, so he didn't ride. He did sound like MushMouth from Fat Albert though, and he stuttered like Mel Tillis. Ah, good times...or as he would have said last night...t-t-t-times!
I'm definitely riding both days this weekend. It's supposed to stop raining after midnight tonight and be 70 and beautiful on Sunday.
The road bike sat and called to me, rather forlornly, yesterday. I may just air up the tires and take the old gal out tomorrow morning. I haven't ridden skinnies in a month and haven't ridden the Ridley in probably six weeks...pitiful.
I'll ride a bit this week, but the real stuff starts November 1, just like always.

26 October 2006

We gonna ride tonight...

Lights are charged and/or charging as I type this entry. I'm going out tonight, with or without my brother. The ride will definitely be longer IF he decides to grace me with his presence, but I'm riding nonetheless.
His Head Office seems to be a bit harder on him than does mine, so that does throw a spanner in the works sometimes. Mine is akin to working at Google. I wear what I want and pretty much get to do whatever I want. As long as Il Bambino is fed, safe and warm and the house doesn't look like migrant workers live here, I get left alone.
If corporate America was like this, I'd go get a job!

The Cannondale frameset is definitely for sale now, as I have a new project in the works. It'll go with:
56cm CAAD7 custom frame (73 degree angles and 56 TT)
Campy integrated H/S
Reynolds Ouzo Pro Fork
Cannondale SI integrated crankset (175mm)
Ritchey WCS ergo bars (New)
Ritchey WCS stem (choice of length)(New)
Ritchey WCS seatpost (New)

No dents, dings, or scratches. I've ridden this bike less than 1000 miles. It's been raced once and NEVER on the ground. I'm a bit OCD about my bikes, so it's spotless.

$700 obo

25 October 2006


And no, I'm not talking about Knoxville and Margera. This time, it's good old Rush, where are my illegal pain meds, Limbaugh. Usually I wouldn't muddy this little cycling pill party I have going on here with politics, but Sweet Baby Jesus...
Limbaugh actually had the stones to say that Michael J. Fox was faking his Parkinson's tremors for effect in some Democratic congressional commercials. I can't believe that that fat, big-headed bastard would dare insinuate that MJF would think to act like his tremors are worse just for political gain...on second thought, nothing Limbaugh does really surprises me.
Limbaugh actually said that MJF probably went of his meds to make himself worse for the camera. Hey, at least MJF has a prescription for his drugs, unlike Limbaugh. How many times has Rush been busted for possessing illegal narcotics and/or illegal prescriptions? I know of 2, which were both felonies...! He probably has them candy coated now, so he can eat them like M&M's.
There's a special place in Hell for you Rush. And I hope it's really hot and painful. Because in Hell you see, there are no illegal pain meds to dull the ache.

MJF is a class act who is letting this line of bullshit roll off his back like he was a mallard. Nevermind the fact that he has raised millions upon millions of dollars for Parkinson's Research!

Rush, don't forget your brown shirt and your funny little mustache this Halloween!

24 October 2006

Robot Chicken - Lance Armstrong

How it should have been...

22 October 2006

Me want

F650 4x4 in action

Add to My Profile | More Videos

Sunday, muddy Sunday

I didn't get to ride yesterday, so it would figure that it was a beautiful day. Started chilly but got up to about 70 and sunny with light wind. The plan was to actually ride outside today, and I did...

Temperature: 55 degrees
Wind: S-SE @ 10-12
Precipitation: Steady rain carried to about a 60 degree angle by the wind
Bike: Salsa with fenders rocking 700x40 knobbies
Time: 90 minutes
Distance: 42km

It sure as hell beat riding the infernal rollers, but I was cold and I had sand in places that were not designed to accept sand, even with the fenders. I saw no one else brave/dumb enough to go out in weather not fit for the mailman.

Am I dumb or a Hardman of the North? Probably both...

Time to eat lunch and sleep through the NASCAR race....

20 October 2006

3 straight days

I've ridden for three straight days. That's more days in a row that my ass has met Selle Italia for a long while.
I was lounging yesterday when the phone rang and a voice said to meet him at the trailhead at 5, so I went and rode for almost 2 hours on the SS. I ate very little yesterday, as I didn't think I would be on the bike. When I got home, I had a blistering, day after brown liquor hangover, headache. I forced down some food and crawled into bed to watch "The Ringer", which is VERY funny BTW...
The headache kind of went away, but returned full force around 4 am. I decided to take extreme measures in an effort to end the battle AND win the war. Three advil and one cyclobenzaprine later, I was sleeping like a baby, if that baby took a narcotic muscle relaxer. Needless to say, I was a bit cloudy when the alarm went of at 8 am.
We went to Lynch's Woods to blow a couple of loops. The trail was in such poor condition, it took us 1:20 to do a loop that normally takes an hour or less. My brother ate shit in the creek crossing. Notice, I said IN and not AT...
After his snorkling trip, I decided that discretion was the better part of valor and walked it. Call me a wuss if you like, but I was a dry wuss without a jacked up hand, unlike my aforementioned brother...
Squishy rode great. I figured out the suspension setup, so there was little drama.
The Head Office and Il Bambino made it home @ 6pm. I walked out to the van and the little bugger smiled at me...! I felt about an inch tall!
No ride tomorrow, but probably Sunday and likely on the road...GASP! I hope I remember how to ride skinny tires...

19 October 2006


Good Lord, I've forgotten what silence sounds like. The Head Office and the Bambino have been gone since yesterday morning and the house in QUIET. I'm having trouble finding things to do around here.
I rode the SS for a couple of hours yesterday, but my heart really wasn't in it. I laid around most of the day. Chip and I had dinner last night, as his BOSS took the kids somewhere. Big exciting day...
I cleaned today. Yep, you read it right, I cleaned. The laundry room looked like a troupe of baboons had been living in it, so I took it upon myself to tidy up a bit.
An hour, and a full wheelie bin, later, it looks like responsible adults use it.
I'm going to Newberry tomorrow to ride Lynches Woods. At least two laps, maybe three...conditions should be good after the little bit of rain we've had...

17 October 2006

All things considered...

I could be in Alaska, riding with Jill and Geoff. I guess I shouldn't complain about 65 degrees and light rain. I'm still not going out in it though. :) Check out Jill at www.arcticglass.blogspot.com . It's a good blog with great pics.

The in-laws are coming tonight...oh joy! I'll be down in the 'ManHole'if anyone needs me. I need to tinker with Squishy before I go ride it later in the week. I'd like to go ride tonight, in the dark, but I guess it would be bad form to bail on the Head Office and her 'rents. They aren't here to see me anyway...

I will be on the bike tomorrow though!

I need to get back on the road bike and put in some miles. I just have zero motivation for it right now. I'd rather go in the woods for three hours...

14 October 2006

I'm scuffed

Edit: This image is the wound at 3 days. It's more of a burn/road rash wound. The bruising is coming along nicely as well. The pic sucks, but you get the idea...

I ate poo this morning on the SS MTB. I hooked a root and fought it all the way into the ground. The crash zone was about 20 feet long. It probably looked like I was having a seizure of some sort. Carson thought it was the funniest thing he'd ever seen. Of course, he is 5 years old. I laughed at him when he fell off in the sandpit, so I guess we're even.
My elbow is missing some skin and hurts a bit. I had on armwarmers too....
Fortunately, my phone took most of the impact to my back.

Bettini won Il Giro di Lombardia today. Badass! oh, excuse me, Mr. Badass, sir!

We're going to the State Fair later...us and all of the great unwashed masses.

13 October 2006


Post was removed as it was pretty mean-spirited on my part...sorry! As you can read if you sift through all of my posts, I am pretty self-deprecating, even about my own wide, J.Lo-esque rear end. The initial post was meant as a joke and nothing more, period!

Some people obviously cannot take a joke and do not need to return to this page.

Jill, you are always welcome...

First night ride of the year

Well, the day has finally arrived. We had to pull out the lights and go into the woods last night. Even though it's still daylight savings time, darkness fell at around 7pm last night. We made it all the way out and around the lake before needing the lights. Once back in the woods and on the singletrack, it got dark in a hurry.
I don't know if it's perception or reality, but I honestly think I'm faster in the dark. I think it's the fact that my little brain has to concentrate on the trail directly ahead, instead of wandering and looking around. I also believe that lowering my saddle about 7-8mm made a difference too. I could put more power to the ground in the woods and the seat wasn't treating me like a jailhouse roommate.

Overall, it was a good ride and very enjoyable. I just can't understand why people would want to ride a set of rollers rather than buying lights and riding in the dark.

18 November is coming...

10 October 2006

I'm very disappointed

It seems that the 'Secret Decoder Ring Club' has even lost the ability to wave when passing in the other direction. Sad really... I was going about as hard as my fat ass would go on a cross bike sitting on 40s and STILL managed a wave. What do I get in return? Nothing! Oh well, I guess I know who my true friends are...
Remember the saying, "An enemy will stab you in the back, a friend will stab you in the front!"

Anyway, I rode the crosser out on the road and home thru the woods tonight. In was DARK when I rolled into the front yard. Time to charge the lights. We've added one more to our little night ride in the woods pill party. A neighbor said he's down for the trails at night at least once a week.

The trail got a little washed by the downpour on Sunday. The really sandy sections were better though. My "North Shore" bridge is much more difficult at race speed than I anticipated. It didn't seem so severe when I took my post-construction walk back and forth over it. 2 mph walking vs. 15mph on a cross bike bombing singletrack is a huge difference.

I see Derek has starting posting again over at Suffertown. About freaking time...

08 October 2006


I know we live in SC, but the last two days have felt more like Brussels. Nothing like 58 degrees and pissy rain to get you fired up to pull on the old lycra.
Chip and I did a 2 hour cross ride on Saturday. Heavy legs were a plenty. You know your legs are shit when a 38/27 feels like a big gear! I felt better for the ride though...
This morning, I actually made the effort to go to the group ride...too bad no one else did. I guess sub-60 degrees, a strong North wind and just enough rain to make you mad and spot your glasses, is enough to keep everyone at home. I did a loop of the Fort and felt pretty bad. Not as bad as yesterday, but bad is bad. There is no sliding scale or bell curve. Again, it beat staying in bed and getting fatter...

As an aside, I peeked in Outspokin's window...way to run a clean, professional shop guys. Jesus, it looked like they got robbed. That place makes money in spite of itself, because the employees surely aren't the reason people come through the door. It's funny that all of the 'good friends' of the shop have been taking their bikes to Tim at Cycle Center or bringing them to me to get tuned or repaired...

I'll probably ride tomorrow and Tuesday. I need to stack some days together in an effort to jumpstart the metabolism.

The Head Office is going out of town for three days next week, with the bambino. Looks like I'm headed out of town to spend some quality time in the woods.

06 October 2006

The family...

The bikes, in all of their splendor...don't hate the player!

And Jake channeling John Belushi...

05 October 2006

Get in my belly...

So three weeks of barely riding (3 rides) and not so much as touching the road bike have lead me here. I have lost most of my race fitness and it just feels weird to ride. I did a loop with Robert tonight and it was actually refeshing to get off the couch and on the bike.
I may not ride as much as I need to in the next few weeks, but the diet will definitely be changing. Labor has instructed the Head Office that there is to be NO fried food, no cookies, no donuts, no sugary cereal, no white bread, and no foods that alone equal an entire meal. I realize the Head Office is knocked up, but damn, I'm the one who is starting to look preggers. Of course, if this time is anything like the last, I'll be losing weight in about 2 months anyway. There was absolutely no food in the house between 4 months and full term when the Head Office was carrying the first fruit of my loins. The Head Office seemed to eat everything that wasn't either locked up or nailed down. I did lose weight though...

The new 35w lights came today. I should be okay with 35w on the bars and 15w on the helmet. 50w is 5 shy of the low beam in a car...

I'm going to try to get out tomorrow afternoon and will definitely be on the bike both days this weekend.

04 October 2006

a matter of degrees...

Who or what exactly is the sign referring to?

This was taken last weekend on an off road ride through Fort Jackson. The trail winds through a portion of the old large weapon firing range. Thanks to Robert for the picture.

On a side note, I haven't ridden since then and I really don't care...
I guess I'll go out tomorrow for a loop of the Fort. Sitting around, not riding and eating cookies is bad...bad I say...!

30 September 2006


Improvements will be a new saddle (Flite Ti Gel) and a lockout rear shock(?)...
It may get Thomson stuff in the near future as well...

A roadie on a 5" travel all-mountain rig...what's the World coming to?

The rules

Thank You!

One bad and one good

It's funny how you can have a ride that completely sucks, you're flat, have zero power and don't want to be out and the very next day feel great and have a ball. I guess it has to do with the company you keep too.
Yesterday, I sucked. I rode the cross bike in the woods and hated every bloody minute of it. 2 hours felt like an eternity.
Today, it was Chip, Robert and myself riding in the woods. We did the long loop thru the trail (about 2:30 door to door). I felt really good and had a good time. There's a huge difference between the cross bike and the full squish unit though!

That will likely be the winter schedule. Saturday will be in the woods for 3 or so hours and Sunday MIGHT find me at the group ride so I can get long miles in my legs. Of course, that's assuming that the tried and true Sunday group ride will continue...and it may be a very large assumption on my part.

28 September 2006


Today, we have lost a dear and true friend...the group ride. That's right, the group ride has passed on to a much better place. The old group ride was becoming much like an old horse. It was lame. It had a good life over the past eleven years. Sure, it had ups and downs, but it was always there. Tuesday was it's final day, as only two of around twenty actually showed up.
The ride was humanely euthanized this morning with a single bullet to the skull.
Hopefully, the spring will bring a rejuvenated group and a new group ride. For now though, we are left to fend for ourselves.
When you think of the group ride, think of it fondly, as it had been a friend to all of us over the past 11 years.

26 September 2006

First ride

Well, on the new dual suspension rig. It rides GOOD. The are a few niggling little things to work out though. I need a longer stem, maybe a 120 or even a 130. I need to figure out the rebound on the rear shock too. I think I need to dial it back, so it rebounds slower. I think that will help eliminate the pogo effect that I felt a few times tonight. I need to move the brake levers too. Other that that, it was a good ride. Climbing on a 5" travel bike isn't all that fun, but then again, climbing on my 17 pound carbon road bike sucks too! I think it's more about my fat ass and less about the bike(s)!
Now when the trail tips down, the fun starts. Speed comes easily and the trail seemed to be shorter than I remember it being. I know the trail we rode tonight like the back of my hand and I still got caught out a few times by carrying too much speed and having a corner sneak up on me. Disc brakes are a good thing. I do need to learn to ride with discs though. The old 'grab a handful of brake lever' isn't the preferred method with dual piston discs. They tended to grab and lock up when my big, meatball paw pulled the lever with too much fervor. Having the front shock compress under braking to about 80 percent of it's travel will open your eyes pretty quickly.
I'll post up a pic of the beast tomorrow.

It was good to do something different too, instead of the group ride. I can see that trips to NC will be made regularly this winter.

24 September 2006

Paolo F'ing Bettini

Bettini wins the World Championship RR. It's about time. Paolo is a true hard man from the old school. No peaking for certain races or skipping other races because they don't suit him! No Sir! He shows up rain, shine, sleet, snow, whatever, and delivers the pain.

Good on you, Paolo!

23 September 2006

Found it

My last 9 am Saturday ride was today. I'm tired of being the only person that bothers to show up for the standing group rides!!!!!

See you in the spring...maybe!

22 September 2006

Hard ride and domestic disputes

Thursday's ride was good. It was quick to be sure. I think the pace is so quick in an effort to outrun darkness. It's DARK at 7:30 now, which is very depressing. We had a big group though. It's funny how that in the middle of summer, we'll get 4 or 6 people, but when the season is basically over, 12-14 show up...wacky.

Last night at about 1 am, the Alabama hillbilly couple next door decided to have a domestic dispute. Slamming doors, screaming at the top on lungs and a fire in the backyard. Yeah, it was a good one, she burned some of his clothes! This is the first time I've called the po-po on them though. We live in a quiet, respectable neighborhood. This isn't a flippin' trailer park. The marked cruisers AND the paddy wagon showed up about 10 minutes after I called. The best part...the guy next door is in Law School. I bet an arrest for criminal domestic violence looks good on a Bar Review application...dumbass. My wife is worried that he'll figure out that I called and come beat on our door. I explained that he's welcome to do so, because anyone that would beat up on a woman is a wuss and needs a beating.

Between the guy knocking on the door claiming to be from the cable company (he wasn't) and the inbred hillbillies next door, I had a full day yesterday.

21 September 2006

The thrill is gone

Is anyone else just burnt right now? I just don't even feel like getting on the bike. To be truthful, I'm feeling pretty lazy all the way around. I haven't ridden since Sunday. My back is jacked up again too. Remember my earlier post about the ceiling fan. Well, that was the culprit...
Jake and I went to the River and walked yesterday and that was enough exercise for me.
I'll probably ride tonight just to get the legs going again. I wanted to go to Greenville to race, but just don't have the motivation to try and get some sort of peak in the next three weeks. The purse is $2000 for my race, so it is tempting...

As an aside, this is an open letter to all cyclists...(especially you Mick!)
DO NOT use WD40 as a lube!! It just breaks everything down and makes your bike very dirty. It also leeches into your D/A bottom bracket and washes the grease out. I spent the better part of 90 minutes cleaning and dismantling a bike yesterday that was one of these victims. The BB now has so much Phil grease in it that it should never click, pop, clunk, squeak, rattle, hum, or otherwise speak.
And clean you bike once in a while. It takes 20 minutes to wipe a bike down completely and lube the chain properly. Granted, I'm way OCD when it comes to this, but damn! A clean bike is a happy bike...

Thursday night ride report will follow tomorrow. If it turns into the swordfight it did last week, I'm sitting up. Chasing der Kaiser at every turn is beginning to be no fun. Oh, how I long for the solitude of the woods. Time change can't come soon enough...

17 September 2006

Some days you're the windshield...

...and some days you're the bug. Well, today, I was a bug that hit the glass. The only problem was that the windshield didn't kill me outright. I was the bug that hits, gets partially immobilized, but doesn't die. I felt like crap when I woke up this morning and probably should have gone back to bed. No one has ever accused me of being smart though, so I got dressed and went to the ride. It was a good group and we did a different loop, which was a really good loop. The problem was the fact that I had no legs, no heart and no lungs. Sometimes a three hour ride seems like it goes by in a hurry. Today wasn't one of those rides. Three hours and almost 60 miles seemed eternal. At one point, I really thought about laying down in a grassy field and getting a nap. If not for the fear of getting eaten alive by fire-ants, I may have...
I would have gone faster if I could have, but the bridge and the engine room were evidently having intercom difficulties. Brain says go, body says 'No habla ingles'.
I got home, showered, ate lunch and went to sleep. And it was one of those deep naps. You know the kind. At one point, I snored/snorted so hard, it woke me up.

Sleep will come easy tonight...

15 September 2006

Outta gas

Last night was a great ride, until...I completely ran out of gas. Of course, we were at the farthest point from the house. It was a 28mph death march pretty much the whole way, which probably lead to the tank going dry a bit sooner than it needed to do so. I could ride 22, but that was about it. Boy, do I feel like a steamy pile today. A near bonk kills me for a day or so. At least I slept last night, which is a 'first time in a long time' scenario.

There will be no riding tomorrow, as my duties as a father will extend into Saturday. I really don't want to ride with the group anyway...
At least it will give me time to do all of the bike repair/maintenance that has been put on the back burner for a while.

13 September 2006

It's raining...again

At least we got to ride last night. It was good ride with good turnout. As much as I enjoy doing the crit, I really don't miss it yet. The course is still torn-up, so we did a truncated version of the old Tuesday ride.
It felt good to do a fast, flattish ride with a group that could actually go fast AND keep a paceline together. I felt really good and never really got into the red zone. You know you are having a good night when you can recover at 40 kmh. I didn't even try to sprint, it seemed kind of pointless.
Hopefully the rain will clear for Thursday night.
My mountain bike is supposed to be here tomorrow...it left Ohio just after midnight. UPS better hustle...just don't hustle too much.

As an aside, my new Shimano R600 wheels ride gooood. They are heavy and not very aero, but they soak up every bump. Definite training wheels for this winter. The K's will get hung up.

10 September 2006

Ever have one of those days...

I just didn't feel up to it today...

I actually felt really crappy all day, so it's probably better that I didn't ride. I did get my ass kicked by a ceiling fan though...
Is it just me or do the cheapo fans come ready to hang while the $200 fans come completely disassembled?

09 September 2006

Back in the woods

We rode in the woods on Fort Jackson for the first time in a long while. All of the driving rain has really chopped up the trail. Riding the super stiff Salsa cross rig played hell on my neck and back. Fortunately, I have a Marzocchi fork for it. That's right, an 80mm travel, 700c fork for the old cross rig. This obviously won't be the race setup, but it'll be nice in the woods. I also have a 5 inch travel full squishy coming...more on that to follow...;) Let's just say I'll be spending more time in the woods this winter. It helped build power for last spring...

Carolina plays Georgia this afternoon. I have to leave the house, lest I watch the game. Everytime I watch Carolina, they play like a junior high school team and get slaughtered.

08 September 2006

Darkness falls and Big George

Last Sunday was an interesting ride. Sometimes it's fun to see the dynamic of old guys attacking each other on a ride. The new, wholly annoying guy Dervin came out and decided that Sunday was his day to go hard. Mike chased and passed him on every hill. I think it was just to let Dervin know that he's not as strong in body as he is in spirit. As we slowed to turn onto to Percival, Dervin takes off again. Chip and I chased him down and pounded him into submission. I think we need to do the Swamp one Sunday and leave him out there...
I did the Caughman Road ride again on Wednesday night. It was good again. It's nice to ride with different people. Their skill levels vary widely, from "holy shit sketchy" to very steady. It was enough to open up the legs and get the HR up a couple of times, but nothing to write home about...

Big ups to George Hincapie for winning the USPro. He and Levi crushed the field like so many walnuts. People complained that the race was boring because they hammered the entire field into quitting. 120 started, 38 finished...
I say that the strong man won, plain and simple. It's a race, the US Championship race no less, not a group ride that has a sprint for the town limit sign.
Good on you for winning GH, now don't fail your piss test...

02 September 2006


Picture this is your mind...

9am, 68 degress, light wind coming from the North, sun shining brightly...are you with me so far?

Now guess how many people showed up for the group ride...wrong! I was the only one who showed. Now granted, it is Labor Day weekend, but jeez, are people so busy and/or lazy not to show up to rides anymore? I went out alone, with the mp3 player planted firmly in my ears and did 2 hours at medium tempo (22-ish). I almost met my demise when Shequanda decided she would go ahead and turn in front of me, while talking on her cell phone. Nevermind the fact that I had the right of way, but this is SC and little facts like right of way are highly subjective. Fortunately, I anticipated her move (commuting in Jacksonville, Florida heightens your ability to sense stupidity), and got on the brakes. I yelled "Thank You" to which she replied with some comment about my being a "cracker". Why yes I am, and thank you for recognizing that fact Captain Obvious. I likely would have thrown a water bottle at her car if she hadn't had her son in the passenger seat. Can't penalize the boy for his mother's stupidity.
I had a good ride though. Hopefully someone will show up in the morning...

31 August 2006

Ernesto...what a wussy!

If you listened to the weather guys on the news, you'd think that a mass purchase of bread, milk, batteries and shotgun shells was in order to ride out TS Ernesto. Granted, we don't live at the beach, but it really didn't do diddly here today. Hell, we rode 45 miles tonight and had a monster tailwind on the way home. Nothing says lovin' like a 28+ mph paceline and not having to kill yourself to do it.

This is the first time something named Ernesto has come from Cuba and not been floating on a homemade raft...

Actually did get a ride in last night

I went to Caughman Rd. park to ride with the group there. Overall, it was a good ride. Not too fast, but steady and different folks to chat with on the ride.
I had planned on riding the cross bike in the woods, but couldn't find the flat kit fot it. I figured it must be some sort of sign not to ride alone in the woods. I think I may have used up all of my phone calls home for emergency pickups after mechanicals.
Ernesto has likely forced me into the bike building tonight for a roller session...blech!

30 August 2006

Ernesto, you're killing me...

Go away you minimal, piss ant, tropical storm. You are killing my riding this week. And you are polluting the airwaves with panicked weather reports. I hate riding the rollers in the middle of summer...

If it's not raining tonight, I'm riding the cross bike...

27 August 2006

Ah, the beer ride

So I'm leaving dinner Friday night and the beer ride is rolling by the exit of the burrito stand. There are about 40 riders and they are spread out all over the road, at times even going into the oncoming lane of traffic. At the light, they just dawdled out into cross traffic and rode around the truck on both sides, as if I was supposed to wait for them. I just pulled forward when the light turned green and left them hanging out in the wrong lane. Some obese gaper looked at me as if to say that he was riding there and had the right of way.
I followed them through the neighborhood and the behavior stayed the same the entire time. They rode 5 or 6 wide and basically snarled traffic and had no regard for vehicles, lights or their surroundings. And I wonder why I get yelled out when I'm out for a training ride... The thing that really kills me is the fact that once they hit the Fort, it's the Friday night World Championships. The beer ride should be a fun, social ride. Two weeks ago there were 4 crashes during the ride. That's right...4! That's no typo and has been independently confirmed.
If you fat gapers want to go fast, or to be more succinct, get dropped by the actual fast group, then by all means show up to the Crit or to the Thursday ride.

Saturday's ride was quick. Corbett and Karl decided that wanted to get all of their fitness back in one ride. Only five showed but we had a good, quick paceline ride.
Sunday was the biggest group in a long time. It was quick and had a few bursts of 28+. I switched wheels before the ride and obviously didn't tighten my rear skewer enough. We hit some tracks at about 28 and my wheel dropped over against the non-drive stay. I wondered why my legs got heavy all of the sudden. No damage and I got back in the group at the G Mart.
This is the first weekend in a long time that I've put two long, hard days back to back. I'm tired. The form isn't back yet, but I can feel bits and pieces.
I should be fit again just about the time daylight savings ends...

25 August 2006

Out on parole

Paul got out of the hospital a little while ago. He ended up with a femoral rod, a plate and a myriad of screws in his right femur. The break was high, near the femoral head, but did not affect the ball of the femur nor the hip socket itself. He seems to be in good spirits and is staying with his folks while he mends. His prognosis is 100% recovery within 6 months.

The ride is 9am at the Fort in the morning. 50 miles or so at easy tempo.

24 August 2006

Hit by a car...

Our buddy Paul Pole...Poli...oh hell, it's something Polish, got hit by a car in the Fort on Tuesday night. Destroyed his Giant carbon bike, Reynolds carbon wheels and the femur in his left leg. He got the old femoral rod put in and is in good spirits.
Of course, with an IV drip of the really good stuff, who wouldn't be?
He's in room 611 at Richland. He's supposed to get out Sunday at some point.

The worst part is that was actually his fault. He blew the stop sign and ran into the car.

I'm going up tomorrow morning if anyone wants to go...

PS- The Cannondale is still for sale...

23 August 2006

Big Jonny...

Everyone's good internet pal, Big Jonny of drunkcyclist, is out of the hospital and on his way to recovery. He was hit from behind by a drunk driver a couple of weeks ago. El Grande Juan suffered two broken vertabrae and looks like he got attacked with a large veggie peeler. He'll be back to normal in due time. Of course with Jonny, who could tell what the baseline was before the accident...

Fight the fight brother!

George hooked...

Local hero George Hincapie was hooked today in the last stage sprint of the Eneco Tour...while in the lead...by the second place rider on GC...
He lost the race by one freaking second. A complaint was filed with race organizers, but was denied. If you ask me, the Euros have it in for Amercian cyclists. If GH would have hooked Shumacher, I feel confident in saying that they would have relegated him.

George should have punched the guy and taken the fine.

If the Euros want to win so badly, they need to train harder, not resort to BS tactics like hooking someone or claiming that every American rider is a dope fiend.
When the whole Floyd Landis debacle shakes out, and it will, I'll be here saying I told you so.

Check this site: www.supportfloyd.com

Brings up some interesting points, huh?

22 August 2006

Time trial?

Does someone care to explain to me why we are doing a time trial rather than a fast group ride? Who exactly does this benefit? Are there any TTs coming up? Why do it around the loop in the Fort? Is this just an ego stroke for the person whose idea it was?
We should just do the old Tuesday ride out through Hopkins...
Of course, someone would bitch about that too. Or maybe people are afraid of getting shelled way out in the country and having to ride home alone.

20 August 2006

It's good to be home...

We got back from a week at the beach yesterday. I've rarely been so glad to walk into our little house. It was nice to have peace and quiet after a week with Frankenstein's little brother, Timenstein (think Phil Hartman playing Frankenstein on SNL). I swear, my sister-in-law's fiance should have bolts in his neck. Now I realize I'm not the easiest person to get along with, but I have SOME common sense.
Case in point...
Edisto Island did a beach reclamation project and inadvertently created a sand bar about 400 yards off shore. This funnels the water down and creates a constant current that runs about 45 degrees to the beach. Out near the sand bar, it's almost a riptide. What does Timenstein decide to do? Yep, you guessed it, swim to the sand bar. He gets out there and starts waving his arms. Yep, you guessed it again, he can't get back!!! Am I going to swim out to save him? Hells no! I have a 1 year old sitting beside me on the beach. Did I mention that Edisto doesn't have lifeguards? Long story short, 911 gets called and they send a boat to pick up our bolt neck friend.
Between that and stomping up and down the stairs, dropping the toilet seat, slamming doors and tormenting my 14 year old dog with a laser pointer, he came close to getting smacked in the mouth.
But I digress...
I had a great time, Timenstein not withstanding. I took my cross bike and rode 5 mornings for between 90 minutes and 2 hours. The island is small, (maybe 1 km by 8km) but there a myriad of old country roads off island. 50% of them are groomed dirt. There are also a few miles of semi-groomed trails through the State park. I had a bunch of good rides, saw a bunch a wild animals (turkeys, fox squirrels, owls, redtail hawks and a water moccasin as big as my...arm), and destroyed a 10 speed Shimano chain in the process. It's so powdered with fine, silty dirt that I'm not even going to attempt to clean it.
Pushing around 700x40c knobbies will, in fact, make you strong. The road ride this morning felt very easy.
Jake wasn't too sure of the ocean at first, but by week's end, he was sitting in the surf getting hit by wave after wave and loving it.

If you are looking for a place to go on vacation that is inexpensive, very mellow and quiet and will allow you to just BE, Edisto might be the place. It's about 45 minutes south of Charleston, SC. There are also a bunch of pre-Civil War era plantation houses scattered around down there. It's pretty cool to see the grounds and imagine how brutally hard life must have been 150 years ago. And if you can't find something to do in Charleston, you just aren't trying...

19 August 2006

I'm back from the beach...

I'm back, I'm tired and I'm really cranky...

I'll post my adventures tomorrow...


12 August 2006

Ah, rain....

Woke up to go ride this morning and it raining. It's not rain that just blows through or that you can ride out of either. This, my friends, is an all day, stay in this house and nap kind of rain. I feel kind of melacholy about it though...
I really wanted to ride, but absolutely don't want to get wet and mess up the bike.

We're leaving for vacation this afternoon. It really won't be a vacation. My schedule of childcare and will likely be the same, just in a different location. I am taking the cross bike though. If nothing else, I can go ride for a bit each day. It will keep me from becoming homocidal (notice I didn't say suicidal), since we are going with my sister in law and her fiance. His voice is a hybrid of Hank Hill and Forrest Gump...only with less personality. Sometimes I wish I hadn't stopped drinking...:)

See you guys next Saturday...

10 August 2006

A new training plan

It seems that taking four days off the bike has given me some sort of fitness. I haven't ridden since last Sunday and for some reason felt really good tonight. Well, as good as one can feel in a 28 mph paceline...

Oh, and thanks to the group for turning in front of that minivan and hanging me out to dry! Nothing like closing a 250 meter gap, by yourself, 2km from the last sprint to deaden the legs.

Hopefully Robert got home okay after flatting. The Brady Bunch moral here is to quit riding shitty tires. Spend the cash for Vittorias or Dedas. Sure they are expensive and wear out quick, but they don't flat.

A request from a friend...

If you see this man, please do as the caption in the photo says and knock the chips away from him. When doing so, please make sure that the chips are either confiscated or knocked a sufficient distance away from him.

Love ya Derek...:)

09 August 2006

Cannondale fo' sale

SI Integrated 175mm crankset
Reynolds Ouzo Pro fork
Campagnolo integrated headset

or available with 10 speed Ultegra drivetrain

Sadly, the Ksyriums, Flite saddle, Thomson stem and pedals stay with me.
I'll replace the stem with a Ritchey WCS and sell it without wheels or with a set of Mavic Cosmic Equipes.


Thursday night- 6:00 pm at Fort Jackson.

Saturday AM - 8 or 9 am. Does anyone have any opinions? I can do either...

Rides can also be posted at www.skinnyagent.com
Shoot an email to them and they will cross post under the "News" tab on their site.

Hello Hello

colabike.blogspot.com is now live. This will be an online community for cycling news and events in Columbia, SC and the surrounding areas.

This will be a place to post rides, talk and/or bitch about rides, rant if needed and just maybe find something interesting. Feel free to post anything in the comments section and I'll either cut and paste it into the blog, or link it.

Now, go ride your bike............