31 December 2007

Harden the F*ck up

This dude is harder than all of us...

Shit like that is the reason I have four wheel drive...

30 December 2007


I'd planned on riding the cross bike today, but the weather put the kibosh on that idea. If I wasn't injured, I would have gone out, but the thought of crashing again wasn't a pleasant one. Doogie went out and said he needed a snorkel. I did a quick spin on the trainer, which sucks in so, so many ways...
The good news is the fact that it really didn't hurt. I won't be able to go very hard on the road, but the action itself brings no pain.

We're leaving the traffic circle @ 9:30 on New Year's Day for a jaunt around Eastern Richland county. Prepare for a good 3 to 4 hours in the saddle.

29 December 2007


Woke up to drizzle and wet roads...bike is clean...didn't feel like getting wet...
Ribs hurt like a bitch...the way my luck runs, I'd hit a line on the road and eat it again...
Weather induced headache...was I concussed?
Not a lot of motivation...

Did I ride...Hells no!

I ate brekkie with the family, went to Target and Publix and now we're going to look at a house.

Powertap is on Ebay...(search Powertap SL custom)
I'll let it go for $750...

28 December 2007

Man down...

So Chip, Doogie and I made our way to FATS yesterday for a long mountain ride. First, let me say that FATS is better than ANYTHING else in SC. It makes Newberry look like a cow track and Harbison isn't even worth mentioning in the same breath. It's a properly built trail where you can pick up speed, kept some flow and get your HR up on the climbs.
Okay, now on to the action. We got there @ 9:30 and were on the bikes by 9:45. It was a perfect day to ride. 55 degrees and cloudy. The trail was a bit damp, but by no means sloppy. We completely missed the turn for the first loop of the 4 and just continued on down the track to the beginning of the rest of the trails. The bottom three loops are inter-contected at one trail head and go off in different directions.
The first trail was uneventful and quite fun. It was only the third time I'd ridden the new 29er, so I was getting more comfortable and a bit faster. About a mile into the second loop, there is a downhill whoop-de-doo section. Chip and Doogie were about 100 yards ahead, so I foolishly tried to make up ground in this section. The whoops got progressively bigger and closer together. Everyhting was fine until I landed in the transition between the 3rd and 4th bump. When I landed, the fork compressed into the face of number four and shot me off the lip like a I was attached to a booster rocket. I landed HARD and the bike just came out from under me. I augered into the ground like a human lawn dart. Bike, body, bottles and glasses went in four different directions. It was...a yardsale! I had the breath knocked out of me pretty good, but could still assess the severity of my injuries. Fortunately, the only shooting pains I had were on my right elbow and right hip. My elbow looks llike the tiger from the San Francisco Zoo got a grip on it and my hip bears a rather large strawberry. Nothing broken though, which is a big plus. I'm REALLY fucking sore this morning though! We'll see how I do tomorrow on the road ride!
I got up, cleaned off, got laughed at by my compatriots and we continued on our merry way.

We hit all four sections, @ 25 miles of pure singletrack in 3.5 hours, including time for crashes and breaks. I will be going back!

Nick gets the hardman award for doing the entire ride on his cross bike! All the bikes were DIRRRTY and all of us were less than clean.

I'd planned on riding today, but the H.O. is very Type A and felt the need to go into work, even though she had the week off...

Time to go take some Advil...

Edit: and after further review, I broke my Giro Pneumo when I hit my head on the hard Earth. I knew I hit my head, but had no headache or other ill effects. Big kudos to Giro! Wear your helmet kids!

24 December 2007

Christmas Eve

I felt marginally better this morning, so I did what any other self-respecting cyclist would do...I got dressed and rode for two hours.
I hit the HoP(tm) loop down by the river, hit all of the trails and then did my standing climb up Gervais Street. I felt horrible when I left the house, but the ride forced out a lot of the bad stuff, so I extended my morning adventure and included another run through downtown and all of the parking garages on campus. It was idyllic outside this morning, so I felt a bit guilty about only riding for two hours. Christmas duties call, and like the guys at NORAD, I have to answer.

I feel 100% better after the riding. It's funny how a quick spin on a bike makes you feel a little more centered.

The animals (no, not the kids) are getting bathed in about 10 minutes. Oh, how they love the tub. They need it though and I refuse to take stank dogs to my mother's house for Christmas.

Chip and I are heading to FATS on Thursday morning for a 3+ hour mountain ride. If anyone is interested, shoot me an email or comment on here. It's about 25 miles of blisteringly fast singletrack. Nothing too terribly difficult...

Anyway, peace and love...Merry Christmas!

23 December 2007

bad, just bad...

A very small group showed yesterday for the 9 a.m. ride. I knew I was in trouble the moment I clipped in and rode out of the yard. Thankfully, the the ride wasn't a blood-letting, but I felt like shit nonetheless.
I've been fighting yet another headcold...thanks to #1 and the other little walking petri dishes in his pre-school class. As the ride progressed, the drainage down my throat reached my stomach and made me feel, let's say, not so good. I couldn't eat or drink, as that just upset it more, so a borderline bonk was the theme of the day.
We did the Eastover loop and ended up with 55 miles and just a tick over three hours on the bike. I knew the second half of the ride was really going to suck when I could do nothing more than sit in while going down Chaingang. The one place where I can usually open up and be a bit aggressive and I was hanging by a thread @ 28mph. From the GMart, we rode home piano, thankfully.
I got home, showered and loaded up the van with the spoils of Christmas. It was pure American consumerism run amok. #1 and I went to the Bluehairs to deliver the booty.
I developed a nasty headache/migraine while out there. I took some OTC pain meds, but that's like pee-peeing on a forest fire. When I got home, I ingested a Vicodin and a cyclobenzaprine. They knocked it out, but I didn't sleep well and I got up this morning in a bit of a drug-induced fog.
I really wanted to ride, but the combo of the rain, wind and the best the pharma companies could offer threw a spanner in the works. It's okay though, the H.O. is off tomorrow, so I'll be out in the morning.

21 December 2007

Everyone sing...


Another downtown Hour of Power (tm) ride went off for me last night. I did more of a 90 minutes of power ride though. After almost dying immediately after I left the house (asshole in a pickup), I made my way to CC to fix my front brake cable. When the aforementioned hillbilly decided to turn directly in front of me, I nailed the brakes so hard that the front cable popped. Time for new brake cables...The Salsa needs all new cables and housing anyway!
Once I got going again, the ride was pretty uneventful. The Greenway was empty, which is a bit shocking considering it was 60 yesterday.
I rode up through the Vista and onto campus. I hit every parking garage on campus. It's amazing how spacious the new garages are and how truly claustrophobia inducing the old garages can be. Anyway, they were all mostly empty, so they were used for some good power training.
After the last garage, I rode the path up past Bates House (memories), through Shandon and home.
Il Professore came over to settle his debt. About time too...! I was about to send some dudes with no necks or senses of humor to his house to get my money.
The wrapping of Christmas gifts starts tonight. Oh joy...

See you guys in the morning...and don't call me to see if I'm riding. If it's not raining and/or 28 degrees, you can pretty much count on it.

19 December 2007

No ride, but a funny...

Many times when I am troubled or confused, I find comfort in sitting in my back yard and having a scotch and cigar along with a quiet conversation with Jesus. This happened to me again after a particularly difficult day.
I said 'Jesus, why do I work so hard?'
And I heard the reply: 'Men find many ways to demonstrate the love they have for their family. You work hard to have a peaceful, beautiful place for your friends and family to gather.'
I said: 'I thought that money was the root of all evil.'
And the reply was: 'No, the LOVE of money is the root of all evil. Money is a tool; it can be used for good or bad.'
I was starting to feel better, but I still had that one burning question, so I asked it. 'Jesus,' I said, 'What is the meaning of life? Why am I here?'
He replied, 'That is a question many men ask. The answer is in your heart and is different for everyone. I would love to chat with you some more SeƱor, but now, I have to finish your lawn.

17 December 2007

16 December 2007

Quick hit

What a difference a day makes...
Yesterday was cloudy, warmish and little wind.
Today is sunny, cold and windy...I rode anyway. I'm just that hard. I did about 90 minutes on the cross bike out in the wet, wind and cold. It's a bit damp down by the river. I will say though, I got a bit Paris-Roubaix when I hit the dirt road that runs to the parking lot. It was really wet and muddy, so I stomped the big ring and passed a minivan, much to the shock of the passengers. Good stuff...
I had a massive tail up Gervais and through campus. A few trip up the parking garages and then home.
The H.O. is Christmas shopping. She's just a glutton for punishment. I'd rather take a shot or five to the beanbag rather than go to Harbison 8 days before Christmas. The management trainees are at the bluehairs for the afternoon.
I think I'm headed to the couch!

15 December 2007

Good Saturday

Low clouds and much cooler temps got the day started. After an unseasonal week of 70 degree temps, 52 degrees felt like absolute zero when I stepped outside this morning. The air was thick was moisture too. You felt it, but it was easier to breathe than the normal winter air.

The group was good sized and few pipe hitters were in attendance. The group rode piano for the first half of the ride. As usual, once we got to Chaingang, the pace quickened. RW took off and LL went with him. I let a gap go a bit and then chased across. The group of 10 quickly became a group of 6 over the bump. The remaining half dozen ran into Eastover at 50kph. I took a good dig about a click from the town limit sign and then sat up.

From Eastover to the GMart, we rode somewhere between piano and tempo...mostly tempo. Rain was threatening, so the stop at the store was just enough for a break naturel and a Lipton tea. From the store to Pineview was again, a nice tempo. From Pineview to Shop was quick and the pace went up again once the turn was made. RW punched it wide around the turn and attacked. Reed and I chased a bit, but the gap didn't come down until Der Kaiser hit the front. The four of us joined up and made the run across the bridge. I led it out to the sprint @ 50kmh into the headwind. RW said he was tired, but jumped around to take the bridge.

All in all it was a great ride and perfect training. I got 3:05 on the bike and right at 90km.

I installed the ceramic pulleys. I don't know if they are any faster, but they are definitely smoother and the shifting was much crisper. I was shocked how worn the old pulleys were when I pulled them off. They look damn cool too!!! I bought red pulleys, on the advice of our resident style guru, Il Professore. I had to be sure that the BB and the pulleys matched. I know a bicycle is just a tool, but no one said it can't be a stylish tool.

This is as far as the red goes though...I will not become an OCP!

14 December 2007


Doogie and I met early yesterday and did an urban assault/cyclocross loop. It was nice to be able to to the majority of the ride in the daylight. #1 got a pass to stay home yesterday, so the H.O. bailed out of work a bit early to spend some QT with the management trainees.
My day started with a trip to the zoo. #1 loves the zoo and yesterday was a perfect day for it. It was about 70 degrees and the place was empty. The animals were all very active as well. We were there in the late morning through lunchtime. I guess lunchtime crosses species. It was good fun and I got some great pics with the new camera and the long lens.
As for the ride, we did the normal downtown loop and then went across the canal to check out some trails. They went directly downhill into a swamp...great. We rode out, did a loop of the cemetary and then made our way back through downtown and campus. I ended up with right at two hours on the bike, but had very tired legs. Walking around the zoo with a two year old and pushing an 8 month old is work.
The H.O.'s Christmas part is tonight...oh joy! I usually work another Christmas party, but we couldn't come to an agreement on my renumeration. I've worked that party for 6 years, know all of the people and they wouldn't meet my demands for salary. Have fun with the stiffs you hired...!
Anyway, the ceramic pulleys came in and need to be installed. I don't know if I'll get to it today or not. Hopefully, #2 will nap and I can swoop down to The ManHole(tm) to slap them on the bike.
I'm thinking of selling my PowerTap too, if anyone is interested...

See you guys in the morning...

12 December 2007

How I long...

Oh, how I long for the Holidays to be over so that all of the "get out of my way, I'm in a hurry to get my gifts to the house" folks slow the F down and pay attention to their surroundings. I'm glad I have good handling skills on the bike, because they came in handy last night.

I decided to go out and ride, even though I really wasn't motivated. I hate wasting a 75 degree day though. I left the house @ 5:45 and it was still 70! Brilliant! Anyway, I mixed up my downtown route a bit last night. I dropped down through the old projects, where they are now building $200k+ houses (head scratcher) and went up past The Roost and soccer field. The climb out from the bottom all the way to the Horseshoe is a long one, but didn't hurt all that much. The normal 'Hour of Power'(tm) continued from this point.

The ride through North Main is where the action began. I got buzzed by a 3 foot tall Asian guy. His mirror missed my hip by about 3 inches. Granted, I'm a bit thick in the posterior, but come on...! I don't think he could see over to dash.
Once I got to the Greenway, the pace picked up a bit and I started to open up. It's funny how people come out to exercise when it's above 60 degrees. The Greenway was packed! The LED light on strobe moves them right out of the way though. One bigger than average sized guy heard me coming on the gravel and, of course, stepped right in front of me. If you hear something coming from behind you, on your left, why do you step left sir? I narrowly avoided incident number 2.
The ride from the trail, up throught the Vista was uneventful, thankfully. I dropped into campus, went past TVH's house and hit the path into Five Points. I had two more near misses in a 1/2 mile stretch of Harden. The first was some dumbass backing his POS truck into the middle of the road...without so much as a glance, and the second was with a Buick driven by Methuselah's brother. He decided he need to get to the red light before me, so he gunned it around and swerved dead in front of me at the light. I knocked on his window, by he never even turned his head. Maybe he couldn't...!
At this point, I headed for the relative safety of Shandon and made it back to the house.
I had a good ride, opened up the legs and got to practice emergency braking and evasive avoidance tactics.

I'll be back out on Thursday, if anyone wants to ride. The downtown loop might be nixed in favor of the woods though...

09 December 2007

I Heart Global Warming...

Saturday started out as a cloudy day, but the temperature made up for it. The group was pretty good sized, even though a few were nursing the effects of too much alcohol consumption. We headed out and did the regular Thursday loop, but included a loop that lead to Zeigler and on to the GMart. The group stayed together and we rode piano for the entire ride, which was a welcome change from last weekend.
A) I didn't feel like entering the Pain Cave (tm)
B)I was as flat as flat could get..
...dead legs, no HR, not a lot of motivation. I took my pulls, begrudgingly, and listened to music.
It was a bit shorter than usual as well, which was fine, as I promised #1 that we'd go to Winnsboro and ride the Santa Train. Let's just say, it was a huge hit! Then the Company went to the BlueHairs house and I installed the new HDTV setup.
I was TIRED when my head hit the pillow last night...

This morning, Doogie and I did an urban assault ride. We rode EASY and I flatted twice. I think there's something wrong with the wheel I threw on the bike. EVERY time I ride that wheel on the back, no matter what the tire or bike, I get a flat. The second flat came about a mile from the house, so I rode the bitch home. I was well within the 2km rule. I didn't even bother to fix it...
The Company loaded up again and went in search of a Christmas tree, to no avail. With the way the H.O. pinches pennies, you'd think she'd be celebrating the Festival of Lights. $50+ is way too much to spend for a 4 foot tall tree though...
With the failure of the tree search, we went to Ritz Camera and bought a digital SLR. The film camera is in for repair and we needed a camera, so why not a 10.1mp Canon?
I decorated the house when we got home and now, I sit here and punch out this entry...

I'm tired. I need Monday to come around so I can get some freaking rest....

07 December 2007

No ride

I had to bail on Doogie last night. It seems our dryer felt the need to suffer a catastrophic failure yesterday. It may just be me, but 3.5 hours to dry a load of clothes doesn't seem like an effective use of energy.
We loaded up and went to Sears. It was probably the easiest sale they had all day. Walk in, point at a dryer, pay and walk out.

I'll definitely be out in the morning...this two or three day a week crap has to stop!

Mandrus' Six13 showed up at the house yesterday. He got the Lampre team bike. It's pretty nice looking. I can't wait to tackle the Hollowgram SI adapter. I'll post it up when I get it started...

05 December 2007

Good and Bad

I went out solo last night and did my old school, downtown, hour of power loop. Actually, last night was more like 40 minutes of power, but I'll get to that in a moment.
The weather was perfect, about 55 and very little wind. I rode up through campus, across the Statehouse complex and hit Main Street. I really like riding through town at night. You tend to see things a bit more clearly and notice stuff that usually gets passed over.
I made it down to the Canal and started my interval. I went 48/15 all the way from the beginning of the gravel, the entire length of the the Canal trail and to the old powerplant. It stung a little bit, mainly because of the cold night air, but didn't feel altogether bad.
I popped up out of the park and made my way across the big intersection on Huger St. Here's where the ride forcibly became slow. When I sprinted across the light, the telltale "ka-pang" of a broken spoke filled the night air. I was on the Ultegra built wheels. The combination of the the fat spoke and the high tension made the break sound like a gunshot. I stopped and man-handled the spoke a bit, so it wouldn't dick up the frame or my leg.
Normally, I bomb around in the Vista a bit and then climb out on Gervais St. Fearing the wheel would fail completely, I limped home on back streets.
It was a good ride overall though. I got out of the house, did a good interval and it's only gonna cost me about $20 to fix the wheel. Life moves on...

Christmas is 19 days away...I should probably start shopping...

Oh well, time to start my day. Errands abound this morning. Staying home with the kids is no easy task. What I would give to be 20 years old again and be able to laze about at some 5th rate, liberal arts school. If anyone thinks what I do is easy, feel free to step up and try it for a few days. #1 will whip you within 8 hours!

03 December 2007


07 Mavic Ksyrium SL3 wheelset
700c (obvi...)
Shimano freehub
Low miles...(maybe 1000)

I just don't ride them!

$450 obo

They're going on Ebay tomorrow...

02 December 2007

Early weekend update

Saturday was just about the perfect winter day to ride. It was 38 when I left the house, but got warmer in a hurry. When the group got to the egress of the Fort, most of the folks shed at least one article of clothing. This theme continued throughout the ride, until we all looked like we had some sort of lumpy tumors growing from random spots on the body.
The ride started off mellow enough. We rode piano all the way out Leesburg and up Congress. NID had a flat on the climb, so a few of us stopped to wait. The rest stopped about a click up the road. Once going again, the pace picked up, but only slightly. This is where the story of the long, slow group ride comes to it's fruition.
After the right hand turn onto Chaingang, all bets were off and hammer met anvil. All I know is that three took off, leaving the rest of us to chase. They were about 200 meters ahead when I decided to jump into the chasm and attempt the bridge. I got within about 25 meters (at 60kmh) and pulled off for someone else to finish it. Well, Doogie was the only one there and he jumped across. I waited for the line to come by, and it did, with Der Kaiser on the front. To quote Phil Liggett, I was 'on the rivet' and 'the elastic was stretched tightly'. I barely caught the line and was able to recover for the remainder of the 50kmh+ run down to Eastover.
NID pulled off and then promptly pushed his way back into the line @ about 500 meters from the sprint, nearly pushing British Andy into the ditch. Your head is on a gimble...turn it! At this point, I was boxed in and watched RW ride away to take it with ease. Just a tip NID, you cannot lead out a sprint from 6th in line.
The pace got turned down from Eastover, through Zeigler and to the Cricket store. After our short break for fuel, we all meandered out of the parking lot. A few guys were up the road and the rest of us believed they'd wait...wrong answer!
Der Kaiser, LL and RW were gone and had no plans to come back. The chasers (me included) had a nice paceline going until the rise on Airbase. A phone escaped from a pocket and the bunch was shattered. I buried myself for the entire length of Airbase and it HURT!
We came back together at the store and rode in together. Der Kaiser attacked about 1km from the bridge sprint. I was waiting for it and jumped across to him with relative ease. I sat on for about 250 meters and then popped him at the line.
All in all, it was a really good ride. We did 85km (55miles) in 2:45 and it had some quality sections of suffering. Although I believe it's too early to be venturing into the Pain Cave, it kind of felt good! I saw 30 second, 1 minute and 5 minute wattage records yesterday...in November...crazy!

Oh, and there was a new Madone on the ride yesterday...puke...

No ride today...
It's 45 degrees...
and spitting rain...
Call me a wussy if you like, but QuickStep isn't writing me a check to ride in shit weather. Come February, my tune will change, but right now, I'm staying in the warm house.