31 October 2011

A sunday morning, in pictures...

High security at the back of Fort Jackson.

Rolling under fall skies

This would NOT be a terrible spot to build a little house...

Jesus, when the hell did all of that gray start growing on my face?

The furrowed fields of Flanders, er...I mean Eastover.

Upon returning from 90+km in the big sunshine, the boys disemboweled their pumpkin. In hindsight, I probably should have cut the hole in the top a bit bigger...

It was a good morning...

29 October 2011

Saturday lamentations

So, after coming home from a wet/muddy-ish/slick-ish CX ride this morning, I began a cursory search for a CX bike with discs. You know, just in case...(wink, wink)
Former HMFIC of Marketing at Specialized, Rick Vosper, happens to be a principle at Airborne. We go back and forth on the Twitters, so I decided to take a gander at their wares.

The Delta CX that Airborne offers seems to tick all of the correct boxes. My inner bike snob has been quieted over the last few years, especially when it comes to bicycles that I'm going to simply beat the shit out of. $3000+ on a CX, that I'm paying for? Not bloody likely.
Road bike? Yep, still a bit snobbish, yet softening around the edges, but I digress.

A $1200 CX bike is right in the power alley. And let's remember, this would be CX bike #3 in the quiver. (n+1, right?)
I'm still batting around the idea of Southern X, so the Delta CX would be a good arrow. The Jericho would be primary, but if the weather is shit, a disc brake rig might be the correct call.

I'm also open to sponsorship arrangements (read : whoring myself out). At 6'1" and 185, there is plenty of real estate on which to plaster your corporate logo. (you listening Rick?)

If you are so inclined to visit Airborne's site, also take a look at the Goblin. A very cost effective, and well-spec'd way to get into the 29er game. AND it's a pretty badass green color...

As for the aforementioned ride this morning...
It was two hours in the wet, 46 degree, windy ass country. The tarmac roads were slick from the little bit of rain we received overnight. That rain was the first in WEEKS, so it brought every bit of the Middle East's finest to the surface. Between the rain, the wet leaves, and the mud, the close calls counted 2...at 45 minutes into the ride. I dialed back in an effort to keep my big ass ON the bike. Clement LAS tires are great, as long as it's dry...

Road ride tomorrow...Outspokin'...0900...60 miles +/-


28 October 2011

Pictures...pretty and not so...

Theses guys are NOT fucking around with this flyover/under/through...

The guys at Firefly know how to use their CNC machines!

Zee Germans are not on zee dope! Years of careful breeding has led us to this point. The dude on the left isn't trying hard enough! You can see daylight between his thighs!

Bottom bracket standards explained. I understand the stuff, and it's confusing...

Every time the hipster/scenester/fixie DB crowd becomes annoying, I find a photo that makes me re-think my position. She should NOT re-think her position...

2 solid hours on the CX bike again last night. I was forced to use the NiteRider 400lux light to (attempt) to illuminate the dark. Yeah...just not the same as the 1000lux flamethrower. As soon as I back to Service Course, I ordered another BIG light. The plan was to pick up the 1600lux unit, but upon reading reviews, and doing some research, I chose the improved version of my old light. A new, brighter LED, and an improved battery, made the decision a bit easier.
And let's be frank, anything over 1000 lumens isn't a quantum leap forward in output. It just drains your battery that much quicker. I could explain exactly how this works, but it would likely sound like Charlie Brown's teacher after the first paragraph...

Have a good weekend...go ride!

26 October 2011

Dark is...well...DARK!

So I left Service Course last night with the plan to do the first part of my WeCola CX loop, then try to catch the night group ride.
Things went to plan...
I can say, with a reasonable amount of certainty, riding the dirt road, that's supposedly haunted, at dusk, will fuck with your inner eight year old. As soon as I got into the canopy of trees, and away from any escape routes, the hammer went down. I rode at, or a bit above, threshold for the length of Old State Rd. Proof? I had a string of drool hanging from my lower lip, a la Tony Martin, when I hit the neighborhood.
Upon making the turn, I saw headlights and blinkies. Yes, I caught the ride...

The next hour or so was spent rolling around downtown, having a good time.

At 8, I split of to go home. Upon hitting The Statehouse grounds, and laughing heartily at the 'Occupy Columbia' dopesticks***, my light died, and could not be resuscitated. I had no choice but to go ninja for the rest of the trip home. To quote the title of this post, the dark is DARK!! Especially when the 1000lumens one is used to having light the way has gone silent.
Riding through campus and 5 Points was an exercise in cat-like agility. Once into Shandon, I dialed back the sniper stare.

Other than the light taking a crap, it was a great ride. I felt good, rode well, and had a good time. Isn't that what it's all about?

*** - Yeah, the "Occupy" dummies has a laptop, hooked to a projector, streaming TV onto a movie screen. $1000+ dollars of equipment to watch the news, while they protest the inequalities of economy. Irony much?And HED wins best use of a vehicle for marketing purposes. Split window panel vans make me feel all warm and funny...

23 October 2011

Uneventful weekend

Thankfully, there were no dramatic occurences around here. No one got hit by any woodland creatures, no children had to 'meet their momma at the rocket', and I didn't have to spend any time with my in-laws. That alone is worth it's weight in fried Snickers! The State Fair was in town...seems like an apt analogy!

I did get a couple of good rides in, even though I felt pretty meh. 10-ish days off the bike will do that to a brother.

Yesterday, I slept in until 8, and was just out of sorts all flipping day. I did get a nice ride in though. 2 hours on the CX bike, including an exploration of some of the SCE&G property in WeCola. It would be pretty easy to put together a practice CX course back there...
It seems the fall sunflowers are in full bloom in Lexington County too!

I could hear Liggett in my head. It's a shame that I was riding like Liggett as well.

This morning, I got up and watched the WC CX race from Tabor. To say that Pauwels went horizon is a bit of an overstatement. He had a minute, and finished 30 seconds up. Tim Johnson fished a solid 17th, less than 2 minutes down.

Stybar seemed to have fun on one of the rhythm sections.

After the sitting on the couch was done, I got on the Ridley and did a quick two hours out in LexCo. It was borderline perfect out there today. I saw exactly no one on the roads. I did, however, get yelled at by some douche on Gervais St. He was surprised when I caught him at the next light and politely asked him where he had to be at lunchtime...on Sunday!
I also saw the OccupyColumbia dummies at The Statehouse...all 11 of them. Seriously people, your argument falls on deaf ears in a small Southern city.
I sort of felt like a 1%er though, as I was riding past their drum circle on a $5000+ bicycle!

Once home, I cleaned up the yard (fucking leaves...I hate you!), went to Lowe's to get a few things, and built a custom lift for #1's bed (so he can store stuff under it). I should have built some steps too. The poor fella can barely climb into the damn thing! Hope he doesn't fall out!

All in all, it was a pretty good weekend!

Don't forget the night ride. Tuesday @ 1830 from the bank next to Farm Bureau Insurance in Cayce. Strap on your lights and come out for big fun. Hopefully, Bambi, and her ilk, will stay away from us this week.

Oh yeah, the weasel-y little fucker Papp got of with 6 months of house arrest and probation. What a fucking mis-carriage of justice! If a "regular" drug dealer got popped on a similar charge (187 'clients', untold transactions, $80k in profits), He/she would be put under the jail, no matter who got snitched out. Papp should hit his knees every night and thank (insert the Deity of your choice here) that he doesn't have to hit his knees every night in prison.
Regardless, he's still a douche...

21 October 2011


...you guys remember this video, right?

Yeah? You think, this shit could NEVER happen to me. Well, I'm here to say, it happens, and it happened to Tipper last night.

About 90 minutes into the Urban Assault ride, we hit Granby Park to bomb the River Trail. I rolled off first, and the group followed. Tipper was 4th or 5th wheel. I saw a HUGE doe (a deer, a female deer...c'mon, you sang that part...) stomping through the standing water beside the trail. It jumped into the tree line, and seeing that it was pitch black, and I was concentrating on not riding directly into the trees, I forgot about it almost immediately.
Jump forward maybe 10 seconds...
Coming around the bend, and down the hill, I saw water crossing the trail, just before the bend. I slowed, and thought that someone was going to eat it right there. Well, coming in from the right, the aforementioned doe (sing it!) emerged from the tree line at high speed and just DESTROYED poor Tipper. Think Ray Lewis hitting a receiver at full speed! The deer easily had 50 pounds on him!
It hit him, and the bike got swept out from under his scrawny ass in the blink of an eye. He spun around, and hit the lip of the cement trail, then went into the foot deep water beside the trail.
To say the collision was violent, and blindingly fast, would be an understatement. It sounded like a bomb went off!
Dragged from the water, Tipper laid on the trail, in the fetal position, for a solid 10 minutes...in soaking wet kit...in 50 degree temps. As my grandpa would say, "That boy was stoved up!"
The Cycle Center crew all stayed with him, and eventually walked him out of the park. Fortunately, there was a Park Ranger waiting. PR Brazel drove Tip up to the USC Baseball stadium (2x back to back National Champions, btw!) to wait for emergency extraction by his wife.
I'm no Doc, but IMO, nothing was broken. I CAN say though, his boney ass is gonna be SORE for a few days!!

Here's a cursory schematic of the incident...

Be aware of your surroundings, and keep your head on a swivel folks!

Other than that, it was a pretty good/fun ride!

19 October 2011

No cyclists were harmed in the making of this video...

And no, I did NOT ride last night. I'll ride in the dark. I'll ride in the rain. I will NOT ride in the dark WHILE it's raining. Too many crap drivers around here. The addition of rain to the list of distractions keeps me in the warm house.

Look for a 'riding at night' post in the coming days. Yes, there's more to it than strapping lights on your bike...

18 October 2011

Back on my grind

Il Giro 2012

The TdF 2012 presentation is today. I guess Andy Schleck will get to see exactly how he gets to finish second this year. #Schlecknd

Back on the bike today too. I rode 2x at DivaCamp. One was a ripper of a CX ride through some outstanding Jeep trails. It included a 20 minute visit to the Paincave, which resulted in a burp...that really wasn't...know what I'm sayin'?
The second was a spin with Monteleone down into town and back. Pretty nice to just roll along in the S. Virginia countryside.

As for the ride tonight, the night/urban rides have started in West Columbia. A MTB/CX/Urban Assault bike is required, as is a good attitude and sense of humor. If you feel the need to pull out your junk, stay home and ride your trainer.

And here's the laatste ronde of the WC CX race from Plzen. Looks like a fun course...

Edit: And the driver who killed Dr. Matthew Burke back in February was convicted of Felony Manslaughter. Good on South Carolina for finally growing a set of balls! Hopefully this ruling will set precedent for other States to properly try, and convict, drivers who run down cyclists.

17 October 2011

So many things...

Got back from "work" late last night. I put work in quotations, because as much running around as was done, and as little sleep as I got, it was a HUGE amount of fun.
The location, Wilderness Adventure @ Eagle Landing, was perfect. There are no words to describe how great it really was. If you are into the outdoors, regardless of pastime, take 4 or 5 days and go there. Thank me later...
The riding is perfect. It sits in a valley, so you can either follow the valley road for a 'flat' ride (read : rolling), or you can ride out of town and climb the 10k to the top of Potts Mountain. It's no alpine pass, but it'll give you what you need. Pro teams could host training camps there, without issue!
I also made nearly two dozen new friends, including pro-dogs Chris Monteleone and Kelly Benjamin. The two of them are hella cool, down to Earth, and just really nice people to be around. Congrats to Kelly on a career in cycling that most would give a finger (or more) to achieve. Big ups to Chris as well, as he climbs the ladder to the top. Remember his name, as you'll hear it in the future!

I feel proud, honored and blessed to be a part of something as wonderful and unique as TotalCyclist DivaCamp. Big thanks to Chad Andrews for allowing me the opportunity. I've made friends, and memories, through this experience that I will keep with me for the rest of my life.

Some of the iron hanging on the Lodge porch...

The views did not suck....

Kelly B.

Monteleone and Loralie (Diva) near the top of Potts Mountain.

The little face you see above belongs to "Cowgirl". She's a Aussie Cattle Dog that attached herself to us as soon as we arrived. The staff @ W.A. explained that she belonged to a real jerk-off (my words) that lived up the road about 3 miles! He just lets her run free through the countryside. She has the battle scars to prove it. In light of all this, she was the most loving, attentive, and good natured pooch. "Cowie" chased me around when I was riding my cross bike, followed us everywhere we went, slept on the couch in our cabin, and met the Divas with a giant doggie grin when they returned from rides.

I could write volumes about all of the conversation, laughs, smiles, and tears (talking to you Kelly!).

See you all at Spring DivaCamp!

11 October 2011

Something to watch on a rainy Tuesday night...

...or a rainy Wednesday.

MCipollini. Tutta la Verità - The whole Truth - 2011 - HD from Mcipollini on Vimeo.

Cipo is a badass, period. Black card all the way! I may need to start figuring out how to get my grubby little mitts on a RB1000 with Ui2. The wheels are spinning wildly right now...

I'll be gone for a few days starting tomorrow. Another stint as Technical Director for Divacamp awaits. This time, we're "camping" at Wilderness Adventure in Southern Virginia. Should be more fun than a barrel of monkeys! 500 acres chock full of trails and double track. Yes, the CX bike will be on the back of the truck for this trip! I know how I'll be spending my free time...

I'll try to post some pics and video through the end of the week and weekend.

Oh yeah, and it news that came as a shock to exactly NO ONE...

Cav announced he'd signed with Sky today. I think I may have said this a month or so ago....

Peace and chicken grease!

Things to watch on a rainy Tuesday

In case you've run out of ways to cross the finish line...

"Golden Tree" by Martin Brooks from Ninian Doff on Vimeo.

Darrell Waltrip getting the ride of his life in an Aussie Supercar @ Bathurst.

10 October 2011

Monday movie

File this under 'Holy Shit'!! Dude got taken OUT!

09 October 2011


SuperPrestige CX races have started in Euro. Ruddervoorde was today. Normal course for them...
Gotta love the rhythm section...

Saturday was a good, easy ride with the group. Everyone was jovial, and seemed to enjoy the ride. The wind was howling, so the decision was made to do the IronCross inside the Fort. I hate riding in the Fort anymore, but coming home on Dixie with a 15-20mph tailwind was nice. What started out as a simple loop ended up being a 45 mile ride.
I rode the carbon wheels, and am seriously toying with the idea of selling them. I don't (and likely won't) race anymore, ergo, there is almost no need for a set of 50mm deep carbon wheels. If anyone has interest, send me a note and I'll give you specifics.

This morning, the core group of four met on what can only be described as a 'breezy' morning. We went in the exact opposite way that the wind called on us to ride. Nothing like a tail to cross-tail for the first 2/3 of the ride, only to make the turn and drive directly into a bloc headwind for the last 20 miles.
I felt like garbage for the first 90 minutes...Gilbert for the next 60...and then TVH got a flat. Nothing like taking the engine from optimum operational temps to nil over the course of ten minutes. The 30-ish minute ride home was a stiff-legged affair, to say the least.

On the equipment tip, I rode my 3x/32 hole wheels with Vittoria Open Pave CG tires today. I'd forgotten how good a straight up, no bullshit set of wheels rides. Plenty fast, plenty stiff, plenty smooth, and comfy. I think I may source some FAT Vittoria rubber for the winter (25 or 27c) and just ride those wheels.


GVA won Paris-Tours out of a two man break. Get used to seeing a BMC jersey crossing the line first. It's gonna happen a lot next year!

The weather looked nice in Ft. Collins for CX...

Horner is going to race until he gets his AARP card.

That's it for me...

Have a good Monday everyone!

07 October 2011

Simple fucks

This is Roger Hernandez. He is a simple fuck. He refused a dope test at Masters Track Nats, and got suspended for two years. Really, part 1? He posted the above picture on the intarwebs. I'm shocked that this dumbass is on the AvGas, just SHOCKED! Really, part2? Refusing the test is admitting you're a doper, and a douche. Simple fuck!

This is Joe Papp. He is a simple fuck. He's a doper. He's also a drug dealer who set up a shell company to buy/sell EPO, HgH, and (insert the Deity of your choice here) knows what else. I guess turning in everyone he knew didn't quite work out the way he planned. Begging for support on Twitter? Really? I wish I knew who to contact to ask that Papp receive MORE time on his sentence. Simple fuck!

And here's a video commentary about the Government...a legislative body FULL of simple fucks. The guy in the video? Yeah, he's probably brighter, and definitely has a better grasp of the gravity of the situation than 99.5% of those who live inside The Beltway.


I rode this morning. 2 hours on the CX bike. A couple of really fruitful efforts, one really freaking stung.
On the way back in, I discovered that SCANA (SCE&G) is ostensibly giving a portion of their land off of 12th. St. to the City of West Columbia. What's West Columbia doing with it? Building a public tennis center, a GIANT public park and greenspace, a canoe/kayak portage, and a paved/groomed MUT through the woods.
I will say now, with a large degree of certainty, that WeCola has their shit together when it comes to creating outdoor spaces for the public to enjoy. The Greenway is immeasurably better on that side of the river(s).
It's a damn shame that the City of Columbia, where a lot of us live, and pay an obscene amount of taxes, can't quit bickering with each other, get on the same page, and build out OUR side of the river. I know that most of the land is private property, but it's virtually unusable as commercial property because of the flood threat, and the MASSIVE sewer line that runs through it. These reasons alone should be enough to allow expansion of the Greenway, and the creation of greenspace to enjoy down by the river.
It would be cheap, easy, and maybe put some folks to work in Columbia. Instead, the City is burying powerlines, putting in sidewalks, and installing custom fabricated street lights in neighborhoods that you wouldn't walk in, much less at NIGHT!
In keeping with the theme of this post, our City Council and Mayor are ... well, you know what I'm gonna say...

Sunday ride
Corner of Greene and Laurens
60-ish miles into Lex/Calhoun
C'mon out!

05 October 2011

Some days you're the windshield...

...today I was the bug. Just tired, lethargic, and my heart wasn't in it. I thought about turning around and going home when I got stopped by a train on Huger St. (I know, what a shock...a train, in Columbia!), but I invoked Rule #5, and finished the ride. 1:30 of rolling around on the Jericho...

Now to help Junior Mgmt #1 w/homework. That will suck the remaining life straight out of my body.

I need a nap...
Here's something to look at...

03 October 2011


Levi says Trek sucks, without really saying it...

It seems that Cav may be going to QuickStep instead of Sky...again because of the big S. Same with Tony Martin...

Todd Branham makes good...

Michael Rasmussen needs to go away

Okay enough Euro dog silly season stuff...


Okay, we're back...

Good Sunday ride. First time doing Eastover in ages. It was a bit breezy out in the country, but easily more manageable than Saturday.

5 days on the bike, and 6 rides if I count the hour of quality time spent riding with #1 son on Friday afternoon. I'm tired today...

Speaking of children...#3 is making pterodactyl noises. Gotta jet...

01 October 2011

I don't know much...

...but I know these dudes have large stones!

4th day in a row on the bike for me. The local 'weather caster', and I type that with certain levels of both disdain AND sarcasm, said the wind would be out of the NW at 8-15mph this morning. I will admit that the direction of the wind was correct, so he was 50% right, but 8-15mph? Really? I'm no walking anemometer, but I'll kiss the "weather caster's" ass if that was the correct wind speed.
I knew I had chosen poorly when I was spinning out 12th St. in the big ring @ 45kmh, and my HR was still 125! The ride home from the end of Old Wire was a struggle to maintain 30kmh. Even riding my every day, 30mm wheels, I was getting blown around like the proverbial feather on the breeze, and we know I'm no feather...

Time to go outside in the back yard and enjoy this wonderful Fall day. I can hear the hammock calling me...