Monday, December 28, 2009

Mike "The Man" Patrick

Found out pro Mike Patrick had a brain hemmorhage last week. He's out of critical condition and slated to enter a rehab in CT next week. Mike is having difficulty speaking and moving his right side.
Please direct the power of healing/love/prayer to Mike. He'd love to hear from us so please contact him at or via snailmail at
Mike Patrick c/o Joan Cousins 60 Broad St. APT 2h Milford, CT 06460
Mike is a fighter so you know he is motivated. Let's give him a hand.

Plunging Through

Over the Christmas holiday I managed to shoot some ice biking videos and edited down a nice little clip. Hey here it is now.... - four guys cruising Stumpfield Marsh and the surrounding flood control area in Hopkinton. Ric, Mike and Mike's son Brent and I rode a couple of hours on the day before Christmas, nursing warmth from the last rays of bright sun under blue skies. The surface was textured by the snow which fell when the ice formed, making a nice rumbly buzz from the studded tires and drifty corners when taken a bit too abruptly. Cold flat ice makes for the most traction, with bumpy ice coming in a close second and soft bumpy ice coming in third- the studs break away when cornering and the bumps make for less of an overall surface area of the tire's contact patch. We had soft bumpy conditions and Mike made good use of his shorts with hip pads as did his son who used his tailbone instead. Clever. Natural. Youthful.

It was a spectacular day on the ice. Which makes for a nice little segue to Saturday's ice ride.

The day after Christmas, Mike, Brent and I ventured out onto a certain local lake- buzzing along- excited about making our way the length of the lake and then over to Turkey Pond and it's marsh. Mike sometimes rides head down and when he does, I know I'll be struggling to keep up. When Mike put his head down this time I could see he'd be in trouble. There was a light snow falling and so the ice should appear uniformly white, right? A line of dark spots on the lake revealed another type of ice, ice with water on it.

I yelled to Mike as I slowed while scanning left for safe passage. Mike zoomed on and - accompanied by a classic cracking sound - watched while his front wheel plunged through, followed by his bike and 'heck, might as well go for a refreshing swim' Mike. Brent, naturally alarmed, ran to the edge - ignoring my yells to stay away from the edge and then, realizing he was in full "go" mode, to lay down on the ice to spread his weight. He didn't heed either and a second later was grabbed by dad and pulled in. Double the fun!

So we went from a nice ride to a swim and then from having two bikes and two guys to link together and form a chain to reach our cold water swimming expert, we had two guys swimming, two bikes, a lot of water and... Brent popped out of the water, just like a cork. Not long afterward Mike was out and I had retrieved his bike by extending another, hooking the bars through a wheel to pull it in.

In my jersey pocket that day were a set of Polar Picks, used by ice fishermen and ice sailors to drag themselves out when and if they break through ice. Just having received them as a gift the day before, I could have slid them to either guy as a plan B. They appear to work great, and have retractable spikes that afford the swimmer traction to climb out over wet slippery ice. (Caution! - the things sink. Put them in a place that's easy to access too, but don't let go of them if you take them out in an emergency. The mfg says to put them through your jacket sleeves and have them dangling but I can't imagine anyone doing so while biking.)

We cruised back and I made up some coffee while Mike thawed out in a hot shower. Later I went out solo, sticking to roads and the known thick ice on Sewall's Pond.

I had to wonder what some unknowing hiker, who may have seen the hole in the ice, thought. Maybe something like "nice day for a swim" or "Call 911!" or maaaybe
"More chlorine in the gene pool please." Silly bikers.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Sparklies in the Night

The shift to riding at night is one that I anticipate with some uncertainty each year. Will someone with the same consistent zeal for riding come through this year, joining me for the adventure? Will the trails be naughty or nice? Will I ride and play in the dark with abandon, caution thrown to the wind until I hit that patch of ice before mounting studded tires - only to feel the bike disappear from underneath me- with that hard hip hit that aches for a week?

So far I have been out for 7 or 8 night rides and been joined for three of them. Some are sweet, but mostly the social rides involve many stops for light issues and head issues. The chaos is expected. The good time with my buds and accompanying sluggish nature signals the time to downplay the virtues of speed and constant rolling - the solo times offering the chance to ride end to end without a stop. Alone, I unbridle my fitness, become comfortable with the myopic 8 foot radius of vision - and the darkness that blankets me when I stop, go silent, and turn off my light to breath in the night, the woods, the calm.

Last night I did the drill- hustling home after leaving work a bit early, rushing to dress and get out the door, and the anxious ride to meet the guys in time. Nearly always, the more I rush, the more I wait when we come together. It is a force of nature, complicit in reminding me the world turns as fast as the world turns, no matter how much anyone speeds up or slows down. Rushing and waiting come together in neat packages, just like order and chaos.

We rode out to Mast Yard which is accessedvia no more than 1/2 mile of road and then onto railroad bed and a joiner trail system known as Lehntinen Park or "behind the kayak place", or the Snowduster's trail which holds the essential nature of the ride. It combines several seemingly independent systems built for different purposes- snowmobiles, trains, hiking, barge tow roads, mast tree harvetsing - that mell together when we ride... for biking.

At the lot where I met my buddies, a tree-tall shadow man called out "You guys ride up by Runnells Road?" "Yep, we do." A hand extended out of the dark and we met one of the land owners that open their gates to recreation- a godsend for all of us who use land with little regard for the owner's perspective, yet we openly receive the gift to us all. He simply asked us to keep an eye out for anyone going by his house under construction. Another figurative bridge built between biker and the community.

During the ride we passed through about 2 inches of crunchy snow with some sections having been shielded from the storm beneath hemlocks where bare ground quieted the otherwise noisy crunch of our tires. We passed through a couple of sections of woods - briefly- that were like the sugar coated images in past cards and of National Geographic where on top of the snow that had fallen, crystalline sparklies had formed during the past day or so of cold. In one of these sections, sparklieswere seemingly suspended in the air. Mike and I remarked upon it but the others had ridden right through them, self absorbed or altered in some other way to miss the kiss of unique beauty. Each sparkle was multi-colored producing a prismatic illusion. Science explains the mechanism, experience notices the mystery. Both areas were down low and next to meadows so cold air from radiational cooling must have caused the phenomenon that evoked wonder- or vice versa.

3 hours later I rolled back up to my door and noticed a slight shift- that time had passed, that something about the driveway, the house, and me had changed. Not sure what- but different and right and a bit more worn in a natural way.
Riding at night. Welcome back.

Monday, November 9, 2009

What Minks?

I rode with some kitwits yesterday.
Kit- Wit: From the root knitwit re.: people that wear too many clothes when riding
Definition 1: cyclist who wears a $200 jersey and $150 shorts
Definition 2: cyclist who wears polar expedition weight gear compulsively
Definition 3: cyclist who wears a $200 jersey and $150 shorts over polar expedition weight gear when it is 65 degrees out, soaking it in his own perspiration before removing any one piece of it and when he finally does - usually on a steep hill, splashes his stinking sweat on your oh so cool kit.
I love riding with my friends, even kitwits. Yesterday we rode in the Minks Hills of Bradford and Warner, bushwhacking at one point to Devil's Den for a ritual sacrifice and needless exertion. Nice chunky caves there and a double secret passageway to the top. BUT NO MINKS! What the hell, I've never seen minks there. I guess they should have named the area Zebra Hills and then they would have killed all the zebras, and then I'd see Minks in the Zebra Hills. I like minks. They just hide when I come riding along.
I've seen minks on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee, which obviously means Lake Mink, but they disguised the reference to the furry buggers.
This time of year, my mind wanders cuz I really want to be riding more, I become restless, annoyable, and in need of purpose in my life. I'm like a toddler who is grumpy until placed in water- grumpy until placed on bike. That's me.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Race Across My Eyes

Saw the King of the Mountains Doug Jansen last night in semi darkness, indoors. He was silent, smiling, and eyeglassed. Sounds creepy doesn't it?

I guess the same could be said of yours truly since we were exiting the Lowell Showcase watch other people doing things, eat, and get fat Cinemas. The place is astoundingly huge- but maybe that's a reflection of my myopic Concordianess.

Boys, the movie that played was the Race Across The Sky - 75 minutes of Leadville 100 shot from motos, on foot and from helicopters. Friggin awe-inspiring shots of some of the ridge riding with pulse quickening orchestral tension as Lance seems to speed from land to sky. Well, it was a bit overly dramatic, but it was real footage with several interview breaks, personal vignettes of coming back from injury, including tears jerked as some got pulled when they failed to make checkpoints within the allotted time. Touching. sniffle...

Dave Wiens, who arguably owns the race after winning 6 times, is featured but man, I know quite a few of us groan when Lance is at the center, and he very much was in the film just as he was during the pre-movie panel dicussion/inteview. Yep, the movie was presaged and closed out with a supposed live panel in a theater - Travis Brown, Wiens, Armstrong, the race promoter and Trek MTB slave, er...domestique Matt Shriver. Pretty cool, almost natural.

The movie was a great depiction of this year's Leadville 100- from start to finish. Amazing that the guys who shot it did so only 2 months ago.

Go see it, buy it or whatever. It's a thrill. The trailer (click on the wee button)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Doubling Up

Here's some meat:

It pretty much shows the 401 for what it is: exposed, fast, flowered, and a big floaty dream.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Rippin' It at Crested Butte

Holy bejeezzus! A force in the universe opened up and swallowed me whole, rendering me unable to access blogville. Until now.

Arrived in CB on a Saturday evening after calling ahead to Big Mountain Sports in the hopes we'd pick up the steeds. Dang- we'd have to wait until Sunday am. Remember the Tour de? Well, Pete at BMS has a Boonen fetish and had to put us off until after the Champs d'Elysee's bunch sprint, which I reminded him would end with Cav' thundering home ( And oh my god did he! )

At 11:30 Pete showed up and we headed out to Hartman Rocks thinking we'd get in a couple of low altitude(7500') miles before the seasonal afternoon T-storms roll in.

We hit the trailhead opposite a car dump a la The Hill Have Eyes, sure we'd be harvested for our organs if we hung around and accepted the hospitality of strangers.

Rode there over dusty trail and exposed syenite for an hour or so before the predictable lightning fueled end. Hartman's the high desert and a world away from CB's lush meadows and mountain side forests. The two areas are different and in my eyes, CB is more to my liking. OH yes, WAY.

Sunday night we spent much of the night lying awake in the hostel bunks in what ended up being a private room for a week. I pity the next tenants since we kept the "drawer of doom" stocked with stinking clothing... a stink that would take a week or two to fade fo sho. We even cringed when we'd enter the room and prop the door open to let the beastly cloud dissipate. "What IS that smell?"

Overnight, Clayton and I decided to hit the biggie on Monday and awoke to clear skies, an auspicious sign which we took to be affirmation to ride the 403 and 401. 5 hours and 40 miles later, the morning's bold decision panned out. The 403 and 401 are dominated by alpine meadows and ripping bench cut narrows. The 403 has a reputation for its steepness and technical sections. It had both, including the last mile of switchbacks grown in with bar-high flowers. East coast experience kicked in and we flew the whole 403, wondering why guides recommend dismounting and eeek, walking, several sections. Still it's fist bump worthy as you'll see here:

We kept on, topping out on Gothic at the trailhead for the 401 and after a breath robbing climb to about 12,000', began the sweetest highspeed downhill rip I've ever ridden- freakin' superfast sidecut on sometimes 60 degree slopes through meadows of delphiniums, sunflowers and skunk cabbage up to your shoulders in places, punctuated by switchbacks and crushed flowers- evidence of crashes. It felt like being on the edge with falling a non-option, so we didn't and instead cruised at mach 1 until finally the descent ended a half hour later. Giddy? Check. Shiteatingrin? Check!

5 hours later we rolled into CB, delirious with joy and fatigue. Kidz. Write down Crested Butte 403 and 401 on a piece of paper and put it in your wallet. It is one of your raison d'etre must-dos.
I'll pen more in the coming days including some pics and vids including the 401 and Monarch Crest which was all it is built up to be- alpine meadows and hours of downhill as fast as you dare.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Feelin' Groovy

Ahhhhhhhh. It feels sooooooooooooooooooooo good to be NOT racing. I haven't any series goals nor obligations to race this season and I have to say the season is going exceedingly well. Every ride is about having a good time, being in the flow, clearing clearables, and getting ready to ride 5 days in a row in Crested Butte.
TookyWheelWorks' Brian Rossignol is setting me up with a heavy duty Trek Madone Team box to ship the Top Fuel out and back via FEDEX. FEDEX, I believe in you. It ships out this week. It'll be cool and dark my friend, but we'll meet again on the other side and rock some mondo trails. Oh yes.
I've formulated a rough plan for the week there: a night of sleep followed by a day of chilling out to let the blood gases adapt to the 8500' elevation. Of course, we won't be able to resist some sort of ride on that first Sunday, so the hell with Rev A of the Plan, it's on the Rev. B - ride some on Sunday... but no real climbs.
Monday, we'll go down to Gunnison at 7500' and ride at Hartman Rocks. It's a high desert rock fest with around 70 miles of singletrack and host to the Rage in the Sage race. Tuesday we'll hit the 403>401 as a loop including Snodgrass - a long and hopefully inspirational day of wildflower bordered buff singletrack high in the valley. Wednesday, if our legs are still attached, we'll head up Cement Creek to the 583>400 and Star Pass at 12,000'. This is supposed to be a lesser known, pretty damn high and remote area at the top. I saw a couple of pics and it looked the closest to the feel atop the Pang La when I rode in Tibet, 'cept for the vegetation. Intriguing. Here's a pic:

Thursday we'll tackle Reno>Flag>Bear>Deadman's and finally the climax on Friday. Well you'll just have to wait to hear about that ride until it's done.(pssst, it's called Monarch Crest)
There are a handful of other uber rides in the area that I'm struggling to work in somehow: Strand, Deer Creek, Doctor's Park and Texas Creek. Maybe I'll commit mitosis and do them all. Time to split.

Monday, June 22, 2009

68 Miles

68 miles. 6.5 hours.

Saturday The Clayton and I rolled out a bit after 9am, headed to try to ride an elusive loop from Concord around Mount Kearsarge in Sutton, and back. With 100 oz of water and 5 power bars we hit the railroad bed on Bog Rd and rode the series of snomobile trails and a bit of road's flat terrain up through Hopkinton to the Blackwater Dam. From there we went into the Army Corp of Engineer's land grab under canopy of old pines along the Blackwater River. It's a beautiful calming place, except for the rooty overgrown trail that meanders along side it. The undergrowth is low and lime green right now. It was wet and humid and dreamlike, a bit surreal as we passed by one meander that affected us similarly- images of naked women bathing- nymphs- in the serene forest's river. A lovely place. I had the Helmet hero in my camelbak- but it stayed there the entire ride so you'll just have to imagine a Parrish painting to conjure up the ambiance.

It didn't last long as we popped out on the class 5 Little Hill road and made our way up, up, up, the not so Little Hill. "FOR THE LOVE OF GOD!!!" shouted a bloated Chris Farley. In that humidity, it was a hard effort to make it up without dabbing- something that eluded us both- mine when after coming to a dead stop- still clipped in mind you, doing a trackstand for 1,2,3,4,5 seconds, simply unable to turn over the cranks on a supersteep while balanced, touching one foot lightly and then clipping back in and riding away. A strange moment. Damn! Almost a no dabber.

Soon we came out on Kearsarge Mountain Road - past the kiosk and rode upward, getting a wave from descenders Sean Snow and tri crew before peeling off left onto snomobile trail 8, skirting Kearsarge and dropping down through a May 2006 wash out to North Road. We came back over Kearsarge via the Winslow Park end of Kearsarge Mountain Road. It's a friggin' killer but we paced it up, taking inspiration from the long views, chatting it up with some horses, and admiring the wildflowers.

Then we dropped into the forest and the descent through more assorted class 6 roads that became streams, and more streams and more streams and more... it was wet and a thrill to go backcountry over whatever is presented- full of rounded greenish coated rocks and closed in with June overgrowth, mud spattering our faces with our arms throbbing. Finally we came out north of Andover at the covered bridge. All that was left was a long Rt4. We rewarded ourselves after the last climb, downing a 16 Molson Ice picked up during a quick watering stop at Salisbury's corner store. Success tasted pretty good while standing at the edge of a field, knowing only Colby's downhill and the flat run in to Concord remained.

It was one long day with good mileage prep for Crested Butte's July demands. I pigged out later on, doubling up on Haddock dinners and then drove to Rochester to pick up a Thule long tray for $15! All Hail craigslist. (TM)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Big Boy Rides

Hey guess what! I didn't make the NY Times like Doug Jansen did, maybe cuz I'm not Hilljunkie and didn't win Sunapee, Turtletown Pond and can't climb mega gap cols like Jure "Robot" Robic of RAAM fame(and I lack a certain special sumpthin' like state sponsorship support from the Slovenian Special Forces.) Maaaybe. These two guys have tremendous positive vision and they live it. Kudos to them and an inspiration for us on a good day.
Which brings me to(sound of THUNDER!!! ) Big Boy Rides!(...echoing sounds of distant Thunder...)...a.k.a last night's ride.
No matter how many miles and hours I log, intervals I drive myself through, or fat sources I deprive my body of, sometimes the trail makes me feel like a lame wuss whose skills went out the window like helpless alien abductees. It's on those rides that I usually ding a shin after coming to a dead stop in some wet lichen covered, eroded rocky water crossing and catch myself from doing a full force face plant by busting out an awkward push up while bending a few fingers into positions that some Chinese contortionista does for money. These rides remind me of what I aspire to, to be a Big Boy(Popeye theme song).
Last night my bud, The Clayton, was carving up some more logs (Chainsaw carving garden spirits while kayaking with a MTB over one shoulder anyone?) and couldn't/didn't make the ride so it was me and 2.5 hours of daylight, a hardtail and all of Concord's woods to hammer.
I stealthed into the quarries and went straight up to the top, over the granite whaleback, past C*nt's 60' water jump and down down down to the bottom - something I've NEVER done in 10 years of riding there, crossing the tweak bridges and popping out by Auburn St, making my way to the base of the techy Hospital trails(Winant Park) and ripping my way up stuff most riders only descend. No dabs folks, just out of the saddle power and chin up in the air eyes 40' ahead quest seeking. Rode down Fisk Hill on the resevoir side at at 1 million rpms, out District 5 trail, clamoring over Beech Hill, rippin the 1 mile DH I use for ridiculous hillclimb repeats, continuing on through Mast Yard, Jim Hill trail,50,60 , and back via Bog Rd railbed in 2.5 hours. 29 miles. My reward: chocolate milk, plateful of spaghetti, a beer, and a restful night of sleep and two teaspoons of confidence.
I'm riding the wave guys: Seems like I'm on a roll. Time to buy a scratch ticket...

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Hmmm, the MTB racing gods, er... GODS, seem to have me under their thumb this year. I raced Bear Brook last year with "A" race fitness, only to flat twice and eventually break my chain. The four mile run back was entertaining, but not my idea of racing. I had been the first one to register and had been issued plate #1. Niiice to look at, but perhaps a curse.
Flash forward to this past Sunday. I'm well rested and ready to rip. My race plan is to ride steady the first lap and then go all out on the second lap. I pick up my plate and its, you guessed it #1. I'm thinking positive and am feeling I'm about to have my redeeming race and in the process put others on notice of my fitness and racing prowess, or some such silly pride based satisfaction and affirmation that the intervals and repeats will pay out today.
Lap one: I'm riding steady and away from the other Expert Masters. I feel at ease and that the pace is almost too easy.
Descending Carr Ridge, I come up on a Vet racer and let him know I'm flying and would like to come by when it works. No response. I ask him to let me know when it's good. Still nothing. I ask again as we come into the flattish swale mid way down and if it's "OK now - on your rig.." and begin to go around on his right and he wide bodies a bit and I say "Woah I guess not!" He has been silent the entire time and I wonder, iPod?, when suddenly something in him snaps and starts screaming explitives and insults. He totally lost it. I guess the pressure of someone from behind was too much for him - which he took dramatic exception to. His reaction was so full of Fing ahole fing idiot fing stupid piece of shite that I inform him he was swearing at the wrong guy- I'm on the EFTA board and talk like that'll will get him DQ'd. I pass left and he unloads again. I turn my head to get his number and say "Number **, that's it!" I'm loathe to quash any guys' ride ambitions, but this was the first time I've ever even heard of someone so out of control on the race course, let alone be subjected to it. It has no place in racing. He yells a threat to meet me in the parking lot later as I ride off and away, feeling surprisingly calm and truly astonished at his behavior. As Letterman says: Weird wacky stuff. Deal.
Lap two: I'm riding stronger per plan as I enter Hemlock where I planned to convincingly win the race. When I reach the piney flat section I soft pedal to let a female racer find a place to pull over, which she happily does. As I stand on the pedals to accelerate, my chain snaps. Noooooooo!
Here's when I think "Ok just check it out and maybe you can piece it together." Incredibly, I'm able to bend the bent plate and push the pin back in against a big ring tooth. I start to ride, only to hear nasty grinding and the chain snapping again. I must have twisted the chain when I put it together. Too much. I start laughing at myself and asking racers for a chain tool - for a while. Finally, Ernie Lozeau gives me his and rides off. Thanks Ernie! I spend the next 20-30 minutes fumbling with a chain tool I'm not familiar with that doesn't seem to hold the links in place - meaning I have to have three hands or hold the tool with my mouth while supporting the links. It's a comedy now as I let the chain run through my fingers 3 times with plates and or spacers dropping or pinging off into the leaf piles. I shortened the chain three times as a result and finally got it together when a junior stopped and became my third hand. By then I was thinking about the birthday cookout waiting at home. Beer, food... yum.
I rocked the rest of the last lap - much of it out of the saddle and flying - still some 20 minutes behind the deserving winner, Tom Barton, who had a strong ride and was able to make body and bike work for him, which I obviously was incapable of.
So I'm wondering if it really is the year for someone else to get the palmares and for me to ride with my buddies. Not just wondering really, but just slowly accepting.
The big news is CRESTED BUTTE!!! Yeah, I'll be there for the last week of July for nothing but riding riding riding 401, 403, Monarch Crest, Hartman Rocks. The MTB riding gods are smiling on me after all.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Got my mojo workin', but it just won't work on you

Raced at the rustic Coyote Hill venue this past Sunday- a day with two faces. We arrived to rain and 55 degrees, damn chilly when standing around in a T-shirt. Hmmmm, muddy conditions splattered the faces of Cat 2 racers and the guy who lost his vision while racing - heard he had a stroke - thank Godessence for ambulances. BY 1:30 pm, the day had swung to full on humid sunny conditions. Heat, eh? As I'm staged, Alan Moats makes a prophetic comment - "Hmmm, Al. That rear tire looks like it should be going the other way for the muddiness." I know he is using some sort of Zen like Obi-Wan Kenobi whammy on me. "Phft! Whatever."
The pros go off to a holeshot clusterF, some standing still while waiting for the weird to clear. Watching, I make a decision to keep the same from happening to me and when we go off, I'm out front making the holeshot and popping out the other side into a... field? Hmmm, note to self: pre-ride dummy! Yep, I hadn't been on this course-ever. I follow the likely leaders up the road climb and into the woods. "I'll just stay on their wheel and find the lines - kind of a learn as I go strategy. Smart." This works until I bobble at the end of the lap on a water hole with a muddy uphill exit. I'm cursing my over pumped fork and slipping rear tire... an extra 3-4 inches of over rotation accompanying each pedal stroke on the all the slight uphills. OK, I'll just get back on and that's when I realized I didn't have the juice, the mojo, the goods to do the do. I proceeded to hope that the others would come back to me or I'd speed up over the next two laps. "It'll dry out and they'll falter." Riiiight. That didn't happen and I was, well, humbled. Humbling is good for the soul. It kinda kicks cocky in the mouth and leaves you wandering around in a vague cloud of murk. On this day I gladly accepted my fate, bashing my head against assorted walls and finally consulting with my staff of scientists who monitor my body daily as part of the ever expanding knowledge base of Al Raine, MTB Racer.
Scientist One: "Our power tap montoring shows 700 watts for 2 minutes and then a gradual taper to zero watts by the finish line. Highly unusual!!!"
Scientist Two: "My review of heart rate montoring data reveals a spike at 30 seconds in and then gradual rising to double spike status by the end. The last reading of 574BPM is remarkable!!!"
Scientist Three: " The study of our GPS device exhibits usual magnetic activity which appears to have caused your bicycle to run backward for half of the race, which combined with your forward progress, means you actually rode for a distance 50% longer than the other racers. Astonishing!!!"
After hours of collaberation by the various scientists involved, the results were released, which stated, and I am not kidding here: "You didn't go fast enough to win, place or show, or maintain any semblance of dignity." Now there's science at work. How succinctlly put. MIT and RPI grads rock.
See y'all at Bear Brook. I'll be the guy with bells on.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Storing it up

Squirrells come to mind. Furry creatures that spend tremendous amounts of time gathering and hoarding nuts full of energy - storing them to be opened later. It seems like that's the story of a MTB racer's life: spend months on stationary trainers and studded tires maintaining basic health and a modicum of fitness during the cold months, followed by waking up and thrashing our legs as we hit the road for build phase during the introduction of spring, then moving to the sweet, transient joy of hitting the trail - poking around to see what condition the world is in and waking up those MTB-only muscle relationships, which gives way to repeated hard efforts - engaging the discipline and mental fortitude that drives us on that all important date with the starting line. Storing it up. Storing it up. Storing it up.
I haven't released it yet. Nope, it's building, held back behind the dam. Lean body weight at 150 something, noticable definition and mass appearing - especially in the hamstrings and vastus groups, mitichondria responding confidently when summoned. Which brings me to what I wanted to share in the first place:
This week I introduced race starts - those fuzzy little warm critters that live in the woods. I ride out to Mast Yard where several miles of flat flat flat doubletrack coax the effort out of me. At it's entrance, I put down a foot after the 25 minute road warmup. Then I unleash the emergency response crew BAM! Pounding on the pedals, out of the saddle for 10 seconds after clicking in, settling in to the saddle as brute circular force drives me over 20 mph, flying over the few roots and through the sandy stretch right to the 60 second point of "I can't possibly do this any loooooonnnngggggeeerrrrr! and I back off everso slightly, HRM at 171, 172, and the sickening feeling of lactic acid and hormones breaks over me in a huge wave, shouting at me to STOP! ... Then I settle in for the next 4 minutes of robust charging over the uneven and slowly curving route, easing back and forth to find hard ground PLEASE!, over the bumps, churning ever forward in the pine needle-filtered sunlight ONWARD! 173, 174 and finally it's coming... the end at 176. 30 seconds into the return trip, my HR is at 135, 60 seconds and I'm at 122, ahhhhh... the slow ride back to the start with a hit of water and a bite of power bar en route.
There is an effect, a realization that becomes apparent during hillclimb and race start intervals... dissociation. Part way through them, I become the observer. The watcher. My legs are cranking, my heart is running, my breath is even, my arms and shoulders relax a bit and I am doing the hard work while my mind monitors - as if from a distance. Legs? check. CV? Check. Mind? Present and calm? Check. It's remarkable when I, and we, get to this state. It's meditative. It's physical. It's spiritual. Consciousness. ( I often point this out to my yogini wife, whose kundalini practices take her there through a different mechanism daily. )
They've been allowing me to keep building more energy up higher and higher behind the dam, dammit! The nuts I'm gathering are accumulating into a big pile. Pent up. Waiting. C'mon, c'mon, c'mon! I can hardly (under) stand it!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Animal Sighted on Beech Hill

Last night I turned a page. Rode out to Beech Hill, a 1 mile washed out MTB climb that rips out your heart, beats it with a dead porcupine, and then invites you back home for 12 year old scotch laced with LSD. This time of year, my first foray there marks my return to race fitness. I did an 'introductory offer' three repeats, which will become 6 three weeks from now. (WARNING - NEEDLESSLY LONG DESCRIPTION ALERT!!!) The ground is uneven and starts with a hundred feet of fist-sized crushed granite, gives way to muddy, starched shirt idiot-piloted "I can climb this with my Escalade... oops... I gotta back down" tire tracks, then churns up 200 yards to a flattish section that ya gotta hammer to keep the HR up on, and then steeps out over another 500 yards of leaf and stick-strewn rumbly class 5 abandoned road past the first male born in Hopkinton memorial and flats out again just in time for a middle ring acceleration with springtime black flies journeying up your nose, or mid-summer horse flies biting chunks out of your buttcheeks through lycra. Got that? It's a good undeniably tough climb immediately followed by the return descent. This is when most who have ever joined me become terrified, grabbing both brakes as I whizz downward, ever faster out of sight until the bottom and woithout recovery, repeat repeat repeat repeat repeat - ravaging my CV, engaging mitochonrial memory, developing DH skills, toning hands and forearms en route.
Fun. At least that's how I feel every time I'm done - a chest beating grin on my face. Superhero Al sensation - one I'll take to the starting line every race. Damn, no one else does these. Supreme - and they come with a shower and big ol meal. Killer. Grrrrrrr...

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Turtle Pond, NO! Turtletown Pond

Heat was a factor Saturday when the Capt'n and I raced at Turtletown Pond. It was 90 degrees in the shade at the 1:10 pm start time. The course is an 11 mile lap with two hills being the main features, Oak Hill, a 1 mile 200' vert climb at the start of the lap and a 150' 20% grade wall at about the 8 mile mark.There was a full field of over 40 guys and an official "neutral" first climb up Oak Hill. Then the racing began. The pace was high with some trying to get off the front but the breaks were consistently brought back. I rode on point only once, feeling myself slow the group when facing the wind. There were plenty who thought riding point was the goal, so the pace remained high and hot. This year the promoter added Hot Hole Pond Rd. with the wall coming 3/4 of the way through the lap. It was enough to cull the weaker riders - thankfully since a lot of them were riding willy nilly all over the gruppo's safety zones. "Hey #554, good god man - stay straight PLEASE!" There was still a group of 20 or so after two laps. Last lap: I'm calling for the two on the front to step up the pace on Oak Hill as I'm trapped behind them but they let me through and I'm pushing on the front, coming together over the top since the wind would prohibit me from getting away 10 miles from the finish. There are about 10 of us that seem quite strong in a gruppo of 20 or so and we're doing most of the work. Just before we climb the wall one last time, 1 rider goes off the front. The Capt'n rides up alongside and past me. I'm wondering if he's gonna pull/block/crack open a fresh pack o' Marlboros or? I decide now is the time, ease by and attack the hill. I get to the top and look into the faces just behind me. Tired and haggard! Good! I'm gooooone, chasing and gaining on the guy in blue over the next 2 1/2 miles, head down in TT mode, gruppo chasing. Dang! After a couple miles the group comes over me on the looong downhill 500 yards from the finish. I slot into 7th position, recover quickly and am set up on the road's yellow line in a near-perfect sprint position. We are subject to a 200M yellow line rule so everyone has to wait, wait, wait to cross the middle of the road and explode in a bunch sprint. SOB! A bunch sprint amongst a bunch of newbies, greaaaaat. But at 300 yards out, 5 guys take off left, crossing the road's midline and box me in as the rest respond to my right and the two guys in front of me touch wheels!!! Rubbing, rubbing...EeeeecccKKKKK!!!!!! Brakes! Stablilize! Everyone is still up and I roll across in 13th and relax, having dodged a bloody takedown. Others got gauzed and some carried off earlier in the day; the ambulance crew kept busy since a few crashes happened with the downhill bunch finishes full of New England's Mario Cippolinis.
I felt a bit queasy under the heat a couple of times but my body came up some strong climbing that set some of the race's tone. If it had only finished with the final Oak Hill climb as in past years... ;>)After the close call and nervous riding, I can't wait for some MTB racing! Bolted home afterward to pack and drive to Maryland and back Sunday/Monday for fam,ily's meber's passing. I had a MTBer-only moment when a car with two Greenbriar Challenge race-plated MTB's atop it pass me on 695 late Saturday. Only we understand. Later.
Hmmm, it must be later:I arrived homeafter work last night early and The Clayton pulled up in front of the house for a proper MTB ride. After the road race, driving, funeral and catch up, it was just the Rx I needed to break out of the accumulated funk. Dirt, long climbs, rumbly granite laden twisties and power. We headed into the sunny 60's, trees bursting with lime and chartreuse in the breeze. God inspiring beauty blowing right through me.
We opted for the snowmobile trail wilderness ride. I ended up on my back climbing the knobby power line off of Deer Meadow straight up tip over backward on the super steep that was meant for downhill travel over ledginess. Hardy har har and WTF? all at the same time. Climbed the rest after remounting, passing a heaving Clayton who just plain tuckered out before the top, but not for long. The rest of the ride was an assortment of dusty downhills on branch covered doubletrack and twisty navigation off of Weir Rd finishing out along the Merrimack River singletrack well into nightfall. The power was there for the entire ride. The skills showing and my hands throbbing with trail demands greater than what they'd been accustomed to. A proper ride. Skin intact. Springtime.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Who needs pedals?

Saturday's errands:
Pick up birthday cake
Buy cards
Co-op food
Drop off Sidis...
Hey, stop right there! Sew up is more like it although I leave that to the professionals... Concord's Annicharico family cobbler. Forget spending $200 on new Dominators, just go to your local cobbler, right? Yep, that's exactly what I did before '05's Tibet ride and again this year with the pair bought in '07. New velcro, Lorica patches and the magical touch of real shoe craftsmen, priceless. They'll be ready on Saturday and until then I'll just change throw some pre-used cleats on my old sidis to suit the Eggbeaters. The photo I took of a patched Sidi I shot on the Lamna La that the cobblers have tacked to the wall made me feel confident. Ready in a week? Good stuff.
I returned home with the morning's hunter-gatherer harvest and changed out the cleats on the old pair. "I dunno, these things look pretty worn." I could just push the newly cleated shoes in and out of the pedal with one hand. Dumb racer brain takes over, reminding me that I hate Shimano pedals for MTBing.
1 day later, The Clayton shows up and we're off for 09's inaugural Quarries ride. Hmmm, the cleats sure are releasing easily, ah whatever... Beetch! My foot pops out. "Muthafaaka I hate that when that happens!" as in when ya pop out of an eggbeater and the end of it bashes into the side of your ankle - a mortal reminder when navigating a tight little rocky knar. I gave up relying on staying attached to the pedals and just started goin' for it and transformed into MASHER, LORD OF THE QUADS! The Whaleback rock? Check. Baby head clutter? Check. Hmmm, trackstand while waiting for my bud to clear the Rockpile? Check? Power up and over said Rockpile? Check. I guess I can ride like a big boy, momma. Sometimes sheer Will makes it happen when reliance on equipment fails. Easter Sunday was that day. 5 days until Return of the Sidi.
Which reminds me: When I was changing the cleats at home Jeremy at S&W created a monster at my urging: FRANKENSHOCK. He called me late Saturday with a smiley toned "gotterdun".
Directions for a FRANKENSHOCK
1. Buy a mint 20# 2001 Homegrown Limited in 2008 for $950
2. Race the SID Race on it for a season, letting the frustration of a racing a wiggly noodle fork without a lockout buildup in you all year
3. Buy a used '06 SID World Cup, crack the steerer while sizing it after you discover why it was only $50-the headset cap insert was ripped out by an Aggroman
4. Have a revelation to change out the Race's cartridge with the WC cartridge and lockout mechanism
5. Install it in the Race's body
6. Break off the shifter indicator on the your front XTR derailleur lever to make room for the lockout bar mount
7. Attach cables
8. Throw seven grains of salt over you left shoulder while chanting kirtan's to a Yogini
and voila, FRANKENSHOK.
Suddenly I wonder if I should go hammer me Mt Snow's XC Nationals climbs again. Naaaaa. Maybe at The Pinnacle, or Putney. Ya, Putney.

Friday, April 10, 2009

The Struggle

I'm having a crisis. It all amounts to an internal conflict with the angel on one shoulder chatting up social riding, a relaxed season and an extra beer. Ahhhh, just to relax for a season. Oh how I long for thee, oh mistress of ease.
Then there is the devil, complusive, agitating me, goading me with a long pointy thing, compelling me to train! Look at your weight! Ride with a purpose, not for clowning around. You've got work to do and a race rep to live up to so get serious!
Oh how I hate the devil and love the sensations that he/she evokes: accomplishment, discipline, long term purpose... hey wait a sec... maybe the devil is the angel and the angel is really the devil!?! WTF, see I am having a crisis. Welcome all to my world. Truth be told, I suspect many of you who take the time to check other hack's racing blogs feel the same way. Maybe I should start a club, or a program: Race Addicted Compulsive Egos Riding Seriously, aka RACERS. Ingenious. I could cultivate them and then get them to buy into a 12 step program. Moowaahaahaahaa! MOOOwahahaha! I must be money.
I've lost 8-10 pounds in the past few weeks following my aforeblogged revelation that spinning classes and weekend riding does not a racer make. Also drilled some hillclimbs climaxing with 5 ascents of Carter Hill Tuesday evening- 3 x seated and 2 x standing and rocking the hill. Grrrr.
Looks like the devil and I sleep well together. Not so sure about angels, soft, fluffy, gentle, kind, embracing....... temptresses if ya ask me. Time to climb. 4/25's Turtle Pond race looms., dammit.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Old Weird Harold

Not so Fat Albert here reporting on the latest, wish it was the greatest, riding report(s). Harold Parker State Forest is laced with flowy and not so flowy technical challenges. For the newbies, there's doubletrack and a bunch of bruises waiting around each corner of the rocky technical stuff, and for the experienced, a set of wild ass super fast techincal power demanding trails. I myself prefer the latter, although bruises have their place in the past. Far away past, like last week even.
Last Thursday, The Clayton and I met at the Derry Park and Ride(how appropriate) and we parked(!) and then drove to HP where we ripped it for over two hours, riding away from the guides and lofting ouselves up, over and through every rock garden and uprock and drop. Rode super solid and beefy with the turbos on. Every once in a while it all goes right and ya just gotta keep on the gas and do it front to back. That was last Thursday evening. But the tale takes a twist folks: when we returned to the P&R lot, The Clayton packed away his wheels, clothes, dish washer, etc. and then drove off - leaving his C'dale Rush upside down in the parking lot. Quite a sculpture left behind in the Park, Ride and Forget lot. Priceless.
His call came Friday afternoon while I was deep into company heavy shite et al "Oh man oh man oh man, did you pick up my bike man? I think maybe it's in your car but man man man...." he went on for a while like this and after I did a quick "Yes a bike has NOT materialzed in my car overnight' check, his heart sunk further. For all of you Derry Park and Ride enthusiasts: it is a Black and orange RUSH with shimano stuff and naturally, a Lefty. If is had been a NORMAL FORK, he would have dropped the wheel out, loaded it and then put his bike in the back seat. Bad C'dale, Bad! Speaking of bad, C'Dale just announced it is offshoring and outsourcing its manufacturing. So much for buy USA. BUY TAIWAN everyone. It's American. Kinda.
My next race: The TurtlePond Circuit Race on April 25. My god: I prerode two weeks ago and realized just how much my power has lapsed since the fall. Oak Hill just about brought and end to my"I can compete at this" attitude. So that humbling made me focus a bit and bring on some hillclimbing. The test came with two laps yesterday, under control and with decent power. Two or three more hilly rides and I should be 10-4 good buddy. Until then, ow.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Michaux Mash

It hardly seems possible, but here it is: 2009's first MTB race, The Michaux Mash. I drove to CT, picked up Mike Patrick and crosser Ricky Visinski and arrived in Chambersburg, PA late afternoon. We thought we'd check out the race venue and ride a bit of the course. Just finding the trailhead was an adventure - seeing how it is at the crest of a ridge after you take this dirt road to that dirt road- right at the fork, no it must be the other fork, oh the road is barricaded, now WTF, etc.. We started riding at 6:15pm, grateful we scouted the road maze before race day.So we start riding where the Appalachian Trail crosses an unmarked dirt road and find that the course is tight, rocky, and twitchy and is maybe a year old for the first mile or so. We descended a few hundred vertical feet on it and decided to turn around and leave the rest a surprise for the next morning. I'm feeling cautious after the first viewing and beef up the tire selection back at the bearry bearry guuud Travelodge.
The morning comes too early and when we arrive it is 38 degrees and foggy, real foogy. The highlight of thre trip there being that we didn't high ground on the road closure mud hole. It's 7:30 am. This race required a homemade number plate, so registration was mostly telling them your number and ogling the homemade french fry set up, burgers, veggie chili, fruit salad, bike porn, and costumes. I'm feeling at home with the chaos, smiling laughing atmosphere, and seemingly most relaxed promoter ever, Zach Adams. 4 classes: juniors, women, men open, and men masters(35+). And they're off!. I'm riding smooth and running by the racer clusterfs a la Derek, just happy to be out racing again and trying to temper the urgent voice of stupid racer brain since I have no business racing a four hour race, not having been on a bike for that long since November.

Keepin' in real...straightThere's lots of sharp PA rocks jutting up on the trail which led me to flat twice during the 4 x 9 mile laps. So, the lap's first third of twitchiness gives way to a screamingly fast downhill - supernarrow through a laurel forest... Thrilling us with speed as we descended the rest of the 1000 feet of vertical to the bottom of the valley. Then the 2 mile climb up a dirt road and abandoned logging road- one rider I passed shouted "This is HELL!!!" to which I responded "Heaven is at the top!" The poor bastid. During my 4 laps, there were a LOT of riders off the bike on this climb, nursing cramps, slumped over their top tube gasping and wondering why they did this to themselves. Aside from enjoying the rush of the descents, my strongest showing was on these climbs, just stroking it over and getting out of the saddle on the last 200 feet as it steepened - a good sign that the dreary winter's spin classes are paying off. (self praise stinks don't it? Sorry - just happy to survive it really)As I came through the 2nd lap checkpoint, Mike has his jeans on and is done for the day, knowing to heed his limitations when things are less than rocking. I'm running in something place without any specific goal other than to ride the full 4 hours. Third lap I flat again on the sharp rocks and at the checkpoint Ricky is standing there looking cooked and all done for the day. Three down! I push on, feeling good that I'm still with the program and talking up the course with my co-racers with a little humor, admiration and encouragement. It's about the fun , right!? Mid way through the 4th and last lap, a clean looking Trek rider blows by me - sure enough the rumor was true and I shout after him "GO CHRISSSSS! Rip it yo! YEOOOOOOW!" Eatough sure is impressive with his skill and wattage. The Champion. 15 mins later pro Chris Beck eases by- in white shoe covers - not as impressive, but puurdy. (insert sound of banjo here) The downhill gives me one last thrill ride and as I make the turn to start climbing, "Oh... What's that? You don't want to want to keep on keepin on... booiiinnnnnngggggg..." I step off the bike and stretch my talkative hamstrings for 30 seconds or so and get back on, chugging water and throwing down a few more shotbloks..."c'mon baby just a little more..." It works out and I finished in 4:22, 11th of 42 masters, 23rd of 100 overall, in one piece except for a sprained finger from an unscheduled hooked-pedal flight. I'd do it again - an easy thing to say after downing a Treog's amber, some chili, fries and handshakes with some serious MTBers. Zach and Brett put on a fine event and awarded the top 5 with masks and a royal, white "Supreme Masher" cape to a humbled Chris Eatough. Rockin'.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Dreaming a Moon

5 black cherry Shot Bloks juiced me enough this morning to sustain me for a couple of hours on the snowmobile trails. What's that?... It was last night? Nope, it was just dark as in pre-coffee, pre-sunrise, pre-throne early morning dark.
I woke from dreaming at 3:46 am and stumbled downstairs to turn off the deluxe virgin mega-aggro dehydrator. The smoked salmon "squaw candy" came out well done - a little too done after my 1:00 am alarm failed to wake me or failed to go off... or maybe I should have set it to go on(!?)... depending if your are in the northern or southern hemispheres it will go off or on in the pm or am... no wait... that's water spinning one direction or the other when flushing... I mean their summer is our winter... well at least it is summer somewhere. Then I went back to bed. Warm, cozy, fluffy, ahhhhh...
I drifted in and out of semi-consciousness, dreaming of riding on snowmobile trails and asking myself if I wanted to go ride - right NOW. By 4:30, the answer was plain and I was up and dressing to thwart the 14 degree air temperature under a full moon. 4:45am and I'm on the winter bike- the Jamis Diablo LE. ( LE is Taiwanese and translates to "wicked good man". Really.) She's been running since '98 and gets the job done like the red devil she is.
The trails have finally set up after two days above freezing for the first time this winter. I couldn't resist them with snow and rain in the forecast and another spin session scheduled for this evening. I can't wait to hear AC/DC's "It's a Long Way to the Top" for the 27th time this winter. Oh boy, I'm getting excited just thinkin' 'bout it. It's February and I haven't been able to go out on the snomobile trails even once since they've just been too darn sugary and unsupportive of my riding, the bitches.
After a 2 mile road ride, I turned on the headlamp and entered the the forbidden zone, the land of snomos. Sunday's road ride showed me things would be good on the trails on Monday and Tuesday mornings and did they come through? Yabetcha.
Crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch ... the refrozen snow talks secret code, telling downtrail snow what's coming, until I stop.... for the moon, the big fuzzy full moon... bright, dazzling, shadowing each tree upon the trail, etching its light across the frozen river flowing unseen. I turn off the lights and ride, letting the front wheel drift in and out of machine tread and ski marks. I am invisible, part of the woods under the moonlight. All the woods know I am there to be with them, in them, part of them, as each pedal stroke eases me along, calmly, heart pounding, eyes adjusted, in heaven.
Booties and a pair of Craft wool socks work well, but after and hour and a half, brrrr, me toes is code! I turn back, reluctant, full of joy. I've been there. On a cold winter morn, I tapped into the vibe for a couple of hours. It fills me and today, I'm one lucky rider, or just a foolish smiling old man with a bike. Certifiable.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


OK here goes... The chimney of Marlboro madness that is Captain High Pressure, called last Friday expousing hope. Hope in the form of trails, new trails for us, on the cape. "Nickaaaasun...ever heard of it?" with his New England harsh accent, "somewhaya out on the cape." I went to Jon Peterson's Bike Rag site... nuthin'. I went to Nemba and found a little something - 8 miles of trails, then onto and found oh... 30 miles of trails!
That led to a smoke filled mini van ride from the coast to the cape... where our hopes came true, but only after a false start. We arrived and found a bike path, and more bike path, paved, sterile, a slittle coating of snow and icy in the shade.... the Capt'n becoming grumbly and onery like he does. Then we found the goods: shoreline tight and swoopiness around the kettle ponds that are there, joined by woodland up and downs over the old dunes on 18" wide singletrack and only a few icy patches, one which ate the Capt'n...tee hee, HAR HAR HAR! He's always the one to lay on the laughs at the other guys expense so HAR HAR HAR! After 2.5 hours wee were spent and barely aware of the overall layout of the west side of the park. Sunday we took in the east side and began to see how it all fits together. There's a few features, but mainly just ever changing swoops. Nice, warming, dirty, sunny, swoops.
Go check it out and you'll be surpirsed why the pace isn't talked of more. Pure, buff, non-eroded trails. Ahhhhhh.... which doesn't explain my ice dam dripping ceiling angst and general malaise about slow work, the economy and aw just shoot me or put me on a bike. I'm ready for the healing.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Future World

Over the past few weeks, I've compiled a list of all the New England XC MTB races for 2009. If you want to do them all, you'll have to be in three places simultaneously on a dozen weekends. There are over 40 XC races alone! Add in DH, summer cyclocross, hillclimbs, short tracks, 6 and 12 hour variants and the total becomes over 60! Gee what will I do this weekend... race? I hope attendance is up this year, but the number of races will water down attandance at any one. Oh well. We'll be out there rippin it up. Good to see promoter enthusiasm.

Man Cave Update: The old gold Schwinn is looking fine - after struggling to remove the Titec carbon seatpost which involved drilling, a vise, hammer, screwdriver, steel rod and finally (I threw in the towel...) hacksaw. The result was $90 worth of weird carbon and resin smell to save a seatclamp. Not just any seatclamp, but one with a little laser etched tomato. Hio happy tomato. Welcome to your new home. All that is left now if moving the cranks, installing a new seatpost and saddle(Terry Fly Ti for $37.77!), and scrounging up a pair of eggbeaters. All the bikes are wearing them. Stylish. With the oversized Michelin All Mountains on it, the thing looks beefy.

All this keeps me going in the dead of winter without a Pugsley. 15-23 inches of white powder is forecasted in the next 24 hours. Dirt, I know you're out there.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

To Blog or not to Blog?

Created the blog yesterday and I am now having thoughts of " Why would someone read it?" "What's good content?" and "Why bother?"
Then I settled on "Why not? It's a log I can look back on to activate fading memory."
1. Practical.(A place to post)
2. Indulgent.(Forgive me -it's all about my perspective, but maybe someone will enjoy or find a golden nugget amongst my ramblings.) and WTF? it's
3. Inconsequential.

I'm heading for spin class tonight - an hour of high output on poorly maintained Giant spin bikes in a room of overweights desperate for better self image and social intercourse. Intercourse, good. I wonder if the instructor will play Michael Jackson's "Beat It" again.
Better put some tissue in the ears, just in case.

P.S. The Tour Down Under is underway and the Lanceroo's hopping mad.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Quiver

Decided to rip down the stairs this morning on my buttcheeks. Which got me to thinking: Hmmmm, wool and wax - I wonder if it would be quicker than the new RED? Think of it... SRAM ASSBUMP '10. I guess the fiber bearing system might have a few bugs to get past. Possiblities! Ah, Nevermind.
My quiver in the man cave just welcomed a new addition: a gold ano Homegrown Ltd frame - the one I busted at Landmine 2004. After two years, one of the original Fat Chance welders came through. She's lookin' pretty sassy "Ride me big boy, but build me up first." She calls out every time I walk by, swinging her top tube at me... I'm having a hard time walking by acting disinterested. Gotta conduct some surgery soon, moving a REBA Team from the race rig to her and cut out the other organs from my HG Pro whose dropout committed hari kari at FOMBA a year ago. I'm coming darling! She senses I've had others but I keep them at a distance. She's gonna cry when I wheel down the other gold ano HG LTD from the mud room, I just know it. Women.