Friday, June 29, 2007

Whew, at least I am not pregnant

Well the sonogram, yes sonogram, ruled out pregnancy as a stomach issue for me. That sure is reassuring. Step three in the medical process of determining my GI ailment is done. GP, Gastro, Ultrasound, next up is endoscopy & biopsy, followed more than likely by the beloved colonoscopy. I should get all test results after the endoscopy next Tuesday. I just need to wait on more bloodwork and the colonoscopy after that. So hopefully something is nigh.
A funny anecdote came from my endoscopy scheduling. The nurse sadi I could get it done yesterday or today, when I was scheduling two weeks ago. I stammered and replied, "I have a big race that weekend and really do not want to interfere, I know that is stupid." She retorts back in a absolutely beautiful sly sarcastic tone. "No problem, you have put this off for six months already, another week will not hurt." It was priceless.
So I am not feeling well, GI wise, yet again. As John from Cincinati says, "I had a man-size dump today." Sorry for the candor of info, but this was part and parcel of my GI hell. Hopefully all resolves quickly as the coolest MTB race on the planet is this weekend. More to follow. I think I will do another pictorial update of the Farm stage race.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

The day in pics

I have been putting in the hours at the shop of late. It is a good thing, that way I can stay occupied. Below is the cast of charecters, minus our boy Reds Snoresney.

The Man, Big Al.
Best buddy & little buddy.

So this is what a pro looks like? Clown on the right.

Now that is pro.

Old school wrench, Jeff.

Guess the shaved/bald guy. I am a "mechanic", not a magician.
Good times. Crazy customers. A guy is pissed that a used wheelset has some minor cracks and has to get it fixed. I end up selling him a new $300 set and he thanks me profusely for making his day. Keep in mind, that as all bike gamers know, $300 retail is pretty freaking cheap. I have two sets that are double that cost, at 20% under wholesale. Lady brings in a bike with the tire mangled and the tube wrapped around the fork. I am snapping pics as Al tells her it will cost $70 to fix all her bike issues. She replies that she paid $70 for the bike at Wal-Mart. Yes, please fix it. WTF!?!?! A guy is in with his son. Son wants to start racing, dad thinks he will be great. I end up showing them all high end carbon. Time, Trek, Lemond, Giant. I bet the kid gets a TCR 1 as his first bike later this week. This will be a $3,000 sale, for a first bike. Holey moly. DAAA was in the shop. He still managed to give Ray shit for not riding a RIGID single blingle at Stoopid 50. Daaa, gears are for queers. Just wait until he sees the new 31'er from Fisher.
For all those who play along in Legendland and patronize/hang out at shops, do yourself a favor and rent High Fidelity. This movie just substitutes a record shop for a bike shop. I made this connection about five years ago with the shop. It totally fits. NYCbikesnob also wrote about this recently.
Off to a work meeting Monday-Wednesday. I am sure I will have some stellar material.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

State of disrepair

Man was I wrecked after Neshaminy. No offense to anyone in the 40+ class, but I shut it down with 2 laps to go. Not two 1 mile crit laps, mind you. Two 6 mile 37-40 minute mtb laps. I could tell my body was a hurtin' unit. That race was a new level of suffering, mental & physical for me. Had it not been for Ray's parents who were handing up bottles or Ray/ who paid my entry I may have thought of bagging it.
The course was so sweet, but the 95 temp and three thousand logs turned my lower back into a knotted mess. After years of 75-90 minute crits, a 2:30 mtb race with an avg HR of 173 is a whole new level. So today, Wednesday, I am still tired. I may need to race the road this weekend so I get some efforts, without the beating.
On the GI note my gastro appt went as I expected it. Questions, poking, prodding and schedule an appt for an endoscopy/biopsy. So my Independence day starts a day early with the appt on the 3rd. At least then I will know what, if anything, is amiss in the upper GI. If I "fail" that test then I get the good fortune of the "output" end scope.
On the ink note, I think I am going to make an appt this weekend to run a design idea by an artist. The one I really want may be a little too big to cover/mesh with the present design. I saw another cool Phoenix (mythical bird, as if you did not know) design that would be cool. If you wonder why the Phoenix, do some quick reading as to what the bird is and I think you will agree that it fits pretty well.
Past was good, future is better.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Guess the "healthy" one

I have kept the blog basically "image free" until now. Hopefully I will not digress into some crack whorish fix for pics. Today's image is basically a metaphor for the blog, and me for that matter.
It is guess the "healthy" ankle quiz. Which, like myself, even when "healthy" I am still a little misshapen if you will.
I broke a bone on the side of my ankle & severely sprained it warming up for a race. I then proceeded to the ambulance for some tape and a small Mexican Pharmacia worth of Ibuprofen and proceeded to race. Yeah baby, I still won. Small race, but a win nonetheless. Legendary, is it not? Oh SNAP, I am a doper! Oh no, I suck. Just read the wristband.
I hope the MASS Blue Coats are not piss testing tomorrow.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

School was in session tonight

I got to ride with Banana Smallhamfudgepeckerpacker tonight. Man was that fun. We rode at the Oesterling farm. I sat behind Kyle for two hours and learned what it is like to ride fast lines. We were ripping some of the coolest flowing singletrack around. At damn near forty years old and many moons in the amateurish bikegaming biz, I was learning like a 12 year old tonight. When to brake, where to slide, when to flow, when to hammer. Damn good fun. It felt good to be riding right behind someone that good ( do not let it go to your head Kyle, remember job description #5). The hillclimb was only slightly "fun". 900 feet vertical in a little less than 1.5 miles. The decent was nice. 45.4 mph, 41 mph sprint on the flat and that little guy still came around after I thought I dropped him.
A ride or two like that each week and my MTB form will rip around pretty quicklike. Yes, I feel like I am far from form.
On another note, today was yet another bad GI day. Cramping and Ethiopianesque bloating throughout the day. We finished riding and I graced Kyle with a side profile of my 4 months pregnant belly. I gave it the Thimmy Kamala the Ugandan Giant pat down.
I can wait until the gastro says, " I really want to 'scope you." Yes please.
Good times. Oh the road keeps getting harder to go back.

Oh, this is rich

Piepoli's team-mate David Millar has had his share of doping drama. The 30 year-old spent time under suspension after admitting EPO use, and has since become an antidoping advocate. He gave his team-mates the benefit of the doubt, according to AFP. "They are not-negative. Leo has a certificate for asthma. Iban has a testosterone history. It is necessary to give them the benefit of the doubt," Millar declared. "One cannot never be sure with hundred percent certainty, it is always necessary to have doubts. In my personal opinion, they deserve my trust. If I am misled, it would be a pity. That would break our friendship."
You have got to be F'ing kidding me!?!? Millar, yes the same Millar, who so sadly admitted to EPO. Crybaby pussy! That fuck only admitted to EPO once he was caught with the needles in his possession. How many Cofidis riders did little Davey sell out? He even blamed his TWO times usage to the pressures to get results from management. Hmmm, you are hired to do a job. Your employer expects that you do that job. Welcome to life Davey. You damn well know that Davey was going to be hush hush and ride the EPO gravy train right to the World Champion bank. Now that cheesedick has the audacity to say it would be a pity if HE were mislead. WTF Davey!
I hope that scrawny little Piepoli takes Millar behind the woodshed and beats him senseless with the riding crop form Millar's moral high horse.
My advice to riders.
You are paid as cyclists, not speech writers. Keep your day job, and as the great motivational speaker Matt Foley once said, " keep yer damn yap shut!"

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Pleased to meet you...

won't you guess my name.
After five long, stinky, painful, gastrointestinal distress filled months I finally went to get a second opinion. Dr's Weaver & Miller had made the diagnosis of Celiac, and it seemed pretty close. Being that I do not want to give up bread, pasta or beer I opted to go with a little more in depth medical expertise.
I got the call from the doctor's office that I needed to call back to speak with the doctor. OK, no problem, something is amiss. At least now I can pin it down. Well I call and am told I am positive for Helicobactor Pylori bacteria. Well at least I have a name for the proverbial face. The shit of it is (no pun intended), that is akin to walking on a Ford dealership lot and the dealer pointing to the lot and saying there is your new Ford. WTF!?!? Which one? What does it do?
I do not even know if it is a live and thriving bacteria, or if it has been in my belly for years. Supposedly H Pylori causes/predicts ulcers. I have no symptoms to suggest that. To make things worse the past two days have been bad GI days for me. Pain, bloating and repeating like a howitzer. I can not believe I am looking forward to having fiber optic tubes inserted and threaded through the old upper and lower openings in the near future.
There are a few other values that are mucked a little high, that may or may not be additive and point to other things. That is for the specialists to figure out. It has been five full months already, another month surely can not make matters worse.
I will say this. I am sick and friggin' tired of being sick and tired.
On another truly depressing note.
It takes, on average, ten years for someone to get correctly diagnosed with Bipolar disorder from disease onset. One in five people with Bipolar disorder will commit suicide. These are the fun things I learn and get to speak about every day.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Persona, Persona non grata

So lately a friend and I have been having this ongoing discussion of image, personality, imposed personality and their interplay. The great, or not so great thing about the Internet is the anonymity that it perpetuates. There is next to no accountability, and anyone can become just about whatever they damn well please. This, all to this pleasure and dismay to anyone who sits in front a screen and perpetuates the debacle.
The intriguing part of daily life is that you only have to try just slightly harder to achieve the same end, and do it right in front of someones face.
So, the discussion had been mostly centered around the fact that very few people really know the real you/me/him/her deep down. What I wear to work perpetuates the myth that I am a true white collar professional. Yet what I wear while practicing for the bike game or working/hanging at the bike game shop, perpetuates the ruse that I am a gamer. The everyday Joe/Jane will have the gilded impression on either side of the dime. At once I am the "man" and an hour later I am a slacker that should get a "real" job. The truth in this great debate lies somewhere in between. Then comes the twist that my friend and I speak about. This is one where you purposely inhabit a personality to go along with what believe perceive, or what you want to convey at that particular time. Sometimes as a joke, sometimes a joke taken to far. If anyone has seen the "podium shoes" you will know what I mean.
So what really is my/your persona? It probably is something, but a handful of people really know, and a busload think they do.
These days I can guarantee you that my real persona is masked well under the podium shoes, Jos. A Banks suits, bike gaming kit, the tattoos, the house and this silly originallegend diatribe. The few that are "privileged", and or cursed, to really know my persona understand where I come from.
The part of this debate and dilemma is that I/you/we have all done something to inherit the persona non grata we at times try to escape, and we all will still do our damnedest to keep it alive.
Don't mind me. I am going to slip on my podium shoes & kit and practice my victory salutes in front of a full length mirror, while sipping a $15 bottle of Delirium Tremens that I poured into my Jeff Gordon #24 pint glass. All this while Hank Williams Jr and Kid Rock blare in the background.
Like I said the truth lies somewhere in between.
Be nice.