Monday, August 25, 2008

Rah Rah Sis Boom Bah

Yes, kids it is possible to go to an event and NOT race in it. I spent my morning that way yesterday, and it was super fun. There was a local Tri 10 miles from my house so I went to do some spectating and cheering. With a nice morning warm-up ride and a some race wheel prep taken care of, I switched into spectator mode.
I had long since forgotten what it is like to open water race, so watching the swim was really cool. Since the swim was a lap swim, I was able to do some cheering mid-way through. Off to the bike leg she went and off to the woods I went on the cross bike. After some intervals it was time to go out to the half-way point of the bike to check the race out. Holy friggin' sweet, 5th overall! Back to some more intervals a quick high speed crash with the race director's wife and her mom (long story). Thankfully we were both relatively unscathed. Out on the run and still 5th overall. Holy Dang! A fast run and 5th overall and 1st woman.
What an awesome race. What a cool day. I caught up with some old acquaintences and spoke with some really nice people I had just met. The Tri scene is very close to the MTB scene. Very friendly, very welcoming and supportive and extremely positive. Now that I have spectated, I must say the old tri bug has me thinking. Mostly pondering the possibility of drowning after not swimming competitively in sixteen years, yet thinking nonetheless. It would be fun to do a tri. A new challenge. A safe environment where no one knows who I am and no one cares if I swim like an anchored yacht. Who knows. It sure beats 160 right hand turns and a sprint.
Maybe an Exterra race could be in the future?
Maybe I will continue being spectator/support crew? it sure was fun.
Great race and thanks for letting me be part of it.
I wonder what my late '80's tri buddies are doing right now?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

And now for a little perspective

Most people know I love a good debate. I enjoy being the Devil's advocate. Take the contrary unpopular view and make people see that said view is not "evil". If you want the best example of this, in a theatrical sense, rent "Thank you for smoking." It is great. The premise is that as the Devil's advocate I do not need to show you that my view is correct, I just need to point out that your view is flawed.
That being said. It seems Big Oil is the latest whipping boy. Now first perspective is that gas prices are NOT a pure function of Big Oil. The gas price blow-up was more a function of shady traders hedging bets on oil futures and driving prices, to cover losses elsewhere. So most of the far left already have their Big Oil premise of greed and batching in gold bullion shot from the water.
More than that my view, as opposed to "yours", is this. Oil, and its byproduct gas is a bargain. The simple minded argument of mpg for vehicles is sheer pandering to hysteria. Has mpg gone down? Of course, that is a shame in a technological age. However, your argument there is against the auto manufacturers and not Big Oil. Get your argument straight and seperate the issues. They are mutually exclusive.
OK, back to point.
Gas is a bargain. The price per gallon is inexpensive. If you look at the price per gallon as it relates to economic stimulus, gas is the ultimate driver of economy. Gas allows goods and services to get to the consumer. Gas allows the consumer to utilize these goods and services.
Let us take examples of three particular goods that are highly consumed, can be delineated out to cost per gallon and have incredibly high margins with essentially ZERO R&D or economic stimulus. Soda, coffee, bottled water. Why is Congress not going after Starbucks or Coke/Pepsi. These entities have cost per gallons that far exceed gas. They are consumed just as much, yet no one is on a high horse about paying $4 for some effing double mocha cappa caramel half caf frappalatta. Yet, Starbucks exploits coffee pickers for pennies per hour wage and pennies on the pound for beans.
Enough of this. The post would be far too long to go into the whole argument. My point is this, especially to bike racers. STOP EFFING WHINING ABOUT GAS!!!!!! You just drove 1,2,3 hours to ride your bike in circles around an industrial park when you could have walked out your door to ride for free. Thus you would have stuck the dagger in the heart of Evil Big Oil and you would have saved the environment.
When you look at margins, R&D, economic stimulus, supply & demand, gas really is quite a bargin. Ultimately your argument is flawed because their was no objectivity. Like in the movie, there is more than one flavor, Vanilla. I want Chocolate.
Thank you for smoking and have a nice day.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

P S A of the day

EZ PASS, just get it.
Seriously thought my blood was boiling at the 95 toll stop due to not being able to get in the EZ pass lane.

Good day at the "office"

Good ride at Iron Hill to end the Enduro season
Hangin' out and chatting with friends and strangers
Nice outdoor candlelight dinner while watching Black Crowes Freak and Roll San Fran concert on the house
Nice fire burnin' in the pit for Rise of Taj
Dark Choco S'mores, yum dilly
Chubby Bunny marshmallow contest, damn, I lost
Half dozen neighborhhod teens stopping by outside the fence, in awe of the "TV on the house"
Dogfish Head 90 min IPA's
A good night's sleep

Friday, August 15, 2008

The end is nigh

or is it.
Iron Hill tomorrow for the last Enduro of the MASS season. After a good season I may come up a hair short on one of my major season goals. That is fine by me. I tried to win the Enduro series, yet knew that I was competing against a stronger endurance rider in my teammate
Licktenballsner. He has beaten me even up at every event. Hopefully tomorrow we can do another 1-2. Maybe I can even get the V this weekend.
After that it is 7 Springs. Team event vs the solo. Wiser minds and wiser times have prevailed on that choice. We look to be strong, so hopefully a team V will be in order. Even on the top step that V will be super bittersweet as there is definitely somewhere I would rather be, watching a race. That just leaves Bear Creek to warap it up for the MTB season. Crazy thing is there are three friggin' cross races between 7 Springs and Bear Creek. WTF!?!?!
Putting in the cross bike time the past week or so to get used to it. Feels good, thoughts of sugarplum fairies are dancin' even. Maybe that is because the training time has been more fun of late?
A little backyard cinema the other night was super fun. I can only imagine what the neighbors think. I believe the cinema is getting fired up on aturday as well. Hell, I may even be getting fired up on Saturday as well. Dark Chocolate smores, Dogfish Head 90 minute IPA and Van Wilder, The ride of Taj.
Yeah man, it is finally pretty damn good to be me.
On a bummer note, I will miss a going away party for a very good friend tomorrow. I owe so much to this guy that it is not even funny. It is one of those debts that you can never repay, yet hope some day to make a small dent. Dude, hooked me up with a cross team, a road team and prolly had a say for as well. More than that, on a long weekend to Cincy a few years back, he and the coolest 'burgh cyclist around came to my rescue more than they will ever know. In a lifetime a person can only hope to be so lucky to have friends like I have. To have the good fortune to have enjoyed this particular friendship has been a true blessing. Be well my friend. Enjoy.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

That was a fun ride...

w/ Robbie L.
I just erased a long pretty well thought out post, about the race, course and logistics. Better left unsaid. Rob & I were away at the 2 mile mark and kept on rolling. The superhuman specimen that he is, absolutely drove the fire roads while I drafted. Enough to earn the V in my book. Robbie rolled the line and I came through at 1/2 wheel for a 1-2 at God's Country.
Another disappointing thing was the lack of cell service that I had in the mountains and how my voice mail never registered until I was half way home and my phone was all but dead. Not so good.
Went to DK's cookout and croquet tonight. Good time, fun night with friends. Very happy we made it. Croquet was stellar. After many a ClusterF things spread out and Seve played like a man, in defeat that is.
Lots of highpoints today.

Friday, August 08, 2008

This is how we roll in God's Country

Yessiree BoB. God's Country. Coudersport, PA. Killing time before the killing time. GC Enduro is tomorrow so here I set at The Millstream Inn. I must say I am quite pleasantly surprised. I have a microwave, frig and recliner in my room. Tres nice. I was able to reheat my Masala Bistro Shrimp Biryhani tonight for a good meal. Yum dilly.
Shrimp Biryhani you ask? Yes, there is a story to that as well. I went on an easy afternoon ride by myself and then warmed-up with my extra favorite triathlete before her TT. She was rockin' the Zipp wheels so I knew she would be quick. It has been a while since I have been a spectator at an event. It was cool to talk with some friends while she rode. It was even cooler to see that great smile when she found out her time at the end. Holy fast! Really nice finish pic out on the innerweb. Needle in a haystack.
Oh yeah, Shrimp Biryhani. A great win deserves a good meal. Since someone has been craving Indian, it was off to Masala Bistro. Good Indian food on the West Shore, check it out.
So, now I am off to find a beer and some kind of long sleeve shirt to warm-up in tomorrow. Hopefully the god's will align and the legs will comply. If not, I still have a picnic with my best friends in the evening. I hope she is ready for the experience.
I heart the Olympics.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Yeah, baby, yeah

All seems pretty good in TOL land these days. Feeling pretty happy with the way some things are coming about. The tiredness is leaving, making way for even more fitness. Legs have been good the past three days. Even today, on little sleep, the efforts came easy.
I enjoyed one of the nicest days I have experienced, maybe ever, yesterday. Pleasant, peaceful, beautiful, everything was easy and felt spot on. Hopefully many more days like that to come.
So I have been looking at the cross schedule lately, and realized that maybe just maybe, cutting back may be in order. I already am out of two MAC events due to commitments that mean sooo much more to me than cross. Imagine that. Even though I support the inclusion of the Whitmore's events in LI, they are top-notch, I just do not see making a 12-16 hour round trip drive.
Who knows, maybe I will race them, maybe I will do some "soul riding". Maybe I can get a whole new mtb enjoyment this fall. Lots of things, lots of choices, all are good, some are better.
yeah, baby, yeah!
I wonder if there will be an Austin Powers Prequel?

Friday, August 01, 2008

Holy Tired

Yep, tired, lethargic and generally little desire to ride hard. That was yesterday. Pulled the plug when it just was not fun. Meh a little spin around the block will loosen the legs and head this morning.
The next few days are pretty full with riding, helping friends move, a party, and possibly a little road trip. I am sure I will be thoroughly knackered come Monday.
Went to the Junction last night. man, that joint scares me. New name same old atmosphere. Thankfully Gus, Seve, and the Adams family made it very fun.
Got some new, to me anyway, music in rotation. Metallica S & M and Girl Talk, Feed the Animals. Good stuff, each.
I think I will pick up a new projector today. The Colonel's loaner has seen better days. No color, cockeyed screen, runs hotter than a latin chick scorned, and I just want my own.
Three more really important bike games for the year. Yep, you heard right THREE more IMPORTANT bike games. Should add up to 15 racing hours if all goes well. After that, it is all about just having fun. Race cross when I feel like it. Enjoy easy riding when I feel like it. I keep paring the cross schedule back every time I look at the calendar.
Enjoy the weekend kids. Be nice, surprise someone you dig. Do something nice, out of the blue, because you can.