Next Full Moon

Sunday, May 3rd Full Flower Moon

31 January 2009

winter with a small w

went to pick up the youngest on the Big Dummy the other day. He prefers the "trailerbike", but it's been a while since I rode the Dummy, so.

One guy on a road bike caught me on the pave climb to take the trail to the other trail to get here:

and he asked me how I lik my ride, and was cool and friendly. We had a nice chat about cargo bikes and cross bikes, and I took him for granted.

Later on, another guy on a road bike caught me on the flats out Carmel Valley Road and he snickered "Good Luck!", and I remembered what a bunch of dicks there are on road bikes.

It is true, it really does ride better when loaded. The rear end feels more. More hookup, more feedback.

That is some good cargo.

We got a flat and hung around roadside patching the tube. 2 cars stopped and asked if we needed help. 1 mom lady was very concerned. 0 problems were had. All patched up (because we roll with a pump and patch kit, yo) and we rolled on and on.


Later on we got home to find a package from Swobo containing a cap. This is worth mentioning because I had received an email from Sr. S. Smith, a representative of that organization, exactly 2 days prior informing me that he had "somehow, some way" gotten wind that I was in possession of a defective winter cap, and asking me if I wanted a replacement free of charge. I replied that it was weird that he had that info, which was true info. And further, I had requested an RA# at minimum 4 years ago which I had received and then not acted upon for so long I just let the hat rest in my accessories drawer. A hat full of silent reproach.

So now, at least 4 years later, he wants me to have a replacement.

Heck yes!

New one on the left, old one on the right. The problem with the old one was that the brim flippy flopped down in your eyes. The new one does not do so.

So, if you wanna buy with confidence I recommend Swobo. They have good products and good people.


The timing of this whole Swobo plug is ironic, too. Because this weekend past was the Josshole's Training Camp I rode with some new-to-me folks. One of the people involved was very pointed in noticing my Swobo knickers (c.1999). When the sag vehicle met us and (Give Thanks!) there was beer in the cooler, I opted to drink a bottle. I opened it on my Time pedals; it's like they were made for just such a purpose. One (1) of the other guys wanted a beer, but couldn't figure how to open it. He saw that I had one open and asked how I'd gotten mine open. I told him, and the same noticer said, "Oh, he's wearing Swobo pants, of course he knows!" So there is that going for them, which may or may not be nice. It is more true than not, I guess.

Anyhow, here are some pitchers:

That's my full suspension(!) rig in the foreground. Forgot about that one, huh? Me, too. It is the 2nd time I've ridden it at all since last summer's Colorado Trip. I felt squirrely all day. It saved me from a beatin though.

It was some of the same bike geekery ("you got a nice bike and you just had to go and put those bars on it and make it...") as on Friday, but Mr. Coach B______ thinks I interpret it all wrong- that it's not amazement and wonder at the fact that I ride what I do, but at how crusty and degenerate I am while still (barely, barely) hanging on to the group. I'd say that's probably as true as anything else.

Barely. Hanging on. These are up the Grind towards Laguna Seca, and we'd already put in several fast loops on the old race course by the Scout Camp and such. Fast loops.

Remember that story about the sprinting dog and thinking I could probably outsprint a predator? Same thing. I had the vaguest of notions that I had speed and could place (if not show) if I wanted...not after chasing those racers around. I cheated on Friday's Fremont Climb (taking a motor pull), skipped their ~80miles of road on Saturday in favor of work, and cheated again on Sunday and still could just keep them in sight if someone at the back waited a little. Huh.

So here is where I spent my ill-gotten time bonus. I cut out Couch Canyon in favor of riding from Laguna Seca across the saddle to a safety break, lounging in the sun, eating a nice lunch, and lying around. You see the trail down there? That's the beginning of the climb up Hurl Hill...

seen here, nearing the top.

And summitting.

The welcome sight of the sag...

We all agreed to skip the planned Toro Park addition, which by then was A-OK with me. Once we got back (by way of the tortorous 3 Bitches and Ewok) to the East Garrison side somewhere around the 45 (that's it?! felt like a LOT longer to me) mile mark, I peeled off for the secret spot and some quiet beers in the shade.
Bikes. And bike riding.

30 January 2009

Team Joselyn's Training Camp Weekend?

Footie's Gospel Train:

I could ride that train to some kind of Glory. Even if it don't carry no jokers; no snuff takers or cigarette smokers...this train is bound for Glory. This train:

Friday was Fremont Peak. Meet in Salinas and ride out over San Juan Grade (which hurts me so much; it is really hard for me to give it if I can see all that laid out in front of me. I prefer to be tricked with twists and turns). You see the support car following some of the (all) people in front of me...

to the approach to Fremont itself.

87 degrees, sucka. HOT.
Other folks have Power Tap data and GPS and whatnot, so you should really search the web for that valuable info.
It was hot, and it was hard.

I was so glad to tuck back under the cool oaks on the rollers up top...

It was real "team-like", so there were no hijinx (except for me taking a pull from the team car to catch the middle group on the lower flanks- a move which upset one of the stragglers as I was motored by him- I slungshot off the car and passed those guys like they were going backwards, & I love that.) I say, "what the HELL is the point of a broom wagon if there is no beer in the cooler?" Most of the guys are mellow, but it is definitely that racy bullshit scene where people congratulate me (for riding at all?!?) like it's amazing I'd attempt to ride "seriously" without a sub-17lb complete bike, and I find that so tiresome. They are not even aware they're condescending, so I just say "Thanks." and leave it, but. If I'm feeling expansive, I'll explain that it is not the bike holding me back. Usually they just look at me blankly.

whatevah! Fremont is a good hard climb, like I lik. had the 28s on the road/cross Black Cat, and it felt as zippy as anything.

Coach B______, who gets it from way back. All around hard man, and darned nice fellow. I followed him and Mark F______ on the descent- bigringing the whole thing and spun out. That shi_ is fun! The lower curves are swooped just right for going hella fast. The top section, a little scary with the hairpins. Particularly that one- the one where you imagine how bad it could be if a car came around at just the wrong moment? Well, today was almost that moment for me, as I came in way too hot and overshot the turn to the tune of crossing the oncoming lane and into the gravel while a red Suzuki came barreling up at us. Whew, Give Thanks.

I was supposedly sponsoring the team with massage, but there appear to be some issues- not least that my logo didn't make it on the kit. I will be getting to the bottom of this. I'll be working on some riders tomorrow night after Day 2 of the camp, and attempting to join them on the dirt on Sunday. We shall see.

Now, I am tired.

and be your sexy boyfriend, yeah!YEAH!

Hey! all you East Coast Dudes....I heard when you ____, you're reeeeeal rude.

How you like this for winter transport? That's right. Form ice velocipede!
(photo from BibliOdyssey)


So none of us out here dressing left need to hear your little iceriding stories until they involve one of these.

29 January 2009

Coppi v. Bartali?

This is not inconsequential.

There it is.

Coppista? You will say that "it is clearly Coppi handing off his bottle". You will say"Look at the form of the man, he is not looking back to grab a bidon; he is looking forward to the race." You will admire the intensity of his gaze . You will point out the downward glance and evident fatigue of Bartali. You will deny the possibility of a Bartali handup, saying "But his cages are full! He only has the one barmount, and the one downtube. Where would he have gotten that 3rd bottle if not for the munificence of Il Campionissimo in giving a drink to his greatest rival?!" Perhaps you will bare your teeth and growl.

Bartalista? You might sigh, and ask "why is it that Copppi holds his other bottle in his hand if not for the fact that he is engaged in replacing both, and aren't they both empty? Isn't Coppi receiving a full bottle from "Pious Gino", who in fact is sufferring humbly while Coppi grimaces through his dehydration?" You could question "whether anything at all can truly be told by the location of bottles in this picture. It may be that more is to be gained from the expressions; in which case isn't it the aging master calmly sacrificing his water for his greatest rival?!" Maybe your eyes will slowly close as brows go up and palms rise.

Here is the answer: It just doesn't matter. It just doesn't matter if the challenger is paying homage to the champion, or if the aging master is denying himself for the sake of his ascendant protege.

It's all love.

28 January 2009

we've gone on holiday by mistake

No work? Ride.

I neglected to bring the camera on yesterday's ramble. ("Whateva, I don't need no camera all the time.") That was a mistake. Because of course, following the rains everbody is out on the bright sunny day. stRanger Danger, which caused a sudden change in route that ended up being fun. 2 Golden Eagles, one phone pole after another just sitting there, 18 or so feet above me, unconcerned.

Then that one bobcat who hangs out on top of the hill above 50/Laguna Seca side. Then a buzzard.

Passing through the plaza downtown Monterey...4 people total. 4. Slow times.

Then I found an easter egg under a strategically placed trash can lid, somewheres in the woods.

Lastly, I picked this up free off the side of the road:

if any of y'all are innerested in a free trailer, lemme know. Otherwise I will drill holes in the bottom and fill it with iced beer to drag around.

It's not in good enough shape that I'd haul a kid in it, but for stuff, it'll work fine. The hitch is a pain in the ash, but what do you want for nothin?

25 January 2009

Foghat says it best:

But first: turn it up, maaaaaaan!

It cannot be coincidence that Mr. G____ Stoner played this (loud as hell) during my cross experience today.

J lounging in the staging area...

Last minute advice from the parents...check out the kid in the middle getting in character. Mr. Farright won.

Getting the Game Face on. All the kids got Brazilian flags (WTF?) and a water bottle full of candy (yes!!) upon registering. These Peak Season folks have it dialed. Very well put together event. Walkietalkies, computers, megaphones, and a booming system. And this guy:

, who was apparently running the timekeeping.

Nice crowd, friendly people. Cyclocross seems to be like that.

D rode strong. At the front right out of the start, he held his place for the 1st lap...then the 2nd...where he let the lead go as he was passed on a longish, deceptively flat uphill section in the last 1/4 lap. I saw him sag and let it happen. No amount of vocal pushing helped at that point (and I really do see he could have rejoined and won), as he was focusing on wanting water and feeling tired.

He got whiny. We've all been there, but it is hard to swallow from a parent perspective. No damn whining! (He doesn't read this blog.)

We encouraged him and told him (truthfully) that he put in a really solid effort for his 3rd place finish. It was fun riding with the kids and cheerleading. They have refreshing attitudes.

J doing his dance on the podium,

and on the way up
and on the way down.

Look at me go!

Oh! That guy is gettin' away...

This is how we do it.

Zipping up for the DFL...mens A singlespeed.

The fixed Crosscheck was my weapon of choice on this day. Aptos High as the venue; which Joe the Enigma may remember as the site where there was ankle deep standing water at the start, and 4" deep streams last time. I wore through front and rear brake pads at that race. Today's cold and cloudy yet dry gear option of fixed 42x18 was mmmmm, steep. I'd love to blame my performance on that, but it rests solely on my habits. I had a nice crash on the top side:

The heckling at the top of the run up ("It's a RUN up, not a walk up!") was outstanding. I was abused in several different ways each time I showed up, and was so out of breath I could only smile and wheeze in response. Excellent. Then there were Modelo handups for a couple laps. Eggsellent.

Joe the Enigma may remember that run up as one in which we had to tolerate wheels to the head from the folks above/in front of us while holding them up with a hand to the bum just to keep them off us. Excellent.

Looking at these words, it is hard to grasp why we would do this. But it sure is fun.

If I spike you, you'll know you've been spoken to.

1953 Giro d'Italia

Il Campionissimo. Look at that shi_. Look at that form, those angles. Look at the road surface! Check the tires width. Riding for real. He is using that bike. Using it as a platform, climbing all over it to keep that forward movement.

We can talk about that kind of riding all day. But it cannot be taught and learned except that we go to that kind of place, get uncomfortable, lose fluids, hurt and persevere.

Seen here with his mentor, the blind "magician of the muscles" Biaggo Cavanna. You know that guy stripped to his smudged and torn undershirt to do the work. Drank whiskey and dropped ash all over the World's Greatest. That's the kind of massage that really allows for recovery. If I had pictures to prove it, I'd post them right here.

Style for miles. Style for the miles.

Folks want to talk about the rivalry between these 2 great men. There is a "divide" between them. Who gave what bottle to whom, and what did it mean?

People talk. Let them talk. Coppi. Bartali.

This is the photo.

What is happening there? I personally know the answer. What do you think?

23 January 2009

rain. and rumors of rain.

Guess I got my wish.

It'll be good for the cross on Sunday...

21 January 2009

Junior Barnes....oh, Junior Barnes....


I turned some pedals in anger today in the 42x18. Flipped the wheel last week after a flat, from fixed to free-yet the ratio remains the same. Just getting a feel for things, you know. I knew in my mind that the gear is crazy to even think of taking on the long course for the upcoming 10th Annual County Line Jamboree Long Route (among other things?), but now I know in my heart and legs.

As I said before, 39x27 hurt. I've gotta get a different setup. I've gotta get a gear so round... and so perfect... it's got a little name inscribed on it...

In other news, I swapped the unsatisfactory Midge bars for the dreamy Nitto Noodle 48(!)cm bars. Aaaaaaaaaaah, what a relief. Fit's so good, I had to holler for help.

You are keeping close track of my setup/likes/dislikes for future reference, aren't you?

20 January 2009

Flyer Chump!!

Wondering about the 2009 County Line Jamboree?

All right.

19 January 2009

flyness be the reason that my shi_ cracks

whether in Dada jeans or crepe silk slacks..perhaps a dirrrrrrty apron.

Today was Bike Repair Day here at the House of Dick.

First up was finalizing L's Crosscheck handlebar swap. Yes, the Moustache is back. Classic Bianchi Celeste tape. "There are several contradictory myths concerning the origin of this colour - it is the colour of the Milan sky, it was the colour of the eyes of the former Queen of Italy, for whom Edoardo Bianchi once made a bicycle, it was the serendipitous mixture of surplus military paint."- wikipedia. Whichever, it is a great "colour" with a rich history.

Here's hoping the ride goes well for her ash. Friend C____ (birfday gal) was speculating that her teammates might push the pace and frustrate L by dropping her to the tune of a couple hours. WTF?!? I said (and do say still) "it's a Birthday Ride- not a race. Those 'teammates' are lame if that's how they behave. You have your own Good Time, and if you feel like stopping for a snack and some wine, go right the hell ahead. It's a Celebration." You'll notice I added the light, though, in case...

All fired up, it was N's townie next. The school bike gets some love:

Lowered generator light mount for better basket access, better lighting, and less chance of middle school random vandalism.

That's right, bicthes. True dirtbags don't need no fancy Gino/Paul's mount (which is admittedly very nice). Nor the Velo Orange mount (which I do covet). And, plus, this reeks of class and sophistication. Possibly just of cheap wine.

I swapped some parts around on some other bikes, and splashed a bunch of TriFlow over everthing. Feels good to have working bikes working good.

18 January 2009

"listen to this"

waving both hands wildly, like a...a...a big big monkey man-

Dwight Yoakum y Flaco Jiminez (especial por Gunnar)

Blow your mind with Flaco y Freddy Fender y Willie Nelson. Tejano como nos gustamos!

Flaco y Ry Cooder.

Jimmy Bryant and Speedy West backing Tennessee Ernie Ford

and, in spite of Dave Wakeling's mascara in this one...

The (English) Beat with "I Confess"...which I must confess was a large part of my high school experience.

17 January 2009

Shop Ride

Joselyn's Bicycles (the best damn shop on the peninsula!) closed up with the "Gone Riding" sign...

So. That is how some sections of Fort Ord look. That is how some guys ride their bikes.

It has been unseasonably warm and dry. I hope Sr. Hamachi is wrong, but he may be right...this dry warmth spells D-R-O-U-G-H-T. I guess I hope it gets cold and rains soon. And for about a month? Ugh.

oh, hey look, some folks don't wear helmets and then ask if I've taken my "cool bike" off any sweet jumps...