Next Full Moon

Sunday, May 3rd Full Flower Moon

31 July 2010

I really wanna curl your hair

I don't know about you, but I been riding. Feeling good. Yesterday I put the road tires (37mm Panaracer Paselas with the gumwall) on the cross bike and rode that. I rode up to that one spot but was denied access, so I took some screamingly fast swoopy descents and then climbed up another way.

Man, I forgot how much railing one can do. Aside from finally (maybe) allaying my flat curse- the one under which I have labored silently these past several months (seriously, like every other ride at least one flat, sometimes multiples)- the roundy roundness just offers so much lean. I love the roads again!

Especially when they lead to a trail. Lots of ups and downs, because I especially love that.

image courtesy of Golden Age Comic Book Stories

Wood fenders?

I know, I also dislike the flat ones which do little to avoid a gritty spray out the sides. MK Fenders has sweeet formed wood fenders that look like they work...

If any of y'all feel the need for a detailed review, you are welcome to purchase some (unadorned, thanks- I like neutral) and have them sent to me for a full inspection. That way you know if you really want them.

Hey! who lives in Portland and has some size 10 Dromarti cycling shoes they aren't wearing? Send them too.

30 July 2010

here's something relevant

Uma Kleppinger has some good things going on...

I polish my rivets by dint of hard pedaling.

The seat of my pants is shining like aluminum foil.

28 July 2010

ain't no puzzle y'all

...we, uh, groovin' on the spirituality.

D, 10, is spending much of his summertime riding the ocean with the Monterey Junior Guards. It's a fantastic program. They're teaching him to surf, which is rad. It's a great sport, with potential for a lifetime of joy and I sure am not the one to teach him.

It's also time for someone to teach the boy to ride the bike with fly style, and for that, I'm the one. Today he rode waves off a Asilomar, and I rode dirt off a that one area. So when we completed our separate pursuits, he cleaned the sand residue off a himself and I cleaned the food residue off a the dishes and we went for a ride:

At first, we couldn't agree on where to ride. Then we decided to ride our bikes to a good spot in the woods where we could read our books and make some snacks.

Today was about the finding of the funnest route to wherever it may be that you're going. To my mind, that requires some dirt.

It's been a while since we hit the trash can lid.

The trusty Esbit. Wood fire to boil some tofu dogs...

Then we continued on up the hill to that one overlook to wait for the rest of the family to join us for some more snacks, some binocular aided whale watching, and ultimately the sunset.

Hot dance move action.

False mustache.

We still party...

Cuz life is much too short for you to not be fly.

25 July 2010

2010 TdF? whatever.

Contador wins 3? I'm like "whatever".



That is what I'm talking about. 557k on the heels of the Dauphine.

Look at those maniacs.

24 July 2010

you have to want it


This is awesome, still.

this blog is an airtight alibi

As your lawyer, I advise you to take a hit from the brown paper bag and get on your bike.

It occurs to me, in telling tales of camping with kids, that some things need clarification. To wit: the motivation or lack thereof in children making hard efforts. I think about this because my brother, whom y'all do not know (and who does not follow this blog), considers himself a "part-time Dad" on account of his daughter (who also does not follow this blog) lives with her mother, apart from him; to the tune of another state apart. I play the role of Uncle in this scenario. And let's face it- I play it well, if a little creepily. My brother is, understandably, reluctant to play the bad cop when his time with her in person is so limited. This gives him some kind of grief in that she needs a disciplinarian around on occasion.
Don't we all?

This is not complaining:
In the course of riding out to the last camping trip, my niece lagged like you'd expect of a kid who is coming off the couch for a hot and somewhat hilly 3mile tour. Then she lagged like you'd expect from a kid who knows they can play the role of broke-down asthmatic and get away with it. I waited several times with J (5 1/2 and on a 12" wheel) along the route. then I pushed on to the trail head and waited there. And waited. And waited.
Finally, after the arrival of one kid (one had gone on to camp ahead of all of us) I left the loaded bike and walked back down the road to see if help was in order. Around the 2nd corner, maybe 1/8th of a mile back, there they were- sitting in the hot sunny roadbed. Now being the Uncle, I told my niece to get up and get moving, out of the sun and towards the trailhead blah blah blah. My brother said they'd just stopped to rest right then, which-if accurate- is neither here nor there and it definitely is not moving towards shade or camp. So, under duress, we moved the 1/8th of a mile to the trail head. I there remounted the bike and insisted we continue immediately down (down, mind) to camp. Which we did, even though J led them too far down the trail and they had to turn back and walk their bikes up from the bridge...

In my alternate, yet simultaneous, role as full time Papa I have the luxury of playing the bad cop all day long- secure in the knowledge that they have enough exposure to me as a loving and supportive parent as well. If nothing else, that is a true blessing in this time. So I recognize that. As a loving and supportive parent (who is still me, for what that's worth) I tell y'all here and now that I have literally kicked my son in the ass repeatedly to get him up and moving on that very hot and hilly road; albeit much further up and in much hotter heat. There was a trip we took, me and the boys, that was a crusher...

A crusher.

Occasioning the literal ass kicking, D had lain down in the road several times and finally simply refused to get up. What do you do at that point? I suppose you could park your bike to shelter him and rig a little tarp so he could get comfortable in the cool shade while you made some lemonade and reasoned with him about the logistics of getting to a suitable rest stop....but that did not occur to me at the time of his final throw down. I told him to get up a couple more times and then I gave him the boot until he got up and moved on. We eventually got to camp and water and we rested there.

I tell y'all this not to reveal what an ice-hearted jackass I can be (though there is that), but to illustrate the occasional necessity of the bad cop in adventures (at all. period. but, here I add:) with children. We could have given up the trip at that point and ridden downhill to the river, swam and then gone home (we didn't know about the magic river side camp at that time), but what would that teach the boy? If he's gonna learn the lesson of suffering through, there is but one way. That's a damned important lesson to my mind.

Suffer through.

So parents: be kind, but also carry a big stick.
And brother: you are a better Father than I, and that's the troof.

23 July 2010

I always know where you are

You might think it's crazy.

My brother and niece visited. We took them on a little bike camping trip...

T_____, the niece, flat out hated the ride out. It's (only) 3 miles to the shady trail to camp, but they are a hot, up and down 3 miles. Apparently, I forget that this little camping trip is more than most kids are prepared to get up off the couch and enjoy. It is hard work.

I forget that because I enjoy the hateful parts of a ride.'s a gift we share, you and I.

Turtle spotting. J saw 2.

I took my phone for a swim and it didn't work out well. If you've been trying to reach me with no success, that's why. Get at me via some computer based text.

That shot there? That is T_____ forgetting entirely the work it took to get to that point. Get it while you can.

Masks and snorkels continue to please.

Breakfast with the propane stove. No fires right now...

2 days worth of living by the water's edge. Floating, swanging, jumping, swimming, lounging, etc.

Loaded with camping gear for 7, the Big Dummy was...more awkwardly laden than ever before. Not at it's heaviest, but certainly at it's top-heaviest. Weird sensations of flex...

Everything (all of it) made it on board, but it required a little more thinkering than usual. Give thanks for long straps! The xtracycle platform (represented here by Surly's Big Dummy) continues to haul much ass on kickass adventures.

That is: bike left/ green drybag with one 2man tent, one 3man tent, and one 4man tent; bike right/ kitchen bag with 2burner propane stove, two propane bottles, fry pan, pot, coffee press, plates/bowls/cups/silverware, spatula(!), dishwashing tub,etc; on top/3 folding chairs, 1 folding stool (with the cooler bag underneath); on topper/ gray dry bag filled with sleeping bags for 7, and pads for 5 (some folks carried they own pads)...what you don't see up front is the panniers containing the (not much) left over food and various deflated float toys.

Help getting up the steep singletrack from campo to Indians Road was required.

I should mention: J rode the big boy 20" wheeled bike with hand brakes and gears! I set the gears to "easy" for him, but he worked the brakes all by his lonesome. And yes, that is a single speed cruiser with a loaded basket...D is a stud, and he has no idea. Perfect.

We took a little time out to watch Black Dynamite, which I can wholeheartedly recommend to those who enjoy films in that genre. It was clear the filmmakers really loved what they were doing. They even left the boom mike in several scenes so you'd know they know you know.

I'ma have to change the name of this blog to "Look at us at Arroyo Seco!" if I don't get some new content...

July in Monterey...

It was sure swell hanging out with those 2.

22 July 2010

yes you say you do

I love riding a cross bike!

Man, it is the best. In a world filled with compromises, a cross bike's strengths suit me to a T- wherein the T stands for tepid bowl of porridge. That's how "just right" a cross bike is. You can ride the road to the trails and then back again, having a kickass time all the time.

That's really what it's all about. Isn't it?

I rode the roads to the trials to this. This fallen oak has stopped us for the last time.

That is how it looks now. Every time I ride those trails I find myself wishing I'd brought the clippers and/or a saw. This ride, I did.

The Gerber folding hand saw gave up the ghost on this one, with a broken locking mechanism and a split handle?!? I'm going to take it back to REI and demand (demand) a store credit, as I do not want a replacement. Any saw that can't handle a middling job like that is no saw of mine.

Then it was on to the South Boundary Rd and up into Laguna Seca for to take 50 down and up to the overlook. Sandy. Loose. Fun.

A beer from the caprock and a sandwich from the saddle bag. After that, and Blair Witch, I tried to keep angling Southward to find some good connectors. Ever since the devastation of the stairs, the DoD sections are ruined. I hunted and pecked and backtracked the way you can when it's you alone, and found the beginnings of some decent routes. Sections of greatness.

Riding home through Cside! I laughed at this. Makes me glad I don't live across the slanting street from this guy.