Wednesday, August 30, 2006

well it sure has been crazy....

I have been busy. started a new job just a part time one waiting tables again. Man I really like it much better behind the bar, then out on the battle lines.

The monster crosser is coming together, finally. She should be ride worthy next week I am hoping. I will have pics sooner than later, like the one of my new tattoo, i know I promised these awhile ago, but better late than never. that sure has been the motto of my year. better late than never. It seems that i will never race again, life just seems to take over sometimes and take a direction of its own. Not to say that I have not been on the bike, just not that far from home. I think that i will be doing some cross racing, ala fixed, once that thing is up and running and I have some miles under my belt. fixed off road, I am excited. If not a bit intimidated. My friend Matt came to town we got a ride in at tiger mountain, good times. I still need to get out to Kachess ridge, maybe sunday. anyone out there in.

My upcoming weekends are loaded full of things. My brother comes out and i get to take him to Vancouver, maybe I will get a ride in. The weekend after that it is off to tahoe for a wedding. I plan on getting one good ride in at least while I am back there.

congrats are in order for my friend Gregg, he ripped it up at this years E100. congrats stubbie coming in in 11 hrs and 50 some odd mins.

Rich Dillen, my hero, has legs and the mental capacity to suffer and suffer and not back down. Trans Rockies, e100 and now the Shenendoah 100. Rich you are an inspiration to us all. Keep it up.

Lately I have just been getting my commute miles in about 20 to 30 a day, 30 being at the high end of what i have been doing lately. soon i will be adding longer rides in on the weekends I hope, i want to be fit again. Next year is looking like I will focus on 3 to 5 races and that is it, maybe a few shorter distance ones, but mostly the longer ones, especially once the season gets going, I would like to do a couple of rides with the Randoneers, but we shall see what next year has in store for me.

Enough rambling, it is time to get going, pics of the monster crosser coming soon. later and as always keep pedaling

ON second thought last night was a meeting put on with the city about the planned bike improvement, they are actively tring to get more people to ride bikes for not just commuting but for trips to the store and such,errands ya know. So they held a meeting to get imput from cyclists about what they wanted to see. Turns out Seattle is quite the bike city, although we still have a long way to go but in perspective we are doing quite will. I will have a link up for those here in seattle to go and fill out a survey if they so desire. I urge you to do it. Bikes start a revolution one pedal stroke at a time. do it.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

this weekends blowup...

So I thought that getting another job would help us out, well it has only made things more stressful, in the sense that adding more hours to the work week always seems to do that. That and it is just a huge ball of wax, and at another brewery so I feel that I am spliting loyaties. I am thinking that I may just have to stay at the Big time, I have a special place in my heart for it and it is so familiar. The thought of working tons again doesn't really excit me..................................

I was just interupted by a phone call from the navigation blunder that is Keith, he's down the coast surfing and flying kites. Hope he got the pink one. Got some good advice that came via his grandfather "the best way to spend money is not to make it" time is valuable, and there is more than just making money for the sake of being involved for the idea. Not to say the current job is without its issues, but the are known and familiar. So I think I have the answer to my quire.

So this weekend, the plan was set to complete the triple crown, did it happen, no is the answer. Many issues conspired to make it and ugly affair. I just had no power in my legs, I thought that would go away. I started my navigating towards Crystal Mountain and the Cyrstal mountain loop. Horses have done a good job of completely messing up the trails. That and the 60 days of sun with no more than 3/100 of a inch of rain. To say the least the trail condtions were dry, and loamy. So we had the dust and I have never walked my bike so much in one ride, steep, dusty, loose trails will do that to you. Did I mention how hot it was, so I fell apart is basically what happened, later in to the ride of course. The view from the top of Crystal of mount Rainier was like no other, the descent was awsome, long, not so technical, but tight single track. I finish the first loop and feel a bit better, the sun was getting to me but I thought now I know what is ahead it will get better. See Danielle and get out on the next loop up Corral Pass Road, feeling alright, then I am forced to walk and the heat is draining me. More pedaling more walking. "do you want a ride" NO. Wow I must really look bad, I certainly feel bad. Ahhhh the top of the climb, lets keep pushing I need to be done. My vision is now doing funky things. Clif shots are doing nothing, solid food wont go down. Good times. Then the cramps kick in, my calf, my hamstring, my quad, oh whats that my groin and my forearm. Now the descent down ranger, fun, but my arms hurt so much that I am having trouble holding the handlebar. more good times. Finally I am done with the descent, did I just write that, i did. Cruse back to the car and crash out, I am cooked. I have felt bad before but never so soon in to a ride. total stats were 37 miles with 7900 feet of climbing. I felt bad. I made some mistakes, but I overestimated my fitness and my recover from whatever got me last year, I need to take it slower. EVery new experience is a chance to learn right. There you have it, my crazy life. thanks for reading and keep pedaling.

Friday, August 18, 2006

and sometimes....

I post twice in one day. This is a short one thou. Check this out fixed impressions, and after listen to this. My friend the Gonterian, who when I get back to VT I plan on hooking up with and riding is doing some cool stuff. I have never met the man himself in person, we have a mutual friend the Vulture, I look forward to meeting him, when we are geographically in the same spot at one time. No pics of the tattoo yet, cant find the cord to connect the camera to the computer. This is what happens when you have one camera that two people share. Soon I promise. After watching the Gonterian video i really need to get my monster cross bike up and running. Should have gone with the gut feeling I had about the person getting me the parts. Well I am thru waiting and planning on getting the final parts as soon as possible. I really want to ride that thing off road, sooner than later. So check the video out, I think it rocked. I am already for more. keep pedaling.

Check out some more fixie footage, this is of the street variety, go to cadence clothing and check the video section out. I like it. Black and white. I cant wait to see Mashsf.

And coming in a bit a movie about 24 hr racing done by the Off Road to Athens guys and Gripped films. I get the link here in a bit.

why is it so hard to post regularly

It's funny, I never seem to post as much as I would like. It seems to be a blogger symptom. Life happens and regular posting is a thing of the past. There always seems to be so much going on. So many variables and situations. To make an analogy, its like juggling, when you only have a couple balls in the air not so hard, but when you have a couple balls, some chainsaws, and a knife or two up in the air it gets a little tougher. Then there are those tasks that take time and energy and at the end of it all the only thing you have to show is a better outlook on life, that is if you are lucky. It seems to me that we all live in our own interpertations of the world and we take them out on each other. It really is and individual experience of the world in which we live. Trying not to take it all personally is really a challange at times. So there you have it, hope it make sense. Now to what has been going on.

Last saturday was the Vibrator out on Vashon Island. I had no idea what to expect or what it was going to be. Originally it was supposed to be the 3 of us. Me, Pete and Keith. You all remember Keith, the directional challanged one, well last weekend he was gimpy. His ankle which he messed up while walking in a parking lot, sober as the day he was born, still is bothering him. Now that a story worth telling to those around you. Reminds me of a friend who had to tell us all he broke a rib while in the shower, he slipped, that was the long and the short of that one. So it was Pete and I, we rushed to make the ferry, and litterally made it by being the last ones on, we bought our tickets at 12:50 for the 12:50 ferry, good on us. Got to Vashon hung out with the group, started the informal time trial, but missed a turn so we just cranked it out and went to the campground. The Vibrator is an off road time trial of sorts, informal in nature. I was supposed to be back to go to a pot luck, had the race gone off on schedule it would have been no problem, but it started a little late. Pete and I pre rode the course, which was rolling and super fun. We each had a few PBR's before the race, and then were off in 2 min intervals, then one min and finally 30 second intervals. I rode well, on the Vulture, she had wings that day. I think I had the fastest time, and Pete had an excellent ride, finishing on a flat. we left before the results were finalized. Made the ferry, got home and then went to eat by myself. sure was glad I rushed home.

Wednesday, Brady was in town for the Tattoo convention, so I got some new ink. Hope to have a pic up soon.

This weekend I am going to hopefully go out and do a big ride off 410. Hopefully the Cascade Triple Crown. If it all works I will have a gps unit and google earth of it up next week. thats me. September is filling up with too many events. A friends Wedding, my brother is coming out and I am taking him to school in Vancouver, Danielle's sister is going to school in Vancouver as well so I think that we are taking her up to school too. So there you have it. Life happening. Keep pedaling.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

One of the best weekends ever

That's right, you read it hear first......
I work nights, so when an event like the Dead Baby Downhill comes around I take the night off to enjoy the festivities. I had heard about this race before even moving here. The Downhill race itself is very short, I however chose to participate in the alleycat portion skipping the downhill for a longer event. I will tell you up front this is an event not to be missed, it was other worldly, dare I venture to say futuristic, it had a very Mad Max feeling. I think you get the picture. I forgot my camera, but I have pictures taken with a friends camera, at the moment I am having trouble locating them. I have located them, they appear to be in a zip file and I am having trouble uploading them, so you may have to wait for photographic evidence until later, but I will attempt to tell the story of the entire evening now.......
It all started with a few phone calls, and then it was off to meet my directionally challenged friend Keith at the Big Time Brewery, my place of employment, for a beer. I did mention that he is directionally challenged thus we figured it would be safe if we met at an easy to find location. Let me tell you Keith has no problem finding a bar, and after all it is the exact place that we met each other, so it was only fitting. But I digress. Beer almost gone, growler filled for the next stop, hanging out with Dustin at Cadence Clothing, and my boss steps in and I am forced to talk shop for the next 20 mins. That over we are off, first stop a bank downtown, the bank that I belong to is good however they aren't the largest bank, and have a limited number of locations. Dodging traffic with Keith in tow, we make it to the bank. Mission accomplished. I was impressed I took some awful lines through traffic and Keith, again being directional challenged was forced to follow, he didn't feel like getting lost in his own backyard. I am having a little too much fun with this right now, Keith thanks ahead of time for being a good sport about it. I hope that you are laughing as you read this.
Back to the day. Cadence for a beer with Dustin, by the way he is producing some great threads, order them up. Off we go to an address on a paper, somewhere is south Seattle. Stop for a bite to eat, not the best idea, the vietnmese food would be a hindrance later on. Note to self, spicy food on top of beer before a race is not the best combo for success. We find the Club house, do some investigating, pay our 20 dollars for water bottle, which doubled as the only way to get beer later, food tokens and shirt. What a bargain. Find the manifest, plot out course, I am getting better at navigation, but still don't know the city all that well. Wait a bit, then the 7 pm sharp start is more like 7:15, I was impressed. We are off. Next alleycat I am running on a geared bike, I think, fixie and I am off the back a bit. We race towards town, and our first stop. Planned Parenthood to get a condom. It is near danielles parents house so I know kinda where it is. I am in good position. I leave, make a navigational error, but get back on course towards the back of the pack. Get to the next stop, drop some beer money in the hat. I know where the next stop is, get there in good time. I am off, thinking do I stay in the alleys or get back on a more traveled path. I opt for the more traveled path, wrong answer, run through a couple lights and here a siren, look over my shoulder, thinking do I make an escape, no I just stay put. He write me a ticket for running a stop light, 81 dollars. It could have been worse, that was for one, not three. Well I figure my race is over, but I will continue on to the last checkpoint, which is hard to find, then another navigational error and I am on track. 5 mile time trial to the party. I make it,not dfl, but down the ranks. So much of these races are navigation, that and not getting pulled over. Good times. So now we are at the party. Pbr flowing. There are some bike powered rides, swings, slot machines, a sationary bike with a leather strap on the wheel that was rather painful. Few drinks, live music, clowns, funny bikes, etc. What a scene. So I tried to ride a swivel bike, started to get it just as I do, slam I am on the ground being tackled by a clown, go times. Tall bike jousting the rumor circulates that it is happening in the alley. We get out there, and the foot down game is about to start, I think this could be fun, until I get in to the ring and everyone else is on a kids bike, I am a target, I go down, I picked up a nice raspberry on my left elbow, think cheese grater. It is healing, but slowly. It is getting late, I joke about riding home with my eyes closed as thing happen in threes and I got a ticket, got tackled by a clown and ripped my elbow open. Keith hurt his ankle, before being drunk, so I limped him home, and that was that. One for the record books.
Saturday was pretty uneventful, hung out with Danielles family.
Sunday, Keith and I had planned to ride, but he had to bail understandably, Pete our other friend, who has a new girlfriend, hadn't returned my phone calls so I thought it was going to be uneventful as well. Well before I got up Pete had called a couple times and wanted to ride. I wanted to ride Noble Knob a trail that I had heard great things about, the drive was an hour and 45 mins, we decided we wanted to do it. It is absolutely amazing and I will leave it at that. Lots of climbing and amazing views. I don't want to say much more because it was that special, I want it for me.

The trip to Tahoe is shaping up to be a great one. This weekend I think I am going out to the Vibrator on an local island. Life is good. Last week was big miles, this week a little relax is in order. Slow and steady is the way back to health. Thanks for reading and as always keep pedaling

Friday, August 04, 2006

Dead Baby Downhill

Today is the day. The Dead Babies are a local bike club and they put on a totally illegal rece today and an after party that I am told is not to miss, lots of beer, tall bike jousting, and an all girl bicycle cheer group from Portland called the Sprockettes. ala the Rockettes. I have heard that there will be bicycle powered amusment rides, this should be one hell of a night. I took the night off just for the occasion, after all we only do live once and this is going to be a blast, who needs work anyways, I always say that it sure is over rated this work stuff that we have to do as part of life. So my day is going to be interesting. Keith and I are riding over, he is unsure if he will race, what could be better than a downhill race through the streets with lots and lots of other people on a fixie. Insane, I think not. Sure I am rambling right now, but what else is one to do when they have all the words so eloquently situated,but when they are put to paper they dont sound like they did in my head, what is that all about. After all I am a genius in my own mind, just ask me. I hope you are laughing now, cause I am. But I digress....
So this movie looks interesting. I meet some of the Black Label guys in Reno a few years back, they really know how to put on a party. Make sure to check out the trailer. It is worth watching. With all these films about the underground coming out Klunkerz, mashsf , there are more, but they are escaping my overcrowded mind right now. I feel the need to make one about singlespeeding, I would love to make a film about the lives and the backgournd on singlespeeds, history, the worlds, endurance racing. It would be fun. Now I have no background in film, nor do I have funds right now, but I just might get a wild hair, and try to start compiling footage next year. I sure an rambling right now. Throw your ideas out.
Nick Martins site has a interview with Chris E of National and World Solo fame.
I am going for a good mountain bike ride this weekend, again in the 410 area, I would love to put a race on in this area and am exploring all the possible options, slowly, but I am getting to know the area off 410 quite well these days.
That is all for now, time to drink some more coffee, and then run errands so that I can be free this evening of all worldly attachments, living in the moment. I again had this urge today to race again, long, punishing to feel that satisfaction of finishing, to get back in the saddle. I learn so much about myself while suffering, that I crave it like a drug, it has a very calming effect, I miss it. Another idea, shirts with a picute of a bike that says my drug. Probably already exists somewhere, but I could make my own, that is when I learn to silkscreen. I am learning to sew soon, taking a class. as alway keep pedaling.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

I am feeling the itch

I am feeling the itch, however slight it may be, to race again. Not to be the fastest guy out there, because I can tell you in a long endurance race I would suffer. wow, thats a news flash, I mean everone suffers, but I would be in the pain prison at a lower level than I was used to. I think. That is why I am getting the urge to race a 24 hr race solo or a 100 miler this year perhaps. I just got back from Northern Idaho, where I had the pleasure of riding some sweet singletrack. Each day I rode about 15 to 20 miles of dirt in about an 1 1/2 with 2500 vertical gain. I had the pleasure of riding with Matt C. Who I knew from racing. He used to live in Auburn, but now lives in Idaho. It was great to ride trails with him. The first day his hub exploded on him, forcing him to walk it back to the car. We heard this creaking noise and simaltaneouly both said "that doesn't sound good" and then he went ass over tea kettle. He completely destroyed the bearing in his American Classic hub. We were about 2 miles in to the ride, so I continued up while he went back to the cars. Matt is an amazing rider. Wish we lived a little closer so that we could feed off each others energy and push each other to ride harder. The next day we met up agian to do another ride that was pretty brutal for how short it was. a 7 mile 2500 ft climb, 3 1/2 on singletrack which was the bulk of the climb, then a fast descent for 2/3 of the way down followed by a insanly technical high consecence section. All the single track I rode in idaho was ribbon thin, never more than eight inches wide. It was amazing. I wished I had more time to do more rides there, but alas I had to go back to work and the real world.
Back to the racing, if not this year definatly next year. I would like to do the Wilderness 101 and the Shennendoah 100. The Creampuff, is at new area this year so that is on the list. I need to get back to park city to do the e100 again, or at least see boris. This year has been very unstructured and focusing on recovery, I am still a little hesitant to push it too soon, as "the illness" is lingering, but seems to be on its way out. My focus will be fun fun fun, I need to get in more dirt riding longer distances to see how the body feels after it, I will also be putting in more road miles, in fact I am going to go and get in about 50 as soon as i am done with this post. Life is about to get hectic for a bit here, work will be taking over, but i have some good brakes coming up in mid september.
Speaking of mid september, I am going to be getting back to tahoe, where the altitude will hurt me and riding with an old friend and racing partner. I just got an email from him, Keith and I havn't talked in awhile, but I was overjoyed that he contacted me out of the blue to see what I was up to. He seems to be doing real well now, he is sking again and has a new found balance and acceptance of it all it seems. I cant wait to see him and chase him around some loops he has up in tahoe.
I pick the wrong person to get parts from for the offroad fixie, he is taking his sweet time, I am trying to be patient, but it is not so easy, hopefully two weeks, I knwo I keep saying that, but this is the way it sometimes happen when you dont plan ahead well. that and the fact that I am paying two mortages is sucking my dry and making it hard to find the money. So there you have it. Sunday I think I am going to explore in the 410 area again, and see how many miles I can put in. as always keep pedaling.