Friday, February 29, 2008

So Long

It is with great sadness that I finally lay to rest my commuter bike. This untimely retirement came as a result of yesterday’s head-on collision with a SUV as I was traveling north bound on 14th street. In addition to my bent fork and cracked down tube, I also managed to crack the woman’s windshield with my helmet. Once the motorist assessed her damages she decided to alert the police. Within moments a swarm of bike cops arrived and quickly took inventory of the situation. Upon their assessment they concluded that no further action was necessary as damages sustained by both parties were of equal severity. Despite the dramatic display of launching onto her hood, I was relatively unscathed. (photo on top left taken by gwadzilla a few weeks ago)

Today my neck is a little sore, and I am discovering a few bruises here and there, but the real recovery is in letting go of a bike I have grown to love over the last 5 years. It fit me like a favorite pair of jeans. I salvaged what parts I could, and am now in the process of piecing together a new commuter bike with the help of the Freeze Thaw Guys. Turns out that frameset I bought at the Trexlertown Velo Swap is actually going to come in handy. Maybe it was a good $40 bucks spent after all.

Looks like I'm gonna have to double up on my sock sales!

PS - For legal reasons I declined to mention that it was actually more my fault than hers...now that everything has blown over, I'll go ahead and take complete responsibility for my actions.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Well Worn

I think it's about time for a new road bike, but I'm a little short on funds. So...I started thinking outside the box. I've always wondered if people really do sell their used socks on ebay...turns out they do. Looks like an easy way to turn a nice profit. You laugh, but just wait 'till I roll up on my new ride! (logo by omegablogger)

Here are some examples I found while searching for "used socks" on ebay. I have copied and pasted the titles verbatim.



Men's Very Used Socks Well Worn Dress Socks from JB Current price: $9.99








Well Worn USED Socks
Current Price: $4.99







Mens used well worn Joe Boxer ankle socks black ringer
Current price: $.99










USED worn KNEE HIGH socks white with RAINBOW stripes !!
Current price: $12.50











Used Well Worn Red Cotton Socks!!!!!!!
Current price: $7.99











Any prospective sponsors out there? Please leave your contact info in the comments box!


An important public service announcement from ebay
:



Tuesday, February 26, 2008

12 More Days

Just 12 more days until daylight Saving Time begins!!! Woohoo!!!! Can't wait to ride outside after work!!!!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Still Winter

Another lovely weekend. Friday night I went out with my friend Margaux to see the Alvin Ailey Dance Company perform at the Kennedy Center. My favorite piece, Revelations, was originally choreographed by Alvin Ailey back in the 60s or 70s. The energy and emotion running through their bodies leaped from the stage and left Margaux and I moved to tears.

The remainder of the weekend was an amalgam of bike riding and socializing….pretty much all you need to make it through another work week. Both Saturday and Sunday were spent in the watershed.






Saturday’s ride with Dietrich and company.












Looks like Eric forgot to pack food…









It was still fairly cold on Saturday so the snow had some good traction (photo taken by Kate, and is part of Dietrich's permanent collection)







Rode with Matt and Darren on Sunday:






Matt is one B.A.M.F. on his rigid single speed!







The snow was beginning to melt...which meant a little less traction.

Friday, February 22, 2008

DC Roller Girls!!!

Get your tickets before they sell out!!!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Presidential Rides

Once again, I took a gamble on the weather, loaded up my trusty Tacoma, and headed down south for President's Day weekend. This time it was a solo venture...the eight hour drive gave me some time to do a self assessment on my five year plan. I came to the conclusion that there is some realigning I need to do with respect to said plan.

Arriving in Hendersonville, I immediatly set to work organizing the ride schedule. The following four entries provide a brief outline of the weekend's events.

Cross Ride

Leaving from Hendersonville and dipping down into Saluda, this quick 30 mile loop provides the rider a tour of some of North & South Carolina's finest Christian yard art. Most impressive is the collection of crosses that grace the road side. I believe there were a total of 5:











































Some other things I saw along the way....









Ahhhhh! It's a soil and water conservation nightmare!!!!!













southern history













Interesting railroad facts













The site of my new training center










Stopped by Ted's gallery to say hello













THE END!!!

3 Gap!!!

Saturday morning I met up with my good friends Maria, Nick, and K...along with the new generation of UGA kids to ride 3Gap located just outside Dahlonega, GA. This ride is definetly in my top 3 of all time favorite road rides. It is also a popular route for the Tour de Georgia. The roads along this route are littered with painted expressions of support by race spectators from years past. Although these words of encouragement were not intended for me, I still find them helpful as I grind my way up Neels, Wolf Pen, and Woody Gap. (photo on left taken on Wolf Pen 2 years ago)

With temperatures reaching the 60s, it was a popular day to be in the mountains. The roads were an endless (well maybe not endless, but you get the idea) stream of cyclists, with and without motors. Road teams were out in droves...some even with their own support car, which proved to be helpful when one of our own men laid the bike down when turning a gravel speckled corner....

At the end of the day we decided to go up Neels Gap once more...it was to be my first time descending the south side of Neels. It is one of the most amazing descents I have ever had the pleasure of bombing. The road winds it's way down the mountain with perfectly crafted banks that allow you to confidently lean the bike at speeds that would make your grandmother roll in her grave.

It was a beautiful day to be on the bike in the company of old friends...and the next generaton of UGA cycling. This will be the year they win the SECCC! I feel it!!!

Black Mountain to.....

Well, I tried to do my favorite loop in the Pisgahs again. This time I got a bit farther than Joos and I did in the snow over MLK weekend. Ultimately I had to cut things short on account of the rain. Being the trooper that I am, I pushed on....but things got pretty sketchy. I was alone, on a sketchy-ass descent, in the rain, trying to navigate around tight hair pin turns with steep drop offs, criss crossed with a maze of slick-ass roots and rocks.

Taking all of these things into account, the self preservationist and soil conservationist in me opted to take the gravel road back. On my way back to the car I stopped by a gathering of people who had just finished a 36 hour endurance mtb race held in the Pisgahs. There were something like 7 2-person teams and 2 or 3 solo riders. Such a humble gathering for such an amazing accomplishment!

Unfortunately I didn't get the 4+ hour ride in I was looking for, so I headed to the gym with my grandmother. Together we pumped the iron. At 92, she's a beast in the gym.


Biltmore Forest

Monday morning I met up with my friend Ben at Liberty Bikes in Asheville. Before heading out I had some time to catch up with an old friend from Athens who now works at Liberty. Reminiscing over the town characters we grew to love, he brought my attention to this clip of Rollin’ Joel. What a gem!!!!




Ben and I went on a short little spin around the Biltmore Forest area and caught up on the last couple years of our lives…it’s been a hectic couple of years. It was an absolutely beautiful day to be on the bike, but alas my job awaits me in DC. It was with trepidation that I climbed aboard my Tacoma for the long haul home. There is nothing sadder than driving on a day that would be better spent on a bike. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted!

No More Sugar

This year's NORBA Nationals Race Series will no longer include the Sugar Mountain course in Banner Elk, North Carolina as part of it's schedule and will instead be held in Windham, New York. As much as I love the mountains of North Carolina, I was never a very big fan of that course. Although I am not familiar with the likes of Windham Mountain, I welcome the change and look forward to a slightly shorter drive.

Oh, and I think this is already old news, but the national championships will once again be held at Mt. Snow, VT. My most favorite race course of all time!!! This year I won't drink from the hose!

Poop

While at a gas station in North Carolina, I saw a man drive away in a turquoise Pontiac Grand Am with this bumper sticker:









It is now my new favorite bumper sticker of all time.

ps - ride reports from Pres. Day Weekend soon to follow

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Climbing & Cake

My primary goal for this season is to learn to love climbing


as much as I love Birthday Cake.






Friday, February 15, 2008

3Gap 2Morrow!!!

Saturday 11am

Dahlonega, Ga

(Walmart Parking Lot)
2nd Lap Optional

See you there!!!





Three Gap. 52 Miles, 4500' elevation gain.
Start: Dahlonegha/Ga19 (We usually park in the A&P lot just north of town on the way out) -> Porter Springs -> Turn left at Turners Corner -> Neals Gap -> L Ga180 (after signs for Vogel State Park) -> Wolfpen Gap -> turn left in Suches onto Ga60 -> Woody Gap -> joins Ga19 -> Dahlonegha (http://www.math.colostate.edu/~estep/bike/ga_rides.html)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Best Ideas Ever

In effort to even out the slightly negative energy I spit into the cosmos with my piece “Idle Chatter”, I have decided to follow it up with the following:

The 7 Best Ideas Ever





Knog lights: Fashion and function!!!














The rear derailleur hanger bender thing. What a life saver!!!














The WiseCracker: "Because Beer can't open itself"











Very convenient for race weekends. Also a handy substitute for gels.











Butter "Stick Type": No more wrestling with clumpy butter!










Deuter packs: Well ventilated hydration. The best on the market!












Gears, lots of them.