Monday, December 31, 2007

Did you get a few of those "year in review" letters that people like to write? I got one that was written in the third person! "Nancy decided to take up hiking, and found a wonderful outlet for her daily stress". Of course, that quote was from a letter written by.....Nancy.

So as a tribute, I figured I ought to at least give an old College try to authoring a quick year in review in the third person. Here we go:

Chris doesn't know what to make of 2007. He goes from a honey-do job of painting two bedrooms in January to losing his Step-Mom to ovarian cancer on 12/30. All Chris learned is that things happen fast, and if he doesn't make choices, then time will make the choices for him.

In between Chris saw his lovely wife die a slow death in the corporate world, spin out of that with some control looking for a path to take, and then re-inventing herself on 12/31 with the decision to attend a massage school in Sedona starting 1/8/08. He saw his daughter embrace school, cycling, skateboarding, and he learned through her a lot more about patience, and the importance of direct communication.

Chris found solace in race results, with a 2nd place in a hotly contested mountain bike race in August, and a 9th place in a tough 52 miler in early October. The rest of the races before and after were just that, races. A few crashes, a few mechanicals, and some frustrating results to fuel the fire to race more.

OK, enough of that...Happy New Year. Cheers to health, health, and more health. You can't have the rest of life without it.


Sunday, December 30, 2007

Just thinkin about summer, that's all

Friday, December 28, 2007

I think I figured out why I've been snowshoeing up Snowbowl at 5am for the past couple of weeks.

6 In The Morning

I read somewhere
about a writer
as he got older
no longer
stayed up late at night
chasing his demons


he’d get up early
and grab the bitch
by the throat

I guess that’s why
I’m writing this
at 6
in the morning

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Just a bunch o' random stuff to chew on

My Dad once said "Life's a bitch and then you die". It's not like anyone else hasn't said that a million times, but I think he really meant it when he said it 27 years ago, and I think if you asked him now he'd still say the same thing. I remember him saying it vividly when we were on a fishing trip.

I definately have a different outlook, and I think it goes a little something like this:
-Wake up and hit it...hard...everyday, but don't forget to stop every now and then to take inventory of yourself. Make decisions instead of time making decisions for you. karma is real. If you're not having fun then clarify why not, and make some changes -

Shallow, I know, but that's all I can come up with after 40 years. It's a good thing there are philosophers and therapists out there who actually put some thought into this stuff. OK - so I had some fun last night.....Me and D laughed a lot watching a movie, and then I got to go skiing this morning for a short bit. The temp was -4 at the top @ 7:00am, but the descent was great after another hike up to the top. We need more snow soon. I'm staying in shape with these hillclimbs, and I hope it translates to cycling fitness next month. The AZ racing calendar starts 1/19 for me in Phx.

On the campaign trail, things are gettin' kinda hectic in Iowa. Huckabee is making a nice run at the GOP victory, and Obama - thanks to Oprah - is digging into Cheap Thrill Hillary's "lead". I had a hilarious conversation with one of my right-wing friends last week. A friend who absolutely, positively will vote for the most Christian candidate egardless of his views of the socio-economic issues. He was pleasantly surprised to know that I'm still supporting John McCain in his bid in spite of my tree-hugger, liberal reputation. However, he isn't voting for McCain because he's not religious enough. McCain will probably not even make it out of the GOP primary because of voters like my religious buddy Ken. However if he does survive, McCain is the only guy in my opinion who can get Dem, GOP and Independent votes. Ron Paul - whatever. Guiliani, Thompson, Edwards - irrelevant. I think Huckabee will fall victim to his true self, when everyone is told of how intolerant he is of those with alternative lifestyles.

I don't care who you vote for next year, simply exercising your right is all I hope for. But if you're on the fence, look up McCain - and his Cougar wife - and give it some thought. He's realistic about getting out of Iraq, he's written a fair approach to solving the immigration issues, and he's a guy who is not afraid to say the unpopular thing because he believes it.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Back to life, back to reality...

After a 3-night hiatus in Tucson with family, I am back at work this week - yup, I'm working Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It's not a big deal - Lyza is with her Mom for Christmas and now that we had a chance to catch up with family, working this week feels pretty normal.

Up at 4:45am this morning, drove to the base of the Snowbowl, and snowshoed up again. This time I took a longer route. 1.5 hour hike up, and 6 minutes to get down - I took my time since the hike hurt this morning. A couple of pitches were so steep, I was moving 3-6 inches at a time, and almost fell ass over tea kettle down the slope. It was a full moon, temps were warm in the teens, and the sun just hit the horizon as I turned my board downhill. My camera wouldn't even do it justice, so I'll bank the memory. I needed this bustout, after a few shitburgers the past couple of days.

1.) Of virtually no importance whatsoever, I believe I smashed my laptop screen by pushing the power seat button a little too much on the way home from Tucson. It's DONE - no screen left.
2.) Of huge importance, my Step-Mom is really hurting - she's resting comfortably on morphene - but she's struggling in her long fight with ovarian cancer.
3.) I can't even go into the 3rd one yet since I don't have all the details.

I had a great year in a lot of ways, but it just seems like things come crumbling down sometimes - all at once. Fortunately, I've learned a lot about resilience, persistence, and patience - ironically a lot of it from a 6 year old. F*ck - I'll need it to get through the next couple of months.

Hell - the Small Town Douche Bags are even falling down a bit. We may be down to 3 riders as one may have to bow out with a back injury. I guess in a sickly, suffering way I'm pretty psyched to bury myself into the ground Feb 15th in Tucson. I'd love to ride 100+ miles on that cactus filled dirt course - it would be great training for the real races that start in March.

I hope you have a warm, safe holiday season. Here's to a new slate for 2008. Personally, and politically (it's about time).

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Images from the top of Arizona.....7:00am 12/16. The lifts weren't running yet. The snow was freshly groomed. Not a sign of wildlife, but an pinkish incandescent sunrise. Snowshoeing up took about an hour of hard work, but it was worth it. The winds were completely still at 11,500 feet, and you could see the south rim of the Grand Canyon to the north. Then.....a 3 minute plunge to the bottom on smooth snow. It was a great start to Sunday.

Sunday, December 16, 2007


When my Mom turned 40 I remember it being a 'sorta roast' from her friends. Over the hill comments, ect. I'm not really sure why 40 is such a landmark other than it usually means you're probably starting to slow down mentally, physically, etc... Well I turn 4-0 tomorrow. According to female, African-American rappers, "Age ain't nuttin' but a numba".

Yesterday was a blur. I left Flagstaff with Rob at 7:15am. It was 2 degrees. By the time we started riding in Sedona it as just below freezing - much, much better. We had a great ride on the frozen red dirt, which gradually turned to sticky mud as we wrapped up the ride around 11:45am. A good 3.5 hour ass pounding was just what I needed. Then over to work for 3 hours, and off to do some X-mas shopping.

I got Bodhi and Jamocha out at 9pm for an hour bust-out in the snow. Bodhi, being the young pup he is, found a porcupine, and now has 15 darts in his nose and face. I pulled two out and he's about done with me doing that. We're probably looking at a vet visit tomorrow morning to tranquilize his ass and pull them out. These goddamn dogs are a blessing, and an expensive one at that. I love the little guy though. He took his punishment, and he hasn't whimpered once. Hopefully he'll learn.

Up at the crack of ass this morning (5am to be exact). Picked up Aaron and we drove 13 miles to the base of the ski resort. Strapped on the snowshoes and walked up the slopes to 11,500 feet in a little over an hour. I was soaked with sweat, but man - watching the sun rise over the valley was friggin' spectacular. Pics to follow this week. All of that for one 3 minute bomber run down the mountain on the was fresh groomed cordury - perfect for long carving turns. Now - it's 8:30am and I'm done for the day.....done working out, and on to cleaning the damn house. Just because it's your birthday doesn't mean sh*t - you still have to keep the place respectable.

I'm taking the day off tomorrow to ski free on my birthday. This time I'm not hiking up for one run down. It should be a good time, but I'll feel like a sandbagger. There's some real soul food in earning your downhill run.

Finally - the Small Town Douche Bags are officially a team at the 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo in February. We could be good, we could be marginal, but we'll have fun doing it.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Fryday bluddy Friday...

"It doesn't make me feel comfortable to see a guy walking alone carrying a shovel around the city. Snow shovels are okay, I'm talking about earth-moving shovels here. A guy carrying a shovel around at night has secrets, things you don't want to know. Carrying a shovel means that the person has either just dug up something or is on his way to bury something. And it's worse when you see the guy with the shovel walking around late at night, because then you know whatever needs digging can't wait until morning. If I was a cop I would probably get in trouble for profiling guys carrying shovels around because my only police tactic would be to follow these people until they lead me to the scene of their crime."

On another note, I won my 3rd consecutive racquetball tourney last night. I beat Paul the Caveman (He's hairy and he mumbles) in the final. He was pretty tired, and he didn't put up much of a fight. It's time to go pro. Semi-pro that is. Next league starts in Jan and I'm getting the upgrade. It really doesn't mean sh*t. Just better players, more responsibility to play and show up for tournaments, and a couple of free racquets and some shoes. All I know, is that its fun to play with the better players in the state, as it makes me work harder, and its humbling to get your ass kicked by the elite players.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Holiday Blues....

Three work-related holiday parties in 7 days has me about DONE with people I don't know very well, obnoxious food offerings, and free booze. As usual, none of this is about the spirit of giving. Then again, neither am I. I want:


Racquetball tourney starts tonight. I'm going for the 3-peat. On the line is a sweet Ektelon Racquetball bag. I want it, I need it, I love it.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Night Rider.....

That's my name. The days are too short. What's a self-professed addicted rider to do? Trainer- hell no. Rollers-not unless there's 6 inches of snowpack on the road.

I rolled out at 9pm to frozen ground, and a light dusting of snow. Traction was superb thanks to the flaky snow, and I climbed and climbed and climbed to warm up. At about 8,500 feet it was as if the last storm had laid a blanket of snow down. Instantly it was 6 inches deep, and as crusty as a high school girl's made up face. Rather than go back the way I came, I forged on. Ride - walk - ride - walk. Finally making it to Schultz Pass road. It was frozen like a skating rink, and I kinda skidded downhill for a mile until the snow relented.

Last Sunday was much better. Roadtrip to Sedona (I say roadtrip - but it is all of about 40 minutes). 58 degrees, sunny, and the red dirt felt like velcro. My new tire setup (Stans tubeless with WTB Exiwolf 2.3's) was amazing. Rear at 36psi, and front at 34psi. The only thing limiting me was my own fitness. We hammered off and on for 2.5 hours until I couldn't push the singlespeed anymore.

I'm committed to riding 6-8 hours per week. Not exactly road racing fitness, but certainly good enough to begin the state series in January racing mid-pack until I get my fitness back around April.

Check this one - My Uncle has become Mel Gibson. Not the racist drunk, nope - the Conspiracy Theory one. He thinks that 'secret societies' are convening to get Hillary into the White House. He isn't even a die hard Republican either. I had to laugh at that one. First - influential secret societies are typically made up of conservative white guys. So....I would tend to believe that these secret societies might be conniving to get, say, Mick Huckabee in office. Or maybe Ron Paul?

Happy f'n Thursday - and Fish - don't think I haven't thought about giving you sh*t about Jon Kitna's predicted 10 win season. Go Vikes...

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Tribute to the last true stud of my lifetime..

Evel Kneivel died, age 69. Beat up, beat down, broke, spent, and in a hella lot o' pain. Maybe 6-9 months ago, USA Today did about a full page story on him. They listed the number of broken bones, successful and unsuccessful jumps, operations, and the fact that he was piss-poor now. He's also found Jesus through it all.

I saw this guy as an icon as a kid. His insane jumps televised on live network television. Crashes were as frequent as successes so you never knew if he could pull a jump off. The distances seemed ridiculous, the obstacles - too numerous. Cars, vans, trucks, lions, crates of rattlesnakes. Even at the end of his career he tried to jump the Snake River Canyon in a rocket.

There are a lot of young dudes doing incredible things on their motocross bikes these days. Backflips, crazy aerials, you name it. These are conditioned athletes on machines built for stunts. Kneivel? Rode a stock motorcycle with a reinforced frame which of course, severed at the welds several times. His suspension often kicked him up over the front end on a landing, and I would have to imagine that the vertebrae in his back were really what 'suspended' his landings. Crazy, crazy, crazy. Truly crazy. Look up his crashes and successful jumps on youtube and you'll see just how ridiculous this guy was.

Fortunately, I'm a pussy and I couldn't bring myself to the point of wrecking myself just to 'pull it off'. Kneivel was the guy I could never be - so even today I ride my bike vicariously through him, and when I see the next 6 foot drop in the slickrock.....I step off, walk down, and think "damn, Kneivel would ride this with a trike". There is nobody who had his stones, and there is nobody now who would even consider doing what he did for the money he made which by today's standards would amount to squat.

Mr. Kneivel - rest in peace

Another one of your fans

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Key West is often talked up as the 'Southernmost point in the US'. Actually - South Point, HI is the southernmost point in the US. As usual, entrepreneurs have opened the Southernmost restaurant in the US, the Southernmost farmers market, and the Southernmost vegetable garden in the US. OK - I made those last two up, but I did see several shlocky signs that tried to capitalize on this. What this place is really? The damn windiest point on the island. Sustained winds of 35+ during the day. The surf was anywhere from 8-12 feet, and upwards of 30 on some days. Those giant windmills were a sign of times gone by - replaced by new ones that were about 2x as big - but impossible to get a good picture of. Even these had blades that were probably 30 feet long on each side.

That's my goofy ass on the southernmost rock I could find without getting pulled into the ocean. Next stop would be Antarctica unless you could paddle out of the current to Fiji. One other cool thing about this barren place? They catch trophy size Marlin from the cliffs. 1,000 pounders. There was a 35 foot cliff some goofball tourists were jumping off of into the clearest water I could see. However, the thought of dancing with a 1,000 pound marlin overrode my desire to make the jump.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Volcanically heated tidepools. When the swells weren't crashing, it was like the greatest negative edge pool ever built by nature

After a 2 week hiatus from riding bikes, I swung a leg over the old Cannondale last night and left the house around 9pm. The wind was light, the sky was clear and it was F'ing cold. 19 degrees I think when I left. The climbs were warm, the flats were cool, and the drop back down to Flagstaff was bone chilling. I had neoprene booties on, and my right foot still felt like a frozen paw.

It was worth it.

Driving in to work this morning I saw a HUGE bus with Michael Myers on it - seems they are filming part of Halloween 7 in Flagstaff. Perfect spot if you as me. There are plenty of local derelicts to get rid of. I'm gonna stop back there on the way home and see if they need an extra. I'd LOVE to get down with Mike Myers. I still have the Halloween theme song as a ringtone on my cellie, although I've been playing the exorcist lately. Am I crazy? I think I was dropped as a child.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Day 1 of any trip always features some ups and downs....

Traveling to Kona via Honolulu takes a while even from Phoenix. Nearly 7 hours of flight time plus a 2 hour layover meant a long day. Fortunately, I spotted this assclown on Hapuna Beach outside of Kona on day 2. Yup - that's a smiley face tattooed on his right cheek, and a Banana Hanger swimsuit. Too bad you can't see the pierced nipples in front with the girlfriend that was wayyy past her prime. The great thing is that this dude was uber confident. Strutin' from the water to the beach. Indeed all that and a bag o' chips.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I'm off to the Big Island....

Update on the 27th. Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

F*cking Vikings....

It's just a reminder that pro football is just entertainment, and the Packers are pretty good at entertaining. I hope they take the NFC and stun the Pats in the Super Bowl - and then Favre can ride off on a Quad with a gun rack into the Louisiana sunset with a bottle of vicodin to boot.

I am so ass over tea kettle when it comes to getting the hell outta town on Thursday at 4am. As in, I have a sh*tload to do and no time to do it in. Of course, I always find time to ride and on Sunday I burned the old lungs to max capacity in a 3-man 'race' around the front side of Mt. Elden with AK47 and Ellsie. AK rode some ridiculous 30 races or some sh*t like that this year so he's in great shape and Ellsie has been trail running to get back in shape. Well AK wanted to go HARD and he hammered the flats. I got him on the climbs by a hair and dropped him on the descents. The thing is, I think he thought we weren't racing, and I did. So he probably went home and installed a ceiling fan, did some work around the house etc....while I went home, ate, put my legs up, and went to bed. Taking 12 days off the bike will feel great, but I'll be itching to get back on in December. Racing starts again Jan 5th with a short track burner down in Phoenix.

Friday, November 9, 2007


Right in the eye with a racquetball last night. Good thing I had protective glasses on. I could see the ball coming at the last second, but there was no way I could even react. Now I have a headache, and a nice cut on the side of my nose (which bled like a streambed in at first, then bone dry). BUT, I still have two eyes. Two weeks, two head rattling injuries - I love racquetball.

Before that little session of fun last night, I managed to squeeze in nearly a 1 and 1/2 hour ride on the SS. Beautiful fall day, warm temps, great trails, and virtually no one on them. You have to be done by 5:45 now - and I came in a bout 10 minutes before dark.

Lyza is back tonight. No plans this weekend - just the way I like it. I swear I could never be one of those super-mom's because I have no idea what's for school lunch on Monday, I have to think about the acronym PTA first before barely reciting what it means, and as far as preparing for show and tell on Tuesday? Are you kidding me? Good think Lyza is an independent kid to a certain degree.

It looks like D is definately going to massage therapy school in Scottsdale starting on 1/14. I am 100% behind this decision. It's a skill you can take anywhere, people pony up for it without hesitation, and it works. I get sh*t all the time for having shaved legs, but ain't about cleaning crash wounds when you wipe out (although it helps) - its about getting a great massage and recovery.

Have a good weekend - go Vikes and I have a mancrush on Adrian Peterson.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


We had a Red Rock Racing team meeting last know, getting our clothing orders together, looking for some more fast guys/chicks to round out our race team and talking about sponsors. 9:00pm hit and GP and I decided a night ride was in order. The clouds were above, so it felt warm.

There's something just incredibly cool about night riding. The trails become 'new' again since you can't see peripherally, and ultimately you slow down a bit. Then -once your adjusted to the night, it almost feels like you're surfing terra firma. We did an easy 1.5 hour out and back. 3 showings of wildlife, 1 camper (sorry about the HID lights pal!), and not much else. Considering the weekend I had of all work and very little play, this was the highlight of the past 3 days.

It looks like D may be attending a massage school in Phx for 8 months starting in Jan. More on that to come.


Monday, November 5, 2007


It's 67 degrees today when we should be around 52. No snow, no rain....the trails are dusty, and I'm ready to shift gears. Literally. I rode the Scalpel this weekend for all of one hour, and realized how great gears are when you are suckin' ass at the end of a cycling season. Full suspension, 27 speeds, tubeless tires....all good.

I rolled down to Phoenix for my buddy A-man's 39th b-day. The dude who took him golfing - and in the process ensured a quality SURPRISE party as we all gathered in their absence - started puking around 7:30pm and never stopped. I held up my end as I had all of 2 bottles of Stella Artois beer and a glass of some outstanding Syrah. I was the soberest (is that a word?) person there. I sound like a douche bag, wanna-be rich guy poaching a party, but hey when somebody else is buying....right?! It was a great party, and Aidan is a great friend so it was well worth the drive down and back.

I'll post some halloween pics tonight. Gotta run now - work owns me this week. I can't wait for the Small Town D-Bags to descend on Tucson. Good times ahead.


Friday, November 2, 2007

Today's Top Tramp Stamp....

I thought this blog needed a new look too.

Pride and joy and greed and sex
That's what makes our town the best
Pride and joy and dirty dreams and still surviving on the street
And look at me, I'm in tatters, yeah I've been battered, what does it matter
Does it matter, uh-huh Does it matter, uh-huh, I'm a shattered
-The Stones

I am shattered. I played Dan Dan the Little Man last night in racquetball, and I was cruising to victory. The first game was 15-2, and I was leading the second game 7-5 when he crushed a forehand down the line and I went for it. I went too hard – and I couldn’t stop….and crumpled into the wall. The next thing I knew, I was on the ground looking up. My Oakley ½ Jackets did their job, as they exploded away from my face. The lens popped out, the arm broke free and the frames went flying. No cuts or scrapes, and they snapped back together. I think my headband helped too, because I only had a small knot on my forehead. About 45 seconds later – or so it seemed, my head was woosy and I was back up and playing. Damn close call. I wish I could say I made some dramatic shot – but I didn’t and I lost the point. My cabeza took a while to clear and I started to overheat and my legs turned to jelly. It was weird – possibly semi concussed? I lost that game, but I recovered in time to beat his ass 11-2 in the tiebreaker. Then came Mike the Loudmouth. Calling out the score in crazy clich├ęs (5 to 5, Double Nickel, I can’t drive 55). He can take his lounge act to the next court, because I didn’t have the patience for it. Our match ended quickly as I wasn’t about to spend too much time on the court with him and I felt it was my duty to whitewash him. I went home, took a couple of Tylenols and crashed like a ton of bricks.

Holy crap this was a busy week with Halloween, and a lot of work mixed in. I’m headed out for a 4-hour fattie ride tomorrow morning in the pines, then off to work for 3 hours and then on the Phoenix for a b-day party. One of my college buds turns 39. He’s a spring chicken amongst the rest of us who start turning 40 next month. I have to say I’m pumped about turning 40 since I get to race in the 40-49 category soon.

Tech Notes:
-Rather than buying a new wheelset, I converted my Bontrager Rims with Stan’s Tubeless….$80 versus $450. Easy call there. new WTB Exiwolfs too.....28psi here I come!
-3 committed for Old Pueblo so far....anyone else wanna come play?

Enjoy your weekend, and go Vikes

Monday, October 29, 2007

Another weekend that rocketed by like a Josh Beckett fastball…

Saturday up early (see bike geek section below) – followed by raking and bagging 15 loads of fallen pine needles. Sunday was spent at work for 5 hours, followed by Lyza’s last soccer game, and a sweet visit to Target. If we had stopped at Olive Garden and Home Depot it would have been the All American Weekend. Don’t worry – we didn’t. Olive Garden has more saturated oil/fat than the former Exxon Valdez + they feature employees with FLAIR buttons. Home Depot has now officially become Chinese Depot since well over 51% of their products are made over ‘dere. Here’s a thought: Re-use other people’s discards (can you believe how much good sh*t you can find if you ask around…for free!) Also, frequent your local hardware store and pay the extra 8% to keep ‘em in business. OK – off my pulpit.

Bike Geek Section (warning – read only if you are a weight weenie, tech head, 2 wheel obsessed cycle junkie)
The test with the Stan’s ZTR’s paired up with the American Classic hubs was enjoyable – hell, it was the only thing that got me up at 5:50 on a Saturday morning. Let me just start by saying that when I left my house the sun was about 2 minutes from rising in the east and the orange hue was nearly blinding. I look to my left and the Hunter’s Moon was HUGE. It was truly one of those memorable sights where you say to yourself “I’m glad I woke up at the crack of ass for this”.

2 problems – first, I did not remove the 20tooth cog on the Stan’s wheelset. My wheelset features an 18 tooth cog. Second, the 2.3 high volume casing WTB Exiwolf tyres (do you like my Euro-trash spelling there?!) were significantly taller than the 2.1 Bontrager Jones XR tyres I’m shredding currently. SO – I couldn’t compare apples to apples on this test.

Net Result, Bottom Line, The Money Shot…….
Because of the larger rear cog, and the HUGE tires, I could not accurately gauge the impact of lighter rims when climbing technical stuff. What I did learn is this: The tubeless setup let me run a psi of less than 30. Talk about TRACTION. I got up and over everything without spinning out, and I felt like I had another ½ inch of travel on my hardtail RIG.

I believe that with the weight of 29” tires, any superlight rims have the potential of being made a moot point. For me, a middle to upper end line of rims (see Bontrager TLR’s) with a tubeless set up that allows around 27-28psi would be the ticket. This will save me some bread too.

Rest o’ the week…
I’m bailing on the MTB marathon this weekend in Phx. I’d rather ride in the pines up in Flag – and it won’t cost me $1 per mile. ‘Sides – I have a few repairs to handle on the Scalpel before its ready to roll again. We leave for Hawaii in a little over 2 weeks and I could use ever $$ I have for that bank buster. MAHALO baby, mahalo.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Modern Day Shakesperian Lyrical Poets

I'm ready for Funday Saturday. Racquetball went well last night. I pasted Softball Scott. The dude tore both of his hammies playing......are you ready for this.....SOFTBALL. Running the bases. Anyway, he has a cannon forehand, but he can't move much anymore, so I mercilessly just ran him from forehand to backhand and mixed up serves so he had a hard time getting to the balls. He started calling 'screens' and 'hinders', but it didn't matter.

Speaking of Hinder - could this be the single worst band in the history of Rock n' Roll. Check these deep, thought provoking, clever lyrics out....makes you wonder just who in the hell determines who gets recording contracts:

"I don't wanna know it's over
So save your goodbye kiss
I don't wanna know it's over
Cause ignorance is bliss
I can hardly see
What's in front of me
Cause the vodka's running on empty
I can't stay sober
If it's over "

Hey - I get a glimpse of Christmas this weekend. What's that you say? I borrowed a pair of Stan's ZTR 29'er rims laced to American Classic hubs to try for the weekend. Yup - I'll get to see what saving 350+ grams of rolling weight really means to a 29'er. I can't even wait for my ride tomorrow - it shoud be a blast!

Have a great weekend, and make sure you litter it with songs from Hinder, Hoobastank, Finger 11 and Tool - because if you like that crap you are a TOOL.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Finally, out of the f'n blue...

I felt strong again. I popped off a quick 1 hour singlespeed ride after work tonight, and I felt normal again. Damn - I think its a proven fact that I need to rock myself into the ground for 3-4 days of hard/suffering-type rides, rest for two days and then go shred it like a head of lettuce.

That 50 miler next Saturday is gonna be fun. One more training ride, and I am ready to rest and then rip. It should be a small field - maybe 10 riders max. I'll mark the 3rd place dude and make sure I keep him in my sights so I have a shot at the podium on the last lap.....unless he's too fast. Maybe he'll be slow and I'll pounce on #2 or #1. I've never outright won yet, so I'm gonna put the crack pipe down now.....but I'm racing to win that's for sure. As Josh said "go as hard as you can until you see the water cooler" I wonder if you put a pony keg of Red Hook Ale out there....I'd ride fast to that.

No shitburger for lunch today......just a nice burrito. It went down well. I'm ready for some more sh*t tomorrow, but that's tomorrow. As Sammy Hagar once said at a live concert in Fresno, Ca in 1991, "Tomorrow? F*ck's about RIGHT NOW". Well right now, I still have to do dishes, run a load of laundry, balance the chemicals in the hot tub, and sweep the f'n floor as Bodhi ate a plastic pitcher for lunch today - and left the remains on the living room floor. I'd call my life semi-charmed, and a lot less than glamorous.

The devastation in Southern California
has definately reached, and/or eclipsed Hurricane Katrina levels. I guess the only solace is knowing that our government seems a hella lot more prepared to deal with this type of disaster than before. Word via National Public Radio is that the state/fed/county officials are cooperating well to really help people. Hoteliers are selling rooms for 1/2 price to help stranded families and I would imagine that grocers and retailers are helping as well. It's always great to see how people respond in the event of a true emergency. All the greed instantly goes away and people are just there to help.

Although we had our fire here last summer, it was pretty small potatoes compared to this devastation. Sure, we were out of business for a week, but we didn't lose a thing - no structures, no lives. Just money which was recovered over time.

Make a red cross donation if you can...even $10 helps.

Steve has a take on this that hits home too....

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Man, the shitburgers that I have been eating for the last couple of weeks are starting to accumulate. My gut hurts, my shoulders are tight, and my last three rides have been fun, but I have not been up to par. I mean I'm not stinkin' up the joint, but its almost like the passion to just rip is being kept down by the white man....wait, that's me.

Staffing at work is the primary culprit, and I honestly have NO IDEA what the hell we're gonna do after Dec 31st when the great state of AZ tries to enforce a no illegal alien policy. Tourism, construction, landscaping, restaurants, you name it - its gonna be f'd up for a long while.

Well - at least I did get in nearly 5 hours of singlespeed riding last weekend preceeded by 4 hours on the road. I'm outta here at 3pm today to de-stress.....of course the trade off is that I have to work from home tonight. It's worth it.

Happy f'n Tuesday

Friday, October 19, 2007


All you cycling fans out there know that DNS = Did not start. That was my status at the racquetball tourney last night. D had to work late, Lyza's soccer game ran over, and she had spelling words to study before Friday AM. Before I knew it, 8:00pm came and went and I wasn't playing. Ya know what? No big deal, because family comes first - and I'm not being cheeky with that comment. Fo' reals. Lyza passed her spelling test, and D keeps her job by showing up for a mandatory meeting. I still won the league, just not the tournament.

On a better note, I got in another 31 miles of outdoor riding this morning - that's 62 for the week with another 25-30 off road planned for tomorrow on the singlespeed. We had a warm spell blow through meaning 50's in the day and only 30's at night. Fall colors are peaked out right now, and I can't get enough of the Aspen trees changing to a luminescent yellow.

Wedding to attend tomorrow afternoon/evening, work Sunday morning (again), and then off for the rest of Sunday. Go Vikes - take the Cowboys to the house.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Supposed Former Beer Infatuation Junkie...

Yes Sheck, add Alanis to the list with Mimi, Aimee, and Posh

I am fully recovered beer snob. See there was a time when I only wanted a dark, imported, made by Monks, nearly unfiltered, full flavored brew with some hard to get rep and a unique bottle. I actually remember applauding a rant on some dude's website with the ridiculously overused cliche "life is too short to drink lame beer". Like those words haven't been uttered for nearly every high end product out there - or at least the well-marketed and positioned high end products. Well that was back in 1998, and I believe nearly 10 years later I am recovered.

A $1.99 25 ounce Tecate in a can looks just f'n great when I'm thirsty. How about a Fosters Lager in the oilcan! Say hell yeah to that! Really - I'll drink whatever is put in front of me especially if you're buying.

Wisdom, experience, and my pathetic habit of always embracing at least one thing that is socially 'cool' has taught me that my current infatuation with coffee will end within the next seven years when I'll be drinking microwaved water with a teaspoon of Folgers. Mmmmmmmm, sounds........just nasty now, but I am my parents and I just can't get around this......I don't even want to bring up the inevitable ventures into box wine, repeating the same stories, and slow driving.

Early start tomorrow - 6am at work, out at 3pm - off to soccer practice with Lyza, and then the club R-ball tournament. I haven't played in a week, but one thing is for sure. I'm well rested, and I'm pretty pissed off about not playing more - so I hope that helps. Everybody is gunning for me, and each match will be one game to 21 since we have so many players. One bad streak, and you're finished. I'm gonna win and if I don't I'll go down swinging/diving/swearing. I don't even want to think about losing, but if I do, I'm gonna fetch a cold MGD at happy hour prices and watch the remaining players whip up on each other.

Correction to that last post....

I raced for 5 hours and 15 minutes on Oct 4th - left everything I had on the course and placed well dammit. I guess the time has gone by fast since then, and I haven't done shit in recent memory other than slam a few balls into walls on Thursday nights. In the spirit of just that -not having done shit in 10 days - and the fact that I can't even look at my trainer, I ambled out the door at 8:30 this morning for a 47 degree road ride up to 9,300 feet where it was exactly 37 degrees.
I'm home, warmed up, and I finally feel chemically balanced/normal again. I think I was about to slit my wrists last night over a lack of activity. Racquetball doesn't count - I need to ride.

It's Grandparents Day at Lyza's school today, and since her GP's live in Minnesota - I'm gladly subbing so I don't have to go to work. With 6 day workweeks over the last month, I deserve a little midweek time off.


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I haven't raced since.....

September 23rd.

10 days of rest have me feeling antsy, but here I am on Tuesday night staring at my trainer and feeling a lot of push back from my brain. Thoughts like "Are you serious - you want to ride indoors in PLACE". "You've got to be kidding can't ride a mountain bike on that"......and finally "Yeah right, you've got about as much self-motivation to ride that as a jobless fat-fu*k welfare recipient has of applying for a job at Hardees". Hardees, by the way, just rolled out a new Breakfast Burrito that has over 920 calories and 60 grams of saturated fat. The best quote ever from the Hardees PR clown is this:

"It makes the big country breakfast portable". The second best quote is from a critic who calls Hardees high calorie food items "Food Porn". I thought THAT mushroom was food porn.

So, where was I? I'm not sure, but I sure as hell am not hungry for mushrooms.

Top 5 shallow middle-class issues I'm facing right now:
5) I hate my trainer
4) My fantasy football team is 2-4
3) I'm out of orange juice for tomorrow morning
2) I might have to stop for gas on the way to work
1) I feel the urge to delve more deeply in Barack Obama's platform, and to learn more about Fred Thompson's decision not to campaign more aggressively in Iowa this week

time for bed

Monday, October 15, 2007

This was probably one of the first weekends where I was actually GLAD to get to Sunday afternoon......wiped out and ready for a beer or two. Saturday morning we were up at the crack of ass to act as roving photographers for the Soulstice Trail Run. D was racing the short course (around 6.5 miles), and Lyza and I decided to hop on our bikes and intercept her at various points for photo ops. Well, as it usually goes with a 6-year old, plans changed.

First, it was cold - around 35 degrees - so we didn't want to ride that fast. Second - literally 100 yards in "I have to pee Dad". So down with the pants, legs up on a log, and unload about a liter of Apple juice. That cut us down to one intercept point, and we were waiting patiently when the leaders ripped through. After the top 3 women, and the top 10 men I was thinking D would roll through in another 5-10 minutes. WRONG> here she comes ripping down the trail at max effort. We get a quick photo - scream "GO D - THROW IT DOWN" and we hop on our bikes hell bent for the finish line. We roll in about 2 minutes before she does, and get the camera out in time to get her and some dude in a green shirt who couldn't catch her at the line. She got 4th overall, and 3rd in her age group (tough age group)......another trophy for the mantle at home!

Quick ride home, and Lyza and I are off to Brownies - yes, Dads do Brownies now. We went to an animal shelter which was actually a really cool field trip. Get back - lunch - day over, right? WRONG. D and I quick change for a wedding up at the Snowbowl....babysitter for Lyza. Home and CRASH out around 10pm.

Sunday - more of the same, and that's why I was pretty psyched to hit Sunday evening with nothing 'to do'.

This week brings the October Racquetball Tourney on Thursday night. I guess I'm seeded #1, which has 'letdown' written all over it. Nice confidence, huh......I'll probably be ready to play the likes of Prick Paul, Kaotic Keith, Timid Tim, College Mike, Sponsored Chris, and Mitch the Bitch come Thursday, but I can't even think about that right now. MUST GET ON THE TRAINER and ride some miles as I have a 50 miler coming up on 11/3.

Here it is, Tuesday morning already.....better get hoppin.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Rudy Guiliani....

is creating quite a stir within the ranks of the religious-based conservatives. He's leading the Republican polls (at around 30%), yet, many of the decision makers in the GOP would consider splitting the Republican vote to ensure he doesn't get in office. In short, they are more afraid of Guiliani than Hillary Clinton.


Abortion and family values. See the religious right is in no way shape or form going to support a pro-choice candidate who is thrice married. Because the religious right is so influential on the GOP nominee, Guiliani might be stonewalled by his own party. It's firghtening to note that the right wing GOP leaders and constituents would forego their position in the White House due to ONE issue that has no political bearing on the success/security of this nation.

If you asked a GOP member today what Guilini's position is on abortion, more than 70% assume he's pro-life. Wait 'till the shit hits the fan this winter when GOP voters realize he is not aligned with the right.

Ross Perot's candidacy greatly helped the Clintons get into the White House, and that Goddamn Ralph Nader STOLE the election from Al Gore in 2000. However - Guiliani is the type of candidate who could capture a lot of independent votes and DEM votes as well. All I'm sayin' is if anyone can overcome the stranglehold of his/her party it might be RUDY.

Fun stuff - I can't wait 'till 2008!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Nice move by Tubby the Chunk Monkey above...

Lyza and I once had to pull a fat little Navajo kid out of a swing at the park - you know - the kind of semi-closed seat that kids have to slide their legs into. Well little Chief Eatalot couldn't get out. He was all screaming and sh*t. Pretty funny once he was out of there. I thought for sure we were callin' the Fire Dept. on that one.

Last Thursday I played Placid Paul in racquetball, but the dude turns out to be A-hole Martyr Paul. I know....there's no ring to it, and I've been trying to come up with a name for him all week. Prick Paul....I dunno. What I wanted to do was PELT Paul with a shot to the back of the leg, but I took the high road and played fair and square. I have something for Paul next time we play though. It's blue, it says PENN on it, and if I hit it solid it will hit his skin at 130mph. F*cker.

I've decided to prolong the cycling season simply because I hate going to the gym. There is a 50 mile marathon at an easy desert course a la Old Pueblo in Phoenix on 11/3. 9am start time - means warmth....., fast crushed granite, I couldn't imagine being out there for more than 4 hours max. Actually, by the time this is over, there are two events in December down in the Valley of the Scum that is Phoenix that will carry the 'season' into 2008 just in time for 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo on President's Day Weekend in Tucson. Bring on the 7 BITCHES of Old Pueblo. 4-man team this year, with a team chef too. No shit.

Dad is getting his Prostate chopped today....ouch. My non-denominational, agnostic-slanted, non-conformist, borderline anti-any established religion prayers are with him. I hope they count for something. Good thing he has his Minister visiting the hospital 'cause I'm leavin' him a little short in the spiritual department. With all seriousness - I hope that surgeon got the fucking cancer out of him. Good riddance to it and a speedy recovery Dad.


Sunday, October 7, 2007

That' a Wrap Folks....on the 2007 cycling season
My above listed spons.....ok, well they aren't sponsors because they don't exactly give me their stuff. I have to buy it like everybody else. However, without this gear, I would never have pulled off a solid finish in the Tour of the White Mountains yesterday. 70 racers in our open class event made it even that much sweeter. Pros/Singlespeeders/old guys/women...I love open class racing. No age groups - its just the first one across the line wins goddammit! It was a sunny day, a great, technically challenging course, and as always.....a sufferfest from the word GOOOOOOOOOOOO!
The gun went off at 7:15am at Thunderhorse Ranch in Pine Top, AZ. It was a warm enough day - temps in the 50's - but we had sustained winds of 25mph with consistent 40 mph gusts. I looked back just before the start and realized we had a pretty big field. I was in the 3rd row hoping for a top 10 finish.
Right out of the gate, I was 10th - and our lead group picked up a quick 30 second gap on the rest of the I knew it was my job at that point to just not get passed. Only 51 miles to go to the finish line. The first several miles were forest roads designed to separate the field. It worked. I got in a paceline of guys to help cut the wind, and did my share of pulls before dropping two guys and taking a dig for the lead group of 7 - I never did make the bridge up to them, but as soon as I about blew from the effort we turned onto the singletrack for the next 40 miles and I was able to settle into a good pace. The climbing was moderate - 4,500 feet over the 51 miles so it was just a matter of keeping yourself focused.
There was a staggered start - and the 42/35 mile participants started after us, and took a shortcut that got them in front of our group.....meaning that I all of a sudden rode up on what felt like 100 intermediate-level riders, but they were all cool and were willing to let us pass them without issue. It was great psychologically - as I always had someone ahead that I was trying to catch. Well - I blew past the first 3 aid stations and was feeling great until 2:45 minutes into the race when my legs and lungs just seemed to lose their ability to hold the pace I was riding....I had a couple of bars and gels, and kinda limped into aid station #4 - thankfully helped by a long downhill section about 30 minutes after I started feeling the fatigue. 15 miles left, or so we were told. I ate cheese/gatorade/candy and it tasted sooooooooo good........but suddenly not good as I watched a guy in my class zip by the aid station at full throttle.
FUCK! Back on the bike hell bent to catch him. I knew I was close to top 10 and didn't want to lose that standing. I went a little too hard, and ended up having to stop for 30 seconds to work a cramp out of my right hamstring. It went away since I caught it right away and after some suffering for 1/2 hour, I rolled up on him and we rode together on a long stretch of the 7 miles of fire roads to the ranch. I could feel him laboring, so I punched it once and he sat on my wheel. I punched it twice, and gapped him by about 7 seconds. I did one final big-ring push out of the saddle and he disappeared behind me. I kept my effort at close to 85% of max and survived a hellish headwind to the line. 5 hours 15 minutes - good enough for 9th place. I was just psyched! Back in May I raced in a simlar category at the Whiskey 50 and placed a middling 64th out of 100. This was vindication for that race. I left everything I had in my yesterday on the trails and although I didn't get on the podium, it felt great to know I really accomplished something I had been trying to all year: Riding fast for 5-6 hours, having the awareness to not bonk, and having a strong finishing kick. I know I didn't get on the podium, and that would be a monumental achievement for me in Open Class racing. I guess I'll always have something to shoot for, that's for sure.
Go Vikes!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

I yanked this out of the garage last night, actually, mine is the 2007 model which isn't as 'pimped out' as this one. Check it out - Fox RL80 fork, and a better parts spec for just another $200......well worth it if you don't have one.

Anyway - I hit the trail for 1.5 hours. My legs felt like bark-beetle infested logs with NO power or snap. Roughly calculated, I think I have 1,700 miles of wear on my legs over the last 9 months, and I think I need a break. With a 51 mile race schedule in 3 days, I better just rest for a while - HAMMER on Saturday knowing its the last hard effort until Old Pueblo in February, and enjoy the upcoming winter. Time to lift weights, maybe trail run, maybe even a yoga class or two, hit the indoor trainer to keep some cardio fitness.......yuck - all of that makes me wanna puke right now.

F'n A - I have some serious sh*tburgers to eat with regards to Lyza and her issues at school. One thing for sure, she sure keeps me on my toes.

Josh - what am I gonna do with that FULL CARBON Epic frame?

Monday, October 1, 2007

The neo-conservatives in this country are frightening. I'm more afraid of them STARTING a war with Iran than I am of this little dude from Iran who just talks trash about the 'fake holocaust' and the assertion that there are 'no homosexuals in Iran'......too funny really. For a guy who has no power, he sure has our bible thumpin, bad suit wearin conservatives nervous. Give this guy a mic and let him do standup!

Week ahead..

This is on 10/6. I have not been riding much due to the short days, and mucho worko. But - this is kinda the finale for the least for competitive events anyway. Truth be told, I'm kinda ready to put a capper on 2007 alltogether. 1-51 mile race and it's pretty much closed for business. It's been a great year.....A second place finish + cash, no major mechanical issues to pay for, and no injuries other than fatigue from time to time. Oh yeah - and that sweet S-Works frame from the raffle.

The weekend was a blur. Work, play - a pretty good mix of the two. Brett Favre schooled the Vikes. It's great to see Favre playing with such fortitude and fun even if he has to paste the Vikes.

Lyza and D continue to rock my small world.


Thursday, September 27, 2007


I placed a stellar 19th out of 27 Cat 5 men. I'm a punk hillclimber. Dana was 4th of 7 women in Cat 4.

Like it matters.....

I'm a geek. I traded 7 players on my fantasy football roster this week.

Like it matters.....

Racquetball tonight against College Mike and Loud Mouth Mike. Bof of 'em (Hey Vito) are good. I've lost to bof, and beaten 'em bof too. Should be a good night on the courts.

Have you ever ground up pinon coffee beans straight from the Country of New Mexico (there's no way its a state - have ya been there before?). This sh*t is just fantastic. Smoky, full-flavored espresso at its finest. Hell, I'll even drive there to get more.

Coffee and Racquetball.....they matter

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Kid at School Part Two

1.) The cops have followed up about as well as FEMA with regards to our report. Whatever.
2.) We asked that the kid be allowed to stay in the same class - what he did was probably nothing more than mimicking something he saw on some sh*t TV program or movie.
3.) Counseling session for me and the Ex on Friday - to discuss this stuff and Squirty going back and forth between houses as seamlessly as possible.

Random Shallow Thoughts

1.) I have around 100 days until I'm due for a cherry-poppin' "backside" exam - yup, the first one. Since my Pops is going in for prostate surgery next month, I best get inspected.
2.) I'm still thinking about building up that carbon Specialized Epic frame. I'll have to donate plasma for the extra money to do it, but.....
3.) When I was unintentionally listening to Nelly Furtado last night, I reminisced about the show Star Search - and how great of a talent Alanis Morissette was when she was 16.
4.) Have you ever wanted to be a cop?
5.) I would love to hear why one would not vote for Hillary Clinton in 2008. If she gets her legitimate health care plan rolling - there's no stopping her.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Google Maps said that Safford, AZ was 308 miles from my door - equivalent to 5 hours and 8 minutes. We left Flagstaff on Saturday in a hurricane. Sheets of rain, hydroplaning, the whole 9 yards. I have to give a big thanks to Subaru for making a pretty solid car in the Forester. We had 4 people, 4 bikes, gear and it was a solid ride. Numerous construction issues brought us to the east side of Phoenix around 6:30pm and we were starving. We fleeced a gas station of napkins, and plasticware and made burritos in the parking lot as we had the ingredients in the parking lot. We had to send Dana in to heat them up, as Gary had already been kicked out of the store once for "you take too much napkin".

Back in the car, and into mining country - Mormon country - Crystal Methe country....Globe/Miami, and finally to Safford around 10:00pm....6 1/2 hours later. We crashed at a little Best Western, to the sweet feeling of stagnant, humid, warm air, and highway noise. Truckers seemed to be playing games as they came through to pick up their methe fixes - laying on their horns HARD all the way down the main drag. I slept for sh*t, and woke up at 5:15am to the sound of Gary's cell phone alarm. Usually I can't sleep before a big race, but believe me - the competition was above my league so I was not stressing about the ride.

We rolled over to the start/staging area in plenty of time, get the numbers, warm up on the rollers, over to the line - National anthem, and then this goofy prayer by the race organizer. There were 150+ racers that I would imagine represented a lot of religions and this guy was spouting off about thanking God and Jesus. Maybe I'm just growing tired of this stuff - but I couldn't wait to race and hear him ZIP his zealous piehole.

The organizer sounded the airhorn - and we were off. Let me tell ya a little bit about this field. It is LOADED with the top road climbers in the state. Who else would show up for a 5,600 foot climb over 20 miles? These people have powertaps, uber-expensive bikes, and a some pretty good fitness Well - I know of two people, me and Dana, who probably didn't train properly for this. I have been riding mountain bikes all summer, so I felt like I could at least compete. Dana rode MAYBE 2x a week for a month prior figuring it would be similar to Mount Lemmon in Tucson. The mood at the line was unlike any MTB race I've been at. Ego-centric, not friendly, and since it was a mass start - everyone was trying to figure out who they were competing against.

Ok, GO!

Instantly, D and I were in the back 3rd of the pack - where we belonged. I was doing the pacemaking for us as we agreed. The Goal was for me to work the pitches of 4% and less, and for her to pace us when it got steep. I had to fight to keep us at the front of the back 1/3, and I was contunially pushing 173 on the ol' heart rate monitor. That's a lof of effort for me, and I was convinced for the first 4 miles that my HR was off by 10 beats per minute. Yeah - was me burying myself to keep us in the race. I kept this up for 4 miles until we hit a 10% pitch.

I gunned it since I could see that it would end in 1/4 mile, and Dana followed. I hit 180 on the HR and had to slow down - but we dropped about 20 people there and never saw them again. We then set a pace that brought me back down a bit and hung on for the next 6 miles to the 1/2 way point. Psychologically I was breaking down, and then the sun broke through the clouds and it got for me at least. I fell about 50 yards behind D and sat there for 3 more miles until I recovered. I paced back up to her and we were at mile 13 - thinking in my head - 'how the f*ck am I gonna make it to mile 20 without slowing down significantly'. Just then, it was as if my body stabilized, and my HR dropped to a very comfortable 168. We rode at this pace for another 2 miles (mile 15) - and hit intense fog, and the top finishers were already riding DOWN. It didn't seem logical - we weren't going that slow. Turns out we see the race director at the next switchback and he screams: "Race ends in 1K! Too much fog and hail!" Well, D is gassed, and she doesn't have a kick. I have some extra, but we couldn't see a soul in front of us, or behind us so I didn't sprint for the line - instead, we upped the tempo a notch and rode across the line together in 1 hour, 51 minutes.

We grapped the gear we sent up with the support vehicle (leg warmers, winter riding jackets, full-fingered gloves, earbands) and took off for the bottom as the snow and hail was coming down. It was a long ride down on wet roads for 12 miles - as the storm had just followed us up the mountain.

At the awards ceremony in Methe-ville, USA - we realized just how average we were compared to the best climbers in the State. The winning Pro 1,2 men were coming in around 1 hour and 15 minutes. Two things were inspiring though:

1.) There were a lot of men riding with us that were in their 50's and even 60's. It's great to know that if I'm dedicated, I can ride well into my geriatric years. And ride well, too.
2.) D. She trained for sh*t, and kept pace with the women in her category - placing 4th and only 3 minutes out of first in the Women's Cat 4. The chick is a solid rider, and I couldn't have felt any better about riding with her the whole way (except for that 3 mile stretch where I was DYING and hanging on 50 yards back). If she trained for this thing, I would not have been riding with her as she would have put 5 minutes into me easily.

For the record, I finished 12th out of 15 Cat 5 men......and that is one reason I'm pumped for the Epic Rides Tour of the White Mountains in 2 weeks. It's on mountain bikes - 51 miles of singletrack, and I know I can hit the top 15 in the Mens division if I come to play. Long Live the Mountain Bike, and screw the skinny tires until maybe next spring.

Friday, September 21, 2007

A F*cked up Friday

1) One of Squirty's classmates has been kissing her, and GOT his hand in her pants during class - no kidding. Intervention on Monday with school counselors - questioning, the whole f*cking 9 yards. The kid is 6.....I can't punch him in the face, but I can punch his Dad.
2) Racing this weekend kinda seems irrelevant right now. Like I give a f*ck? But - life goes on, and nothing can happen between now and Monday. Gary recommended that I put a 27 tooth cog on the back. I've never ridden anything other than an 11-23 with a 39/53 up front. I'll try it tomorrow as a test since he described the climb as Looooong and steep.
3) I'm dyin' on the vine right now - just feeling flat, tired, and I'm about as exciting as watching the Twins play baseball at 15 games out of first with 10 to go. WHATEVER.
4) Racquetball was a success last night from a scoring perspective. I'm getting better and am dominating the league right now. It continues to be the best mental release and inside my head, I'm just screaming at the ball trying to crush it into the wall. I don't think I'm very fun to play, but I don't really give a sh*t. I want to win and leave a wake behind me of dejected players. F*ck em.

I'll snap out of it. Its just that you never know when you get to start eatin' shitburgers. I'm at the White Castle of shitburgers right now - just pumpin' down a dozen at a time.....sliders.


Thursday, September 20, 2007

How do you get one of those if you're 100% whitebread?

I'm feeling about as flat as can be right now. Maybe its because I'm supposed to be resting this week for the imminent max effort coming on Sunday morning. I have a hard time resting - I want to go play. I know its good for my legs, but I need to get some exercise in. Good thing its Thursday night - racquetball will help get me fired up again.

This has been one of those super-tiring weeks. Lyza had a bad night on Monday - up all night - worried about me going down to Tucson for work. Top that off with just regular day to day stress and you get two things:

1) I fell asleep driving yesterday - split second - but enough to make me pull over and sleep for 10 minutes.

2) I also fell asleep watching Lyza at her tennis lesson last night. She busted me on it too - I was out for maybe a minute and I wake up to her laughing down on the court.

Narcolepsy? Probably - I can fall asleep in 2.2 seconds when I'm whipped.

OK - r-ball tonight, an easy 20 mile road bike ride tomorrow morning, and the same thing on Saturday Am in preparation for the race. We have a 5 hour 1-way drive to Safford, AZ - so it'll be a long Sunday. Hey - its better than sittin' on my ass and watching the Vikings make a traveshamockery out of the NFL.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Fish -

Is that you drivin' Mommy's car?

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Time has a great....

article on the spouses of the major contenders for the 2008 election. If you're a John Edwards person, his wife is a smokin' gun for several reasons. She's whip-smart, she has stage IV breast cancer with a life expectancy of less than 5 years - making her in the opinion of most strategists - untouchable. How can you rip her? If you do - you are an ass, and she is confident and smart enough to get right in your face.

I guess the point is that these spouses are strong - including Mr. Clinton - possibly the "First Laddie" of the White House. To me, the Clinton's deserve their position as #1/#1 - the poll leaders in the Dem polls, and the overall poll leaders of all candidates.

Now if you're casting your vote for Prez based on the hottest spouse, then you have to lean towards John McCain - his wife Cindy McCain is it if you like the "cougar" look. She's blond, fit, rich, and smart. If you have jungle fever then ya best choose Obama's wife Michelle - although she might not be 'black enough', like Obama's critics say of him.

I don't even care who wins the Republican ticket, so we'll keep the discussion on this blog geared towards the interesting and talent-laden Dem side. Cindy's front runner anyway.

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Girls

A good weekend, a great hike, just kickin' back in the late summer temps.

Funniest things I read tonight:
1.) The pathetic "questioning" by the House of Gen. Petreus. Talk about a guy being hung out to dry by Bush.
2.) The "feud" between Kanye West and 50 Cent.
3.) The Vikings offense
4.) The lyrics to Cheeseburger's song "Do You Remember" - check these guys out if you haven't yet. They'll wake your ass up if you're draggin it to the starting line.
5.) Vito's assessment of the Chicago Bears and how it relates to him banging a South American Chick. Vito is ALWAYS on hand with a good story.

Good Night Biyotches...
So much for the Vikings

It was a good weekend, with virtually no riding or anything going on other than working a bit on Saturday, and hanging out with the Family on Sunday. The Vikings do suck, and I don't even know why I give a sh*t about them anymore.

Work is hectic - people out on vaca, people out sick, and I have a big hill to climb this coming Saturday. I'll find time to ride tomorrow and Wednesday as a final tune up before climbing the monster. Here are the stats:

Mount Graham / Safford AZ
20 mile climb
Base elev: 3,500 feet
Top: 9,300 feet
Gradient: Average of around 6% or so

It'll be 80+ at the bottom, and around 65 at the top.

Nothing brutal, but definately a Category 1 Tour de France climb - minus the drugs. Does weed count? Just kidding, but it might take the edge off this week thinking about the race. Maybe I'll get some for 'medicinal' purposes.

OK - back to the sawmill.

Friday, September 14, 2007

It was a good night at the courts

Timid Tim has developed a little bit of a game, and wasn't so timid. But he went down like Lindsey Lohan on a traffic cop. Then I played Ken I have the look of a potential serial killer. You should see this guy's face - he could either smile and laugh, or look like he'll rape your wife, kill your kids, and keep your dog. I'm gonna keep my distance, and NEVER hit him with the ball. He has a good game, but not a lot of fitness, so he went down swingin'. Then it was on to Kaotic Kevin - which is really an acronym. He's calm, cool, and has a lot of control. We played twice, and I wasted him the first time, and we battled to 15-13 the last game - I got him at the wire. It was a great match - and I can't wait to play this guy again.

The Lowly Detroit Lions play the Vikes this weekend. Fish - if you're reading this, Adrian Peterson will WRECK your Lions this weekend. Vikes....goin 2-0 baby.

I'm ready for Friday evening. For the weekend ya know........


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Sub 40

For the first time, I comfortably finished climbing Snowbowl road in under 40 minutes. 39:15 to be exact, with no one chasing me, and no one in front of me. 6.2 miles, 7,000 feet at the start line to 9,000 feet at the top. OK - so I'm pretty pumped about it, but then I remember the reality of my so called 'achievement'.

In last year's race to the top, the winner of the Pro,1,2 category demolished the climb in 26:34. He had enough time to take of the chamois, drink an Iced Tea, give an interview, kiss his wife and tell her about the climb, and load his bike to go home.......and then I would have crossed the line. Good thing I'm a Hotel Manager because I sure ain't gonna make a living climbing Snowbowl.

Enjoy your Thursday. Racquetball tonight against Fat F*ck Fred, and Tough Mike. At least I have one good match to look forward to.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The next 11 days

I'm not really nervous yet about the state championship hill climb because although I'm entered in the Cat 4 men, I'm not racing for me. C'mon - I wouldn't have a chance of placing in the top 10 of my category. I'm too slow which is caused by not riding my road bike as much as I could, and the fact that I'm 190+ pounds. The dudes who win this race are little dudes who climb like gondolas in Vail.

The goal is to get D on the podium of the Women's 4. We have been training, and we worked our tails off on a 50 mile loop last weekend featuring a 16 mile climb - not really high elevation though. I'm still recovering from that ride. My job next weekend is to hang on to D's wheel on the steeps - which is not easy for me, and then step up and provide a draft for her on the flatter sections. Hopefully, with a little luck, she will be on that podium.

Our canceled vacation has allowed the priviledge of working this week - that's just f'n great. It has also allowed me to only work 1/2 days so we have spent time looking at real estate for my Uncle to buy. I hope we can get him moved in to Flagstaff in the next 6 months. It would be great to have him around more. He's a twitchy SOB, but he's a blast to be around.

We may have an update tonight on a condo about 2 miles from my front door. If so - pictures will follow tomorrow.

Monday, September 10, 2007

HAVASUPAI?'s where I ended up on Sunday. In Hell. Yup, that's Phoenix, and we took my Dad back there to get him on a plane home. He wasn't feeling all that good, so we canceled the trip. Hey - curveballs come at ya all the time. It's how you make the adjustment.

Adjustments - oh yeah. We hit the Mandalay Tea Room for some tofu scramble plates and organic French Pressed Coffee. Then, off to Gameworks for 2 hours of airhockey and driving games. Good times.

So, we made the most of it. I did go to work today, but I cut out early since it was a vacation day. I got in 2.5 hours of climbing, and 45 minutes of descending on the mountain bike. It could not have been a better afternoon.

Friday, September 7, 2007

So I look at the racquetball leage schedule last night and.....

who do I draw? Chris G (a 20 year old college kid who is sponsored by Ektelon), and some dude who ripped both of his hammies about a month back...."some dude" ended up a no-show.

So Chris G plays a match before me against a stiff named Timid Tim. He's a nice guy, looks like Dave Stout, but at least Stout can hit a jumper from 20 with a hand in his face. Timid Tim lasted all of 15 minutes with Chris G. I was cold on the couch waiting to play Chris G - 2 minute warm-up, and we are off.

He waxes me 15-4 in the first game. I was cold, but not that cold. He just surprised me with his power, and it took me until the last 5 minutes of the game to catch on to his strategy. Next game - I pegged it early and took him 15-4. Primarily, I just took advantage of any marginal shot he made, and I got on a good roll. So we're standing by the drinking fountain, and I says to the guy I says "So this game is to 11, right?" He says "yeah..11". I say "Sh*t....I don't do well in short games as I have a hard time getting my engine running". It was a little mental warfare, but it worked. I turned on the gas early - got out to an 8-2 lead, and took him 11-5. We talked after, and I was thinking he had been playing since he was 16.....played a lot of tourneys, been sponsored for a few years etc etc etc. Nope. The f*cker picked up a racquet 9 months ago playing with his buddy on outdoor cement courts in Phoenix. Played in 3 tourneys this summer, and moved to Flagstaff in August. He got sponsored after his 3rd tourney which he won.

He was three, f*cking 3, when I graduated from college. I have been playing competitively for 21 years, and we are at about the same level. I wanted to pull a Tanya Harding on his left knee so I don't have to play him in the tournament in 5 weeks. The bright side, is that I can still play with these dudes. The dark side is I'm absolutely positively as good as I will get at this sport. Sure, I may pick up some new shots but the trade off is that I'm physically declining. I felt it getting out of bed this morning.

After one more match with Monster Mike - we split the match - I was ready for the garbage. Home, shower, bed.....done.

I'll be at Havasu Falls Sunday through Wednesday. Pics to follow and surely some good stories.


Thursday, September 6, 2007

Everything you never wanted to know....

Happy Thursday............note that I didn't publish this on Hump Day.
Sports, Drugs & Morals?

Every cyclist I know is all up in arms over the fact that another NFL player was caught using HGH (That's Human Growth Hormone Mom), and he only got a 4-game suspension. Rodney Harrison is the guy, and he's a long-time veteran of the New England Patriots. The point is that if this had happened to a pro cyclist, it would have meant:
A) You get sacked (That's FIRED Mom)
B) Your income is gone
C) You get a 2-year ban

Seems like we have a little discrepancy when people say that Cycling is the 'dirtiest sport'. 'Roids and HGH are rampant if the NFL and have been for 20 years, don't let the number of positive tests fool you into thinking that there is little substance abuse in America's #1 game.

Here's the moral dilemma: Rodney Harrison is a highly respected player because he's been around a long time, he plays with reckless abandon, and he was probably trying to squeeze another year or two out of his body before he will inevatibly be replaced by a younger player. He knows his earning power is almost gone at the pro level, and he was willing to risk a 4-game suspension on drugs that would prolong his career. I can see both sides of this issue, but, cheating is cheating. I learned that from an Ex-wife who created a moral dilemma to justify her actions. I think, for Rodney, its about ego/pride and money. Rodney was just coming off a broken leg, he's in his late 30's and he just had to come back to prove to himself and everyone that he's still "THE MAN" and the fat payday helped justify the sacrifice he had to make.

Hey - it's the NFL where cartoon-like crashes are on ESPN within minutes of their occurence, where violence is praised, and where a sh*tload of money is bet every week. I don't think anything will change anytime soon.

Racquetball tonight, it's the first week of the fall league. We have 6 weeks of round robin play followed by the Tourney. I got my new racquet, and I am ready to play. 3 matches tonight followed by a sprint home to see the girls before bedtime. I'm ready for a stress reliever - work has been flat, revenues are stagnant, and we're all ready for a change in business levels.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Freaks & Geeks

The 11th Annual fantasy football draft was yesterday in scenic Lake Montezuma, AZ - at the local golf course. Some of the dudes in our league hit the sticks before the draft, and I have to say that it's probably one of the only golf courses in AZ where you see more mullets than polo-shirt wearin' cropped cut fat guys. I skipped the golf, as I usually do and rolled in for the draft at 1:30. It's always a good time - catching up with guys I only see once a year. This whole debacle started back in 1996 and I like it because its pretty much stayed the same since. We drink beer, talk smack, and overall, take it about as serious as we should. Meaning its fun to talk about on Sundays and every now and then we get into a good trashtalk session online about it.

I woke up this mornin' around 5:45 and was on the singlespeed by 6:05. Just so you know, the sun rises now about 6:10am. We really are losing light - and it was on the edge of cold - around 51 degrees. I climbed for 5 miles up Mount Elden's 2000' gain in my 32 x 18. Plenty of work for a Monday morning. Flip it - and down "endo trail" back home. No endo's today - thankfully.

Now - off to the pool with Squirty. September is here, and I can feel the days getting shorter and the temps falling. It'll be 68 for a high on Thursday with lows in the 40's. Damn.....summer went fast.

Saturday, September 1, 2007


So after dinner last night it was raining, but the dogs had not been out. D, Squirty and me hit the pavement for a long loop around the 'hood. About as 'hood' as it gets in Flagstaff is our quirky neighborhood of dumpy rentals, nice single family homes, condos, apartments with 90% of the population being white folk or Latinos. Not exactly a hood, but its our hood. So anyway, off we go, and about 1/4 of the way through, Lyza pulls the "I have to pee" card. We hit the woods, she takes care of business, and we're on our way. It has to be her favorite place to go to the bathroom. I think she'll be a good camper since I have yet to hear her say "ohhhh - gross, I want a toilet". So we amble on, and deep inside my lower abdomen grumbles - a lot. That transmits to my brain quickly....I'm 1/2 mile from home and if I don't find a bathroom ASAP its gonna be bad. I toss the dog leash to Lyza who stays with D - they are laughing as I take off down the road for home.

The problem is - that I can't run. I get hives on my legs if I have not been regularly running. It itches worse than you can imagine, and I have to stop and walk. So I'm racewalking the 1/2 mile home trying to tell the ol' sphincter that I'm not even close and to hold the dam - HOLD THE LINE BOYS - HOLD THE LINE!!! Says commander Shitski. Well the garage appears, I open it and sprint the final 50 feet to porcelain heaven. Let's just say it was as if I dumped a bucket of mopwater into the toilet. And then - it was over. WHEW. Cleaned the toilet, had a nice relaxing night after dropping 4 pounds of water weight, and slept like a baby.

I remember not making it once when I was in 4th grade. That has stuck with me as vividly as any of the other life changing events I have had in 39 years.

Have a nice weekend

Thursday, August 30, 2007

OK - I thought the astronaut love triangle that included diapers, surgial tubing, and garbage bags was the story of the year....well, it still is. This guy though, is right up there. I have to say there is nothing funnier than a self-proclaimed Right Winger who has voted down nearly every gay-rights initiative is now feeling the pressure to tell us "I'm not gay". Not that there's anything wrong with that of course.

I just want to say though, that this opened a whole new perspective for me, as I never knew the 'call signs', or the 'little signals' that you should use in mens restrooms to get your very own prison pounding. Did you see the cop who busted him? Talk about your sweet little Peter Pan looking face. You have to believe he was straight out of the Academy when Lieutenant Hard Ass looks at him and says "Johnson - you're on gay watch at the Minneapolis Airport restrooms. I need you to really dive into this, get to know these a**clowns, and take 'em down". So this poor cop gets to smell a ton of kids dropped off at the pool all day, while making himself look "available" so he can capture pervs? He should get a fat salary for that job.

Back to our esteemed public servant from Idaho. Hey - it happens in both parties - but there's nothing I like seeing more than a crusty conservative going down by committing acts that he steadfastly condemned. Isn't it ironic Alanis Morissette that he essentially voted down initiatives for his gay-self?

Got the Scalpel out on a 1.5 hour ride last night. We're losing daylight fast unfortunately. The bike feels like an extension of me right now, tuned and dialed in. Unfortunately I have to abandon it for 3 weeks to get ready for a road race on 9/23. The new frame is likely sold to a friend on my racing team. Bye bye Epic - it was nice having you on the stand in my garage.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A Chill Tuesday

A huge thanks to E-Force...for mailing me a brand new Lethal 175 after I mailed it in to them in sadder shape than this....That's Lance Brigg's Lamborghini BTW. E-Force has always been great about replacing broken rackets, but for them to send me a free one when the left side of the frame was crushed, well that's just great customer service. Racquetball starts again in 2 weeks and I'm now ready to play again.

I went to a very complex immigration seminar today. Arizona has to be the most ridiculous state with regards to the legislation that was passed this year. Basically, if you are tan and you work in the service industry, ag, construction, mining etc....then pack your bags. You'll be profiled as illegal - and for crissakes....employers are ON THE HOOK to lose their business license after a second violation. I hope the Feds pass some more reasonable sh*t soon. Otherwise, our guest workers in this state will move to New Mexico and California and I'll be paying some methe addict $27/hour to clean toilets. Sh*t (pardon the pun), maybe I'll take that job.

Road ride tomorrow morning @ 5:30am up Snowbowl and then in to work....I got the following on the Fall agenda. #1 will be a bitch. 20 miles, 5500 feet of vertical.