Friday, February 29, 2008

Another hour of BIKRAM BIKING on the rollers last night. No mirages or strange thoughts though. I think I'm getting used to the heat. It was a good session - I think I am getting used to this which is frightening.

House is clean
Dog is fed
D arrives tonight for the weekend - it's been 3 weeks since she's been home. Of course, I have to go to PHX for a 40th B-day party for my ol' college roommate in PHX on Saturday night....I wouldn't miss this chance to roast his ass though. Happy 40th Buckland. I know you don't read this because you can't find "the internets".

Got a 50 miler planned in Phoenix in Sunday. It'll be in the low 80's. Yeah baby...

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

About an hour into my ride on the rollers last night, I think I started to overheat. For a moment, I was competing in the lead group of the 40+ division at the Tour de Gila. Imagining duking it out with the fastest masters guys in the state, and taking the crit at the line. When I faded back into my world of kids, a full-time job, marginal talent, and the fact that I inadvertantly closed the door to the office where my rollers were set up - I realized I was in a 90 degree room, with a floor full o' sweat, and an earphone that was so doused with moisture that I missed C.C. Deville's guitar solo on some random song from Poison. It was probably one of the best roller sessions I have had in years with an average cadence of 92, and a lower than expected heart rate.

My core workout after consisted of eating two pop-tarts (shut the f*ck up - at least they were organic), and slugging a 16oz glass of OJ. There's some core work for ya....then off to sleep so I could wake up starving and engulf a mixing bowl of cereal and bananas. That's how I eat - always setting up for the next meal.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Remember when…

You were nine or so years old and you thought you locked your sister in the attic, turning you head confidently the other way, strutting to your success in making her cry only to feel the THUD of a hard object on the back of your head after she scratched her way out and snuck up on you for revenge?

Don’t think Hill is out of this DEM race yet….

She’s tough, she has connections, she’s funded, and if you back her or her husband into a corner they will come out brawling. You would think that Conservatives would be launching their legions of war-supporting, bible belting, gas consuming supporters (I’m sorry – did I stereotype a bit there?) to effectively campaign FOR Clinton in Ohio – trying to get DEM voters to the polls in her favor. Not because they hate McCain, although many of the do – but because Obama will kick McCain’s ass in a general election. Unless Obama gets shot in the process. Seriously, if you think racism isn’t still a deep rooted character trait in some sections of this country then you’re giving the Good Ol’ US of A way too much credit. If I were Obama I’d stay away from grassy knolls and 5-story school buildings to my right side. There’s a reason he has more security than Dubya. I think I would go ballistic (pardon the pun) if he were clipped – he’s a great man.

OK, back to Hill. She’s pulling out all the stops in Ohio and capitalizing on Obama’s tired rhetoric slowly but surely. I don’t know if she can pull it off, but she’ll go down swinging like my sister after being “locked” in the attic.

Have you seen this?:

and then the payback:

Monday, February 25, 2008

Silent Sunday

On the north side of South Mountain (I know that sounds f*cked up) we toured past an interesting area of Phoenix where new money has quashed any semblance of what used to be a borderline slum. Many poor homeowners have sold their houses/land – prime real estate that is elevated above the valley floor so you have great views of Phoenix (that’s an oxymoron in itself) – to make room for spec home builders/developers who “scrape” the old homes and have built up $400K - $750K plus track homes. There are a lot of holdouts though, and every 10th house or so you come across is a decrepit sh*thole of a home with the proverbial washer/dryer in the yard – surrounded by these huge stucco monoliths. It’s everything that’s good and bad about Phoenix in one condensed area. Most of the old homes were built in the 20’s and 30’s – and are incredible to see compared to the 3000+ square foot new homes. Families of 6 – 8 back then got by on 1,200 square feet. Today – couples alone seem to need 3,000 square feet or more.

We soft pedaled a 50 miler on Sunday around the front side of South Mountain – up the 7 mile slope to the TV towers – and flyin’ back down – on a 75 degree day. I only worked on the climb, and hit 170bpm for just a minute or so. It was a great LSD training ride with D.

Back in Flag now. It’ll be 58 by Wednesday. Time to bust out the skateboards.

Friday, February 22, 2008

IF Pam Anderson were from Kenosha, WI.

(note - I totally plagiarized this from, but c'mon - is this not true?!)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

That's what I call Prison.....

So I stop over at Ellsie's tonight, and his wife asks me "how do your legs feel now after the race". I spout off something like "great, they feel great, no soreness at all". So - head home, put blondie to bed and put myself in isolation on the rollers - prison as I call it. If it weren't for Beck, Buckcherry, Cheeseburger, Cake, and of course a little TLC, I would have not even made it for the entire 46 minutes that I did survive. My legs had nothing, I was pedaling squares, and worse off - around the 35 minute point when I usually hit my stride, I started crowning what was to be a colossal dumping of the kids at the pool. That kinda killed it for me. Ahhh well, at least I got on the rollers for a pretty good 46 minute workout.

Off to the hot tub....

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Images from the weekend...

Suffering builds character?....I think somebody said that before

24 Hours in the Old Pueblo…

I packed 3 days before the event based on a forecast of high 50’s to low 70’s with mostly sunny skies throughout the weekend. As they say in Wisconsin: “If you don’t like the weather – wait 10 minutes”. Well out here, change happens slower but when it does, it doesn’t relent.

It rained after midnight on Thursday so we arrived at the road to the race course Friday morning knowing it would be muddy – but not quite this muddy. Cars were all over the place, and the washes were pretty soupy. The camping area was already clogged up with RV’s stuck in the dips in the primitive roads, and most of the campsites occupied. We managed to find a pretty good spot and had about an hour to set up a tent, and get situated. Then it started raining – and didn’t stop for 6 hours….turning to snow overnight. Eck rolled into camp around 6pm to find two dudes (me and Josh) in our tent drinking Fat Tire with sleeping bags covering our legs in camp chairs shivering to stay warm. Eck brought a tarp, a couple of 2x4’s with rope and we strung a shelter off the end of his pickup tailgate. His Toyota is usually gold, but it was dark brown now – the whole thing. He also brought an above-ground firepit with enough wood to get us through until 10pm. Oh – and two cases of Sierra Nevada which kept us sane and warm until Jeff arrived late.

We woke up Saturday morning to snow patches on the ground and a heavy fog. Talk about no motivation to ride….but, you could feel the weather changing and by the 12:00pm start we were all pretty jazzed to rip it up. Jeff started off – being a rookie and a good runner – he was nominated for the LeMans start. The dude left our team baton in a port-a-john so he was running like a house afire after the gun went off to be the first one back to the port-a-john to get his baton. He found it, and was probably the 25th rider to get on the course because of his sprint! There were no less than 450 riders at the start line so he put us in a good place. He rode a steady lap, and we were mid-pack by the time he came in.

Being a brainless dumbass I tried to get us back into the top 20% immediately – forgetting due to overloaded amounts of adrenaline and testosterone (and some HGH that I got from Sylvester Stallone) that this was a 24 HOUR event. I gunned it over the bitches (a series of 7 consecutive “bumps” in the racecourse), rode my big-ring for the next 40 minutes and then my legs exploded on the final climb before the drop into the start house. Great strategy considering I haven’t ridden at a heart rate over 160 in four months while attempting to build a base of fitness for the year. As Gwen Stefani might spell out in one of her stupid songs S-T-U-P-I-D….B-A-N-A-N-A-S….I had a good lap time, but I was dehydrated, my thighs were cramped and it took a long time to recover. Josh and Eck followed with fast laps and we were in 36th place after we had all finished one lap.

Night laps creep up quickly, and we were into them at 5:30pm. My first one was horrible as it turned into a recovery lap for the first hell bent lap – but I didn’t realize that until mile 7. Of course, I started out way too fast again and floored it over the bitches, kept the gas on until mile 7 and then EXPLODED again….Women, children, cats, hamsters, invalids, you name it…..they were passing me on the final climb. I rolled into the starthouse gassed, and starving with a slow time. I went up to the camp, got a $20 bill and spent the whole thing on hot food at the EXPO area. Two steak sandwiches with everything on them and a hot bowl of soup with bread. It was probably 2500 calories in 15 minutes and it felt great. Back to the campsite for two handfuls of cookies and 24 ounces of water and a 15 minute nap…..massage the legs a bit, and I was ready to ride again. My third lap concluded at 3am and this time I spun out a smaller gear, stayed steady and never got out of the saddle EVER. It was a much faster lap time, and I felt great again. Josh, Eck, and Jeff all rode solid lap times throughout the night without any major mechanical or lighting issues. This kept us around the top 40 all night.

Daybreak – sun, no clouds, and by 7am I felt the warmest I had felt in what seemed like forever. My last lap started at 8:15am and I again, rode sensibly, but took some chances when I had the opportunity. I didn’t leave everything I had on the course, but that was OK because we were inevitably finishing with 16 laps regardless of how fast I rode. I ripped a good time, and crossed that line feeling great – knowing I had a few hours to eat, sit in the warm sun, and cheer on my teammates as they completed the final laps. Josh and Eck tore it up and we managed a 33rd place finish out of 134 teams. Damn fine results for 4 d-bags who normally don’t ride well until mid-summer. Eck had a great line: “I was only getting passed by guys with tan, clean-shaven legs so you can’t feel bad about that”. Indeed – the dudes from the desert occupied the top spots as they have been riding all winter long.

4 guys, 16 laps, everyone pulled their weight, and nobody bitched about the weather. That’s a recipe for a good team. Ordinarily I’d probably tell a better story about fighting it out tooth and nail with a guy for a placing….but I was really only racing for my own goals and to not let my teammates down. Good times – can’t wait to suffer again!

pics to follow, once I find my camera.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Looks like there's room at Disneyland this weekend...

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Here we go...

clothes - packed
Camping gear - packed
Human Growth Hormone - injected
Roger Clemens' manuscript "I lied and I got caught" - packed
Directions to venue - check
Beer - on ice
Tires - brand new tubeless setup that hopefully keeps me velcroed to the Sonoran desert floor
Snake bite kit - whoops...

Lookout Tucson, the Small Town D Bags are rollin through like a weak Canadian cold front that changes the ambient temperature by maybe 1 degree. At least we'll have a whole lotta fun.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Did you see how much money GM lost last year?

They lost 38.7 billion dollars in 2007. As a result, GM offered buyouts to 74,000 hourly workers - their ENTIRE hourly workforce. I have a better idea, how about buying out shitcanning the upper end of the workforce?! All I know is that if my property lost money at the end of any given year, I would be tastefully shown the door with no apologies, no benefits, and no golden parachute.

The goal is to bring in a new workforce at lower wages, and to continue to produce the same vehicles. Gas guzzling, boxy, poor quality control, and of course dependent on gasoline. I wonder if they would ever consider, with all of their capital, starting a national movement of gasoline-free vehicles?

Johnny McCain was right when he said to the UAW that they would likely be losing jobs in the future - while Mitt Romney promised a resugence of jobs in the motor city.

I got a problem with Johnny I hope he doesn't sell out to conservatives. He's starting to walk the fence to please everyone and I wonder how much of that is political speak, and how much of it is really who he is.

My friend Ellen wrote to me today - here's an excerpt of her craziness after I told her how great it would be to be this generation's Frank Stallone:

"Seriously, you're right-- to be a Stallone would be a decent way to make a living, even if it meant that your Mom was this psycho...
What up, Stalloney Boy! Crazye for Stallone. God, why have Stallone and Swayze never been in a movie together? That seems so wrong. Or have they been? Like "Throw Momma from the Train" or some crap like that!? Were they in "Too Wong Foo?" together? Anyway, it's too late now if they haven't been in a film together. They've both faded like wilted roses from a high school prom. "Rambo" is playing at the local movie house in Rottenwood. Jeezus, would Stallone PLEASE get some new material?? He's been milking Rocky and Rambo for the better part of the past 30 years. It would be like me carrying around Floyd's taxidermied body 20 years from now, taking photos of it in front of random locations long after he's dead. Ever see "Copland"? He was actually quite good in that. He's not a bad actor, truly, when he branches out. Though I do not see him ever making a "John Travolta-style" comeback. Don't call it a comeback."

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Good fun, good times, good Lord there's a lot of ice on my roof..

Time goes too fast, most of the time. My Mom and her hub came up for the weekend and stayed at Junipine. That seemed to be the best way to get them up to Northern Arizona in the winter. It's crazy that they have never stayed there - I have been there for the better part of the last 10 years. It was great to see them both.

Saturday morning, Lyza and I packed it up and headed south to meet them. The three o' dem went on a hike, and I hit the roadbike to ride from Sedona to Jerome and back. Sheck - I knocked on your front door, and the only one home was barky boy Floyd. Both parties finished in 3 hours. Lunch, playtime, dinner, DONE. It was a great day. Followed by a quick breakfast this morning, and we were back in Flagstaff for the warmest day since November - it was nearly 50 degrees. Unfortunately, with all of the snow we have had, everyone's gutters have pack ice, and the constant freezing/melting is rotting many north facing roofs in town. I have east/west roofline - so I was only faced with maybe 25 feet of ice. Hammer - check, ladder - check, ice chunks spraying me in the face on impact of the hammer, check.....2 hours later plus 1/2 hour on the roof shoveling off snow, and we're looking good again. The gutters are draining and all seems to be well. Lyza and I celebrated with a colossal fire in the stove, and a formulaic hollywood bomb called Fantastic 4 or something like that. It was perfectly simple, $1.49, and right around 1.5 hours. Good night Lyza, and I just finished 1 more hour of housework.

Being a single parent is not easy, and I have more admiration for those that do it 24/7/365 versus me going 24/7/187.5. I am listening to this new Sheryl Crow stuff on Napster and it SUCKS. Anywhoo - It's taken me a couple of weeks to get into the rhythm again, and it'll mean cancelling the gym membership and buying a few pieces of weight equipment for the garage so I can work out after 9pm with a sleeping kid in the house. D has 7 more months of massage school, so I better get used to it again. Ohhh for crissakes, this music is horrible.

Aside from the ice pack work today, I spent about 2 hours on the garage - making it more of a bike shop/work space combo. Big weekend - woo hoo! It was a big weekend for D, as she busted out a 15.5 mile run in around a couple of hours for second place in her age division. Why would anyone want to run that far on trails, when you could ride that far in around an hour on a sweet single speed? I think she's asking the same question as her left knee is all f*cked up.

I'll hit the rollers tomorrow morning for an hour, ride hard on Tuesday, and call it a wrap for Old Pueblo. I'm ready and psyched to race.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Growing up Zeppelin

Over Christmas, I picked up a copy of Led Zeppelin’s latest 2-disc compilation. It’s a chronological compilation of their biggest and best from Zep 1 though Physical Graffiti. Playing it from time to time in the house, my daughter has caught on to the music. She loves the guitar riffs, the heavy dose of John Bonham’s drums, and she mimics Robert Plant’s screams. I remember when I discovered Led Zep, but that was because I was closer to 13 years old. I found a copy of their Untitled 4th album – the one with No Quarter, Stairway to Heaven, When the Levee Breaks, Black Dog etc….I wore that vinyl out. Now, here’s Lyza asking me to play Kashmir because “it sounds like scary monsters are marching down our hallway!”. All I know is that it’s a good thing that it’s hard to comprehend Plant’s lyrics – so she is simply reacting to the music itself – which is arguably some of the best R&R ever produced.

I am fully ready for the day when she is listening to bubble-gum pop stars like Myley Cyrus and Hillary Duff, but I can’t help but think that with a Led Zep foundation, those forays into weak pop music won’t last too long. She likes Amy Winehouse too, but I cut her off QUICK when, while playing Uno, Lyza muttered “They try to make me go to rehab but I said NO NO NO”.

Looks like no racing this weekend – just training. I’m down with that 100%, and looking forward to caking up my bike with red dirt in Sedona.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Just go here - and check out the reason for this quote: "I think God was holding my leg, beating my ass, teaching me that I hadn't been doing everything he wanted me to do,"
Romney quits, which seals the deal for McCain….

The only prediction I have been right on, since I can’t remember shit anymore, is saying that McCain would emerge as the frontrunner prior to the New Hampshire primary. I just had a hunch that it was his time considering how f*cked up this country is because of conservative control. I just wanted the most moderate GOP candidate to represent, that’s all.

I find it a riot that the right wing, you know – the ones who call themselves conservatives, are all up in arms over McCain getting the GOP nod. Their problem is that their leading candidate is FOR fiscal responsibility, and he’s FOR a fair solution to immigration. These guys (and chicks – see Ann Coulter the emaciated windbag who now gets to eat a whole lotta shit and campaign for Hillary if she gets the Dem nod since she vowed to do so if McCain wins the GOP) are just whining up a storm, clogging the national airwaves, and ruining my morning coffee time when I listen to NPR.

I like my coffee. I like a quality medium roast, fresh ground, moderately tamped, and I like to drive 8 bar/120psi of boiling water through it to create a frothy espresso. Then I steam ½ a cup of soy milk sans sweetener and voila….. perfuckingfection. Rather than listen to the white-guy, navy blue suit rhetoric on NPR, I flipped on Angry DiFranco – that’s Ani DiFranco for non franco-philes. She’s short, she’s pissed, and she has 10x the talent of 1997’ short, and pissed off chick Alanis Morissette. Check DiFranco out if you haven’t already. Her Out of Range CD is tight.

It was 1 hour and 5 minutes on the rollers again last night. That’s 2 sessions this week, and one more scheduled for tonight. Race day on Saturday may be cancelled as teammates are bailing for personal reasons and I don’t want to drop $50 on gas to get there and back. I can ride in Sedona for free – all day – and probably have more fun.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Super Tuesday...

wasn't all that surprising to me. Cheap Thrill Hill and He's Barack Enough fo' Me are in a dogfight, and McCain is distancing himself from Romney and Huck Finn. It wasn't all that surprising to see Huck Finn make a small comeback in the bible belt states smack dab in the center of Tornado Alley. Unless Johnny Maverick dies of old age on the campaign trail, he should get the GOP nod against who knows right now. There was talk of a McCain/Huckabee ticket last night which is intruiging. I have to do some more research on Huck Finn to see if I would be down with that.

It really wasn't a super Tuesday though. Work was flat, and boring - and Lyza was just drivin' me nutz last night with a whiny, confrontational attitude. I was so crunched for time that I took her to Taco Bell for dinner. That marked the 2nd time in her life she has had fast food with me. Now, I love TB Lounge - but I don't want to get her hooked on Taco crack. I gulped those tacos down like they were my last meal on death row and washed 'em down with a good ol Mormon Pepsi Cola product. Just puttin' money in Romney's pockets I guess. The Taco Bell must have helped though, because she aced her spelling words last night so there must be something smart about consuming Taco Bell food.

Old Pueblo Dreams are starting to come true. So far so good.....we have a team full of jokers who are taking this at the right speed....moderate. I figure we'll moderately ride, moderately drink Patron the night before, and moderately consume beer throughout. Team Moderate? Nope - we're the Small Town Douche Bags. Comin' at ya in slow-mo. Temps are looking like 70 and sunny. Does it get any better than that?

Go Small town D-Bags!

Monday, February 4, 2008

My winter training schedule called for cross training today - as in shoveling snow for 5 hours to get my car outta the driveway and then to help shovel the walkways at the resort. Great for the core muscles, and lower back......none of which I ever train or even have. So, I'm on Vitamin I tonight, that would be a billion milligram dose of Ibuprofen. Ahhhhh, I still feel like shit. Maybe I need a 24 ounce can of Tecate.

So, I decided to sign up for the 2nd AZ MTB State Series race this weekend. I'll likely get my ass handed to me since we have had nothing but snow for a month straight, and all of the tan f*ckers in Phoenix and Tucson have been riding in optimal conditions. Our state series starts in January since it's desert-based.....therefore it ends in May when most of us in Flagstaff are finally done with the cold and snow. D says that the elevation will help me despite the lack of training time. I say - yeah - for maybe an hour, and then I'll explode. I'm racing Expert/Comp this year again, and that means you don't even finish in the top 20 unless you have significant mileage in every week. Ahhhh well, it'll be 75 degrees and sunny down there, and I haven't seen that kind of weather since September. Plus I want to test some new tires for Pueblo the next weekend - and the bike too.

I'm absolutely crushed that I'm missing a ski trip to northern Utah this weekend. My ex-father in law needs some help, so Lyza's birth mother is back in Michigan helping him recover from cancer surgery. I'm loving the extra time with Lyza, but I was really lookin' forward with going on this trip with 9 other dudes from W.L. Gore - a bunch of smart f*cking engineers and PHD's with the exception of the clown who got me the invite. He's just an MSU grad - so you know he's there just to drive, tune skis, and buy beer.

So - off to the rollers for an's 9:30pm. Maybe I'll throw a little TLC in the CD player - nothin' like a little TLC to get me rolling. I'm totally f'n kidding, but I do have a crush on the since deceased Lisa Left Eye Lopes. She's the one who burned Andre Rison's house down - and they kissed and made up after it happened. I think it'll be Warrant and Ratt' reals.

14-6 is better than 18-1 isn't it New England?