Flat Roofing

I have a new job now, I am a roofer!  I have done a few roofs over the years and I have learned a few things about the trade.  Like, I don’t want to be a roofer!  The money is great, sure, but the work is brutally hard.  I am scraped and sore after four days and we have a least two days to go before we are done.  I remember from my youth my dad saying “all flat roofs leak” and I have little experience to say yay or nay on that but I do know that the roof we are doing is not flat.  Anywhere.  Not even close.  It is steeper than any roof I have ever done and we are using harnesses like rock climbers and putting up toe holds and stuff.

So that is what I have been up to for work.  Riding has been slow since we returned from our tour, first because I wanted to take a bit of time off to recuperate and second because I have been so beat up from roofing I have not felt like riding.  I did hit the tues night A ride and was about to take my first pull after we started rotating and as I shifted to the appropriate gear my rear wheel slid around and I thought, “hmmm….  I don’t generally put out enough power to slide the rear wheel until I get outta the saddle” so I took a quick check of my equipment and saw that my rear tire was flat.  Just like that my group ride was over.  Major bummmer.  I drifted off the back and told everyone good bye and that I had everything I needed and have a great ride, etc.  Then I stopped and saw that I had not yet put the pump back on my bike after the tour.  Super major bummer.  I rode the flat in.  This is my second group ride flat this year.  I have been averaging zero for the last couple of years so I think my Conti Gatorskins may be getting past their flat stopping prime.

For those of you who like feel good human interest style olympian stories, check this one out.  It is my favorite ever!

Back to our tour, completed one week ago.  We stopped at a couple of shops along the way.  One was unexpected and we had been directed to it by the bike path folk of the previous post.  It was a nice and cozy country style mom & pop shop called Side By Side Cycle.

It had a side by side sociable style trike parked out front and the folks running the

place were great.  They hooked us up with some maps (Illinois bike maps are awesome, they have the state broken up into 5 sectors and they show lots of smaller roads.  The Iowa map for cyclists is poor by comparison) and we looked around the shop.  They had an old Huffy tandem and lots of used bikes for sale and a candy counter, too!

A nice and small friendly place, we were glad to have been there, and we saw evidence in the window that they had been here, too.

The other shop we visited was my old hometown shop in Antioch.  It was an all out schwinn dealer back when that meant something.  It has always been a strange shop to visit, hard to explain.  They had an interesting looking snow bike with some crazy tank tread drive system.  Bizarre…

And some amazing NOS anodized components and quill Girvin flex-stems in the display case as well as some huge bmx trophies.  If I had the cash and the cargo capacity to drag some of that stuff back here I could hook the Bridgestone up!  Maybe someday, I imagine it will still be there when I am ready.

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3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    brian said,

    good stuff steve. sorry the roofing is taking it out of you, but you did not miss anything on the group ride tonight. it was small, a few people decided to pretty much hammer from the get go, and then we all got wet.

    we should ride saturday, though. i hear there is an amana ride brewing. or perhaps we could do our own amana ride if we want something more low key. let me know what you think.

  2. 2

    Sean said,

    Ugh, roofing!?! I’ve spent many years in the trades and I can’t think of anythnig that makes me happier than having someone else do my roofing.

  3. 3

    As for the roofing part. How old are you? Im 30 and the roofing biz to me is always an addition to lifes adventures. The war scars of roofing the scenery and the people you meet is close to the adventures in biking! Jejejeje. Well Just came back from biking Costa Rica…. That was hard, the humidity there will make you understand that if you can get used to biking there you can bike anywhere. Also great photos, they gave me a feeling of what you guys went through…


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