Archive for February, 2009

This Just In


stp81829Frostbike is over, long live free stuff.  Details and more pics to follow, but Cody and I had a great time hob-nobbing and meeting new people and seeing old friends.  We talked with North America’s Worst Euro Cross Racer.  We met Ari!  Ari is good.  We witnessed Lennard Zinn.  We rode the new electronic Dura Ace and must admit that it was pretty cool.

stp81867We drank coffee.  And beer.


We took a 3 speed hub rebuild class at Hiawatha taught by Mark Stonich of Bikesmith.


Did I mention we got free stuff?  Later.


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Free Coffee!

I recently heard about some bike racer that won a lot of races.  Like hundreds.  I don’t remember even who it was, Not Merckx but it does not much matter, and while rare there are still plenty of them fast Bozos out there.  It got me to thinking about how many bike races I might have won.

I might have won more than I ever did, that is for sure!  I got the final stage of a three stage race to take the overall as a bonus when I was a cat 4.  That was a good one.  I was the Iowa cat 4 RR champ in 92 or something like that.  I got beat by a Minnesotan but he did not count!  I won a Pie Race up in Ely one year that I rode to and from for good measure.  I won the 30+ state cross race, but that was as part of the 1/2’s field.  I won a crit in Arizona once by attacking at the bell just as the break was caught and holding it to the finish, that was a great feeling to pull that move off.  I finished the Dirty Kanza first once, that counts as a win I suppose.  I have been a category champ many times in other races.   I suspect (hope?) I am missing a couple of other fine results but these that I remember show that at least I have managed to win a few races over the years.

Now that I am old and slow and have only been out for 3 rides this year I am taking comfort in other challenges.  Like reading.  Our amazing Iowa City Public Library has an Adult Winter Reading Club.  Read 2 books and you win a free cup of coffee from the local fresh roasting coffee house, Capanna.  I did it!  First I plowed through Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, which was entertaining and catchy with rambling philosophical passages and wholesome cowgirl sex scenes.  I liked the book and am now happy to quote it on occasion.  I had planned to enjoy a Vonnegut work next, Timequake, but I digressed when I saw the Yiddish Policeman’s Union on the Library’s staff favorites shelf.  I had read this book once before but as I promised myself while long suffering through Infinite Jest as I had been for the previous 8 months (I’m almost done!  AGAIN!  Yipee!) that I would read some happy fiction after it was all over I took that book home and made it my own for the club.  What a read.  If I were forced to pick a favorite contemporary writer, Chabon would probably be my choice.  I enjoyed reading the Yiddish, nu, and wanted to hear the book aloud so I put a hold on the audiobook.  Tomorrow we head to Minneapolis to attend Frostbike and geek out on the shiny bike bits for the weekend and while the audiobook hold is not in so we will not have Meyerle or Berko to keep us company we will surely have coffee, and lots of it.

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When Couches Attack!

A cat named Wayne,  he enjoys his days as a cat will.  Everything is routine.  Chow.  Harass humans.  Visit litterbox.  Nap.  Bat around a pen.

stp81814Then, from out of nowhere, the unsuspecting kitty takes a couch full in the face!

stp81818Poor little guy, he never had a chance.

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I am back on the bike!  Last Friday was not a fluke. Yesterday after work I went South into the fearsome wind and enjoyed the pretty sunset. Turned around and watched the moonrise while the wind helped me home.  The farm fields are all flooded from snowmelt and with the glow of twilight reflecting from them with trees silhouted behind it felt like I was rolling down on the bayou or something.  It looked a little like that

Today I rode North with Jim over the reservoir dam and around town a bit.  We had some good conversation and it was really warm, like no hat, gloves, booties kind of warm.  Crazy business.  Saw lots of people out enjoying it.  So there you have it, 3 rides in 2009!  Count my jaunts to and from skiing and I am probably well on my way to 10 hours of riding for the year.

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Balancing The Ol’ Karmic Checkbook

As was foretold by the great skier and  seer of things, what was lost has come back to me.  I was a non-believer, I admit it.  For nine days my precious was out there on its own, but apparently no one but its true owner could draw it from the melting snowbank!dsc00114Twas a fine day of settled accounts.  I went for a real ride on a bike that works and I wore the silly suit for the first time since the Great State Cross Race of 2008.  While out whiling away the miles I encountered a mighty road prize, the first of 2009 and the first in quite a while as I do not stop to pick up windshield scrapers.

stp81815Stanley Fat Max Extreme!  A $19.99 value at Sears.  Who knows what I might have done to deserve this ethereal bounty of goodwill.  Mayhap it had something to do with Cody and I pushing a stuck car out of the snow yesterday?  Or that I read Even Cowgirls Get the Blues?

In even more coincidental bike lock adventuring, Cody lost her bike lock just yesterday, but went back today and found it hanging on a parking meter where she had left it.  Unbelievable!  If this is not the stuff of riveting reality TV then home improvement might be.  Amazingly, We finally tiled our counter tops!  Yes, 3 years of plywood marination came to an end last weekend.  Ugh, I shudder just looking at this photo.

stp81787Wayne oversaw the work as his portrait oversaw him.  Also, you can see last year’s first road prize is being put to good use!


Mix master Cody played the Mapei mortar.


It is now much more user friendly!

stp81812Going to finish that drywall tomorrow, and all of our projects that have been stuck at 7/8ths completed for the last few years will finally be buttoned up.  Then we can start making new messes!  We need to paint the exterior.  And a full basement would be nice, too.  Neverending…

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