Monday, August 25, 2008

I Spy ...

Up early in the morning, sleeping in the back of the car.

Yellow tape cutting a course through a park.

Cross bikes

This can only mean one thing...

A cross race!

This past weekend we were up in Mass visiting my brother-in-law and sister-in-law. We hung out, played with the kids and the dogs, went to a Grange Fair, had some awesome chicken and corn on the cob, and oh yeah, there was a cross race.

Mmm mmm chicken.

Was great to see Mega.

Marc doing his thing.

Taylor doing some acrobatics on Beth while waiting for Marc to come back around.

Here was a sign at the park. I just thought this was great. Very blunt.

Outdoors At Last!

After over a year of climbing strictly in the gym we've finally made it outside. After our first adventure as we call them, we got hooked and have gotten out as much as we can. Some places are better than others for boldering, but they're always fun.
I learned the hard way that it's best to take off your climbing shoes when not climbing. One day I decided to go exploring, while still in my climbing shoes. I was lazy and didn't feel like taking them off. The whole next week my big toe was killing me. I didn't find this until a couple weeks later when I finally took off the toenail polish. Ah, that's why it hurt so bad.

Wes climbing while still in his sneakers. Yeah, he could climb things and top out in sneakers that we couldn't.

This little boulder was the scourge of our existence for a day and a half. Though it was small, it was smooth with almost no holds. It took a while and I think we all lost some skin on it, but we made it. Yeah!

This is that boulder too. The shot looks way cool. Wes took it. The hold is actually where my right hand is, that little dent. Yup that's it.

Is this awesome or what!

Wes relaxing.

Buddy on a low start.

Rachel climbing the Mojo I think.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Not the Weakest Link

Thanks Kim! I thought I was free of this when Marc told me he had skipped me. Obviously not. Damn! Ok so here it goes...

If you could have any one — and only one — bike in the world, what would it be?
I would have to go with a mtb. That way I could still ride on the road if I really wanted to. It would be miserable, as mtb's are pigs on the road, but hey, it's a lot better than the alternative; a road bike on trails.

Do you already have that coveted dream bike? If so, is it everything you hoped it would be? If not, are you working toward getting it? If you’re not working toward getting it, why not?
I must say I'm pretty happy with the bikes I currently have. I built up my mtb last year and pretty much put on it what I wanted. As well as my cross bike. A road bike is a road bike, so who cares.

If you had to choose one - and only one - bike route to do every day for the rest of your life, what would it be, and why?
Damn, that would really suck. I do have a tendency to ride certain loops over and over, but I can't imagine just one forever. I guess if I had to I'd pick an hour loop from my house riding trails. That way on shorter days I'd be good, and when I wanted a longer ride I could double or triple it. You didn't say I couldn't do it more than once, just the same route. ;-)

What kind of sick person would force another person to ride one and only one bike ride to do for the rest of her / his life?
Yes, that would be a sick fuck. Plus I want to know how that would be monitored. Am I going to be on surveillance or little spies following me around. And what are the consequences if I stray?

Do you ride both road and mountain bikes? If both, which do you prefer and why? If only one or the other, why are you so narrow minded?
I ride both and prefer both at different times. All depends on my mood that day.

Have you ever ridden a recumbent? If so, why? If not, describe the circumstances under which you would ride a recumbent. Who's narrow minded now?
No way, they are just ridiculous.

Have you ever raced a triathlon? If so, have you also ever tried strangling yourself with dental floss?
No, it wouldn't be much of a race once I drowned trying to do the swim.

Suppose you were forced to either give up ice cream or bicycles for the rest of your life. Which would you give up, and why? Ice cream.
Easy, ice cream. Don't care for it.

What is a question you think this questionnaire should have asked, but has not? Also, answer it.
The better question would be "what would you give up your bicycle for?"
I'm not sure how to answer that. Every time I think of something, it would be even better if I could ride. Of course Marc and my dogs are not an option here.

Can you conceive cycling without racing?
Definitely, I've stopped racing before for years. But racing definitely adds something.

You’re riding your bike in the wilderness (if you’re a roadie, you’re on a road, but otherwise the surroundings are quite wilderness-like) and you see a bear. The bear sees you. What do you do?
Unfortunately this has happened. I kept my eye on the bear, but only kinda, as I didn't want it to see me looking at it. (like it mattered) Also, I checked behind me for people. There were none, but I was hoping for someone. You don't have to the be the fastest, just not the slowest.

Watch out Kerry, Mega, Gavigan and Elizabeth. Now it's your turn. Have Fun!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Spiderman, Spiderman, Doing what a spider can...

This was the theme song in my head this morning. I ventured out for an early mountain bike ride to try to escape the full heat of the day. It was already extremely humid, but in the woods, it was a little cooler. Being so early I'm pretty sure I was the first one out on the trails as I managed to capture about a million spiderwebs with my arms, body and face. Around each turn was a fresh web for me to catch. I grabbed and swiped at my face trying to pull the tiny threads free. I only managed to see one before actually going right through it. Luckily I did not see one spider that came with all the webs.
My ride turned out great, other than all the icky sticky spiderwebs.

Saturday, July 05, 2008


Yesterday I did my first Time Trial. Marc has been trying to talk me into doing a TT for a few weeks now. Last Friday I finally agreed that I would do one. Then he was on a mission to get me stuff to set me up properly. First came TT bars. So Sunday he hooked them up and we went out for a very wobbly ride. Monday was booties, of course everyone was out, so he ordered me some and they showed up Thursday. Wed he picked up a helmet and skin suit from Ethan that he very kindly agreed to let me borrow. I tried on the skin suit in advance and realized that wasn't going to work, if that was my skin, then I was a Sharpei. So I wore my shorts & jersey. I had briefly stuck the helmet on and it was a little loose, but figured no big deal.

Friday morning we head up. Of course it's raining as I'm heading to NJ to race. It always rains in Jersey if I'm racing, never fails. We get within about 10 miles and get thoroughly lost with no where to ask directions. We try looking it up on our phones, but it's being slow & difficult, so we wake Ethan up and ask him to please tell us where we are. He find us and guides us in. Thanks Ethan! Marc now has less than an hour to get ready. I'm trying to help him, plus get me ready as I start shortly after him. He takes off, I hop on the trainer, trying to get in a rhythm and the dude next to me keeps coming over to ask me questions. First his number is on upside down, so I help him out. Then he can't get his jersey on, so I point out that he pinned his number clean through. Finally I realize I'm running late and have to get up to the starting line. I grab my stuff, throw on the helmet and take off. At this moment is when I realize the extent of the helmet being too big. I had gotten the straps down to it was ok and not wobbly. The probably was that it has a back stabilizer and when I got myself down into TT position, it dug into my neck and threw the helmet forward over my eyes. Crap! No time to do anything about it. Went to the line as they're yelling my number and I take off. Every couple minutes I'm shoving it backwards trying to see more than 5 feet in front of me. Most the time I just left it down and rode blind. Luckily a TT is straight. Puts a whole new meaning on put your head down and go.

Anyway, with mishaps aside, was lots of fun.

Saturday, June 28, 2008


Recently we went to a show in Philly and due to a bad parking spot and poor maneuvering getting back to the car, our usual 1 hour drive home, turned into 2 hours. It sucked!
Last night Marc and I headed up to Hershey, Pa for a show. We've never gone to this venue before and it is a bit of a hike. The last thing we wanted was a repeat of the Philly incident. Unfortunately in trying to avoid one incident, we kinda provoked another one.
After the final song of the encore (I do not believe in leaving early) we took off. Marc led the way, I hung on as he weaved his way through the crowd. Then he noticed a short cut, but we'd have to climb a gate. I didn't hesitate and swung myself over. Unfortunately for me and the guy on the other side it was a little higher than I anticipated and I smashed into him. Luckily he took it well and I kept on my way going under the next one. As we are moving towards the intersection there is a big pile up on one side and far fewer people on the other, so we chose the path of least resistance. As we stand there waiting for the ok to cross, a rent-a-cop is pulling a huge power play with the other side. He's pointing and screaming about to burst a vein, "I'm only going to tell you this once". He was an ass. Anyway, then he starts in on us. He starts screaming at us that there's no way we're crossing there and we have to back track and go the other way around. With the clock ticking, I pipe up and say that's crap, there's a cross walk right here, I'm not going back across. Well a couple teens figured this sounded just great and took off across the street. I figured what the hell and followed. Marc meanwhile is standing there chanting 'asshole' to the guy. It catches on quickly with the crowd. Before I know it, the entire crowd of 100's of people bum rush the guy and the intersection. I look back and I can't see Marc as he did not follow me. But I do see a ton of full out running and chanting 'asshole' coming at me quickly. I keep going, Marc catches up and we high tail it to the car. We were out quickly without incident. Well besides the little riot we kinda started. Ooops.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


I don't really have a fear of heights. Going up is perfectly fine. Coming down however, is another matter.
In movies they show some person hanging on for dear life, fear in their eyes, and their fingers slowly slipping off of whatever they are holding on to and then eventually they end up falling to their death. I always thought as I'm watching, these people are crazy. If I knew I was gonna die I could hold on. It wouldn't matter how bad it hurt, I'd just keep fighting until I was ok just because I'd have too. ha ha ha Yeah it doesn't work that way.
Last week I was at the climbing gym. I decided to go up a bouldering problem that had a particularly high finish. Once up there I froze and couldn't get myself down. Marc was below me telling me to jump, yet I couldn't. I tried to down climb, but the holds were too small and I was fatiguing from the panic. As I stayed up there the worse the panic got and the more my arms fatigued prematurely. Eventually I saw my hands slipping, and even though I knew it wasn't to my death, there was nothing I could do about it. I ended up falling and I was fine, just shaken.
Turns out the movies are right. Your will will only get you so far.