Tuesday, October 13, 2015

All In One Day

That road ride I did Saturday basically kicked my ass.  The distance wasn’t bad, but the unrelenting wind had me fighting to maintain a decent speed (or any speed at all.)  Once I got home, I took a nice, hot shower and relaxed for a bit.  That was it.  I was done.

So sad.

I wanted to work on some bikes, play some guitar, and do a whole bunch of other shit.  I could not get myself motivated.  I didn’t even have the energy to get up to eat.  I briefly considered ordering Chinese food.

Never mind.

I realized that the only way to get off my ass and do something was to actually get off my ass and do something.  I got up, got dressed, and headed to The Cycle Path.  I had a bike with a part that needed a warranty issue looked into, and as a bonus I just wanted to hang out with some bike people.  I haven’t been there in a while due to my shitty schedule, so I brought a gift.

It’s a well known fact that bike shops love it when you bring beer.  Remember that next time you visit yours.

I hung around for a while enjoying a few beers and some good conversation.  I eventually decided to head back to the house since I had real plans later.  I brought home some dinner (Japanese food for some reason), ate it, and wandered around the house.  I eventually ended up back in bed.  I dozed off, and had to be woken up by Little Miss Sunshine several hours later.

“Didn’t you want to leave at 8:00 p.m.?

“What time is it?”

“It’s 8:00 p.m.”


I took another shower, got dressed, and drove up to the middle of nowhere to see my friends play some kick ass music.


I’ve talked about these guys before.  They rock.  That’s why I go to see them every chance I get (well, that and the fact that I’m trying to get them to let me play a song with them.)

I’m not rock star enough though.

It was a good show, and I didn’t get home until after 2 a.m.  What a long ass day.  Road riding, sleeping, beer drinking, more sleeping, and rock show watching.  I guess it sounds pretty silly.  I ain’t no spring chicken though.  I need my sleep.

Still, it was an awesome way to spend a rainy Saturday.

Monday, October 12, 2015

I Discovered Rain

Okay, I really didn't discover rain.  But since today is generally celebrated as the day that some dude “discovered” a land that already had inhabitants, I figured that I could discover something that was already there too.

So yeah, it was another rainy start to the weekend.  And I made the best of it too.  I was originally scheduled to meet up with the Dirty Party Cycle to do an organized road ride in Belmont, NC Saturday morning.  I woke up early to pouring rain, but more importantly…thunder.  A quick check of The Internets told me that the ride was cancelled. I texted the DPC to let him know it was off and I went back to bed.

I slept another two hours or so. I guess I needed it.  The thunder had stopped once I finally crawled out of bed, so I figured that I’d brave the rain and head on out the road.  Despite the copious amounts of precipitation, I was looking forward to pedaling a little bit.  It was totally worth it.

The road looked like glass.  Neat.

I took off out of my neighborhood and settled in to warm up.  I was comfortable and dry (thanks to my new raincoat) but the wind was brutal.  It was hitting me from all directions, so even slow and steady pedaling was difficult.  At least I had the roads to myself.

Just like most road rides from my house, I rolled down to the greenway to stay away from any cars that might be out on the roads.  I had the place to myself.

The wind was a little calmer under the tree cover.  I kept pushing since I was good and warmed up at this point.  But then I ran into an obstacle. 

Luckily there was a short detour and I was back in action.  And still all alone.

Notice my sweet DeFeet socks.  Get some.

The greenway is always my favorite part, especially on days with shitty weather.  I can go as fast as I want, and I can stop to check out the scenery.

Damn beaver dam.

I popped out of the greenway and cut through the campus of UNC Charlotte.  It was desolate and I enjoyed more alone time.  I headed out of there and on to some real roads, where if it weren’t for a lady pulling out in front of me I would’ve had an awesome time.  She wasn’t paying attention, but luckily I was.  I avoided certain death and went back to my planned route.  Once I turned around to headed back, I got to the greenway as quickly as possible.  I was safe from errant automobiles again, but not safe from progress.

That’s our new light rail line.  I guess I will find a use for it when it’s operational.  But for now, I’ll stick to riding my bike.

What a nice day.  Despite some shitty weather, this was the best road ride I’d had in quite some time.  So what if I didn’t get out on my mountain bike.  I pedaled on two wheels.  I had fun. 

That’s what it’s all about.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Fun Friday

It’s another beautiful day…

Because it’s Friday.  If you’re like me, you have two days off from work.  I’m happy because I sure could use a few days off.  Oh, you have to work and Friday doesn’t mean shit to you?  Sorry ‘bout that.

I don’t really have plans for certain, but I’m certain that I’ll be on a bike somewhere.  From what the weatherman says, there’s rain on the way.  That means any local mountain bike riding is out.  The stuff will be coming from the direction of our mountains, so maybe a trip to the hills won’t happen either.  I’m gonna ride though, even if it’s on a road bike.

That actually looks like fun, but I’m talking about riding on the actual road.  Maybe I’ll get into an adventure or something.  Who knows.  More importantly, who gives a shit.

I can do what I want.

I’m the Captain, right meow.

See y’all Monday…

Thursday, October 8, 2015

It’s Nice Again

You see that?  The sun is finally out around here.  No more rain for a little while and the trails are drying out.  That means more riding soon (hopefully.)  Until then, I get to catch up…

So I never really said anything about the “Sockgate” thingy that happened at Interbike (almost a month ago.)  Mostly because I didn’t feel the need to do so. *  And that’s because there were plenty of people out there that were ready to speak on it.  I’ve been to Interbike, and I’ve seen how it’s sorta geared towards men.  You’ve been there, right?  You’ve seen the booth girls then…

Who gives a shit.  Using women to sell bike stuff (or any stuff) to men has been going on for a long time.  It doesn’t work on me, but I suppose it works on other dudes.  That might explain why the Big Red S sells so many bikes…

They're probably gonna sue me for using this.  Who gives a shit.

Women that ride bikes are cool.  Srsly.  And most of them can out ride me at any given time.  And the ones that are just getting into the sport and can’t yet?  They will torch me soon too.  I dig that.  If you’re a dude that’s threatened by women in the sport, then something is wrong with you.  If you sell bike products, then they should appeal to the consumer because of the quality, functionality, etc. and not because some hot bimbo says so. 

Women are a big part of the sport and are spending money just like us dudes.  They shouldn’t be used for marketing (unless they’re tearing up some trail), but instead we should encourage more women to get into the sport.  So, back to the whole Sockgate shitstorm.  One of the best responses to those socks from Interbike came from Amanda Batty, who said, “Those socks are no more closely related to cycling than cats in wizard hats are.”  My pals over at DeFeet took notice, and immediately partnered up with her to come up with a new sock called, The Batty Cat.

With a goal to encourage women in cycling, sales from this sock go to support Little Bellas

I think that’s neat.  Good for them to turn this into something positive for women in cycling.  What I also think is neat is the fact that my kid, Lunchbox, had a hand in the design of these new socks.  I think I’ve been slipping and forgot to mention it to y’all, but he’s working in the art department at DeFeet now (alongside my buddy Matt, who reads this mindless drivel for some reason.  Hi Matt.)   So of course I’m still a proud supporter of DeFeet, and even moar proud of the fact that my kid is out there contributing to the company that makes the best socks in the world. 


The very socks pictured above are my own personal pair, but you can order up some for yourself just by going to the website (or ask your local shop to get them for you.) 

In other (related) news, I received a couple of other pairs of socks from my friends out in the hills.  Lunchbox didn’t make these, but they are new and part of the High Rouleur Collection (and still rad.)  This new collection of socks is heavily geared towards gravel grinding, and if you haven’t seen the video that DeFeet made about it then take a few minutes to watch.

Go on, I’ll wait.

Here are two of the socks that I’ve added to my personal collection:

The Charleston:

And the Speak Easy:

Although specifically made for cycling, these will probably be added to my work rotation too since they are so comfortable.  I like having DeFeet socks on 24/7.  Yeah, I sleep in ‘em.   So what.

While I’m really not into the whole gravel grinding thing, I’m starting to think I will be soon.  Shit, that means it’s time for another bike.

Anyway, go out and support a company that supports cycling for everyone, and that makes their products right here in North Carolina.

* My opinion doesn't mean a damn thing.  But thanks for reading.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Talk Me Out Of It

Saturday was a long day and I felt like I accomplished very little.  I ate, drank beer, and worked on a few bikes.  Okay, good enough.  I still wanted more though.  On Sunday, I really wanted to ride my bike (a bike, any damn bike) somewhere.  No trails were open yet, but at least the rain wasn’t pissing all over us.  It was more like an old man dribble down the leg rain. 

At first I thought about a road ride.  Then I remembered that road riding sucks when it’s windy outside (and most all other times.)  Then I declared to the little lady, 

“I’m gonna ride my mountain bike somewhere around here.”


“You’re supposed to talk me out of dumb shit.”

“Nope.  Can I go?”

And just like that, we were off.  While I was happy to be out pedaling, I was not happy to be flopping around in a strong wind. 

New rain coat is not fancy.  But it works.

Just like any ride where we don’t load bikes on to vehicles, this one started out in our neighborhood and ended up going through other neighborhoods.  If we were “training”, I’d call these hills fun.

We weren’t training.  But, they were still fun for some strange reason.  Maybe because we were out on bikes.  I dunno.  Or maybe because that if you ride around neighborhoods long enough, you’ll find something fun for mountain bicycles.

Notice how Little Miss Sunshine gets all rad with the drooper post.  So Enduro™.

I don’t think we really rode very far.  We were gone a little under an hour, but it made of for a week’s worth of not riding due to the shitty weather we’ve had.  Instead of bitching about how the trails are too sloppy to ride, we made the best of it by doing a little neighborhood exploring.  I know, it’s not the same. 

But it helped to keep me sane.

I’m just taking baby steps right now.  Baby steps towards what?

Who gives a shit.  All I had to do was get off my ass and onto a bicycle seat.  It turns out that there’s always enough time for that.

Monday, October 5, 2015

I Had Plans

Although we didn’t get as much rain as originally predicted (sorry to the folks down there in SC), I still wasn’t able to get out and ride anywhere awesome over the weekend.  Free weekends usually mean a trip to the hills, but I don’t own a kayak so that was out.  Instead, the little lady and I took off in search of a rain jacket for me (I’ve never owned one despite living in Florida for thirty four years.)

Shopping for things really stress me out.  On our way back, we rolled through the city and I had the bright idea to stop at a brewery.

That made me full of happy.

We stopped at The Unknown Brewing Company here in Charlotte.  They haz awesome beerz.   And they let assholes like me sit out there where they make it.

All while I use their d├ęcor to shamelessly plug DeFeet socks…

It wasn’t all beer though.  Once we got back home I spent some time alone working on bikes.  I got one bike finished that I’m building for a friend (sorry, no photos) and I worked on Darth Maul, my Niner One9 rigid single speed that I’ve been neglecting for a while now.

It’s not like I had that much to do.  Typical stuff, you know.  Stan’s in da tires…

Adjusting chain tension…

And admiring my my new Endless chain ring that hasn’t seen a whole lot of use yet.

So exciting, I know.  However, now this bike will be ready to ride instead of hanging up being all useless.  Little maintenance items that prevented me from taking it on my trip to Kentucky, where instead I had to opt for gears.  Who gives a shit.

Now if everything around here would just dry up so I can ride in some dirt (and have moar exciting things to write about.)

Friday, October 2, 2015

Fun Friday

It’s looking like it's gonna be a shitty weekend…

While there has been much talk around North Carolina about drought conditions, it seems like we won’t have to worry about that anymore.  It’s been raining like crazy for quite a while now, and there’s a new storm out there that’s gonna pile more of it on us.

This is bullshit.  Just when I started feeling like riding bikes again, I don’t see an opportunity to do so.  Last weekend I was lucky enough to escape to Kentucky (and stumble upon a dry trail), but that ain’t happening this weekend.  This is almost as bad as being stuck in a clown hotel for the weekend, cause I’m gonna go batshit crazy.

Meh.  Just when I decided to quit bitching about work, I’ve found something else to bitch about.

Good idea.  Wet trees at that.

I’ll get into something over the weekend.  And it will involve bikes and beer.  Maybe the bike part will just be catching up on neglected maintenance, but at least the beer will be something quite special.

Yup, smuggled back from Kentucky last weekend.  I kinda felt like Han Solo when I brought that back here.

That’s enough funny for today.  I’m gonna go be wet and miserable now.

See y’all next week.