Thursday, January 29, 2009


Holly shite. Yoga is good.

The lady bear has been asking me to go with her to yoga class for a while. But since we are both very busy and important people, we haven't had the time. Until tonight.

We went to a little place called moonglow and took a beginners class. The building is nice, there's a cat, and, well the cat is nice. The actual yoga room is hot as the inside of a pizza oven. I felt like peperoni. It was really really hot. I think the room was something like 85F. Being used to 10F, I felt like passing out for the first part of the session. Next time I'm bringing water, and something to keep my damn hair out of my eyes. I was expecting the yoga to be easy, but I was wrong.

The instructor goes non stop for an hour. There was tons of stretching, some balance, and some challenging (for me! i know right? that's crazy!) core work. At the end of the class my legs felt fantastic. They were really sore and tight before hand, but that hour defiantly fixed them. Yoga is going to have to become part of my weekly routine.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Stumping for parts

After 30 minutes of hell on the trainer, I found a neato sponsorship application on the Raceface website. After circumnavigating all the flash shit that they use to deter, I filled it out.

Current Sponsors?
Tenderfoot, my squeaky chew toy turkey.
So none.

Rigid Niner One9
1980 BCA fixed gear

Riding in the past two years?
I commute 23 miles everyday in snow, sleet, and rain. I’m dedicated. I raced my fist XC series last fall and finished 9th in the Expert Singlespeed division, with absolutely no training time because of the cross country running season. Currently, I commute, workout after my commute, and head to the mountains for training rides on the weekend.

Events you may be attending?
Wilderness 101
Big Bear Classic
24 hrs of Big Bear
High Cascades 100
Subaru 24hr Champion Challenge
With a little support, I'm up for anything

What movies/ mags/ websites do you expect to be featured in?
That depends entirely on my results. Which depends on my ability to race. Which in turn depends on my level of sponsorship support. With a little luck, someone will make a movie about me. (Ha! I lies good)

Why should Raceface sponsor you?
Raceface needs a new face. Being a young, aspiring endurance single speeder, I could provide that face. (by that I meant that they need to sponsor somebody who doesn’t look like a douchey skate boarder. not that all boarders are douchey, just most.) I would give raceface free advertising by sewing a large raceface banner onto my messenger bag, which is seen by dozens of good ol’ boys in pickups everyday. I could also fly a small raceface flag on the back of my cycle. I am even willing to tattoo that neat little eye thing on some part of my body, but only if I am guaranteed free chaining bolts for life.

I fully expect to be getting a nice fat check from the good forging canucks by the end of the week.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

pants! pants! my kingdom for a pants!

I left my riding pants at school yesterday. Bummer. For my bum.
Without my magical water fighting britches I am woefully vulnerable to the weather. And car boogers. Mostly the car boogers. So I did not ride today. I just couldn't muster the courage to brave 11 miles of brown slush without some protection. In a sick, lazy way heated seats are nice every once in a while.

Monday, January 26, 2009


I need more saddle time. I just started logging my rides, and I'm only coming up with about 5.5 hours a week. That's really not enough for the amount of racing I want to do this summer. But oval season (track) is coming up and I know that once I start running I'm not going to have the time, or energy/ desire, to put in more hours. So do I ride more now and hope that my cycling fitness will carry through the running season? Or just not worry about it and get on the bike once track is over? What a dilemma I have.
It really is hard to get in long rides in the cold. My body is starting to get used to the temps, but my water bottle is not. It freezes after about a half an hour in the cold. Turning it upside down in the bottle cage works to an extent, but still it freezes. I've looked into getting a miniature dragon to blow on the bottles, but then I would need to buy miniature goats to feed it. Minoats, as they're called in dragon breeding circles, are notoriously salty. If I fed my dragon with nothing but minoats, he would get thirsty and likely drink my water after he thawed it. And I would still be waterless.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Flatta tat tat

I felt so fast today. I Set a personal commuting record of 43:08 for 11.5 hilly miles on the fixed gear. Decent I say. After school I dropped my bag o' shit in the ladybear's jeep and headed out. It was the first time I've ridden in a while without that bag. Recent estimates have the bag o' shit going at about 30 pounds, which is a good bit for a 135 pound man. So when I finally got to ride without the thing on, it was akin to going from fat to skinny in the course of the day.
From Worthless Garbage

(bag o' shit)

Elated with my feelings of lightness, I blasted away from the school. I tore down the hill and shot up the first climb like a ticklish cat. (?)
I made my way across the first parking lot on the way to the ladybear's house and slowed at the stop sign. After the lumbering steel turds finished crossing in front of me, I got on the gas. And "Thunk!"
I my rear tire slipped into a storm drain. "Nuts." I though, "I hope that doesn't flat."
But my hoping was futile. No less than 800m later I heard the rim rumbling along the pavement. I stopped and got off the bike.
I had left my bag o' shit in the lady bears car.
With my spare tube.
And wrench.
And cell phone.
So I pulled off my toe covers and started walking. As much as traffic sucks on a bike, it is a hell of a lot worse not on a bike. PennDot still does not understand the concept of a road shoulder, so cars use every piece of available pavement. I dare say that this sucks when on foot.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Big Stan

Ever since the passing of the dirt mobillis, my steering wheel cover Big Stan has been feeling a little depressed. He refuses to leave the house and won't take off his damn sweatpants.
From Worthless Garbage

The man needs a job. I think I found two winners.

From Worthless Garbage

From Worthless Garbage

But alas, Big Stan did not enjoy either task. He told me he wants a car or hes going on strike.

From Worthless Garbage

Strike on Big Stan, strike on. You can't change the world with crocodile frowns.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

build a man a fender

Car snot does not taste good, nor is it good for my bike, light, and clothes. Ive know for a while that I was going to need a fender, but with our recent snow storms it really hit me.
So I bought an SKS Shockboard. And it did not fit. My bike has almost no clearance between the top of the tire and the crown of the fork, regardless of if I run a 700c or 26" wheel. So a scavenging I went for something to remedy my woes. 30 minutes later I had a nice fender rigged up.

From Worthless Garbage

This government mandated piece of scrap was formerly on the lady bear's jeep. I think it looks better here, cut in half.
All I had to do to make the fender was chop the plate down the middle with tin snips, bend it to the right shape, and bolt it on through the brake hole in the fork crown. Easy as eating grapes, and it cost me all of $0.00. The best part is that its reflective.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The clavacles

After Friday I began a quest for a better baclava. I searched the deep dark halls of my house for many minutes before I uncovered the clava the lady bear had bestowed upon me for the chistmas. And It was perfect!

From Worthless Garbage

Then I spotted a problem.
A pom pom, the scourge of of all helmeted cold weather bipeds.

From Worthless Garbage

I rushed to my stuff drawer, frantically feeling for my shearing shears
With trembling hands I wrestled the clava to the table.

From Worthless Garbage

In one mighty squeeze I lopped off the pom pom and it tumbled to the ground.

From Worthless Garbage

Having defeated my enemy, I celebrated.

And now tenderfoot has a new hat.

From Worthless Garbage

Friday, January 16, 2009


0 degrees today. Windchill of negative balls. As in total testicular retraction. Need I say more?
I will.
The second I started pedaling to work, my nostrils froze. I could feel the mucus forming into little icicles. There is a small gap between the bottom of my pant leg and the top of my shoe (an ankle in layman's terms), which also proceeded to freeze. But the worst part was not the uncovered parts of my body. It was this.

From Worthless Garbage

Recognise me? I thought not.

This baclava is sooo hard to breath through. I was panting like a mastiff in heat going up the big hill to work. My mouth was open as wide as it could be, and I still could not get enough air. I felt like a moron trying to gasp through that damned tube of fleece.
In other news, the great Penn State University has decided I am not worthy. I have been denied. Though I am not surprised as my GPA was not stellar, I have deiced I will write and call them until they decide to reconsider. I refuse to accept their nonacceptance.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

R.I.P Dirt Mobillis

My car died today. The venerable dirt mobillis is no more. I took her to the doctor for her regular (though 3 months late) inspection, and was told that it would cost about 900 dollars to fix the beast. Ah! Being as the mobillis has 245,000 miles on her, I opted to not fix. And not pass inspection. So no more driving for me. And its going to be -2 degrees tomorrow. Brr.
I guess I come point I'm going to have to get another car. Need some way to haul around the lady and get to the trails. I've always had a thing for wagons.
I was already commuting about 3 or 4 days a week, but now it will be 7. This may be the best thing that could have happened to me.

From Worthless Garbage

RIP. Good times in that piece of dirt

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

stuff review saturdays!! with cat. endless kick ass cog

From Worthless Garbage

This is the best cog I've ever used. Every time I crank the pedals, by some force of wizardry, the kick ass cog spins my wheel. Simply amazing. I own both an 18t and 16t.
(The "t" number must refer to the weight of the cog because the higher "t" count cogs appear to be easier to pedal. I can only imagine how fast and light my bike would be with the legendary 25t cog.)
But in all seriousness. My toothless mascot Tenderfoot loves them. Swears they're the best piece of jewelry hes ever worn.
From Worthless Garbage

Nobody messes with Tenderfoot when he goes to the bar these days

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

winter be har

Winter is here. For sure. The ride in this morning was pretty uneventful, though it showed me how used to the cold i am becoming. It was around 26 degrees without the windchill, and all I wore were two layers of wool. A month ago I would have had to bundle up like a certain individual who will remain nameless.

Oh how I wish I could find a onesie that glorious

Wool is definitely my favorite. Ive worn the same base layer for two weeks of riding and it has yet to stink or become nasty in any way. Beautiful.

fat(ter) front

Last night I finished the long and arduous task of installing a clip on fender and new front wheel. I like this set up for the winter. The velociraptor on the front is much better than a cross tire in the slush, and surprisingly I can't tell any difference in rolling resistance. But most importantly, it looks cool.

I got hit by a little snow storm on the way home. The wind was blowing me from side to side. Its a little disconserting to be blown sideways into oncoming cars. The snow was bad enough that I had to bust out the ski goggles. But even with all the slush on the road, my bum stayed dry. Thank you clip on fender buddy.

Monday, January 12, 2009

aqueous gluteus

I need to put fenders on. My ass is getting soaked almost every morning now. I hate wet ass. I’ve been wearing some rain pants from REI that really cut the wind and help keep me dry, but they are no match for the salty brine that my tires kick up. Not only do I have the rearward soakage to contend, with but when I arrive at school my mouth is filled with road grit. It is not the most appetizing substance. The garbage tastes like well salted dirt.
Fenders will go on. Front mountain tire will go on. I normally run 700c wheels on my commuter, but since it is a mountain cycle, it seems logical to change the back to some bigger rubber for the winter. But that means I have change those damn kludgy brake things I had to use to get the brakes to work with a bigger wheel. Oh well.

(the commuting cycle in its kind-of-winter form)

I really need to decide on a racing schedule for this summer. Wilderness 101 is most defiantly a priority. Yarg! So much training and prep to be done.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Furry SLRs and Energy Bars

Just saw this on mtbr. So sveet. I want one. I guess I'll have to shoot meh self a der firstly.

It would look great on one of these
little devils.

In other news, I'm experimenting with cooking energy bars. So far they are delicious. Hopefully I'll soon have some food I can stand to eat on a ride.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Stuff Review Saturday!!! with cat: Panaracer Rampage

I did hill repeats today. Almost no one enjoys doing intervals, so I'm just going to guess that even fewer people like reading about them. Onward to more stimulating topics!

Since I am not going to write about today's ride, or lack there of, I'm going to start "Stuff Review SaturdaysssS!!! with cat" ("saturdays" purely for alliteration purposes. i don't plan on writing on saturdays. so its unlikely that the reviews will ever come on the title day.)

So. Right to it.

Stuff Review Saturdayayay!!! with cat.

Panaracer Rampage

and cat

(the notorious Z.I.P)

Grip grip grip. These rubbers grip like man juice on fabric. They hook up great on dry and wet rocks. In the slow technical sections on Laural Mountain I could not imagine a better meat. I have yet to loose traction climbing on moist soil or hard pack. The Rampage sheds mud well, but does not have the knob height to work well in very muddy conditions.

The volume is great. Running them tubeless at about 15 psi for front and rear they have really smoothed out the ride on the big carrot. They sealed tubeless with just a floor pump and very little effort. The weight (by my scale "kinda heavy") is not at all unreasonable for the big size. Cornering is almost to good. I have a tendency to over-steer and on more than one occasion the tire has refused to give traction and launched me over the bars.

grippy to a fault. i over steered, and yes, my head did become well acquainted with that tree.

Unfortunately, the massive amount of grip does not lend itself to rolling speed. I knew these tires rolled slow, but just how slow was made painfully obvious to me at the Month of Mud series last fall. All four Sundays I raced on these tires and watched everyone near by roll away anytime we hit pavement. My bike sounds like a truck buzzing down the road.

Conclusion: The big carrot feels glued to the trail with the Rampages. It never looses traction, but is a hells of a lot harder to move than it was with Michelin ATXCs. I really love the Rampage for technical tracks because they ride and stick so well, but really don't love them for racing. They are just to heavy and slow.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Like a Ferret in the Lobster Tank

Yarg! Me eyes! So much ice! On the ride home from work the all-day rain turned into little ice daggers. They stabbed my eyes mercilessly. I had no goggles. Absolutely the last time I make that mistake. Never leave the house in winter with out goggles. I won't. I won't.

I probably will.
It was pouring this morning, and by pouring I mean a slight drizzle. Sort of like the gods were shaking after a pee. In any case, I got wet. But riding in the rain is nice. When I leave my house at 6:30 its pitch black, and as I reach my destination the sun is just coming up. On days the rain is falling it feels akin to a deprivation tank (until a truck comes blasting by. why do they always feel the need to rev up the big dissle as they pass??? must be compensating for something.) If my light wasn't on I would have no idea I was moving. Its real cool in an odd way. Snow on the forecast for tomorrow. Huzzah!

(this man obviously has balls. they must just be to big to fit in his pants)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Grove Run Fail

I have no idea why I insist on riding grove run trail in the upward direction. It just never works.
Grove Run is about a five mile loop (I think. Actually I have no idea. But its more than long enough.) in Laurel Mountain, PA. The trail is cut into the side of the mountain and goes up from the bottom. Basically the whole thing is an off camber climb on loose soil with big rocks and the "occasional" downed tree. Its really really hard to ride up.
Knowing full well the trail's level of really really hard dificultness, I gave it another shot last Saturday. I failed. I think I walked up the hill for about an hour before I turned around and came back.

But the return trip was a blast. Its crazy to me how much more fun it is to ride down a hill than up it. The trail is very unforgiving (death by thorn bushes and drop off on one side and sharp pointy rocks on the other), but I manged to stay on it and keep my lovely face intact.
(I swear I hopped this one right after the picture)