Saturday, January 23, 2010

'Picture Of The Year' and The World Class Upgrade




PICTURE OF THE YEAR
Every race I do, I look to see if there was a photographer that may have snapped a decent picture or two of me (don't even tell me you don't have a folder on your pc with pictures of you racing. I'll call you a liar). I figure, when I get too old to race, I'll have something to show my grandkids. Of all the shots I managed to dig up of my 2009 season, I liked this one the best.

Yes, I know it has the photographers logo on it, and I'm not publishing it without compensation. I did in fact buy an 8x10 semi-gloss. It looks WAY better than what you see here. It was taken at the Orchard Cross race in october 2009.

WORLD CLASS UPGRADE
Last fall, the day before the Pinnacle Challenge, the shock fork on my MTB started locking up. Closer inspection showed the anodization on the stantion tubes actually worn off. I had seen this already but the fork seemed to work fine. Bear in mind this was a 2001 SID, and it's been ridden hard, as you can see.


Of course, I didn't have time to replace it before the race, so I raced on it. Can't say it slowed me down all that much, other issues were at play there. So, I could have A) bought a repair kit and fixed it, or B) just bought a new one. Since the legs were so worn, I chose B, and found a nice new upgrade on Ebay.

A brand new 2009 Rock Shox World Cup. I got it for a bit more than 50% of retail (hey, I may have bought it retail and supported my LBS of a certain other blogger had bothered to answer my emails to him about that specific issue, more on that below). Uncut steerer, no races or brake hardware ever installed. Allegedly it was part of a build kit from BDH bikes in canada, and the cutomer wanted something else so this one was set aside. I installed it but haven't had the chance to ride it, I've been on Son-Of-Ice bike. It _does_ look quite sharp though.

I've ordered a rebuild kit anyways, what the hell, I'll give it a try. I'm mean, how hard could it be? Bike shop mechanics do it all the time.

AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT

I've soured on the world wide web, life in the united states, and living in massachusetts specifically.

What better way to advance the health and welfare of the people than for the u.s. supreme court to allow that people with the most money get the loudest voice?

What better way to celebrate the legacy of Ted Kennedy than to send a vapid neocon sock puppet to 'represent' massachusetts?

What better way to show appreciation for contributing to a non-charitable fund than by _not_ sending a thank-you note, and subsequently removing my most recent comments from your blog? (ignoring emails about possibly buying a new shock fork didn't help either, ok, I get the hint.)

This week, instead of perusing news repositories and my expansive list of 'blogs i follow', I've spent my idle periods at work playing solitaire and mine sweeper (not the internet versions). There will be a lot more of that (or is it, a lot _less_ of that?) as I focus instead on introspection, and reseting and re-enforcing my personal goals and sensibilities.

So, I'm checking out for a while, and that is _truly_ a World Class Upgrade.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

such silliness....(updated!!)

Go here. If you're at work you might want to turn down the sound. Select FF+G, the 'Extreme'.

It's CGI, but entertaining none the less.

And from the "How Not To Train" files. A weight lifting fail

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Son Of Ice Bike

Yesterday, I got two and a half hours on Ice Bike. That's Son Of Ice Bike, not This Ice bike.


(clickie makie biggie)

Son Of Ice Bike is a circa 1997 K2 (Pro-Flex) 3000 FS with a Girvin Elite fork. I got this bike when I broke the swing arm on my first racing MTB (1993 Pro-flex 753). Pro-flex had been acquired by K2, and they no longer made real cross country bikes. The local rep gave me a wicked good deal on the 3000, but it was a few pounds heavier and not as nimble. In short, it wasn't cross-country-race-worthy. I gave it to my wife, who swung her leg over the saddle exactly once, and didn't leave the drive way. I let her have it since her bike was an old non-descript tank that was heavy and uncomfortable, allegedly the reason she nover rode it. This thing is beyond plush, and I even gave her a wide soft saddle and wide 26" city tires to smooth it out more. I mean, this bike was a barcalounger with 26" wheels.

So, it's been sitting in my basement for about ten years. Last winter, I went on a ride at the end of the winter in WinneKenni park, after riding the old ice bike on the heavily rutted frozen trails a week earlier and getting the shit knocked out of me. I remember looking at the 3000 thinking 'shit, she isn't going to ride that thing, and what better bike to ride on frozen rocky hilly trails than a early free-ride bike?'

So I swapped out the 'wife' saddle, the short/high reach stem, and city tires.The bike is heavy, especially with the custom made IRC pirannha Ice Tires (loaded with 220 #6 3/8" stainless steel sheet metal screws per tire). It glides over hill and trail like a hovercraft.

Yesterdays ride was sweet. The snow was 2 - 4 " deep with hard pack/ice underneath. I had no problems hooking up on any terrain, and rode the entire route having to dab once, when crossing an intersection on the way home and having to make a sudden diversion over a new snow bank as the approaching car couldn't stop.

So now I'm STOKED/AMPED/PSYCHED/PUMPED/HYPED for the up coming season. I'm only about two weeks behind on my weight lifting schedule, not bad considering how I got sidetracked in december.

The focus of my energies is going to be the 2010 Harpoon Brewery Indoor time Trial. I'm the current fixed gear record holder for the event.

Let's be perfectly clear - they have no fixed gear category. Saying I'm the current fixed gear record holder carries about as much weight as saying I'm the current record holder for guys in their late 40s who live 30.8 miles away with a family, two mortgages, a full-time job, and who have never won a sanctioned time trial.

But hey, it's all I got and I'm gonna hang onto it for dear life.

I leave you with a photo montage of my MTB ride through winne kenni park yesterday (ala CBS Sunday Morning). All pictures are withing the park boundaries, except for the jewish cemetary.