Archive | February, 2010

distraction jackson

8 Feb

So not that it’s anything new, but I’ve been in a bit of a fog lately:

can't...stay...focused...

It’s like my normal daydreamy state times five hundred. I was hoping that this morning’s brisk ride would snap me out of it, but no luck. Once the sun rose I just tra-la-la’d all the way to work, because it was light! And I could see! And I started thinking of just how immense the freakout will be when it’s actually spring instead of this fake February spring we’ve been enjoying. Once I got to work I knew I was doomed to be a slacker all day because KonaLad’s Kona had already claimed a prime spot in the bike room. This was bad, because it stripped away my status as an early bird, and without that I’m nothing! Just a late bird. And the late birds don’t get any worms. The guilt really set in when I went back down at the end of the day and guess what? The Kona was still there! Oh the shame. Luckily it only lasted about as long as it took to ride out of the garage into the sunshine, and then I tra-la-la’d all the way home.

The other day someone I don’t know very well said that I was always smiling. This really surprised me, as I don’t see myself that way. I actually have this self-impression that I’m really annoying to be around. Call it kid-sister psychosis – in my mind’s eye I’m always that 6-year-old, pigtailed little booger who could sit for an hour with my finger an inch away from my sister’s shoulder, saying, “But I’m NOT touching you!” So it’s kind of nice when people say things that make me think they can tolerate my presence. And I have been a little extra chipper lately, due to all these exciting things on the horizon that are distracting me. An upcoming trip, some awesome rides in the not-too-distant future, and also the fact that I’ve fallen in love! With this little redhead I met on the internets:

lookit my face! you cannot resist me.

If all goes well he’ll be an official SurlyMutt sometime next  month. This guy has spent his whole life tied to a tree, which, if I think about it too long, makes me want to curl up on the floor and cry. So I’m not thinking about that – I’m just thinking about the 1050 good things that are going on right now and enjoying every second of them.

Strung Hams, Stuka Divebombers and Leftist Arguments

3 Feb

Tonight I’m tired and sore. Words take on shape and rhythm of slow winter ride… slow choppy first choppy then longer smooth.

Personal trainer last night; ouch; first time on hamstring machine; ride in today double ouch, everything sore.

Trucker’s been making weird noise lately; sort of a low warble, from the front wheel, only at high speed such as going down hill; noise reminiscent of a Stuka, striking fear into the huddled groups of bus waiters who crouch in terror as I rip by; new brake pads, clean rims, cleaned out inside of fender (ugh), cleaned and greased front skewer; no more Stuka; does anyone else remember Stuckey’s restaurants, used to be ubiquitous through the midwest; Stuka or maybe more Sturmovik?

Have gotten used to bikers breezing by without so much as a halloo – what pisses is when they passes with this disses in a dangerous spot; plain old annoying. A few months ago I was daydreaming and didn’t say ‘bike left’ to a walker lady and she went apeshit as I whizzed past, yelling after me. Sometimes the whole act seems to possess me with a feeling of not only duty but of timing. If you yell out too early, you must needs yell, and that rarely comes across well; if you wait too long, within five feet or so of them, then you risk startling them. This morning I got behind a nice biker lady in Eastlake and together we wove through the gnarly traffic (what was up with Eastlake this morning?). Surviving, we pulled onto the Fred Hutch hill and then she pulled over to let me go – just as I was about to say bike left. We shared a smile and a good morning. Now, that’s a much better way to pass. And I will say, a chap in full team kit blew past me on the Burke this evening and took the time to slow down at my side and say hello… very classy! Sometimes in the semi-dark on the Burke, what I’m trying to say, is that failing having a Stuka noise maker when you stealth past another biker it can be somewhat startling, especially if it’s in a dicey sitch such as a crosswalk.

Sunruse

1 Feb

Oh boy! I put on new brake pads this weekend (Kool Stop Tectonics, for those riders who “Rock the Earth’s Shifting Plates!”) and dialed them in super tight. It’s like riding a new bike. The old pads were so worn down in back it was mostly sparks from the metal-on-metal grinding, and in front there was so much junk/metal embedded in the pads there same story, sparks. Plus the fronts needed some serious toe jamming (squealed like a stuck-up pig) while the back ones virtually didn’t work. So not the safest contraption.

Today however, along with a freshly oiled chain, I felt stylin’ while mile-in. It was supposed to be rainy, but instead I took this snap:

poyple moyning eater

While faster bikers whizzed by. Man I’m about to get a complex. Everyone else is cranking at 20+ and all I could manage this morning was a 15mph average. Oh well I’ll pick it up.

Then, all the harping last Friday about how nicely sunny/warm our ride home was along with the smugness of a moisture-free morning (well, environmental moisture… don’t ask) turned inevitably to some carping tonight as it started raining. Turns out it looked a lot worse from my desk than it wound up being in person. So, not too bad, rain gear was kicking in… what was bad were the two cars (both T-bone side-ons) who almost hit me in the rainy darkness. Oy!

Other than those near misses, within blocks of each other along Eastlake, it was smooth sailing home. Stopped raining ’bout midway. The knee was hurting again, unfortunately. Gone is the sort of kneecap pain from a few months ago that the saddle height fix seemed to address nicely, a localized pinpoint pain where it felt like my kneecap was going to pop like the lid on a new vacuum-packed jar of grape jelly. In its stead is a super sore, lactic-acid feel above and below the knee area, just a general soreness that never seems to go away, even with reduced activity. So, another knee jerk reaction I gotta solve. I’m hoping that some of the new stretching routines I’m trying along with some strength training in the gym (especially the exercises that isolate one leg then the other to help overall synching/balance) will help. And that’s enough about my knees.