Wednesday, December 30, 2009

nice end to the year

Broken lines, broken strings,
Broken threads, broken springs,
Broken idols, broken heads,
People sleeping in broken beds.
Ain't no use jiving
Ain't no use joking
Everything is broken.

in a fitting end to '09, i ate shit on an icy run at granite peak aboard my trusty jim rippey model snowboard, and broke my wrist. same one i had screwed together and re-assembled with a piece of cadaver bone back a couple summers ago. naturally, it is my right hand, so in addition to being refamiliarized with that unique brand of sickeningly sharp ache that keeps a guy up at nite, i also am enjoying the inconvienience that accompanies your dominant hand being less than dominant. new examples of this pop up all the time, such as trying to hold a cup of coffee, or open a sticky door. sweet.

not even my steven colbert wriststrong bracelet could save me.

so . . . . . . roller riding on the aero-bars is in order, maybe some running. brite side might be found in the fact that my swimming plan for the off-season is on a 6 week hold. :) and i can still XC ski, but it is gonna have to be no-poles sk8-skiing exclusively. a season of no-pole sk8-skiing is perhaps something only a singlespeeder would look forward to.


Saturday, December 26, 2009

the best thing about swimming

gretchen decided to go rogue on our new-year resolution, and dragged my sorry ass to the pool a week early.

it has been a little while since i was at the pool, and i forgot how much swimming has in common with pounding yourself on the knuckles with a giant hammer. that being, both of them feel so darn good once you stop doing it.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

you can take the fondo out of italy . .

but can you keep the italy in the fondo ??

i have watched and admired the gran fondo's since the days when they would be picured in winning magazine. now, after levi L's acclaimed gran fondo out in cali, they are popping up all over the place, including wisconsin. my initial impression was crazy-hell enthusiasm, but since then a few people have given me pause to wonder . . . . . .can this scene really transplant to america ??

i always perceived the whole bit about them to be true spectacles of gentleman-racing. probably "won" by a hi-profile recent ex-pro, but civilly and superbely and classily ridden by the masses. i know a lot of bike riders, but who other than russel fits that description on this side of the pond ?? what are the other 7999 guys gonna look like, and more importantly - RIDE like ??? !! ???

i dunno. maybe it'll be great, or maybe it'll be a nutcase crashfest of american hacks. maybe the only sure thing is i should really go to italy.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

hate the game, not the playa

enuf with the snowshoing, already.

people, walking on water frozen or otherwise, is not a legitimate sporting activity. need proof ?? ask a 3 year old what is cool about snow - he or she can tell you it is fun to slide on. need further proof ?? how bout his:

look familiar ?? now, i am sure this seemed a right fine idea at the time. " hey, let's make some shoes for walking on water, like snowshoes !! " but, sometimes you need to step away from a good idea. here is another attempt:

let's look at that again, just so we are clear:

there is a reason that instead of constucting a giant reed bubble, and walking to The New World those cats make boats. or outrigger canoes. or reed rafts. or whateverthehell - point being they didn't try and walk here. snow is no different - SLIDE on it, my friends, do not trudge.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

what is that old joke about mopeds . . . . . ???

. . . . something like "riding one is kinda fun - right to the moment somebody sees you doing it ( and yes i know the non-politically-correct versions of the joke, this is a family-friendly blog )".

anyway, there is little point in making fun of triathlons, as evidenced by this photo. plus, if you take every ridiculous part of the cycling world and condense it down - you have the triathlon cycling-market in its pure form. there is swimming involved, and getting off a perfectly good bike to run as well. the whole thing is beyond silly and foolish.

which is perhaps why i am gonna do one this summer.

honestly tho, i am in serious need of some quality time in getting back into some semblance of shape, and doing it from fear of dying in a half-ironman might be just the ticket. and, i have actually done one or two previously. just like the moped story, and tho it pains me to admit it, i had fun (and looked ridiculous). i expect more of the same. i am a horrible excuse for a triathlonist. i cannot swim without a wetsuit holding me up. luckily for me in triahlon-ing it is OK, even encouraged, to cheat by wearing a neoprene canoe on your person. i suck so bad at swimming when i use a kickboard i actually go backwards. pro swim-guru's have been rendered speechless by the shear ugliness of my flailing. back when gretchen and i did the ironman in madison a complete stranger told me i was going to die during our pre-race warm-up ( i am sure she was well intentioned ).

my feet are so wasted from being broken as a result of skateboarding my running is scarcely better than my swimming. i draft medium-speed walkers when i run to conserve energy.

i'd say the bike portion is my strength, but of course i cannot time-trial my way out of a wet paper bag.

on the brite side, it is in my hometown, and despite what you may hear, there are some cool people to be met in the otherwise vile arena of triatholism. in any event it doesn't matter - i stood on the scale the other day and desparate times call for desparate measures. all that flaling in the water that never did anything to me to deserve the abuse i am gonna be giving it, and innocent asphalt who my plodding feet will pummel might make lose a pound, and losing even one at this point instead of gaining another 20 a day like i have been doing will be worth it. Ok it won't be, but i'm doing it anyway.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

if you give a moose a muffin

if you are parent, you probably read that bokk, and the other couple - " If You Give a Mouse a Cookie", etc.

this pic could perhaps be titled "If you give a Snowboarder a Garbagepile".

it isthe launchramp nicky and his buddy came up with in a rush, with the last snowfall. my immediate commentary to it, as sawyer climbed the ladder to the top was " dude, you are going to eat shit so bad". he did not, and it actually sent them down to hit the press-box and following rail-hit pretty nicely. they have moved onto construct modern-day urban ramps, hips, and tow-in hits all over town, but this fine monument to 15 y/o energy remains outside our front door.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

to the laboratory !!

at one time, maybe back in te 90's, i was a bonfide ski-waxing guru. these were te days pre-stone grinding. it was as much alchemy as isaac newton trying to turn mercury vapour into gold. and, probably just as toxic, as we stuck out noses down into swirling chemical fumes and smoke of exotic flouro-carbons and gods knows what.

razor sharp metal scapers, quivers of hi-speed drill mounted brushes kept in hermetically sealed baggies, wax that cost more than heroin, and was more addicting. don't even ask about cost - cost was not an issue. and, pay to let somebody else wax your skiis ??? we would sooner have paid a cuban poolboy to . . . . . . well nevermind. ain't nobody touching the bottoms of my skiis.

but, no mofo ever out-glided my ass at the birkie. that was all that mattered.

nowadays i could give a crap. i'll put on anything, or nothing. things have moved on, and i have not kept up. but, if you want to do a glide-test sometime lemme know. take yer stone grinders and yer paid-for store wax job and i will dust off my old wizard-like madness. you ain't out gliding me if i don't want ya to.

scored a top-o-the-line crazy-hell set of poles today for a c-note at the ski-swap. too cool. ski poles are the only legit use of carbon other than stealth fighters that i know of. time to ski !!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

nicky setting up the winter trainers - 1 outta 2

it did not take much snow for nicky to get motivated to set up the home-trainer scene for himself for the winter. here he is getting a super-sweet little press-box snowboard feature put together for those backyard jib sessions. way nice !!

. . . . . he was a little less successful here, however, in following my suggestion that he get his "bike set up in the studio next to mom's for some trainer-time in front of the teevee". oh well . . . . .

Monday, December 7, 2009

public service anouncement - "snow"

in case nobody noticed, teevee weather forecasting is no longer about forecasting weather. it is about selling teevee advertising time. hence, the "naming" of summertime rainstorms, and wintertime snow flurries. and of course, the insanely over-reaching snow predictions.

these cats, tho

ain't selling no teevee time. bookmark it, and check the little percentage/date/snow amount maps. they are the best guess you are gonna get, and the best guess it is possible to make. they only go 3 days out, cuz guessing anything past that is stupid.

yer all welcome.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

throwing down and living dreams

somehow this weekend nicky managed to insert himself and his little kawi 110 playbike into the popular local x-mas parade. thus, he found himself rocking stylish tweaked extended wheelies down the mainstreet of his hometown, much to the delight of the kids and everybody hanging around the quaint parade, and he didn't even have to resort to throwing candy. plus the cops were stoking and slapped him on the back for his efforts, instead of chasing him into back alleys with their lights on - so what more could a 15 y/o want ?? good work if you can get it, and evidently he takes after his mother and managed to get it.

MK on the other hand, was throwing down herself in a manner most dignified - rocking handel's messiah as a rare freshman member of the chorale, in the ultra-posh debartolo performing art center of notre dame university. gretchen brought her mom down for the performance, and it doesn't get much nicer than that.

the kids are alright, and as my man russell would say - it was a good day.

aaaaaghhhhh my eyes !!

while it is true that i own a couple bikes so cool that grown Nipponese bicycle enthusiasts will throw themselves to the ground and weep with joy for just having seen them, i am a man that believes not only in redemption on the wheel, but retribution. hence, for a portion of the year i ride this horrid monstrosity - call it a form of bike ascetiscm . . . . bordering on bike self-flaggelation.

yes, those are aero-bars ( albeit very small ones ), and even more disturbing, those are an ancient set of powercranks mounted down there on the noodle-like bottom bracket of this poor old vitus. speaking of which, while it is made of aluminum and would by elemental nature normally deserve scorn and ridicule - it avoids that by having been ridden by sean kelly - if your aluminum bike was ridden by sean kelly, go ahaed and give it a pass - otherwise . . . . . . . .

anyway, i dare anybody to come up with a bike more vile than this collection of weirdness. living down there amongst the spiders and cobwebs of the Count-TmonT-Cristo isolation cell it serves as my torture device. it does feature 2 redeeming qualities, however. find them in the blurry photo, and i can get you a professional grade spork for a prize.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

ok, i love to hate on the cowboys, trek, and the yankees . .

. . . as much as the next guy. you do not ride around on a drop-bar mtn bike ( and actually believe it is everybody else who has it wrong ) for 25+ plus years because you like the mainstream.

but i gotta break ranks on the notre dame football team. sure, i am a total coattail bandwagon fan, it is true - to the degree i thought of them before MK went there i reckon i hated on them too. and, just so we are clear - i am still on record for saying the kid "shoulda gone to ripon". but goddammit if that place does not have some serious-ass Style. how much Style ?? get this:

several days before they jettisoned charlie weis and paid him off with a wad of stacks totalling several million like they were in the movie goodfella's, they called up the FAA and had em turn off their private jet's tracking info, so they could conduct job interviews in privacy like Gentlemen.

T-H-A-T, my friends, is style. Style.

mind you, i get the hating. plenty to hate on. but make no mistake, by hating you are being played - hating on the ND football product is by design, and from a media perspective haters and fans both equal $$. and, what ND understands is that while it is good to win, a great thing to win . . . . it is a far far better thing to matter. and matter they do, there can be no denying it. what they do best tho - is matter with Style.

whether it's the stacks-o-ten-thousand-dollar-bills they hand weis out in the garage ( was it 8 million, 18 million - who cares - as if it makes a diff to these guys !! ), the gassed up and ready private jet, turning off the aircraft's tracking device so they can meet prospective coaches in secret like the Illuminati, or even the mountains of free media coverage they pull in for themselves - i don't care which part of the story you look at - those dudes know what the fook they are doing, make no bones about it, and they pull it off like the Corleone family.

Style. nobody is even a distant 2nd.