Friday, October 31, 2008

Danny Chew Article.

Much like my article in Cyclocross magazine on Hebe, I used somebody else's hard work and determination for an article in the new Urban Velo.

The subject: DANNY CHEW.

Issue 10 Download. I cant help but think of all the time I would save if all magazines were downloadable! I would never have to ride my lazy ass over to bookstore and sit there and read all of their magazines without actually buying any. That would be pretty nice.

Anyway, enjoy.

Coming up: Pictures of Somali Halloween.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Dont buy a car if you cant put air in the tires.

Seriously. Yes it is true that at one point in my life I got a flat in a borrowed car and had to ride my bike back to Amy's house (pre cell phones) to get her to come change it for me. I was impressed by her skills. She also opens jars for me.

Anyway, Friday night we were driving to the USGP in KY. I was crammed into a shoebox in the back of Ed's car for the entire trip, but that is another story. We stopped at a gas station, and I didnt get out of the car because it was POURING COLD RAIN. We see Craig run out of the gas station and give us the "1 minute" gesture, as we prances toward a caravan. There is a mildly obese mid western woman following him (with umbrella). We watch Craig fill up this woman's tires in her freaking minivan (with license plate that says "WOW GOD".

We watch this from the inside of Ed's car. But not after we watch the woman get inside of her car, with her umbrella and leave Craig in the pouring rain to fill up her tires. We were like "maybe she is going to hand him the umbrella through the window.... Nope.

So where does this take us? People who NEED lights that indicate when they need to put air in their tires are morons?? People with umbrellas are selfish? (this is something that I have stuck to for years) People in Ohio love god? Craig is too nice? In her defense, apparently she offered Craig A DOLLAR as a thank you. "can you please use me AND insult me?"

Anyway there were only 3 highlights to the weekend.

1) Talking to Todd Wells about bmx and it turns out that he came down to Pittsburgh from NY and RODE OUR TRAILS a few times over the years. What a crazy small world that he was like "oh Pittsburgh, did you ever ride PUSH?" and I was like "yeah dude that was like 5 years of my life."

When he lapped me 2 hours later I wanted to be like "Hey dude, we are bmx bros."

2) Going to dinner with the Pittsburgh guys. 7 dudes hanging out who would probably not talk to each other if it werent for bike racing. Best part of the conversation was when 2 dudes were telling Marine boot camp stories and then Euro Mike chimes in with "I was listening to NPR the other day..." Then Angry Andy talking about Obama taking away his guns or whatever, then Mike talking about going on a zen retreat for 10 days and not talking the entire time all while Pflugger is probably thinking up some crazy shit he can do to make is mountain bike faster or more unique.

Andy confirmed that the Dumbass who tried making the 15224 look ill totally made it up. This could be highlight 2.5 cause I was really happy to hear that it wasnt true. I am going to star the rumor right now that the police pulled over Santonio Holmes because he fit the description of the attacker (tall black dude.. who else?) So Ms Ashley Todd, not only did you lose any credibility you might ever have in your entire life, you made the Steelers lose too.
Andy yes, 15224 and Pittsburgh hate you.

I am going to make that an entire weekend highlight, upping it to 4.

4) Not getting lapped Sunday and feeling pretty good riding a cross bike with a bunch of REALLY fast dudes. Elliston, the Pabst guys, and I were looking around on the line and the PA guys were the only ones without carbon tubulars. Bill and I are from Steel towns, so we are holding it down with METAL RIMS!!!! The philly dudes are probably just drunk.

Below is a video from 1997 that I may have posted before, but I dont care cause these were the freaking glory days. Pennsylvania trails used to rule. If I paid more than 12/month of internet maybe I would be able to watch it too? Fast forward to 8minutes and 6 seconds in

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

New non UCI cyclocross callup rules.

For non UCI races, apparently some promoters have been using to establish a start order, but I would like to recommend promoters follow these new rules.

1) First row is reserved for cyclists who have blogs in which they refer to themselves as "pro" bike racers. Yes they are posting from their day jobs as bike mechanics and computer geeks, but because they get lapped by Ryan Trebon twice a year they are now "pro." The front row is for these fine people.

2) Depth of wheels. The next row is reserved for those man enough to rock the 60mm rims, the trispokes, the disc wheels (seen it),( the Rev-x's dont count due to the extreme risk factor and social suicide of riding them) etc. Obviously if you are willing to put 3000 dollar wheels on the line, you are training harder than the most euro cross racers.

3) Smell. This is easy enough. The more liniment you rub all over your body, the more euro you look, and the faster you will go. You can be smelled from the last row by the official with the whistle. Move up.

4) Skinsuit to temperature ratio: The more inappropriate your skinsuit is for the weather, the further up you go. Long sleeves with a feed zone in the race because it is so hot? Move up. Shorts in KC in December. Move up. There is usually a direct correlation between the liniment and skinsuit rule.

5) Style off the bike. Can you be mistaken for (what people think) a not at work bike messenger (looks like) when you are not racing? Visible tattoos and piercings? Cycling caps and Chrome bags? Again, the final call ups are for you.

Tie breakers go straight to the hottness of the girlfriend which you brought to the race to cheer/pickup your jacket from the start grid. (Just realized that I usually have Mayhew or Ed, lose and lose again.)

Compound any of these for a guaranteed front row start.

Monday, October 13, 2008

New stuff = fun.

Logistic nightmare: Bum ride down from the Rowley's. Meet up with hebe after race, bum place to stay (thanks as always) and a ride back to race venue sunday. Hope to see Andy Gorski to bum ride home after race sunday. Have backup plan of mailing stuff home and doing a 180 mile single day ride on tuesday, chew style.

Iron cross lite. Old stuff. I have done it before and it is a regular cross race. Good times, but old stuff. Got dropped from the leaders, Hammakers chain got dropped from his gears and simonson won with flat bars.

Iron Cross regular = new stuff. The iron cross was the same amount of fun, the same ups and downs, the same pain and glory as an 8 hour race, but in half the time! That cannot be beat.

I decided last week that if I want to be a serious bike racer, I should get a Co2 thinger. I hate buying disposable stuff. It is like bottled water, you are paying a per fee use each time. I could have just carried a pump, but I would have lost like 3 more minutes. ughhh. Randy hooked me up with one that he won, and I was on my way. On my way to a freaking flat.

Long story short: Flatted 5 miles in. Picked my way through people for an hour. I am guessing around 120 people or so. Started being told I was in the top 20. Worked with Gorski a ton to work our way through people. Flatted agin, but right at an aid station and changed it with a floor pump. Finally found my way to 8th placish overall, 5th in the "senior men" category. Gunnar beat me on a single speed, and a couple of old guys finished ahead of me. It was hard going from the back to the front, but I got to ride my own ride and push myself instead of having my pace dictated by faster dudes, which may have resulted badly considering that we were bombing dirt roads at like 45 mph all day.

I wish there were more races like this.

Chew update: he hasnt eaten in 4 days and has lost 16lbs. Total body cleanse

Monday, October 06, 2008

6 Spinergy Rev X wheels spotted this weekend.

2 Saturday at the Hagarstown race.
4 Sunday at the Month of Mud race in grove city. 2 of those were in our car.
The Rev x's were rumored to have catastrophic failures, but chew has gotten 20,000 miles out of a pair, and Babik couldnt put the finishing blows on a pair during our "as many people ride as the low temperature" rides (ok it was really 8 degrees 4 people).

Anyway... One would think that racing the same people over and over every weekend would get boring. You can pretty much look at results and figure about where you would be in a cross race. If you cant do that, will literally do it for you, letting you put the bikereg preregistered list into it and they give the results of the race in advance.

This is all based on "math" and "logic" or whatever. Every once in awhile though, you have a good race, and somebody has a bad race and it works the other way. Last year, I remember a race where the dude who was supposed to win got dropped and a dude who was on a borrowed bike beat me in a sprint. Cross results wouldnt have predicted that.

Yesterday was similar. Poor ruggs tried some rocky IV type stuff and moved to remote Warren PA for super secret training and bachelor life. Something like that anyway. So of course we have done much battle in the past few years as we have become faster dudes together. Everytime it is awesome and fun to race somebody, even if you have raced them dozens and dozens of times before. It never gets old.

Speaking of getting old:
The nutella I had expired in 2008 despite everybody in the car trying to convince me that it was 2003. I bought it at the expired food store, and the first jar I had you couldnt tell the last number. I checked the second jar when I got home and can confirm it was only a few months expired, not a half a decade.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

financial realization.

There was a Target commercial on the TV the other night that was actually kind of right on. They know that most people are financially hosed right now, and a smart advertising person sold them a good idea: sell people things they need cause they arent buying things that they want.

So it is basically like "things you are going to pay a reoccurring fee for, just buy once and do it yourself." "gym membership" - shows a guy riding a bike. "hair cut" shows somebody cutting their own hair. Etc.

This is a great way to save money for sure. Those of us that are cheap enough to have gotten by for years doing these things (I have paid for 2 haircuts in the past 15 years, one of which was at "THE STRAIGHT EDGE BARBER" the other was 16 cents at a czech barber college) know how financially beneficial they are. (5 grand over 15 years?)

Honestly though, as one of the cheapest people ever, I feel threatened by this. If the average Target shoppers are hurting so badly that they need to live like my barely working self, does that mean that I am going to have to start working a lot more to continue to meet my low standard of living? This might be a true sign of the times.

Imagine going to work 40 hours a week at a job that you hate, paying 4 bucks a gallon for gasoline to get there, only to come home and not be able to afford the things that jobs are supposed to afford you. Wow, glad I came home from working all day to eat peanut butter sandwiches for dinner, after eating them for lunch, followed by eating peanut butter french toast for breakfast.

That scenario is like one step lower than what they are currently advocating.

PS. target if you read this (that one post the GM dude seriously read)... please pay me to film me walking around my house this winter wearing a parka and 3 pairs of long underwear and explain that you only need to buy these items once in exchange for 10 degrees on the thermostat at a reoccurring monthly bill.