Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Cyclic Traditions

Out with the old in with the new?'s amazing that one day every year creates such a fuss, not to mention the drunken traditions. New Years Day is just another day in the passing of time, which is truly only another mark on a cyclic chart to inform us of our relative age compared to others or mark an event that has passed. Age as we know it has nothing to do with eating habits, weight, physical health, smoking, drinking, lard ingestion, current state of mind, or stress, but it does seem to weigh heavily on some people's opinion of appearance and social status. We even have odd sayings about age - my favorite is "Act your age," which is hard to figure out since there is young, old, and the rather broad neither-world in between. To top that off there is no defining line to separate any of these. Personally I feel young so when someone says, "quit acting like a kid" or "act your age" I not sure why since I am acting my age according to me - young that is. Then again I find it rather insulting if someone labels me old, since I figure if and when I ever feel old then I will most likely have a shovel in-hand digging my grave.
From 20081231

Everything is cyclic...minutes, hours, days, years, life, and of course the two wheels I love to spin endlessly. So as we continue the circle of life together I hope your wheels remain flat free and you are young at heart in the coming cyclic event we have labeled 2009.


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Snow Fish?

The riding days have been more adventurous here lately since snow has decided to accumulate in a series of storms over the last several weeks...I love it since we rarely have snow here on the ground for more than a day and I miss having it after living in Montana for most of my life. The down side is that people here have no clue (and I mean they are stupidly clueless) about driving on snow, which means fear for your life much more so on the streets. Also most people here can not seem to grasp that riding a bike in snow is an option and fun...I get some crazy comments and looks.
From 20081223

Riding in the winter just takes a wee more thought and preparation about clothing and warmth options. Layering is key, just like it is for any winter sport. Hands and feet, which seem to be the most difficult to keep warm, to play in the cold you need to pay for quality in my opinion and many experiences. For example, I keep the feet toasty with my Lake winter boots and a quality pair of wool sock...I have yet to experience cold toes with this combo in temps down in the teens.
From 20081223

On a recent adventure I was just riding along and...WHAM!!! I hit something under the snow which popped up whacked my pedal. Upon closer observation, I realized I had come across the elusive Snow Fish and it appeared stunned after I ran it over.
From 20081223

After a few minutes though the Snow Fish seemed OK and I coaxed it off the trail (which no sane cyclist would be on anyway) and back into its native environment...
From 20081223

In snow I also think that riding a single-speed (SS) is the best option since derailleurs and shift cables seem to get a bit iffy with snow and ice on them. Tire choice is something to think about also and running good grippy tires and low air pressure is the best, but as you can see I get away with tires that have a very low tread design. I've also found that Stan tubeless sealant works very well in the cold - I have yet to figure out what is puncturing my tires in the snow but no flats yet.
From 20081223

Yes winter riding is a tad more fun than building cholesterol plaque in the arteries in the Lazy Boy all winter.
From 20081223