Wednesday, February 28, 2007

cool stuff / hot stuff



venerating the mundane; ride bike to auto mechanics and then drive bike home. the steamroller where its not often seen.

cool stuff: let me fess up. i'm new to the fixie thing. it took some years of ss riding and racing and then a summer of serious consideration before moving over. i don't have room here for the superlatives associated with fixie riding. those who ride fixed know and those who don't still know the pleasure of the bike. we're all covered.

back to the cool; today while snaking the fixie in the slush, snow, and water of this beautiful day i had the opportunity to focus on my track stands. steep learning curves make me feel alive and engaged and this learning curve is steep. it made me think of all the fun i had working on my skid all winter. in fact yesterday saw my best efforts. fresh, greasy snow on mostyn place. allowed me to lay out a sinuous skid of true beauty. the sounds of glee the emanated from me caught the attention of some pedestrians. so that they would know what i was so happy about i brought the steamroller back up to speed and laid out another long and beautiful skid.

hot stuff: my car the 'hottest' wheels around won't be so hot. those who have endured summer road trips with me will be happy to know that my air conditioning has been fixed. turned out that the previous mechanics [from before i owned it] had not recharged the system after bleeding it. this may not be the best news for the planet [greater fuel consumption] but it does mean that shuttles to and from races will be done in greater comfort this year.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

for your viewing pleasure

found this at the always worth dropping in on fixed.org.au aka anti-coast. it aint surfin with dynamite but the camera work is exceptional.

reinventing mantario



now that's cross.

so i've long felt that the mantario trail could be ridden. i thought however that because of the exceptionally rugged terrain it would be best done on trials bikes, or light weight bmx's. seeing what hal has posted at mucr [borrowed from blackbird] i'm thinking that mantario albeit being 67 km long may be doable on cross bikes. maybe on some super long summer day when the sun never seems to set.

Monday, February 26, 2007

renegotiation



a couple of weeks ago i had said to my good friend tomek and a few others that the universe and i were entering a period of re-negotiation. this is neither grandiose nor forboding. nor is it insignificant. it just is and it is not unlike what we do each day with each action and thought. at least that is the way i feel.

some of what i have determined.

i require less; i can give more.



from 'some of the dharma' by jack kerouac

"day by day
haggard and dull signs on
the sheen of this skin---
the sheath of proud self
cracks, the sword rusts,
the swordsman falls sighing
in the fault sour sea.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

apple i heart u


its been more than a week since apple sent me, free of charge, a replacement ipod for the one i dropped and broke. yes, i dropped it. i broke it. i clearly told them that i dropped it and broke it. and they replaced it f.o.c..

apple, that was cool. and i promise to be more careful.

postscript: tonight i was listening to the democracy now podcast, something that i dearly missed during the brief period i was without the ipod, they reported, among a good many other things, that since 9/11 the number of prime-time t.v. depictions of torture has increased from 4 anually to over 100. wtf. and where it used to be the bad guys unsucessfully torturing the good guys now depictions are almost universally of good guys using torture sucessfully against the bad guys.

well kids i was happy to not have watched tv during the last three years. now i am overwhelmingly thankfull that i do not, and the kids do not, at least during the half of their live s they spend here, have to deal with somehow accepting torture as part of an evening's entertainment.

crazy.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

thought



my life does not swirl around me as much as it swirls within me. 'it' is not either / or.

another.

i am an eddy into which things flow and rest momentarily before mostly moving on. i am riffle, a slight disturbance in life's flow as it moves over and around me. i am a dam which holds back the flow and force of life.

i am none of these things, for although much of what i am is comprised of water molecules i am not water. i am, metaphorically, all of these things.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Sunday, February 18, 2007

24 hrs of ass



'super couple' paddy and naomi in transition.



the one and only tenacious v would be a ringer at ian & donna's.



lap one offered the chance of a group photo. pedestrian bridge assiniboine park.



paddy descends onto the river for one of two non-bridge assisted crossings of the assiniboine.



the fort gary posse en masse.


for me it was 12 hrs of ass or what my favorite librarian, hal [aka: alberto], would say - 'half ass.'

the last racer i saw last night was hal, coming in frost covered after his second solo lap of the night. i was packed and on my way home when we ran into each other.

just before midnight a thought began to form: 24 hrs of ass was immoderate and that no good could come of pushing through the night. so here i was, about twenty minutes into my eighth lap [kms 140-160] and feeling great. i was having an awesome solo lap. it was cold - go figure. my neck was sore - go figure. and my right knee was troubled by the fixed gear on the decents - go figure.

my longest ride prior to this was 10hrs and i had never ridden more than 3 hrs on my fixie. i felt that 12 hrs of ass was an accomplishment. what remained was recovery. so i sought out all of the other riders to say good night and politely bow out from the rest of the evenings festivities which included movies and hot dog roasts. fortunately i ran into all, including mr. dr, aka chris, aka race organizer, aka host who was heading out for lap nine. whether or not any one else got in a ninth lap remains to be seen. at this point however chris was securing his lock on the solo race. i cannot forget to thank rachel - chris's wife - for being a wonderful hostess.

oh i almost forgot the 'race within a race' in ian and donna's basement. jagermesiter, micheal jackson's thriller, sound recording equipment. i think the picture forming in your mind tells the story.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

24 hrs of .....

all my horoscopes say i should clean house today. but i will be on my bike for the next 24hrs. perhaps its time for the internal broom. i'll have plenty of saddle time to get into the corners and under the furniture.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

best vid ever!

ok, i could'nt figure out how to poach it. so go to how to avoid the bummer life and watch the video posted on feb 14th. trust me. you will like this.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

forecast for this weekend



endorphin and exhaustion blunted pain. 24 hrs of ass[iniboine]. through the west end, along the river and through the forest and back. 'endless' loops on my steamroller. it will be good. the weather looks great.

prelude to valentine's day



love will not be found in calculation;
only in compassion will it be discovered
and borne in a way that can be maintained.

i have karmic debts to repay to this world.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

putting a little buzz out



i've sat on this long enough. from the inspired imaginings of dr. mr. [aka the editor] art for my hiaku cross.

more to come.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

in this age of airbrushing and waxing.......

i feel i should apologize for my hairyness. odd.

not that squirrel requested pics if my tattoos but i thought i might post with descriptions. btw his cycling tattoo gallery is well worth a visit if you are a fan if ink, cycling ink, and especially if you are looking for inspiration for new work.



lotus on right calf. symbolizing the beauty that arises from the muck of life. this beauty is, i believe, to be found in all beings.



outside of left arm. this buddhist mantra 'om mani padme hung' encircles the arm. the mantra is also known as the 'jewel in the lotus' and continually reminds me that we each have within us the capacity for understanding, peace, truth, love, enlightenment. essentially the jewel of the buddhas teaching is within the lotus which emerges from the muck and dark waters to bloom in the air, sun and lights of the water's surface.


inside left arm .



back of left arm.

ink planned: buddhist knot between shoulder blades at base of neck; anagram of my name, my daughter's name and my son's name for right arm; bike tattoo for left calf will probably be a 17 tooth ultegra cog and perhaps a ring with chain connecting the two; track bike in silouette probably on chest.

my idea of 'the five year plan.'

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

music

this posting has been rattling around in my head over the last couple days seeking a way out. here it has escaped into the world of articulation. it is self indulgent, but no more than the very idea of a blog itself.

the other day i was trying to find out if the phrase 'vancouver divorce' from gordon downie's album coke machine glow had any specific meaning. while seaching various online dictionaries, [wikipedia, urban dictionary, google itself] i discovered an online article on divorce music: ie music with the theme of divorce as the subject. or, apparently music produced while the artist was going through divorce.

it is worth reading for any fan of music. it is worth reading for anyone who has, or is, going through divorce or 'irreconcilable separation.' what i found in interesting was reference to two albums by artists who i greatly enjoy. beck's sea change was an album that m and i discovered just as our marriage was coming to its end. we loved that music and shared its beauty as we moved on into the initial stages of a new relationship which carried the joys and sorrows of our previous 18 yrs into interminable future. although i understood at the time that the music had a resonance with me, and the space we were in, i was suprised to discover that it was in fact a 'divorce album.'

the second album was one of many by richard buckner that have carried me through highs and lows over the past three years, ie: my post marriage period. buckner's, the hill, resonated deeply with me as i was, for a time, consumed by loss, fear, sorrow, envy etc, the principal elements of the story told by this exceptional piece of music. it is a retelling, to music, of edgar lee masters, spoon river anthology.

the article in question makes reference only, however, to buckner's devotion & doubt. this album is, like all buckner's work, exceptional. curiously though it did not fall into a 'my story through another's words' relationship to me. perhaps it is the bleakness of the work that the author of the article refers to. by the time i was listening to devotion and doubt i was far more in tune to the sensitive optimism and sophisticated joyfulness of 'dents and shells.'

Sunday, February 4, 2007

cabin fever




cabin fever is the name of an annual film festival at cinematheque. free of charge kids movies, retro candys, that unique cinematheque atmosphere. today's movie was one of the oddest, most engaging yet. the 5000 fingers of dr. t (1953) written by dr suess, was an absolute gas, the kid's totally dug it. it was, because it was made 20 yrs earlier, perhaps quirkier than willy wonka and the chocolate factory (1971).

two weeks without an ipod

the two weeks without an ipod ended on wednesday. yesterday i resolved that i will ship my ipod back for repair we'll se what the cost of my fumble and its smack on the floor will cost me. life without it was fine but i'm missing the podcasts.

Saturday, February 3, 2007

ahhh.....

....what do you do when you wake up and its -47 c / -56 f with windchill. why you take the opportunity to test your improved cold weather gear since your toes have regained most of their nerve sensitivity after being mildly frozen the previous weekend when it was -37 with windchill.

winnipeg, nuff said.

Friday, February 2, 2007

flight

leaving winnipeg i discovered that the good folks at h.q. had generously [post script: the good folks at air canada inadvertantly] provided me seating in executive class for my flight to and from toronto. i was thankful. i felt priviledged and awkward. or perhaps, i was just thankful that i felt awkwardly priviledged.

i am certain, however, that i was the first, if not the last, executive class passenger to simultaneously thumb through the surly catalogue while listening to the dirty three on their i shuffle.

i penned hiaku.

descend home again
breathe out this city absorbs
i was a child here