Saturday, October 29, 2011

Whisky in the jar.

Well, Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA anyway.

Packing up is sort of cathartic, sort of sad. Neither of us slept well last night, i guess anticipating today's hard work...Nearly done.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Not long 'til we're outta here...

Nearly there...nearly.

A few things have been found, or perhaps re-located would be the best way to say it...take this:

The glass was given to entrants at the 2005 singlespeed worlds in State College, PA. To my mind, the best course i've ridden at a sswc, though there have been so many shining examples. The beer is local to that area: it is the last 90 minute IPA i have in the beer store. Savouring it slowly, particularly as the potent 9% will take my head off as exhaustion means i have very little beer capacity.

Lots of things are happening. I need to write up our experiences at the Mugdock round of the 'cross season. I managed to force a 16th place finish. A great race, but again, the weather had left a mud bath for riders to ride in. Persephone is fighting too - for territory. A new feline arrival is causing havoc with established areas. I'm sure it will work out, but i couldn't help but yell an internal "go girl!' as she chased off the much larger male interloper this morning.

I may also have a new role to fulfil soon. It should be fun, but is under wraps at present. Still haven't ridden a bike, but there are more pressing tasks to attend to.

What else....wordpress or typepad? or stick with this? who knows....

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Unpacking & packing.

So i finally got the Maul built up a previous life a time delay this long would have been unthinkable...but so it was cool to get it back together and add the few finishing touches - ti rotor bolts, caliper and brake bolts, bottle cage bolts, headset adjustment bolt, and drop the bars 3mm.

Nope, i havent had chance to get out and has been so damn wet here that is not such a big deal...but i will, soon.

Tomorrow it is 'cross race number 2 for me, 3rd in the season, and one of my favourites: Mugdock!...local riding and a not very 'cross 'cross course...but good fun. I released the Iron Maiden bike from the grip of the concrete like mud that it had been encased in, Han Solo like, since Plean, but didnt have time to do a full clean up job. Talking of Plean, i finally got a write up onto the VC Moulin blog. Check it.

You might notice that the layout and background on this blog have changed again. Somewhere along the line i burnt my bridges and so i lost a shit load of stuff, such as the flickr link window and the nicely organised links i had. Pretty grumpy about all that, but it seems i'm not the only one grumbling about blogger....we'll see how this plays out. I got damn close to shutting the whole thing down....


Perhaps of interest, there is an interview i did with Benji for Singletrack World in the current issue, 69, of Singletrack mag. I'm not clear if you gain much, but there is some history there and a general insight in to what makes me tick - bikewise at is generally a good issue, with interesting tests of the Jones steel diamond frame and the Mukluk from Salsa and various other interesting articles....

Talking of interesting bits, i still need to write up my visit to Ruckus Components in Portland - two interesting and talented guys weaving magic from carbon fibre, and also the Oregon Manifest Constructors competition show.

I'll get to it..

Monday, October 17, 2011

Updates, sort of...

I've been using blogger for some time is inevitable that you start to mess around with the html as you go along. Add a widget here, re-space the content there, add a flickr link etc etc.

I don't know if blogger has thrown the toys out the pram, or whether the mess i made in there was just too much, but recently lots of things haven't been working out. Links and past entires were somewhat penitently buried under the main text and the links were getting unwieldy at best.

So, i tried to do some sorting out and hey presto! everything went sideways.


So here you have my, at best, temporary fix. It may well last long enough to become otherwise. It is 'dynamic' apparently, but lacks links and other widgets...not sure how much that matters or an opinion? Do play around with the layout options if you like.

Meanwhile, i'm collecting my thoughts after a rather messy 'cross's a pic of my most important fan in the mean time

Currently, i am listening to: Talkdemonic - thank you Mr Vernor.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Are you 'cross enough?

The Photo is my wifes. It may well be the last time - or there abouts - i raced 'cross. The year before last, give or take. I'd like to think i was passionate about 'cross, but compared to the zealotry it engenders in some bike racers i'll admit that i'm relatively ambivalent - hence the hiatus. As harsh as that sounds, i do like racing 'cross. It is fast, furious and generally gets a lot of crunched up angst out of the system. If you aren't tasting blood, you probably aren't trying hard enough and to not try hard enough is to miss the point of 'cross entirely.

So tomorrow, i'm going to drag my exhausted, out of shape, weak and soft carcass to Plean for the next round of the Scottish cyclocross series. I may very well race at Mugdock the following weekend as well.

I *will* race my guts out.

To that end, i have a new secret weapon (no, not a bike) that will give me special powers and may offset a little of the weaksauce i am currently bathed in. The bike has been slightly updated: lower, more aggressive, smaller gear, new rear tyre. Better lube the chain, dig out the embrocation and get ready to rumble.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Minneapolis West.

Heading home now. In some ways, it seems to have been a loooong trip. In others, very short. What i would definitely say is it has been highly enjoyable. Portland has a nice way of life: the priorities seem in good order. People, health, food, quality of life issues. I'll be back for sure.
Highlights? Catching up with Sean and family. The Maul, of course!...surpassing all my objectives, aesthetically, and functionally. Awesome!. Riding in sight of Mt Hood. Again, thanks to Kevin and Sean for that one. Doing a little welding with some ti tubes. I'm going to come back to this in a future post. I had chance to catch up with Nick Sande as well - and we reflected on his bike packing trips out of Portland. The area is ripe for that sort of thing, with major differences in climate as you move over the rain shadow of the mountains, east towards Bend.
I also managed a short trip to the Museum of Contemporary Craft to check out the winners of the Oregon Manifest design challenge. Say what you like about expensive, custom commuting bikes, but i fully expect to see some of the design features here trickle down and make your next town bike a whole lot better to use. I also had a great time visiting Ruckus Components. Super bright guys.
I didnt get chance to ride the Mackenzie River trail, which i had been hoping to cram in. No matter, it's not going anywhere... I'm looking forward to seeing my baby and my baby now. Persephone needs a wee hug and a head scratch too. Home soon.

Sunday, October 02, 2011


Wish my ladies were coming with me. A brief sojourn in the Pacific Northwest.