Friday, July 31, 2009

RAGBRAI 2009 Photos

Thought I'd get these out here for your perusal. I have a few more stored on my cell phone that aren't yet more to follow

Enjoy! - D

Monday, July 27, 2009

Where the heck am I?

Jeez. Been so busy I forgot to write.

Well, this will be a quick update. I swear, I'll write more later. There are so many things I want to put in my blog, and so little time lately. I feel I've been neglecting my reader(s), and I feel a bit bad. No worries, though.

RAGBRAI was great, and a good time was had by all. I rode Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. My wife surprised me by offering (tentatively) to sag next year. It would be great! She even offered to sag all week (yowza!) but I'm not sure how we'd hold up camping for six days. Maybe we start out slow, hm?

I'm still working on the Bleriot, ever so slowly. I finally got around to ordering the Shimano Nexus hub from Bikeman, come to find out they are out of stock. They have the premium hub for another thirty bucks, so I figured why the hell not. Hopefully they'll get my e-mail, since it's been messed up for the past few weeks. They have been having technical problems, but folks have been getting messages returned with 'recipient e-mail full'. I've been doing some electronic purging, hopefully that will get the message flowing again.

I've been swamped at work, which is a double-edged sword. Swamped, bad...job security, good. I'll just roll with it for now.

Still trying to sell my house in Minden. We dropped the price, and got zero response. I feel like we're trying to sell ice cubes to Eskimos here. I'm sure if my house was a foreclosure (read: significantly under the fair market value), it'd be gone in a week. Vultures.

I have RAGBRAI pics and stories, I swear they will come later. Even though I look calm on the surface, I'm paddling like mad! -D

Friday, July 17, 2009

RAGBRAI 'round the corner!

Sunday marks the first day of RAGBRAI!

I'll be riding Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. We will be starting at the Gene Leahy Mall in downtown Omaha, riding over the pedestrian bridge around Lake Manawa to the trailhead. Since this is my commute route, it's somewhat familar to me.

I made a list last year of the stuff I should be taking along. It may be somewhat informative, or amusing depending on your point of view.

flashlight lightsticks batteries koozie band-aids ibuprofen towel bike shorts bike shirts handkerchiefs headwraps gloves butt cream sunscreen trash bags TP ziplock bags bug stuff chair bars CASH +$150 shorts sleep wear t-shirts hat keens underwear tubes CO2 patch kit minitools multitool jacket rain jacket cell phone charger cell phone RAGBRAI wristbands water bottles pillow eyedrops toiletries moist wipes contact solution extra contacts glasses prescription sunglasses bike shoes socks IBU profen cream RAGBRAI materials and maps store list D-cell batteries Cash/ID ice food (bars, jerky,etc) flip-flops earplugs bike light plastic tarp bungee cords

It's a wonder there will be room enough in the RV to haul all this stuff. I have to explain a few of these items. Some are no-brainers...yes, definitely bring TP, along with moist wipes. Butt cream, necessary. Last year, rider Fred wore boxer shorts under his bike shorts and severely chapped his ass. We spent at least an hour looking for chamois cream so he could continue the ride. Store list? I have no idea. Earplugs, never know when the couple in the tent next door will decide to fornicate, loudly. Note I've mentioned CASH several times. It's amazing how fast it disappears on RAGBRAI (so much pie, so little time). Painkillers and food? Necessary. Lightsticks? Well, they're just so fun to play with. Beer isn't on the list, but it certainly is implied. I didn't break anything last year, but I'm bringing a full complement of tools, patch kit, and tubes and inflation devices. You just never know.

This trip we are tenting it. Although we have an RV hauling the gear, we are sleeping outside. I pulled the ole 'Ozark Trail' Walmart special last week and the wife and I set it up to seam seal it and just generally check it out. It's one of those family size tents with the external tent poles. Both of us struggled with it and finally managed to get the damn thing up. It's a few years old, last time I had it out it leaked, and it just generally looked (and smelled) rough. My lovely wife, whom is also quite wise, casually mentioned that it might be a good idea to procure a new tent. After much deliberation, I decided to pick up a 3-man lightweight Eureka dome tent. Set up is a snap, and it fits into a nice compact package. It should do the trick, and quite nicely.

Did I forget anything? Guess I'll find out Sunday night :>) -D

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Death Ride 2009

Oh yeah, this is definitely under consideration for next year. The 29'er would be great for this. I learnt of this from my old blogging buddy Gravelo, who unfortunately can't make it for RAGBRAI this year. He happened to mention something about doing Guitar Ted's Death Ride, and I immediately imagined the Motor City Madman astride some kind of flamed-out, super-macho, super-lugged monster tired mountain bike with antler handlebars, guns a-blazin', Gibson Byrdland a-wailin' I got you in a stranglehold bay bayyyy....

Rides down loose gravel and B-level minimum maintenance roads? Yeah, that's an adventure ride in itself. And any page that links to Guns America, the NRA, and SPAM?? KICK - ASS.

Now this looks like a good time!


Random acts of volunteerism

I got asked to volunteer again. While I was locking my bike up in the parking garage. Really.

So there I was, locking my bike to the bike rack in the parking garage and this lady walks up to me. Introduces herself as 'Susie' and hands me this postcard. It's for the Omaha Marathon, Half-Marathon, and 10K, September 27, 2009.

Jeez, I'm too big and fat for a marathon runner.

Turns out they need volunteers, and they want bike riders to ride along and escort the runners. Since Susie saw me dressed in bike clothes, with a bike helmet locking a bike in a bike rack, she assumed correctly :>). Susie asked me to go out to the website and drop her a line if I was interested.

It also happens that Susie is the marathon race director, and works for UP. So I went ahead and sent her an e-mail, asking for more info.

I figure if she's the Race Director of the Omaha Marathon, she might also be fairly high up at UP as well. Doesn't hurt to make contacts :>)