Saturday, August 29, 2009

Hey Patrick...

...those Nitto Dirt Drop bars look really good on that Bleriot frame, don't they?? :>)

The rare and elusive bars made it, along with the headset, stem, and a few other assorted parts. Of course, I had to install them ASAP just to check them out. The headset installation was a bit more difficult than I'd imagined. The crown race would not install onto the steerer tube, no matter how hard I pounded. Usually, all it takes is a screwdriver and a few taps. Not this time. I ended up using some PVC tubing I'd used for shooting 4th of July bottle rockets a few years ago attempting to drive it on. My lovely wife was freaked out by the pounding and cursing noises emanating from the basement. "What the hell are you doing down there?"

Sweating my ass off.

I took some drywall sandpaper and tried to sand the mounting ring down on the steerer tube. Sand, sand, sand, sand, blister. Pound, pound, pound, pound, curse. Sweat some more. Pound some more. Sand, sand, sand, sand, bleed. $#%%^&&@@!!

It just wouldn't slip down over that last half inch of steerer tube.

Finally, I got out the heavy artillery. Yes, I pulled out the Dremel tool and stuck on a sanding drum. After about a minute of sanding around the circumference of the tube I tried again.

Pound. Whack! Pound. Pound. Hey! It looks like it's slipping on. Pound. Ouch! Pound. Pound. Success!

After a quick shower, I assembled the fork and stem to the headset tube and slipped the bar in place. Boy, those bars look nice!

BTW, I just recently placed another order with Riv for a few other 'hardware' items, including brake hangers, cables, a Mark's Rack, and a SaddleSack XS Special. It'll be great!

One last thing...ya gotta look at Patrick's kick ass Bombadil, loaded for bear...


More Bumper Sticker Fun

Inspired by my blogging buddy Gravelo, I found some bumper sticker wisdom...

Caution: I drive like you do!

Strangers have the best candy

Save the Earth, it's the only planet with Chocolate

No, I don't have PMS. I just really hate you.

My mind works like lightning, one brilliant flash and it's gone

I didn't ask to be a princess but if the crown fits...

I'm a cruel and heartless bitch but I’m damn good at it

I brake for scholars, priests, and no apparent reason

Stupidity is not a crime so you’re free to go

" I'm already visualizing the duct tape over your mouth!"
" Watch out for the idiot behind me!"
Buckle up... it makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car
Learn from your parent’s mistakes use birth control.
He who laughs last thinks slowest.
All men are idiots, and I married their king.
Friends help you move; real friends help you move the body.
Very funny Scotty; now beam down my clothes
Saw it, wanted it, threw a fit, Got It!!
Want to get laid? Crawl up a chicken's ass and wait!
Mothers with teenagers know why animals eat their young
We're not old people we're recycled teenagers!
Eternity: Smoking or Non-Smoking?
I wasn't born a bitch; men like you made me that way.
I love to give homemade gifts, which one of my kids do you want
They didn't let me out, they just gave me a day pass!
(Front Bumper) If you can read this, I didn't hit you hard enough.
0-60 in 15 minutes!
100% Irony Free
100,000 Sperm And You Were The Fastest?
186,000 Miles/Second: It’s Not Just A Good Idea, It’s The Law!
3 kinds of people: Those who can count and those who can't.

A Day Without Sunshine Is Like, You Know, Night
A fool and his money are a girl's best friend.

A Waist Is A Terrible Thing To Mind
Abandon the search for Truth; settle for a good fantasy.
According to my best recollection, I don't remember.

Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder...
Beer: It’s Not Just For Breakfast Anymore.
Beer: The Reason I Get Up Each Afternoon

Conserve toilet paper - use both sides.
Conserve water - Shower with a friend
Constipated People Don't Give A Shit.

Cleverly Disguised As A Responsible Adult
Clones are people 2

Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and good with ketchup.
Do not play a leap frog with a unicorn.
Do not put a question mark where God put a period.
Do they ever shut up on your planet?

Don't Be Sexist - Bitches Hate That
Don't believe everything you hear or anything you say.
Don't believe everything you think.
Don't drink and park - accidents cause people.

Elvis Is Dead And I’m Not Feeling Too Good Myself
Energizer Bunny Arrested; Charged With Battery
Enjoy life it's not a dress rehearsal.
Entropy Isn’t What It Used To Be
Eschew Obfuscation
Ever stop to think, and forget to start again?
Every silver lining has a cloud.

Follow your dreams, except the one where you’re at school in your underwear.
For a small town, this one sure has a lot of assholes!
Forbidden fruits create many jams.
Forget World Peace. Visualize Using Your Turn Signal!
Friends don't let friends drive naked!!
Friends Help You Move. Real Friends Help You Move Bodies.

Give your child mental blocks for Christmas.
Go Braless! It will pull the wrinkles from your face.

Graduate Soon! Millions On Welfare Depend On You

God gave man a brain and a penis and only enough blood to operate one at a time.

Gravity- It’s not just a good idea, it's the LAW!
Grow Your Own Dope, Plant A Man
Growing old is inevitable...Growing up is optional.
Gun control is a steady hand.

Help Stamp Out And Eradicate Superfluous Redundancy
Help starve a feeding bureaucrat.
Hey idiot- You're driving a car, not a phone booth
Hey man, you live in America now... speak Spanish!

Honk If You Love Peace And Quiet
Honk If You Want To See My Finger
Honk If You've Never Seen An Uzi Fired From A Car Window

I Do Whatever My Rice Krispies Tell Me To
I do work for food.
I Don’t Have To Be Dead To Donate My Organ
I Don’t Suffer From Insanity, I Enjoy Every Minute Of It

I don't drive fast I fly low.
I don't find it hard to meet expenses. They're everywhere.

I used to think I was indecisive, but now I'm not too sure.

Kids in the backseat cause accidents.... accidents in the backseat cause kids.

Life is not a garden, so quit being a hoe!

Lottery: A tax on people who are bad at math.
Love is grand. Divorce is a hundred grand.
LSD melts in your mind, not in your hands.

Microbiology Lab: Staph Only!
Minds are like parachutes--they only function when open.
Mirrors can't talk. Luckily for you they can't laugh either.
Mistakes are proof that you are trying.
Money Isn't Everything, But It Sure Keeps The Kids In Touch

My Kid Got Your Honor Roll Student Pregnant.
My mother never saw the irony in calling me a son-of-a-bitch.
My opinions may have changed, but not the fact that I am right.
My other auto is a 9MM.
My other car is a piece of shit.
My other car sticker is funny.

Nothing Is Foolproof To A Sufficiently-Talented Fool
Nothing is illegal until you get caught.
Nothing is impossible to the person that doesn't have to do it.

Okay, who stopped the payment on my reality check?
On The Other Hand, You Have Different Fingers
One more repo and I’ll be debt free!

Plagiarism is copying from one source; research is copying from two or more.

Practice safe government. Use kingdoms.
Pride is what we have. Vanity is what others have.
Proud mother of a delinquent child!
Pull my finger.

Reality is a figment of your imagination.
Reality is a nice place, but I wouldn't want to live there.
Rehab is for quitters.

Santa’s Elves Are Just A Bunch Of Subordinate Clauses
Sarcasm helps keep you from telling people what you really think of them.
Save a tree, eat a beaver.
Save on gas, go fart in a jar.
Save the planet recycle an environmentalist.
Save the whales! Trade them for valuable prize

Smile and the world smiles with you, Fart and you stand alone.

Someday your prince will come. Mine got lost took a wrong turn and is too stubborn to ask for directions.

Sometimes I wake up grumpy; Other times I let her sleep!!'s what's for dinner.

The light at the end of the tunnel is the headlight of the oncoming train.

The sky is always bluer at the top of the windshield.
The solution to a problem changes the nature of the problem.
The squeaky wheel is often replaced.
The world is coming to an end. Please log off.

This car is constipated: hasn't passed a thing all day!
This car is designed by computer, built by a robot, driven by a moron.
This car is protected by an anti-theft sticker!
This is not an abandoned car.
This is the rebel base.
This truck has been in 15 accidents...and hasn't lost one yet..
This vehicle insured by Smith and Wesson.

Unless You're A Hemorrhoid, STAY OFF MY ASS!

Was today really necessary?
We are born naked, wet and hungry. Then things get worse.
We are having EVER so much fun!
We are Microsoft. Resistance Is Futile. You Will Be Assimilated.

What happens if you get scared half to death twice?
What if the Hokey Pokey really is what its all about?
What If There Were No Hypothetical Questions?


Where There’s A Will, I’m In The Way.
Where there's a will there's a BEER!
Where there's a will, I want to be in it!

Who died and made YOU Darth Vader?.
Who is General Failure and why is he reading my hard disk?

Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?
Why do they call it a bumper if you're not going to use it?

YES this is my truck, NO I won't help you move!.
Yes, As A Matter Of Fact, I Do Own The Whole Damn Road!

You Are Depriving Some Village Of Its Idiot
You are driving to close I can see your bald spot.

You are only young once, but you can stay immature indefinitely.
You are right where you belong, behind me!


You’re Just Jealous Because The Voices Only Speak To Me
Your Child May Be An Honor Student, But You’re Still An Asshole
Your honor student deals the best drugs.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Random Thoughts

I wish Google Maps had an "Avoid Ghetto" routing option.

More often than not, when someone is telling me a story all I can
think about is that I can't wait for them to finish so that I can
tell my own story that's not only better, but also more directly
involves me.

Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you
realize you're wrong.

I don't understand the purpose of the line, "I don't need to drink to
have fun." Great, no one does. But why start a fire with flint and
sticks when they've invented the lighter?

Have you ever been walking down the street and realized that you're
going in the complete opposite direction of where you are supposed to
be going? But instead of just turning a 180 and walking back in the
direction from which you came, you have to first do something like
check your watch or phone or make a grand arm gesture and mutter to
yourself to ensure that no one in the surrounding area thinks you're
crazy by randomly switching directions on the sidewalk.

I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was

The letters T and G are very close to each other on a keyboard. This
recently became all too apparent to me and consequently I will never
be ending a work email with the phrase "Regards" again.

Do you remember when you were a kid, playing Nintendo and it wouldn't
work? You take the cartridge out, blow in it and that would magically
fix the problem. Every kid in America did that, but how did we all
know how to fix the problem? There was no internet or message boards
or FAQ's. We just figured it out. Today's kids are soft.

There is a great need for sarcasm font.

Sometimes, I'll watch a movie that I watched when I was younger and
suddenly realize I had no idea what the f*** was going on when I
first saw it.

I think everyone has a movie that they love so much; it actually
becomes stressful to watch it with other people. I'll end up wasting
90 minutes shiftily glancing around to confirm that everyone's
laughing at the right parts, then making sure I laugh just a little
bit harder (and a millisecond earlier) to prove that I'm still the
only one who really, really gets it.

How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?

I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than
take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.

I think part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear
your computer history if you die.

The only time I look forward to a red light is when I'm trying to
finish a text.

A recent study has shown that playing beer pong contributes to the
spread of mono and the flu. Yeah, if you suck at it.

Was learning cursive really necessary?

Lol has gone from meaning, "laugh out loud" to "I have nothing else
to say".

I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and

Answering the same letter three times or more in a row on a Scantron
test is absolutely petrifying.

My brother's Municipal League baseball team is named the Stepdads.
Seeing as none of the guys on the team are actual stepdads, I
inquired about the name. He explained, "Cuz we beat you, and you hate
us." Classy, bro.

Whenever someone says "I'm not book smart, but I'm street smart", all
I hear is "I'm not real smart, but I'm imaginary smart".

How many times is it appropriate to say "What?" before you just nod
and smile because you still didn't hear what they said?

I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars teams up
to prevent a jerk from cutting in at the front. Stay strong,

While driving yesterday I saw a banana peel in the road and
instinctively swerved to avoid it....thanks Mario Kart.

MapQuest really needs to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure I
know how to get out of my neighborhood.

Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the
person died.

I find it hard to believe there are actually people who get in the
shower first and THEN turn on the water.

Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty,
and you can wear them forever.

I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind of tired.
Bad decisions make good stories.

Whenever I'm Facebook stalking someone and I find out that their
profile is public I feel like a kid on Christmas morning who just got
the Red Ryder BB gun that I always wanted. 546 pictures? Don't mind
if I do!

If Carmen San Diego and Waldo ever got together, their offspring
would probably just be completely invisible.

Why is it that during an ice-breaker, when the whole room has to go
around and say their name and where they are from, I get so
incredibly nervous? Like I know my name, I know where I'm from; this
shouldn't be a problem...

You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work
when you've made up your mind that you just aren't doing anything
productive for the rest of the day.

Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after DVDs? I don't
want to have to restart my collection.

There's no worse feeling than that millisecond you're sure you are
going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.

I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me
if I want to save any changes to my ten page research paper that I
swear I did not make any changes to.

"Do not machine wash or tumble dry" means I will never wash this

I hate being the one with the remote in a room full of people
watching TV. There's so much pressure. 'I love this show, but will
they judge me if I keep it on? I bet everyone is wishing we weren't
watching this. It's only a matter of time before they all get up and
leave the room. Will we still be friends after this?'

While watching the Olympics, I find myself cheering equally for China
and USA . No, I am not of Chinese descent, but I am fairly certain
that when Chinese athletes don't win, they are executed.

I hate when I just miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello?
Darnit!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and
goes to voicemail. What'd you do after I didn't answer? Drop the
phone and run away?

I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not
seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

When I meet a new girl, I'm terrified of mentioning something she
hasn't already told me but that I have learned from some light
internet stalking.

I like all of the music in my iTunes, except when it's on shuffle,
then I like about one in every fifteen songs in my iTunes.

Why is a school zone 20 mph? That seems like the optimal cruising
speed for pedophiles...

Sometimes I'll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still
not know what time it is.

It should probably be called Unplanned Parenthood.

I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to
answer when they call.

I think that if, years down the road when I'm trying to have a kid, I
find out that I'm sterile, most of my disappointment will stem from
the fact that I was not aware of my condition in college.

Even if I knew your social security number, I wouldn't know what do
to with it.

Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car
keys in a pocket, finding their cell phone, and Pinning the Tail on
the Donkey - but I'd bet my a$$ everyone can find and push the Snooze
button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first
time every time...

My 4-year old son asked me in the car the other day "Dad what would
happen if you ran over a ninja?" How the h*ll do I respond to that?

It really pi$$es me off when I want to read a story on and
the link takes me to a video instead of text.

I wonder if cops ever get pi$$ed off at the fact that everyone they
drive behind obeys the speed limit.

I think the freezer deserves a light as well.

I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or
Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lites than Kay.

The other night I ordered takeout, and when I looked in the bag, saw
they had included four sets of plastic silverware. In other words,
someone at the restaurant packed my order, took a second to think
about it, and then estimate d that there must be at least four people
eating to require such a large amount of food. Too bad I was eating
by myself. There's nothing like being made to feel like a fat b@st@rd
before dinner.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Morning post-commute note to wife

I'm having a heck of a time this morning...

  • I forgot my bike helmet, had to turn around to come back and get it. I wasn't too far away from home, at the top of the hill going towards the winery.
  • Lost a bungee cord, and my lunch sack fell off my bike. Luckily, the lunch sack fell off while I was going up the ramp into the parking garage, I heard it fall and immediately stopped to pick it up. The bungee was nowhere to be found, of course.
  • Went to eat my cereal this morning, got the milk out of the vending machine. Poured the milk on the cereal took a bite and yeeeesh! Sour milk.
  • We missed the Powerball. Someone in South Carolina won it.

By the way, it's my wife's birthday today. Happy Birthday! LLVE! -D

Monday, August 17, 2009

Front wheel, Dirt Drops, and crossed fingers

It was a dark and stormy night. Most epic novels start like that :>)

Really, it was just a rainy Saturday. Actually, not all that rainy but I was planning on riding the Corporate Cycling Challenge on Sunday, so I took a rest day. What a great opportunity to start bringing a few bike parts together into meaningful assemblies. Since I very recently received a shipment of spokes and spoke nipples, wheels of course came naturally to mind.

The front wheel came together first. No big drama here, everything came together quite nicely. A bit of tweaking, and everything came into muss, no fuss.

I didn't mislace or forget any spokes on this one. I've been known to do that from time to time. I double checked, just to be sure. Honest. I wasn't motivated enough to start the rear wheel, there's plenty of time for that.

However, some things just couldn't wait. I stumbled onto the Rivendell site Saturday and happened to notice a notice posted...someone found 50 Nitto DirtDrop handlebars sitting in a box hidden in a dusty warehouse corner. Nitto stopped producing these in 2004. I immediately placed an order for one of those bad boys along with some tires, tubes, headset and stem. As far as I know, I got the order in on time. I rec'd the order confirmation via e-mail, and when I checked today all 50 DirtDrop handlebars were sold out. I'm not at all surprised, and I won't be absolutely certain I have these bars until I'm holding them in my hot little hands. I'm sure Riv's shipping department will be more than busy packing and shipping them in the next few days.

They're gonna look really nice on the Bleriot. My fingers are crossed. :>)


Saturday, August 15, 2009

I'm not at the Movies

Why don't I go to movies as often as I used to? I was looking at some local movie showtimes and this is all I came up with...

• Bandslam NEW! Some kind a band contest. I've been to high school band contests. Not exciting.
• 1 hr. 51 min.

· District 9 NEW! Sci Fi, aliens, that kinda stuff. Aliens come to Earth and get stuck here. I think their GPS quit working. We are tired of them hanging around because they ate all our potato chips. R • 1 hr. 53 min.

· The Time Traveler's Wife NEW! Chick Flick Alert! She's a wife. Of a Time Traveler. Who has a time machine, and uses it to travel through time. He didn't help do the dishes or the laundry before he left and boy is she pissed! PG-13 • 1 hr. 48 min.

· G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra NEW! I dig a real American hero...G.I. JOE!!! but the movie sounds like a pile of crap to me. Maybe would go IF they were handing out free Joe action figures. It'd give me something to when I got bored watching the film. PG-13 • 1 hr. 58 min.

·Julie & Julia NEW! Chick Flick 2 Alert! Alert! Woman obsesses over Julia Child, tries to cook all 10 million of her recipes. Husband/boyfriend/Lesbian lover has to eat them. Might be funny, though.PG-13 • 2 hr. 3 min.

· A Perfect Getaway NEW! Horror/Thriller set in Maui. I wanna have fun in Maui, not get dismembered there. NOT! R • 1 hr. 38 min.

· Aliens in the Attic Is this animated? Sci fi? Kid stuff? If they're living in the attic, where do they go to the bathroom? Nuh-uh PG • 1 hr. 26 min.

· Funny People Has Adam Sandler and Seth Rogan. Rogan farts and Sandler recites fart jokes. Could be really stupid funny, or just stupid. R • 2 hr. 16 min.

· G-Force in Disney Digital 3D Animated story about armed rodents. Huh?? PG • 1 hr. 30 min.

· The Ugly Truth Chick Flick 3 Alert! Alert! Alert! Woman, brain and heart. Man, pee-pee and balls. Everyone knows this. R • 1 hr. 35 min.

· Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince Harry graduates from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Gets a job, gets hitched, buys a house in the 'burbs, has a couple of kids. Worries about his golf game and his receding hairline. Wait for the DVD. PG • 2 hr. 33 min.

· Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen I am Optimus Prime. I am a big ass robot. I am here to save you, while spewing really corny dialogue. PG-13 • 2 hr. 30 min.

· The Proposal Chick Flick FOUR ALERT x 4!!! Guy hates girl. Girl hates guy, but in the end they are naked and get stuck together anyway. Formulaic. PG-13 • 1 hr. 47 min.

· The Hangover Funny as hell, but we already saw it. R • 1 hr. 40 min.


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Chasing Tandems

I shouldn't ride bikes with rear-view mirrors.

Tuesday, I pulled the Quickie Blue Fixie out of the mix. Yeah, it's my 'winter' bike but it looked so lonely leaning up against the wall, well, I just thought it needed a bit of bike love.

While heading down the Lake Manawa trail commuting home from work, I met a tandem at the South Omaha bridge road trail. A fit woman and man stoker, experienced-looking cyclists. I passed them as they were merging onto the Lake Manawa trail.

I just had a feeling. Nice flat trail, zero headwind. I figured they'd be closing the gap quickly once they gained momentum. Sure enough, I saw them in the rear view, coming up on my left.

I felt that old Neanderthal eyebrow growing across my forehead. Me not let you pass caveman Grok! I jumped on the pedals and surged ahead. Of course, it was a short-lived victory. It took them a short time to gain speed and momentum, and soon they coasted past me on my left. Did he say 'on your left?' or 'you are left behind, loser?'. Nuh-uh!

I wasn't gonna be dropped. No way. I furiously pedaled away, and managed to maintain a steady gap between myself and the tandem. It was going to be hills where I might be able to gain an advantage. They had to slow to turn for a bridge and I managed to gain a bit there, but they sped away as they circled around the lake. I mashed the pedals and spun furiously, legs and lungs burning.

As I was going into the home stretch, I seemed to be gaining. I kept at it, and since there are a few sharp turns and rolling hills in that final part of the run they lost some of their momentum. I pulled closer, closer, until I was closing on their back tire...still pumping away furiously, sweating, panting, cursing (quietly, inside).

I never did pass them...I really didn't intend to. I really wasn't interested in being first, I just didn't want to be left in the dust. I imagine these people were thinking 'what the heck is up with that ding-dong?' I don't know. The thrill of the chase? Competition? Maybe I just don't like to be passed. Old man can still pedal a bike. -D

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Progress Report

Since I'm calling the blog "My Bleriot Build", I suppose I should write a bit about that particular subject.

As I've mentioned, this one is going to progress slowly. There are just too many nice bike riding days and too much going on during the weekends, to find much time to spend on bike tinkering. I'm afraid if I get started, I'll get focused on bike building and miss out on some good riding and other fun stuff.

I finally received the Shimano Nexus hub from Bikeman. I had to wait a while for that one, because they were out of stock and I had to order a substitute. I ended up with the higher quality 'Redband' hub, though it cost me about $30 more. Since the Bleriot has vertical dropouts I got the special vertical anti-rotation washers, and I'll also have to order a chain tensioner. I'm considering the Surly Singleator.

I've had the generator hub for some time. I ordered that from Harris Cyclery, along with the headlight and a few other related bits. A couple of weeks ago, I pulled out my trusty calipers and made the measurements necessary to make the calculations for spoke length. I calculated the spoke lengths for the Nexus hub some time ago, since Sheldon's website contained a complete dimensional layout. The order went in to Lickbike, and I received the spokes just two days ago. Does this mean I can actually start building my wheels? Yes!


Saturday, August 8, 2009

My Fellow Iowans

Interesting August 6 Dave Moulton post:

And yes, I commented.  I will be riding farm to market roads until my legs fall off, and I don't care how many signatures the 'Citizens for Safety Coalition' put on their petition.

Petitioners: Please let me know which roads you live on,  so my cyclist friends and I can exercise our rights to utilize the public roads by riding them.  We'll figure out who you are.  Most likely, it will be the drivers that honk and/or yell and/or flip us off.  Go ahead.  We'll do what we normally do to rude drivers: smile and politely wave back!