Thursday, November 28, 2013

It's important to remember what we have from time to time.

This has been a VERY rough year for a lot of friends for a gamut of reasons.  And today of all days makes me thankfull for a laundry list of items but not just limited to whats below:

The men and women in our services.  Doing there best to represent us and protect us. Especially those on deployment who can't be with their family's this holiday season. 

The men and women who server in our protective services, aka police, fire, rescue, etc.  These people are out doing incredibly hard jobs to keep us safe.  Remember that next time you get pulled over for breaking the law, even though you were only going 10 mph over!  :) 

For my health and most of my friends continued good health.  If nothing else it reminds me to make smart decisions about what I am comfortable with and where I move into risk exceeding the reward.  I want to live to bike/run/eat/drink tomorrow.  Is going that extra bit faster worth it?  Do you know who besides yourself your risks can impact?

For my continued employment, a lot of friends have lost jobs recently or left bad ones.  My job isn't awesome in someways but it continues to be stable and offer opportunity to make $$ if you are willing to work.

My friends.  What can I say, be they roommates, people I ride with regularly, people I ride with occasionally or new people I've gotten to meet thru out the year.  Watching a movie last night I was reminded of how important friendships are to keeping people on an even keel during the hard times. 

My family.  Family drives you nuts, but they are your roots always something I feel I can look back on and see the support they have provided over my life.  Sure there are twists and turns and they aren't always pretty. 

Good Beer.  'Nuff Said.

Shelter, Food, Clothing, Friends, Health and Stuff.  

Monday, November 25, 2013

Being locked out is no fun

Saturday was a planned off day as I had some delusions about going on Pete's ride Sunday.  Well by the time to roll came around on Sunday I was not going anywhere except by foot for a bit. 

Saturday I took care of some business and helped a friend with a project.  It was good to get it off the list, and we actually got it done quick.  Then trolled the otherside of Vienna, who knew their were some snooty snobby @#$#@ just off Maple/123.

Sunday started off bad and went to stupid/worse quickly.

Woke up to the house at a lovely 53 degrees F.  COLD!  Went down and turned heat off for 2 minutes then tried to engage emergency heat - no real difference in air coming from vent.  The EM heat is out I suspect.  I think it had tried using it over night and failed.  So I messed around and changed some stuff and got the heatpump/aux going.  I went out back in fleece/hat/gloves/jeans (No jacket) to check heatpump and after inspection went back up to go in.  Uh Oh.  Oh Shit.   Front door shut behind me.  And knob based lock was engaged.  Tried to pop/force as it was loosely shut - no luck it closed solid on 3rd try!  No roommates 1 was at work, 1 was not due back till afternoon from out of town.  No phone.  No keys.  No Cash.  Tried my car in-case i left it unlocked as that would give me access to secret cash stash - No luck. 

Back down to basement.  Tried to pop sliding glass door - No luck, very well secured.  Nice job me.  Basement window - Locked.  Deck climb???  Last resort.  Try front windows.  2 sets appear to be in open position.  No luck.  Back to examine deck climb.  Not going to be easy/safe or fun.  Re-examine basement window then main windows.  Try a bit harder - BINGO! Back in I go.  Now about 9 am and I'd been out for 30-40 mins.  Almost had given up to go bum around downtown vienna and bounce from shopping ctr to shopping ctr to stay warm till roommate returned. 

Once I was warmer I was off to Starblechs for Cocoa and breakfast.  Then home depot for a new key lockbox outside.  No more lockouts!   The rest of the morning was spent straightening up the house, taking care of errands, and general crap.  House got warm again around mid-afternoon.  Still is okay now.  Sigh. 

Busy week.  Tonight I gotta run.  Tuesday uh avoid winter storm.  Wednesday prep for Turkey Lurkey Day Adventures, Turkey Day Armageddon. Friday - Going out, Saturday - who knows.  Sunday I shall Take 0ver the World!

Friday, November 22, 2013

I'll take that for a dollar!

It was a warm one out last night for sure.  It was warmer than I was prepared for.  The winter boots were overkill, except when going thru the very damp creek.  Oh well. 

Ton of riders out, some new folks, some old returnee's.  It was a good ride, big thanks to Russ A for leading a supersized Cas+ ride.

Way too much b33r last night.  But good times were had and good talk was exchanged by the DDRC.  But getting home at 11:20 was a bit harsh and by the time I was in bed I think it was 12:15.  Another semi-restless night of sleep and my neck is still  a bit tender. Now my stupid left hand is sore either from riding or punch myself stupid in my sleep. 

Busy weekend on deck maybe.  Depends on some flakey folks and how @##@$$# the weather is on Sunday and how stir crazy I am.  Hoping to make some positive plans.  

Also need to bottle some beer and get ready for brewing a new batch for Thanksgiving week.  I think it's a Black Rye IPA on deck!  Hell yah! 

Poured out the last of the failed Peanut Butter Chocolate Stout yesterday.  It's a sad thing to pour out 2 cases of BAD beer.  Even when it tastes like crap.  I learned 2 things.  Don't mess around with timing on homebrew and avoid @#$@# extracts/etc in full batches.  If using something funky limit to half batch at maximum.  

It's almost time to escape work, I can NOT fricking wait.  Ants in my pants  or something.  Actually excited to get out and run!  Someone stop me! 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Get out there young man!

Busy week of riding and doing stuff.

Saturday I snuck in a great ride with Maureen at WF post work.  It was a tad damp and the bike showed it afterwards requiring  me to re-hook up the hose to get it somewhere approximating clean.   Got a ton of other crap also done this day. 

Sunday I cooked epic pancake and snausage breakfast before heading out on a 40 mile re-introduction to roadie-hood.  It was a nice way to spend a few hours except I forgot water and snacks and by halfway back I was bonked.  Quick stop at TBL Reston for water, fuel, and rinsing out the sweaty headband and I powered home feeling better.  Got the car washed and oil changed and a few other  things.

Friday I also hit costco and WF post  picking up my roomie.  It was a busy but uber productive weekend.  Good times.

Monday rolled up on me with a vengeance.  Like a Spirit of Vengeance like Nic Cage.

It's Monday B@#$@es!!!!

So I rode into work on Monday and that wasn't bad i was honestly too warm in my woolie.  Work sucked but I got out mostly ontime and road home in my T-shirt.  Gotta leave a spare jersey at work for those unplanned super warm days.  My left shoulder was a tad sore so I decided to go for a quick run.  As I was running I decided I would do some urban crossfit and hit the park gym of pull up bars and other stuff.  Bad mistake.  Shoulder went from ouch to @#$@## THAT F@#KING HURTS!

Spent the night and next day abusing the heating pad and advil but by 4pm the shoulder was mostly okay.  So off I schlepped to Schaeffer Farm.  Damn it felt cold in the lot and my fingers froze right away for some reason!  Trails have REALLY eroded in a few spots.  But it was good except where I made a few bad line choices and had to stop.  d'oh. 

Post ride it was off to DFH GTown for beer and chow.  Good beer and good friends. 

WACK dreams and I don't know whether to blame beer or food or what but I must have had my most active night of dreaming in years.  Slept thru my alarm till 8PM.

Friday, November 15, 2013

It's a hard knock life on MTB

A better night at WF last night except for 1 bit. 

I broke another saddle.  Thats saddle #2 to give up the ghost at WF.  And the 3rd saddle thats failed on me.  1st was my original WTB back on the Giant Rainer that eventually the rails simply flattened/crushed on.  2nd was my Terry Fly Ti.  Rail snapped while riding towards Salemander at WF on the rocks.  This one failed somewhere early I think in phase 1 headed towards the creek trail section 3.  It survived the next 8 mile pretty well.  A Selle Italia that had been on there for at least 2 years.  I think it's a good reflection that I am a better rider but I still do sit too much.  I'm sure the PA Adventure also contributed to it's recent failure.  That was a LOT of rocks.

New tubeless tire up front gets a mixed rating, but I expect that to improve.  I had WAY too  much air at around 34/35psi in it last night and expect it to get less-funky/loose when I drop it to 30'ish.

Boy was that tire a B@#!! to get mounted.  Super tight bead.  I also had to go back nearly flatten it 2 times then use stans on a rag to get 2 spots to seat properly/slip the bead in to seat.  Those pops always are good for a scare.  :) 

Tuesday I went down to WF post work for a pre-ride beer and ended up with a 11oz BCS from Goose Island from 2012.  Hell yah!  15%+ ABV.  It's a monster and it's smoother than at release for sure with a year aging.  Went down super nice.   And I weaved my way towards Barlington the first 2 miles of the WOD I rode.  No food plus 15% = Ass kicking booze hit.  Even in 11 OZ.

Went down to Mad Rose with a few navigation mis-cues but got there eventually.  In time to score a free beer to start with, a Lagunitas IPA.  Damn good.  Saw a few known faces, talked with Mike E for a bit.  Got some food order and checked out the Race Dots.  Excellent idea.  Mini Magnets setup for holding on race #'s for bike and running races.  No safety pins.  Really strong magnets.  Lets you slide them and the plate around your shirt. 

Busy weekend on deck again.  Plans tonight, work sat, ride Saturday afternoon, party Sat, Sun big ride on road, and other crap.

I'll be so glad when I have 2 official days off again.  Off for more free taco's at work now.  Viva la Bell!

Friday, November 08, 2013

Once, Twice, Three times...

Oy the MTB gods sent me a message loud and clear last night to drag my sorry ass of the trails early.  I was done and at my car by 7:45 or so with a flat and realized I had hit my 3 strikes rule and it was time to be done.  In actually that was the 4th strike, not the third.

1st Bungle.  Riding section 3 of the creek trail aka the race course section below phase 1 and phase 4 I hit a sandtrap I didn't see and nearly ditched my bike and myself recovery at the last second somehow to get a foot down and an arm around a tree. 

2nd Bungle - Phase 4 lower/western entrance we had gotten thru 3 of the 4 rock gardens and I ran out of steam and ended up stalled.  I got stopped safely and scooted out of the way to the left as far as possible.  Unfortunately the following rider was too close, didn't/couldn't get around me and stalled and fell over onto me knocking me half over and my bike fully. 2#$#@!!!  Thank rich!  Too bad Neil didn't have his camera ready for that one.

3rd Bungle - Coming out of phase 4 and after crossing the logs into upper phase 1 I hit a hidden stick and fully dump my bike and myself.  My first real fall in a while.  I landed well it was just done/over quick. 

4th Insult - Flat tire on access trail along creek to phase 1/salemander/powerlines/berms.  I must have hit the lone thorn of doom or something but after messing about with ramping a log more safely I noticed my front was squirely and going flat.  I had neil take over leadership with the group headed towards the bowl.  By the time I hit the tennis courts the front was flat.  Or at least mostly flat.  And no pump in the car.  Oh well.  I changed and relaxed.

Kilroy's was nuts as the Skins game was on and they were still winning.  We ended up in the dining room.  Good group and was pretty damn funny.

Rode in this morning, wasn't THAT cold though the tips of my fingers were a bit frozen by the end.   Ride home should be nicer.  Gotta figure the layers out.

Run tonight and hopefully sneak in a ride on Sunday before some lawn work with J.   

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Blow up the outside

What a week it's been.  Crazy shit at work.  Crazy shit on the bike.  Crazy cold with no heat at home still.

Should be getting the replacement thermo today.  I'll re-check the wiring that is there currently against what I originally had hopefully.  It was a TAD chilly this AM when I got up at 4 and 6 to do some remote testing.

HOPEFULLY will be biking in tomorrow for the 1st time in WAY too long. 

Rode big up in PA with some friends this weekend.  RB Winter Park has some awesome riding.  Pick up the Lizard Map for the Bald Eagle area and some others.

I realized I was at 54 miles of MTB between Thursday and Sunday.  Damn.  Second best week since Spring Man Camp.  Gotta ride the mtb WAY more this next year. 

Still easily on track to double my mileage on bikes of last year but my MTB will have dropped probably 200+ miles this year.  Thats kinda sad honestly. 

However things are SLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWLY changing at work.  Had an informal sitdown interviewation.  The wagon wheels are turning.  Will the day come before Year 9 starts that I get my Saturday's back.  More than likely I suspect it will actually be the spring.