Random thoughts among other things from a smelly good boy

25 July, 2005

Oh yeah. Lance won another Tour Day French and it was pretty exciting. Too bad all the money that he's got involved in cycling will dry up once he leaves. Trek will have to figure out how to market their bikes now that he's gone, Giro and Oakley lost their #1 man in cycling, Nike will still make billions but no longer really care about the sport, Bissel will pull out after this year, and Discovery will start to look like a lame dick sponsor. It's really inevitable. The mountain that Lance created will become hollowed out beginning today and who will notice besides the riders?
All that Lance has done for this sport and we still get yelled at when we train.
But buy a yellow wristband and contribute to Lance's retirement fund. You'll feel better about yourself.

Got into Columbus last night after driving for what seemed like an eternity. There was mad traffic and people were having a hard time merging. Smart. We went straight out on the piss as soon as we unpacked the van. PIcked up Sham and Ryan (Marc's buddy's) and then headed over to Oldfields on High St., showed the I.D., paid the band (which rocked) and posted up at the bar for a dozen or so. Nice times. Rocked over to the Tim Hortons and grabbed what they had left, stuffed it in our bellys and then I crashed out on the couch. Woke up to the cat licking my face and the smell of coffee brewing. That was ten minutes ago.
Home today and I cannot wait to get there. I love my bed.

22 July, 2005

Sitting in Starfecks sipping some scalding hot coffee listening to the cheeriest, happiest, most awake barista I've ever come across in all my travels. I hate her and I think I'm going to drop a watery duece in their bathroom- because I've got salmonella and I can. No one should be that happy before noon.
Going to try and race today and recover some lost form that has fallen down the sewer lines as of late. I hope that I can finish and make a little money, otherwise I'm going home deep in the hole, deeper than most of the pros here, and will have to go back to the bike shop to clean GU off tri-geek's bikes (which is more annoying than cleaning greasy 10 speed cassettes). What burns me een more is the fact that I'm going to have to train my ass off before Cirt Nats now since I've missed all the good races out here. I hate training in the summer. You should be racing, not training, but since I live in NorCal, where the races are far and few between, I have to train. What we need is more events and not more cracker jack pro teams.

21 July, 2005

Sitting outside at Alterra coffee shop where there is an opera going on so inside is packed with the scents of too much cheap perfume and bad cologne, bad breath and spilt coffee, lingering cigarette smoke and a hint of B.O. Just like a Broadway show's lobby at intermission. Marco and I are very confused right now. Confused that we aren't racing (since it was pouring rain at about 4:30pm and now it isn't), confused about this fecking opera at the coffee house (heard of serving coffee at an opera but not opera at a coffee house-odd), confused about the state of our bodies- pretty much everything right now is a little confusing. I'm going home soon (monday), after a nice little cruise to Columbus, and I've only raced a handful of times, gone through a bolt of toilet paper, drank very few beers, went to only one new bar (in the land of most bars per capita), and only got to two road races. Hopefully there will be some racing going on in Nor Cal (though I doubt it) that will be worth going to.

20 July, 2005

Beverly Hills Criterium
Beverly Hills, Illlinois

Round and round we go, up and over, push pull and all that. Follow the wheels that are carving the turns, don’t touch a wheel and don’t fall down. That was Friday night’s crit. Bit of a shocker straight out of the car but the legs were going well enough to stay out of trouble, but not fast enough to get off the front to lap the field like some boys did, and they just ripped through the field when they finally came around the back of the pack. It was impressive. Wish I was there with them but ‘the Beast’ (Marco’s Armada) took my legs, though it may have been Continental, or it may have been just the fact that I was slow. Oh well, there’s always 17 more races to do!

Rest day
Saturday, July 9, 2005
We were going to race, we talked about it, we planned it, then we slept in. Tired legs are not the best to race with. We were a little sore from the night before and Jay Allen’s (McGuire) girl was coming in from Scotland right when we were supposed to finish the race so the driving around would have thrown us all over Wisconsin so we ended up bailing on the race. And that was actually OK since we got to see the Tour Day French and Lance do what he does. He’s fast, but I have both my balls, so HA! Marco and I ended up running errands and sorting out our switch to Heim Time’s house (where we crashed last year) as he was on his way back from Nebraska. Kevin Heim is the man with the house that has more couches and beds than anyone I know. It’s very hospitable up in Brown Deer, where he lives, and it’s home from home while we’re all in Milwaukee racing around in circles. Hell, he’s got Tivo! What more can you want?

Wauwatosa Criterium
Suunday, July 10, 2005
Flat, fast, 4 corners. Just what the Doctor ordered for the go fast legs. Hooked up with Hudak and the boys (Axt, Yeah Yeah, D-Rizzle), swapped some stories an got ready to go. McKenna was with us in the car and was sipping the Lite’s while we were spun out in the 11 trying to follow Menzies around the course. Strong bugger that guy and set to rip your legs off all the time, especially now. Funny that we haven’t really seen them all year, but I guess now is the time for them to get going fast since their sponsor is in Milwaukee and the racing is basically in their back yard. All the Endevour guys are riding really well right now, but they just can’t seem to grab the leader’s jersey.
During the race the break went up the road and I tried to bridge but failed, then I tried to chase them down, got close then blew, then I tried to get off the front, and failed, again and again. Annoying, really annoying. One of those days where I just couldn’t get into a rhythm. After the race we had to wait around for Marco and Jay to pick up their cash, then we switched out Jay for Rahsaan Bahati and brought him back to his host house for the rest of the time. Got some grub at a Mexican restaurant that was overrun with dumb cyclists, shoved it down, got in the truck and jetted back to Milwaukee. Dropped off Bahati at his host housing then went to McKenna’s for some sleep. Mike’s dog started yapping at us (it’s 1 am mind you). Mike let her out then she started whining to go out, so I let her out the back door. She wandered off so I had to go after her. Running around the streets of Ravenswood in my boxer shorts whisper-yelling at Harley to get her little ass back into the house. Lovely. Got her back into the hose and then she started whining for Mike’s bed. At around 3am she got into the room and I finally fell asleep.

Rest Day
Monday, July 11, 2005
Legs are feeling tight right now, but ok on the little spin we took. Got some coffee, watched the Tour, played some Texas Hold ‘em, took a nap, tried to eat right, packed the car up and headed over to Heim’s house at about 7pm. Chatted for a while about life and such, grabbed some dinner and went to sleep. Rest day’s are long, but missing Alpine Valley road race is worth it. Ouch, my legs just ache thinking about it.

MGA Proving Grounds road race
Burlington, Wi.
Tuesday, July 12, 2005
Finally going to do a road race and a good one at that. Not really too many hills though it seems up and down all day and if not that then it’s windy and flat. It’s actually a lot of fun. We woke up to rain pattering the windows, got into the Beast and drove over to Cosi for some coffee and a snack of eggs and biscuits, packed the truck and headed down to Burlington for the race.
Rocked up to the parking lot with very little time to spare but the race got delayed and so we ended up having a lot of time for the eggs to disappear into the ether. I was hungry on the line ad that wasn’t good. The rain was still spitting down and there seemed to be a lot of dour faces on the start line. We finally got racing and the attacks came thick and quick. I finally had some kind of legs and got into a move with some fast buggers and we stayed away for the rest of the day. We rolled on and I never saw less than 170 on my Polar for about 2 laps. I started seeing stars and gave Hudak the "NEED FOOD NOW" sign by putting fingers to my mouth. I saw Drew go Matrix slow-mo, reaching over the cooler for a pack of brownies. As I came by my hand went out and his came up- the brownie pack into my hand. I’ve never had a better brownie pack in my life.
We were flying around the course and splitting the wind as fast as we could go. I kept thinking that it would settle down, but it never really did until some more guys came across and the shit hit the fan when Menzies attacked. He split the group and 7 guys went off, with one gangly German dangling in no man’s land. Our sprint opened up and I stood, then sat and finished 14th. Hardest $65 I ever made.

Rest Day
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Coffee, snack, nap, TV, Starbucks ride, some Lites and then to bed. A fantastic day all in all. Not very descriptive, sorry.

Shorewood Criterium
Shorewood, Wi.
Thursday, July 14, 2005
Finally a race just down the road from where we're staying, and near the lake as well so the temperatures are reasonable though the racing was hot hos (whatever the hell that means. I read it somewhere in the comments buried in Saunder's blog)! Met up with Hudak, D-rizzle, D-La-B, DD, Paul and their host family, took a nice photo (once I figure out how to upload it into my new laptop I'll post), and got ready to race. I walked into the salon that was right off the passenger door and asked where the restroom was. One of the stylists said in the back and then dropped her comb when she looked at my package. God bless my Garneau shorts, 'cause you know if you can see an Irishman's banger then the shorts are all tight and right!
Got to the line and got my head into it. Round and round we went and the legs felt all right for a while. I was minding my own buisness with Hudak keeping guys form diving my inside when I realised it was about 12 to go and then the shit hit the fan and the pace got worked up like a whore on a Friday night. I didn't drop it form my 12 for about 4 laps and guys started to gap off. I tried to move up and shot up to about top 20 in one backstretch and all was good. The field started to go gangbusters and McGuire started to lead out. It got real hectic with about 4 to go and I was worried about dying. Something about field sprints that make me cringe even though I've got really good healthcare. Anyway, lived long enough to see the line in about 20th spot and got into 11th at the line. Good but not good enough for a top ten. Oh well, there's always tomorrow.
Side note- it was funny to see Menzies giving Saunders a hard time, jawing back and forth and then Menzies was on his ass due to poor bike handling skills. 10 points to Saunders for not peeing on him while he was down. Class.

Brewer's Hill
Milwaukee, Wi
July 15, 2005
The grandaddy that would kick your ass when you were young designed this race. And you remember how you felt about that. It was cool to get those dollar bills every now and then from Pappy, but then he would rap his ring on top your head when you were being a bit ansy, or a bit frisky with his patience. Don't get me wrong its a cool race, cool as actually, but 70 times up that hill feels like a visit to grumpy grampa's house after a while- its fun, but there's no cable tv. I felt like a rock star for about half of it, but missed the move/split that lapped the field (32 guys) and then got worked over by a GuataPortaMexiRican guy that wouldn't let me breathe up the hill. I was surprised that Danny Neilleson (Denmark team) missed the move along with Menzies and some other guys as well, but there we were, getting lapped. Feck that, I pulled out and then realised that I was going to throw up, maybe into my own mouth. Awful feeling, really, but I kept it together and sat in the gutter for a while counting the guys that dropped out. I think more guys were on the side of the road than in the race. Oh well, there's always tomorrow, right?
Hopefully I won't vomit on my laptop.

July 16, 2005
OK, didn't vomit out my mouth- only my back end erupted like Carmen Electra's implant in 1998. Nasty. I think Marco and Rahssan are feeling it too, but it's hard to tell as I haven't left my room except to use the head. I've got a fever of about 102 and I'm cold but sweating through my sheets. I feel like ass and my ass feels like a bilge pump.

July 17, 2005
Rahsaan has the butt pee too. Marco has crooked guts and the house is starting to smell like the bluberry candle lit all day in the bathroom and open ass.
I think I'm going to die.

July 18, 2005
Tried to ride my bike today but I had to poo 5 times before I could think about eating and then I ended up forgetting about the notion of riding. Went down to Alterra coffee and put in a hour session. My laptop wouldn't connect to the wireless network there so I went to Best Buy later that day and bought a new Compaq for 800 bucks. That made me feel a little better, but then had to use their restroom while the Geek Squad was checking it out, and then I felt like before except with 800 dollars more riding on my credit card. Whatever, my laptop is dope and now I can open more than just one window at a time!
Went home, crapped again and pondered what the hell we'd eaten to make us feel this bad.
Went over to Damian Keck's house for a jam session with him and Jonas. I tried to keep up with my VERY limited bass skills and learned a lot. Erok Saunders showed up and really started slapping the bass- man that guy can jam! It was impressive and I've got more respect for big dark now than I had before. Rahsaan was killing the drums for a bit too and it was an all out laugh riot for about 3 hours. Marco and McKenna were manning the recording, I ended up on video (thank goodness because I really do need some bass lessons), Jonas was on drums, Saunders pounding the bass, Damian and one of Jonas' buddies (Jeff) on guitars. An all star Cycling Band.
We're going to be on tour next year, check your local pub for info!

Lake Front Road Race
Milwaukee, Wi.
July 19, 2005
Raced today. Oh yeah, a whopping 1.5 hours until I bonked. I guess it wasn't all that bad considering I'd eaten 3 bowls of cereal, a turkey sandwich, some pretzels and a bowl of oatmeal in 4 days. I'd lost 5 pounds (now 148 bitch!) and felt like ass, but I figured I had to do something other than try and become a cushion on the couch. The race was hard and it's like a big crit every year, this year was no exception. Really wished I'd the legs to go as I really wanted to do well here all year, but the butt pee wasn't helping matters.
G. Henderson and some other guy got away and then Hendy dumped him up the first climb on the last lap and won solo. Hardcore move and really made the rest of us look like fools since he won by more than 3 minutes. Hard cunt.
Jay-Al took 4th in a little chase group and Marco toughed it out to finish strong in the laughing group. It was a rough day, but Rahsaan and I were able to glean some really good info about salmonella poisoning from a nice lady in the feed zone. I was pretty much convinced I'd never bee the same again, but she got my head sorted, now if my ass would follow directions, I'd be OK!

18 July, 2005

Finally on the Internet. I guess Wisconsin, particularly Brown Deer, is a little behind the times with the Internet thing. Heim and Kuel do all their interneting at the school where they teach and so they really find no need to have it at their house. I guess I can understand that.
Been racing now for a while out here at Superweek and I've go some posts to get up here, but I've got to get an unsecure wireless network to poach before I can get them up here.
The racing has been going all right up until Friday night when I came down with a really nice case of food poisoning and now I've got the Nile flowing out my rear. Good stuff. Buy stock in Charmin and you'll make a mint, I guarantee! Ruth, Jay-Al's girl is a newly crowned Scottish doctor and she said that I should be allright in 48 hrs, but I'm thinking of heading down to the hospital. Now that I have insurance I can actually see a real doctor and not some intern learning what livers do. We'll see. Lake Front RR is tomorrow and I hopr to go well there, but if I don't get some food in me (only 3 bowls of cereal in 3 days) I don't know how in the world I can finish a 100 mile road race!

07 July, 2005

Sitting in Marco's basement watching an excruciating film version of one of the greatest poems ever written (The Iliad by Homer). Brad Pitt is annoying and pithy as Achilles and has about as much personality as a bag of nails in the movie. I care nothing about the fate of anyone in this film but I can't rely on everyone dying since the fight scenes are as original as an eighth grader's book report.
And you thought Cruise was gay (not that there's anything wrong with that), Brad Pitt in an Athenian skirt is wicked homo! Grease me up or lose me forever!
Racing tomorrow, and wish me luck!