Friday, April 30, 2010

Summer is Here!

Yes, Summer is here.
Now that The Flat Tire has declared it, it becomes official.
The chill in the wind has been replaced by dehydrating heat waves shimmering off the black top.
Yep, it's here all right.
Well, income generating occupation wise, there's still one more month to go. More like three weeks for the kids don't bother showing up for the last week.
I mean really, why bother?
While the Spring showers still linger, the weather has obviously changed.
It's getting warm.
Or hot.
Or something.
The trade winds no longer cool; they just move the warm air around.
Now it's not like Vegas hot, where when you step out the door it feels like a blast furnace. It's more like ambient hot where everything just feels warm. The ceiling fan is just a prop; psychological warfare against the invading humidity.
When it gets overcast, it gets oppressive.
No more complaining about the wind.
Now it'll be me whining about the heat.
Today's temperatures didn't bother these guys:

Law enforcement officers stay on top of these platforms to raise money for the Special Olympics. It used to be that they stay up there until they raised a specific amount of money, but I don't think they do that any more.
With today's economy, they could be up there for a while.
I hope it doesn't rain.
Kailua Beach Park was a bit like memory lane today:

Seventies style road bike converted to beach cruiser. I hadn't seen one of those in ages. Moving your bars upside-down used to be quite the rage. In fact, way back when I was in the eight grade, I had a Sears Freespirit ten-speed that used to look just like that, inverted bars and all.
Ah, Summer.
Yes, it's here.
The Flat Tire said so.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Adjustments, or a Lack There Of

So I decided that the Barn Door would reap the rewards of the recent upgrade of my bike. I wasn't planning on doing anything to the Barn Door for I only ride it once in blue moon.
In fact, I recently just hit the big one hundred miles on it! What does that figure out to, something like ten percent of my yearly mileage?
Anyways, I figured I'd install my old XT rear derailleur on there and at the same time, change out the front derailleur with an M580 LX version I'd been sitting on.
I've had it for so long, Shimano has upgraded the LX line and it's now called M590.
Ain't obsolescence great?
Changing everything out was a breeze.
One thing though, that Rock N Roll lube is a bit caustic.
No, it didn't criticize my wrench job or call me bad names, it sort of affected the skin on my fingers.
If you use it, be careful when handling your chain.
Well, I had my bike all ready to go and was cranking through gears when I notice there was some slop in the rear.
After adjusting the high and low travel, I went up and down the cassette again to make sure everything was copacetic.
It wasn't.
Still, some clunky shifting in the middle of the cassette.
So I go and try to trim out the cable when oh oh!

Yeppers! There's no adjustment at the shifter!
Well now the RAM(random access memory) kicks in and I remember that the adjustment thingy was on the derailleur where the cable attaches.That's all fine and dandy except the XT derailleur is not thusly equipped:

Now I'm sort of peeved.
At myself mostly for not making sure everything would fit correctly.
Do I now take everything apart and put the old derailleur back?
That won't be fun.
So I start to think: before there were cable adjustment thingies, what did the olden guys do?
Of course you young whipper snapper! Just adjust it at the derailleur.
Images of being on a high mountain pass somewhere in the French Alps appeared in my head as I took hex wrench and pliers to derailleur and made the proper adjustments.
"Go on ahead Luigi! I'll meet you at the pass!"
Or something like that.
In the end, I gloated over my handiwork, proud that my predicament did not incite an eBay search for another potentially costly remedy.
At least for the time being.
It's a pretty good excuse for me to convert the Barn Door over to nine speed by getting some new shifters, cassette, etc.
See? There's a bright side to everything.
Well, bring you this little anecdote of cycling improvisation to segue into something much more important.
I've also made a little adjustment in life.
A little attitude adjustment if you will.
To tell you the truth, I'm a bit surprised at the results.
The other day, I caught myself humming a ditty while on the way to work.
A ditty!
I had to stop and reflect.
What was this madness that had suddenly overwhelmed me?
What was causing me to create a melodic sound like a milkmaid running through the fields on the way to the barn on a warm sunny day?
I made an adjustment.
A little one to be sure, yet just enough to facilitate a drastic change in my Freudian subconscious.
Or is it Jungian?
Of course this adjustment took some fiddling around with, just like the derailleur, until I got it just right.
Now that it's done, it seems like everything is just humming along.
Get it? Humming? Nevermind.
So, just when I was considering a rather large change, I did a little tweaking and now I have all my gears again.
Or something like that.
Tomorrow is Furlough Friday.
Looking forward to getting out and eating up some miles.
Now that everything is adjusted just right.

Monday, April 26, 2010

The Day After Yesterday

I guess this means I'm still alive.
Kinda sorta.
The Haleiwa Metric Century Ride was great!
I think.
Taking pictures was kinda far from my mind so the camera stayed holstered.
Here's one image that will stick with me until next year:

That's pretty much the view I had for forty something miles of exasperation. My brother way ahead of me.
Okay, not really. Mostly.
Here's what the ride route looked like:

We got off at the back of the pack which was about seven hundred plus strong. It was pretty cool seeing all those cyclists heading out on the highway pretty much single file going out into the clear morning.
It turned out to be a gorgeous day.
Here's a pic of one of the aid stations around 20 clicks out:

My brother and I speculated that most of the riders turned back here. The returning pack passed us going the other way someplace past here. I forgot to check the mileage. The returning peloton was about twenty strong, hammering down the highway.
Made me feel slow. I think my brother wanted to hit the gas, but thankfully he had mercy on my soul and he didn't crush it.
Which was the story of the day.
Every time my brother would slow down and draft someone, I thanked my lucky stars and hoped he wouldn't overtake. Not that he left me with much of a draft; every time he went down on the aerobars, it felt like I was riding solo.
The wind was an ego crusher, for me anyways. It wasn't very strong, just relentless as we headed south along the coast. If it wasn't for my iron legged brother pulling me along, I would have been toast before the turn around.
Seriously burnt toast.
The halfway point was across the street from a 7-11.
My brother fueled up and I had a Snickers Ice Cream Bar.
Here is where we ran into our only mechanical trouble of the day:

The bicycle gods must have taken pity on me for his flat gave me time to recharge my legs.
Not that it really helped.
By the time we got going again, most of the riders were gone. I estimate there were less than twenty people behind us:

The weather couldn't have been more perfect! The ride back was with the wind, which helped me sort of keep up with Iron Legs in front me. I guess he remembered me for we stopped off at Kahana Bay to chat with a Japanese gentleman who said he was coming back to do the Honolulu Century Ride later this year.
The water was crystal:

I wish I had taken more pics but the dude I was following was cranking along his merry way occasionally checking back to see if I was still with him.
The view was pretty much the same all the way back.
Sunset Beach, Pupukea(Sharks Cove), Waimea Bay, it was all flat with crystal clear waters. If I had taken any pictures, they would have looked like a postcard or something out of a travel brochure.
I'm telling you, there were so many places I wished I could have just rode my bike right into the water.
Lucky thing I didn't for I probably would have drowned.
I was pretty much done by the time we passed Waimea Bay and headed into Haleiwa.
Here's the last aid station at Sunset Beach:

As you can see, there was no one there but my brother and I and a couple of other riders. Coming in, it felt like I was the only one left out there.
Actually I don't think I was last.
I believe there were a couple of other people that came in behind me.
It was pretty close though.
Elapsed time was right about 4 hours at an average of 14.2 mph.
I don't think it was a full 100k.
Anyways, we had a nice lunch later that was like taking a couple of quaaludes. I got home and fell into a fatigue induced coma.
Iron Legs and I were talking about how it would be cool to ride from Makapu'u(a little south of Flat Tire Central) and head north up the coast to Haleiwa. It would be around a seventy mile ride along almost the whole length of the Eastern coast of Oahu and the wind would be at our backs.
We just need someone to pick us up at the end of our ride.
The route would look something like this:

That would be epic!
Summer is coming up so I may try to ride as far as Kaaawa, which was the turnaround point on Sunday.
Just to scope things out don't you know.
Anyways, it was a great ride. Easy to see why it's rated as one of the top 50 rides in these United States(by Bicycling Magazine).
I'll be going back for more torture next year.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Into the Abyss

I didn't even remember doing it.
I mean I remember, I just forgot.
Or maybe I wanted to forget.
Then it arrived.
Admittedly, I was a bit embarrassed.
I mean just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, I pull one out of my hat.
The reasoning behind it was my presta valve caps kept breaking:

I guess I was screwing them on too tight or something and the tops kept breaking off.
So one night a couple of weeks ago(I'm guessing) the evilness overcame me and I apparently ordered these:

First of all, I blame whoever it was that decided to make machined anodized presta valve stem caps. I mean if no one bothered to make them, I wouldn't have had to purchase them.
Now normally, I wouldn't even bother to mention such a small acquisition. They are just two little caps after all. I don't remember how much they cost; I'm guessing it was somewhere in the range of a Whopper Meal.
I do feel compelled to mention them though.
Well, after examining them for about ten minutes and admiring the knurled finished and lovely color(matches my wheels!), it suddenly dawned on me how absurd this bicycle bling thing has become.
Valve stem caps!
I had actually bought valve stem caps!
I held my two precious decorations in my hand, slumped back on the couch and let out a large sigh.
The truth really does hurt.
I had finally gone off the deep end.
Yes friends, I have stared into the abyss and become the abyss.
I got off the couch and installed them on my wheels.
There was no joy, no sense of content or accomplishment. I just took off the old caps and put the new ones on.
Depression began to set in.
I mean I had sunk pretty low.
I sat there and shook my head in disgust.
Well, like all things, there is a bright side!
Looking at my eBay watched items, I suddenly realized that after the valve stem caps, how could anything else I get be considered frivolous?
I have inadvertently set a new standard!
Now those titanium fasteners, anodized chain stay bolts and red zip ties are elevated to needy/useful status.
Okay, maybe not the red zip ties.
Those red valve stem caps have released me!
Nothing I purchase for my bike will ever, ever match the uselessness of those caps!
In fact, everything else will be easily justified.
Well, maybe not the red anodized cable ends. That would sheer madness.
I'm not quite there.
Anyways, tomorrow is the big day.
Moi and my knurled red anodized valve stem caps will be tackling the Haleiwa Metric Century Ride. Waves are up on the North Shore so hopefully I'll get some nice images.
Tomorrow is also a landmark day for another reason.
Stay tuned for a very Special Edition.
Okay, maybe not so special.
I mean not as special as those valve stem caps.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Tie Me Kangaroo Down

Or something like that.
Here's a ditty that sticks in your head by Rolf Harris.
The only tune I know of that has a platypus in it can be found here.
I was thinking of that song while I changed out the cables on my bike.
The Shimano SIS shifter cables come in a complete set that includes the outer housings, cables, and all the small thingys you need to do one bike.
Also some other extra small thingys that always make me nervous cause I never know if they are actually extras or if I was supposed to use them:

I read up on many cable sets before going with Shimano. I was thinking of Gore and Yokozuna or something but it was difficult for me to justify the cost. I mean really, these are freakin cables!
I figured you can't go wrong with the good ole Shimano.
Replacing the cables is a simple operation on the XT shifters. There's an access hole where you just pull out the old cable and thread in the new one:

Man, check out the corrosion those bolts! I need to change them out to titanium or something.
By the way, you don't really need them, but it's nice to have a set of cable cutters when you trim the housings. Side cutters will take some wrestling with and your cuts may not be clean. I went out and bought a pair but I ended up only making two cuts.
Your mileage may vary.
The cables are different from my old Jagwires in that they are coated with what Shimano says is fluorine:

Now I figure if it's good for your teeth, it must be good for your cables right? No wonder my teeth feel all nice and smooth after those dentist visits.
Oh! Fluorine, not fluoride!
Wait! Fluorine is a gas!
Anyways, I sort of dig how they are black cause they match my bike and now it looks all stealthy and cool.
So it took me about twenty minutes to measure and cut all the housings and thread in the gas coated cables. Add about another ten minutes to readjust the derailleurs and in all it was about a half hour job.
How do they work?
Well, to tell you the truth, I never expected to see any difference in performance. I mean really, they're only cables.
Boy was I wrong!
The tightness that was in the shifting is gone!
I can really tell the difference in the rear shifter. The upshifts just pop, pop, pop. The downshifts are effortless.
By the way, I'm running a traditional, not rapid rise.
I mean compared to the old cables, it sure seems effortless. There is very little resistance in the thumb shifts.
The front seems to take a bit less effort also.
Of course this is all on the stand.
If there's any on the road difference I'll be sure to let you know.
So far the Shimano SIS cable set is Flat Tire Approved!
Now, the bad part.
I must get the brake cable set for it will bother me to no end knowing that my cables don't match.
You can get the shifter set on evil eBay for around $35 and the brake cable set for $25.
Good choices if it's time for a change.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Famous Last Words(FLWs)

One more pull.
That's the potter's famous last words.
You got this really nice tall cylinder of clay going on the wheel and you think to yourself, I'll just crank it up one more time.
Of course it collapses.
Famous last words usually precede a disastrous event that could have been prevented if the FLW had not been uttered.
Or if better judgement had prevailed.
I got it.
Don't worry, I've done this lots of times.
Push harder.
Try that lever.

Of course no one knows it's FLWs until after they say it. It's one of those things you have to experience yourself in order to fully understand it. Once you do, it tends to leave a lasting impression and the recollection of that moment usually prevents one from repeating such an act of recklessness.
Of course there are those that just don't learn.
I wonder what this thing does.
No one tells
me what to do.
That'll never happen again.
This is going to be a walk in the park.

I'm not sure what causes some to be repeat offenders, though I could probably hazard a guess. The ones that err on the other side of caution or perhaps are much too sure of themselves seem to fit the profile.
I try to give these sorts a wide berth.
I mean sometimes you can just see it coming.
Give it some more gas.
I wonder what this button does.
If he can do it, so can I.
Lightning never strikes twice.

Then there are the unspoken FLWs.
You know you've done it. These are the FLWs that can never be said out loud for they border on the outrageous.
If only you could hear yourself say it, you'd know it.
You think others don't know, but oh, it's so obvious.
Unfortunately, you don't figure it out until it's too late.
She'll never find out.
No one will ever know but me.
I look good in this.
This is a great idea.

No one ever likes to admit their FLWs.
Too embarrassing; too self incriminating.
Yet, one should be proud.
It requires a high level of skill to reach FLWs greatness.
I'll never write a blog.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Vision Quest

Linda Fiorentino is hot.
The Madonna soundtrack helped too.
Matthew Modine was really young.
Anyways, I got my new glasses the other day.
That's how I felt when I first put them on.
It was like I got, well, new glasses.
I remember way back when I first got glasses. Putting them on was sort of a novelty.
Look Mom! I got glasses!
The world brightened up, contrast took on a whole new meaning, and I could finally read the street signs.
When I put on my new glasses, it was like I had new eyeballs.
The new new glasses I mean.
I can't believe how long I had been going on with those foggy, scratched up reasonable facsimiles of glasses.
I ain't kidding.
Everything in those glasses looked like they came out of one of those old thermal imaging fax machines, all blurry and mushy like.
Now, everything is razor sharp!
With high contrast!
I must say, it's a big change.
See sunglasses for me, have always been about replicating a constant state of dusk. I mean I wanted everything to be dark. I wanted it to feel like night.
Being a nocturnal person, a night owl if you will, everything flows better at night. Art should only be made at night.
One of my motto's was "it's nighttime somewhere" if you catch my drift.
That was in my other life.
Now, it's important for me to see better during the day.
I mean stuff like potholes, cracks in the pavement, sticks, gravel and golf ball sized nuts are all potential hazards that now are to be avoided. Mostly I wanted to be able to transition out of the dark shadows and into the light without a loss of contrast.
Riding my bike don't you know.
So it was time to hang up the ole neutral grey Wayfarers and go high tech.
I had worn Oakleys before so I sort of new what to expect but my new shades(I don't really know if I can still call them shades) have exceeded my expectations.
Seriously, I feel like I'm walking around in a different world everything is so sharp and crystal. What I mean is I'm sitting here in the dark watching Law & Order and it's like wow!
My Oakleys don't really make things darker despite the fact that the light transmission these lenses are supposed to be around nine percent. In fact it seems like they make things brighter, without hurting or fatiguing your eyes.
I was warned that because of the correction and the curvature of the lens I might experience a kind of fish eye effect, but it turned out to be negligible.
There is one thing strange though: when I look down at the ground, it seems like I'm really short.
I mean I'm vertically challenged to begin with but when I look down at the ground, it seems like I'm about two feet tall.
Interesting effect.
Other than that experience I feel like a shorter new man.
I gotta say though, wearing them makes me a bit uncomfortable. I mean coming from the ultimate cool of Wayfarers to the more contemporary look of wraps makes me feel like a juvenile delinquent.
See, when I tried them on, I wasn't concerned with how I looked in them, I was more interested in what I could see through them.
They give me a bit of attitude.
So I have named them my Punk glasses.
Not that I really needed any more attitude, but you never know.
It's all about perceptions anyways.
When I'm out riding around on my bike, hopefully I'll at least look fast.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Don't Do the Crime if You Can't

You know the rest.
It must have been the weather for the washing machine hit both spin cycles with nary a shimmy or sound.
The load must have been perfectly balanced in there for if it is just one underwear off, the machine starts to shake like a Polaroid picture.
Haven't heard that one in a while.
So anyways, I was telling you about how wonderful the XTR derailleur shifts and all that. Well it does.
I thought XT was good compared to the POS(positively outstanding shifting) Alivio stuff and it is. It was also about the same as SRAM X5, which came on the bike.
The SRAM X5 stuff seemed to like to shift better under load, which I do from time to time. There was nothing wrong with it except the rear shifter is a bit different from Shimano in that you don't pull to upshift, you push.
The reason I went to XT is because I just had to know what all the hype was about.
XT was about all I was willing to spend on. Notice I said was. It shifted great, but if you read my Best Chain Lube of the Modern Era, you know that it was a bit fickle.
Well let me tell you, this XTR stuff shifts. And shifts. And shifts.
The engagement is nothing short of brilliant.
Here's the thing. You absolutely cannot cross chain on this set up.
I run a 44/32/22 up front and a 12-23 in back. According to Shimano, I am just over the capacity of a medium cage derailleur. There's no way I would have tried this if I was running say a 11-32 or something in back.
Here's what it looks like big ring small gear:

Sorry about the quality of the pics but I had to run my flash.
Anyways, that looks pretty normal.
Wait, this gets good.
Here's what it looks like big ring, big gear:

That still looks okay. In fact, the XT long cage derailleur was stretched out much farther than this.
The combination where it gets ugly is this:

Gee Mr. Flat Tire, what happened to your derailleur? Did something scare it?
It's still there all tucked away. In fact, that's what it looked like when it came in the mail. I didn't even try turning the cranks.
I must remember not to try the combination of the granny gear and the small gear.
So the medium cage works, as long as you take care not to cross chain.
Now to be honest, I'm not sure if the quality of the shift has to do with the XTR being a medium cage or not.
All I know is that it engages.
Positively, thank you very much.
I got some XRT cables coming in for if you look really good, you still won't be able to see the extra cable coming off the end of the derailleur. That's because there isn't any.
Extra cable I mean. Okay, maybe like 3/16 of an inch is hanging off there. Not even enough to crimp on a cable end thingy.
So what's up with the doing the crime thing?
Well, I was about to launch myself out the door this afternoon, when domestic responsibilities reared their ugly head.
See washing clothes above.
Gotta have clean jerseys don't you know.
So to atone for my laziness, I went and cut my hair.
The girl with the clippers made me pay.
I still can't believe she laughed at me.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


The Flat Tire Staff

Honolulu- The Department of Education today announced that due to budget cuts, school bus service will be be drastically reduced. A DOE spokesperson said that the buses were traded in for double hulled canoes.
"The students that chose this method of transportation will also be rewarded one half credit of physical education."

Sunday Final

Wonky weather.
Willy wonky weather.
Willy wonky weather was wonderful.
Willy wonky weather was wistfully wonderful.
Oh, sorry.
Got carried away there.
When I hit the road this morning it was the same grey skies the tri-peeps were suffering under.
By the end of the ride it was the polar opposite:

Yes, Mr. Bluesky was back.
This was at the tail end of thirty miles, most of which was racked up under windy blustery conditions. I don't know what's up with the weather for the Doppler radar shows all clear, then these low dark clouds roll in and it looks all dark and grey and bad and all off a sudden the clouds break and sunshine pours down instead of rain.
Wonky I tell you.
So I'm trying to work some new roads into my route just to add some mileage and change things up. Twenty five to thirty miles is the new benchmark. Now I just have to make up my mind and hit some hills.
My climbing really sucks.
Big time.
Single digit sucking up sloping sidewalks.
Well, to start off small, there's a long but not very steep incline that leads up to the main highway. At the intersection is a small park and a fountain that sort of marks the entrance to Kailua.
In all the time I've lived here, I've never visited that fountain:

I sat there for a bit and thought about that.
Boy, in all the years I've lived here, I've never been to the fountain.
Passed by it thousands of times, sat in traffic and oogled it, saw someone pour soap in it so it got all foamy, saw kids play in it, but never actually sat by it.
That's pretty sad.
If I hadn't taken up riding a bike, I might never have gone there.
That's even sadder.
Pathetic even.
What riding a bike does, or what it allows me to do, is to check out all these places I would never attempt to visit in my car.
That's a good thing, even if my legs have to explode in order for me to get there.
Okay, not really. It wasn't that steep of a hill.
I still sucked wind going up.
That's a bad thing for yesterday I picked up my packet for the Haleiwa Metric Century Ride next week:

Another chance to intimately explore someplace I've only really passed by in a car. I mean, I've been to Haleiwa before(hopefully, there will be a swell and I'll get some big wave pics!), but mostly as a tourist; just visiting. I'll get the opportunity to get up close and personal, this time on my bike.
Sixty miles is ten miles more than I've ever ridden so I hope nothing explodes. My brother will be with me so in case something happens, he can tell everyone the story.
I'll probably ride twice then take the rest of the week off.
Hopefully, by next Sunday, my legs will be mean, lean, muscularly sculpted Epogen powered pistons of destruction.
Then again, I haven't ridden with my brother in a while, so I hope he doesn't rip my legs off!
Oh, and that XTR derailleur is freaking awesome.
More on that later.
Breaking Bad is on so I gotta go.

Sunday Early Edition

Got up with the chickens to see the bike portion of the Lanikai Triathlon.
At first I wasn't going but then I thought, oh well, I'm already up so off I went.
By car.
Sorry, but it was still sort of dark and I wussed out.
So anyways, one of Honolulu's finest and I stood at the street corner waiting for the first guys out of the chute.
I forgot to time the first guy; he was pretty far out ahead of everybody else. Then the rest of the fast guys started to show up:

It was overcast this morning and I had the camera on manual. I took me a while to find the right settings. Pardon.
The rest of the pack was not far behind:

The Lanikai Tri is not a full length race. The bike part is only about twenty kilometers. I guess it's sort of a warm up to the other triathlons coming up.
Here's a brave soul on a single speed:

Another brave soul who rode what she brought:

I used this opportunity to try and take some "at speed" images. I didn't do too well. The bad lighting meant I had to slow down my shutter speed all of the pics were blurry.
This was par for the morning:

It's easy to see where Cervelo makes their money. There were a whole bunch of other bikes but the Cervelos were out in force.
Not that there's anything wrong with Cervelos or anything.
I'm also beginning to dig the sound of those aero wheels(oh oh!). They make a sort of "I'm coming at ya" sound that's kinda neat.
Not that I would get some Zipps or anything. Well, if they were a really, really good deal, maybe.
Okay, maybe not.
So anyways, the first guy came back around in about twenty minutes. He was probably rocking somewhere around a 25mph average speed.
Then came everyone else:

A great way to start the morning.
Breakfast of champions.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Only the Lonely

No, not the Roy Orbison classic.
I was thinking of the song by the Motels and the beautiful voice of Martha Davis.
Not what this is about.
I was thinking about how I prefer to ride my bike alone.
I mean I don't not like to ride with others, I just rather ride by myself.
When you ride solo, you don't have to worry about someone behind you or in front of you. You set your own pace and distance and just go.
For me, the allure of riding is to get away from people.
Not that I'm anti-social or anything.
Okay, you guys that know me, stop laughing.
I'm trying to make a point here.
In much of my working, making a living life, I've had to deal with people. Now that's not a bad thing; I wouldn't have done it if I didn't enjoy it.
I just don't need to interact with people all the time.
Social butterfly I'm not. I prefer the cocoon thank you.
Riding is sort of my cocoon if you please, a place where it's just me and me. I get to ride around for a couple of hours and be alone with my thoughts. A time for me to reflect on the day and do a bit of self assessment. I get to clear my head, breath in some fairly clean air, and reset the resolve I need to make it through the week.
These are things that I can't do if I'm worrying about someone on my wheel.
At the same time, I seek out a kind of reassurance.
By reassurance, I mean a sense of place. That what I'm doing, my actions, are not completely unique.
Seeing others riding alone comforts me.
Knowing that there are others out there, like me, makes me part of a group.
Sort of.
If you know what I mean.
There is no secret hand shake or code. For the most part, we ignore each other as we pass on the road.
A nod perhaps, or maybe a "hey" is all you'll get from us.
A club that everyone, yet no one belongs to.
Exclusive membership don't you know.
It's just me and road today baby.
No cars, no pedestrians, nothing.
Just me and that white line that seems to go on forever.
It seems like I've been pedaling forever.
I wish I could go on forever.
Just me and my bike.
Going down the road.

Friday, April 16, 2010

X's and more X's

So I decided I might as well make it official.
I just can't seem to stop myself.
I mean really, I can't.
So let's all acknowledge it and say that I'm now officially clinically insane.
Evil eBay got me again!
I'm not going to do it.
I'm not going to do it.
I'm not going to do it.
Then I did it:

My brother said not to.
Evil Hoku just shook his head.
I just can't control myself anymore.
Now, by ride is a mix of XTR, XT, and SLX.
Why, why, why did I ever get into this bicycling thing?
It's madness I say.
There should be a support group or some kind of rehab to check in to when it all spirals out of control.
It's too late for me, friends.
I have tasted the evil and I like it.
There is no stopping me now.
I need an intervention!
Or something.
It's so shiny. So light. The machined surface just begs you to touch and caress it.
Spin little wheels, spin!
Spin faster!
Shifting perfection.
Click, click, click.
I need more!
Something more I tell you!
Something like a matching XTR front derailleur.
My right eye is beginning to twitch. I rub my hands together in anticipation as I sit and stare at the evil auctions.
Buy It Now! it says.
Buy It Now!
Yes! Yes! Buy It Now!
From deep within my soul I summon the last gram of self control that still remains.
Grams? it is the grams that did it!
I saved thirty grams!
Yes! There are more grams to save.
The bike must become lighter!
Lighter means faster, no?
Yes, yes! Faster!
The voices never stop.
Buy it now.
Buy it now.
Wait. The wretched flame that burns within withers to embers.
There is no more fuel.
The check book is bare.
I see things now with a lucid clarity I have not known for some time.
From back before the time of the bicycle.
Who am I?
Where am I?
The fever has passed.
It simmers until automatic deposit and the account boils and the eyes madly begin to search out all things X.
I tell this tale as a warning.
Do not tread where I have gone.
The cost is great and the rewards are few.
There is no hope for me, my friends.
I cannot see past the search function.
I am compelled.
I must obey my master!
It never ends.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Life Imitates Art

If you consider a cheesy, badly written television sit-com art.
Sit back, grab a cold beverage cause this is going to be good.
Trust me(famous last words!).
There's more post fodder!
Famous last words!
Maybe tomorrow.
Anyways, if you've been following along at home, you know that here, in our beautiful state, the kids only go to school like four days a week.
Okay, not really cause this week and last week they have five day weeks, but next week and next next week they have four day weeks.
The brainiac reasoning behind this is that our state, like many, sort of ran out of cash. Ginormous deficit and all that.
So, the powers that be decided to relieve the kids of something like three weeks of school.
Don't have to pay the teachers and don't have to turn on the lights.
Reasonable cost saving measures don't you know.
Well, it turns out some people didn't think that move was in the best interest of the kids.
Ya think?
Oh, and this abbreviated schedule is good to go next year too.
So, the battle has been raging on here to get the kids off the beaches and back into the classrooms.
Wait just a minute here.
Who's going to pay for this?
Not me Jack! Nosireee!
Now being on an island and all, we got this good ole gov'ment fund that's for hurricane relief. Last couple of times Mother Nature decided to visit here, the insurance companies were caught short, so the gov'ment being the care takers of the people, well, except for the kids, has this fund to use in case of disasters.
This is sort of turning into a disaster.
See, the money's there, it's just that no one can figure out how much of it to use.
So this drags on.
And on.
Except now it gets interesting.
A group of concerned parents and citizens have taken up residence in the Gov'ner's office to protest the situation.
They believe the Gov'ner is ultimately responsible for all this and the Gov'ner believes it rests in the hands of the unions.
This sort of reminds of playing basketball and the ball lands in some dog poop and suddenly no one wants any part of it.
Well, this sit in has been going on now for like six days and now, arrests have been made. Check it out here.
No seems to have any intention of backing down.
Now this is entertainment.
Reality T.V. at it's best.
Now if we could only get Dog the Bounty Hunter to show up, the ratings would go through the roof!
The suspense and tension builds as we wait to see what happens next.
Stay tuned for the next episode of The Biggest Loser.

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Spin Cycle

My washing machine does the spin cycle walk.
Every time I wash my jerseys, the load gets uneven and the drum does a Tahitian dance imitation inducing the machine to start waddling on the cement.
Would be quite entertaining if it wasn't so annoying.
Must get that checked out.
Sorry, but that is not what this is about.
See today is the first day I began to work out on the bike in earnest.
Of course Oscar Wilde taught us all about the Importance of Being Earnest so I won't get into that.
I will say that after today, I realized that I wasn't being earnest enough. I mean I realized that I have another gear in these old but muscularly sculpted legs.
After reading up on actually training on the bike, I figured I'd start doing some intervals. Basically they are like suicides; go like hell, rest, go like hell again till you puke or drop dead.
Well, I didn't puke and I'm sitting here typing this so I probably was doing them wrong. Though the intervals I did hurt enough to give me a taste.
What I did today was to try and hold my max cadence for about thirty seconds, rest for like ten minutes then rev up again for another thirty seconds.
Okay, I didn't rest for ten minutes but I sure wanted to.
After doing that four times, I sort of felt like Superman after drinking a Kryptonite cocktail.
Gravity sucks.
Resistance too.
I know now that I'm a cyclist for in a warped kind of way it was a good hurt.
Or something.
I think.
I'm going to try and keep doing this at least two times a week.
Gotta take a rest/recovery day don't' you know.
I'll try and increase the duration and amount of reps I take.
We'll see if it makes me any faster or if it helps increase my cadence.
Not that I'm obsessing over speed or anything even if two women passed me on the road the other day. I mean they didn't even call "left" or anything, they just came out of nowhere and passed right by me.
Boy, I must look like Rodney Dangerfield or something. I guess I probably ride like him.
I'm telling you, after this, I'm going to be so fast that those dudes on le Tour better watch out!
Okay, not really.
I must be so tired I've become delusional.
I also moved my cleats back by a couple of millimeters. Now I'm about a half centimeter back from by original position. It feels a bit strange; I also moved the seat up a skosh, but it feels okay.
By okay I mean I don't think it's any better, but it isn't any worse either. It just feels like I'm riding a different bike. I guess I'll get used to it.
I keep telling myself that I'm doing all of this so that I'll enjoy riding the bike more.
Does that make sense?
Does any of this make sense?
Spin, spin, spin!
Spin for the win!
Or until I puke or drop dead.
Chuck is on, gotta go.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

The Best Chain Lube of the Modern Era

Yes sports fans, the results are in!
After endless days and countless of hours of testing, it is time.
It is time to reveal the Best Chain Lube of the Modern Era(BCLMA)!
I've been a using Prolink since I started riding. I liked how easy it was to apply and the fact that you didn't really need to clean the chain to re-lube.
Well, my last cassette, using Prolink, only lasted like 2700 miles.
My ride is mostly on pavement, but I do ride near the beach so sand and grit tends to muck things up.
Well, it seemed like my cassette shouldn't have worn out so fast and it's not like I can afford to change those things out every 2500 miles, so I changed my lube to T9 Boeshield. It seems that a worn chain leads to a worn cassette.
Boeshield works great. It's made by Boeing and supposedly they use the stuff to protect aircraft parts or something. I also use the stuff on top of my table saw and it works great there too. It's a dry lube so it didn't attract too much dirt and dust.
The problem was that it just didn't last. I got maybe sixty miles(or less!) out of it before I had to reapply.
So, I looked for something else. What I wanted was something that wouldn't attract dirt and last around a hundred miles.
The contestants:
Dumonde Tech
Rock N Roll Extreme
Chain-l No.5
I chose them because like the Prolink and Boeshield, they all had great reviews on and I got a free sample of Chain-l from some vendor off evil eBay.

Dumonde Tech: Hated it! Okay, not really but it didn't last one week. Similar to the Rock N Roll and Boeshield in that you apply, let dry, then wipe off excess. Chain stayed clean, that was good. Started getting balky shifts right from the beginning. Not good. Gave the rest to my brother.

Rock N Roll Extreme: I believe this is a wax based lube. The good thing about this lube is that you don't have to clean the chain; you just keep adding the stuff on. Supposedly it's a cleaner also so keep applying and wiping off. Chain stays clean(so far) and shifts are normal. I have this on the Barn Door for a long term test. Reminds me of Prolink(just keep adding and wiping), so I'm not sure how great this stuff will be.

Chain-l No.5: Okay, this stuff looks and smells suspiciously like 90w gear oil. Except it's really sticky. You apply it link by link(not that difficult) and let it sit, then wipe off. And wipe off. And wipe off. Then you wipe it off again. After that, it runs like a champ. First time you use it, your chain and cassette will get all grimy, but that goes away after you use it again.

The Flat Tire Best Chain Lube of the Modern Era goes to: Chain-l No.5!

Rock N Roll is a close second but the Chain-l wins flavor of the month.
I liked it so much that I already bought a full sized bottle($12 shipped). My sample, which looked to be around an ounce or so, lasted for five applications, so if you get the full size, that should be good for around half a year(if you apply once a week). I don't know how long the application lasts for as I said, I clean and apply once a week, but it looks good to go even after four days of riding. That's a good thing for to tell you the truth, I get lazy and sometimes let the chain go for two weeks. Runs quiet and I don't know if it's the lube, but shifting has been spot on. That's more than I can say about any of the other lubes I tried. It can be somewhat messy, but if you wipe off the chain right after you let it soak in, meaning run it in while you wipe it, you should be okay. Make sure to wipe until the spider webs are gone; you'll know what I mean. Don't forget to wipe off the excess from the chainring and jockeys too. The directions say to apply only when needed so this stuff may last a while.
If you can't find Chain-l at your favorite shop, you can order direct here.
Flat Tire Approved and Tested!
Remember, as usual, your results may vary.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Kawai Nui Marsh

Great ride today!
Especially since my legs decided to come along and help. I guess they got tired of hearing me whine about their lackluster performance.
I was able to push a little hard today and despite a wind that would have cancelled le Tour, I did okay.
Since I was feeling so good, I decided to add some junk miles to my ride so I went off and checked out the marsh.
When I first began riding, the marsh was an essential part of my route; now not so much. The levee that extends across is about a mile and a quarter and it's out in the open so it's brutal when the wind is blowing:

The run is also flat and sort of boring, so nowadays, I rarely ride it.
Anyways, I get to the end of the levee and what do I see?

At first I think my perspiration drenched eyes were deceiving me for there is never anything going on at the little park.
Well today, it seems they had some kind of conservation thing going on and there was some information on the marsh:

The reason I was so surprised to see all this going on is that the park is not exactly a high traffic area. In fact, except for the occasional joggers and people walking their dogs, hardly anyone ventures out on the levee.
That is good and bad.
I'll get back to this.
So I grab a pamphlet that explains how there are plans to create a visitors center and maybe some programs to educate people about the wetlands.
Now I sort of have a problem with this.
It's a sort of why fix something that ain't broke kind of thing. I mean if they want to preserve the area, why draw attention to it?
I'm all for education and all that, but really, if someone wanted to find out about the history of the marsh, they can always go to the library.
I don't want to sound like a party pooper or something, but it's not like there are hoards of people breaking down a fence trampling all over the place.
Which is just what a visitors centers might bring.
Let's preserve the area by inviting more people to wander around the place.
I'll never see that turtle again!
Now I don't want to come off as all selfish or something cause it's not about what I want.
Okay, sort of.
It's more about changing something that doesn't need to be changed. If people want to go and check the place out, that's fine.
I don't think we need to invite them.
As of today, there is full access to the area.
I've never seen trash or signs of dumping or anything(okay, some dog poop once in a while).
Today, I passed four people on the levee.
That's one person every quarter mile.
I like it that way.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Awkward Silence, Who's Bad?

I'm becoming a fan of the Awkward Silence(AS).
You know what I'm talking about, those times where you want to say something, but just aren't sure what or if you should.
I think the AS is an acquired skill. Although they may seem like spontaneous moments, when you have time to reflect you realize that you learned how to do it. The trick is to know when to use it.
"So, when are you expecting?"
That is probably the most famous pre-Awkward Silence phrase and it's also probably the most dangerous. A if looks could kill, you'd be dead sort of thing.
Asking a woman if she is expecting when she's not will bring you nine months of incredibly bad luck.
And an awkward silence.
If you are a professional that is.
You can tell the rookies, they are ones that hem and haw and say with their most embarrassed look, "oh sorry, I just assumed.."
Can you see the error of their ways?
Can you dig yourself a deeper hole?
Have you ever wished you could disappear?
Now experts, will at this moment, introduce the stealth of the Awkward Silence. Although it may seem like it's embarrassment, it's not.
You see, the ball is now in the other court.
For the AS to work, you must wait for a reply.
I know it's difficult, but stand your ground. It helps if you can appear to be desperately sincere or at best, totally clueless.
The AS forces the other person to make a decision: attack or defend.
If they choose to attack, you have already won for now the other party is the bad guy and if they choose to defend, you may not even have to apologize.
Use the AS with caution as we at The Flat Tire are professionals.
Years of research and dumb ass remarks went into the development of the Awkward Silence.
This brings us to what is now officially the Greatest Dumb Ass Phrase(GDAP) ever uttered by a teen: my bad.
The phrase just begs for a question.
At the very least, a question mark followed by an exclamation point.
My bad.

If you are like me, you can even use the handy WTF for emphasis:
My bad.

Now don't misunderstand me, I know what they are trying to say.
I must question though, are they actually saying it?
Excuse me, but you're stepping on my foot.
Oh, my bad.
Yes, I know it's your bad, that's why I brought it to your attention.
My bad.
Well if it's your bad, what exactly are you going to do about it?
Um, my bad?
Look, how'd you like my bad foot rammed up your-

You can see how the situation could get out of control.
Let's try it the old fashioned way:
Excuse me, but you're stepping on my foot.
Oh, pardon me, I'm awfully sorry.
Quite all right, it was of little inconvenience to me.
I'll be sure to be more careful.
Have a nice day!

A very pleasant and cordial exchange of two obviously civilized people.
Now let's insert the Awkward Silence:
Excuse me, but you're stepping on my foot.
My bad.

Awkward Silence.
Um, I mean excuse me, sorry.
You're damn right you're sorry! Now move your friggin foot before I shove-

The Awkward Silence once again elicits the desired response!
From now on, every time someone uses my bad on me, they are getting an Awkward Silence.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Cycling is Fun

Cool song by Shonen Knife that can be found here. While you get the chance also check out my favorites Riding on the Rocket and the cover of the Carpenter's Top of the World.
Shonen Knife rocks!
That though, is not what this is all about.
Although my neck is still not one hundred percent, I had to get out and ride. Off I went with Barn Door.
There's just something about that bike: short rides turn into long ones.
I had planned to just go out for ten miles or so and it turned into nineteen. Mostly I wanted to see how my bobble head was holding up.
I guess I'll find out tomorrow.
Riding the Barn Door is sort of a wake up call for when I check my speed, it's not that far off from my regular bike. That's sort of depressing considering the Barn Door has a coefficient of drag of like a GAGILLION and it weighs about forty pounds. So while I'm slow on the Barn Door, I'm not that much faster on the other bike.
Let's face it though, on the other bike the main thing is not that I'm fast, but that I look fast.
It's all in the presentation don't you know.
Which is why it's also great to just get on the bike with just some shorts and a T shirt and cruise around.
That's the other part of cycling: just riding around without all that other crap that labels you a cyclist.
Don't get me wrong, all that spandex and lycra are the greatest things on earth to ride with, and I wouldn't leave to go on a long ride without them.
Sometimes though, while I'm out punishing myself, I look around at all the other people riding around in their regular non-roadie clothes and I get a bit jealous.
I mean they are having just as much fun as I am, right?
Makes me wonder if all these other people I see out there all kitted up ever just get on their bikes to just ride around?
Riding a bike, it's not just for exercise anymore.
Sure, I do it for the work out too, but that's not the only reason.
Case in point: the only time my brother ever takes out his bike is to "train" for something, like the Haleiwa Metric Century that's coming up. If it weren't for that, he wouldn't be riding.
Now he used to ride quite a bit, so maybe the glamour of cycling has worn a bit thin for him. I'm not sure if riding his bike is just a way of staying in shape or if he just likes to ride.
I think cycling appeals to the child in all of us.
I mean let's face it, if you aren't getting goofy on your bike once in a while you are doing it wrong.
Taking it way too serious.
Which is why I got this:

That's sort of what I feel like when I'm out riding around: a cream filled Twinkie in tight shorts.
It's also there to remind me to not get so full of myself.
Cycling is way too much fun.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Mirror, Mirror

Today, broken neck and all, I went in to the optometrist to check my eyeballs.
It was sort of hard on the doctor for he had to ignore the needles sticking out of my corneas. Actually, it was pretty painless for nowadays it's sort of computerized.
They still use that thingamabob that looks like it was invented during the Industrial Revolution, but it's also computer checked.
Anyways, it was time for some new glasses. Last time I had my eyes checked was four years ago. That's like twenty eight Flat Tire years.
Now I've been a Wayfarer kind of guy for some time:

I have to say that those shades served me well. They did survive my crash and they've done a fairly good job of keeping stuff out of my eyes as I ride all over the creation. Lenses though, took a walk some time ago.
Seems those coatings you order them with are not so durable since they started to peel off like three years ago. Since then, it's like I've been walking/riding around in a fog:

Tell you the truth, I didn't really notice how bad they were until one day I noticed that I couldn't read the digital clock in my car anymore.
I mean that's pretty sad.
I had to take off my glasses to read something.
So as I said, they've done a pretty good job of keeping stuff out of my eyes, yet I felt that I needed some better protection so this time I'm getting wrap arounds. Thing is, because of the curvature of the surface, they have to be custom ordered.
I guess I'll be in a fog for another couple of weeks.
But that's not what this is all about.
This is about going in and choosing the frames.
Now for those of you who don't wear glasses this task may sound simple enough on paper.
Go in, pick out a frame, done.
Unfortunately, it never goes that way.
First of all, there are about a GAGILLION different frames to choose from. That may sound like an exaggeration, but it's not.
Go into an eyeglass shop and see.
Then there is the whole trying it on thing.
I don't like to look at myself in the mirror if I don't have to. It displeases me to no end to have to try multiple frames on while at the same time trying to decide if it suits me.
Okay, what I'm really saying is "trying on frames that make me look good."
I have searched and there are no glasses that make me look good.
Not invented yet, never will be.
Well, maybe there are some that look good on me, it's just that in my opinion, nothing looks good on me.
Choosing new frames is sort of like, like, well, cutting my hair.
There comes a time when it's just impossible to put off.
It's the vanity.
I'm not the most humble person in world, but I do have a hard time modeling glasses for myself in the mirror.
I have a hard time looking myself in the eye while trying to make a fashion decision. It's always like "dude, are you serious?" or "dude, no matter what you do, you'll still look lame."
Don't get me wrong here. I think glasses do make a fashion statement.
As a matter of fact I think that women with glasses are attractive.
Think Lisa Loeb or Tina Fey.
It's just very difficult for me to choose glasses for myself. I'm not even going to talk about the added pressure of having that girl behind the counter watching you.
Then you have to make sure you are choosing from the men's section and not trying on women's frames.
How embarrassing is that?
I mean really, can't I just do this in private?
Then, when you pick up your glasses and have to try them on, you see yourself better!
It's like seeing a close-up of your face in High Definition.
I liked it better when things were fuzzy.
Anyways, this time, I think I'm going to get some good old John Boy glasses. Go for the John Denver look. The old stand bys, classics, never go out of style round wire frames.
I may not even try them on.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Taking It For Granted

This morning I woke up with a sore neck.
That doesn't actually describe the excruciating pain that shoots through my soul every time I try to turn my head.
I don't know what I did, but it sure wasn't good.
Driving to the store to get some ibuprofen was what I imagine Medieval torture was like.
Yes, yes! I'll tell you what you want to know! Just make it stop!
It actually feels like I broke something, but I'm a walking and a talking so it's probably not that bad.
It just feels like it is.
Actually, I'm sort of used to this kind of debilitating pain. See, I also used to be affected by gout every once in a while and let me tell you brothers and sisters, that is no walk in the park.
It feels more like strolling over flaming cactus plants.
Steve Martin's Cruel Shoes comes to mind.
Get gout, get familiar with the word hobble.
So anyways, my neck is really hurting and it feels like needles are being inserted into my eyes or something and I start thinking about what it's like to be healthy.
I mean most of the time I'm a pretty healthy guy.
Well, there is the dialysis part but other than that, I'm doing all right. Better in fact, than I've ever been doing.
I'm sitting here thinking about how I'm going to miss out on riding my bike today and it sort of hits me.
I have to make the best of every day.
Okay, it didn't really hit me today, it just seemed like a good time to bring it up.
You don't know how much you can miss the simple things like walking normally or turning your head until that ability is taken away.
If you've every had to get around on crutches you know what I mean. Stairs can be a major obstacle but just think, before, you could run up and down those puppies.
I had a hard time brushing my teeth this morning!
Most of the time, we go through life relatively pain free, but there are some who battle daily, just to get by.
I happen to work with someone like that.
Everyday, I watch this person struggle to do things that us normals could do in a snap and I feel humbled.
You couldn't pay me enough money to make me go through what this person goes through. Yet, every morning, that person gets on a bus and comes to school.
All of a sudden my neck ain't hurting so bad.
If you know what I mean.
My neck is going to(hopefully) get better.
I don't even want to think about what it would be like to have to live like this on a permanent basis.
My head would probably explode or something.
I'll bet this is how it felt when Elecktra King was turning the screws on James Bond's neck.
Actually, now that I mention it, if you told me I had to endure this kind of pain to see Sophie Marceau naked, I'd probably buy a ticket.
Anyways, every once in a while when you are out doing whatever it is you do, stop and think about how great it is to have all your faculties.
Wiggle your fingers and your toes, do a pirouette or some cartwheels or maybe a back flip with a quarter twist and take a deep breath and enjoy it.
When it's gone, it'll be the simple things you miss the most.

Friday, April 2, 2010

I Can't Handle the Truth

Riding my bike sucks!
Freakin big time!
No, this is no April Fool's thing, this is for real.
Suck! Suck! Suck!
For today at least.
We've been having some winds this past week and today it finally died down to a reasonable level. So out I went.
I figured, hey! I took five days off from riding so this should be good. I mean my legs should be rested and fresh so pavement, look out!
I think something is wrong with me for today, I couldn't pedal my way out of a wet paper bag. I wasn't huffing and a puffing or anything, my legs just didn't want to cooperate with me.
In fact, I think they took the day off.
Or went on strike.
Or something.
I can't remember the last time I was so miserable on my bike.
That would be last week.
I was miserable, but I was fast. er.
Fact is, today I realized how much I actually suck at riding.
Okay, maybe it was the two old guys who passed me.
That really sucked.
My brain said to go catch them, my legs said "what you talkin bout Willis?"
I looked down at them in disbelief!
Betrayed! By my own legs!
Now I can see if they were someone else's legs, I mean I wouldn't expect someone else's legs to go to work to catch two old gentlemen riding road bikes.
I did however, expect my legs to respond with the massive amount of power stored within them.
Instead of the surge of strength worthy of a nuclear reaction, I got nothing.
Like going out to start your car and all you get is a click.
The thing is, I sort of like the legs I got now, so trading them in is not an option. I mean I worked pretty hard to get them to where they are now.
Miles and miles of hard work went into sculpting these works of muscular art so it's not like I can just get up and leave them.
I feel sort of attached to them don't you know.
So, I'm hoping that today was just a fluke.
An anomaly if you will.
Perhaps I caught my legs off guard and they just weren't ready to go today. Maybe they didn't get the memo and thought that today was Law & Order day, so instead of ramping up the watts, they went into couch potato mode.
Or maybe the truth is that I suck.
When they were handing out the cycling genes, maybe I was in the wrong line and instead I got something else, like oh, blue genes.
Get it? Blue jeans? Nevermind.
Could it be that my destiny is not to ride a bicycle but to do something else?
What else is there for a short fat guy to do?
I sure ain't fast on a bike.
Unless I change my speedometer to kilometers per hour.
I bet I'd be freakin fast if I did that.
Looking down and seeing something like forty on the display would sure brighten up my day. I could just pretend like I was riding somewhere else, like say Canada or something.
I'd just have to keep a look out for old men on road bikes.
Boy, the truth sucks.