Tagged: Century

Like Bea Arthur, I Will Return.

Or was that General Douglas MacArthur? Or was that Vicki from “Small Wonder”? But I digress. Ahhhhhh, so glad to be back to the blogging grindstone after a much-needed vacation to recharge the batteries and exact carefully calculated revenge against those who have wronged or slighted me, real and imagined. Now that “venge-cation” is but a mere redshift in this gas giant’s rearview mirror, let’s get to things of a bicycle related nature. First, banana pudding (or Nanner Puddin’). Its deliciousness is inversely proportionate to its foul appearance. Something akin to a car wreck constructed from runny French cheeses yet its taste is a mouthwatering melange of sugar and nannery-goodness. I try and eat nanner puddin’ at least once a year, usually in September (to correspond with the puddin’ harvest). As luck would have it, today’s warehouse luncheon spread (graciously and lovingly set up by the good folks in HR) featured NANNER PUDDIN’ as the dessert! It was served at the proper temperature with a mighty spoon for dolloping onto an already overladen plate of veggie burger, sun chips, apple cole slaw and unconditional love. Many thanks to El Hefe for the surprise grubathon. The nanner puddin’ was exquisite. It went well with the chicken. “Delicious again Peter” (for you Beastie fans out there).

Second, while my beloved Jacques Lobster has been out of commission, The Blog has taken to riding its Pake (FRAM512015) track bike. Actually, it’s set up as a single speed but who’s counting. While the Pake of old had welds a vision-impaired nihilist would be proud of with tubing salvaged from the tank barrels of Korean War era Sherman tanks, the newest incarnation of Pake is light years from its predecessor. The welds are clean, the tubing is more robust and the matching bladed fork makes the front end handle like a Toyota Camry. What does this mean? Not sure, but if it means this frame won’t crack under the 1800 watts of power I’m generating on my post-work loop, then its good enough for me. I think we’ve been over this before with the Pake, but the decals are easier to remove than a (**edited**) after (**edited**). Kinda sucks not having a place for a water bottle cage but that’s why rear pockets were created, or this little fellow named the Two Fish Quick Cage (WBTC1730).

Third, a quick re-cap of shipping department Brad’s attempt at 100 mile glory. Brad was busy all morning receiving new bits of Craft clothing so I couldn’t get a detailed, blow by blow account, but here’s his truncated version of what went down Saturday morning… Before the account, a quick note. Brad switched to clipless pedals 24 hours before the ride. According to Brad, what better way to learn how to ride in clipless pedals than on a brisk 100 mile ride. That..kid…has…MOXY!!! After a few bits of pedal flailing and near wrecks, Brad quickly adjusted to the pedals and started his ride with Teenwolf. Around the 20 mile mark, Teenwolf had what could be described as a come to Jesus moment with Brad. Basically, Tony needed to be back in town for a wedding so the pace would be ratcheted up significantly. Even with a cue sheet, the number of turns can be daunting. Teenwolf warned Brad that he was entering a strange, dark place. Teenwolf couldn’t afford to wait on Brad so he was basically telling Brad you’re on your own if you choose to continue. Realizing he was on the cusp of greatness, Brad decided he would continue with the ride, and the remaining 80 miles. Teenwolf offered Brad an exit strategy and Brad double downed. He pushed his chips all in and accepted what hand the cycling gods would deal him. The good news, he survived. The bad news, he missed 100 by 12 miles. OK, that was Bloggy’s recap. Now, “The Ride according to Garp (Brad)”: Well, we started at 5:30 AM. I woke up at 4:30 though. It was too early. I messed with the shoes in the parking lot. I didn’t fall and after a while I got used to them. We rode and around the 20 mile mark, Tony said he was going to speed up. I told him I didn’t wake up at 4:30 to give up(!). We rode another 10 miles and we came upon a big sweeping turn. Tony was ahead of me and when I rounded the turn, he was gone. I could either go left or go straight. I went straight and that’s where I messed up. I finished my first water bottle at mile 50. Then at mile 70, I finished my second water (just plain water folks) bottle. I stopped at a rundown gas station to use the bathroom. They handed me a key to a shack behind the station. I had to hide my bike behind a septic tank from the sketchy characters loitering in the front. I had to refill my bottle in this really gross faucet. I kept riding and somehow ended up at the intersection of Farrow Road and West Beltline Blvd! I was so lost. I could tell by the increasing amount of traffic that I was going the wrong direction but I pressed on. I stopped at a gas station and called Tony. He informed me I was about 30 miles off course. I told him I was at mile 88 and that I would be more than happy to ride around for 12 miles in the parking lot, but the neighborhood was rough and I feared for my personal safety. By this time it was a little before noon and these three hobos walk over to me, eating ice cream and asking about my bike. I decided to move on a little bit. As I called coworker Kevin to come pick me up, I almost wrecked trying to clip back into my pedals as I espied a yound lady entering the gas station (Brad! Where is your focus!??). So yeah, I didn’t make it to 100, but I felt fine and afterwards, so I went and worked out. Oh yeah, I had two of those blue wrapper Clif Bars (Zbar for KIDS!!?!) for my nutrition. No cramping or anything.

Fortune Favors The Brave

Today in the subsection D break room, Brad from the Shipping Department told me Teenwolf (Inside Sales pariah) had been trying to “start some static”. Basically, Brad is an acolyte of the Octagon. Homeboy loves Mixed Martial Arts fighting and the training that accompanies it. He tested the lowest body fat percentage last Spring and could be described as being in cyborgishly optimum shape. Apparently, Teenwolf said that although Brad is in great shape, “ride” shape and “overall” shape are very different and that there isn’t a snowball’s chance Brad could complete the century Teenwolf and his cross country ride stooges were planning for Saturday morning. Brad disagreed vociferously and said that his fitness level would be more than adequate for 100 miles on the bike. This was where I found Brad’s mindset in the break room, ruminating about the possibility of doing a century ride with little to no bike riding in his legs. I went over the pros and cons with him. Pros: he was in good shape and had Teenwolf’s doubt as motivation. Cons? Cramping, saddle sores, fatigue and mental exhaustion. But then I asked him, “When was the last time you really challenged yourself? When was the last time you could look Ole Bloggy in the eye and not feel shame? This could be huge man! Huge I tell you!” as Geoff hovering in the background told him it was a bad idea and that I was mentally deranged. While it is true, that I am mentally deranged, I think this ride will do Brad some good. So what if he’s never ridden in clipless pedals? After the first few falls, his nerves will be steeled against any of the 9 or 10 thousand other dangers that await him on the circuitous lake route. He shall be astride his trusted Soma, which is steel, which won’t crack after one of Tony’s erratic lane shifts sends Brad into a ditch. Basically, Brad must do this ride to beat Teenwolf. It’s not a race, but just finishing it will be some sort of victory he/I can use to taunt Teenwolf for weeks to come until our voices are horse and our barbs ineffective and meaningless. Good luck Brad! Do not fail us.

Brad’s trusty steed, Perses…