Saturday, March 29, 2008

back in the... shop?

Finally, a bit of time on a bike. Several bikes, actually.
I started out on my old, dependable, ti VooDoo, cruising the potholes and spots of dirt and cobble that litter Santa Fe. A breakfast burrito to go and a lazy loop around downtown to the shop, which it turns out was wonderfully busy, and it seems I have a new part-time job... Next thing I know, I have the "purple people-eater" in the stand; a Masi Gran Criterium with SRAM kit that's being fussy. SRAM? Road kit? How long have I been gone? Ah, brand new, I don't feel so old anymore. It's demons exorcised, or at least contained, I "tested it out." Interesting concept; there is only one shift paddle (no brake lever movement), and it only goes one way... it took a few tries, but it works. I'm not sure how long it would take to get over pushing through a click to get the click you want. But it was a gas to ride a light, fast road bike, pushing gears.
After several laps on that, I pulled La Gazza Ladra down. A reconsideration of lever placement, some grips to satisfy till my tape comes in, and a lap was in order. A lap that ended up being a continuing cycle of mellow spins and crazy attacks, a pit-stop back at the shop to tweak something, then the cycle began anew. Finally I put my clipless pedals on and took off on a longer route, pounding as hard as I dared, skating tourists and traffic, suddenly loving to climb. How is it climbing feels so damned good on a fixed-gear bike? So smooth, so nice, so perfect...
Back to the shop, and some tube changes, some quick-fixes, a hardcase box-job headed to Hawai'i for an Iron Woman, a bunch of rentals flowing in and out, a tour returning, pedal set-ups for a first-time clipless... after 3 years away, it was almost overwhelming. My mind was like a dusty hard drive, desperately seeking RAM, answers I knew I should have. But I think I liked it. I think I want to do it again next Saturday...
Finished out the day back on the VooDoo, bouncing off anything taller than the street, making the constant upward progress that is always the end of my rides.
It's good to be back. Thanks, David. Thanks, Mike. And Al, and Art, and even Brian.

A bow to Britain in the World's; 9 golds so far. Sweet Mother of Pearl.

94 days... I have almost forgotten that I smoked.

Saturday, March 22, 2008


The first test ride of La Gazza Ladra finally happened today, and it was good. A few more touches, some last-minute bits, and she will be ready for pub crawls, alleycats, and tourist slalom. The weather is beginning to cooperate, my health is returning, and my jones is coming on strong.
Mellow Velo's new space is already rocking; service requests have tripled, rentals are flowing, sales are happening. Having direct-access parking really helps. People can swoop in, either in their cars or on their bikes, and there are usually three stands going, with a wrench available for each (unless I'm playing on one). Art has already settled in, and people have heard he is there. It's a little community now; socializing as much as actual retail work. It's a good mix.
And speaking of the boys of MV, they have generously donated my time to a number of publications. They, of course, did not bother discussing this with me first. They merely told the editors they "knew someone," and after said editors agreed, then they informed me. I love those guys; I think I'll beat them both with a pedal wrench.

Happy Easter! Go make like bunnies!

87 days!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Oh for the love of...

Sorry, kids, I've been sick all week. I missed the champagne gala, the project went on hold, and now that I can focus on some cycling in the real world, all I can say is someone please shoot Pat 'effing' McQuaid.

Saturday, March 1, 2008


It was 43 degrees at dawn this morning, which can only mean one thing... I must ride. But I have meetings, both business and esoteric, I have to babysit Skate School for a time, I have to check in on the progress of the shop, I have seven geocaches to find... what's a boy to do? Oh yeah, ride! The clients will get over the garb (or not), and everyone else has seen me dressed for the dirt before, so there. And yes, Pi, that means I'm riding the geared mtb today. Get over it.

First order of business: Go to this link and sign the petition to ask GoogleMaps to include bike routes.
Second order of business: The project goes on the stand next weekend. That's right, kiddies, in a perfect world, La Gazza Ladra will be rolling in a week. The parts are (I believe) all accounted for. I would do it this weekend, but the boys still want me to do it at the shop, and today is "transition" day for them. Plus, with all the stuff I have to do I would only frustrate myself by getting it partially assembled. So next Saturday it is.

Alright, kids, get off your collective butss and go do something; I have a wedding ceremony to write, and a world of subversive fun to experience. Not to mention several laws to break.

66 days without a cigarette, and the caffeine level has been quartered. It's a good thing I still have other vices.

edit - The link is active now... sorry