What can I do on the big dummy?

I was riding to work a few days ago (on project X) and ran into Local fast Guy Warren. He asked for more big dummy photos. At moscaline, readers are among our top priorities®, so here you go buddy:
15x 1 gallon pots of raspberry plants

Staging the raspberries

Elena and I off to dinner

Me and the wife redux

40lbs cat litter AND two shovel handles

Taking the box in which it arrived to the recyling

Typical load? 30 lbs catfood, 15lbs coffee grounds and two quesadillas...

Me, my road bike and my gear 9 miles and ~1000 feet (altitude, upward) home from the duathalon

The babybluebicycle team trying out the BD

And finally, life of the party give everyone a ride time, photos thanks to dina:

6'5" guy

Pregnant People

Rear Grab

Happy to have voted

Yee haw...

Side Saddle

Pretty hair sunvisor wife!

I can't pretend that the bike is perfect, and I will have a Big Dummy expose soon, but overall I am really really happy with it. It is much better for me than the alternatives in the same price range or less, and I did not have to build it myself, which is what it outcompeted... The bottom line is that it rides more like a real bike when loaded with more than a real bike can carry and still ride right. Dig?


Our far flung correspondents

Moscalines Santa Barbara correspondent passes on the following Santa Barbara solstice parade photos. No motorized floats allowed. Apparently most were just push floats, but a giant rickshaw and this big trike were among the few creative powered vehicles.

Excellent front wheel drive jackshaft contraption!

Even better close up of potbellied slack jawed yokels, if SB actually has yokels...

Photos courtesy of my bro


The Garagesus is good.

In the back of the 5 dollar wheeless dual burley trailer:

Lay a hidden tool kit filled with goodies:

Next to it lay a newspaper basket for 2 buckeroonies

And in that was the ultimate garage sale score for $1.

Seriously, I was getting ready to slip the neighborhood paperboy a 20 spot to "lose" his paper bag in my direction. But now I got a virtually new one for a buck.

Elena also got damn near unused gogo's, adam ant, and clash records...

All for 13 bucks. The only thing that would have been better, would have been a folded up $5 dollar bill in the hidden tool kit. But gragesus was good to me today, really good. The heliomatic tool was such a funny bonus...

The same house had a pretty nice looking red lugged Ti-Raleigh team pro frame in about my size hanging from the wall, I inquired, the wife wanted to sell it as "its been hanging there for years", but the husband was taking a nap and I did not want any part of spiriting a loved bike away from a sleeping owner even with the complicity of his wife.


Chad and Jill, the bear and the Rusty Tooth

Good buddies Chad and Jill made their triumphant return to Los Alamos yesterday from the lowlands of Albuquerque. After they did minimal duties as Los Alamos slumlords, they came on by for a ride and some dinner.

Chad and Jill below Omega canyon Bridge

When they first arrived we cruised around the neighborhood Chad hauling Jill ably on the Big Dummy and me on the Project X. Then we changed to bikes more apt for the long haul and went for a ride.
We headed up into into the Jemez on our ride with a plan for chad and I to hit the top of the 4 mile climb and come down and meet Jill on her way up at which point we would all turn around and head back to the house. It was nice and warm, but not ridiculously warm. Chad was on his new to him 1979 giant Trek, jill on her Gunner road frame and me on the Kogswell P/R loaded with some snacks and a nalgene full of ice water in the front basket.

Chad and I climbed up the mountain chatting and reminding each other how much the climb hurts until Chad torqued me in the last steep bit and rode on to the top of the climb. We met at the top, had some well deserved ice water and took some pictures and found this excellent piece of Iron:

What is it? I am guessing a giant tree shreder tooth? Or the bitey part of a big chainsaw? Bobcat front loader spike? Any ideas?

Anyway, as we went down the hill a short bit we passed Jill and she joined us for the long fast descent. This was my first long descent on the P/R and I found that it seems to be in the holds its line well, but is not a curve carver bike. It is hard to make these generalizations about bikes, though, as I am comparing it to my road bike which I have had since 1996 or so, versus less than 300 miles on the P/R most of that shorter rides. I had two 35mm tires on it and a mild front load of less than 10 pounds. It was comfy to go descend on the bike, but it was not particularly inclined to lean into the curves, once leaned, no problem. Who knows, it was definitely comfy though. I will need to use it more for dumb descending soon to see.

We regrouped at the bottom and Jill explained that she would have been up to the top sooner, but she came within 30 feet of a very large bear crossing the road, so she turned around and descended a bit until some cars came by and then resumed her climb. I still have yet to see a bear here in Los Alamos, I know they are very near, but no luck yet. Good job Jill on seeing a bear AND not getting eaten and still climbing fast.

Chad and Me up there at the top of the climb, where we found the rusted tooth:

Afterwards we joined Elena for a nice dinner of massive amounts of Pasta with homemade vegetably sauce that I neglected to photograph. Yum.

Come back to visit soon Chad and Jill!


Greed is good, or Say it ain't so Tommke

The award for the stupidest drug positive this side of the Ulrich meltdown of 02 goes to, Tom "the tominator" Boonen. Apparently I was mistaken in attributing his Mullet to impenetrable-to-Americans eurotrash fashion choices. It seems he is just a walking talking throwback to the go go eighties.

Apparently Tomito is a bit of a party boy. His driver license suspended twice in recent months due to DWI and extreme speeding in his fastcar. With his pockets full with millions in endorsements, the undying worship of all of belgium and an epic trouser python, who could blame him for some hubris? Allegations began this winter when belgie cross star Tom Vanoppen tested positive for cocaine. Vannopen in turn allegedly implicated the Bonnikie as his coke dealer. Belgian police investigated but found no evidence and did not press charges. Now he gets pipped for a cocaine positive in an out of competition drug test. What the fuck Tom? Really. The only reasonable statement in the current environment is "boy did I really fuck up, I need some help, I am taking the rest of the season off to figure some stuff out and I will see you next spring in the classics", not his weasily quasiapology that was no doubt highly influenced by his lawyers and possible pending legal action due to his positive test.

What would posses someone who is drug tested as often as a pro cyclist to develop a cocaine habit? I can't relate, but I bet it is hard to figure out that a little blow in January might lead to a need for a bit more blow during the season, but cycling is strewn with cautionary tales of people who slid from the performance enhancing habit onto the recreational habit and then on to ruin. How could you start in the first place? Especially right now? Someone should be hammering this home to these guys who have more money and skill than brains. The team doctor? A handler? I have no idea, but get on it pro cycling, I am holding you responsible if you can't figure out how to keep Boonen from turning into another Pantani.

I wrote most of this when the news broke, but did not get around to finishing it until this AM, since then I have read a bunch of good blog posts that helped me finish this one. The Boulder report weighs in here with
tongue and cheek speculation that cocaine is the forefront of the new wave of retro doping abuse leading inexorably to strychnine doping like the did in the early 1900's six day races , The BKW takes Tom to task for not getting the Memo, the short one, that should be tattooed on the inside of every pro cyclists eylids "Don't embarrass our sport anymore.". flahute has some good points from a different perspective, I don't really buy into the recreational drugs are not the same at performance enhancing argument, especially when coke is a reasonable stimulant with a long history of performance enhancing use, alone and mixed in Belgian pot, but like I said, I can't relate, others have different experiences that are worth reading. But I do whole heartedly agree with him that this is Boonen's wake up call, he needs to get turned around before the Tom Boonen memorial kermisse is all we know of him.

Surf over to velonews for the details...


Industrious Bees

Local neighborhood bees are repairing a Ducati as well as making honey. Good little bees.

We have a small hive on the backside of our property as of late last night. I hope that they yield honey, are good neighbors and quickly learn to build up schwinn cruisers for me. We are excited about the new residents and hope they live long and prosper. Bees for change!

Elena and I have talked about doing this for a long time but we probably never would have gotten around actually keeping them. Our neighbor was perturbed about the dearth of pollinators for her apple trees this year. It turns out that said neigbor works with a keeper who wanted a hive up here on the mesa and she volunteered us to host them as we have a couple of bee friendly spots in the back corner of our property adjacent to hers, so Win-win. Hopefully I can learn a thing or two without being responsible for the little fellers. The Bees seem really mellow as advertised and did not seemed perturbed by the initial onslaught of curious cats.

Our bee guests under the big lilac:


Screw you June

I have been working early since I got back from vacation trying to get some things done. It had been warm early in the week and I have been enjoying the cool early morning ride in. The weather got a bit chilly last night with some thunderstorms blowing in. I got up early this morning to the patter of rain on the window and distant thunder claps. I got ready to go, put on a rain jacket over shorts and a Tshirt and saddled up the befendered breeze and pedaled on into the cold drizzle. The really cold drizzle. About a half mile into my commute to work I noted the rain was blowing horizontally across my path. As I crossed the bridge over the canyon I noted the rain was falling slowly and was unusually white. As I sat at the interminable light to cross into work I had to admit that it was actually snowing. Dammit. As I pulled into work I the storm broke over the mountains for a bit revealing thin snow cover above 8500 feet. Dammit.

I am fully aware of and, in fact, embrace the vagaries of weather here in the mountains of New Mexico. You can break it down to two precipitation seasons, that which there could be snow and that where you should be careful not to get caught in a hailstorm. I would say October to April are firm snow months, and June through August are definite watch for hail months. May and September are transition periods. But June? June is when you start to get hailed on dammit, not snow. And it was definitely snowing this morning. So screw you June, thanks for nothing.


Beetley beetly

Back from t'other coast. The blogging, she shall resume shortlike.