Friday, February 22, 2008

A Pitiless Beauty

Morning weigh-in: 167#, 7.5% BF
"The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction." -- Rachel Carson
Say what you will, I love snow. La belle dame sans merci, white goddess... full moon (hunger moon, popping trees moon) last night, lunar eclipse the night before. Spring is coming; today is its fuel.
Which Brew last night, and it was a full house; looks like everyone got that same email.  At one point I looked over, and sitting next to me were Margarita, Perry & a friend of his, and Michele -- all teachers, and all anticipating a three day weekend. (Looks like their plan came together.) I hit Porters on the way home, but skipped out pretty quick, stayed just long enough to start my next mug. Nice conversation with off-duty waitress Courtney, who used to live in Boulder, and had some interesting if not-very-positive observations about Colorado and its residents.
Living Large: I made it in to work, but it's pretty quiet here today. Big breakfast (I was starving), then there was a meeting that got canceled but they couldn't cancel the lunch in time, so everyone in the department who made it in today got a free sandwich. It's also our Health Awareness Program's weekly "Free Fruit Friday," so I just hit the cafeteria for my free fruit -- today it was dried dates, which remind me of dried cicadas but I ate them anyway.
One Last One From Rachel Carson: "We stand now where two roads diverge. But unlike the roads in Robert Frost's familiar poem, they are not equally fair. The road we have long been traveling is deceptively easy, a smooth superhighway on which we progress with great speed, but at its end lies disaster. The other fork of the road — the one less traveled by— offers our last, our only chance to reach a destination that assures the preservation of the earth."

Thursday, February 21, 2008


Oops, no morning weigh-in! It probably would not have been good though, since I had a big, big dinner.
Lonely Little Onion In A Petunia Patch: Got in a spinning class right after work yesterday, down at Everybody's. I haven't taken a spin class in maybe two years but it was like I'd never missed a beat: the instructor was Kim H, and while the music was contemporary the workout was very familiar, very "Kim." One thing is different though, I don't think spinning might be much of a "guy thing" anymore, as I was the only dude in the class.
One other difference was how much stronger I felt, and how much easier the class was than it used to be. Time usually used to drag in there, and my ass would be dragging too by the end, but last night things really seemed to breeze right along. (Running on the treadmill the other day, I noticed a similar thing: I ran just over a mile, and cruised it at a speed of 8.5 mph, two mph higher than my usual "cruising speed," and one mph faster than what's usually a hard pace. It may just be a mini-peak, but I think my cardio fitness may be coming along a little better than I realized.)
Point Of Parliamentary Procedure: After that was the Chain Gang meeting, at D&L's house -- that's where I ate too much. Fatoush and other middle eastern salads, chicken kabobs in pitas, gummi worms for dessert, and of course beer... The meeting itself was a bit spirited; I think most people went there expecting -- and planning to participate in -- a confrontation. (Two meetings ago we proposed a membership requirement, that members had to participate in one ride or event, one meeting, and one trailwork session every year to remain a member. That seemed to have struck a nerve with a lot of members, and at the January meeting it passed -- unanimously, with one abstention -- over the strong objection of one member. That member recently stated his intention to get the new rule overturned at last night's meeting.) Basically the new rule still stands, no one's opinion really changed on either side, but there definitely was a lot of back and forth, a lot of clearing of the air, maybe a few bruised egos... We're all friends, and hopefully we all still are, but that doesn't mean we'll always agree -- and since this is our passion, our disagreements will also tend to be passionate.
It's Official:  Got home, checked my mail, and found a message from Which Brew owner Kelly Jo. There have been rumors, but this made it official: their landlord did not renew the lease, so Which Brew will have to relocate -- and they do not yet have any prospective new locations. I expect at least a temporary closure, probably for the summer if not forever. That totally sucks.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Sudden Drought

Morning weigh-in: 166.5#, 7.5% BF (wha?)
Not much to say: tasty "Bavarian pork chops" for dinner last night, then the gym, then groceries; tonight is a spinning class followed by the Chain Gang meeting at D&L's. Really just stopping in here to record the weights, but I'll probably have more to say tonight or tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Wall Of Lies Between You And Horror

Morning weigh-in: 168#, 10% BF
"Weissman's cruelty was no less resourceful than Pökler's own engineering skill, the gift of Daedalus that allowed him to put as much labyrinth as required between himself and the inconveniences of caring. They had sold him convenience, so much of it, all on credit, and now They were collecting." -- Thomas Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow
"I ate all the rest, and now I gotta eat you." -- Monster Magnet, "Space Lord"
Gravity's Rainbow was supposed to be immoral, amoral, sprawling and pointless or whatever, but that's not true: it has a point and a moral, and that passage is the exact moral center of the book. I thought about that quote yesterday, both quotes actually, while watching that Humane Society video, and also when I saw this story about WikiLeaks being shut down.
Anyway, beans and salad for dinner last night after yoga, must have been some heavy beans though. Tonight is the gym, and I've got a crock pot full of pork chops & sauerkraut cooking away for afterward. By the way, I've got a call in to the travel agent, tour promoter or whatever, the Tuscany trip dates are in November, I've got the time available and I have decided to go.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Flickr Find: A Long And Winding Road

Totarder 3
Originally uploaded by tanera.
I don't know where this is -- Scotland? -- but I would love to throw myself down that sucker on the road bike. Beautiful photo, awesome scenery.

Groundhog Day!

Morning weigh-in: 166.5#, 10.5% BF (been there, done that)
Does She Still Hang On The Western Wall? I may be going to Italy this Fall, a group trip to Florence/Tuscany: Porter's Pub usually does a trip or two every year to Europe, and they were talking it up the last few days. (So far it's just word of mouth, and the trip is almost booked up.) I've never been on any of their trips but this one looks too good to pass up. I better get my act together, I'll need to update my passport etc, make the commitment for real before the trip fills up, maybe learn a little Italian or something. Tuscany is supposed to be awesome, and Rome is only three hours away by train but the big selling point for me will be Florence and the Uffizzi, where among other things I hope to be able to see a certain painting... Vhiesshu, Venezuela, Vesuvius, Venus on the Half Shell... I'll also be looking into some bicycling day tours.
Chew On This: A friend sent me this video and petition about the recent beef recall. You should go there and sign the petition, but if you watch the video be ready to be outraged.
Tonight is the gym, tomorrow may be yoga. Or vice versa.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Your Weekend Wrap-Up

Oh, You're Still Dreaming of Orgone? Friday night was the traditional ride with Larry. Getting ready in front of his house, I saw a car with the license "ORGANON" parked on the street. That's some fine crazy you got there... The ride itself was pretty cool, a little tougher than last week (snow, ice) but still OK. Friday night was Which Brew, of course. Nick's band played: really good, and the singer was very Tom Waits.

Saturday was back to my selfish day: yoga, gym, errands, plus an oil change where they spilled a bit of oil I guess on the engine, so my car right now smells like it's burning oil. (Thanks guys.) Night time was back to WB, for the anti-Valentine's party. I hear they rocked till the wee hours, but I was home relatively early.

New Boots and Panties: Rode today with Joe G, who was down visiting from his new home in the Poconos. Pretty good ride. I got out a bit beforehand, rode around and hit some local bike stores, and also bought new gloves and booties, which I used on the ride.

Laundry tonight, and Porters for dinner while it dried -- saw Larry & Kelly-Jo, and earned my 2nd mug there tonight. My day is now done, see you tomorrow, when I will probably not go skiing. Stupid weather...