Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Notice the facial expressions

Here's how you can tell who's in shape and who isn't:

Lance, Checu, and Eki look comfortable while those 2 guys in the back look like they're dying. What is an easy spin for some is a max effort for others. I'm sure none of us would even be in this picture; we'd be on down the hill, on the side of the road pretty much dead...

Boy I hope this marketing moves here!!!

This is happening in Seattle. I guess those depressed water logged people need something to "lift" their "spirits."

Monday, January 29, 2007

East for Easton

Today in the World Herald there was a tinny blurb on the front page of the Business section about how Easton-Bell Sports Inc. will be sending its manufacturing operations from southern California to China. It's corporate offices however will remain in Los Angeles.
Now if my brain serves me correctly which it seldom does, I want to say our Lemond frames are made of Easton aluminum tubing. I couldn't find any mention of Easton on Lemond's website, so maybe somebody could clearify that for me.
In any case, many teams and and company's use or spec Easton's tubing and components. Thus another prime American made cycling product will now be adorned with "made in China" stickers.
In other news, US exports to China increased 33% in 2006 with US exports increasing in general as well. China now ranks as our third largest export market behind Canada and Mexico. Indeed, figures now show exports growing almost 3 times the rate of imports.

Worst tortilla crisis of modern history.

The Washington Post reported on Saturday significant rising of global corn prices due to increases of ethanol fuel production has tripled or quadrupled corn tortilla prices.
Most Mexicans get over 40% of their protein from corn tortillas.
The typical family of four consumes around 2.2 pounds of tortillas per day.
They are used as table ware, are nutrient rich, and aid digestion.
Many of the poor are without their food staple now, unable to afford the higher prices.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

This ones for you Petar..

Here's the original vid:

Then here's the YTMND link.

Here's also the searched link on YTMND

Now that was a Thursday night ride!!

So I got off work at 3:30, officially clipped into the pedals at 3:45. I rode South for a good hour and a half then started making my way back toward High Gear. Along the way I was tempted to break out the camera phone to take a pic of this awesome view. On the Bellevue loop right at Hayworth park, there's those huge fields. Well since the snow had been undisturbed and melted a little, it looked like a sea of white glass in the sunset. It was amazing.

I got to High Gear right at 6pm and started shedding layers. Hopped on the trainer by about 6:15 and zoned out for an hour-forty five. Rode alongside Shim, Pool, Jarrett, and the man, Frank. We watched the 13th(?) stage of Tour day France '05. It was nice to watch the vid, but man being on the trainer is torture.

So 2:15 outdoors before the trainer ride, 1:45 on the trainer, then another 25 min. on the way home outside. 4.5 hours works for me. Now if I can just do that at least once a week....

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Holy Foggy Glasses, Batman!!!

So I look outside my window this morning to see if there really was fog like the interweb said. Sure looked clear to me. I was sleepy anyway so I forgot to put on my cycling glasses and just had my regular einsteins on. Well after I rode down the first hill, I found this "fog" they were talking about. And what happens to fog when it hits a solid object at 23 degrees class?? That's right, instant frostiness on the glasses rendering them useless. I normally would have ridden on Center and Saddle Creek to get to work which are unusually un-busy at 6am. However, since I was riding without vision correction and was afraid of being mowed over by a car that couldn't see me until it was too late, I rode the trail over to Aksarben, thru Elmwood park to Leavenworth street, and on into work. It felt kinda nice having the breeze directly on my otherwise covered eyeballs. That is, until a nice chunk o' salt kicked up from my front tire decided to ruin that fun. So that was an experience. Frozen fog is not my friend...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

My near digit death experience.

I made 2 mistakes on my ride yesterday after work: 1 - forgetting that 24 degrees (15 degrees windchill) is really effin cold. 2 - I though by wearing 2 pairs of socks, and duct taping the vents in my mtb shoes, my toes would be fine without any other booties or chemical toe warmers. Wrong, wrong wrong wrong....

So I rode from work, downtown, South to Bellevue blvd, into old town Bellevue, out 370 to 25th, onto the trail to home. Well at about halfway on Bellevue blvd, or 45 minutes into my 2 hour death march, my toes are just starting to go numb. By the time I'm in old town bellevue, 1:10 or so, my toes are past numb into painfull throbbing. So I focus on just lifting my feet instead of pushing down since that helps sometimes. This time, not so much. When I got to the trail, the little entry way off of 25th was pretty snowy still so I hiked over it. I remebered reading somewhere that a cure for frozen toes was to get off and walk for a while. So I walked for a good five minutes. Once i got back on the bike, I could feel some circulation getting back to my toes. This, unfortunately didn't last long. I was also thirsty, but both my bottles were frozen so I was out of luck there. So for the rest of the ride I just sort of zone out and just tried to think about getting home to a nice hot shower. By the time I got home it felt like I had 2 blocks of ice attached to my ankles that were stuffed in shoes. I was underdressed a little for the temps so my arms and hands had very little functionality. Openning and closing my garage door along with using my keys was difficult to do with no dexterity. I could only use my hands as if I had leather mittens on. So anyway, I got my shoes off and noticed some bad swelling in my toes. And now the worrying starts. I got into the shower and couldn't really tell if the water was warm or cold since I had that pins and needles situation going on. After showering down, I made a bath and fell asleep in the nice warm water for a good half hour. After I got out, I couldn't move my toes on my right foot. The big toe was swollen really bad, and didn't have a lot of feeling. I was sure that pretty soon the skin would start going black and brown indicating that my toes were dead. But luckily, I still got all 10. And that's all I gotta say bout that....