3.31.2008

Training Wheelz


















I gots me a bit of work to do on my turning and pivotting skillz. This is some very serious training equipment right here.

Uh-huh.

Last time I had a skate, it was pink and I was like ten. Um, this one's like way cooler and stuff.

And yes, I've already totally stacked it.

Today's lesson, boyz and girlz: Pavement is harder than water.

3.24.2008

Like a Fish Needs a Bicycle

More warm sunshiney roads in the hills.
More spring.
More flowers.
More sneezes.
More is good.

Saturday night, we went to see these guys in Ventura.

Crazy fun punk rock mayhem.

Lots of songs from the early 90s. Even, gasp, some old skool '80-'85 bits. The kids in the pit weren't even born for some of those songs. But they knew every fucking lyric to every fucking song.

So cool.

The boys on stage have a little less hair and a little more grey, these days. Never too old to be a punk.

On the subject of badass, this finish has to be the coolest EVAH. (And Italian commentators so bring the passion.)

When was the last time someone won San Remo off a solo move? I mean, I know Coppi did. But that was sorta different. This one certainly ranks up there with the 1992 edition where Kelly went all crazy like on the Poggio and bridged to Argentin. Che bello finale!

3.21.2008

Pool Nazi

Wednesday, I went down to da poo' for a splashy-splash. It's been pretty much like forEVAH since I last went to the pool for anything more strenuous than a casual dippy dip and a little sunbathing. But I thought maybe I'd swim back and forth. Chase the black line, make sure it was still there.

I put on my little suity and stuffed my hairs into the cap, which always feels like putting a balloon over my head, and tied on my newly assembled goggles. On swim team, all the cool kids get Swedes. (As a side note, it's nice that wiki gives assembly instructions. Because, um, it's like hard and stuff.) The really cool kids mix and match. Blue on the right, green on the left, and whathaveyou. Just avoid the yellow ones. There, now you can't say you never learned anything useful here at the Lint Trap. No yellow swedes. (Unless you have to race in a really really dark indoor poo' Then, you'll be rocking the yellows and desperately trying to ignore the unfortunate effect they have on your surroundings. Better that than wacking into the wall.) Anyway, since I'm not cool, my Swedes are blue on both sides.

I tippy toed across the deck, found myself some swim toys - no, no, pull your mind out of the gutter, toys are the little bouy for the leggies and the little kick board for the kicking - and headed over to a lane. Helpful descriptions labelled each lane: Slow, Medium, Fast, Very Fast, and Kick. Choose your own Adventure. I headed toward the slow lane. Because I was feeling slow and maybe not quite totally committed.

I hopped in the water, and splashed around. This poo' is set up 50 meter. Long course stylie. It has always felt like a very very long way from one end to the other in a 50 meter pool. Short course? Way mo' easier, because there's walls to bounce off. I'm all about bouncing off the walls. 50 meters? Not so many walls. Anywho, I cruised back and forth a little, getting a feel for the joint.

On about my second trip back to the start where all the little lane signs were, I looked up to find the Pool Nazi staring me down. I'm thinking, what di' do? Has some new etiquette rule been enacted since I last jumped in a poo'? I'm just splashing around here, watching the sun make those little patterns on the bottom.

"Do you know you're in the SLOW lane?" she asked, in the tone of voice that seemed to imply that I was in fact very slow indeed.

"Um, yes?"

"Well, you're in the wrong lane. You need to move to the Fast Lane. Or better yet, the Very Fast Lane."

"But, I mean, I haven't been in the pool in years," I argue.

But the Pool Nazi was not swayed. She fixed me with her Pool Nazi Stare.

"You need to move."

"Uh, ok," I mumble.

No Slow lane for you.

So, under her watchful eye, I gathered up my toys and shuffled over to the Fast Lane. No way, no how was I getting in the Very Fast Lane. Shit, I can't remember the last time I felt Very Fast in a pool. I can't even remember Sorta Fast, Maybe a Little Fast, or Not Quite Fast. I'm long retired from Fast.

Fast means pace clocks and qualifying times and more intervals than any human being should ever endure. Fast means stroke drills that make you sink, turn practice that makes you dizzy, breathing exercises that make the world go dim around the edges. Fast means chasing the black line hour after hour, doomed never to catch it. Fast means layering on three ugly swimsuits faded and torn. Fast means really bad hair.

I'm not looking for fast. I just want to splash around in the water, get a little exercise, and maybe work on my tan.

In the end, just as I suspected, the Pool Nazi was wrong. I definitely wasn't Very Fast.

How do I know?

My bikini stayed on.

3.14.2008

Much More Better
















I found it. The creak, I mean. Stupid pedal washers.

Now, my bikey is all quiet, which means I have no excuse but to sally forth and train much. Uhhh....

Speaking of finding things, I found a new road today. I mean, I didn't really find it. It's been there all along, I just never got around to paying it a visit. It went under some trees up to an empty grassy flowery field with a perfect view all the way to the islands. Then, a twisty little quicky descent to finish things off right. Fun times. File under, new favorite.

And yes, I have a bunch of these flower pics, so I'm going to bore you with them repeatedly. The words just look so lonely without a little piccy to keep them company.

Someday, I might write about bikey racing. But I'd have to go to one first. See above about the training part. I hear riding around off the back of a mountain bike race is pretty fun. But, um, I think I'd rather show up at least a leetle mo' fitter. I know, I know, no sense of adventure.

3.10.2008

Gesundheit!

























So I'm trying to find my fitness. It's around here somewhere. Has anyone seen it?

It's always cracks my morale a little to have that not-so-fit feeling. Since having the flu that kept on giving, I've been talking myself into riding my way back toward something resembling form. I mean, we're not talking world beating here or anything, just enough to ride an actual race all the way to the actual finish line. And maybe before sometime next year.

This is always a tricky business, since the less fit I am, the less I want to ride. So I play little games. I pick a few of my favorite roads and string them together. If I ride an hour in that direction, I can go down a fun descent. If I turn up this road and do a little climby climb, I can see a nice view. Come here little girl, I'll give you some candy. Today, I rode along the coast and looked at the water. Tomorrow, I'll climb up somewhere and look at the view. All these little games. No numbers, no graphs, just bikey rides around the 'hood.

Fortunately, spring has decided to show up for a few days. (It's supposed to rain this weekend, so enjoy it while it lasts.) Riding the bikey in the sun is such a joyous thing. The sun is all sunshiney, the hills are green and grassy, and the flowers all flowery and polleny.

Jen's tip of the day: Do not attempt to sneeze and corner simultaneously. It may cause disequilibrium.
(Is this a word? It is now.)

Now, if I could just find and silence the nasty creak my bike seems to have acquired recently, it will all be so perfect.

I do not like a creaky bike
A creaky bike, I do not like

I do not like it in the light
I do not like it in my sight
My creaky bike, it is a blight
Oh, tool of Park please make it right

Dr. Suess, I'm surely not
For now my brain is in a knot
With these rhymes I fought and fought
Perhaps I should erase the lot

I do not like a creaky bike
A creaky bike, I do not like