December 20, 2011

Remember When This Was a Flower Blog?

     I don't, but Guy obviously does. Remember him?
Guy (photo: PandP)
     He's extraordinary at doing what most guys aren't. Like paying attention to detail. Or feeding four kids at once.
Who's hungry? (photo: PandP)
     And decorating hats.
Hat crafting (photo: PandP)
     But don't let his talents fool you. All he really wants to do is make every woman he comes in contact with swoon over him and question their current partner. And with all his spare time in the midst of raising three girls under the age of four, Guy will subtly learn all of your Fave's favorite things.
     Take last week for example. I received a text from my Fave that read, "I got flowers today from some other Guy." With this image attached:
Not just holiday flowers (photo: Fave)
     And of course I raised an eyebrow and muttered the name — Mauricio. Hours later I figured out that he wasn't responsible at all, but rather my other guy, Guy. But what's the big deal? They're just festive cliche holiday flowers. Yes, from an outsider's perspective. But what guy knows, is that when mixed, the colors red and white make pink. He knows this because he's not red/green color blind like me. And he also knows that pink happens to be my Fave's favorite color. She couldn't have been more swooned once I decrypted the symbolism for her. So now what? How could I possibly compete?
Guy's left, mine right (photo: PandP)
     With bigger pink flowers.

December 7, 2011

Two Nights One Pub

    Do you remember my foreign exchange rider from Costa Rica, Mauricio? Well in case you missed him last time, here he is again.
"Hola señoras" (photo: PandP)
     The other night Mauricio invited me out to his favorite pub, and since my Fave was up to her usual Wednesday tricks of frumping around the house in sweats watching crazy women on television, I took him up on the offer. Besides, Mauricio and I usually communicate through text message, how impersonal is that?
Me and Mauricio (photo: PandP)
     It's a good thing I went because I fell in love with the place the second I walked in and heard the familiar, soothing sound of the Misfits rising up from beneath the floorboards. And the best part about this place besides everything, was that it's dog friendly.
Mauricio's Risa de perro (photo:PandP)
     And of course Mauricio has a dog to bring to the pub. Meet Koa, a dog so cool he's all the company two men need at a bar. After we sat down with our beer I was sitting at the table petting Koa and asked Mauricio, "what kind of dog is Koa?"
     He replied, "Koa es Risa de perro, Usted sabe, Koa es un hiena."
     Translation: "Koa is a laughing dog, you know, Koa is a hyena."
      Apparently the lady sitting next to us who definitely had her eye on something tall dark and Latino understood Spanish because she very cautiously moved to the other side of the room. Her loss. We ended up drinking a lot of Belgium beer and heading home in a rather anticlimactic fashion. 

Night two:
     I have a bar bike. I use it for two purposes, I either tow my kid and dog with it or I ride it to the bar. I use it in these instances because it works really well for hauling my family and if it gets stolen, I wouldn't be too upset like I would with some of my other bikes. 
     In this particular instance my bar bike and I were invited by the worst cyclist in the Bay Area and some other friends to watch our local ice skating team.
San Jose's ice skating team the Sharks (photo: PandP)
The Bay Area's worst cyclist (photo: PandP)
     And by cyclist I mean, someone who chooses to ride a bike because they want to and not because they should. 
The Bay Area's worst riding on the sidewalk (photo: PandP)
     And of course he got his pants caught in his chainring resulting in a fresh slit up the back of his leg. 
Pants that were too flared to begin with (photo: PandP)
     And here we are locking up our bikes at my favorite pub.
My bike security Guy, really his name is Guy (photo: PandP)
     And now that I have a pub, I have a pub night, which happens to be tonight. So as I am sitting here blogging along, I just asked my Fave, "what are you doing tonight?"
     She said, "what do you mean? What are you doing tonight?"
     "It's pub night," I replied.
     "You don't have a pub night," she said.

November 26, 2011

Turkey Ride, Head Injury and another Award

     A few days prior to Thursday I mentioned to my Fave that I would be going on my annual Turkey Day Ride on Thanksgiving morning for the first time. I could tell that she was a little dis-satisfied with my decision to leave for a bike ride on a holiday, so I left before she woke up.
     After some discrete coordination with one of my riding partners, I quickly filled my hydration pack with beer and electrolytes and was off. While the weather was a bit chilly the ride turned out to be fantastic. Just look at the smile on the face of my foreign riding partner Mauricio. He's from Costa Rica, and doesn't speak much English so he usually communicates by using universal hand signals.
Peace everyone (photo: PandP)
     And Mauricio and I weren't the only ones who rode, we just happened to be the first one's up the hill. Hours later these people finally arrived.
Slower riders (photo: PandP)
      After eating some turkey, drinking beer and freezing our asses off it was time for a fast, muddy descent back to Thanksgiving, and in my case, back to my Fave and kid who at this point were itching to have me make myself useful while wearing Lycra around the house.
     We surprisingly made it down the mountain without any casualties where I kissed Mauricio goodbye and bolted home. When I arrived, however, my Fave was nowhere to be found, which actually makes it easier to hang my bike in the garage when her car isn't so rudely parked in my bicycle storage facility.
     So like usual I hung up my mountain bike and ...
Me after taking a chainring to the head (photo: PandP)
     As you probably figured out by now — my bikes fell while I was under them, which left my Fave with a bloody date to Thanksgiving dinner. So of course I asked my fave how she felt about my forehead.
My Fave's, you're an idiot look (photo: PandP)
     And ironically, I won another award from a fellow blogger.
I think he meant to call it an Idiot Award, but I'll accept it anyways. (image: JKess)

November 3, 2011

Award-Winning Morning Wood

     As I procrastinated this morning by hitting the snooze button on my iAlarm a good four or five times before slowly erecting myself out of bed next to my slumbering Fave, I had no idea what surprise was awaiting me in the Blogosphere.
The Versatile Blogger Award, awarded to me (Award Credit: Year 31)
     Yes, I am now an award-winning blogger. Thanks to a fellow award-winning blogger, Year 31, who's actually 32, but whatever, I guess she doesn't want to change her blog name every year. Regardless, it's a good blog and you all should check it out because she is also a versatile blogger. Let me spell it out for you:
     As you could imagine, I was trouser-tent happy when I heard the news about my award and I had to tell someone. Except it was 5:40am, and besides my dog, no one was awake. But I had to tell someone. So I told my Fave, and then snapped a photo of her excitement.
My excited Fave (photo: PandP)
     As you can see, she couldn't have been prouder of me. And since she was so happy for me, I wanted to capture the moment again.
Look, she's so stoked (photo:PandP)
     Her words, "who gave you that?"
     Uh, "my peers of course."
     "No they didn't," she said.
     "What does that mean?" She questioned
Something to do (photo:PandP)
     What this notoriety means is that we (Syd and I), get to do whatever creative activities we feel like. You know, like paint random stripes on the walls. This is actually a story of it's own and will be covered at a later time.
     So as a recipient of this award comes responsibility, and since I am terrible at following rules, I am sure I will intentionally screw this part up. But, it's my obligation to award other bloggers with the same award, and provide some factoids about myself.
     When I think of versatile bloggers, one comes to mind, and as much as I don't want to give him an award, I have to. And that's because when he writes about anything except bike racing, his blog rocks. 
     The first Versatile Blogger award goes to:
The idiot who writes A Kestlefest or previously The Curious Case of J. Kess

     The next goes to a blogger who I just discovered — she's stranger than fiction. Red Means Go. If you don't get her, don't worry, it's only because you're normal.
     As for factoids about me — I don't enjoy talking about myself, and would rather write about others.

October 16, 2011

The "Genius" and the iPhone 4s

     If I were a reader of tech blogs, which I am not (I am open to suggestions but if the link isn't amuzing, I am leaving an obscene photo taken with my new iCamera in the comments section.), I would expect to find a post or two about the new iPhone that was released this weekend. With that written, instead of simply searching for reviews of Apple's new pocket rocket, I've decided to buy one and write my own.
     To do this required a few sacrifices on my part. I had to get sick and leave work early on Friday to go stand in line at the Apple store down the street. On top of getting sick, I took a pay cut (unless I use a sick day). Next, the "Genius" (that's what they call people who work at Apple stores) coaxed me into paying the full amount of our phone bill before I was eligible to activate my new phone. Before I could buy my new phone I had to pay a past-due amount of $217 on our bill. Whatever, I would have had to pay it as soon as my phone got shut off anyways. I was all squared away to buy my new phone and the "Genius" told me it's going to cost $650 because I am not eligible for an upgrade. He said the reason for this is because I never pay my bill on time. At this point the "Genius" expected me to leave the store without a new phone.
     That was not an option, and I quickly realized that the "Genius" was trained on protocol. He had no idea that I have been trained for the last ten years by my fave on how to find the loop holes in protocol. So I promptly asked him to cancel my current phone service and sign me up with the competitor's. The "Genius'" next hour was spent at my side working as my secretary, providing me with phone numbers and pens. By the end of the hour we were friends, I had a new phone, and I learned that he was a retired probation officer who now works at Apple for fun. I made my secretary feel comfortable by telling him that I was on probation (I am not really on probation).  
Review starts here:
     Now that I've had the phone for a couple of days I feel that I can objectively review it. The phone I replaced was an older-model iPhone, which I originally purchased because I hate talking on the phone, but love music, being connected, and having quick access to a camera.
     The best thing about the new device is that the camera is pretty bad ass, and will greatly improve the photos on this blog. You're welcome, and you'll be glad to know that the "Intelligent Keyboard" remains as stupid as ever. For example, if you want to ask a friend, "did you like it?" You will actually ask them, "did you lick it?"
     There is one new feature, however, that will make many users very happy. The new iPhone comes equipped with a girlfriend named Siri. The phone was obviously designed by a very lonely engineer who needed one more feature to go along with his "Vibrate Massager" app.
Weird app (Photo: PandP)
And without going to techie on you, from my understanding the new iPhone has two processors so loners will be able to run a multitude of disgusting applications with optimized efficiency.
     How does this pertain to cyclists. It should in keep us safer on the roads because Siri is an order taker, and can send texts by simply asking her to text "blah, blah, fucking blah to whoever." And it also appears that there are more ride-tracking apps available than the last time I visited the App Store.
     So from here on out this blog will have better photos of bikes, flowers and animals, but I would like to leave you with the last photo ever taken with my older-model iCamera. I wanted to make it a good one.
Jak being romantic on my fave's leg. (Photo: PandP)

October 8, 2011

"Why did you shave your calves?"

     I didn't shave my calves, at least not all the way. But there comes a time in the life of cyclist that the question arises. Should I shave my legs and join the "fast" club? And lately I've been riding with some pretty fast guys who are not only faster than me on a bike, but also shave their legs. So, I can't say I haven't thought about it. But, what a commitment that must be. I really don't have time to take a shower with an incorporated leg shave every day.
     One the other hand — if I do decide to lather up and go hairless, there are some really appetizing dynamics that would go along with it. For example, when I see my fave in the shower all wet and slippery, it makes me want to get all wet and slick with her. And imagine how fun it would be to jump in with her and have a shave off. Aside from the toll an event like this would take on my shower drain, there's a lot of upside here.
     As you've read, I've put a lot of thought into this, and am nearing a decision. And what if shaving my legs actually makes me a faster rider? Would I be riding with the front of the peloton? There's only one way to find out. Besides, I ride enough to know when I am getting faster or slower, and what the general cause is. If I drink or eat too much in a particular week I will have to work harder during weekend rides. And if I eat like a hippy all week (granola, berries and no red meat) my legs feel spry, much like how I imagine a jackrabbit feels daily.
     So I have decided to do this:
My left calve with a hairless spot (photo: my fave)
     As you can see, I shaved a stripe out of each of my calves (the right matches) and will test them out tomorrow. What you can't see is that I actually have bald ankles as well, and have for a long time. I wear tight socks that rub it off. My dad has the same hairless ankles — he must wear tight socks too. Needless to say, my legs have never had a more awesome hair pattern.
     This brings me full circle to my fave. I announced this news to her while she was hanging pictures in the hall.
     I asked her, "can you take a picture of my calves?"
     "Why?" She said.
     "Because I shaved them," I replied.
     "Why did you shave your calves?" She asked.
     I said, "to go faster on my bike, but don't worry, I didn't shave my legs entirely."
     It actually went over well, and she even didn't act surprised. She just took the photo I asked and was about to carry on with her picture-hanging project when I caught her off guard by asking her for one more request.
     "Will you lick it?" I asked.
     "Lick what?" She said.
     "The spot," I replied.
     How did she respond?
My fave licking the bald spot (photo: PandP)
     And that's why she's my fave.

October 1, 2011

My Favorite Thing About Weekends

     When I am not out making sure the Bay Area's rat population doesn't go extinct, you can find me strutting around town in one of my many backpacks. But wait, I am a cyclist, shouldn't I wear one of those over-sized purses the hipsters wear? Fair question I guess based on the cool-kid propaganda surrounding these impractical sacks. Messenger bags hold a purpose for a few reasons I suppose — like if you're actually a bike messenger and need to have a huge pouch swing abruptly around your body so you can quickly deliver packages. Or if you're a woman who can't find a purse quite big enough to fit all of your carryables. Or like in my case, where you needed a non-pastel colored diaper bag when your child was born. And even then, I never used it without regretting not using a backpack instead.
     But back to may favorite part about the weekend, which is getting home from work and loading up one of my six backpacks. Sometimes we don't even go anywhere, but if we did, I'd be prepared for anything. Like swimming (a pair of board shorts or two, sunscreen and Chapstick) or a night hike (flashlight, moister-wicking socks and electrolytes) or even the movies (two jackets, one for me and one because my fave will forget hers). And best of all, I can carry all of this with my hands free to wander and roam where ever they like and have the piece of mind of knowing exactly which pocket my harmonica rests in for easy access.
     Jealous yet? My fave obviously isn't — I just took a quick tally of purses suspended in her closet. I counted 16 before it hit me that we probably aren't as compatible as I once thought. Worst of all, not a backpack to be found. However, I did stumble upon my electric guitar case, which also doubles as a backpack and brings my count to 7. As it turns out, I am the jealous one because if I had over 16 backpacks the world would be just one big trail map waiting for my two-wheeled arrival.
     Instead of lashing out I've decided to handle this maturely, and since my fave is way ahead in the purse to backpack ratio, I would have to make a creative comeback. So I took these 13 or so purses:
13 or so purses (PandP)
And stuffed them into one of my favorite packs.
One of my favorite packs filled with 13 or so purses. (PandP)
Side note (in the middle of the page): This is one of my favorite packs because it can expand to hold a high volume of gear. However, it's not my overall favorite because the straps are rough on my skin when I wear it without a shirt. You should always try backpacks on in the store with and without a shirt.
     And as you can see:
Newly discovered closet space. (PandP)
I've evened the score a bit and cleared out some additional closet space. On the downside, one of my favorite backpacks is currently occupied until a better solution comes about.
     And please for the sake of utility, the next time you see hipsters (they travel in herds) with messenger bags, ask them, "what's in the purse hipsters? Diapers?"

September 8, 2011


     The other day I said to my favorite person, "hey, we should get a wild animal." I throw this erroneous idea out every few months which usually results in me going on about how our dog would love the company and how we could build it a cozy fort within our house. My species suggestions are usually of the jungle or safari type like lemurs or meerkats — the other day it was a wolf, because I saw one at Chipotle. I even asked Google to show my fave some images of wolves, which along with my sales pitch earned a small response. It didn't earn me a wolf, but that's okay, because what we didn't know at the time was that we already have some wild animals.
Our once prosperous basil plant (PandP)
    And only a wild animal could be responsible for reversing photosynthesis on my basil plant and reducing it's size by a fifth of what it once was. 
My leafless bamboo plant (PandP)
     And only a wild animal, or a pack of them could be to blame for shearing off the leaves and shoots of my bamboo plant that once made such a soothing sound in the wind.
Two wild animals nesting in my barbecue (PandP)
     Ah ha, it took a while, but I finally have some wild animals. I went out on the balcony the other day to water the plants and thought it was strange that we didn't have any more plants to water. And I thought it was odd that the beach towels hanging out to dry had holes in them that I never noticed before. And when I noticed that our barbecue was really dirty and had palm tree remnants closed in it's lid, I thought — either my fave has been burning our yard waste in the grill, or we have a new pet.
     So I crept up slowly on my barbecue with my iCamera and gently lifted the lid only to discover that we have wild animals that already know how to make a fort of their own. What a disappointment. I always thought the best part of having an animal like this would be to borrow out a wall or a piece of furniture to make them comfortable.
     As you'd imagine, I don't quite know what to do with these creative fort builders. I've considered some of my options and am close to concluding that the best one just give the grill to the rats and move it elsewhere so they don't continue to eliminate my plants and flowers. What do you think is the most humane solution? I'll keep you updated as the drama unfolds.

September 6, 2011

Self Incrimination

     Every time I leave for a road ride my favorite person asks to be careful and reminds me not to ride too close to cars. And I always keep the dangers of this sport Lycra close, however, I also believe that if you ride scared you are much more likely to end up as someone's decorative hood ornament. The other day I was going on our usual weeknight Fro Yo run and she even threw out the "don't call me until you're off the bike," precaution. With that said — here I am riding alongside Highway 17 during a recent group ride using my iCamera to snap a photo of my friend Chad, who come to find out didn't have his rear skewer fastened. 
The shoulder of Highway 17 (PandP)
     This certainly isn't my normal route home from the Santa Cruz Mountains, but it just so happened that I was riding in the back of the peloton most of the day on a ride where there was little-to-no collaborating on which direction to ride. Whoever was leading seemed to just choose whatever ridiculous direction they wanted. Fortunately we were only on the highway for about a quarter mile, and it's a good thing this guy wearing a hydration pack never made his way to the front.
Thirsty guy (PandP)
If he had we probably would have leaned our bikes against some trees and hiked up the nearest deer trail to his swimming hole. This guy is probably my favorite cyclist of all time, especially in the
Fall and Winter when he shows up to ride with his Mag Light taped to the handlebars of his mountain bike.
     It ended up being a great ride and at just a little under 40 miles my legs weren't too damaged for the rest of the weekend. I am glad it went so well, and now I'll have a fond memory of what my second to last bike ride was like because I am pretty sure all of my bikes will be sold within the next few days once my favorite person reads this post. At least I'll have more time to blog.

September 1, 2011

The Great Flower Exchange

     There's something different going on in our house these days, and it smells kind of nice. I mean we're still up the usual strange stuff but lately we've started exchanging flowers on a regular basis. A few weeks ago I brought home some flowers for my favorite person for the first time ever according to her. I don't buy it, and I am pretty sure I've bought her flowers before but to my credit we've only been together for about 10 years so it's not like there have been that many opportunities. And how would I know she even likes flowers — it's not like she has a flower tattoo with my name or anything.
Not real flowers, but a tattoo of them
      Sorry for the shoddy photo, she moves fast when she's bare and being chased by a camera. So then, the next week I bought her even prettier flowers because they went over so well the first time, and what do I come home to yesterday.
Pansies from my two favorite people 
      I know she's never given me flowers before even though she claims she has, but I am no pansy and would certainly remember if I she gave me flowers in the past. And I asked Google — they're not pansies like she said they are, but she obviously thinks I am one. The cute spin to these ridiculous few weeks is that we now have our almost three-year-old wanting to buy flowers at the grocery store, and picking me flowers when we ride our bikes to the park.
Here Dad
And as I finally discovered, the flowers were her idea to begin with. I guess if I want flowers I know who to ask. This brings us to a final flower-giving count for August of Me 2, Sydney 2 and my favorite person 0.
     To move on from the flowers, we recently took a trip across the Pacific to spend some time doing nothing, however, I came across this peculiar bird.
Bird of Paradise
And the closer you look at this Bird of Paradise you come to the realization that this is no bird at all, but rather a flower. Much like this one.
Another flower
     I would like to end with this — San Jose's greatest vegetable garden. No flowers in site but some of the largest zucchinis and cucumbers you'll ever see.
Big George's Big Cucumber Garden

August 26, 2011

Out of the Saddle

I will be out of the saddle for a few more days in an undisclosed location. In the meantime you can find me on Twitter, where I'll do my best to tweet some cycling-related jabber. twitter:@PedalandPetal

August 20, 2011

I wasn't going to blog today or tomorrow

    Remember yesterday how I told you I was receiving text messages of ridicule through my cellular telephone due to my lack of posting? After my post yesterday I thought that all this would come to an end, however, that wasn't the case. And in fact, not only did I receive uncomplimentary text messages today, but I've also come to find out that my favorite blogger called me "old" on his blog.
     Now I am not totally sure this is a direct correlation to me not writing, but I am going to go ahead and believe that's the case. We are actually going out for a beer tonight along with another friend, who said, "that's dumb" to the fact that I have to wait for my favorite person to come home and spell me of kid and dog duty.
     Regardless of how "dumb" or "old" I am not, this is what I'll be plotting tonight. Because the three of us share a common passion for cycling there will most likely be some bartering for bike parts going on. Here's what I am bringing to the table. I have a garage full of bike parts that I am going to try and trade for the pink Bianchi that my sister would ride so unsafely. And as you can see by this picture taken by JKess of his living room, he needs to rid himself of some bike stuff. And even more so since  he still lives with his mom, who by the way just signed on for an episode of "Hoarders" in hopes of correcting her son before it's too late.

JKess' mom's living room (Photo Credit: JKess
(Note: This is the point in this post where I stopped writing because I had to leave to drink beer.)

August 15, 2011

Curiously Reappearing

     It's been over a month since my last post, and while I certainly noticed that I haven't been writing on a regular basis — I didn't expect it to affect the people closest to me as much as it has. This last week in particular has been really tough on them, so much that sending heckling text messages daily seems to be common practice on their part. And so I feel that an explanation for my absence is in order, but I really don't have one. It's kind of like when you're in middle school and you break up with your girlfriend or boyfriend for no apparent reason other than you just feel like it. I was usually on the losing end of that debacle, so I guess I should have had more compassion for my loyal followers who I abruptly left stranded on the side of the trial without an extra tube or inflation device. So as I work through this post perhaps there will be an explanation hidden somewhere, but I doubt it.
Ridiculous excuse for a riding partner
      Here is my last riding partner who invited me on a ride and waited until I showed up to tell me that he can't ride up any hills because of his injured knee. If you're wondering how his injury occurred, I am not really sure, but perhaps there's an explanation on his blog, which I am boycotting until I write a post (I will be reading his blog immediately after I finish this post).
      Quick backtrack — do you remember a while back when someone outbid my sister for a used Bianchi simply to keep more women off of bikes? Well, this is him in the photo above on that particular bike, showing up for the without any hills.
     So as I was going to say in the above paragraph — due to his hatred of women on bikes, he probably put his knee into a woman who was just riding along and of course injured himself in the process.
     And scenarios like this suck the cycle-blogging life out of me, and as a result, we are left without content on the blog. And instead of blogging when I get home from a ride or a flower picking session I end up doing this.
View from my lap (Photo: PedalandPetal)
     If you look closely there is season two of 90210 illuminating our television, while I lay in bed with a six-pound Maltese on my lap. How could it get any better, but wait it does because I don't wear clothes when I do this.

July 13, 2011

Funny Things Happen When You Ride a Bike

     We live near a little downtown area filled with shops and restaurants that generally seems to be pretty safe. We often walk or ride our bikes here especially in the summer because who the hell wants to be in a car anyways? Well, last night my favorite person requested that I embark on a quest to satisfy her sweet tooth. She sent me to the local fro-yo shop and wanted a timely retreat. So I said okay and went to grab my bike because I knew it would get me there and back quicker than my SUV. She did not agree, and threw me the keys to the car and said, "take mine."
     Now I certainly didn't put up much of a fight, but neither would you if you were standing in the way of lion and her kill. This woman could eat frozen yogurt every day, the same flavor, for the rest of her life. I try to make sense out of it by relating it to my addiction to coffee.
     So I took the car and made my first pass by the yogurt shop and of course there wasn't anywhere to park. I turned around and tried the other side of the street and you guessed it, no fucking spots. And if it wasn't for the Fro-Yo Queen, I would have driven home and parked the car and left on my bike. However, I did the thing that would make her keep a normal perception of me in her head (who am I kidding, that was gone a long time ago). I ended up parking a few blocks away and walking to the shop. I wasn't in a mood and I actually found it amusing, plus I knew she would send me back the next day which would give me an excuse to redeem myself to myself.
(My bike, the following day on a yogurt run) Photo: PedalandPetal
      Not only did I redeem myself by riding my bike to the yogurt shop today, but I did it in less than have of the total time it took me drive, park and walk to the same shop yesterday. And probably the best thing was returning to my bike only to find that the kind people at my local yogurt shop tied balloons to my bike.

July 12, 2011

How do you tote you kids?

     I found this on one of my favorite blogs — Bike Snob NYC. He is a brilliant and hilarious writer, I thought you'd enjoy it.
Where do you think they're going?

Video says it all

July 10, 2011

Tour de Flower

     Being that this is supposed to be a bike blog and we are in the middle of the Tour de France, I think it's only fitting that I write about my gardenia plant that so pleasantly graces our front door with its spring-like aroma.
Jak enjoying my aroma-therapeutic gardenia plant.
Photo Credit: PedalandPetal (shot with an old Sony Cybershot) 
     Now before you hang up on me and think to yourself, this guy must be some kind of nursery-dwelling hippy that has no intention of talking about bikes, please bare with me for a moment because I actually do have a cycling related point. But first you'll need to click on this link to a video of the world's best rider, Alberto Contador, who tosses his bike to the ground after a crash
     Did you watch it? I don't really know what my point is, however, the last time I crashed my bike, my initial reaction was not to throw my bike on the ground and inflict further damage upon it. This is because I like bicycles, especially my own, and I have the ability to think critically and foreshadow a few hours ahead of what my needs may be. The last time I crashed I was by myself in the middle of Soquel Demonstration Forest on one of my favorite local trails. My initial reaction was to ask myself, who are you? After answering successfully I immediately apologized to my bike and helped it off of the ground and checked it for injuries. It happened to be fine, but I knew if it wasn't, I would have had a long walk out of the forest. 
     Contador obviously has a different thought process than I do, and I think it went something like this. 
     Being Alberto Contador (English translation): "You piece of garbage Specialized, there is nothing special about you. I am Spain's gift to cycling, that is why I ride an American bike, don't you know that the Spanish discovered America. Fuck that hurt, there is Lycra ground into my Spanish skin. I am the most interesting man in the world. You are just my Niña, as far as I am concerned, you have sunk, therefore deckhand, I demand my Pinta."
     Yeah, he's a strange bird, however, if he were an animal he would be an anteater (we went to the zoo today — they're weird). But to tie this back to my gardenia plant that smells like you wish you did after a ride. If Contador looked around, took a few deep breaths, hopefully getting a whiff of a French gardenia — his head would've been in a much happier place. And perhaps he would have just french kissed his mechanic for immediately handing him a carbon fiber copy of the bike he just crashed.

July 4, 2011

This is not a Flower Blog

     Now that my readership has increased by over 33 percent since my mom became my third follower, I want to make one thing very clear — this is not a flower blog.
Pink, purple or blue cone-shaped flower.
Photo Credit: G. Richard Shaw
     And while I enjoy the added essence that most flowers provide, I intend to write the majority of my posts about cycling. Now that we're clear, if you have a bicycle photo that you would like to submit to me via the comments section, I would be happy to post it on this site with a photo credit to your name. As you can see by the photo above, I've only been receiving submissions for flowers. If by chance you do send me a flower, the caption will most likely be described with the wrong colors unless you write it yourself because my third follower gifted me with genes that don't allow me to visualize all of the correct colors. 

July 1, 2011

Look-a-like Contest

     We're taking a family vacation this weekend to Lake Tahoe with my wife's in-laws for an epic Fourth of July weekend. And with four adults trapped in a cabin with four rowdies under the age of four, we are definitely out numbered. The good news is that three of the kids aren't mine.
     In an effort to put an effective car-packing plan together my favorite person shipped our dog off to spend the night at a friends house, where he'll be staying all weekend. The reason for this is so that we don't have to drop him off in the morning on the way out of town, but more importantly because when he's around everyone's efficiency level drops like 35 percent. At six-and-a-half pounds I know this sounds ridiculous, however, he just has a way of making himself the epicenter of chaos as you can see in this photo.
     Regardless of his mischievous demeanor, I've missed his presence all night. So even with him gone tonight I am still operating at a low state of efficiency. My cadence is certainly down and I am nearing a bonk. Where I should be packing up for the weekend I am instead sitting here having a beer and writing a post about him. In an attempt to re-capture his image so I can get on with my night, I searched the house for some kind of resemblance to Jak. These are what I came up with:

While they are stunning, the same color and certainly smell better — there's nothing like the real thing.