Tuesday, December 28, 2010

on a highway to hell

I'm not very optimistic about many things, but like it when something comes out better than expected.

And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you - ask what you can do for your country.

My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.

Monday, December 27, 2010


Originally uploaded by kelly_macwilliams
12DEC2010 running around the downtown and building snow berms to ride on. Standing on a snow pile in the middle of the street before they haul it away to the suburbs.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

9:ZERO:7 sighting

Stopped into Hollywood Cycles this afternoon to see Smokey and got a quick look at this 9:ZERO:7 before the new owner carted it into the outside world. Rimstrips used here are aluminum foil duct tape with a standard duct tape layer atop; the lightly inflated tubes bubbled the rimstrip outward through the cutout holes, but the strength appears adequate. The rims here are the 80mm wide FlatTop, but they also offer rims in 100mm width for greater float; compare this to the 65mm of the Surly flavour.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Monday morning and it feels like a week since last Friday

Spent a few hours working in the old lab at the U this weekend, good times indeed. This is one of the many former train bridges now relegated for pedestrians and cyclists; I don't get a chance to cross this one in daylight too often anymore:
crossing the Mississippi

Riding home the other night, I caught a glance of the sun going down on Lake Calhoun and had to make a detour. We have lifeguard rescue equipment on a frozen beach, an ice fish house likely filled with some guy drinking alone to forget about his family and problems (but I repeat myself), and a little color, which we don't get too much of in these parts:
sunset on Lake Calhoun

(dark) Tuesday night is going to be the full moon, eclipse, and solstice. I can barely contain myself.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


This is a sweet shot taken from the side of a plow running through the Bryn Mawr neighborhood yesterday. Unfortunately I have to be at work and can't play during the day.

Jeffrey Thompson is the photographer for MPR.

Monday, December 13, 2010

gettin 'er done

Rode downtown yesterday to provide support for the snow berm; things should be awesome by now, and once I bring the chainsaw out for carving purposes, it'll be even more rad.
hosing down the snow berm

All in all an amazing weekend; I came inside to sleep twice, other than that I was outside the whole time. Winter is when some of us tend perk up, it seems.

On another note, I think I found Gene's Roger:
bicycles locked to a pole

Saturday, December 11, 2010

I don't think the hard stuff's gunna come down for some time

Walking around this morning, stopped counting the number of cars stuck, and most of these were on Hennepin Ave, a major MPLS street - don't drive, the shopping can wait.

Saw Tom and Rollin ride by, they were headed to Gigi's for food; I had already eaten. They had ridden about two blocks and were already looking to take a rest.
11DEC2010 - Tom and Rollin

The main streets are sort of in okay condition, but all the side streets are not; don't drive yet.
11DEC2010 - MPLS plow!

This is one of the many cars stuck on Hennepin Ave, a major street in MPLS.
11DEC2010 - don't drive today

11DEC2010 - take the bus

Keeping it real on the Pugsley. Bundle up and ride on, brother.
11DEC2010 - Surly Pugsley

Monday, December 6, 2010

the first weekend of December is behind us


Jeff over at Bikejerks hosted the 3rd session of the Bandit Cross series. The ride was through thick and fresh snow atop a washed out gravel/sand road for about four-miles. The tire choice of the day turned out to be in the 700-by-something-narrow genre. Two riders of the sixteen chose Pugsley's, which turned out to be the wrong choice for the day; unfortunately you have to ride what you brung, and I just got lucky.

Only four miles, but grueling. Advice of the day was don't stop for anything; getting any momentum after a stand still is harder than stopping to rest.

I rode the Steamrolleur with a fixed 42x17 gearing on 35mm Nokians, but was pushing too hard towards the end of the night and would have gladly accepted a 18 or 19 in the rear, but unfortunately missed the NASCAR pit stop (#3 RIP.)
Somebody mentioned this shot has been taken before, but that was after I took it and I'm not going to let it go to waste:
There weren't any hand-ups, but quite a few toss-downs towards the end of the ride:
Three of the sixteen decided it best to ride home, bypassing the LRT. Since the side roads are nothing like they once were around the airport (read non-existent), we ended up taking the looong way around and ended up a bit disoriented in old Fort Snelling. A couple hours and several bonking's later, we finished the ride and began our refueling for the next adventure; the legs were dunn for the day, to say the least.

Chapter 2 (Sunday Sunday Sunday):

Went and fired a few rounds into Zombie Nazis up in god's kuntry:
All in all a great weekend. Legs are still recovering, but am looking forward to the next one.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Thursday, December 2, 2010

a post mid-week pick-me-up

Okay, that last video likely wasn't in the best interest of the internet.

This song will get you going though:

If you are a fan of Mark Twain, check out the Mark Twain Project, where you can even read the recently published Vol 1 of his autobiography on-line. I bought the book at the local dealer, but I'm still a bit old fashioned and prefer the paper format.

Speaking of the guy, I've always been a fan of the letter Mr. Clemens wrote to the president of Western Union back in 1902 (starts on the bottom of page 722 below); the back-handed compliments, elegance, and hilarity is welcomed warmly to this day:

Got the Nokians installed on the steamrolleur, don't think I don't.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Monday, November 22, 2010

winter bicycling, revisited

Read this, it's what I wrote two-years ago regarding riding a bicycle in MPLS winter conditions.

Since then I have acquired a few more wool base-layer items (short- and long-sleeved shirts, all my socks, head beanie, glove liners), which I cannot stress enough for keeping you warm and dry. I also just recently scored a used pair of Lake winter cycling boots; I'll be getting those ready to go in the next few days, but haven't used them yet.


[edit - my friend Rich rides with Mukluks during the winter months and swears by them, as does Andrew in this here comments section. Damn me for not mentioning them and again for not having tried them yet.]

Friday, November 19, 2010

a rant on a few topics but failure is our only option

Hunting season is upon us, I learn after spending 90-minutes wandering through Mills Fleet Farm the other night. In fact the WI stores are opening at 6am today to ensure you can "stock up on extra ammo" before your trip, as the friendly recorded announcement repeatedly reminded us shoppers.

Good luck out there and try not to kill too many of yourselves as you cowardly hide in a tree and shoot at things you think might make good food.

Here's an article from The Atlantic describing techniques on how to circumvent the TSA security process. It's a good thing we have the TSA to protect us, or these weapons carrying soldiers could have have made it back into the country with items such as fingernail clippers and a Gerber multi-tools.

There are other methods of 'security' out there, but like everything else our politicians touch, it's all about the money; expect no change to the status quo.

I take the train when possible. Like the trains and infrastructure themselves, the security is fifty years behind the times, but a sure invitation to stress-free travel.

On the brighter side, Girl Talk released a new album this week and is offering it as a free download. I recommend you get it and listen, you may not be disappointed.

Good luck out there.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

speaking of crashes

Five women sprinters go down during a race at the 16th Asian Games in Guangzhou.

photo: Torsten Blackwood, AFP/Getty Images / November 16, 2010

Brown Steamroller and Red S&S'd Karate Monkey stolen

[update - both bikes recovered and the thieves caught]

Read this then get your used batteries and put them in a pillowcase. Ride around the city and find them.

O.K. everyone heres the deal my red flying monkey and brown steamroller just got stolen out of my garage one hour ago. Here is the brake down for the monkey: red surly 18" S&S coupled karate monkey, black torsion bar with red lettering, Kris holm rims on surly red hubs, and black surly cranks.
The Steamroller: Surly 56 cm brown steamroller the only real standout item on this bike are the wheels that zito gave me the hed Ardennes they say Chris Zito on the in side of the rims. Please tell everyone just stolen from my garage at 11:30 or so.

These are Nate's and he wants them back.

edit - better views of the red monkey on the Surly flickr page:


Saturday, November 13, 2010

state champs again

Epic conditions for the 2010 MN CX state champs today. Rode up to the race, which took over an hour through the fresh and wet snow. We got lucky and got behind a county plow after coming out of Wirth Pkwy, so the riding was mostly smooth from there; the snow still fogged lenses and stung eyes, making for blinding conditions even with the cleared street, however.

Anyway, take a look at the set, or jump to the shots I got of the crashes.

the Men's CAT 1/2 start was intense with four men abreast out of the first turn:
MN Cyclocross Championships - 2010

Men's Olympic slalom bronze medalist, now racing CX, and now a dollar richer:
MN Cyclocross Championships - 2010

there were a few crashes:
MN Cyclocross Championships - 2010

this one got decent air, sorry about the lack of proper framing, you have to give me more warning:
MN Cyclocross Championships - 2010

That's it for now.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

this is how we do things in MPLS

Friday night: go to ooobs for the MPLS presents opening party.

Saturday: go to the MN CX State Champs race. bring dollar bills, beverages, and your heckling voice.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

2010 FAAC

wheelies are always encouraged:
2010 FAAC

as are pajama dives:
2010 FAAC

many attempted the downhill and made it:
2010 FAAC

and many did not:
2010 FAAC

anxiously awaiting the winners from that direction:
2010 FAAC

the winner of the VHS player also took home the tapes from this prize pile:
2010 FAAC

space apes get thirsty:
2010 FAAC

21 highly saturated photos here.

and a few more from Scott.

Until next year...

Friday, October 29, 2010

get outside for once and vote

Tuesday is election day; if you make less than 250k per year, make sure to vote.

Find your polling place here.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Barebones Halloween Extravaganza 2010

If you haven't made it to the Barebones show this year, there is still time: next Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights. This show is beautiful and entertaining, and did I mention free?
Do yourself a whole lot of favor and ride your bikes to the event; like all events, you don't have to fight for a place to park and even more so in the Hidden Falls park, where there are not enough spots anyway.

Fire, robots, giants, bicycle bees; it's got it all.

I imagine that if one were on hallucinogens during the show, they'd come screaming from the audience, running for their lives. Let me know if this occurs for you.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Bob Brown has it going on

Seen last week at the Theo CX race, it's Bob Brown's latest stainless 29'er, which is a thing of beauty and a reckon to behold.

The Latest from Bob Brown

Good thing the tree is in better focus than the frame. Beginner's luck.

Monday, October 11, 2010

2010 Theo Wirth CX

Theo Wirth CX, temperature about 80F, a lot warmer than last year.

The stairs are always fun to watch, but the day's action was in the mud.

Keeping it clean:
2010 Wirth CX

The fastest line was on the left, but the ruts were getting deeper as the day progressed:
the mud was getting rutted and deep

Which led to crashes, some more dramatic than others:
2010 Wirth CX

2010 Wirth CX

But the race goes on:
2010 Wirth CX

Matt knew at this instant things were going to suck:
Matt going down 1/2

But the race goes on:
Matt after his crash

Black Market bib shorts always demand a smile:
2010 Wirth CX

Check out the rest, it's not like you're at work.