29 June, 2008

2nd Annual Throw Down @ the Hoe down and the Cross Country Super Loop Race kids...

l-r: nicole, tanya, ellie, hogan, hez-chilly, chandler (notice atv in background!)

Throw down
last night was technically the 2nd annual richmond hillbillies throw down at the hoe-down (any reason to hangout, eat, start a bonfire, laugh, and soak up good company). we had about 25 people-our dearest friends and family that weren't on summer vacation-attend. yours truly was the yoda master of the griller making vegetarian fare for all. for starters the homey trinity's family attended (kev and hez-chilly). as a good hillbilly, i busted out our atv and kev, billy, and pablo drove their kids around our property. their kids loved it because of the indescribable fun factor riding down a dirt road with no cushion of metal protecting you with the surrounding scenery flying past you and the noisy two-cycle engine underneath your family jewels internally combusting away. here's kev and conner below...

...kenny brought his homebrews (he's an organic chemist by trade) and it was astronomically yummy. his creations were a kölsch and a russian imperial stout. he brought the tanks and the tap too. the kölsch was too awesome. it's like drinking the essence of (liquid) summer. the alcohol content coupled with the meal replacement, chewy yet smoovy-smooth texture of the stout was a wicked one-two punch.
here's my co-teacher linda and her husband bill...

...once all our friends arrived i put my cell phone away (for the giving of directions) because truly everybody whom i consider close had arrived. it was nice to see my friend jay in such good spirits w/ all the junk going on recently in his life. he's my texas bud whom i've known for a couple of decades and when we get together we giggle uncontrollably like the chief of police attempting to deliver inspector clouseau's eulogy at his wake in those wonderful peter sellers movies. as always it's always a treat hanging out with my friends who happen to also be my teammates. kenny and his lovely wife tracey and chris' new g-friend: kendra (part deux)who's coo' like dat. they seem to be in the honeymoon phase of the relationship nauseating us (especially tracey and me) with their public displays of affection. melissa's uncle and niece, mom and dad and bro, and our first neighbors (and even super closer friends!) ever in colorado-pablo and allison and their kids attended too...
allison and julia

...we started the bonfire early and libations because it was chillier than normal. oh man, stupid hour came early. it all comes down to family, friends, food, fermentation, and fahrradrennen (i know, but i had to stick with the "f" alliteration). kenny and i were racing tomorrow-hence the fahradrennen (it hadn't happened yet but i write after the fact), but we weren't too worried about it.
Cross country super loop
it's been a while since my complicitor, teammate, and homey-g kenny and i started the day dedicated to racing. he's the singlespeeder from hell, a walking encyclopedia on things scientific and car-related, a barrista non-pareil, and generally a quality hominid who i call a friend. we carpooled in (his car) the front range's fastest volvo 740 wagon to winterpark. read about irene and her capabilities in his blog. anyhoo we didn't seem too concerned about our condition to race after the previous evening's festivities. we registered and paid, might as well do it and represent the purple and orange. again, we don't have time to preride the course. kenny takes off before me in his expert class whereas my sport class takes off 20 minutes later. when we go, my legs aren't as ill as two weeks prior. i immediately go into race pace and line up top twenty. i need to mentally regain focus because of this furious pace the leaders force once the official counts our field of 52 down from 10 seconds. my legs feel great but i'm stressing because my heart rate needs to synched with my "fresh" feeling legs. i wait it out (with heart beating in my throat) and i'm now a competitor. the pace is so fast it goes into single track after a steep little climb with no one passing and the order remains unchanged. so after a long while of playing follow the leader through gnarly, technical climbs and descents we hit an inordinately long patch of fire road on this ridge and the wind's blowing pretty hard. i hook up with a group of four and some dude on a 29er's taking these mondo long hard pulls up front. if i don't stick with this paceline, i'm a gonner fighting these headwinds solo. so we let him pull and nobody goes around him. me and this other guy have been trading pulls before we hooked up with this group and my companion's not feeling very friendly. when he attacks the guy leading (we're primarily roadies and not very nice apparently) he gives me the hand signal (pointing left behind his back) that we bust a move on the left hand side of the fire road quick-like. he jumps and i follow his wheel and he's cranking this pace that gets me in the red zone. i mentally relax to force myself to draft. he's going so hard that this little riser gets me spit off the back and i yell thanking him for the the pull while i go backwards. he waves and continues to drop us. i'm in no mans zone now-in-between packs. so i see a group of three i accelerate and slide tail gunner in on them. again some strong yahoo's tearing it up up front with no concern for taking pulls so we let him. i get my second wind and trade pulls for a while. i'm third in line so when the second guy lets a gap form i go around him and he says something like i cut him off. normally i would say something akin to commence to attenuate your vocalization please (i.e. shut the f&%# up jackass), but i'm a believer in karma so i hold my tongue hoping to put the ever-loving smack down on him during one of the long climbs to put some distance between me and his bad attitude. right before the singletrack he cleverly accelerates and gets in front of me for the hole shot. daz cool, i'll wait it out and pass him on the climb. he's rocketing now and gets daylight between us and i'm bummed while he continues to pull away on the technical downhill (he has a dual boinger, i have a hardtail). finally a steep, technical uphill and i get in spin mode and start to pass riders. i see dipshizzle ahead of me and i drop it a gear and pass him on a tight, high-side of a tree root (to mentally goof with him). he glues up but this climb gets steeper and i'm dropping gears and can maintain this cadence. sho' nuff he pops and one of my old paceline companions catches me and drafts me up this long climb. i'm starting to get distressed because i don't know when this torture test's going to end. my paceline companion says there's a deep creek crossing ahead and he's likely to portage his bike over it. i see it coming because that's where the spectators congregate to watch the racers endo into the deep, cold creek. we all gun it (it's almost knee-high!) and it's like the red sea parting (our group all made it). 'cept it's not god doing it, it's our 2.1 tires rotating like a buzzsaw that channels the water sideways. unlike last race i'm keeping it in my biggest gear possible still having the energy to turn her over. finally i see the one mile to go sign and everybody else who sees it gets antsy and kicks the intensity up a notch. i get passed on a climb and i say that's it, if you're going to pass me it's not because i'm slowing down. on this wide part of the descent some dude goes for the pass on the inside apex of this wide but technical switchback and he biffs it. i hear the rider behind me ask if he's okay so i keep my rpms high and don't stop. i catch another pack and the last guy in that pack goes for a drink from his cage. as soon as he gets the drink in his mouth he hits a tree root, gets bucked off his bike, and flies down an embankment. he's fine though because i see him scrambling up when i go past his bike on the trail. i catch his pack and we're flying. this last part kenny and i preroad before we staged and i knew there was this babyhead rock and conveniently located ahead of it was a large tree root. the gap was just the right width for a front tire to drop in and endo if you didn't carry enough speed. sho' nuff the guy behind me biffs it too. it sounds like somebody dropping a cinder block from head height on a loamy, forest floor. it (him crashing) made a deep, thuddy thunk! last turn then it's a drag race on the fire road. i go for my sprint and pass one of my paceline mates and the remaining two are closing in. my legs start to cramp when i'm out of the saddle kicking so my high end speed's come and gone and they take me at the line. it was awesome though. at the end we all shake hands and thank each other for keeping the pace high making it worthy enough to be called a cross country race. i finish 18th out of 53. kenny finishes 8 minutes slower than me on his singlespeed. that's why he races expert. here's his results. the leader in his class had the fastest time of the day-including the pros. on the way home we're debriefing about what a great race it was today and reviewing his latest concert show of the best prog rock band on the face of the earth: rush.
at home i'm drinking this. notice the icon, it's a bicycle. a red one nonetheless. same color as my beloved yeti hardtail.

sweet melissa's drinking this (notice background)...

and again we're enjoying each other as well as another picture postcard day here in colorado about to eat dinner with the family on the deck. i'll leave you with this: ruby licking her lips knowing dinner's 'round the corner with mason holding her. if you notice i let mason dress himself for nighty-night. who am i say you don't match?

ahhh the tan line continues. as my friend says wear it like a status symbol (notice the elbow scars from previous road rash).

20 June, 2008

Less Gas; More A$$ and EAT MORE VITAMINS!

yeah. this is what green, body conscious boulderites do as a form of peaceful message conveyance. oh, and i rode with tyler hamilton thursday (yesterday). he's not as skinny as his TdF days and he still goes like hell...

here's jonathon baker (third in the paceline) representing my purple and orange aka vitamin cottage (picture courtesy of PEZ CYCLING NEWS) at Tour de Nez!

here's dirk friel bustin' a move (PEZ CYCLING NEWS)

here's the fruits of mr. baker's efforts: 2nd in the 3rd stage (a crit, PEZ CYCLING NEWS).


14 June, 2008

I'm A Wee Bit Bummed (w/new pics-tanks Kenny!)

here i am, temporarily lactic acid-free. (kenny's gallery)

the awards ceremony under the auspices of winterpark ski resort
well. did the inaugural winterpark hillclimb today with my colleague and friend billy, kev (which makes up the homey trinity if you count yours truly), billy's son hogan, kenny the mad single-speeder, and billy's friend jon.
here they are, guess who's who (kenny not pictured)

it was jon (red/black long sleeve jersey) and kevin's (crew cut, blue jersey) first time to do a mountain bike race and they rocked it! doing it under an hour is great for a first timer. me, on the other hand, SUCKED! i was three minutes slower this year than last and i came into this thing much more fit than last year. hmmmm. what can i take away from this? one: i should'na cycled the day before with a lot of intensity-climbing intensity nonetheless. two: what billy said ride the course. i think i was over-confident with my mental topography of the course. when the countdown to go went, my legs were so pre-loaded from friday's jaunt that i immediately went into my lactate threshold. had a great start but faded rather quickly. lungs felt great but the legs were hot and heavy. midway through though i passed a butt-load of people but it wasn't enough for a top ten. cadence was synced perfectly with the rhythm of my breathing 'round midway point. don't know what i would've done better except that the lactic acid came early and stayed. i tried to actively rest on the flats but that just made me want to drop it two gears and chase more rabbits. here's the profile of the course. it rose 2,142 feet in 5.3 (agonizing) miles. start elevation: 9075 feet (2766 meters); end elevation: 11,217 (3419m). yikes!
here's the beginning of the climb. the snow's kind of surreal, no (kenny's gallery)?

for the sake of comparison here's billy's time last year: he was 6th out of 14 with a respectable time of 55'39. this year it's 58'08; 8th out of 19. if you do ratio and proportions, it's no change because of the quality of people entering and billy's fitness being on par with his group (even though both of us definitely felt we were more fit this year than last).
the hoge's time last year 1hour 29'. last place (he was eleven last year). this year he wins! top banana! top one percentile. shaves 25' off his time!
check out proud pappa and the hoge with medal around neck

here's yours truly (aka lame-o). last year 6th out of 29. 45'03. i'm saying to myself, it's reasonable to shave-off time this year. nope! here's today's results: 26th out of 63 (more people this year), 3'13 slower than last (coincidentally it's about the same gap as billy's). proportionally i would've gotten 13th with the same fitness. i dropped fitness and the 34 people that entered this year had skill. if i rode my same time last year, i woulda got 15th. mmmmm, sounds like somebody's rationalizing...in fact, my groups' winning time would've gotten them a top 12 finish in the experts. ladies and gentlemen, that's what the cycling world calls a sandbagger. ite now. in addition to hogan winning, here's two more bright spots today. kevin's time: 59'35, which was a smidge (8.2s) quicker than jon's time. this earned them a 16th and 17th place(s) respectively.
kenny the mad single speeder's time was 48'24!
this is a rare moment-him standing still...(kenny's gallery)

what he's saying to the guy on his right is don't let this smile on my face fool you, once i start pedaling i will rip-off your legs to beat your mellon into an unrecognizable slab of sinewy goo, girly-man.
he was only seconds slower than me and he did it on a hardtail! the boy might be possessed. i'm going to throw some holy water on him and check to see if it sizzles at the places where it touched his skin. he finished 14th out of 18. incidentally, kenny senior was in town visiting from california and it was nice to see his pops again. if y'all don't know singlespeed mentality, they're a different breed folks and kenny's on a singlespeed mission this season. if we compare this to our latest cycling bud alec: he busted 1h1' last year. alec's a talented cyclist but is currently taking a brief sabbatical from cycling to pursue a career in full-contact origami and singing the national anthem at illegal dog fights (naw, he's in california). even though i am disappointed in myself, i still had a sunburnt smile on my noggin' at the end of the day (billy too more than likely...) for dinner, we're having haystack goat cheese from longmont...

on a crispity-crunchity ciabatta loaf...

rinsed down with a shirah/petite shiraz/cab blend (red truck-excellent table wine).

the weather today's as magical as yesterday's. we're going to sit on our deck and view some more of this.

truly kids, this is what quality living's all about (my version at least). family, food, friends, and shitting on your neighbor during a bike race all in a scenic, mountain setting? dat's right kids. pictured below are the artifacts of good living: food, wine (for two-my lovely wife and me), kids (the cup o'milk), a good book (east of eden, by steinbeck-billy's recommendation), cycling (the camelback), and a picnic table (outdoors).

i can't complain about my lameness too much i guess. at least i have this oh so groovy watch tan to show-off while i'm holding some vino..

13 June, 2008

Heaven on earth


right now

today was the reason why we moved up here. the temperature was like goldilocks: not too hot, nor too cold, just right. the top number's inside; the bottom's out.

this is the eve of the inaugural winterpark series and here i am imbibing and eating pizza.
i do believe i'm typing under the influence. here's the guilty party: it's a nice milk stout created by left hand brewery (from here in colorado), and it's creamy while not heavy, with a just a hint of an oaky finish-YUM!!!!

not necessarily the greatest pre-race meal but who cares? i race (if you can call it that), but that doesn't limit me to what i eat. i have no aspirations to become a cat two or an expert mountain biker because i have a family that's pretty righteous coupled with other worthwhile distractions, so, if that's the trade-off i'll take it. it's a celebratory day today. my kids just finished soccer camp punctuated by them playing two hard games on astroturf. astroturf is like a heat sink so they were hammered by the heat and their efforts. we bought pizza for dinner. they fell asleep on the way to the pizza joint so we drove around in our 'hood admiring the weather and i showed melissa the path i cycled today to loosen up my pistons before the hillclimb tomorrow. summertime at 8000' in colorado is indescribably gorgeous. there wasn't a cloud in the sky and my cycling earlier had little car encounters. it was one of those days when the planets were aligned, had a tailwind both directions, sun was shining, and everybody was civil. we scoped out this area three years ago when we were hankering to live up here and it was as gorgeous as we remembered it last. long live colorado summers!
this is our window view!

hopefully i'll have some good news to report about my race tomorrow.
here's some tragic news: tim russert of nbc's meet the press died today. collapsed at work apparently. rest in peace mr. russert.

11 June, 2008

Today Was A Good Day And I Didn't Have To Use My...

...okay sorry ice cube. here's ice cube's explicit lyrics for the inspiration to my blog's title. it's from his 1992, gangsta rap album the predator. it's a great cd. his given name's actually O'Shea Jackson. let's begin: melissa's-my extraordinary companion-working late tonight so no riding for me this evening (that doesn't involve rollers). after we dropped off my girls at soccer camp, mason and i hiked around evergreen lake. i did this to run some energy out of the dude. it was cold today, some minor cold front's hovering locally so it was almost fall-like. evergreen lake's at 7077' or 2157 meters, hence the fall-like comparison (with this unusual cold front). there was hardly anybody out there, except for a family we saw again (where we exchanged pleasantries) when we eventually moseyed into the library. they're doing street improvements at the intersection from highway 74 to the evergreen lake house/rec center so that means a boat load of trucks were out there which translates to spellbinding fascination of these huge trucks with mason. he was just dumbfounded and awe-struck watching these trucks and large machines moving to and fro and receiving and/or dumping rocks from bulldozers and other sundry big-arsed machines. i think he was hyp-moh-tahzed (hypnotized) audio-visually by the six-wheeled, one person, bulldozer (i think it's called a bobcat?). this cold made us go into a local coffee/pastry joint in downtown, historical evergreen strip where we ordered a hot chocolate, topped with whipped cream (for him) and a double-espresso (for me). their espresso was aaaahhiiite (so-so). i always compare my espressos to my bud kenny's espressos. kenny has a saeco machine that creates (he makes 'em actually) these buttery-yet slightly edgy, cream colored, velvety-finish espressos that are simply sublime when we meet as his joint before we go riding or to do some general tom foolery...i digress...it was actually enjoyable hanging out with the moose-unlike yesterday's tribulation(s) with him. i said to myself now i see why people shake their babies. i mean i can see where people's tempers get the best of them; hopefully, my self-control, self-editing systems will always be in place when my blood pressure starts to rise exponentially. yup, that was yesterday. today's--wednesday--a different creature altogether. nothing but a good moose and happier dad.
i scored at the library too. i checked out common's be; art blakey & the jazz messengers' free for all (quite possibly the best jazz assemblage since miles' kind of blue ensemble); my morning jacket's tennessee fire; and lupe fiasco's food & liquor. man! i always sing praises to the jefferson county public library's evergreen branch. i also checked out a book titled: God's Problem: How the Bible Fails to Answer Our Most Important Question-Why We Suffer from Bart D. Ehrman. heard a trailer for it on npr via neil cohen interviewing said author. you gotta love national public radio.this was wednesday.
i'm adding thursday to this blog starting now...and in order for me to go riding with the moose (attached to the kid trailer), i had to patch a flat on the chariot and clean up and maintain my giant road bike since the last time i road her (since i purchased the fuji). i slapped a pair of my old time a-tac pedals on her too because i cannibalized my speedplay zeroes on the fu-g.
here's the (nws) weather report:
Late Afternoon: A 10 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 66. Breezy, with a west wind around 22 mph.
that westerly wind was brutal! i tried to head south so that i wouldn't get the full effect of a headwind. there were some parts of the bike path that i felt the full brunt of a headwind, i was in my 39x24 just barely crawling. if there was an uphill if i stopped pedaling, i'da fallen over. on the flip side, during the tailwind portions i was cruuuuising-probably going close to 40 miles an hour. there were also parts of the trail where i was riding diagonally due to the winds. yeah boi! i got a real nice workout. it seemed like one big interval workout today. i rode in such a way that my suffering would be comparable-albeit slight-to race conditions. another interesting note: i purchased some new earbuds for my ipod called skullcandy. yeah i know it sounds kinda ill but the bass response is quite satisfying; and the silicon frames around the speakers really eliminate the wind noise resulting from my pistons propelling me forward at rather manly speeds. i picked up the girls from their soccer (camp) practice and now it's time for some homemade fries and some vegetarian chicken patties on the grill for din-din.
newsworthy mention: the supreme court today reversed dub-ya's congress approved special laws for enemy combatants detained at guantanamo. instead o'doing a tribunal-like court for enemy combatants/terrorists..etc. each detainee is now obligated to a criminal trial a la federal court(s) to see if their detention is legit (habeas corpus). kinda nutty, if we don't kill you because you're trying to kill us (or running planes into iconic buildings)-but instead get captured-we'll give you a fair trial. can't we just slap some geneva convention on 'em and treat em as war criminals? i can respect the justices though putting a checks-and-balances on the president and his spiraling out-of-control executive orders...hmmmm i smell bureaucratic implosion for our federal courts on our tab kids.....

04 June, 2008

Looks Like Rain Today

here's what a typical day's like for daddy daycare. today, mason woke me up about 7 o'clock with a smile and pushing on my tummy. so, i tell him to go potty and to put on his big boy underwear (i keep telling myself one day, i too will wear big boy underpants but until then i'll keep dreaming until that day arrives). he helps me make waffles. my god, i didn't know how much i loved waffles until this summer. i like 'em crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. kind of like yours truly in the summertime. the girls get up around 8:30 and we eat breakfast. my sweet melissa left me some plates from dinner last night so i clean up that mess and generally pick up after ourselves. the reason i wasn't home for dinner last night is because i joined my friend and college (university of texas, boy!!!)buddy charles in boulder for the oh so notorious bus stop ride. it's where the hardcore, elite road cyclists (including some pros) show up for a group ride (i call it the shit-on-your-neighbor ride). we go and i make it almost to the end. it's great intensity and i can always use high-intensity pack riding. i get shelled about 5 miles back towards town on our return trip (yes i cycle, but i didn't say i was good). we get back and i eat fish tacos with charles at illegal pete's.
10:30 rolls around and we're out playing. a front's coming in and it looks like rain's a'comin'.

i check the nws website and here's what they're saying about today/tonight.

This Afternoon: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 69. North northeast wind around 5 mph.

Tonight: A chance of showers and thunderstorms, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after midnight. Cloudy, with a low around 35. North wind around 5 mph becoming calm. Chance of precipitation is 60%.


we've been spoilt lately by having our house in the high 60s at night so i chainsaw some firewood for a couple of nights burning...


...while the kids train for paris-nice, liege-baston-liege, paris-roubaix, and some other classics and semi-classics. maybe, one day, they'll get the invite for a national tour.

here they are tearing it up on our private dirt road

for lunch i'm grilling black bean burgers and baking tater-tots. both these gastronomical treats'll be drowning in ketchup if my kids had their food accessorising proclivities. here's proof:

the kids are playing indoors now while listening to the soundtrack from the movie enchanted. if y'all don't have kids, the disney factor might be minimal in your quotidian goings on; but, watching the dvd with my family i must say i truly enjoyed this cutesy, very disney movie. during quiet time, mason has to nap while maricel has to read to me for 30 minutes. she's reading snow white to me. she's quite the reader nowadays. maura does her artwork and also reads. boring enough yet? well anyhoo it's the late afternoon now. i'ma make some vegetable stir-fry with fried rice (it's not really fried) while the chilluns enjoy some good ole pbs kids' shows. personally i looove word girl (and her sidekick, captain huggy face)!
if you're not hip to word girl, it's kind of like pee-wee's playhouse where there's a word-of-the-day. this video clip's of capt. huggy face bustin' a move on the word-of-the-day: pensive (do you know what pensive means? think about it...then play the vid. i crack myself up sometimes...).

ite den kids. i'll talk to you later (sorry the tubes-i'm dating myself here...)

03 June, 2008

Yee-haw you Sahklin' Mow-ROHNS!!!!

read this essay about barney fife and his way of enforcing life in mayberry...

Cyclists and Dodge City
By Sheriff Jim Alderden-Larimer County

Don’t you just love this time of year, when the birds, boats and cyclists come out? Well, two out of three ain’t bad.

Tis the time of year for countless walking, running and cycling events that positively or negatively affect each of us. Then there’s the inevitable conflict between the motorists and cyclists using roads that are in disrepair and aren’t fit for either. The Sheriff’s Office and other law enforcement agencies are tasked with keeping the peace and enforcing the laws. The end result is that nobody is happy with us.

First, let me address the numerous events that impact traffic flow and raise the ire of the affected neighborhoods. All of these events require a permit. There are several stages of review. Many of these cross jurisdictional lines and require approval from the municipalities that they traverse, the county and the state. In the case of the county permits, they are NOT issued by the Sheriff’s Office but from the Commissioners. In addition to the Sheriff’s Office reviewing the plans for the events, the Health Department, Road and Bridge, Parks Department, Engineering and the appropriate ambulance, hospital and fire departments all review the plans and either approve or impose conditions. In the case of the Sheriff’s Office, we REQUIRE notification of affected residents, a traffic plan, certified traffic control personnel at key intersections, and volunteers at other locations. If the event is a race, we require either full or rolling road closures. Again, we are charged with making the event as safe as possible, but can’t deny a permit just because it inconveniences people. That’s a balancing act for the County Commissioners.

The Sheriff’s Office no longer assigns personnel to these events except in the most extreme circumstances due to staffing shortages, other high priority events that dictate deputies be assigned to work overtime, and the liability associated with these events. When we do, the event must pay the costs associated with the services provided. I don’t remember the last time we assisted with one of these due to the volume of other off-duty work where the services of a sworn deputy are needed. (As an aside, to the person who groused on the Reporter Herald RH line about the Sheriff’s Office escorting a group of cyclists on Glade Road on Saturday, May 10, the Sheriff’s Office was NOT involved in this event and we definitely did NOT have a car escorting the cyclists either on duty or on overtime. This event was a collegiate event hosted by Colorado State University, so I suspect that the lead car may have been a CSUPD car.)

Second, let me address the issue of cyclists in general and our enforcement practice. I’ve recently received a deluge of e-mails from the cycling community of Boulder after a group of them encountered a deputy who gave then the “don’t let the sun set on your behind in my county” speech or something akin to that. What the rider claimed was that the deputy offered the option of either returning to Boulder County or receiving a ticket for the alleged violation (more on that in a moment). That may be what they heard, but the deputy is adamant that isn’t exactly what was said. Apparently there was some dialogue (argument) about the interpretation of the applicable statute and the cyclists were advised that we were going to enforce the law regarding impeding the traffic flow in our county. The deputy continued by stating that perhaps they should return to Boulder County where they indicated they could ride two abreast, or be cited if they continued to do so here. It really wasn’t a “get out of Dodge” ultimatum but “if you stay in Dodge, be prepared to follow the rules or suffer the consequences.” Perhaps he could have been more tactful, but anytime you get to even suggest something to deal with Dodge City, its okay in my book.

Actually, we have a bonus point system when ticketing individuals from Boulder. So far, the deputy in question has won a toaster oven and is close to earning a rod and reel combination. (Just kidding!)

Now to the real issue and the reason for the contact in the first place. We have been receiving complaints about cyclists hogging the road in the southern part of the county so we have stepped up our presence. Not surprisingly, many of these cyclists cop an attitude when stopped. Also not surprising, many of the cyclists with attitudes are part of the Boulder cycling community. Now, I’ve had some fun making fun of Boulder in the past (all warranted by the way) and some will say this is just another attempt to bash Boulder, but this is what has been reported to me. Many have taken to not carrying identification, so when asked to identify themselves for purposes of determining if there are any outstanding warrants (which we always check), it isn’t unreasonable to determine their county of residence. (Another warning – When issuing a citation for a violation, if we can’t verify the identification of the cyclist, they WILL be taken to jail pending identification and their bicycles impounded. This isn’t a threat. Its the way we operate.)

The dispute is over interpretation of C.R.S. 42-4-1412(5): “Any person riding a bicycle shall ride in the right hand lane. When being overtaken by another vehicle, such person shall ride as close to the right-hand side as practicable. Where a paved shoulder suitable for bicycle riding is present, persons operating bicycles shall ride on the paved shoulder….” Also at issue section (6)(a) “Persons operating bicycles on roadways shall ride single file: except that riding no more than two abreast is permitted in the following circumstances: (I) When riding two abreast will not impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic…” Many feel that they can ride two abreast as long as vehicle approaching from the rear can get around them, even if the motorist has to go into the oncoming lane of traffic. Our reading of the statute doesn’t require that traffic actually be impeded, only that it the cyclists riding two abreast would impede the normal flow of traffic if vehicles had to swerve into the oncoming lane, especially when there is a double yellow line as is the case in many of the winding roads favored by the cyclists. Further, section 6 doesn’t negate the requirement of section 5 to ride on the paved shoulder or as far to the right as feasible when being overtaken. While riding two abreast, one of the pair isn’t as far to the right as possible. When being overtaken, in order to get as far to the right as possible, they must ride single file if there is only one lane in that direction. If there is a paved shoulder, they should be riding on the shoulder, not in the traffic lane, regardless of whether or not they are impeding traffic.

The arguments offered by the cyclists are similar to those made by many motorists when blowing stop signs. “There were no other cars coming, so why should I have to stop?” - “They could still get around us, so what difference does it make?”

I believe in minimal enforcement to achieve the desired result. Our deputies have been giving verbal warnings, as was done to the Boulder cyclists. The warnings haven’t been heeded. I don’t expect my deputies to have to debate the point any further. We will begin issuing tickets for these violations, whether the offender lives in Larimer County, Boulder, or Dodge City.

To the motoring public, this does not mean its open season on cyclists. We also have received some complaints about motorists throwing objects at cyclists or harassing them. We will be equally aggressive in defending the rights of the cyclists to share the road as long as done legally and responsibly.

May 20, 2008
ps. thanks jayson

01 June, 2008

It Was Mason's Birthday Yesterday

he turned the big three point oh (that's two significant digits). we celebrated by going out for a hike near where we live with our in-laws, their dog, and our family including dogs. it was good. mason's turning into a pretty good hiker whereas maura's starting to get lazy. one of his presents was an inflatable t-ball set. he loved it. in fact, before we dug into his ice-cream cake, we had a quick game of t-ball in our front yard. here he is with his colorado rockies pennant hat (they're awful this year) right after he smacked the ball off the tee, grinning ear to ear.

and here's another view-aerial-of his ice-cream cake.

today, sunday, i went for a slammin' ride with my boy and teammate christopher. from denver we went up deer trail (see previous video) over to high grade, down co. 73, turned on co. 74 to bergen park but told chris i gotta turn around in order to make it back on time. so we pulled a u-bone off of 74 and continued to descent 73 into morrison and back home. all told, not counting breaks, it probably took us 5.5 h. on the very last climb out of high grade chris and i turned it into a crap on your neighbor ride (i.e. sprinting towards our imaginary finish line). he was climbing pretty good today and on this real long grinder he just mashed it, we were both fading but since i'm pretty intimate with the geography of this route i knew i could kick it towards the tail end of this climb. we were both cratered after each of our humongous, big chain ring attacks (if that's what you want to call it) and unable to shake each other off our respective wheels. and with that, it ended-quite satisfyingly-our uphill portion of our route. we descended like sleds and i was able to make it home within my hour wiggle factor. i'm guessing it was less than or equal to a 70 mile ride. next weekend's a very uphilly race starting in boulder called the mike horgan hillclimb. we climb on a street called magnolia, and on some dirt roads. look at the profile, the first surge is magnolia. the second surge is sugarloaf where the race ends. ouch kids.

it's kinda crazy but i know i won't come in last (but i'll probably be close). in colorado all the freaks show up for hillclimb races. afterwards, it was suggested that our whole vitamin cottage crew go for a long team ride. sounds painful. the jury's still out for this one kids...
today's funny highlight: when we were in lakewood--extremely hypoglycemic--at a red light, a dude taking a corner really squirrely-like had tri bars on his bike. as roadies we have this thing against triathletes on their geeked-out bikes. so, chris goes into this hans and frans voice impersonation (snl that is)or like arnold schwarzenegger as the tri-geek (in first person), and i chime in with something i'd rather not repeat and we were dying at the light. we couldn't inhale and we were both slapping our handlebars and repeating what i said, looking for the light to change to green. omygod we were dying of laughter from a hypoglycemic induced state-of-mind. i could only guess what motorists were thinking when they saw us off our rockers, pole position at a major intersection.