16 October, 2010
Stuff I Saw Whilst Cycling and other Non-Sequitors on the 16th of October
Last Friday, due to a change of plans I was able to go for a spur-of-the-moment ride with a one member of the homey trinity-Hez Chilly. We started at his place and I felt like a fifth wheel because originally it was a ride date with his son. We rode in a subdivision called "Highlands Ranch" and it was a visually beautiful ride. The sun was about to go down, the weather was cool turning crisp and most of the plants' photosynthetic machinery started to wind down giving way to non-green organic, muted colors. Very pretty.
20.5 miles later after chit-chatting up a storm we're back at Billy's with goofy grins on our faces. A most excellent way to end the protracted work week! Hit 47.5 miles an hour (76.55 km/h) on a descent where I attacked on the ascent part but Billy shut it down and crested the apex before me. Noice.
Saturday's soccer day and we did split duty. I watched Maricel's team win 1-0 and saw her depart with her teammates for a slumber party. Great girls, all class acts. Very polite, smart and athletic to boot. Hopefully they won't fall for a loser guy. I'm a guy (hopefully not a loser although some would beg to differ) and I'm a high school teacher. I've seen my fair share of loser boys (thankfully that is a very, very small number) who hopefully will not grow up to be loser adults. There is however a high correlation between loser kids and their loser parents.
Going up Pleasant Park...
After she left and cleaning house for a bit I took off on my standard, Pleasant Park/Highgrade/285 climbing loop. By now, the weather up here at 8k's (2438 m) pretty crisp; you add some wind and it gets mighty crispy if you don't have the gear. I wore a base layer with leg and arm warmers. Frigid on the descent and near perfect for climbing. My goal was to go in the highest gear possible for near maximum chill effect. The views I normally take for granted-that if you took the time to suss it- would be pretty damn amazing and waaaaay aesthetically pleasing to the nature lover who also happens to be wearing an inordinate amount of lycra/fleece-lined spandex while riding a carbon fiber racing bike.
The brewing up of La Niña seems to have our part of the world just a wee bit drier than what I normally would've expected; or, it could be due to global climate change (if you think climate change is not scientifically supported log off now and go back to your village because they're missing an idiot). Chill mode takes the race-mentality of trying to pass people I see up the the road and forces me to work on technique. For example, pedaling in circles, syncing the breathing with the cadence, finding the sweet spot on my saddle for my sensitive man areas (I ride with Chamois cream), not death gripping the bars, belly breathing, belching super loud (I look like a snake yawning) and giggling (from said belch), expunging high-velocity Texas hankies/liquid shrapnel from my nares from this malingering head cold, standing and rocking the bike in ways i hit other parts of my leg muscles...all that I take into consideration whenst going chilly-chill. It was a singularly, splendiferous day in the high country.
One more switchback to Highgrade
Here's my dirt driveway; home...
Afterwards I took me doggies for a 30 minute walk in our favorite hiking spot: Flying J. The coincidence was when my iPod was on shuffle, it played a track from one of the most awesome pet/dog books of all time: Where the Red Fern Grows.
********BOOK AND MOVIE SPOILER ALERT******
The randomly played track was when Big Dan had already died and Little Anne (they worked in tandem saving the author's life) was dying of a broken heart (Big Dan was her brother) and didn't want to eat and was simultaneously starving to death. She eventually crawled her way (her back legs weren't working at this point of her suffering) to where the author-Wilson Rawls-buried Big Dan. This is where Little Anne chose her final resting spot. My eyes got all misty re-hearing this. A real tear jerker I'm telling you and this novel was based on his earlier years living out East in the boonies. We heard it on our way back from Cape Cod this past summer and all the adults in the 4runner cried too. Team M is very sensitive. My oldest daughter cried during the part of another excellent, animated movie The Iron Giant when the giant sacrificed itself for the sake of his friends.
Next week I have a week off for October Break. I'm going to see my older brother in Phoenix, AZ. He too is a mountain biker (imagine that!) and we're going to tear some $hit up hopefully. A minimum of three hour cycling days (every day) out in the surreal landscape of the high desert including saguaros, creosote, mesquite and palo verde trees along with the random Gila monster should be of some relaxing, carbon blowing, catching up, worthwhile fun while hanging with me bro!
Been listening to a lot of Pearl Jam lately too. Coincidentally it's what I listened to as a first year teacher back in Plano, TX. Seems like I'm a first year teacher again energetically speaking with this mentally rotten anchor called the (unpaid) sixth class. Maybe I can make a movie spoof of the Sixth Sense called the Sixth Class? In this movie too the protagonist will also see dead people-they'll be the teachers (or the students?).
My Sweet Melissa secured for us two tickets to see Dave Matthews/Tim Reynolds acoustic concert gig in a 6,800 person venue. Man, how amazing's that show going to be?! Talented, talented musicians.