22 September, 2011

Miscellaneous ramblings related to (Map My) riding, work, music, and Google Earth.

My 29er locked and loaded.
Work has really interfered with my recreational abilities, especially with my inability to express myself via the written word (which I suppose is a form of catharsis/therapy). One especially cool thing I've done cycling-wise my experience cycling the Monarch Crest Trail. Don't know if has world-wide appeal in cycling circles but for top ten cycling things to do in Colorado, it's single digit up there. Come to think of it a local's top ten things to do out here would be cycling in Moab and/or Fruita, skiing off-piste in one of the many I-70 corridor, climbing (road biking) up Mt. Evans, honeymooning in Crested Butte (and hanging with Dave Wingo), riding Trail 401, hot springing it in Strawberry Jack(s) Hot Springs, making turns in Steamboat's champagne powder, to name a few but to NOT do the Monarch Crest Trail would be a definite downer.
Singletrack for the next 34 miles.
this and singletrack?  pinch me
Broke out the rollers to find cycling time in the legs. Being soccer dad, prepping for the day's lessons, and trying to be a good Dad (emphasis on TRYING) makes for difficulties in outdoor cycling. Rollers at least make the legs pretend it's cycling. Did the gambling themed extreme rated trails-i.e. Blackjack-out at Pine Valley Open Space. It was difficult for a first timer. The downhills are so steep and technical it's better to ride the downs than it is to walk your bike risking low speed damage to yourself negotiating, walking down.

At work I'm still working through my lunch so's I can minimize work at my house. I absolutely hate doing that.  Work is sucking the life out of me lately and I'm a big fan of the hypothesis of the The Symmetry of the Universe as it applies to my exaggerated parabolic leg of work with nary a scant of a recreational trajectory balancing it out.  Yuck.   Equilibrium where is (I know it's "are" but I'm trying to make a point) you?

Lately, music with lyric's not particularly exciting to hear except for maybe some older TV On The Radio or my public library's offering of the Double CD of Bruce Hornsby's (and the Noisemaker's) Bride of the Noisemaker, and the new Flaming Lips' redo of Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon.  I actually purchased the latter of the three aforementioned.  For the redo, If you're a fan of both The Lips and Floyd it really is a sonically hip rendition of Pink Floyd's LP while retaining the alternative, sonic near-kooky expansion inherent of the Lips. 

On the jazzy, piano-trio side, I've been grooving to the Brad Mehldau Trio's The Art of the Trio Vol. 4 - Back at the Vanguard and your favorite artist pushing-jazz-to-new-frontiers aka the free jazz artform...Ornette Coleman!  Specifically his 1961 gem The Art of the Improvisers.  Not at all experimental sounding like his Free Jazz LP but it actually has a conventional sounding just slightly unusual bop edge.  Just bought another jazz CD from an artist named Ignacio Berroa entitled, Codes.   Gonzalo Rubalcaba an amazing, Cuban, jazz-pianist in his own right produced this Blue Note gem.  Pick it up people.  Seems like the more stressed I am the more I gravitate towards Jazz.  Here's my cosmically, unrealistic hypothesis of why I find Jazz so attractive (at least lately).  Jazz was born/created from the historically beleaguered, mistreated and misunderstood African-American experience trying to find a voice once they could stand on their legs as a sentient, art-producing community.  This awful burden transmutates and is interpreted circa the 1950-1960-ish jazz scene producing America's most sonically potent art form.  As I stress from work, the struggle from their music makes it that much more translatable to me at a near personal, empathetic level.   That's my hypothesis and if you don't concur there's a 95% chi-square confidence analysis where you can probably kiss my...   

I'm really looking forward to (not particularly excited mind you) the cycling season next year.  After all the stuff that went down with my family (I suppose it's still continuing) it took me away from the cycling arena temporarily enough that it makes me miss it.  I'm trying to do some constructive training in a way that it doesn't lead to burn out.  I don't know if doing the hour of power should be in my early season regimen but damn it sure is fun.  I need to be doing LSD kinda miles but at my stage in life I'm at the point where I have to take it whenever I can.  I kinda want to do the mountain biking marathon events but that all depends on what kind of off-season endurance training I can muster.  Running doesn't seem to bother mountain biking muscle training.  In fact, I want to do some Winter 10ks if it's allowable.  I want to shoot for a sub-hour Turkey Trot in Dallas at sea level, the distance being 8 miles.  With the 29er underneath me the novelty to race is resurfacing.  At the very beginning I was still a bit chicken to really let her rip thinking the bike's a bit fragile to really thrash it like I do my Yeti; but now, knowing where the center-of-gravity is on her, I mostly let her rip.  On occasion, the mentally perceived additional height of me on the cockpit of the 29er flowing over the really technical stuff throws me the mental left hook where I think I have to slow it down (thus second guessing my abilities to kill it).  It's a learning experience but for the marathon events I think it will be an advantage (if I race the sixty year-olds).  Tight switchbacks I'm learning to negotiate with the bigger wheels and its desire to go straight at high speeds are somethings I have to adapt to.  I really have to emphasize the body english over the tricky bits because of the rolling inertia once I get her to ramming speed.

Since I'm on this completely random tear, here's a MapMyRide Google Earth of one of my favorite rides near my house.  The Pleasant Park-HighGrade Loop.


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