Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Faction Splits from the CMA to form the CMG

These colors don't ride away.  First it was the Crips and Bloods, now it is the Pumpkins.  A small divisional rift in the Charlotte Messenger Association based on the colors of modern fashion has caused a small clique to break away and form the Charlotte Messenger Gang.  Charlotte's latest bike coalition has chosen Orange to be the color that represents them and what they stand for.  In an official release the CMG stated, "L'orange is just like us and we are serious business."

Here, the group's newest member Swazey is placing his final bid on some new orange Briko sunglasses that he had been following on eBay.
Founding Pumpkin and CMG member is spotted here 'e' ordering 3 more pairs of l'orange pantaloons. 
This fellow is not yet a CMA or CMG associate, but he showed up last week pointing out to me that he is qualified.  Not only does he have the necessary attire to be a Pumpkin, but he also has a bike and the Nike Logo which are both mentioned in the CMG handbook as needed to complete 'the look'.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The CMA's Lucky Bike Commuter of the Month

The other day I stepped out of Three Wacky Fargo under a crystal clear sky after delivering an important package to the 30th Floor.  I went left out of the swirly side door for my bicycle which was fortunately locked on the Tryon side when all of a sudden I heard a loud almost flushing sound coming from high above. 
When I looked up I saw water cascading straight down in a singular fall racing towards and about to crash onto Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. with all of its molecular weight and wetness. 
A fire suppression system pressure test caused something to happen that none of the engineers responsible expected or they would have warned G4 Wackenhut to be prepared.  Of course G4 wasn't, but they did make it up as they went along. 
The lucky bicycle commuter diligently working for the man inside the building has no idea that his rig is being artificially rained upon.  When he locked up in the morning, the sky was void of any clouds and he was feeling good, like today was his lucky day. 
Ellen D., one of his co-workers was across the street at the Verizon Store when she saw the unexpected weather system coming down. She immediately belled up Bob with a street side report, "Yeah Bob, it's me Ellen and it looks like your bike is about to be dumped on with water." 
"Seriously Ellen?  How is that possible? It is a beautiful day out there and I am feeling great as usual when I commute to work on my bike?", Bob replied. 
Once the wind shifted the impact Zone of the pouring man made rain I went in for a closer look and saw moisture in Bob's helmet and
standing water in his rear rack bag. 
Bob has been awarded the CMA's Lucky Bike Commuter of the Month.  Congratulations Bob, there are no prizes at this time, however, by being recognized on this post your experience will remain etched in history as long as the binary cloud over Beijing(or is it Hong Kong?) continues to be powered by mountain tops, controlled Nuclear Fission and the stakes of the Global Corporate Plan of Aggression.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Moth Training

On a recent ride this moth followed me for awhile before landing on my arm.  I pulled along side the trail to give a closer look then he perched onto my shin and posed for the portrait above.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Memories of a Volcano in Mexico

This is what I was doing during Easter Break in 2005, the year of the Cool.  Josh made this picture of me cooking it up in the base camp hut(4,375m)  of El Pico de Orizaba the day after Easter and the day before I moved my camp to a thin lava ridge at 5,155m. This was my third trip to the mountain in the previous two and a half years.  I saw this print last night for the first time in years and was reminded of how I felt during this trip.  The light in my eyes is real, the immense summit cone looms majestically out of the large glass window on the wall to my right.  Citlaltepetl's(the original Native Indian name for Orizaba) peak is covered in snow and in the early evening setting sun it was illuminated bright white and gold.
Josh also made this image of me fixing a flat while he and I were on an acclimatization ride from 2,440m to 3,430m.  The summit of this 5,840m volcano stands quietly shrouded in a dark weather cloud around 30km behind me. After I made the fix we rode through some upward undulating fields passed a young shepherd tending to his flock all the way up into the unusually tall ever green tree line on the mountain.  Hours had gone by, the day was waning by the time we made our descent all the way back to town from the piney smelling trees.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Catch F-22 Wrapped Her

I swiped the next two images of the F-22 Raptor planes of war from the net. Photographers unidentified.
Before noon on Sunday I drove out to Botzie's house to deliver a load of British Thermal Units in the form of seasoned oak that I had cached out in the way back from the end of last season's stores. Jeff lives down a dirt track road in an old white farm house that was built in 1910 roughly 28 miles east of here. His place is surrounded by agricultural fields and cows roaming on rolling pastures that are lined with trees. He dwells alone, self supported in a place of dense quiet solitude where he can concentrate on his photographic real art project in the home that has become his studio.
 When I arrived he was heart deep in the remodeling construction work of the back kitchen in his house. Walls are coming down and floor to ceiling windows are going up. His Solo effort has put in place an amazing framed arch that extends from inside to outside the house overhead where there used to be a low ceiling. The end result of his work is fantastic and will do more than aesthetically improve his domicile.

After chatting about the project for a bit we went out front and unloaded the wood in the belly of the Montero onto his classic covered farm house porch. While we worked I noticed the occasional movement of a frog or turtle in the bright green algae covered pond just below the sloping golden grassy hill in front of us. The light breeze was quieted by the bright sun, all of the landscape and lack of human progress around us made for a serene setting in the form of our reality. The work of moving the wood to the porch was over and we found ourselves in another discussion, perhaps about mountains and people that travel to them.

All of a sudden out of the still quiet coming from the west and fast was the sound of a powerful jet plane. As soon as I heard it, another aircraft appeared and caught up to the first one doubling the nightmarish scream headed right for us from the west. I was sitting in the cab of my truck facing Jeff and east as they came bearing down on our position a few thousand feet above the tree tops at around about 500mph. Involuntarily I stepped out on the ground a few more paces to get a better line of sight, there they were perfectly clear in their presentation of progress.

Two F-22 Raptors flying in a small echelon emitting a strange right wing only contrail raced east in the cloudless Carolina sky. I identified these machines based on their particular underbelly profile that clearly displayed front and rear wings which are cut out at the same angle. Dark and modern stealth fighters are easily scrambled into the sky over this fine nation in the name of an agenda.

Just as the two planes passed by us, two more F-22 Raptors came shrieking from the same direction as the first ones did. We realized that this show of force and display of flying weapons of mass destruction must have something to do with the NFL, the Carolina Panthers and the numbing down of a Nation's Culture desperately seeking something to believe in and be proud of. A fly by over the stadium, of course.

I made this image of an empty BOA Stadium last month.
Interestingly enough, a few minutes after all four cleared our location, maybe 15 or 20 miles to the east, the motors came back to life and sounded like they were deep bending and accelerating even more as the planes turned to head back west right for us and on to Charlotte. They must have only been practicing on the earlier pass. Now was the real deal headed for Bank of America Stadium, a bunch of cheering Americans with their fists in the air and kick off of a spectator sport that has absolutely no implications in any of the fans' lives, but it does tell a true story about the strategy of a Nation waging war abroad.

On their second pass coming back I thought about the visceral connection to what I see as real. I thought about how within a few minutes anyone paying attention near the uptown would hear, then see these mechanical instruments in the sky and have a perception based on what they were seeing and feeling. I wondered about the pilots of these crafts. Do they think they are invincible with such thrust energy and fire power created in Indiana at their finger tips? Do they realize how deathly ominous and full of terror that they appear to me from my perspective as a human with my feet on the ground? Then there is the crowd in the stadium taking the few seconds needed to pull the corporate plan of aggression away from their faces long enough to actually feel something about the darkness they are seeing rip across the sky. I stood still as these planes disappeared to the west now in what looked like a wedge. The missing man formation this far out will surely carry enough energy to make the crowd cheer and completely miss the end result point for failure to identify the consequences of our collective actions.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Wednesday Foster Alert: This Albino Doberman Pinscher Bent a Spoon with his Brain

For the past few days we have been taking care of Casper from the Humane Society of Charlotte. All of the fosters that we have brought in are special, but once in a while one stands out to have a unique inner quality that separates itself from the rest. This guy has done that. Casper is an adult Albino Doberman Pinscher whom within a few minutes of traveling with me became temporarily renamed Powder, like the ultra-white kid who felt pain and joy in the movie.

Powder fit well in the existing pack and he did not seem to mind the cat at all. This dog is stealthy quiet and very sweet. Some dogs carry themselves with an air of innate knowledge as they move through their day to day routines. This guy is twice as intelligent than any of the smartest ones before him. Hanging out with Powder is almost spooky because he carries him self very noiseless physically, however his mental and emotional vibrations are louder and more honed than anything I have ever heard before in a dog. Powder is truly an amazing creature and has a super special energy at the quanta of his being.

This albino Doberman is so gifted that with his mind alone he can bend a steel spoon as witnessed in this series of photographs. The Vibrant Pink Nose Knows!Here Powder concentrates real hard on focusing all of his mental energy into the spoon.
And within seconds, WALLAH!! Good boy, but now could you bend my spoon back straight?
This morning I have to leave the house early to take Powder aka Casper back to the Humane Society where he will be available soon for a permanent adoption. If you or anyone you know are in a position to give this fellow a safe place to call home, please contact the HSC and do so right away. Powder would make anyone a brilliant companion and friend!

Monday, September 20, 2010

In Air and Water is Human Transformation

The other day my 2007 Trans Germany Partner, 3 time National Mountain Bike Champion and the 2003 CMA Rookie of the Year Rebecca Tomaszewski stopped in the Jar for a bit and over coffee she showed some skin. For those of you who just Google or Bing searched; 'Rebecca shows skin' and were delivered to this post, here you are:
That's right folks Becky is truly ravishing in her perpetual iconic yet mysterious beauty. This is just a hint of her femininity outside, a small section of the taut articulate skin bag at her inside elbow that holds her muscle, blood, organs and bones together is here on photographic display for all y'all to see. I never asked permission when I took the shot, her sun baked skin drew me in, not her dreamy eyes, straight raven locks, olive'ish skin, webbed feet or her over all ripped girlish figure wrapped in those hip little chick jeans. Nope, it was her veins that I find the most attractive attribute of this ultra endurance cycling athlete.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

On the Bright Side: Yet another Trans Continental rider rolls through the Jar

On Thursday I was headed out Tryon for the 500 south block into a very hot, strange, dry headwind code orange that has been the pattern for the past month and a half. Prior to that since May the M.O. for ground level atmospheric condition had been the same except for the dry part, the summer breeze out of the south and west had been wet. Side tracked already I will try to stay on point here. The hot wind blast in my face being diverted off of the buildings and street curbs was invisible but very much present, like true god itself. I am thinking that this is middle September at 91F, the only thought at those suspended moments in time. Looking up into the bright light of my exposed destination and towards an upside down triangle some 500ft above me translucent in the center, the sky on the other side visible, but reflective in the framed in outline I saw a lone rider loaded coming towards me on the gift of a summery tail wind breeze.

Meet the CMA's 2010 Bike Touring Trans Continental Rider of the Year, 28 year old Willamette Valley Oregon native Joshua 'Josh' Brown who is too cool for blogging his experience so I am going to take a second and do it for him.

*Note: Last year's CMA BTTCROTY was the 23 day Seattle to Charlotte, I mean Seattle to the Jar effort of none other than James E. Good who has been up to something crazy on his bike again. Read just what that was by clicking the blue letters of his name.
When we passed I kept going to get the job done and then caught up with him at one of the nicest all beef hot dog dealers in town. Josh told me that he had left Portland Oregon on April 27, then he rattled off the state to state to state and so on transfer as: Oregon to Nevada(record low temps), Nevada to Arizona, Arizona to New Mexico, New Mexico to Texas, Texas to Oklahoma, Oklahoma to Texas, Texas to Oklahoma, finally Oklahoma into Arkansas, Arkansas as fast as possible into Louisiana, Louisiana to Mississippi, Mississippi to Alabama, Alabama to the pan handle of Florida, Florida's entire gulf coast then east coast line up to Georgia and Savannah for South Carolina into North Carolina.
After spending at least Thursday night in Salisbury NC his route looked loosely like the following: NC through the Smokey Mountain National Park to Nashville Tennessee, Tennessee back east to Virginia and the Sky Line Drive all the way to just south of Washingtoon DC. Final Destination: Our fine Wal-Mart Nation's Capital.
Josh left a six year career as an Alaskan fisherman after realizing that it was not about the money, but the dysfunctional constant reality openly avoided in the risk trade formula involved in such a task. When he wasn't sure what to do next in life he fell on his own intuitive self voice for the answer and it naturally came, take a long ass bike ride and look for what you see rather than lament avoiding the truth that is right in front of you when you stay in the same spot. His existence is at his own dispense and that was apparent in his physical manifestation and form.
The Classic Charlotte Bike Tour Portrait Shot in front of a Hell Raiser Prop. Notice how Josh's reflection does not show up behind bars in reflection of man being trapped. He must be a witch.
Josh has his hydration covered with two aluminum bottles.
5 Random facts about his tour so far:
1. The only church that said no to him camping on their property the entire ride so far was a Catholic Church in East Texas where the Priest told him that no homeless people were allowed.
2. Rednecks in Louisiana ran him off the road in broad daylight hooting and hollering from a mile behind him and closing fast. He did not get hurt but he did get cracked out and a broken rear wheel worth way more than the replacement after the crash slamming on the side of the road.
3. Heat Indexes for weeks on end across the southern line were constantly 110F.
4. Josh's Rig is a steel Fuji Touring bike with no computerized mechanism tracking his positionor time space movement on earth.
5. He has only flatted 5 times thus far during his close to 4,000mile zig-zag journey!!!!
Here he is stepping of north on Tryon for Salisbury NC, the rest of his ride and the future outcome of his life's destiny. It was interesting hanging out with you for bit in the JAR Josh. It was also a privilege to ride with you for a bit, good luck on the rest of your trip and ride on Joshua Brown...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Pollyanna Want a Cracker?

As in training a parrot to repeat the question you just asked it knowing damn well that one of my peeves is answering a question with a question, let alone the same question. It is good practice for me to keep my baggage separate from that of others and this case is no different.

Here's the question: Why did CMPD and/or the City of Charlotte change the CMPD web site last month over the weekend of August 1 to a less informative source than the one that had been in place? Seems to me the opposite of progress in this progressive nation. Can we handle the truth?

This is somewhat serious information to try to understand considering that up until that weekend I used the old site often to help me understand and make sense of all sorts of things that I witnessed as a productively employed tax paying citizen of this fine town. Under the right circumstances that information I used to be able to obtain may have helped me to make life changing decisions. Now that tool is gone.

For example, if in the middle of the night while sleeping with the windows open I was ripped out of a vivid dream by a barrage of gunfire roughly 1 mile to the north I could fire up the PC, go to the significant event and 911 log and piece together what was happening right down to who responded from law enforcement and what the status of the situation was.

Another example. Let's say I observed something mysterious happening in one of the tall buildings downtown with fire, police and perhaps even Fed response for hours one hot afternoon. No one around seemed to have the answers and most folks getting through their tough days did not even seem to take notice. With the old site I could once again use my brain and track backwards in time to figure out exactly what prompted the authorities to respond, right down to the caller and complaint.

Now when I hear the gunfire close by or I read about the standoff, murder, suicide off of Monroe or I see something peculiar happening with CMPD, CFD and some blacked out Crown Vics downtown I go to my trusted new CMPD web site and I get nothing to help me understand what I am seeing and feeling. Rumor is that even scanners are useless these days because the police have been ordered to go cell phone when the incident is coded serious enough to do so, that way no one hears anything at all. That order sounds like it may have come down all the way from Washington DC and is probably carried out in many other major cities across the US. Once again the truth has been taken away and is absent from the public frame of mind while every other avoidance measure that you could imagine fills the space gap of awareness.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pro Level Lock Up Style

Can you tell which one of these bikes belongs to the Unprofessional Cyclist? Just the other day the owner/operator of sent out a distress signal from the Charlotte Uptoon Area to a few of us lucky senior salty CMA members wanting to know of either of us had a spare lock that she could use. Apparently on the one day she actually needed her lock, she had forgotten it at home on the nightstand next to the almost empty bottle of Jack Daniel's and the glow sticks. Never take your lock to bed, at that point it owns you!
I should have told her to put a plastic Family Dollar(gotta love the FD) bag around it and tie it off real good like. The plastic bag method works just like a Kryptonite Fahgettaboudit without all the stupid bulky weight. Plus, who needs keys to keep up with when all you have to do is untie a few square knots?
Don't we all miss John Candy? Vice Grips on that beautiful seat post!?!?
*I made all of the above images with my on board EyePhone Camera yesterday in front of the Mecklenburg County Courthouse. For Clarification: Both Richard and I were there simultaneously on business not pleasure as is often the case...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Two Suns

Every Star has a sister star traveling in relative proximity to it and its orbit through the Universe. I have read a bit about and asked many questions of a near physicist regarding the Binary Sun Theory. Of course the constant great size distance growth of our galaxy in the context of a 14 billion year outward expansion of the Universe could have these two stars only coming close to each other perhaps every 70,000 to 100,000 years.

I made this series of images a few weeks ago from up high in one of the buildings.
I wonder about visible light when I look up at the information disc through the glass of the lens and a polarized filter being twisted for maximum contrast.
Seems to me that it is possible certain light may only be seen by the eye through particular types of filtration.
Presently our sun's sister is not plainly visible. Theory has found the sister star's remnants or perhaps the particulate matter that will one day become its beginnings, however these are human interpretations being made on the face of a Plan It looking back up towards it.
What would it be like to see two suns hanging in the sky? Maybe their paths would illuminate the entire earth constantly blocking out all darkness for ever. Time Change. Would our sun still be center stage while the sister stays far enough away as to not get caught up in the race or would they battle for their way in to claim the middle spot?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Hog in Heaven

"Oi indeed", as a Kiwi once said.

One of the many rewarding things about holding down the job of bicycle messenger in any metropolis around the world or small ville on the South Island of New Zealand is that things happen within the context of the day to day job routine that are never normal or on the schedule. Surprises and unpredictable life changing events are constant and accelerating all around you as you manage your work day from the saddle.
Take Friday for example. I show up at one of two of my 1030 schedule stops, pick up the basket on 29 and check the empty one on 28. Just as I exit the elevator and cross the wide shiny white marble lobby my phone rings. It was Abby letting me know that she had a filing for the court which changed my next move from heading to my second 1030 first. Instead it now made more sense logistically to go grab the unexpected, non-scheduled call first before proceeding with the normal route. Another rewarding thing about being a messenger is that there are perpetual changes in the order of your work flow. At anytime someone can and will call with a special request that has you moving in a direction that you were not planning.
At any rate, when I unlocked it made sense to me to use a little modern alley cut through to get to Church Street then ditty bop over to the Carillon Building. The variable here was that Charlotte was hosting another Bujahideen Festival known as the 8th Annual Blues, Brews and BBQ Festival which had vendors set up underneath pop up tents on both sides of the little alley. I tried to concentrate on my line without making any eye contact with the out of staters setting up their cookers and trophies for display. Then it happened, when I rolled passed the third table down on the left I could not believe what I was looking at.
A giant and most recently dead pig was laying there on its back eyes closed wide shut. Yikes, I thought to myself as I noticed the flies on the bloody red exposed flesh hanging open from the gutting. It was easy to recognize the head man in charge so I set my bike down and asked him, "Is this your pig?" He replied with a touch of modest pride that it was indeed his pig that he planned on winning the competition with. I then asked him if it would be alright if I made some pictures of his posthumous award winning swine. "No problem", he said with a scowl and the wave of his meaty hand across his own torso from left to right.

After making a few snaps I rolled away to continue my work circuit wondering what the next thing that I was not expecting to see would be. I would have rolled through and documented the rest of the modern day festival for you but my heart was just not in it. Like many that take over the Center City of Charlotte this festival/party was filled with tons of waste ready to be scooped by the garbage trucks standing by idling on diesel parked at every other side street off of the main drag. As well as there was obvious signs of gluttony, anger, hate and most importantly a watered down non-authentic culture moping around behind masks of happiness, a thin sheer veil revealing their true lack of understanding any real connection to their now yet wanting something so desperately that they are walking towards the illusion created for them by the Corporate Plan of Aggression. Once again the strategy of a nation is apparent and what a sad sight it is indeed.

For those of you bound to see me later this morning in an elevator and ask how my weekend was, let me save you the breath. It was fine. I split, moved and stacked the 4th and 5th trips of downed red oak from a few miles away I that have been working on for the past two weeks. Also, Ms. Arcen and I played several games of Mancala which I still have not figured out the strategy of.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Another Soldier Comes Home to North Carolina

Pfc. James McClamrock
(unidentified photographer, taken from the Herald on line)
Less than one week after I watched the President speak to the Nation for just over eighteen minutes declaring the end of combat operations in Iraq and letting us know that it was time to turn the page, 22 year old Pfc. James McClamrock, a Rifleman in the United States Army's Hawaii based 25th Infantry Division was shot to death by an enemy north of Baghdad. He was one of two combat infantryman killed in the incident as reported by yesterday's Charlotte Observer. McClamrock lived in Concord North Carolina, less than twenty miles from where I sit here this morning drinking a small cup of warm tea. My deepest sorrow and respect goes out to James' family and the life loss that they are feeling right now. Someone once told me that what is real can never be taken away.

When I did my follow up research last week about the end of the combat operations in Iraq that the President had announced, I remember thinking to myself in the discovery that there is no way combat was over in Iraq, nor will it ever be until the end of time. What a farce we are led to believe as always. The news which is sometimes avoided by the American public, as it should be for constantly throwing out the decoys for us to forget about anyway is not telling the truth. The United States Embassy in Baghdad opened last May and is ten times bigger than any embassy we have ever laid claim stake to in the world. This installation alone employs over 5,000 active duty infantry trained soldiers and has mobile rocket launchers connected to multiple satellites raised high on all four corners. It is there proudly facing Iran and points east to represent a protection base of what is often labelled or understood as our interests in the region and the world. Although we both know that the referred to interest is affordable fuel prices to keep the dream alive for four more yards in the same direction, the strategy of a nation at war is apparently still not wanting to face the truth. There is no end to combat in Iraq as evident by the latest tragedy.

Besides the overland physical proximity to where Pfc. McClamrock will be coming home to soon, I feel an almost overwhelming connection viscerally. That is as an American citizen tax payer and former military fellow I feel ownership to the present situation. I mean, I am paying for it and all but my issue is that unlike most of the avoidance culture here I cannot stop feeling how real it actually feels to be part of it. Yes, I do not like slinging words around that have no meaning or just fill my head with the illusion that God has a plan and everything is going to be fine as long I continue the perpetual mental technique of looking away and replacing what is really happening with an illusion ultimately created by the Corporate Agenda. According to the title of a New York Times article yesterday on page A12, 'The US', there's that us again, not an individual says that the incident that killed McClamrock and his fellow soldier will not deter the mission in Iraq, clearly the lengthy future continues.

Maybe there is no irony at all, only synchronicity and consequences. Seriously what are you thinking right now?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Eyes do have it...

When someone like Himalayan Photographer Jeff Botz bells you up after seeing the image that you made of your daughter's eye and leaves an emphatic message saying, "Bill, that picture is unf@*%ingbelievable", you know you may be onto something.

(click for big, her eye holds together when it is 7 inches across)
I have spent some time with this one, like I do often with others, but this one is different. The more I look at the details within it the more I realize that this may be the coolest picture I have ever made. This special image is inspiring me to make more close up eye shots and share them with the various subjects so that they can see themselves as I do, through their eyes.

My initial description:

Mein Schatz, my daughter's eyes are the color of the earth. Green, Brown and Blue are apparent on close inspection. They weren't at the beginning, they evolved in rotation over the 11 short years that have flown by since she was born. This image was made and edited by me. I was using yet another of Jeff's old professional manual Nikon lenses, a 1970 something macro 55mm on my newer digital body. This lens is real glass, not the modern synthetic which takes away from the final composition. Looking through it is like looking back in time. The only thing I changed in the digital tray is the focal black and white surrounding her iris and of course I made a slight contrast enhancement.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Pegasus Cloud/Thought of the Week

I made this image recently from up high with the manual 105mm.
There is a poem in every cloud as it moves across the sky, not my fault so I don't ask why. Pegasus, a lone winged horse with long mane in the wind flying towards the sun in a race it will never win. Dark canvass this mythological scene is set upon, in day not night the white horse cloud runs like a drift. Detail and size changing every second, expansion to the atmosphere as it moves further it starts to lift. Minutes pass rising higher until it pulls apart. I look back down towards earth as alone as the horse I just saw disappear into the sky, the only sound I hear, my beating heart.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day Eve Solo Urban Ride Report

Distance: 35miles or 56.3km. Time Riding: 2hrs 35mins. Bike: Surly Cream Roller fixed at 46 x 17. Total Inner Body/Crank Revolutions: around about 25,000.

Yesterday I pedaled roughly the distance between Brooklyn Connecticut and New London or Cedar Hills Oregon(just outside of Portland) and Idiotville. A big shout out to whatever is sparking that recent spike in traffic from the greater Portland area, must be some smart people up that way.

Anyways, my point for giving mileage comparison and contrast is so that you can see what little distance I actually rode yesterday. It was not that far but there was a lot of information to perceive during this self powered tour of southern Mecklenburg County, the greater Charlotte area. The first point of interest is that I made my way around south by linking up several Greenways, the first being McAlpine Park from one end to the other. On the paved section off of East Harris I noticed more riders rolling in each direction than I have ever seen there before. It was a strange sight indeed. As bike traffic thinned out a bit across Margaret Wallace I realized that someone was and had been on my wheel. My eyephone was streaming the National into my ears talking softly to my brain. I looked over my shoulder into the strained face of a geared hybrid aggressor wearing mirrored glasses and a lycra kit. Yikes, I had to get away so I picked it up a bit and headed for the left hand turn onto the bridge. He was right there with me on the bridge, is it possible that this guy is crazier than I am? Over the bridge I decided to make the 90 degree left hoping that crazy guy would be going the other way. When I turned from the cement floor to the dirt of the actual greenway my front 25mm skinny started washing out. I unclipped my left foot trying to hold it up motocross style, but I was going too fast. The bike tipped all the way and sent me super manning forward about to face plant in a head high cloud of dry dirt dust. My gloved hands went out in front of me to protect my face and some how I wound up motionless in the push up position a few inches off the ground only connected to the planet by the four points of my hands and shoe covered tip toes. The chase had hit his brakes when he saw the carnage and inquired as to my disposition as I pulled myself up from the floor. "I'm okay", I said with a grin picking up my bike and dusting myself off before riding away alone.
It is Labor Day weekend, time to have a reason to celebrate with the constant smell of grills being used in every neighborhood that I traversed. The American Banner was out of the attic or closet for display attached to the sides of many houses on this fine clear Sunday afternoon. Red, white and blue looking very clean and bright connected at an angle proudly as if actually owned by right. Such a strange sight indeed, the American Flag put out in such a prolific manner based on the holiday and three days in a row off of work.

Then it happened. I spotted one on the ground exactly where it laid in the grassy shadows of my cemetery cut through. This pennon was motionless but more telling to me than the many I had seen being displayed as ownership along my ride. It appeared to have been spit out the side of of a mower, the victim of a careless or oblivious or both mower operator tending to the cemetery grounds. I wondered why he did not notice it, and if he did, why didn't he do anything about it? Since being a small kid and then during my military tenure I had always been taught to respect the flag and all that it stands for. What does it really stand for, I thought to myself as I looked down at this broken one quietly alone on the surface of the earth. It looked sad to me, forgotten in the green field of human body decay.

I made some images of the flag where I had found it. Then I picked up the red, white and blue cloth truly noticing for the first time that it was ripped almost in two perfectly equal pieces being held together by a thread. The similar parallel synchronicity of the moment, this country's now that I was staring at in the real was a powerful feeling of understanding and recognition of the truth that had been delivered to me in the form of physical manifestation yet again. For me there is no wanting to look away or deny what I am actually feeling about our Nation's true strategy. Truly looking at what was left of this flag caused me to carefully fold the pieces and tuck it away in my pocket for its final transfer.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Friday Foster Fun Fest

Meet Sugar, the PB(stands for Pure Bred, not Peanut Butter like I thought it did) Chihuahua looking rather timid and cute with an uncanny resemblance to one of the characters of Littlest Pet Shop.
Sugar is property of the Humane Society of Charlotte. She has been under our Foster Care for the past week and has one more to go out here at the K9 estate. Ms. Arcen has taken special care of this little one who sleeps with her every night on the wall side of the bed. Amazingly enough this tiny dog has not wet or pooped the bed once since being here, instead she prefers to go outside with the big bluders. Sugar is sweet, quiet without a peep and through the night she sleeps without wetting the sheets. She needs a permanent home and someone to take care of her which will not take much considering she weighs less than a jar of pickles. This kid would look good in your big yellow hand bag.
AND-this is Reba, the PB Scottish Terrier. In the words of William Wallace with a full Scottish accent and all, "They may take her away from an abusive situation but they cannot take her beautiful smiling face and bright eyes." Reba as well is property of the Humane Society of Charlotte which is where she was returned to yesterday after a few weeks in the safe Foster Care of the Dillen Family. Reba is special because someone had been very mean to her and added stress in her life with physical and mental cruelty, something humans have become good at administering to those they want to control and feel superior towards without thinking about the consequences of their actions. Pride and ego are directly connected, so I digress. Anyhoo, Reba's light is obviously bright, her coat is as dark as night and hopefully for her sake a safe loving home and family is in sight.
If you can help with an adoption or reference for either one of these cutie patooties please make contact. At the least, please take a minute to forward my link with this info to your 'Friends'. The more the word spreads, the better chance these two will be found by their future family.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Uptown Minutes

Early in the morning last week time seems to slow down long enough to capture its meaning. The 100 block of North Tryon.

Here comes Willie in the red shirt, if you ask him for a dollar he may just give you one.