Saturday, December 29, 2007

Friday, December 28, 2007

Tony walking it Uptown on the square

Yesterday in Uptown Charlotte I met this local BMX'er named Tony from the Hidden Valley neighborhood of the Queen City that knows how to 'walk it' down Tyrone St. He pulled it up on the square going north and held it for a bit longer than half of the block, which to me seems like something seeing his wheels are so small. I asked him if he would do it again for me so that I may film his skill and post it, he obliged. After the above shot was made Tony came around to see a preview when 2 of CMPD's finest came over and gave him a light ball bustin for as they put it "doing wheelies" on the square. I immediately told these officers of law that I was the one who encouraged him to show off his talent for the camera and fortunately the situation was defused and neither one of us got tazed. Imagine that, a wheelie on Tryone is a problem but being a moron is not. I love being a moron, it is legal.

Thursday, December 27, 2007


Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know neither one of us has not a helmet on one and we are doing a double stacked handless track stand on the asphalt. We had practiced doing circles with child on back and climbing up for like a month in the evening then on this night we decided to go for it. There were circus noises(classic big ring music) in the background and the occasional wife commentary along the lines of, "That does not look like such a good idea." Don't worry this is not only a good idea it is a great one, please go get the camera and take a picture of us to document this momentous occasion that our child will remember long after I'm gone and my blog stops. After this photo was snapped we turned into a big wide circle and Ms Arcen started her down climb off of my shoulders around under my left arm which I used to grab her while still rolling and deposit her 45lb self safely to the ground to the cheers of the crowd.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Day/Beaty the non boring way.

Once again another holiday arrives and I am bestowed with the gift of time to go out on a bicycle ride alone. I had 4 hours from noon to be back so I decided to take off on my fixed gear Lemond Filmore with a water bottle, small flat kit, 10 In God We Trust Units, ID and a phone. I rode out of Dooleyville and hit Idlewild extension for East Harris to Idlewild then that funny development behind the Food Lion that leads me down into the Mcalpine Park Greenway. I traversed the Greenway all the way to Sardis only seeing one other pair of riders who wished me a Merry Christmas. I took Sardis up to HWY 51, went left there, then right onto Fullwood which is a sneaky way to get to Weddington Rd that I learned on the weekly Ultimate road ride out of Mathews. Weddington, split right over 485 up to and across McGee Rd for Francis Beaty mountain bike park even though I was riding my work bike with skinnies. As soon as I got there I topped off my water bottle and then started around the course backwards. It was jittery going with 110lbs pressure on the 25's. I kept thinking the entire way around that I promised myself I would never ride trails on 30 dollar work tires again. The Continental Gatorskin is my favorite work tire for the past three generations, it lasts forever as long as you don't take them in the trail which I already learned but was presently unlearning as I watched the front thread through the poky rocks.
Out of the trail, refill bottle, and exit the park left onto Weddington, Left on to McGee towards Tilley Morris where I merged righty and soon crossed Providence Rd. Now I was south of the city on Ballentoon Commons Blvd headed for Rea Rd where I made a right. Next was Colony, a bike lane for a little while then congestion and a familiar sight from Ilan's best idea ever. I hit Selwyn, looked into an empty shop window and then dove down behind the shop for the Little Sugar Creek Greenway which ran me to Freedom Park where I came up behind the original Charlotte messenger riding a long board next to his 283. I stopped and chatted with the two of them for a few minutes and then kept on for Moorehead to Hensley Rd, then up to left on Queens, right on Colonial up to Caswell. In front of the hospital I was passed by a big car then the passenger in the back seat yelled out, "Hi Bill!" It was Andrea who is a Nova original and I had not seen her in a year or so. How funny, she was on her way to visit a sick relative and I was just out there and our paths converged. I got up to Commonwealth off of Caswell/Pecan and did the normal commute East side stay alive home from there. I walked in the door 3hrs and 25minutes after I had left and was feeling great.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Classic Laurel-Pilot, to Slate Rock Inner

Here is the view from Slate rock. Dicky, Ryan and I discussing the pros and cons of harnessing power from nuclear fission vs. fusion.
Those are not footprints in the cement at our feet on top of Slate Rock they are actually formed by erosion from both water and wind.

Can't wait to see if a fork is in my destiny.

Yesterday even though those with degrees in meteorology and corporate salaries were saying it was gonna be a bad day for a ride in the NC Mountains three days ago Rich, Ryan and I headed out to meet Eric at the Laurel Mtn trail head anyway. It was raining on the entire 230.04km drive as it had through the night all the way until we started climb up Laurel. By the time we were on the 2,000$ climb I could see crystal blue skies above the landmass in front of us and through the trees. Descending Pilot was a blast, especially following Eric(who provided us with all the above images.) through the Hum V section on the lower. When we entered in the line was completely under fresh flowing, crystal clear rain water being pulled downward like a defacto stream through this lumpy section which is hard enough to ride dry. Eric kept his momentum up which encouraged me to do the same and it was like riding in a mini fast moving Black Wells creek. No slippage, the traction stayed there and then we were through both tickled at this small happening on this trail ride day. Lefty onto the inner connector and then right to go up left on Slate the steep version where the view was clear and blue. We descended down to 1206 and climbed a shorty up to the car to get home right at sundown on my end.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Pastoral Christmas Interview with a kid and a dog.

Here is Mein Shatz and I at a local hiding spot.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Courier Christmas Party Report

Last night was the courier Christmas Party after work happy hour style at the Rue De Grit. There was no food but some good tasty vegan approved beer as well as some of Mexico's finest shwag beer. This party was so hot that I did not even take pictures which would have distracted me from all the fun. Josh shared his latest comic art of The Denver Nugget and I laughed like I have had nothing to laugh about for the past three years. Collin was in town so he dropped by as well as Jordy and if you count the fact that the Lady courier stopped in for 7 minutes three couriers actually made it. If you did not make it last night , don't worry you did not miss anything. Wow, I am already counting down till next years party, can't wait!

Big Rick my Dad, provided me with the above image which he took of me I dunno, like a million years ago in or around 1975 or 76. It is an interesting image for me on lots of levels that I wanted to share with you. I of course do not remember him taking the picture but I do remember some of that day in these little memory vignettes. Our little family was outside a lot, there was a walking path lined with tall trees and animals to pet in certain sections of this park in Vermont. There was a train line that came through the property and nothing seemed as weird and over crowded as it does now. Winter in New England was a great place to be a kid 30 years ago for sure. Anyways for what ever you believe, Happy Holiday and New Year.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Ground Score times 4

Monday morning I left the barn at around 0745hrs and the temp was 26F with crystal clear skies, the one day a year it happens here in the QC. The connection from the neighborhood to the main East Side Stay Alive was silent as it held hands with me in the morning frost. Out into the traffic north down Lawyers and then east on the Albermarlean travers to a light glowing red at the first major intersection of the day. While straddling me Lemond waiting for the change of photon energy I noticed some colors other than grey in the debris field. The debris field is that wedge of matter that collects at intersections everywhere else in the QC other than the ones uptown because they are swept daily by a maniac driving a big sweeper truck paid for by the bank. The debris field is usually filled with things like grit butts, lug nuts, broken pieces of chincy car parts, a random child's shoe, dry wall screws, little shards of metal and the like. Today though there was color in the center of the wedge which moved me to further inspect. I found 4 bungee cords in one pick up, it was as lucky as catching 4 trout on one line. After I scooped them up and crossed the intersection I took the above picture of my catch. It was the most exciting day so far this week, 4 colorful bungees.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Tab, mas fotografias JOKKMOKK

Yes, there was a sign along the road. Then there was this info that I never knew.

Chundery double track, photoJM
Fresh out of the Lulla Sulla Lava, I don't eat fish, ever.

Me down by the river. Photo(lady who caught the fish)

Swedish sky, high up on the globe.

That's right young Abe, that is a White paper Bark Birch.

Abe crossing the weir, click to see scale.

Abe at the end of the double tracks, click for scale.

They were everywhere~

Early morning life.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Cracked out in Jokkmokk

The phrase 'cracked out' is not an accurate literal description of my physical status at this point in my life(I have never used crack, ever). I use the two words together to descriptively over state with QC slang what it feels like to be alive and paying attention to what is going on around me in this cracked out world. A perfect example of cracked out could be used to describe the above look on Jordy's face minutes after arriving in downtown Jokkmokk Sweden above the arctic circle after a MACH 6 voyage from the jar through Stockholm and points north some ass load of kilometers. I was sort of looking similar. I mean how could I not have, just a few hundred km south of here I had witnessed the Aurora Borealis stretching from the northern horizon of my perception in white vertical beams upwards into and against the ever expanding black cosmos. Plus our Euro transfers were weighing heavily on our minds.

The magnetic pull of being connected to the landscape felt dense and slow here above the Polcirkeln. The air quality was not only cleaner than anything I have ever tasted here in the great ole USA but it was also visually crystal clear, saturated in colors and completely free of atmospheric haze. A few minutes after this picture was taken our Austrian ex patriot host brought us out some lingdenberry and reindeer pizza with fresh cold beer. The hand rolled doughy purple meaty thing was amazing and put life into our human forms. After the arctic pizza we took out the bikes, built them on the side walk and headed out for an overland SS cycling adventure into bear territory. Jordy and I followed some chundery double track north out of town to the river Lulla Sulla Lava which supplies Jokkmokk with it's drinking water. We crossed a weir and then back into the woods again along the northern edge of the river. Soon we found ourselves across another bridge and on hard packed fire road as the very twisty river widened before us. The evergreens were very dense in all directions as far as you could see which gave the air a pine filtered smell. The land was flat with an occasional roller which seemed to gain very little altitude but was drawn out long enough to give good vistas of this polar landscape.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Ghost of Jerry Reed, this is for you pal!

A closer look at the QC dummy. Rookie Friday went great yesterday. Seeing I let my lock stop functioning and had worked myself into no back up I went ahead with the movie approved plan to take the wheel off on each trip into the building, which I never remember doing before, okay maybe once as a rookie. What a joy was the day where I gave those random souls in the elevator yet another excuse to ask me questions. So, that looks like an expensive wheel, is it? What, afraid someone is gonna steal your bike? Do you take your wheel off normally, I never have seen you with it before? Where is the rest of your bike(hahahha)? Is that wheel heavy? My favorite of the day came giggling at me on my last job in the early afternoon while I was in the extra small elevator of 212 South Tyrone(that's right Tyrone). Myself and two successful young professional females smiling big and the taller one with the 32oz Styrofoam drink cup could not resist. She cheerily said, "Nice yellow tire. What happens if you come out and the rest of your bike is gone, can you just ride the wheel?" Whoa, her wit exceeded her height.

Friday, December 14, 2007

My lock is broken

Yesterday my lock started acting funny, like there was a delay in the physical unlocking of the mechanism. By the afternoon I was using a little jiggling technique that seemed to work well enough to get through the day. Last night I took the lock out to my barn for a little cleaning and lubrication. The problem only got worse and within a half hour I had rendered this 3 year old piece of equipment useless. Even with brand new keys there was no opening it. Seeing I would not be able to get to until sometime later in the work day I decided to put the road wheel with quick release onto the fixy and pull the wheel every time I go into a building. This sounds so half assed and rookie at the same time. I should have a back up but I let my kid play with it 2 years ago and she has no clue where it wound up. If you see my Lemond without a wheel and locked to nothing today please don't steal it.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Tacit Charlotte Imagery

Click to make big for further reflection