Friday, June 30, 2006


Total bummer, it looks like a few more cyclistst are being banned from racing in the tour this year including Ullrich and Basso. Looks like "dopers suck" is going to be heard a lot more for the next month. I guess in the end it'll be all good if people start racing clean but I'm bummed that the two that I was most looking forward to seeing in this year's tour won't be there.

Full article here and here.


Hmmm, not too much to write about these days. After my horrific result this past Sunday, I've decided to hang up my bikes and become a competitive eater. Ah, who am I kidding, it would be easier for me to give up breathing than it would be to give up riding. Riding has been at a premium recently though. For the past month Brynna has been going through a somewhat tough sleeping spell which has put the kaibosh (sp?) on my early morning rides which has meant that my ride hours and intensity have been way low which could partially explain this past weekends debacle. I expect her to snap out of it soon and I'll get back on track. Hopefully she does because I have two very tough races coming up. The first is at the Camden Snow Bowl and as I mentioned in an earlier post, we're adding a bunch of new climbing to the course so what was once a very tough race is going to be an uber tough race with close to 30 minutes of climbing at the beginning of each lap (4 total typically) and then some other small climbs thrown into the mix later on each lap. The second is an enduro at Bradbury State Park. As far as enduro's go it sort of short at 30+ miles but that still means at least 3 1/2 hours in the saddle so endurance will be key. So, as soon as sleep returns for Brynna I'll be hitting up the 3 hr 3am rides again. Can't wait! Yikes, I just realized I really can't wait until I can get up a 3 am again. What the f' is wrong with me???
A pic of the trail work on Tuesday. Loamy goodness.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Trail Day

Man, I thought by doing an actual cool down and spinning easily after Sunday’s race I had licked DOM’s (delayed onset muscle soreness) on this one but it turns out it was simply waiting an extra day to rear its ugly head.  To be clear, I fully expect to be sore for a few days after a hard race with the second day typically being the worst but I have never had a completely pain free Monday followed by a searingly painful Tuesday.  That’s exactly what I had yesterday, every time I moved the legs, my quads would burn (they began cramping on my final lap on Sunday).  Damnit!  Monday I felt so snappy on the bike on my commute home that what started out as an easy recovery ride turned into a massive TT effort getting me home in near-record time.  I guess that could have had something to do with my sore legs yesterday.  Oh well, I’d rather have sore legs after a race than to have the soft doughy legs of a couch potato.  

Last night I cruised into Camden to help out on a new section of trail at the Camden Snow Bowl.  The race course this year is going all of the way to the top of the mountain.  It should be about 30 minutes of switchbacking fun.  We managed to get a good portion of it cut last night but with less than three weeks before the race, time is getting tight.  I’m sure it’ll be done though, Mad Mike will be sure of that.  Hopefully folks will be able to get out on it before then so that it can get ridden in a bit and packed down, otherwise it’ll be a mighty brutal climb come race day.  Can anyone say hike-a-bike?

Monday, June 26, 2006

Single track bitch slap!

Time is short and I have a raging headache right now so I'll keep this short. Yesterday I got spanked galore during race number two for MMBA . That course always seems to give me trouble and this year was no different. I felt fine during most of the race but could never get into a groove. How can I describe that course? I know, its sort of like getting kicked in the junk...for 2 straight hours. There are some many granite chunks, large rocks, tight turns etc that it can be painfully hard to get your flow going. Those who figure it out can do well, those who don't (me) simply try to get through. MattyD royally kicked my ass as suspected and I met Tizzom briefly for the first time before the race start. I'm not sure where he finished because he quickly packed up and left after the race but he couldn't have been much worse off than me.

Time to lick my wounds.

Friday, June 23, 2006

She's back

For various reasons I haven't been able to ride for the last few days so I'm chalking this week up to yet another recovery week. I hope to get in a couple of quick rides in before this Sunday's race to open things up a bit but I'm not too worried, I expect the Dos to make up for any shortcomings I have during the race. If only it could...

Marcy on the other hand was able to do a partial commute home yesterday and in today. She's essentially been off of the bike for two years now so she's working her way back into it slowly. Two summers ago, while pre-riding for a race she fell and severed every ligament in her ankle. It was a totally heinous injury and she ended up being couch ridden for a couple of months and then had many months of brutal therapy to get back to near full mobility. Two years later and it still hurts her. Suckfest. Just when she was starting to get around again after the injury, I had the audacity to get her knocked up. She was able to ride lightly during the pregnancy but not enough to really consider it her comeback. Fast forward another year and she's finally ready to giver another go. Hopefully it goes well because some of my best rides ever have been with Marcy. I truly love riding with her.

Honking her way in this morning, pushing a massive gear to show off for the locals. Posted by Picasa

If you're looking to kill a few more minutes check out this post (ringy) by a former co-worker of mine. Its not bike related but it does involve a fingernail falling off and who doesn't want to read something like that. Funny shit.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Dos Niner review

Oh, Dos Niner, where have you been my whole life?

This past winter as I was trolling the Mountain Bike Review ( forums, I became infatuated with the whole 29’er movement.  Being a somewhat tall guy I thought this new format might suit me perfectly.  Conveniently, one of our team sponsors, Salsa, had one of the hottest 29’ers on the boards, the Dos Niner.  My curiosity was piqued and I started lusting for one myself.  I was sort of in the market for a new mountain bike anyway (I say “sort of” because my Trek Fuel was still in perfect working order and was serving me well but hey, it was time for something new) so the Dos became my new obsession.  

During my research, the main thing that concerned me was the relative lack of parts selection in a few key areas.  Most parts swap easily between a 26’er and a 29’er but rims, tires and forks are size specific and these three areas have a serious lack of selection available.  Fork choice was fairly easy for me.  Since SRAM is also a sponsor I went with the Reba Race.  Its heavier than the SID’s I’ve owned but oh so buttery smooth.  Rims and tires were another story though.  Thankfully, while I hemmed and hawed through the winter about the lack of selection, Salsa stepped up and started offering a new 29’er specific disc rim at a very nice weight and I decided to mate it with the Maxxis Ignitor tires which from what I had read were a very good all round tire.  They’re heavier than the Hutchinson Pythons I had previously been using but they’re one of the lighter 29’er tires available right now so my nod went to them.  Hopefully in the next year or two, as the 29’er movement gains some momentum, more manufacturers will step up with products but for now these are great choices.  With fork, rim and tire selection complete, the rest of the build was pretty easy using various SRAM, Truvativ and Avid products to round out the build.

After ordering the Dos frame I immediately began to wonder if I had made the right decision.  I know for a fact that I had gotten faster the moment I swung a leg over the Fuel so would I be taking a step back by losing the true full suspension?  Thankfully, my fears have been dispelled and I am in love with the Dos.  I had a bit of trouble during the initial set-up since I couldn’t simply transfer my tried and true measurements from my 26’ers to the Dos but after some initial blunders I now have it dialed in perfectly.

OK, enough background, on to the review of the Dos Niner itself.

When I picked up the box that the frame was packed in, I couldn’t help but think that I had been given an empty box because it was soooooo light.  When I checked inside, sure enough, there was a beautiful dark green scandium frame with some schnazzy pinstripping  (some people don’t like the pinstripping but I love it).  The cardboard box that the frame comes in is definitely heavier than the frame it contains.  That’s a good sign.

The paint is gorgeous and worth protecting so in the most scratch prone areas I installed Bonk! frame protector .  Unfortunately, before the new drivetrain went on, I got massive chainsuck a couple of time and munged up the chainstay a bit.  Damn-it all to hell!

The only two complaints that I heard about the ’05 Dos on MTBR were that there was minimal rear tire clearance and the standover clearance was a bit tight.  For ’06 Salsa fixed both of these issues but upping the tire clearance to allow for a 2.4” tire (which as far as I know doesn’t even exist yet for a 29’er) and by sloping the top tube and adding a diagonal brace to increase standover clearance.  In the 3-4 months that I’ve been riding the Dos, I haven’t had a problem with either.  In fact, the first race of the year was a major mud fest but the Ignitors were able to roll free the whole race.  

The ride of the Dos is something you really need to experience.  With only 1” of rear travel, you wouldn’t expect it to roll so smoothly or be so comfortable.  The Fuel has what I would consider a fairly plush ride (I’m sure most longer travel bike riders would argue this statement) and while I wouldn’t consider the Dos plush it is nearly as comfortable when rolling over the rough stuff.  In fact, the rougher the terrain, the happier the Dos is.  Roots and baby head rocks?  Bring ‘em on.  Ledgy shale?  Not a problem.  Because of a 29’ers angle of attack, they simply roll over this type of obstacle better.

This benefit does come with a slight price though.  Because of the wheel’s larger size, you end up with a heavier wheel package which slows acceleration.  The good news is that once up to speed, the wheels hold the speed well and tend to lose less momentum in the rough and in turns so you don’t end up needing to accelerate as often so the downfall is somewhat alleviated.

The only other downside for the bike is that the paint chips VERY easily when hit by small rocks.  This is actually an issue with most if not all Scandium frames though and has something to do with the metal’s ability to hold the paint.  By using the Bonk! frame protector though I shouldn’t have much to worry about though.

In the end, I feel that I’m faster on the Dos than I ever was on the Fuel.  The frame fits me better and because of its lack of pivots, is super easy to maintain which is a huge deal for a super busy and important person such as myself.

I give the Dos Niner 5 flaming noggins because if you’re cool, you have one, and if you’re not, you should.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

"cyclocross labia"!!!!!

la·bi·um ( P ) Pronunciation Key (lb-m)n. pl. la·bi·a (-b-)
Anatomy. Any of four folds of tissue of the female external genitalia.

Occasionally when I'm checking out my site meter stats for this blog I will check out the section that tells referralls, or how readers are guided to my blog. Most times its just the normal link from a few other blogs like Soiled Chamois, Bucket Republic, Ride Junkie etc but once in a while people will stumble on my site based on a google (or other search engine) search. Usually the word combinations make perfect sense for a cycling blog but once in a while the search really makes you wonder. Today for example, somebody did a google search for "cyclocross labia" for god knows what reason and my blog miraculously came up as the first match. WTF??? This begs many questions. Again, what the hell was this person really looking for, why in the world did I mention a labia on this blog and of course what does a cyclocross labia look like? I may have to research this further...

My little f'in pony!

No sooner had Jason and I joked about B-Girl liking something silly like my little pony (here) that Mimi-Jo busted this damn thing out while we were visiting recently. I should be careful what I say. I'm doomed! Posted by Picasa


Time is tight right now with work, baby stuff and a car being a bitch so here's a super short post.

The Clifford Park race is this weekend. I'm excited to see how the dos handles the techy course. Last year this course handed me my ass in a sling so hopefully this year I'll be able to return the favor. This dude will be there so I'll be able to measure myself against a Mount Snow podium-er.

Sunday I went to the Snow Bowl, location of race #3 for a pre-ride. Its a new route this year and I'm not sure of the layout yet so I just rode everything that I had time for. 2.5 hours of sweet-ass singletrack. The Dos man handled the trails there. I'm loving this thing more and more every day. Posted by Picasa

Monday, June 19, 2006

Friday night, Party!

What does a real man eat on a Friday night while wifey is out with a friend? Pizza and chips maybe? Burger and fries perhaps? Possibly some chinese? Well, I wouldn't know what a real man eats but I had sushi and a salad. I did man it up a bit with some Gritty's Vacationland Summer Ale. The sippy cup and mashed pees aren't mine, those belong to B-Girl.

Posted by Picasa


Thursday, June 15, 2006

pulling the plug

It looks like I'll be pulling the plug on going to Vermont this weekend. B-girl seems to be getting sick and a night alone with a sick baby is not something I want to inflict on Marcy. Plus, I screwed up and missed the deadline for on-line registration so I would need to be there earlier than I had planned on Saturday which totally f's up our plans for the day since we had a couple of parties to go to. Damn-it all to hell. In the end, its probably for the best since I'll be able to spend some time with the fam on father's day and they can shower me with love and gifts!

Shake down

I took the pooch and the Carver for a shake down ride this morning to get used to the rig for this weekends race at Mount Snow and to be sure the ss gearing was ok. I was concerned that the gearing at 32/16 would be a bit too high for a hilly race and this morning's ride confirmed that it is indeed too high (for me at least). So, this afternoon I'll have to pop into Bikeman so they can throw an 18t freewheel on there since I don't have the tools to do so myself. Overall, the bike felt pretty good but I do think I'll be changing out the rubber. Its rolling with exiwolfs which have nice traction and cush but totally suck for climbing since they weigh about 14lbs each. A front ignitor and a rear python should do the trick for this weekend.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

breath, breath

Phew, what a crazy freaking couple of days. Developers can be a royal PITA! Everything needs to be done yesterday. I just pulled a 10,000 sf clubhouse out of my ass this morning and it hurts I tell ya. No amount of Assos cream is gonna make that feel better. Thats a funny name for a chamois cream, Assos. Anyway that shit is out the door (to the renderers to get all purtied up) and I can breath easy for a couple of minutes.

Sort of a lame-ass drawing but what do you expect for a 10 minute sketch???
I've just confirmed that I will be going to Mount Snow this weekend to contest the single speed race Sunday morning. Davis Carver is kindly allowing me to ride one of his demo Carver's for the race. I got to test ride this same exact bike late this past winter and I'm psyched to be able to try a race on it. There is lots o' climbing at Mount Snow though so I'm not so sure how I'll do with a single speed but there is only one way to find out. I predict much suffering.
I'll be crashing with MattyD and LT Steve a mile or so from the venue. Its a load off my mind to no longer have to worry about where I'm going to stay but I think Matt has alterior motives. See, Matt is knee high to a newt's nutsack and about a buck-10 soaking wet so he tends to get cold easily. So my guess is that he hopes to make a MattyD sammich between myself and LT Steve to keep nice and warm Saturday night. Dirty little bastard. Let it be known that I do not plan to spoon with either of those two. Unless they ask nicely of course.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Out with the old and in with the new

I ordered some new SIDI D 5's the other day to replace my soon to be sole-less D 4's. In the meantime I had to figure out how to keep the sole on long enough to get the new kicks since size 46 narrows aren't a stock item for Mr. Bikeman. I came up with what I believe to be a pretty creative solution. I know from experience that simply wrapping the toe with duct tape doesn't work well because as soon as you hike-a-bike a bit, it gets chewed up and falls of and with the amount of much around these days, mucky hike-a-bikes happen a lot. I also knew that glue wouldn't work since the area between the sole and shoe is completely crammed full of trail debris so getting it clean enough for glue to hold would be one hell of an ordeal. Finally, I decided to pop rivet it together. You heard me right. To do it, I pulled the insole out, drilled a hole through the sole and shoe bottom and fastened it all together with a rivet. The end of the sole is still exposed and flapping a bit but at least this method keeps the rest of the sole from pulling off. Pretty dang smart aint I? Posted by Picasa

I also pickep up a pair of flip-flops. Big f'in deal you say? Well, at the ripe old age of 31, this is exactly the first pair of flip-flops I've ever had and let me tell you, I've been waiting for these my whole life. They're like wearing a pair of nice, warm, cushy croissants. Lovin em.
Sorry about the pic of my feet.

Monday, June 12, 2006

The weekend

Had a bit of a pisser of a weekend. I had planned on going down to the South Shore of Boston on Saturday night, do a ride with teammate John Burns and then go to NEMBA Fest on Sunday where I was going to do some more riding at Wompy State Park and then to my bro's place for more, you guessed it, riding Sunday afternoon. With all of the rain though, NEMBA Fest was cancelled because the venue was underwater so I ended up baging the whole trip. I figured I might as well wait unit it dries out a bit and go down when the trails are in decent shape instead of slogging through the mud.

The rain ended up being a blessing in disguise though because I was able to spend a bunch of time with B-Girl and Marcy this weekend instead. Brynna is changing so quickly these days that if I miss a single day, I risk missing something really cool.

Since Marcy spends so much time watching Brynna while I'm off riding, I decided to return the favor on Saturday and I watched B-Girl all morning while Marcy went off and did her thing for a few hours. B-Girl and I got some one-on-one time and Marcy got some much needed time away so all was good.

Sunday was spent visiting the in-laws so I saddled up the road steed and put in a 2 hr, 35 mile ride and met Marcy there. While there, we enjoyed some brews and some wine and witnessed Brynna's mad desire to crawl into the lake. Marcy had all that she could do to keep the 9 month old from diving right into the water. I guess the swimming lessons are paying off because she certainly seemed comfortable in the water even though it was damn cold.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

The Ferninator!

On my continued quest to get the pooch into shape, I dragged his ass out of the house with me this morning at 4:20 to go for a mountain bike ride. Time constraints don’t allow for evening rides right now so an early morning trail session was in order. Because of the rain that we’ve had for the last few weeks, I hadn’t been to the Zak Preserve trails in a while so I decided to go there. The trails were in decent shape water wise but it was apparent that the trail hasn’t been used much recently especially near the far end because ferns were beginning to overtake some of the trail. The trails there are freaking narrow enough without those suckers choking it down even more so I found myself on a fern crushing spree. Whenever possible, if a new cute little adorable baby fern was beginning to show its chubby little cheeks on the trail I would deftly run it down and smash it into oblivion. Take that you defenseless forest creature, that’ll teach you for living. Little bastards.

Die you dirty little son of a bitch!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

testicle tuesday

I did the commute to work thang this morning. Rose at 4 f’in am and hit the road at 4 f’in 25. It was a decent ride but the legs just weren’t feeling it so I ended up taking it fairly easy ringing in at 2 hours on the nose and 33 miles. I was able to check out some potential new land acquisitions for a future new house though. I rode through a few very nice areas along the Sheepscot river that have some serious potential, sort of topping out at the max of our price range but what do I expect? Being an architect, I can’t simply snap up the first available lot. Noooooooo, I need to agonize over it for weeks, nay, months until the perfect thing is available. Hopefully the site I spied this morning turns out to be better than the last couple Marcy and I checked out. Exciting stuff, huh?

No ride planned tonight but I hope to get another road or mtb ride in tomorrow morning if the weather stays good.

I was reading all of the Mohican 100 reports by Jason, Jeff and Andy and despite the fact that it sounds like each and every one of them suffered like dogs, reading them made me really want to tackle a long marathon myself soon. Maybe next year I can work one into my schedule. Maybe the Wilderness 101 or something. I guess I’ve got plenty of time to chew on it.

Edit: I was just on IF's website reading anothe Mohican 100 post and got this funny as hell quote: "I really thought that the singletrack would take me all the way back, no dice,the course spit me out onto the road, down a flat, muddy fire road and then up to the dam. It was like a quarter mile run up the steepest stairs possible to the top of the thing...bastards. Why didn't they just hire some hillbillies to stuff us all into glad bags and beat us with axe handles? Then it was another road climb, a really easy to miss turn back into the resort, and one final kick in the jewels, a slog up through the muddy path to the campgrounds and up the steep, slimy grass hill to the finish."

Funny Stuff, wish I could remember whose race report it belonged to...

Monday, June 05, 2006


As I was browsing through the hair removal section of the local Rite Aid this weekend (it has just occured to me that I think a bit too much about hair removal now) I happened to notice a product called Nad's for hair removal. I thought this was an interesting name for a hair removal product so this morning I went to their website and found out they have Nad's For Men. Fricking sweet! I can finally get myself some nads.

Based on some reviews online, I wouldn't use it on my nads though. "It removed no hair, but caused irritation and redness."

The aftermath

Hmmmm, how to follow up on such a wickedly popular post... I guess I'll do it by not talking about riding! Sounds like a good idea, huh? I really didn't do any riding this weekend for a couple of reasons. Reason number one is I have a serious honey-do list to work on and two it rained like hell all weekend so it made sense to deal with reason #1. My main project for the weekend was to pour the concrete countertop for the bathroom. I've been slowly making the form for it for over a month so it was about freakin time I actually did the pour. It went pretty smoothly and you can see the initial results at DAMNelsons. In the end it should look pretty sweet, sort of like marble but with lots more options as far as finish goes. I also built a wall cap for the half wall hiding the crapper but no pics of that.

The weather is looking pretty decent for this week so hopefully I'll get some riding in but as soon as the sun shows its face, we'll be finishing up the exterior painting since our house is looking a bit bi-polar right now.

Yesterday, I was down in the bike room with brynna for a few minutes and realized how good of a job I've done babyproofing that space. Man what a shithole! I'm not sure this room could ever be saved. I think I'd better schedule a visit from the renovation fairy for this place soon.

NEMBAfest is this weekend down in Mass and it also happens to be my brother's birthday so I might be making the trek down there for some riding on Sunday. Jeff W., are you going to be there? Seems like its right in your neck of the woods.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

How to shave like a man!

Start with two hairy-ass legs.
and a razor with lots of extra blades.
Have at it for about 1/2 hr with wife looking on and laughing at your elementary technique. Remember, short strokes and rinse the razor often.
Half way there. I thought about leaving it like this just for the wtf??? factor.
Check to be sure that you're getting shaving cream on the walls OUTSIDE of the tub. Check.

The finished product. Sexy huh?

Last but not least, be sure to leave a nasty, hairy mess in the tub for wifey to discover.