Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Split board

We did a little more backcountry riding last weekend, but this time I used a split board.  A split board is a snowboard that separates in half so that you can wear the pieces like skis and glide up the mountain (with the help of climbing skins).  The jury is still out for me on the board vs. skis in the backcountry.  We did a fun run through a wide open bowl, and the board rocked, but as soon as I got into the trees I wasn't going fast enough to stay on top of the powder and it was really difficult to keep moving.  It was also a bit of a pain to assemble the board, but maybe there are better models out there to try.  christinelh has some pictures on her journal.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Saturday, March 19, 2005

The end is near

I'm leaving Savannah today...eventually. Our flight isn't until 7PM, but we got to airport around noon to try and flky stanby on an earlier flight. Everyone is making a mass exodus from here after the St. Patty's day partying so all the flights are full. The Savannah airport isn't a real interesting place to spend 7 hours, but at least I have internet access.
Today was actually really nice (for the first time since the day we arrived), so I rode my bike downtown while my coworker drove out to see the sunrise on the beach. It was a nice relaxing ride with light traffic and I stopped frequently to enjoy to the sights. After my ride I packed up my bike (it packed much easier than the first time), and dropped some packages off at FedEx before heading to the airport. I think I'm due to arrive in Denver around 11:30PM.

Here I am after my jaunt in the rain.

Here's a couple of pictures of a fountain in one of the many town parks

The famous cobbles of Paris-Roubaix....okay, maybe not. This was near the river.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

My prison

For reasons that I have yet to understand, there's a BIG St. Patty's day parade and festival in Savannah. The site I'm working at is closed for the "holiday" so we were originally told that we wouldn't be able to come in and work. The person we're dealing with, however, made a deal with us: We could work today (a shortened schedule of 10AM - 6PM instead of the usual 8AM - 7PM) as long as we could be out by Friday at noon. So here we are today, and you can see how much I'm working based on my journal. (In all fairness, I am getting a lot of work done, but it's the kind of work where I have to start a bunch of tests and wait for a bit, so I have a few minutes here and there that are good for nothing but this type of stuff.)

This place is locked down like a prison. Seriously. Security had to come over from another site (the customer's stuff is spread out throughout town) to unlock the doors. Then they left and LOCKED THE DOORS. To unlock the door (from the inside or the outside) you need a key. I haven't explored yet to see where the fire exit is, but this really doesn't seem like the smartest way to secure a building. I understand there are a lot of computers in here, but this is pretty stupid. We had another person coming by to deliver parts to us, and we had to give him so lunch orders so he could bring us some food before security came to let him in. I'm pretty sure I could throw a chair through the front glass door if I needed to. (And I kind of hope I do.)

Bike rides in Savannah

I got up bright and early Tuesday morning, and went out to brave the streets. It was really depressing to look down at my cycling computer and see that it was still set to mountain time, and that my 6:30 AM ride was more like 4:30 AM to my body. There's really no shoulder on most roads, so I just had to count on people driving around me. In Colorado I don't think anything of it because there are so many cyclists but around here I was a little concerned that people would be jerks. For the most part, people gave me some space, except for the occasional car that didn't have much choice but to drive close to me. I did find one bike lane, and it last for about 100 yards before it disappeared without a trace.

Eventually I came up to park with a paved path around a pond, so I did laps around the lake until my coworker gave me a call to discuss our plans for the morning. I started riding back to the hotel at that point, figuring that I could easily make it back in 15-20 minutes, but I had gotten a little turned around. I headed in the direction that I perceived to be correct, and it was for a while. Then I saw a street that I knew ran behind the hotel, so I turned on it...the wrong way. I ended up riding about 4 miles in the opposite direction from the hotel before I decided that I had no clue where I was. I called up my coworker and had him punch my cross-streets into our rental car's GPS and come get me. I would have ridden home, but then we would have been even later getting to the customer site than we had planned. We ended up only being 30 minutes late, but it still sucked.

I was really hoping to get in some more riding in Savannah than I have, but the weather has been cool and rainy. It's not really as cold as Colorado, but I've felt so chilled sometimes (because of the moisture I guess). Today, we couldn't get in the customer site until 10AM, so I got up and 7 and headed out for a ride. It was still a bit chilly and I found myself wishing I would have brought some warmer clothing, but I survived and rode for a little over an hour. At one point it seemed like I was out in the middle of nowhere, and I wondered if I made a wrong turn again. But I felt pretty confident and eventually ended up back in civilization. About a mile or two from the hotel it started to rain. I'm glad I didn't have to ride in it too long, because it was kind of chilly.

The great thing about hotels is that they have lots of towels that I can use to wipe the wet road grime off my bike. :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Long list of updates

I've been traveling, so I've fallen behind on updating my journal. My apologies to my legions of fans. (You should probably not read all this crap until you're ready for bed. It's going to be quite long and dull.)

Saturday March 12 - Team ride
Today was a team practice at an office park in Greeley that will be the location for a criterium race in another month.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

From Craigslist

I never quite figured out why the sexual urge of men and women differ so
much. And I never have figured out the whole Venus and Mars thing. I have
never figured out why men think with their head and women with their heart.

FOR EXAMPLE: One evening last week, my girlfriend and I were getting into

Well, the passion starts to heat up, and she eventually says "I don't feel
like it, I just want you to hold me."

I said "WHAT??!! What was that?!"

So she says the words that every boyfriend on the planet dreads to hear...
"You're just not in touch with my emotional needs as a woman enough for me
to satisfy your physical needs as a man." She responded to my puzzled look
by saying, "Can't you just love me for who I am and not what I do for you in
the bedroom?"

Realizing that nothing was going to happen that night, I went to sleep.

The very next day I opted to take the day off of work to spend time with
her. We went out to a nice lunch and then went shopping at a big, big
unnamed department store. I walked around with her while she tried on
several different very expensive outfits. She couldn't decide which one to
take so I told her we'd just buy them all. She wanted new shoes to
compliment her new clothes, so I said lets get a pair for each outfit. We
went onto the jewelry department where she picked out a pair of diamond
earrings. Let me tell you...she was so excited. She must have thought I was
one wave short of a shipwreck. I started to think she was testing me because
she asked for a tennis bracelet when she doesn't even know how to play
tennis. I think I threw her for a loop when I said, "That's fine, honey."
She was almost nearing sexual satisfaction from all of the excitement.
Smiling with excited anticipation she finally said, "I think this is all
dear, let's go to the cashier."

I could hardly contain myself when I blurted out, "No honey, I don't feel
like it."

Her face just went completely blank as her jaw dropped with a baffled

I then said "honey! I just want you to HOLD this stuff for a while. You're
just not in touch with my financial needs as a man enough for me to satisfy
your shopping needs as a woman." And just when she had this look like she
was going to kill me, I added, "Why can't you just love me for who I am and
not for the things I buy you?"

Apparently I'm not having sex tonight either.

Wednesday, March 9, 2005

Address change

In case anyone needs to mail anything to Christine, her new address is 644 Kim Dr, FoCo CO.

Tuesday, March 8, 2005

How to fold a shirt

This has apparently been floating around the web for a while and as usual I am behind the curve.  It's still pretty cool.

Check out the video:
If you don't have a DivX codec installed, you can check out the flash version:

And here are some instructions:

Sunday, March 6, 2005

The first race

I went down to Lakewood today for the first race of my soon to be world famous career. It was quite intimidating to see all those people there looking really serious about racing with all their team gear and stationary trainers to warm up on, and there I was with my non-descript shorts and jersey. After my warmup and final pre-race pee, Christine got there just in time to see the fear in my eyes as I wheeled up to the packed starting area. I'm not sure how many people lined up on the start line, but I'm guess 50+.

As expected, the race was fast. VERY fast. For the first 10 minutes or so I managed to stick with the main pack, but eventually I just had to drop off the back or risk passing out from exhaustion in the first half of the race. It wasn't until I fell off the back of the peloton that I took a look at my cycling computer to check my speed. Coming down the front stretch I was doing 27 MPH (by myself) so we must have been doing at least 30 in the pack. No wonder my hear rate monitor was pushing 190.
The back stretch of the course had a hefty wind, which really sucked when you weren't surrounded by people to block the wind. About a half hour into the race I was getting passed by a group of people when tragedy struck. I gave up the optimal line for the upcoming corner, but someone still passed me on the right. At the same time, another rider passed me on the left and a gust of wind came and pushed his rear tire into my front tire. (At least that's what I think happened, because I'm in denial that someone would pass me by half a bike length and try to get in front of me.) We clashed and I managed to stay up for a bit, but eventually I went down. I got a foot out of my cleat and slid on my metal cleat bottoms briefly, then I landed on my left cheek and slid for a little bit more. I thought about just riding back to the start and ending my race, but I really felt like I needed to finish my first race. It was a little painful, but I finished.
Spandex is some amazing stuff. For as much as I slid, you can't see so much as a scuff on my shorts. I do, however, have a strawberry the size of an orange (ha!) on my ass. I think my bike is okay (I haven't examined it too closely though), because I managed to land mostly on my ass. I scraped up my shifter and my pedal and rear skewer, but all that stuff was scraped up already, so I'm not to concerned.
So, to summarize, my first race ever: CRASH. Better luck next time. :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2005

Eye Test

Have you ever seen those images on a web site that are used to make sure that an actual human (and not a computer program) is trying to access a site?  Check out this one below that popped up when I was trying to send an email on Hotmail this morning.

Can you tell what the heck the right answer is?

I had to click the link that plays a sound file of a (crappy) voice reading the text in order to know what the right answer was.  I guess it must be pretty secure if even a human can hardly tell what the text says.