Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Useless Commuting Stastics

Today, August 29, 2007

Bike: 1999 Trek 520
Route: Yarmouth to Portland via Middle Road
Distance: 14.24 miles
Ride Time: 47 mins. 24 seconds
Avg. Speed: 18.0
Max Speed: 29.0

Carrying: tool kit, trunk bag with lunch and misc., pannier bad with clothes and sandals.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Slingshot Thought of the Day

I was reading a story the other day about the recent conclusion of the scientific experiment to replicate living on Mars. This group of scientists just completed 4 months living in a 'replica' space habitat, conducting experiments, learning how to live with each other in cramped quarters etc. They were studying stuff (permafrost and global warming) but that is not my Slingshot Thought.

The ST is:
Why is this experiment even being done? We have years and years of information related to a mass of people living in an isolated and cramped environment. Its called a SUBMARINE.
This idea then sprung forth a solution, perhaps, of getting humans to Mars. NASA is caught up in using pilots and air force personnel. Why not look to the Navy and use sub-mariners. They are trained and acclimated to life in a small vessel with a large task load.

According to a web site I found:
" The living conditions on board a submarine are extreme, to be sure. For example: 110 men must share two showers, four toilets, one urinal.
Personal space is limited to the bunk, which measures six feet by two feet, for a total of 12 square feet. In contrast, the prisoners at Warden Penitentiary in Washington, D.C., are allowed 90 square feet of personal living space."

So there you have it. What would appear to be an example of scientists not thinking through a solution to a problem then plow ahead with re-inventing the wheel.

*rolling eyes* Academics.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Got Milk?

During lunch time recently my 'high-noon journey' around the streets of Portland led me to one of my usual sit-n-watch spots at Tommy's Park.

"Well then, what do I see here?" I think strolling down the uneven brick sidewalk.
"Wanna free milk?" from a young woman in a light blue shirt.
"Why...YES I DO!" I proclaim.

I drank. It was yummy.

It was my lucky day. The 'Got Milk?' people were giving out free samples and taking 'milk moustache' photos. I wandered over to this little set up and ask the guy if i can get a copy emailed to me? He then showed me what you do get. A print copy which has web directions for viewing and download. I can go with that. So I get handed a little cup with a the secret 'milk moustache' recipe .

"The best way is to just put your lip in it and tip it back."
"Can I do a 'Hogan' 'stace?" I ask.

Guy then looks at me oddly as I just tip is back over my face. Dripping down either sides of my chin I say "Howz it?".

Guy takes picture.
Then hands me a napkin and told me to wipe the middle out.
So I did. There's the result -------------------->

I cropped the image a bit but NOTICE MY SWEET 'Hogan' MOUSTACHE. The milk was good. Too bad it wasn't really Cheryl Crow. "Hey baby! Yeah that's right...i ride a bike." ;)

Monday, August 20, 2007

Slingshot Thought -blog types-

Is it just me or are there more blogs about blogging blogs than there are actual interesting blogs to read? Which has led me to create a list. It seems that at some point, all blogging assholes end up making some kind of list. So here is mine:

Annoying Blogs

1)blogging blogs
2) marketing blogs
3)make money blogs. which is usually blogging about blogging, attaching links and blogging about making links. can you say "fuckiiiinng booooriiiinng"?
4)sell shit blogs.

Good Blogs

1)tech blogs
2)science blogs
3)personal blogs
4)blogs that actually pass information and ideas.

I had grandiose plans to make this post really interesting, add links etc., but I lost my steam. Whatever, my point stands.

Lobby Rolls

I finally got the pics of the lobster rolls we made after that killah pahty. With 6 bugs we made 6 rolls. To say these were delicious would be a drastic understatement. I think I went into a lobster induced coma (my favorite kind) after chowing down. There are only 3.5 pictured here. I was feverishly plowing my first and half way through wife reminded me to snap a pic. *with mouth stuffed, mmm meezeah ah 'ood. mmm swallow, yeah picture-good call**

I probably would have ate them all if she didnt remind me. Then I'd have said to my self, 'shit, that'd had made a blogpost.' Well, luckily for the they are.

Recipe available upon request.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

MS Thanks

I just wanted to thank two of my readers who donated to my MS bike ride back during the beginning of the month. MzMik and Mard.

They are both good people and I thank you both.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Killah Pahty!

Wife and I drove down to York in what turned out to be a wicked sweet party Saturday. Our friend just got engaged and a party they were planning turned into an engagement celebration. Well sort of, no gifts were exchanged, it was in the woods (literately) and no special atire was required.

Girl is getting married to a fisherman. I hear you asking: "GeologyJoe, what was there for food and drink?"

Well, 50 pounds of steamers (clams, for those of you from away). 200 pounds of lobster. 2 kegs of beer. 6 large coolers of juice, soda and bottled beer. Deserts, hot dogs, hamburgers and standard grill-fare.

So we played a little horseshoes. drank some beers, ate a couple of lobsters, shot the shit with 40 people I have never met, and had a general good time.

When it came time to leave our hosts are like: "Well, you wanna take some bugs?"

"Does a bear shit in the woods?"
(if you've read this blog for a while you have seen the proof post, unfortunately it didn't make the long term cut)

So wet get a couple of plastic shopping bags and Fisherman loads in the lobsters: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. TEN. Sweet.

We gave 4 to wife's dad. We took 6 home and made the best lobster roll I have ever had.

Pics to come.

Monday, August 06, 2007

MS 150 - Addendum

I figured I could get at least three posts out of this adventure. Maybe more, who knows? In my Day 1 post I mentioned a police report. Well here's that story:

As I was finishing up, coming down the final stretch. I could see the College entrance. A rider ahead of me was in the road making his left. The flagger was out waving him in. I moved to the left of the fog line(white line). Checked over my shoulder, didn't see anyone but the bikes behind me. Looking forward I signaled by dropping out my left hand when all of a sudden a red Chevy Impala comes whipping down the road (I could hear the car engine) blasts his horn at me. I'm thinking 'Fuck this guy" So I tried to keep position, I was turning left. His left car tires were over the yellow. As he forced his way pass me the rear view mirror hit my left forearm. I was PISSED! PISSED! ITALIAN PISSED! I started swearing like... unbelievable.
I didn't get knocked over. Thank God. I then took two or three good cranks to speed up and got the license plate number.

" I gut you, you muthahfuckah."

So I immediately went to an event organizer. Got the local sheriff involved and filled out a police report. One good thing is that I write a lot and I am observant and the leads to a superb written witness account. I found out there are two things this jackass can be summonsed for: reckless driving and driving within 3 feet of a cyclist. I have to get back in touch with the cop to remind him of that second offense, its a new law in Maine.

The car turned out to be a rental. Cops will have to do a little back tracking to get the driver. I wish bad karma on this guy. It was totally un-called for...He must have passed more then a dozen other cyclists along the stretch of road before me. Did he not see the big red MS signs? or the 20 other riders in the road? or the guy with the orange flag in the road with the yellow vest on? Ugh. I'm still racked with anger toward this guy. But now I'm just ranting....

Thanks for reading.

MS 150 - Day 2

On Sunday a similar routine of the day before occurred. Drive in at 06:30, prep bikes and selves, get ready to ride. However, the main difference was that today you could hear people in the parking lot as they were getting their selves ready with similar comments of pain. "Oh my legs, oh my butt etc. etc. " Yeah I was a little saddle sore but not too bad. I'm fine now.

Here is our group photo:
So we started again at 07:30. Again the speedy ground went ripping off. My friend and I told our wives " see ya at the finish" (They were doing the 50 miles option. We were doing the 75) and we rolled out. The second day the weather was MUCH cooler. Like about mid-60s in the morning, which is PERFECT!. This loop took us through Gorham, Scarborough, Hollis, Buxton and around. We rode through past the Scarborough Tidal Marsh, past an Elk Farm... really nice roads.

At mile 50 is the lunch stop. On our way out a guy who we had seen the day before asked if he could 'hook on' with us. This is a term used when you want to share the effort as a group rides down the road drafting each other. The trick is to stay less than 1/2 a wheel length off the guy in front of you. The #2 gets like a 25% word decrease, the #3 guys gets like 33% decrease. The bigger the group the easier it gets. Additionally, because the two drafting are working less they will come up front and break the wind for a while. Then just continue to rotate and before you know it everyone is moving along faster than if you were alone. Anyway, this guy started to ride with us. My friend got totaly gassed out and couldn't keep the pace. He told us to just go on. So we did.

Man we pounded out the last 25 miles in just over an hour (1hr 13 mins or there abouts). I was glad we did, because the temperature was so much lower I really had a fair amount of energy in me. I didn't have much when I finished, but that was the whole point.

Ride Stats: 4 hours 13 mins.
71.23 miles -apparently day 2 is slightly shorter
16.8 mph average speed.

Total Ride stats: 8 hours 30 mins, 145.5 miles, 17.1 mph avg speed.

We finished by 12:30 again.
By 1400 I had my free massage.
By 1700 were were home.
By 2100 we were passed out cold.

MS 150 - DAY 1

Saturday morning we arrived in the parking lot at St. Joe College in Windham, Maine at 06:30 sharp. After a brief check in and readying ourselves and our bikes we rolled up to the start line. The local weatherman (Joe Cupo) has been the 'official' famous guy promoting and riding in this event for somewhere around 20 years.

We started the ride at 07:30.

510 riders rolling down the road just absolutely glowing in all colors of the rainbow. As this was my first large event I was amazed by several things:
  • the color explosion;
  • the 510 people not concerned that they were wearing spandex shorts;
  • the array of bikes from 3+thousand dollar sweet ass road machines to bikes that look more at home slowly creaking down a city street;
  • the array of people (fit to fat, to put it bluntly)
As we got underway and going the peleton thinned out, riders getting into their own paces and whatnot, the riding was SUPER. The roads, while not closed, were monitored at intersections and with that many cyclists out the cars were mostly careful around us. Thou, there are always a couple of real assholes. One of which I filled out a police report on, but that is for another post.

I feel as if I'm beginning to lament. The ride was excellent. The roads through Standish, SteepFalls, Buxton and where else ever were well marked. With a rest stop every 15 miles or there abouts it made the 90 degree heat less of an issue.

Riding stats: 4 hours 17 minutes
74.24 miles. My computer popped out for about .75 miles before I caught it.
17.3 mph average speed.

I rolled through the misting tent at about 12:20 to the applause of volunteers and a few folks in wheelchairs with MS. Seeing them there made my pain and exhaustion seem minuscule.

Friday, August 03, 2007

MS-150 (stickypost until the ride)

I have just registered for the MS-150 charity ride to benefit the multiple sclerosis.
Wife has registered as well. I'm doing this ride with her, my good friend Mugsy and his wife.

On August 4th and 5th we will ride 75 miles each day.

I'm pretty excited about the ride. I haven't ridden in a large group before. I think it will be great! Of course I will be posting photos of the event when we are done.

**Now for the plea**
If you'd like to donate on-line and help me meet my goal please visit the web page I have set up through the MS Society.

Illegal Aliens

I have been working at a job site is Skowhegan this week. A couple of days ago a Border Patrol vehicle (SUV) pulled into the parking lot.

"Hey look, they gutta guy in 'der right now." one of the guys on the construction crew points out.

A while later a second white van with normal everyday citizen license plates pulls in next to the other SUV. It was a prisoner transfer. How cool for us since we were on break from the 90 degree heat! I got an issue with that license plate thing that is off topic, anyway...

They all ended up coming into the store. I guess the perp. had to piss or something. At first we thought, Mexican-obviously. but then as they got closer I started to think, Cambodian?. but as we all talked about it we all settled on Latin Guatemalan or something of that nature.

Here is the pic I covertly took as they left the store.

This poor guy is probably just picking broccoli or blueberries for 3 bucks per bail to send the cash home, is about to be deported.

I have mixed feelings. Sure he was clearly here illegally, but was he really a threat? On the other hand don't do the crime if you cant to the time.