Friday, June 26, 2015

Finally, You Can Ride That Tandem of Life With Whomever You Please

Miscegenation? How dare...!!!

 Shit. Now I guess we all have to rush out and get gay-married. My wife ain’t gonna like that one bit. Neither will Scalia.  --Patrick O'Grady, on his own site.

Wish my brother in law, the late Rev. Warren Zeh, had lived long enough to see this. Loving vs. Virginia, as it happens, was also announced in June (1967). That said, some in this great nation are still fighting to reinstate anti-miscegenation as a policy. See jpeg below.

Here's to everyone who has been told to "get off the road", so to speak. Its finally, legally, unambiguously, your road too, in all fifty states under that flag.

 “No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family,” he wrote. “In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were.”

“It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage,” Justice Kennedy said of the couples challenging state bans on same-sex marriage. “Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.”

--Justice Anthony Kennedy, speaking for the majority

Here from the wonderful state of Oklahoma...

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Hey Sport Motorbiker. We Are Not Traffic Cones

Shit Happens. Even without your help.
Headed down NM-4 from the Jemez towards the tail end of a 40 mile bicycle ride, I was on the next to last sharp curve before one gets to the final set of hairpins. Two cyclists, a man and a woman, were climbing through the curve and I was halfway through my line, about in the middle of the downhill lane and in a medium but not overcooked lean, i.e., even my head was on my side of the double yellow line. So along comes someone riding fast uphill on a sport motorbike, passing in the gap between me leaning left in my line and the two uphill cyclists. The motorcyclist was leaning heavily, and at some serious speed.

I don't know who that was and frankly, don't know his or her abilities. Perhaps it was a technically very good rider, but I question the rider's judgement. Even good riders pushing the envelope occasionally find the envelope pushing back on them. Don't take innocent parties with you when you f**k up.

A few years back the Pajarito Riders crew was moving fast through the hairpin in that hollow near Forest Road 289 when some sport moto guys came riding through fast from the other direction. They all got their handlebars tangled up and several people ended up in the hospital. Apexing only works well when you exit the other side upright.

Be careful out there. I love motorcycling as much as anyone, which is why I consider my motorized brethren fair game for a ration of shit. I prefer to not damage anyone else in the process of having my little bit of fun. Don't put other people at risk, no matter what the devil you are riding or driving. I've been the guy standing at the side of the road several times watching other people get the spatula treatment, i.e., being scraped up off the road. I've also got two Spatula Awards of my own. Either way, its a terrible experience.

Thanks. Off the soapbox. Hope everyone up there, motorized or not, had a great day and got off the mountain before the thunderstorm.

A compilation of motorcycle crashes on Mulholland Drive, CA.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

County Launches ‘I Support Manhattan Project National Historical Park’ Campaign

 Otherwise known as "We've been on the Federal Teat For Over Seventy Years. Why get off now"? I keep wondering why Los Alamos cannot do anything for itself. But its just too easy to keep bellying up to the trough. We are all supposed to sign postcards and otherwise beg for more Federal money. Be my guest.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

26 May. Sigh. Back to Work

Enough of the fun bikes. Back to the salt mines. Put a set of fenders on the Long Haul Trucker as they mount to the bike in a normal, straightforward manner, unlike the ones on the disk brake bike that have to be turned, twisted, and jammed on with rubber gizmos and zip ties. Now it will stop raining as long as the fenders are on the bike, eh?

The LHT is starting to look like that picture of the F-4 Phantom with everything piled on except the kitchen sink. Or maybe they just forgot the sink. But I guess that's what a workhorse vehicle is supposed to look like, eh? Ready for anything, whether it be SAMs or storms.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

23-24 May in Lafayette-Boulder

Boulder's Bike-Walk Month Mag
Bike month doesn't officially start in Boulder till June, most likely due to their being both north and at high enough elevation to make May dicey, but it seems they are about to put on a pretty good show. In addition to a detailed web site, they put out a 47 page glossy magazine (shown on the left) publicizing all the events for bike-walk month.

The city is quite festooned with bicycle infrastructure such as the buffered bike lane shown below and on the right; this one runs along Baseline Road. Plus, unlike last November, when I knew absolutely nothing about the Boulder area and was riding on narrow, shoulderless and high speed Arapahoe, I since found Baseline, which has good shoulders and/or bike lanes all the way from our friend's house in Lafayette to downtown BikeTown, including good connectivity to a lot of other great riding.That discovery made for a fast little 20 mile loop Saturday morning on the CAAD-5, before the ever present thunderstorms of the last few weeks moved back in.
Buffered bike lane in Boulder, on Baseline Rd

 Sunday involved a 30 mile loop (again, racing Old Man Weather) starting in Lafayette and heading southwest, including parts of routes 93, 128, and 170 that Patrick O'Grady told me were part of the Morgul-Bismark Coors Classic course west of Superior. Of interest to BombTown readers, it also skirts the edge of Rocky Flats. It was a feisty, rolling bike ride, but at least this time I was able to keep up with my hosts. Or, they were being nice. We skipped the famous nasty uphill finish, though.

Nice weekend, but we have been dodging thunderstorms every afternooon! Including one right now.
My biking hosts, Joe and Dale, with Eldorado Canyon (I think...) as a backdrop

Joe and some old fat guy who was sucking wheel, with Boulder in the background

Just for fun....a movie

Sunday, May 17, 2015

17 May: Bicycling Isn't Just For Riding Slowly, In Street Clothes, On Bike Paths Any More

Naw, I'm not really gonna start that rant. But I did have a great ride today out in the country on the fast-looking, black Cannondale CAAD-5. I bought the frame in 2002 and it is still a great ride, albeit a bit teeth-chattering, especially with deep aero rims, on the chipsealed, segmented NM-4.

Didn't bother with the Santa Fe Century because there is so much good riding up here (so why drive 75 miles R/T to ride a bike?) and I can eat a leisurely breakfast at home. It still leaves me scratching my head that Los Alamos County does so little to promote organized rides or races, given the county's professed interest in diversifying the economy. I guess diversifying the economy is a good idea, as long as someone else does the work (LANL, the Manhattan Project National Historic Park, Bandelier, some other Federal Big Daddy, etc, etc).

As I have said before, and plenty have done it, one can cobble together quarter century, half century, metric century, and the 100 miler on roads around here that are as challenging as any. Sure, the longer routes will take cooperation with neighboring jurisdictions as used to be true with the Jemez Mountains race for the Tour de Los Alamos, but that is true for any long ride. If the road to Cuba is paved, I think that could create an out and back brevet (136 miles or 220 km) rivaling Red River in difficulty. A loop from Los Alamos through Cuba, around NM96 to Abiquiu, and back again is about 255 miles/410 km.

Zero interest. Snooze.

CAAD-5 in current dress, with ALX-320 wheelset, Michelin Race tires, FSA Energy crankset, and Shimano 9 speed Dura-Ace shifters and Ultegrra derailleurs, all cobbled together out of whatever was on sale at Bike Nashbar when I built this baby up. The stem extender was added after I herniated a disk in 2005, making the bike rideable again with less lower back flexibility.

Vintage Cannondale Catalogs