Thursday, September 28, 2006

Is it Vegas yet?

My feet hurt too much to type.

So the pictures will have to tell the story for now.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Land of a Thousand Elvi

This was the year I wasn't supposed to go to Vegas. So I am not really here. Which is nice. Except I'm here.

And if that doesn't make sense to you, well, welcome to Vegas. Where nothing makes sense to me.

Like the fountains at Bellagio. So, here's a place thats gone waaaaay out if its way to recreate a cultured refined Italian scene. With marble and columns and fine art. And with a large dancing fountain display thingie that goes off every hour or something. And what soundtrack plays to the dancing fountains with the lovely Italian background? "I'm proud to be an American" . Its especially moving when the fountains go real high on "and I'll proudly stand up" and the fountains go up. Genius.

And you know what else doesn't make sense? The bridge recreations at The Venetian. Again, the hotel has gone waaaaaay out of its way to recreate the walkway bridges at Venice, including the lovely Rialto bridge. Except in Vegas, the Rialto bridge has a moving escalatorish walkway on it. Because you can't actually walk on the walkway can you? That would be hard.

Okay, so I'm not a fan of Vegas. But I am a fan of bike stuff. I can geek out with the best of them.

I have to actually work tomorrow, so I don't know how much picture grabbing and bike snooping I can do. But I will try to fit in some.

The bella crew comes in tomorrow night, after late night baking and glamoring sessions...expect the real hijinks to happen on Thursday.

Stay tuned....

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Secrets of the Stars, revealed

Whats with the tongue?

All the fast guys were doing it this weekend.

But no one was doing it as sexy as Cameron with the come hither tongue and beard combo.

Interbike 25th Anniversoiree

Yes I'm packing this Sunday for my 3rd visit to the Big Bike show. Some know it as bike porn, I just remember it as the site a big 7 foot Not so Libre guy hoisted me into the air with my pink hat flying onto his shoulders. That was my first experience at Interbike. It was a show where there were not too many women attendees and mucho mucho macho hombres.

I had to scan the polaroid shot the paparazzi gave me for being such a good sport, and the tiny pic does no justice to this huge giant. By the way, I need a big burly guy to be Nacho Libre so I can be 'el skeleto' for Halloween Cross...
Funny thing is I've been asking around and it seems our cycling brothers have drawn a line in the sand in terms of how they will wear their stretchy pants...sans a red panty. Who woulda thunk it?

Now where was I? Yeah if you squint or look through your magnifying glass you can tell this was a giant. It took me two steps in the venue before I was hoisted atop his shoulders, and I have to say both my buns sat comfortably on his enormous deltoids. After that adventure, we were partying with the mullet heads in another booth, thats Sabine with a blonde Joe Dirt mullet.

This year Interbike 2006 is commemorating their 25th Anniversary, so there should be some great classic riders there, many fun exhibitionists, and I hear some go go dancing.

For that reason alone I am not wearing my go go boots, I wouldn't want to be confused with a paid promo girl. (yeah right;) I hear Eddy Merckx will be there and I plan on having him sign our own Velo Bella-Kona poster.

VeloBella will be unveiling a poster that was inspired by those great climbing shots of Fausto Coppi on the Alps. Check out the Schwalbe booth # 3425 at 2:30 on Thursday, for your free poster, they are limited in supply and trust me, it is one poster you will want on your wall.

Our beautiful Jen Chapman will be there in Classic style to sign the posters, she is the model in the shot. Jen is one of our original Bellas who started with us as a Cat 4 racer and a reluctant crit girl only to become one of our most valued Pro domestiques.

Jen exemplifies what it means to be a bella, she has class, style and an enduring quality that is just... endearing. Jen is a genuine first class example of what inspiration along with commitment, perseverance can accomplish. (that and a pair of good jeans, genes I mean)

I promised Jen I would help her cope with the life of a Pro celeb so like the clown at the rodeos I will be there to distract the bulls. Now, I have to go pack...and fill those 20+ goodie bags for our wonderful sponsors, Jen is baking them cookies and brownies.

Now how many teams personally bake their sponsors goodies? Jen and I spent most of yesterday personally decorating the bags so I hope they appreciate the Bella love that is headed their way. More on Interbike later, for now roll into the future with Schwalbe, and meet some of our Bellas at booth #3425 Thurs at 2:30. And thank our sponsors for supporting the Bellas.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Better red than dead

Alrighty then. I am going forward with the red kitchen.

And since I am not starting another blog (there are about 15 on my dashboard right now for crying out loud) you will just have to put up with reading about remodeling stuff here if I feel like babbling about it.

But today I don't feel like babbling about it. I'll just post a pic of my current plan and leave it at that for now.

I do feel like babbling about frustration.

Last night's ride was full frustration. I couldn't do anything right. I was wussy, out of balance, not in the mood (we're talking cycling here folks, just to be clear and all). Each time I bobbled or klutzed out, the frustration grew. And of course, when that happens its a vicious cycle and things just get worse.

Mine culminated in me slipping on a groove and doing a slow motion spillover into a thorny blackberry bush. It was one of those spills that leaves you all tangled and stuck, all retarded and helpless. I was flopped over in the bushes, where every movement led to a new thorn in me, with my bike on top and my feet still clipped in.

And I was stuck there...both physically and mentally.

I knew I wasn't hurt bad, but I wanted to cry. Not for the thorns, or the lack of grace, or the bruised booty, or even the fear that I was disappointing him. It was for all of the things that had been bottled up and shelved aside. Whatever those things are. Some I can name and some I can't. They are usually small and insignificant, but when piled on they can crush. And sometimes, when riding, you are so stripped down in essence, that those things can't hide. And they come out.

And fall into the blackberry bushes.

Luckily I have a partner with supreme patience and genuine love. He gave me just the right amount of support and space (such a fine balance between those two) and a kick in the ass. And luckily too that riding cross bikes is so godamn fun. By the end of the ride, the demons had fluttered away, the smile was on, and I was riding like a champ. I was still klutzing out, I'm sure, because I always do...but I felt like a champ anyway.

Bike riding and red kitchens. Keeping me sane.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Is it lunchtime yet?

I really really want a red kitchen.

But I know I am going to chicken out and get something more

A red kitchen is sort of like a little red dress. Spend some money on the right accessories and you look chic and fabulous. But, do it wrong, and you just end up looking like a cheap you know what.

And I am on a cheap you know what budget.

Oh, and I don't cook either. But according to Flandria, not cooking is all the rage right now. Except her not cooking thing looks like a lot of work, what will all the julienning and pulping. I won't be doing any of that in my red kitchen.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Too Many Shiny Lights

I really have been trying to blog

But I keep getting distracted.

On Friday I took the day off of work so that I could visit with my Uncle Reinhold. He is here visiting from Munich. My mom's side of the family is wacky. As wacky as my mom is, she's the least wackiest of her siblings. Her brother, Reinhold, is close to being one of the wackiest.

Last time he was here I took him for a walk around Pacific Grove. I turned my head for a moment, and he was no where to be seen. "Reinhold?.....Reinhold?" No answer.

Just as I began to worry, I heard some giggling from up above. I looked up and found my then 65 year old uncle in a tree. He explained that the tree looked like it needed to be climbed, so he climbed it.


But in a good way.

So I was worried to see him now ten years later. To see what being 74 had done to him. I was worried because I did not want to see the ravages of time. I did not want to see the childlike, sparkly eyed man turned into a slow, hobbling, gray eyed elder. As age sometimes does. I wanted my memory of him to be that impulsive man who climbed trees and giggled.

I needn't have worried.

And on Saturday and Sunday it was the weekend. And it was a particularly luscious and decadent and perfect weekend. No time for scribbles when that happens.

And tonight, I pulled out the computer to ~~~

wait a sec.....Jeni's boyfriend just handed me a piece of Gizdich pie and Marianne's ice cream. I might be a while.....

Shop Kat

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Don't quit my day job

So, on top of work, and Velo Bella, and Surf City, I am trying to remodel my kitchen.

I've spent the past few days working with a klunky little kitchen planner, placing drawers and countertops and sinks here and there. Last night, when I was all done, I was quite pleased with myself. "Damn", I thought, "This looks good. Really good. I am good at this. Do people get paid for this?"

Because you know, alternative careers are always entertained for brief moments.

And still feeling quite pleased with myself, I poured myself a glass of wine, glanced proudly at my creation on the computer screen, and realized that I had left out the refrigerator.

Urban Outlaw series has started.

Bunch a Kooks.

(photo above is from, the bestest cyclocross photographers ever. After me.)

Today was my year not to go to Interbike. Now, my work wants me to go. Ugh. As much as I love bike porn.....I can't stand Vegas.

Unless I am dancing in between tables at a Sushi restaurant.

I love my man. And I am not saying that because we are being seriously outschmooped. I am saying that because ... we are being seriously outschmooped. I brought this to Michael's attention last night (because schmoop maintenance is his responsibility, mine is like...umm......mmm... honey, what's mine?) And his reply was that they are on vacation.

Surf City
is driving me nuts. You all better come race these damn things and you better like them.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


I want to talk about The Vuelta, which got a hair more interesting today. And Tom and Manuel and the whole Discovery team doing well, but not doing anything. And who's the leader of their team? So confused.

And what was Petacchi thinking?

I want to talk about Cranky Frankie's admission and especially his feisty wife. Jeez, that is one pissed off lady. I am telling you, its going to be these spouses that may eventually pull down the house of cards that is currently silencing the peloton. Either someone pissed at the system for what she's seeing her guy go through, or someone pissed at the guy for doinking a podium girl and looking for a little retribution. Either way, Betsy did not hold back.

I like the name Betsy by way. Ah well, cat's already been named.

I want to talk about the first cyclocross race held in Belgium and won by Sven (V. not N.) and how cx season is almost here and I can't wait and a one day cross race is so much more exciting that this utterly painfully slow Vuelta. I want to talk about how much I love how loony cross is too. Just damn loony.

Need to figure out what I am wearing for Halloween.

I want to ride my bike at lunch because its gorgeous outside and my cross bike is in the car and wouldn't those trails I ride all the time at Santa Theresa be a fun new challenge on the cross bike.

Sigh...but no time for any of that. I have to head off to another meeting instead.

And pretend to be a grown up.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Its a blog blog world

Michael reprimanded me for not blogging today.

I beg to differ.

Surf City

Friday, September 08, 2006

From one Cheezy Bavarian to another

The Cheezy Bavarian sausage from Corralitos Meat Market would be scandalous in Bavaria. You don't put cheese INSIDE the sausage. But heavens, is that sausage ever good.

We broke down last night and ate some (well I only had a 1/2 because Michael stole mine when he was done with his). But we did an excellent job of justifying the decadence. I justified it because we had just finished doing 110 situps and 80 push ups (Didn't think I was counting did you?) and some unseemly number of these funky high kneed fast footed uphill thingies. Micheal's justification was that it tastes gooood.

I love the Corralitos Meat Market. Its one of those small town little community markets that is so rare these days. It is able to survive because on the weekends it is packed with visitors doing the Country Backroads thing. I also like living in a place that is a Country Backroads destination. Its a pain in the ass, like the Market has banker, not 7-11, hours, and sometimes I would like a sidewalk to walk on, and the whole septic thing is annoying, and the community is way more homogenized than this army brat is used to, and I 'd like it if meth lab and pot busts weren't so close...but most times I feel insanely lucky to live here.

And yesterday evening was one of those times.

Just noticed in that picture that a pack of cigarettes is almost $5! Holy shit.

And here's a completely unrelated pic, but I am too lazy to create another post for it. Its from our cross ride last weekend. What a great time and the reason I love this team and sport...

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Kitty in a sink

So, like, is the Vuelta even still going on right now?


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Lunch Rides

When will the boss learn that its not a reward to take me out to lunch? Its punishment.

I have to sit in a A'C'd room with a bunch of people I would never associate with freely, watching sales people pretend to be something they think you want them to be, eating something from a diluted safe menu, ignoring half assed political ramblings and gazing off into the sunshiney distance....wishing I could be pedaling along there instead of living the half life here.

Tomorrow's lunch ride might have to be a little longer than usual....

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


I just came back from shopping at Ikea


I hate that place

I have never ever gotten one of those cashiers to smile. ever. And I'm jovial. But Ikea employees are in no mood for jokes. They've got a job to hate.

And you'd think that after spending $500 (which in Ikea money is a lot) that they could at least bag your little items.

But no, they grunt at you and leave your little items just sitting at the end of the moving belt thingie, next to some plastic bags, and you can just bag it yourself even though you have a cart that you can barely maneuver thank you very much.

Except without the thank you.

An the cinnamon rolls never taste as good as they smell.

And yet I keep returning because I am too cheap to buy real furniture.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Emma O

Friday, September 01, 2006

A decadent life

A few weeks ago I told myself that I would start cutting back on my wine consumption. Michael and I usually enjoy 2-3 glasses each night as we dine, read, chat, surf, roommate kibbutz, build bikes, bella business, kitty fish, do laundry, or just stare blankly ahead. No matter what the activity, a glass of wine is never far from reach.

I decided that I would limit myself to one glass of wine per night.

So what did I go and do?

I bought bigger wine glasses.



So while google searching photos of big wine glasses, I landed on one of those tacky gifts websites. I saw this cooler thing. I am going to buy it for Michael and Jeff for christmas. Just in time for their feedzone duty for us bellas in 2007. They can drive it to the feedzone at our races. Jeff can put Michael in the little back cart thingie. It just needs a little flair.

The website has some hokey things on it. Like, who would want to do this to a hot dog?

Looks like Manuel Beltran will be the Disco leader at the Vuelta. Four discos finished in front of Tom today. I wonder what happened?

My major chores list just keeps getting longer and longer. I still haven't sold my car, finished my stairs, planted the apple tree, maintained my Toaster, and on and on and on.

And on.

As we were finishing our ride at Nisene on Wednesday night, someone in the parking lot asked me, "hey, can you guess what I sell?"

I answered with the second thing that popped into my head, "Ice cream?"

"No", he answered with a giggle (guess he likes ice cream too) "I sell windshields" And then he pointed to the tattered splintered windshield on my poor neglected Toaster.

He said he would come to my work and take care of it and he gave me his card. Easy shmeezy. Just a quick phone call and I can have a new windshield without a hint of interruption to my day.

Except I have no idea what I did with his card.