Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Racing is easier

I haven't been in the real world for a while, but I gotta know, has it always been this complicated?

I thought, well, now that I am not training, I can get a few long ignored things done on the weekends.

One of those things was the bats, and the other was the baby.

~~The bats.

I literally have bats in my belfry. (is that how you spell belfry? It looks weird, like a Tacobell menu item) So, yeah, I have bats under the fascia (allow me to impress you with my construction vocabulary)thingie of my house.

I like the bats. They fly out each evening and it looks so cool watching them emerge one by one and head off for a night of mosquito eating.

But they poop. A lot. And all over my lovely little rear deck right next to the table where we would eat if there were not bat poop all over it.

And I guess its not really called poop, but guano. I don't know specifically when poop officially becomes guano, but if you are going to research this, you will have to google "guano" and not poop.

So the poop is by the table and thats pretty gross. I once had a Terminex contract but they wouldn't take care of the bats and then racing started and I didn't have time to sit outside on my deck so it didn't matter.

But now that I am going to spend lazy weekends at home sitting on my deck watching Michael weed in his skirt, it matters. I am thinking I can just call up some kind of professional bat person and take care of it this weekend.

So I google "bat removal" and this is what I learned:

Its guano and not poop
Guano is nasty and can cause some kind of nasty lung disease
Bats carry rabies
Bat are good
Bat guano can be harvested for use as a fertilizer, especially popular in hydroponics
Bats are in indicator of the health of your environment (bats = healthy as they don't tolerate pollution)
A single bat can eat over 3,000 mosquitos every night
Bat removal should not be attempted in mid summer because babies can't fly yet
You should put up a few bat houses (yes, bat houses) a few weeks before removal so the bats have a place to go
You have to make an exit only escape hatch thingie that allows bats out but not in and leave it there for several weeks before making something permanent
You have to check for poop damage in their nesting site

ummm...yeah, like all of that is going to happen.

I think I will sit on the front porch for a while.

~~The baby.

Speaking of poop, my friend just had a baby. I didn't go to her baby shower because I was busy. I am always too busy for baby showers by the way. Always. But I still want to get the little pooper something.

They opened up a new Mega Target here in Morgan Hill, and I head over there at lunch to find some kind of little baby present offering.

This Target is HUUUUGE. It looks like all other targets, just HUUUUGE. Big red bulleyes everywhere and red cement balls in the parking lot. And Starbucks, and Pizza Hut and a wine section that kept me distracted for a little bit.

I finally find the baby section and it is, I am not kidding, about 10 aisles. T-E-N. All baby, not children, not toddler, but babies. There were probably about 50 different baby pusher carts and a whole section devoted to nothing but bottle brushes. A whole section on something I didn't know you needed.

I thought you just got a few shoes, blankies, diapers, shaky toys and those cute little one piece pajama outfits and called it a baby. I was paralyzed by the all the options in front of me.

So I headed back over to the wine. We were out of red anyway.

Monday, July 30, 2007


Woah, what a weekend.

There were ups, there were downs, there were thrills and there were spills.

I went into the weekend in a pretty doomy gloomy mood. Lately, I have been feeling exceptionally tired, irritable, short tempered, and dare I say it....a little depressed. Sort of like Supersized Extra Special PMS squared. Except without all the blood. I certainly have not been feeling myself, anywayAfter a hard day's work on Friday and a long uncomfortable car ride, we arrived at our cabin to discover that it was tinier than our tiny bedroom and hot and stuffy and we couldn't figure out how to open the security latch on the window and the cats were pooping and Michael was cranky...and I lost it.
After yet another night of tossing and turning, I showed up Saturday morning to contest the Masters District crit with my pals and teammates. I love my pals and teammates, but that morning, I could think of about 783 other things I would have rather been doing. Like drawing Jesus, or organizing the garage, or I don't know...sleeping.

I was standing around with that gurgle in the stomach and discomfort in your own skin that happens when you are doing something you don't want to. And then I talked to a good friend who had been experiencing many of the same feelings I was. And it was like mini group therapy with the relief and validation that comes with knowing you are not alone and not crazy. Well maybe a little crazy, but certainly not alone.

And the relief was extraordinary. Almost overwhelming. I rolled out on the course to warm up, stopped at a particularly scenic spot near a barn and gave myself permission to let it all out.

And once that was all done and over with, I felt a gazillion times better and ready to move forward.

Here is what I determined. I am done, stick a fork in me done, with training and racing for a bit. Normally the training and racing levels I have been doing would be okay...but coupled with the stuff going on with momma, I was thrown into the deep end. I don't think the body can distinguish physical stress from emotional stress and both break the body down. And this body is officially broke down.
So I did a couple of unremarkable laps of our road race before pulling out completely guilt free. And with that whimper I ended my season.

But I have no regrets. Thanks to our awesome team and my wonderful man, I had one of the most rewarding seasons I have ever had since I started this racing silliness.

I got to work my ass off for my teammates, I have learned to take a race into my own hands, I have attacked even at moments when I feel I am about to get dropped, I have gotten into winning breaks, I won a hilltop road race, and I have learned how to risk.

So now I'll plan Surf City, maybe think about racing cross, and I seriously CANNOT wait for next season.


Yesterday I saw my man crash. I do not wish that on anyone. Neither the crashing nor the seeing of a loved one crashing.

I was setting up to take a photo and through the viewfinder (I always use the viewfinder, never the lcd screen) I watched Michael come around the corner. Right before the moment that I was going to snap the picture, I saw Michael and his bike buck strangely to the outside and then slam violently to the ground on the inside. And then I saw him lay on the ground, screaming in utter pain.
Because I was looking through the viewfinder, my sight senses were heightened and those visuals are burned into me.

And they make me sick to my stomach.

I wish I could delete them.

I've been trying to override them with images of Michael in his skirt instead.

Because putting his shorts on after the crash was too painful, Michael just put on his little wraparound changing skirt instead.

And then we stopped at the drugstore for some Tegaderm and tonic water. And so there was Michael, with his crash induced gimp and limp, and his Strumpfelpeter hair, and his Safeway tshirt inside out, and his bella socks and tennis shoes, and his little purple skirt, roaming the aisles of Rite Aid in Watsonville. And if you are going to have a crash memory visual burned into your brain, I would rather it be that one.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Calma te

Good lord this cycling business is filled with a bunch of melodrama mommas.

I know the shit is finally hitting the fan, but man, some of these people need to get a grip.

"How will cycling survive??!!!"

WADA and the UCI, I can't tell which is worse. The UCI are blumbering fools in their Swiss Miss Castle acting a day late and a dollar short, and WADA is a big giant beaurocratic bucket of hot air run by a man who would be king if he could.

The IOC at least showed some professonalism by issuing a calm and rational press release.

Anyhoo, they are all starting to annoy me.

But what really annoys me is that I didn't know how damn hobbit-ish Bradley Wiggins was. I thought it was just his name, but I saw some pics and I am serious, this guy stepped right out of Narnia or wherever the hell it is that hobbits are from.

Too bad he is out of the tour. We could have had some fun with him.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Cheer and Foaming in Las Vegas

This might make me actually want to go to Interbike.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Celebrate sport

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The one we were waiting for

He should have stuck to just whiskey


Monday, July 23, 2007

Tour Tapas

From Velonews:

Second place doesn't matter. I am going to risk all to win. If I end up in sixth, it doesn't matter."

The safe card rarely inspires. The one who dares to risk, on the other hand....

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Close Up

If you can get past Vino's neon yellow Oakley's (which haven't been seen since Greg Lemond sported them in 1989)you will notice Vino's helmet is different than his teams. I was curious, so I found a little close up.

I really was looking for a pic of him in front of that charging peloton, attacking at some savage speed, with bandages hanging from both knees, but I couldn't find anything yet.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Another day

Its days like these that I am grateful for my bike and my ability to ride it.

A good perspective check kind of day. Nothing deep or inspiring. Just a good plunk on the head reminder of how outrageously fortunate I am.

I spent about 8 hours of today waiting around in a hospital.

I hate hospitals and I hate waiting.

But somewhere in the middle of the day I was able to sneak out and roll around the (monterey) peninsula on a day that was either a freakish weather occurance or a sure sign of the beginning of the end. In either case, it was gorgeous.

And I made certain to stop at all the vistas and stare at the views with the tourists, even though I had seen these vistas a thousand times and stayed longer than the tourists.

And I threw caution to the wind on the downhill.

I watched kids play in the beach and smelled the greasy loveliness of a beachside burger stand.

I studied the harbor seals and their perfection of the art of laziness.

I went the wrong way down a one way street.

I climbed the hill I hate to climb and hit it out of the saddle at the top just to thumb my nose at it a little.

And checked out the vista once more.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Little white lie of the week

From Velonews' Andrew Hood:

Leipheimer took a sling-shot off a bidon pass just as riders typically do when chasing back on through the team cars,

Ummm...I think I was able to finish off a whole bowl of cereal while watching that "slingshot". Seriously, they almost went to a commercial break and came back and they were still slingshotting.

They should have gotten the fine just for being so horribly blatant about it. At least the italian teams have some guy out the window with an alan key pretending to be working on the seatpost or something. I am neither a Lance fan nor a Levi hater, but man, you just never saw that shit when Lance was racing. The car crew either acted their asses off and pretended it was a damn bidon pass, or the 4 guys left in the front went back and pulled his ass back up lickety split.

How ironic that Kloden actually waited for Vino, while Levi gravity raced down the mountain alone.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Like a hole in my head

I took pictures, I partied, I cheered.

I'm bored.

I've never been one for the sidelines. At least not for long.

I hope there is room in the garage.

Thursday, July 12, 2007


What was up with Astana today?

Michael and I were talking about Astana and how they have three possible gc leaders and who would wait for whom etc. Especially early on when there is no clear leader yet established.

That was the one thing about Postal. There was never any doubt. Everyone would wait. The Postal style made for some boring tour viewing, but it sure was the the epitome of unified teamwork.

Of course, when Postal was dominating, I hardly ever wanted to race home to watch the coverage...and today I do.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

More Thor

I am not usually one for the blondies, but this man is just a lovely speciman.

And here's a lovely little analysis of the sprint before the sprint. I love when the camera shows the action from 1K to 500M as that is where all the shit goes down. ROough and tumble as they say. But the slo-mo repeats always show the last 200M instead.