Crash with Panache

02.17.2006 | 4:33 pm

You want to know the fundamental difference between mountain biking and road biking? If you crash frequently while road biking, you’re doing it wrong. If, on the other hand, you don’t crash from time to time while mountain biking, you’re doing it wrong.

So, if we take it as given that you will crash from time to time on your mountain bike, what can you do to get the very most out of the experience? How can you turn your wreck from a display of clumsiness and negligence into the kind of story that gets told around campfires and office coolers?

By following these simple steps, that’s how.


Plan Ahead

Think of some generic injuries you can claim when the moment is right. Here is a brief list, to help you get started.

  • Internal bleeding: Keep this one in mind for the occasions when you’re hurt — no, seriously, you really are — but don’t have an injury that actually shows. Insist that you need to be taken to a hospital immediately. Once you’ve made this demand, however, you cannot back down. Follow through, even though you’ll probably feel just fine by the time you get to the hospital. When you finally get out of the waiting room, though, slip the doctor a $20 and say there’s another $20 in it for her if she’ll play along and tell your friends it is one of the most harrowing examples of internal bleeding she has ever seen, and that they’re lucky they listened to you.
  • Ruptured diaphragm, preventing breathing: If you get the wind knocked out of you, you can claim that you actually ruptured your diaphragm, and now have only moments to live before you suffocate to death. Explaining later why you’re alive may be difficult. I leave that to you. (Thanks for the idea, Tayfur!)
  • Torn ligaments: Good general-purpose, believable injury, and practically impossible to disprove in the field. Highly recommended.
  • High Altitude Pulmonary Edema: Use this if you’ve been riding clumsily the whole day. It’s best not to say you have this ailment if you’re below an altitude of 500 feet.
  • High Altitude Cerebral Edema:  Use this if you’ve been riding clumsily and saying stupid things.
  • Total amnesia: Save this one for an accident you’d rather forget. You may want to consider downgrading this to Concussion, which allows you to say you don’t remember the events surrounding a certain time period. Which you choose should depend on how bone-chillingly stupid and predictable your crash was.

During The Crash

Sometimes, a crash is so instantaneous you have no time to react whatsoever. I once, for example, was riding along on my own when I suddenly found myself sliding on my face.

Other times, however, you may be luckier: you see a crash coming, and have time to add some theatrics. In this case, I recommend the following steps:

  1. Unclip from your bike, if at all possible. Separate from it to whatever degree you can.
  2. Flail. Wave your arms while you’re in the air. Flailing looks good on camera, and increases your chances on winning in America’s Funniest Videos.
  3. Twist. If you’re in the midst of a good long fall, take a moment to try to do a 360.
  4. Keep your arms and hands close to your torso. As your landing approaches, bring your arms and hands in close, so as to not snap them like twigs. It’s very easy for me to type this, although I have never successfully done it in my entire life. You would think that now that my right shoulder sometimes separates just for the fun of it, I’d learn. But no: I still reach out to catch my fall every time.
  5. Roll. Roll once on impact at a bare minimum. If you feel you’ve got sufficient momentum, keep rolling. As you roll, ask yourself, “Am I badly hurt?” If the answer is “No, not really.” Try finishing the roll by standing up with your arms held high. Bow smartly.

After the Crash

Immediately after the crash, you have to make a snap decision. Will you go for comedy, stoic resilience, or drama?

  • Comedy is a surprisingly good choice, if you aren’t badly hurt and you’ve got an audience. Try saying, “Nothing to see here, move along” in your best Monty Python voice. Or, “I was pushed! I accuse you!” Or my favorite, “Ladies and gentlemen, the candlesticks are still standing!” Your audience is likely to laugh, even if you’re not funny, out of gratitude that they’re not going to have to perform first aid.
  • Stoic resilience is risky. If, after you crash — especially if it looked bad — you get up as if nothing happened, you will gain respect from your peers as being tough, though perhaps not especially bright. However, this severely reduces your options. If you start out as stoic right after the crash, but then discover ten minutes later after the adrenaline rush fades that the bruises, lacerations, and compound fractures are hampering your ability to enjoy the ride, you still must be stoic. You can’t go from stoic to drama queen. That’s ten times worse than starting out as a drama queen in the first place.
  • Drama is my default choice. It’s the safe bet. For one thing, crashes really do almost always hurt. For another, if I start out acting like I’m badly hurt and then discover that I’m actually just fine, it’s not difficult to make the conversion to comedy. Just sit up and say, “I’m not dead yet…I think I’m getting better…I believe I’ll go for a walk (Monty Python voice again). Or you can grab for the brass ring and do a drama-comedy-stoic transfer: suddenly go from rocking and screaming to standing up, dusting yourself off, and deadpan, “I now choose to internalize my pain.”

If you decide to go for the drama option (good choice!), you have a few moments after a given fall to think about what you will say to your riding companions. Use this time wisely.

First, choose your injury. If you are unsure which injury you are going to trumpet, go into the fetal position. The fetal position is a good universal symbol of pain, and gives you time to think.

Next, play it up. Don’t trivialize your pain. Never ever immediately say, “I’m OK.” Make them wonder for a couple seconds.

As you lay, moaning and dying, memorize your surroundings. It’s best if the wildly exaggerated tale you will tell later has some basis in fact. Your surroundings can help you find a good external cause for your crash, which is almost always preferable to, “I’m a bumbling fool.”

  • Ledges: Going over an unforeseen ledge is a great cause for an accident. Highly recommended. Unfortunately, if you did this, you’re probably really injured. Sorry ‘bout that!
  • Roots: Roots are tricky things that cause your wheels to change directions. Nobody will ever dispute the root reason. A suggestion: If you’re going to use a root as the reason you fell, always intensify it. Roots must always be slippery, slimy, wet, twisty, gnarled, or knotted.
  • Scree: Scree is dirt and rocks on the trail. Most mountain bike trails are constantly covered with dirt and rocks, so scree is difficult to disprove.
  • Rabbits with big, nasty, pointy teeth. Monty Python again. Sorry, can’t help myself. I’m definitely going to watch the Holy Grail this weekend.
  • Too much speed: You’re a victim of your own mountain bike prowess and bravery, not to mention your outrageous athleticism. Very good.
  • Gear: Chainsuck or a blown tire are great crash causes. They are verifiable, however, so don’t use them if they aren’t real, or at least if you have witnesses present. My best gear-related crash had me thinking I had actually been shot in the chest. It was back when Rock Shox Judy SLs were all the rage. The Judy used an elastomer stack for damping, which was inserted through the top of the fork, then secured with a screw-in cap. Coming down Mud Springs one day, I suddenly saw a flash of red, felt a sharp pain in my chest, and then crashed. I was sure some kid had shot me with a paintball. It turns out that the cap over one of the elastomer stacks had come loose during the downhill, and the stack had ejected, popping me right in the sternum.
  • Despair over the state of _________________. Hey, why not turn your misfortune into a political or moral statement?
  • Ennui: “I was tired of being on my bike, and thought I’d mix things up a little.”


Later, you’ll have time to craft a fine story about your crash. As you do this, remember: what was going on internally is as important as what happens externally. And it’s much more difficult to disprove. Say things like:

  • Time slowed down.
  • I thought to myself, “I am about to die,” yet remained strangely calm. I was at peace with the world, almost eager to meet the earth as it rushed to embrace me.
  • The pain was exquisite.
  • My spirit left my body. I remember hovering over my carcass, asking myself, “Do I want to go back into that vessel, to endure the suffering that comes with reuniting with my body? Believe me, it was not an easy choice.
  • No, seriously. My diaphragm was totally ruptured. I’d be dead if it weren’t for my quick thinking and a fairly unorthodox use of a patch kit.

Winner of the Banjo Brothers Bike Bag Giveaway

Congratulations to Wonderdyke, who gave the most cogent reason anyone would possibly wear the Davitamon-Lotto Team Presentation shirt:

I’d wear it to the hairdresser to get my Flock of Seagulls haircut.

Yup, I think I’d wear it in an 80’s Flock of Seagulls video, too. Or maybe if I were Howard Jones. Wonderdyke’s blog is highly recommended, by the way. Whether you’re a harried lesbian mom or not.


PS: Today’s weight is 168.8. Next week’s weight target: 167.8.


Team Davitamon-Lotto Announces It Wishes It Were Dead

02.15.2006 | 4:41 pm

February 15, 2006 (Fat Cyclist Fake News Service) – The riders of Team Davitamon-Lotto took the occasion of their 2006 team presentation last week to formally announce that they all wish they were dead.

“While at first there was a split between some riders wishing we were dead and others wishing we had never been born, we agreed it was important that we act as a team on this issue,” said star sprinter Robby McEwan, shown below.

“And so,” continued McEwan, “I am both pleased and extraordinarily distraught to announce that my teammates and I all wish we were dead at this moment.”

“Or,” added teammate Chris Horner, “We might be satisfied with killing the people who designed, approved, produced, and forced us to wear these shirts.”

Team Presentation Shirt Described

The outfit Team Davitamon was forced to wear has numerous unusual features, including:

  • Made of slinky white polyester
  • Red and blue trim, including racing stripes down the side, along with blue cuffs
  • A red interior collar and a stiff blue exterior collar.
  • Extraordinarily strange-looking white patch of material that goes over the right shoulder and traverses the chest, logoed with, evidently, “Brustor.” Note that this patch of material may be modeled after a hunter’s shoulder pad, though this is unclear. Further note that Brustor does not get what it pays for, since the “s” in their logo is inevitably tucked neatly into the wearer’s armpit.
  • Three red straps holding the chest strap in place. Each strap is fastened with a snap at each end.
  • Blue and black super-fat tie with a Davitamon logo and asymmetrical tip.
  • A clip and chain, going from the chest strap to the super-fat tie, and terminating in a red disc which looks like it may have an LED function, or perhaps is a container with a cyanide tablet inside, just in case the mortification of wearing this getup becomes too much.

This shirt is by most counts, a horrible monstrosity. It would, however, be a suitable uniform for workers at a fast-food restaurant, or performers in a circus. Until now, nobody would have ever suspected that one could force top-tier professional cyclists — especially in a team that has one of the more conservative jersey designs in the peloton — to wear such a thing.

Team Presentation Shirt Explained

Davitamon, the primary sponsor of this team, is a vitamin company, and not — as one might gather from the shirts being worn by the team — a manufacturer of circus tents. A spokesperson for Davitamon described the genesis of these shirts as follows: “Well, we wanted something that really popped. Something colorful, that really showed off our brand.”

When asked by a reporter why the team jersey would not accomplish this purpose, as well as help the public identify the riders during races this season, the spokesperson — who wished to remain anonymous, which is unusual for company spokespeople — said, “Oh. I wasn’t aware they already had team shirts. I’m not really into motorcycles, you know.”

“Anyway,” the spokesperson continued, “We just told this designer friend of mine we needed something big and bright with the logos front and center, and maybe a little dressy, and that he should have fun with it. And as you can see, this is a very fun outfit. Isn’t it fabulous?”

Team Reaction

Leon Van Bon, shown below, said that when he first saw the shirt-and-tie combination, he thought it was a joke. “I arrived at the presentation with my new bike kit, clean and ready to wear. And then this PR flack hands me this clown suit and tells me to put it on. I thought it was just a gag the others were pulling on me, until I looked around and saw the other riders’ faces.”

American racer Chris Horner was similarly displeased. “If anyone ever sees a picture of me in this outfit, I will never be able to show my face in the US ever again” (photo shown below).

Team manager Marc Sergeant, who did not have to wear an absurd outfit, took the death wish of his entire team in stride. “Actually, they had banded together, saying they would not wear these shirts, until I told them they had to,” said Sergeant.

“This goes to show,” continued the team manager, “I can make these guys do anything I want. My power over them is absolute.”

PS: Thanks to Fat Cyclist Fake News Service Correspondent NathanV, who first made me aware of these outfits. Nathan is also the one, by the way, who first tipped me off to Ekimov’s mullet. Way to keep your ear to the ground, Nathan.

Why I Hate the Song, “Birdhouse in Your Soul”

02.14.2006 | 4:21 pm

Some people listen to music while they ride. I never do. When I’m on the bike, I like to hear what’s going on around me, and I like to let my thoughts wander. 

Mostly, this is fine. My mind bounces from one topic to the next, sometimes landing on  a funny or interesting thought, or occasionally suddenly solving what I had previously thought was an unsolvable dilemma.

Once in a while, though, my mind gets stuck on something. On the way in to work Friday, for example, I found myself — for no reason I can think of — mentally chanting the list of common linking verbs a teacher had taught my class back in fifth grade.

I didn’t want it in my head. I tried to get it out of my head. But it wouldn’t leave. To make things worse, I couldn’t remember the whole chant. Just that one part. So while part of me was trying to get the stupid thing out of my head, another part of me was trying to puzzle out how the rest of the chant went.

Luckily, my ride to work isn’t that long, and the chant is now out of my head. Or at least it was, until I started writing about it.


Scar Tissue

Everyone gets songs (or, more rarely, chants about grammar) stuck in their head from time to time, but cyclists are especially prone to them. The rhythm of the cycling cadence, along with steady, fast breathing, lends itself to looping a song through your head, over and over.

It’s not always bad. I remember that for one of the laps of 24 Hours of Moab one year, Red Hot Chili Pepper’s “Scar Tissue” ran through my head continuously. Since Californication is in fact one of my favorite albums of all time, I was OK with this particular song auto-repeating in my brain, and even sang snippets of it out loud (causing concern among riders as they passed me or (less often) were passed by me). I hit the words at the end of lines with an extra-hard exhale:

Soft spoken with a broken jaw

Step outside but not to brawl

Autumn’s sweet we call it fall

I’ll make it to the moon if I have to crawl

To tell the truth, I would have preferred “Parallel Universe,” my favorite song from the album; it’s got a base line that forces a fast cadence. But one of the rules of endless-loop music seems to be that you don’t get to pick the song.



Birdhouse in Your Soul

This repetitive song phenomenon is no big deal, usually. Sometime soon after the ride ends, the song fades and you get on with your life.

If you’re on an endurance ride, though, an endless-loop song can become downright evil.

Several years ago, Dug, Racer and I drove to Laramie, Wyoming for what would turn out to be the final Laramie Range Enduro (that was a good course, rest its soul). As we parked the car and unloaded our bikes, They Might Be Giants’ “Birdhouse in Your Soul” came on the radio. Not paying much attention to it, I finished unloading my bike and lined up at the start.

About twenty minutes into the first climb of the race, the song came back to me. The problem was, I didn’t know the lyrics to anything but part of one verse and the chorus, and was even sort of sketchy on that. So I’m singing:

There’s a something something of me

Of my primitive ancestry

Who stood on something and kept the something shipwreck free

Though I respect that a lot

I’d be fired if that were my job

After killing Jason off and countless screaming argonauts

Something something something

Something it’s always near

Look at a canary over by the lightswitch

Who’s watching over you

Build a little birdhouse in your soul

Not to put too fine a point on it

Say I’m the only bee in your bonnet

Build a little birdhouse in your soul

And while you’re at it

Keep the nightlight on inside the

Birdhouse in your soul

Even taking the “something somethings” into account, I could tell I was getting it wrong — I couldn’t get the words to fit the meter. And the more I sang it, the worse it got, until I could no longer be sure I was getting the lines even remotely close to the right order.

And still it played on. For five hours.

After a while, I started looking for a suitable cliff to ride off, so I could end that infernal song. I imagined the conversation other racers would have as they saw me go over:

Racer 1: That guy just rode straight off a cliff! On purpose!

Racer 2: Did you notice the insane grin on his face?

Racer 3: More importantly, why was he singing that “Birdhouse in Your Soul” song as he went over?

Racer 1: I don’t know, but he was getting the lyrics all wrong.

I had a really fast time at that race, but took no pleasure in it. My dominant memory of that day is of that song, playing over and over and over.

And over.

I will hate that song forever.


It Gets Worse

As long as you don’t have children, you can at least take comfort in the fact that it’s your music that’s getting stuck in your head. Once you have kids, though, it’s a whole new ballgame. For example, my wife, in a fit of temporary insanity, purchased the animated video, “The Princess and the Pauper.” That would be awful enough, but the DVD comes with a bonus soundtrack CD. Which, of course, the girls want to be played in the car CD player. Always. And since there are only seven songs on that CD, you get to hear each of them quite frequently.

So: if I ride my bike head-on into traffic someday in the near future, you know why: I was doing whatever it took to get “You’re Just Like Me” out of my head.


PS: Today’s weight is 171.2. So my goal for the rest of this week is to undo the damage I did last weekend — get back to 169.0 — and then not hoover up every particle of food in sight in a 72-hour eating binge this upcoming weekend.

How to Do Many Unrelated Things

02.13.2006 | 3:29 pm

You know, I had something I was going to post last Friday. Seriously, I did. I was writing during my lunch hour when stuff started happening, which prevented posting the aforementioned post. 

I shall now tell you the story of what happened.


How to Suddenly Find Yourself with Time to Ride

It was my lunch hour. I was just typing. Seriously, that’s all I was doing. Just typing along. Then without warning (I wonder what form the warning would have taken, had there been one), the LCD went white. Then it went magenta. Then it went into a sort of interstitial dance of random pixeliciousness.

 “Hey, look at the fireworks I’m getting!” I called out to Brad, who works in the adjoining office.

“Very nice,” said Brad. “Have you saved recently?”

The answer to that questions is in fact, “Yes, I actually developed the habit of saving at the end of each sentence back when I worked at WordPerfect, and that habit has served me well.”

In this case, though, it wouldn’t have mattered if I had developed the habit of saving after each vowel. The motherboard’s toast. I’ll get the hard drive back in a couple of days. We’ll see what survived then.

“Hey Brad, it’s a nice day out. Did you bring your bike to work?”

“As a matter of fact, I did.”

“How about a ride around Lake Sammamish?”


How to Help a Teenage Driver Feel Better About Herself After She Hits You With Her Car

You know what’s great? Leaving work early on a Friday afternoon, guilt-free, to go on a ride. And even though it’s February, it’s warm enough that you can ride with shorts and a long-sleeve jersey.

And besides, Brad and I spent at least a third of the ride talking about work, so it actually qualified as a highly-productive meeting.

Brad’s new to road riding, and so I tended to lead a little bit on the climbs. Which turned out to be a good thing for Brad, because as I rode past the Thompson Hill Road intersection on my right, a car rolled through the stop sign, turning right, and clipped my rear wheel.

I swerved wildly, corrected, swerved again, corrected, and then just wobbled a bit. I rolled to a stop, threw up my arms in a “Hey, you just hit me!” gesture. No, not that gesture. Really. Ask anyone who knows me if they’ve ever seen me do that gesture.

The car pulled over, and the most embarrassed, penitent, remorseful teenage girl in the world ran over, apologizing at — let’s face it — a comical rate.

“I can’t believe I did that,” she said. “I am so stupid. I could have totally killed you if you had been a half-second slower. Let me buy you a new wheel. Your wheel’s OK? Are you sure? Let me buy you a new one anyway. Oh, I can’t believe I did that.”

I am confident she is still apologizing.

So here’s the thing. This is the third time I’ve had a close encounter on a road bike, but by the time I parted ways, I was laughing. I can’t stay mad at someone who admits they made a mistake.

‘Course, I may have managed to stay angry if she had rolled over my leg, even with the apologies.


How to Ride Over Lots and Lots of Logs

On Saturday, I finally got to go back to Soaring Eagle Park to check out a little more of what I have been missing for the past couple years.

Yeah, the purple dotted lines represent the singletrack network. 627 acres of it. This is half a mile from my house.

Sorry, I’m still kicking myself over not having ridden this ’til now.

In shorts and short-sleeved jersey, I went on a three-hour ride, just seeing if I could cover all the singletrack in that park.

As I rode, I followed these self-imposed rules:

  1. Avoid doubling back on yourself if at all possible. Crisscross all over the place, but never turn around.
  2. When there’s a log in the trail, ride it. Even if you don’t think it’s rideable.

I obeyed the first rule until I found what must be the best section in the whole network, and found myself thinking, “Too bad I can’t double back on that and see what it’s like going in the opposite direction.” At which point I recalled the mountain biking prime directive: “Have fun.”

I smacked my head, turned around, and rode that section in the other direction.

Just as good.

The second rule — ride all the logs — taught me a lot. Specifically, I learned that the real trick to riding over logs is to just keep pedaling, even after you think you’re going to fall. In fact, make that especially when you think you’re going to fall. ‘Cuz right at that point where you’re high-centered and feeling all unnatural-like, if you keep pedaling you’ll probably clean  the log. If you stop pedaling, you’ll fall over sideways.

By the end of the ride, I was a better cyclist. How often do you get to say that?


How to Sabotage Your Diet So Completely that a New Law of Physics is Named After You

I started Friday morning at 169.0. Basically, by going totally hardcore for half a week, I managed to lose the weight I needed to meet my goal. When I got home from riding around 45 miles Friday, though, I was hungry. It wasn’t the kind of hungry that a meal fixes, either. It was the kind of hungry that makes you wander around the kitchen, stuffing things from the fridge and pantry into your mouth while you wait for the microwave to finish. Did you know that it’s possible to eat most of a bag of chocolate chips in less than five minutes? Did you know that saltine crackers taste great dipped in peanut butter? Did you know that saltine crackers with a little piece of cheese on them also taste great dipped in peanut butter?

Is there anything that doesn’t taste great with peanut butter?

Once I had blown it so utterly before dinner, I had an, “Oh well, today’s shot, may as well enjoy it” attitude and just kept eating. I figured I’d go back to the diet on Saturday morning.

I did not go back on the diet Saturday.

Nor on Sunday.

And it’s not like I just didn’t diet. I anti-dieted. I ate all the junk I’ve been avoiding. And I ate monster portions of everything. Very clever.

I did not weigh myself today, because I am terrified of what I might find. I’ll weigh myself tomorrow and set a new goal, and will absolutely be more disciplined next weekend.

Unless, of course, I’m not.


PS: How to Give Credit Where Credit’s Due

When, last week, I said that Carb-Boom’s apple-cinnamon energy gel tastes just like McDonald’s apple pie filling, I should have mentioned that my riding bud Eric Gunnerson told me this exact thing about a year ago. I just didn’t believe him. Well, he was right.

Eric is, by the way, currently engaged in an interesting new blog project called Explanations, wherein he moderates an ongoing inquiry into what the cute little sayings on the inside of Dove’s candy wrappers mean.

And for that reason, I am changing my rating of Eric from “Evil Genius” to “Evil, Whimsically Misguided Genius.”


PPS: See this Movie if You Have Four-Year-Old Kids

I took the twins to see the Curious George movie over the weekend. As a person who loved Curious George books as a kid, I thought this was a great re-imagining of the Curious George story, especially how instead of having the man in the big yellow hat capture and remove George from his home it has George steal aboard the boat. Also, at long last, we get an explanation for the yellow outfit and hat.

Seriously, I enjoyed the movie. My four-year-old girls did, too.

And I ate the maximum amount of popcorn allowed under Washington State laws.


02.9.2006 | 4:56 pm

Back in November, I wrote a review of the energy gels I have tried. The short version of that story was: gels are a necessary evil. Except the necessary part, maybe.

Then, toward the bottom, I said:

There are a lot of brands out there I haven’t mentioned. Carb-Boom, for example. If they’d like to send me a batch, I’ll try it and even write about it.

To my surprise, I shortly afterward got an email from Mike of Carb-Boom, asking for my address. Turns out he took my offer at face value.


Big Box of Goodies

Mike didn’t just send me four packets of gel, either. He sent me several single-serving gel packets, two “Big Boom” bottles, some of their Pro-Boom recovery gel, and a few servings of their Hydro-Boom sports drink.

Here’s what I thought.

  • First and foremost, Carb-Boom energy gel absolutely rules. My main complaint about other energy gels was that they tasted so nasty that I looked for reasons to not use them. “Hey, it’s only been half an hour since I last sucked down a gel. I think I’m good for another ten minutes.” The Carb-Boom flavors, on the other hand, actually taste good. In particular, the Strawberry Kiwi, Banana Peach, and Apple Cinnamon flavors, instead of just being purely and overwhelmingly sweet, taste like actual fruit, and have an element of tartness to them. And they give you the same energy boost you expect from any other gel. Maybe it’s because they had the audacious notion of using real fruit for their flavoring, but Carb-Boom is has overcome the previously-insurmountable “tastes nasty” barrier.
  • Apple-Cinnamon Big-Boom Rules Even More. Big-Boom is a twelve-serving bottle of Carb-Boom, available in (caffeinated) orange-vanilla and apple-cinnamon. And while the orange-vanilla didn’t do much for me, here’s the thing about the apple-cinnamon flavor: it tastes exactly like a McDonald’s apple pie. Except the flaky crust, and it isn’t hotter than the sun. I’ve found my new endurance food, kids. Two of these bottles — which comes out to 2640 calories — and a couple cans of chicken soup should be all I need to get me across the Leadville 100 finish line in style.
  • Hydro-Boom: What? A Sports Drink that Isn’t Sickly Sweet? The first impression you get with Hydro-Boom is that it’s salty. Turns out that’s sea salt, which I have a vague impression is somehow better for you than regular salt, though I have no idea why. I do know that when I’m riding I get sick of the “sweet” taste of most drinks pretty fast and so have in general just switched to water, even on endurance rides. Would I be able to drink this all day? I don’t know, to be honest. I’d be willing to give it a shot.
  • Pro-Boom: The consistent theme with everything Mike from Carb-Boom sent me was that it tastes great. That was true of their recovery gel, Pro-Boom, too. The thing is, though, it’s hard to gauge whether a recovery gel has done its job. I’m pretty sure Pro-Boom would go great with nachos, though.

Banjo Brothers Bike Bag Giveaway Winner Announced

I couldn’t help it — I was swept up in Dope Control’s beautiful dream. Its wildness, weirdness, and completeness captivated me.

My island was constructed in the South Atlantic by the extra terrestrial race credited with the construction the pyramids of Giza and kick-starting such advanced ancient civilizations as the Incas and Mayans. For them, it served as a runway for their colossal spacecraft, but today it is visited only by a publicity-shy collective of super-intelligent highway surface engineers who use the island as a test bed to further their quest for the perfect road surface. They do this at night.

The island is 25 miles long and 30 yards wide.

At one end of the island lives a small community descended from two aliens that were left behind when their comrades departed Earth for the last time. Their staple diet is hot dogs – it is all that they can eat.

At the other end of the island is a hot dog factory. The aliens have recruited a legion of truck drivers to satisfy their huge appetite for the hot dog, who spend their days driving from one end of the island to the other at terrifying speed, though never once losing control of their vehicles or straying from a perfectly straight path.

My bike is not visible to the naked eye. It is a product of the world’s finest nano-technology lab, and though it boasts conventional frame geometries, its tubes have the tensile strength of spider’s silk the thickness of a waitress’s arm. When I ride it, the frontal area I present to the wind is smaller than the surface area of a bottle top.

On the island I hold time trials.

Email me with your address, Dope Control, and I’ll get that seat bag out to you.


PS: Today’s Weight is 169.8. I guess when I stick to my diet and exercise, I can lose weight. Amazing!

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