Friday, December 14, 2012

Not Again! Return of the scat eater.

And so it is with Arrowhead.  Well if you define "scar" thusly: leaves a lasting impression.  No doubt Arrowhead wounds some.  But some of us keep coming back (personally it's my third time and I know there are others that have done it several more times than that).  If it wounds it must be kinda like a wound that causes a scar that you brag about at the bar after a few months of healing.

Sunday, Greg, Jon, and I rode our bikes to Iron River and back - which is a little over 40 miles.  We were supposed to get a big snowstorm but although it was snowing lightly most of the ride it never really got deep.  I must say I was kinda hoping for an epic....

As you can see it was on a rail-trail.  I know that I said I was hoping for an epic ride but also have mixed feelings about that.  Over the years I've done enough rides (mostly races) on rail-trails - and if trail conditions are bad it means that epic-ness ensues.  This is for a couple of reasons: 1) It's flat (or very nearly so).  If you can't ride here you can't get going again on the next downhill because there are no downhills.  If conditions are bad it's very likely that they're gonna be that way for a while.  2) It's straight.  Let's consider a scenario: If conditions force you to get off and walk then you'll be going relatively slow.  You get off, look around and then put your head down and walk for a ways.  When you look up again it seems as if nothing has changed: that crooked tree that was in the distance when you first started walking is still in the distance.  3) Even in ideal conditions rail-trails are boring.  And I can never get over that the trail itself is a leftover of industry.  I realize that industry has made it possible for our way of life.  I realize that industry makes possible things like cars and computers and bikes.  I realize that.  But it always rubs me a the wrong way that after all is said and done, after the fat cats get their profits, that they can't seem to clean up after themselves in a meaningful way.

Speaking of epics naturally makes me think of wet cats.  The connection is obvious.  At least the maker of this video thought so.

Anyway, at one point the trail took us by a beautiful wetland and I had to stop for a picture:  

Jon's bike had a coating of snow
I thought I'd repeat my scat-eating shenanigans from a few years back.  Just kidding these are actually chopped dates with a coating of flour.  Really!  Why are you not believing me? 

I actually did eat this.  Or at lease put it in my mouth with intentions to eat it.  I rather intensely regretted this almost instantly.  I'm a quick one let me tell ya'.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


Well, I suppose that since I'm solely responsible for the content of this blog I could say that Jon and I rode 5 hours Saturday, downed a bottle of whiskey without stopping midway through the ride and all I had to eat was my last Twinkie ever (since the company that makes them is no more) and was also juggling running chainsaws.  And I rode 90 miles in those 5 hours.  Yeah, would you believe that?   

How about this: Jon and I rode 5 hours on Saturday only stopping for a few snacks and when we got done I felt as if I could've kept riding for another 2 hours.  And when I got done I stretched, took a shower and had enough energy to have a mock wrestling match with my stepson.  Believe that?  

Well in truth, Jon and I did ride 5 hours  We did stop to eat and drink.  We managed about 40 miles over some tough terrain.  When we got done riding I took a shower and then passed out in bed for a bit managed to drag myself around that evening and was so tired that I lobbied to watch the same Harry Potter movie that we had watched the night before so I could just shut my brain off.  At the risk of sounding like a surfer-dude (or see the remix here) I was thrashed.  It was a great ride.

I will only maintain the level of intensity that we maintained Saturday in Arrowhead if being chased by this:

While riding towards Long Lake, Jon thought it would be fun to see if the ice was strong enough to hold us and if it was ride around on it.  It was strong enough* and we also found a turtle.  It was epic.


The helmet straps were epic as well

* We didn't actually break through the ice but it wasn't any too thick either.  As we rode slowly and cautiously along the ice would moan and crack - sometimes it would crack enough that I could feel the ice shift.  It was freaking me out and soon after we started I pulled off on solid ground and called out to Jon that I was turning around.

Speaking of turtles naturally reminds me of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  If you are ever feeling pathetic or that you're life isn't worth the paper its printed on just watch this enthralling video and you'll feel better.  It's about a full-grown woman who works in a factory and takes out loans to be able to afford to buy the head used by the Turtle Michelangelo in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III.  I must say, I'm not sure what to make of this.  Sure, there may be a few dumber ways to go into debt, and really borrowing two grand is childs play compared to just the debt a lot of people have sunk into their cars (which is - of course - accepted by society, though it's probably only accepted because of slick car ads, not because it makes sense.  On the other hand who the hell am I to say if something makes sense or not?).  But to spend enough money that you have to borrow some to be able to afford a fake plastic head?  And then people not only do stuff like Arrowhead, but pay to do it.  I'm realizing that I'm in no position to be throwing stones, since I live in a glass house.  

Breaking: you can buy a bathroom mirror wiper for only $135!
I'm sure it comes in handy, but $135?  Really?  You'd think for that price it would be motorized and voice activated.