Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Saturday ride pt 2: getting back

Here is where I had lunch Saturday.  It was windy, and getting grey out I was starting to worry that the direction the weather was taking.

It didn't rain, but I didn't know it wasn't.

I'm not sure exactly where I was still.

Here's a pretty bike.  I wonder where it was going...

Here are a bunch of bikes at The Depot.  A cool little coffee house right there on the trail.  They filled my water bottle and made a nice white mocha.

Mmmm coffee...

Much of the reason I stopped for coffee at the depot was that I was seriously crashing.  I waited too long to eat lunch.  So I sat on the patio drinking water and a white mocha waiting for my legs to come around.

When they did eventually stop feeling like rubber, I biked over to Hiawatha Cyclery to show the guys in the shop my "new" Camera box.  

Then I caught up with Shannon and April at Sea Salt and we had ice cream.  A good time was had by all.

Poor decisions

We broke 60 miles in a weekend, and then botched recovery.

Monday night I did laundry till 1:45am.  Went to work on Tuesday so tired my skin hurt.

slept 10 hours last night and while still tired, feeling human.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Saturday ride pt 1: how to get lost on a paved trail without leaving it

After a bit, specifically after I past The Depot, signs stopped appearing on the trail.  so I really didn't have a good idea where in the or out of the cities I was.  

I knew I had entered Hopkins.

I knew I had crossed several highways and Minnehaha Creek.

I didn't know any better than that though.  Which sort of put me off my lunch.  

And that was bad.  I was starting to feel tired in my legs and my sugars were crashing.  B
ut I didn't want to stop till there was a recognizable landmark.

And then the trail as I knew it vanished.


So I rode on the sidewalk to the next intersection and took pictures of all the signs I saw.

Home schools get signs???

This is the intersection.  Negative west 62nd Street and Some Frontage Road.  Bloody hell.

So I haul out a map and start looking for that.  
But the map I am carrying does not show smaller roads, it barely has county roads on it.  But  it did have 62 and it did have 4.

Which is right about where I was.

I like dark shadows and I cannot lie

Before I post about the bike ride yesterday, I want to mention how much I like the new light meter.  Notice how contrasty the pictures of the ammo box are.  

Saturday, May 24, 2008

de-militarized camera "bag"

A week ago we went to Stillwater and bought a new light meter.  

One of the many things we didn't buy was a small ammo box for 7.62 rounds.  But what it did do was make me remember the .50 caliber boxes that were so popular in boy scouts.

I mentioned this in passing at work, and one of my co-worker's ears perked up.  He's had one in his garage for ages.

I've been concerned about biking with the camera because I'm afraid of smushing the thing.  obviously a cinderblock  like the Mamiya is more rugged. BUT, I still don't want to have to worry.

What better way to stop worrying and love the camera, than to line a sturdy steel box with inch thick foam?

The box weighed 5 lb empty.

I figure if I am not going to obsess over 5 grams, why worry about 5 lb.  

Today I biked out to the Glen Lake golf course over off 62 and 4.  38 miles round trip from home according to Gmaps pedometer.  Somehow my lazy ass survived the burden. [/sarcasm]

pictures to follow.

Monday, May 19, 2008

new gadget

A while back I was in Russia.  And there I bought a hand held light meter.  And it worked pretty well for three years.

Last fall it froze, telling me that the light was 8.  Always.

Yesterday we were in Stillwater and in the Midtown Antique Mall there was a pile of old camera equipment.  

This light meter is a lot more accurate than the old one. 

It was also dirt cheap.

here's to antique shops.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

J [ampersand] S

We're hanging out in J[ampersand]S, one of my favorite coffee shops, listening to a pianist.

He just apologized for his sparkplug boot's slipping.  He only has one hand and plays mean piany with a wicked left hook.

My boss, like my aunt, had polio when he was young.  And though he rolls around on Phil wood hubs, he sets stones better in his sleep than most can on a good day.

We find a way to make things work.

Like three speed bikes: somehow people get places on them.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

That just happened

We just watched Talladega Nights.

I think 


was terrible.

Old School wasn't bad, Stranger than Fiction was five minutes too long and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang didn't have Will Farrell in it at all.  

I'd sit up and curmudge more but I think I'll go to bed.

Strategic Bicycle Reserve

On Planetary Gears I just commented that I have a Strategic Bicycle Reserve (SBR).  

This is completely the truth.

[eyes bug out]
Sitting at the coffee shop down the street from work I just watched the price of a gallon go from $3.58 to $3.72.


I used to rebuild bikes for friends from garage sale wonders.  Back in the mid and late ninties mountain bikes were the rage and old road bikes were 10-40 dollars or FREE.  A cheap hobby it was.  And I have kept a box of parts from the left-over bits.  Spare handlebars, deraillures, cranks etc.  Which make up the SBR, for those times when bits are needed in a pinch.

Now I have a spare frame: an old Schwinn Continental.  

You never know when a spare something will come in handy.  Shannon says there is no such thing as a spare frame, that it makes up too much of bike to considered a "spare part." I say anything that is not ridable for want of other bits is a spare part.  This frame lacks a front deraillure and wheels, making it unridable.  

Maybe if I took the handlebars off she will accept it as a spare part...

Monday, May 12, 2008

kitty and cream

Cheesecake takes a lot of cheese.  And room temperature cheese

how, then, does cheese warm up with a cat?

close the cupboard

Also, this cheese is awesome.  And cheap. And fresh.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Biking across the river

So Monday I had my first flat tire in 7 years.  Thats right the last time I had a flat tire on my bike was during Freshman year.  That time the valve stem popped off.

For a flat this time I was flying down the hill from Minnehaha Park towards Fort Snelling, and underneath Highway 5 there are always small rocks, one of which found my back wheel appealing.

During the 15 minutes it took for me to flip the bike, pull the wheel and patch the hole, like 20 people asked if I had everything I needed.  (I have to say the change to mustache bars from noodle bars is awesome (I don't like aero brakes and the cables made it "impossible" flip the bike without crushing the housing) for changing tires).

Over the weekend we kept a tally of people who said hello to those who didn't on the Great Rivers trail.  12/17.  

Does this mean that people in the evening in Minneapolis are more Minnesota nice than morning people in Mendota?  I think it has more to do with the fact that I wasn't a grinning goon on an old French bike, but a fellow cyclist with the rubber side up.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

carmelized butter for cookies

Mmmmmm coffee.

In the foreground, over a low flame the butter is slowly melted.

Stirring is important to keep the butter from burning.  I have burnt it before and the smell is terrible.  Also the pan has to be washed before starting over.  Pain in the ass.

After the butter melts it doesn't seem to do anything at all.  FOR EVER!

Panic sets in.  Doubt runs rampant. and suddenly it turns from canary yellow to a light brown.

And then BAM! its done.  remove from heat and cool it in a bowl.

The coffee brewing in the background is the organic Laotian medium roast from J [ampersand] S.  

(why the hell can't I use the ampersand? code I'll bet.)


We made pizza. 

It was awesome.