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Thread: The Lounge of Terrestrial Wheelmen

  1. #3711
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
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    Last night, Friday, some neighbors had a get-together. They call it Drinks On The Driveway. Parents talk and kids play and dogs run around and such is life in the suburbs. It's August in Colorado, and that meant people were putting on sweaters and running home to change from shorts into long pants before the night was over. "The nights are coming down", as my mother used to say in Vermont, speaking of the cool nights that become noticeable toward the end of summer.

    A neighbor who I've known for years was there. When I was riding my bike to work regularly at my last job, I saw him often on the trails. My ride to work was five miles and I've seen him (and waved and said hello) everywhere along the way. I was always riding and he was always jogging. He is always jogging. I see him run past our house often, since we live one house away from the start of a popular gravel trail. I've known him, not well, but as a guy I see at neighborhood parties and so forth, for eleven years, now that I think of it. I always figured he was a few years older than me. Maybe early or mid-fifties now. He wears glasses, as have I for 38 years, but he doesn't have much grey hair and he's certainly in great physical condition, so early or mid-fifties would have been my guess, not that I ever thought much about it, until last night.

    And I've seen him on his bike, occasionally. He seems to be much more of a runner than a cyclist, but he has a white bike with teal decals that looked quite "nineties" to me when I've seen it, as in the 1990s, the decade in which both my bikes were manufactured as well. Teal = '90s, right?

    Well, we got to talking last night, fueled by a few beers, not that that matters, but just to set the scene, and I was talking to the guy who was hosting the party - he and his wife, ya know. He has what I'd guess to be a 2000s-decade Trek aluminum mountain bike hanging from the ceiling in his garage and also what I'd guess to be a late-'80s road bike with downtube shifters. It might be a Lotus. Something with an L is the brand, I think. He said he got it in college, and he's my age, which is why I say late '80s.

    He was the guy who showed me how to pump air into a tube with a Presta valve (and loaned me his pump to do so) after another friend gave me my road bike, since I had never seen nor was I equipped at the time to put air in such a strange beast. Yet, despite all my cajoling, I've never been able to convince the host of last night's party to pull one of his bikes down from his garage ceiling and ride with me. Okay, that's fine, but at least I've asked.

    In an off-topic sidebar, he's the guy who owned that beautiful, very low mileage, dark green '98 Honda Accord V6 that I considered buying to replace my tired '99 Accord some time back, that I posted about in some other thread around here. My '99 is still running strong, in case anyone's wondering. Hardly, I can hear you all saying, but surely anyone who knows my writing style won't be surprised by a second or third tangent in an already long and boring story.

    Well, the first guy I mentioned in this rambling post, the runner, and I decided to go riding on Sunday (tomorrow) at 10:00 AM. He said he has a regular loop he rides that takes a few hours to complete, and he mentioned some landmarks that are farther away than I've ever ridden. No, we won't be climbing Pike's Peak or riding all the way to downtown Denver, but it sounds like a long ride. I'm really looking forward to this.

    So, as we were all sitting around on lawn chairs in the garage, by this time, someone asked him what the writing on his tee shirt said. He moved his arms and we could all see it was some kind of shirt you get for running a marathon. He is a very modest man and it took much cajoling from the wine-filled women in the group for him to explain he had won his age group in the marathon he had run to earn that particular shirt. He laughed and said he didn't know that until much later when he saw the official list and his name as the winner in what he called the "62 to 99 age group".

    My wife blurted out, "so how old are you anyway?" and he said he'll turn 66 in October.

    So, I'll be riding with a very fit 65-year-old man tomorrow. I'll take a picture or two if the opportunity arises. I know I can ride for a few hours without embarrassing myself, and this surely isn't a competition, but I guess I was just amazed when this man started telling us - only after being asked - about all the marathons he has completed in his life. It was a very large number, and he looks great for his age.
    Last edited by George; August 6th, 2016 at 10:26 AM.

  2. #3712
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    Wishing I could ride this weekend. Actually, really wishing I could get up in the mountains, but a ride would be a close second.

    Currently stuck at the house while our shower is demolished.

  3. #3713
    What fresh hell is this? overpowered's Avatar
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  4. #3714
    Director Freude am Fahren's Avatar
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    These Olympic bike races are nuts.
    Spoiler:
    Both the men's and women's leaders crashed out on the final decent. I'm not sure I didn't just watch the leader of the female race die.

    Then both leaders are caught in the last km.
    Last edited by Freude am Fahren; August 7th, 2016 at 11:06 AM.

  5. #3715
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
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    Maybe I should...

    (Olympic spoiler and a mention of my ride today is below, playing off something in Freude am Fahren's spoiler above)

    Spoiler:


    ...try out for the Olympics, 'cause I can fall off my bike with the best of 'em!

    Ouch.

    Gruesome blood and gore pictures below.

    Spoiler:


    Yes, I landed on my chin, as you can see. I guess that's what they mean by a "face plant". Maybe I'll grow a beard for the winter, since I won't be shaving that area for a while. I haven't had one a couple of years, so it might be fun to do again.

    My bicycle was undamaged.

    My friend's bike turned out to be a Specialized Crossroads hybrid, like my wife's, only a bit older, I think. Flat bar, 700c wheels, and a seven-speed in back. He mentioned he bought it twenty years ago and it cost $500. He said his wife gave him a hard time for spending so much money on a bike but now that he has ridden it for twenty years, she no longer minds.

    After our ride, he mentioned it won't go into the lowest or highest gear - I forget which, and he was just telling me, not showing me. Next weekend he's going to bring it over for an adjustment. He said he's never changed the cables. I still have lots of new cable housing from when I bought a roll to do my mountain bike last year, and I'll buy the necessary cables one day this this week. I'll surprise him with all new cables and housing next weekend, if he'll let me install them, which I assume he will. Having done it once before, I'm pretty confident I won't screw it up, but ya never know.


    DSC01276.jpgDSC01279.jpg



  6. #3716
    What fresh hell is this? overpowered's Avatar
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    OK George. You wanted pictures. Today's ride.

    Spoiler:

    From the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista:



    With Lower Otay Reservoir in the background. Apparently I wasn't supposed to be in this area. A security guard chased me off about 5-10 minutes after this:







    See that mound in the background and to the right? That's made of salt. This is a place where they extract salt from the water in the south part of San Diego Bay and that's a field of salt that's almost ready to be harvested right in front me.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Bay_Salt_Works



    Saw some horse back riders on my way to Border Field State Park, near the Tijuana River:



    The border:



    The bull fighting stadium just on the other side of the border:



    Lots of people enjoying the beach in Mexico, but nobody on the beach on the U.S. side. Islands in the background.



  7. #3717
    Ask me about my bottom br
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    Once I was walking on the beach I wandered off into the U.S.; I used to live like a mile and a half south of the (not so yuge) fence.

    Coming from a more tropical part of Mexico, the desert-meets-the-ocean landscape always seemed a bit a eerie.
    acket.

  8. #3718
    What fresh hell is this? overpowered's Avatar
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    That fence that goes into the water used to be a bit more sparse. It was basically telephone poles in the water with lots of gaps. Little kids used to stare at border patrol and step over and then step back as a game. Kind of hard to do that now.

  9. #3719
    Senior Member G'day Mate's Avatar
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    Which of those is Trump's wall?

  10. #3720
    What fresh hell is this? overpowered's Avatar
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    Those are fences, not walls.

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