Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The daily cruise

Mudflat Love. Photo by Bearbait

Three straight days of bike commuting this week, thanks to a favorable schedule. I usually can't ride this regularly when my kids are in school and needing rides to various places, etc. My Tacoma hasn't backed out of the garage since last Saturday. I'm on a roll. Screw you, Big Oil.

My luck runs out Thursday, though. I have to report for grand jury duty. Be afraid, be very, very afraid: They're letting people like me participate in the judicial system. Or maybe not. They could boot me out on the first day. It's just state grand jury ... if they'd let me be on a federal grand jury and vote to indict that bastard Karl Rove, I'd pay them.

Speaking of bad boys in D.C., that hound dog Clinton has been out of office all these years and still can't keep his hands off the chicks in the White House. At least his taste is improving. Slightly.

I don't mean to rag on the old guy. I voted for him twice and would have voted for him a third time if I could have. Sure, he got a hummer on the job, but who cares? That was his and Hillary's business, not ours. Besides, he had time for a little hanky panky amid all that peace and prosperity that burdened us during his terms in office. Given a choice between news stories about skanky interns and news stories about unjustified war, I prefer the sluts, thank you very much.

As long as we're discussing the legal system, if I were on his jury I'd vote this guy guilty as hell, but I'd hope he got a couple of days knocked off his sentence for having a sense of humor. Then again, I've never had a positive experience on a bike when riding near a redneck and his truck, so fuck him.

Just to keep this string of posts with bike photos rolling, I'm treating my faithful readers (note my optimistic use of the plural) to another shot from Bearbait, one of our local Pugsley maniacs. The shot above is from his recent post on the mtbr.com Alaska forum. It was taken over the weekend during a ride across the Anchorage mudflats now that they're frozen and passable by bike. In the summer, just walking out on the mudflats is enough to prompt the fire department to send rescuers to haul your butt in. The mud is similar to quicksand and the flats flood with icy cold sea water when the tide rises. Death trap in summer; Pugsley playground in winter.

On the subject of winter riding, I'm loving my studded Nokians. I bought them last winter after some nasty falls with my shitty Schwalbe studs, and I've never felt so confident on ice . I have learned the hard way that cheap studs and homemade studs both suck. The Nokians cost about $100 per tire, but they grip ice like nothing else I've seen. Spending a C-note on a bike tire can seem a little insanse until you compare it to the cost of a trip to the emergency room. You just can't skimp on the gear that counts.

Speaking of new gear, my fellow blogger and bike-riding donut baker has been testing out some new stuff from Banjo Brothers that looks cool. I hadn't heard of them until recently but I'm hoping they'll manage to get their messenger bags in Alaska bike shops. I've been thinking about buying a bag and it would be nice to have an alternative to Timbuktu. I like their bags, but I also like having options.

Straying from bikes for a moment, I've been meaning to put up a link to a strange but brilliant band from the UK, and now that I'm typing a post with their music blasting through my iBook and headphones, it seems like a good time. I discovered Alabama 3 a couple of months ago by listening to shared iTunes playlists on the network at my office. A young woman I know across the hall has a couple of their "country acid-house music" CDs on her computer. I know almost nothing about them, other than the fact they look like some scary freaks in their "mug shots" and their "Exile On Cold Harbor Lane" album is one of the freshest things I've heard in a long time. A little country, a little techno, a little gospel, a shitload of fun.

Surrender yourself to the all-powerful, almighty, all-wise Rev. D. Wayne Love.

That's it. I'm done. Let's go back to church.

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