Sunday, January 31, 2010

080: Belgian Waffles, Running Shoes, and Fairhill.

Diane and I walk into Delaware Running Company. Right away I notice this guy standing by the door dressed in black with the weirdest hearing aid I have ever seen. We walk over to the shoes and the owner comes over and starts to help Diane. I notice the only other guy in the store, is a tall, fit older dude. I walk by him and over to the compression socks. I glance back at the front door looking at the guy with the weird hearing aid. I look out the front of the store and notice two huge blacked out Suburbans.

Wait a minute, is that old dude? I walk over to Diane and whisper to her, " the dude at the door is secret service, the old dude behind us, that's Vice President Joe Biden. Don't turn around and look."
Diane immediately spins around and looks. She spins back to me, "yup that's him." She continues, "he looks much better in person than on TV." The store owner helps Diane some more, and Biden pays the clerk and turns to us as the owner says, " thank you sir."
Biden makes eye contact with Diane and I. She smiles and nods politely. Frankly, part of me wanted to shake his hand. The other part of me was kinda like, he's just a dude buying some shoes. So I winked at him, giving him one of these:
he smiled at me. Biden walked out of the store, followed by the big dude in black. They jumped into the suburbans, and sped away.

Diane got some new shoes. It was a good day.

The weekend was pretty solid. Saturday a killer group made up of K-man, Dennisbike, JHIII, Jan, Gavin, Nikki and I hit the trails at Fairhill. Jan had heard Gavin and Nikki were coming down to ride, and Jan flew in from California just sit on my wheel and complain. Actually, there was much more smiles than complaining from the German this weekend...
The ride was very fun. If you want to geek out on it, here are the details. About half way into the ride, I broke my chain. As I was fixing it, Gavin pulled out a bag a chocolate covered almonds to share. They were awesome. As I was working on my chain, K-man pointed out a pile of deer doo on the ground next to my tools. "be careful not to confuse the deer doo for the almonds, that would be very bad..." Everyone laughed...

As we finished up the 3 hour tour, I was pretty hammered. I might add that I think the Ladies, who were both on rigid single speeds, appeared to be unfazed.

The rest of us, on our geared, 29er suspended machines were doomed to an afternoon of bengay, vitamin i and laying around/napping completely destroyed. Okay, maybe it was just me.
Sunday we were up early and over to Jan's for the annual cross worlds party. Diane and I got so show off our sweet new waffle machine.
It was great to see Rotten and Scooter again. I gotta tell you, on the bike, Scooter is an animal, I can't count the number of times the dude has just destroyed me. The dude smells blood and turns the screws. Off the bike, I don't think there is a nicer guy. I swear he always has a smile on his face, and a kind word. Glad to be in the community with this guy... total class act...
thanks for reading...


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

079: wishing dexter on people.

I finish up my ride this morning and go up stairs to greet my lovely wife.
I walk into our bathroom...

Me: "Morning Monkey, how did you sleep?"

Monkey:" I had a horrible dream right before I woke up, I think it was because if you..."

Me: " come on, what did I do now?"

Monkey: "well, I had this awful dream that Paul Giamatti was chasing me..."

Me:"why was he chasing you? and how is Paul Giamatti my fault?"
Monkey:" I don't know, but Paul Giamatti was on this big ass tractor chasing me around, it was so loud."

Me: "what do you mean loud?"

Monkey: " when I woke up, I realized the noise was still coming, and was a little freaked out. Then I realized it wasn't Paul Giamatti chasing me on a tractor, but you riding the rollers making the noise."

Me: "err. sorry babe... Paul Giamatti huh?"

might be time to service my rollers, or at least take any Paul Giamatti movies off of our netflix queue.

thanks for reading.


Sunday, January 24, 2010

078: Simple Little Things...

The simple things blog thread is flowing through the blogosphere faster than the Hot Wings I ate last night. Judi queued me in. I'll play along. This blog game is just one giant slam book after all...

simple things that make me happy. No particular order.

(1) Quiet time with Diane. A hug in the kitchen. A gentle kiss in the bathroom.
holding hands in the car. Watching a movie together and talking shit. Eating Ben and Jerry's
on the couch Sunday evening. (that's kinda become a weekly tradition)
(2) Wool hats. They are warm. they cover my hair when it is tremendously bad.

(3) Hot Coffee. Particularly in the morning. little cream, lots of sugar. It just makes me happy.

(4) White Shoes. Clogs, sneakers, cycling shoes it doesn't matter. White Shoes put the "p"
in PIMP.

(5) The dogs. They eat, they sleep, they fart, they wrestle, one air licks, one steals my pillow at
night. They are pretty awesome.
(6) Music. Love finding something new to love, love hearing something old to appreciate. It can
get me all fired up, or just mellow me out a bit...

(7) My parents. In the last few months Diane and I have had a few occasions to just sit and talk
with my parents about the world, traveling and what's going on in our lives. Just quiet and
really nice. My family has a strange dynamic. These conversations were exceptional. That
was cool.

(8) Career. I work for a great company, that puts people first. One of my leaders has said to me
a number of times "every decision we make impacts 140 families". She is sincere. It is real. It
changes everything for me from a work standpoint.

(9) Family. All my cool nieces and nephews. Yeah it gets a little crazy sometimes, but it's the fun
kind of chaos. My outlaws too. Brothers, And Brother in law and Sister-in laws are pretty amazing people.

(10) Cycling Community: Nor Del is deep in cycling talent, and cool people. I'm lucky to have
wonderful mountainbike riding and roads and groups. The folks are always great to be
around, and the culture is just incredible. Douche Factor is very low. LWeb said to me once that the best thing about cycling is all the diverse people, with different backgrounds and different upbringings that cycling brings together for a common good. I couldn't say that better, so I won't.
(11) Kris and Chris. Getting to be a part of C3 has been huge for me. Getting to work with
Mayhew has been a rewarding, and very good experience as well. Both of these things came
together at a time when I was questioning my involvement in bike racing. Both were
unexpected and very serendipitous. I am lucky to have my C3 teammates, and Kris and
Chris in my cycling life.

(12) Victoria's Secret. Nothing is better than shopping for underwear with my wife. Shorting
through piles of underwear, "what do you think about this one?" "how about this one?" My
choices tend to be less functional than hers. I'm like a kid in a candy shop I always enjoy
that trip.

(13) Home Grown Cafe. My favorite restaurant. Always a great beer and a great meal. Dirty Hippies too. Punk Rock Waitresses. The Hostesses call teh college kids the "little monsters"

(14) Living just outside of a small college town.

(15) Christmas Cards. I love the entire process. Working with Diane to develop our card for the year, pulling together the list, sending the cards, getting them from friends, and Diane displaying them around the house. Generally speaking I'm not a holiday guy, and I generally hate cards for occasions. Christmas cards are the exception. Like mini year in review for a number of friends...

You know, maybe I'll consider riding a bike this week and actually have something to talk about, you know bike related. That might not be too much to expect...

thanks for reading.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

077: now i know how Joan of Arc felt...

When I was an adolescent, I remember being angry all the time. Just feeling full of angst and dissatisfaction. I felt like an outsider, that I was different than the other kids. I know that angst is normal, but I had a weird chip on my shoulder for really no reason that I have been able to identify.

I have shared this before, but I clearly remember my first grade teacher, Ms. Morris saying to me in front of the class, “ this is Marc with a C. He is different from the other Mark’s, they spell their names with a “K” .” Yeah I was pretty much fucked from then on.
From the time I was 14 on, I kinda just went with it, and followed the skate culture. I wrestled most of those years too. Nothing like wrestling to alleviate angst, self confidence issues and for no godly reason having a chip on my shoulder.

At about the time I turned 26 or so, I found some confidence that I never really had before. As I started my career, I realized the fact that I was “kinda different” as one of my VP’s said to me, was a strength, not a weakness. Years of looking at things from a different perspective, having a slightly different view of the world made me succeed pretty quickly. That coupled with the fact that most of the folks I worked with at that sweat shop were pretty much incompetent didn’t hurt either…
But, I digress. The gist of this writing is this: From time to time I find myself dipping back into my old collection of music. Lots of Morrisey, Love and Rockets, the cult, the Cure and Jesus and Mary Chain. I will admit Music always affects me. It influences my mood, and the more and more I listed to that stuff sometimes I feel start to feel angst, start to feel pissed off at the world again.

This spawns a few questions:

So did I become a pissed off skater kid because of the music or did the music just become something I related to?

As an adult, a pretty well adjusted, very confident (almost cocky), very happy adult I might add, why does the music invoke so many of the feelings I had as a kid? Does the music spurn memories? Or does it really just affect me that way?

Kinda of weird.
I have long said that I train from a dark place. I like training and racing from there. Racing bikes is fun, but it’s hard. I like that hurt. I like that darkness. Fuck, who gets up at five in the morning to do intervals for an hour without turning the crank in anger at some point.
Anyway, that’s what I’m thinking about today…


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

076: Auer vs. Layla


that is all.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

075: cake eating sharks

Monkey: "So what's the deal with your sideburns?"

Me: "what do you mean?"

Monkey: "I mean, I know you think that your sideburns make you a faster bike rider, I know they are your MOJO, but really you don't have a race until September.."

Me: "Michael Angelo has the Sistine Chapel, Van Gogh has the starry night, these sideburns are my master piece, seriously the best set I have ever had"

Monkey:" Your sideburns are a sand castle, yeah you build them the tide washes them away, you build them again...."

Me: "point taken..."

I think I can stretch this out until the C3 Athletes Serving Athletes Silent Auction at the end of the month.

In the last couple of weeks a number of folks have asked about the DCCofD Prom that Monk and have hosted the past few years. It's been a bit of a crazy fall, and we have decided to not have our little gathering this year. Just wanted to put that out there, as one really good guy was afraid that he didn't get invited for some strange reason this year. Not the case at all... Much like the Tour of Georgia, I expect we'll return for 2011.

Friday Night a nice group of us headed to Iron Hill Brewery to talk some smack, share some stories and enjoy a fine ale, and fine company. the Howard Brown, Amy, Dan Mc, JW, BL Rich, Elizabeth, Breyla-la, Tenacious Colin, and Kim joined Monkey and I, as we had a great night...
Saturday was Mark the Shark's 50th birthday, a very nice group showed up for a 50 mile jaunt around Southern Chester County. Of course as we got close to home, the pace jumped up some. Must have been the cake luring us all home. Group was too big to list everyone...

Dudes in tights eating cake;Sitting in:Fun stuff.


Thursday, January 14, 2010

074: black belt in photo shop

My recent experiences tell me that the white stuff on the edges has been providing wonderful traction. My instincts and 15 years of night riding tell me exactly the opposite. Recent rides have been a battle against myself, my recently gained knowledge, versus my instinct to not rely on any additional traction as a crutch.

The past few weeks the trails here, hardened by the serve cold, have been magnificent. The traction can only be described as superhuman. It is my observation and frankly my belief that trails this cold, have better traction, better hook up than at any time, during any drought during the summer. It has been an amazing few weeks of riding.

Jeffy cover up your fucking light.

Rittenhouse tonight was tough. We had fun, but on the way out I was reminded how unskilled of a mountainbiker I am now a days. Thankfully coming back with a little more trail knowledge, I found a little more flow. Of course Jeff rode it on his cross bike making all of us look silly.

Laura Van Gilder fundraiser, get info here.


Sunday, January 10, 2010


What is the MAC PROM?

A short answer is that it is the awards banquet for the series winners of the MAC series.

That, however, would be an incomplete answer. It truly is a gathering of the tribe. People who love cross and love competing against each other gather together one last time to celebrate the season past, try to figure out what people look like without sunglasses, lycra and helmets, and party it down. Truth be told the awards are such a small and minor part of the night.

I will admit, I was a little lubricated this night. Monkey, Tom Mc, and I were grateful to have a junior racer that could drive us all home safely.

quick impressions:

Fergie received a well deserved Life Time Achievement award for his contributions to cross. How much he may have impacted the cross scene here, may never truly be measured. The roar of the crowd when LVG was called up as the series champion was unreal. Supersweet new team championship mugs, great promoters meeting... Yes, I did throw my wife under the bus at the meeting, but what I said was true, it totally sounded different in my head... Mike Hebe has great vision, and the series is getting stronger totally going in the right direction. Got lots of good feedback on the Tauntaun, which is cool. We have just a great community of people that I am really proud to be a part of.

Anthony has some rad pictures here. The rest are my blurry memories:

My apologies for any extra obnoxiousness, or "I love you mans" I may have launched on anyone.

Ladies and gentleman, Your MAC Series Promoters:

Bad Kat and Bad Andy are, well really, really bad.
Danielle, Kelly and Hailey kept things rolling. Hailey drew the winners from the raffle.
teammate and Rockburn/Schooley Mill promoter Matt B. Great guy.
Okay, I'm just a little lubricated in this shot.

Kim and one hot monkey:
Lindsey and my new teammates Anne Rock and Jimmy Mauer!
More of the family Cline. How can you go wrong here?
Big Time Glenn Turner..
Really two of my favorite people in the world, Lindsey and my teammate Diane the diesel.
Crazy Human Zoomers!
C3 Athletes Serving Athletes Chicks.
the next generation of MAC leaders? Fast kids today for sure.
I heart Tom Mckay. Tom with his date Liz.
Heidi and Melanie. Happy faces everywhere!
The Dr. Warner team...
Nicki who has challenged me to mullet contest for 2010, with her wife Maris.
Remember on the Cosby show when Mr. and Mrs. Cos had a "smooth" off contest, and Mrs. Cos had a broken leg? Breyla-la would have won that contest easily, here with Kim Dubeck.
Melanie and Sven Nystrom, all smiles...
My friend and team director Auer Pants, along with Life Time Achievement Award winner and friend Greg Ferguson, but you can call him "Fergie".
hot chick whose name I forget, Wes, Regan, Hebe and Cara all having a great time.
My hero Dennis Smith:
Auer and Melanie:
And the "I love you mans" are just getting started:
Jake and Alysssa sad at the news that Diane and I aren't having our winter party this year.
They are of course welcome to crash at our place anytime...
The world's greatest designated driver ever. (thanks Jeffy)
The Benders. Zach is the MAC U19 Elite Junior Champion (he's on the right)
the Morgans, Eric saved my ass a number of times this season, and is great to work with
on the MAC series.
Bad Andy about to tell me that he loves me.
LVG and Gavin share some stories
Tom McKay one of Diane and my favorite house guests this fall. He's gonna fly in 2010.
Rob and Kristina Collins, Benny the Jeweler your 2009 Master's 3 Champion.

That guy in the background isn't the unibomber, but the founder and visionary behind MAC Cross, and much of how things in east coast cross are run now. The guy gets it. His name is Dr. Andrew
The other Mark V and Anne Rock...
C3 and friends moved the party down to Le Bus for some more shenanigans.

Tom admiring Kim's sweet boots.
Smiles abound on a great night...

Bad Andy is about to give me the finger. Go watch him race on rollers in Lancaster next week...can't hardly wait for next season...