Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sunday, May 27

We had the last of the CAT2 series and it was a ride on the flats to Tiburon for lunch and Marguaritas at Guyma's and then back on the ferry.  There isn't a lot at Guyma's for poor Vegan Joseph to eat so I skipped lunch and went riding instead.  But everybody else seemed to have a great time:

Sandra and Michael Fantasia


Ben who was smart enough to wear a hat.  I didn't and looked like a freakshow. 


Here's Ian who was evidently up to no good.  At least that's what I'm telling people.


Here's Ed and I don't know the other guy's name.  I don't know what they're doing.  That's not how Tyra taught us to do it on America's Next Top Model:


This is how you pose for the camera.  How adorable is he??  So adorable.









Horrible, horrible hair.  I'm trying to be all rough trade with the beard.  Number of people fooled = 0.


There's Annette sitting next to the always glamorous Julie Brown.  Annette has a blog too!  Check it out!  She's worked really hard this year and I'm really proud of her:

 Annette's Blog



Here we are with Peter who didn't get lost on the way to Tiburon.  No, seriously.


After I left lunch I took Trestle Glen over to Paradise Drive and then made my way to Fairfax.  I took Fairfax-Bolinas road out to Alpine Dam lake and then up Mount Tam and then down to Bolinas bay.  Then I continued down to Stinson Beach and then I took Panoramic back up Mount Tam and then down into Mill Valley.  So basically I did it twice.  My camera died at Alpine Dam lake but I did manage one pic:



I got home around six and found that while I'd been biking Mr. Poe had been down in Serramonte negotiating a new car to replace his 10 year old Acura I fondly referred to as "The deathtrap".  I'm kinda sorry I missed it.  Mr. Poe isn't known for paying too much for things so I'm sure the poor dealer was probably in tears by the time he drove it off the lot.  Here he is with his new ride.  Hello gorgeous!

Tuesday, May 22

I took last week very easy because I wanted to rest up a little bit before the ride.  I toured the Marina a little after work on Tuesday and took pictures of this interesting building







And then my favorite Victorian mansion on Alamo Square:



Before heading home on Scott.  You can see the huge building going up on Rincon Hill from pretty much everywhere in the city:



And here's an apartment building with beautiful detail on it:


Monday, May 21, 2007

Sunday, May 20

We did the Marshall wall ride in the CAT2 series today and it was really hard.  The route itself is 96 miles with a lot of climbing but it was made a lot more difficult by a ferocious headwind that dogged us for the first half of the day.  We had a lot of problems early on as well.  A rider had FIVE flat tires by Sausalito.  We couldn't find the problem and kept changing them until we realized that tire itself was the problem not something stuck in it.  The metal wires in the tire had begun to separate from the rubber and in addition there was at least one hole in the tire and rubber was peeling off of the inside in strips.  I've seen this before when I tried to ride my Dad's old bike after it had sat unused in a hot garage for many years, but this tire was supposedly new.  We had to leave him in Sausalito because his bike wasn't going anywhere and he went to go get coffee and wait for his boyfriend to pick him up.  We were far behind all the other riders by this point and everybody had left by the time we got to Fairfax so we kept moving.  We finally caught up with some riders on White's Hill.  And we rode into Nicasio.  There were a few riders there but they were moving as well so we just stopped for a minute. 

We swept the last of the riders into the Cheese Factory where thankfully we were able to hang out for a few minutes and I coughed down as much food as I could.  That snarky bitch Kurt Schade made some comment about me making him look straight.  I think
not.  The only way he could get any gayer would involve heels and a
wig.  Besides, I could totally pass for rough trade so long as I
neither speak ... nor move. Anyway, here's a pic of him posing with a large banana:



After Cheese Factory, we headed off for Marshall.  There's a very long climb to the top of the coastal mountains and then a steep descent down to Marshall which sits on Bolinas Bay.  There was maybe a 40 MPH headwind that was giving a lot of the riders a pretty tough time the whole way up the hill.  It blew me off the road at one point.  Yikes!  It was a bit of a disappointment, because the hill is hard on a good day but the beautiful view from the top makes it so worth it, but the howling wind made it way to unpleasant at the top to enjoy it.  So I just took a quick pic and headed down the hill:



Once we got down to the bay and headed south on the 1, we had that crazy wind at our back and everyone cheered up quite a bit.  Lunch at Point Reyes Station was pretty brief because we were so late getting there and because the cool, windy weather made people not want to linger.  We headed over Olema hill and into Samuel P Taylor Park.  We stopped to wait for some riders who were resting:



And then we headed back to Fairfax.  A tree came down in front of us as we headed out of the park.  Yes it was that windy.  There weren't any riders in Fairafax either so I quickly ate a granola bar and carried my soda with me and we took off.  We had a pretty uneventful ride back to sports basement where everybody, myself included, was pretty relieved that the day was over:







I hadn't eaten enough and it was dogging me all day.  I got home where Jeffery had prepared me an enormous dinner which I consumed in it's entirety plus additional food.  Then I went to bed.  Total Mileage: 102.  Mileage for the week 230:
Saturday, May 19

I slept in a little and then went to an awards ceremony for Mr. Poe's work.  Afterwards we went to Lombardi to go pick up my bike.  They got the hub changed and the bearing replaced and only charged my $60 but the new bike shop manager still throws off that used car salesman vibe and I can't imagine I'll be going back.  Upon further inspection, the mechanic did some fine tuning that I wasn't charged for.  I don't think he likes his new boss's behavior either.  I went to bed pretty early because Sunday was going to be a big day.

Friday, May 18

I was off the bike all day, the first day I'd taken off in a couple of weeks.  I worked from home because I had a doctors appointment and it was just easier to negotiate from home than from the financial district.  My doctor told me that I'm in great shape and everything's looking good.  My BMI is within an acceptable range so all you bitches who have been telling me I'm too thin can just fuck off.  I also had to take my bike back to Lombardi which I totally didn't want to do but they didn't have the parts at REI and they were my best shot.  That same guy was there and he promised to try to get the work done pretty quickly.  His jaw just about hit the floor when I told him that I knew exactly what was wrong with the wheel because I'd taken it to REI but they didn't have the parts.  I think he realized that he'd been such a jerk it had sent me elsewhere.  I went home after and got some more work done and then went to go hang out with my pal Wilfredo.  We watched the assembly video for the bike I've been looking at and you need to break it down into many many more pieces than I thought you did before packing it up and it looks really complicated and time consuming and I'm having second thoughts as to whether that's going to be the bike for me.  Which is why I start thinking about these things a year before I get them in the first place. After I left Wilfredo, I took BART down to union square for my quarterly blonding.  Here are the pics:

     

     



And one of my tireless glamour technician Anthony who was totally wiped out from dispensing so much beauty:



I got home pretty late and had to work a bit more.  How can a day off the bike be so exhausting?? Total Mileage: 0
Thursday, May 17

I went home for lunch but didn't get out of work until late.  By the time I showed up for class, everybody, instructor included was gone.  So I've now missed the last two classes before the final.  It's like my worst nightmare except I was wearing pants!  Mileage: 25

Thursday, May 17, 2007

I was back on my commuter bike this morning and it's not as fast as my road bike but it's so comfortable and easy to ride.  It was very cold this morning.  I headed out to Ocean Beach on Taravel as I've been doing and then headed up to the palace of the Legion of Honor.  The fog was starting to burn off a lot earlier than it has in the last couple of days.  Here's that weird sculpture I don't understand:



and the weird performance piece I understand even less:



I headed down through Seacliff to Lake and then down Lake to Arguello and then to Clay.  I took some photos of the beautiful synagogue on Arguello at Clay.  It has a lot of very interesting Architectural detail:








I took Clay to Stiener and then down past St. Dominics.  The sun had come out and it looked bery beautiful:





Then I continued down Post into work.
Wednesday, May 16

A little less gloomy than Tuesday but it was still cold and foggy.  I did the same ride I'd done the day before.  Coming into Seacliff, I saw the fog starting to thin a bit on the bridge:



I didn't hit any more rogue pine cones on my way through the Presidio and thus was spared any injury.  The sun was just starting to peek through when I was at the top of Clay:



As I headed down I saw one of our iconic cable cars at Powell:



I headed home for lunch and then back to work.  I had my second try at Lombardi's after work since they'd all gone home the day before.  The problem seems to be a bit more severe than I'd thought.  I was hoping all I needed was a gear adjustment, but something's wrong with the hub in my rear wheel as well.  There's a new shop manager at Lombardi's and I didn't like him at all.  He actually said to me "A bicycle is a lot like a car.  You have to take care of it or it will fall apart."  I spend so much time working on my bikes I don't even want to think about it and if I've got parts wearing out it's because I ride my bikes a lot not because I'm not taking care of them.  He was rude, arrogant, and condescending.  It made me angry and reminded me very much of the mechanics who worked on my old Saab in New Mexico who always had this "L'il lady, this is gonna cost ya" attitude.  It made my skin crawl.  He then proceeded to get the mechanic to work on my bike without telling me what he was doing or how much it was going to cost.  When you spend as much money on your bikes every year as I do, you learn pretty quickly to always find out what they're going to charge you before you let them do anything.  I thought it was pretty unprofessional and when I asked him what it was going to cost he was completely noncommittal and I started thinking again about those Albuquerque auto mechanics.  So I made some excuses and got the hell out of there.  And then I skipped my class and took my road bike to REI where the rest of my bikes go where they were friendly, polite, and didn't bristle when I asked them how much they were going to charge me.  I think the worst case scenario at REI is going to end up being cheaper than the best case scenario at Lombardi.  So now I've broken up with Lombardi.  Partly because that new manager was such a jerk and partly because REI is so much more convenient to get to and is open til 9.  It's always tough to end a relationship.  I'll bet Lombardi gets over it and starts seeing other customers soon.  I'll be looking for a new bike I can't get it REI in the spring and I believe I'll be looking up an ald acquaintance name Mike south of Market when that time comes.  Total Mileage: 28
Tuesday, May 15

Man was it ever foggy this morning.  The riding was pretty gloomy but I was happy to be out on my bike.  Here's the gorgeous view from the top of Corbett:



Soakin' up that California sunshine!  I went out the beach which was below the fog so it wasn't all that miserable but it was still pretty cold.  Then I headed up the Great Highway up over Geary and to the Palace of the Legion of Honor.  Then through Seacliff and into the Presidio.  I almost wiped out at Baker Beach and when I doubled back to find out what I'd hit it was this giant comedy sized pine cone.  Unbelievable!  I airborn over a pine cone??  Then I headed up along the coast and caught this ominous view of the bridge:



Then out the Lombad gate and then Greenwich to Polk to Clay and up over Russian hill throught Chinatown and down into work.  I headed home over lunch.  Chris and Sofi were hanging out there because he's getting new floors put in at his place.  Mimi loves bossing Sofi around.  Hey, better her than me.  After work I headed over to Lombardi to get my road biked tweaked and the mechanics had already gone home.  Which kind of sucked. Then I headed down Polk to Turk to Laguna to Market and home.  Total Mileage:  25

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Monday, May 15

I woke up to terrible weather.  Cold, damp, dismal, with a gloomy fog hanging low in the trees.  This can mean only one thing:  summer has arrived in San Francisco.  I rode anyway out my usual route to the beach then up to the Palace of the Legion of Honor and then down Lake to Clay to Broderick to Post and into work.  I went home for lunch and the sun was out but it was cold and windy and then came back to work via REI south of Market.  After work, I headed over the bridge and up Conzelman.  The fog was just rolling in and it was incredibly windy--  they should change the name to Marin HeadWINDS.  I almost turned around because I was afraid of what that wind could do on my way down but I continued.  This picture was taken by an incredulous woman who couldn't believe people were riding their bikes up such a steep hill in such crazy wind:



Amazingly, the wind was much less of a bother on the ocean side than the bay and when I started descending down to Point Bonita I didn't have any problems at all.  The view of Rodeo Beach was stunning:



Then I headed up the valley, up Ike Turner Hill, back down Conzelman and then I went down to Fort Baker where you get the coolest view of the bridge:



Then it was up to the bridge and then back to San Francisco.  Then I went down to Crissy Field, through the Marina where that headwind which had hammered me the whole way out was now at my back and propelling me along at 20mph with no effort.  Then up over Fort Mason and down to the Embarcadero.  There was an enormous cruise ship docked there:



Cruise ships are really cool looking because they are so massive which is something it's hard to grasp when you're on one.  I totally got hooted at by a carload of hot women who not coincidentally received the "Barking Up the Wrong Tree" award for May 14, 2007.  I continued along Embarcadero to Howard and then 5th to Market and then up Market back home. Total Mileage 50.8

Monday, May 14, 2007

Sunday, May 12

Sunday's weather was a lot nicer than Saturday's and the riders mostly had a great day.  We went out to China Camp which is a gorgeous park near San Rafael and then up Lucas Valley into Nicasio and then out to Point Reyes Station and then home through Lagunitas.  I started out kind of fast because I needed to get to the first big turn in San Anselmo and make sure that riders didn't miss it.  I waited for the sweep and then headed through San Rafael out to China Camp. 



After China Camp the rode wound back through San Rafael where there's this fabulous Civic Center that I believe is Frank Lloyd Wright designed:





It's so fabulously futuristic.  Not the way the future is, but the way the future was going to be fifty years ago.  Love, love, love it.  From there, we continued through suburban sprawl up to Lucas Valley and then up to our first stop which looks like nothing from the outside but seems to produce amazing lunches for our riders.  There was a little black poodle running around hoping somebody would order him a sandwich:



So cute!  Here's Bob
Olszewski and his new boyfriend who's riding for the first time this year:



From there, we began to climb to the top of Lucas Valley.  I got ahead
of some of the riders so that I could get some pictures.  Don't we have
the best looking riders?



















We stopped in Nicasio and I viewed a rather astonishing sight that I'd rather not relate on my blog.  From there we were off to Point Reyes Station.  Here's Tia looking lunchtime delighted:



Ben and I were sweeping so we waited at lunch for quite a while before heading down the 1 to Olema and then up over Olema hill into Samuel P Taylor Park.  Then up the bike path into the campground.  There, some of the riders were taking a break:







Then up through Lagunitas and over White's hill and into Fairfax.  A rider not on our ride had a pretty serious accident on White's Hill and some of the riders were pretty rattled by it.  I had Jeff come up from San Francisco to pick up one of the riders who'd had enough for the day so we had to wait around for him to get out to Fairfax.  While we were waiting, this freaky guy who looked like a cross between Jesus and Charles Manson decided to park his nearly naked ass near enough to us that I could take pictures of him.  I had a rider pose for me so that he wouldn't know that I was documenting his freakness:





Yikes!  Jeff came and picked up the rider before out Jesus Manson had removed any more of his clothing and we headed back to San Francisco.  We caught up with Dorothy at Mike's Bike's in Sausalito where she'd had THREE flat tires since Fairfax!  That totally sucks. I found this tiny piece of glass in her tire that she'd missed that was causing them and Ben got her tire fixed and headed back to San Francisco.  She's such trouper.  There's nothing worse than getting flat after flat after flat.  But she was still smiling!  She's my hero!



We made it back to Sports Basement around 6:45 and I was home a little later.  Jeff had made me a huge dinner which I consumed very quickly.  He's been so great during this training season!  I've been riding pretty much all the time and he's been doing pretty much all the cooking, cleaning, and laundry.  He's also been stuck taking Sofi to the dog park this weekend because I've been on training rides the whole time.  AND he came and collected a rider!  He hardly complains about all of this all the time.  After dinner, we went to the dog park with Sofi and I went to bed.  Total Mileage: 94.  Total Mileage for the week: 355