Too much time open eyes,
Clarity fades as the road,
Rises to meet my tires.



Aside from developing a growing fetish for nicer tires (it's not entirely sexual) I dropped a pedal yesterday. No crash or real consequence other than scuffed pedal and little hop in the rear wheel. A moment's inattention. Not like I wasn't paying attention. Just rolling along but it made me think-stupid, I know. I have these wonderful bicylces to ride and I think I take good care of them but is there more I could do, either for me or the bikes? Right now I'm sleeping well, 15 hour training weeks take care of that. I'm eating well, not too much. Good coffee and treats as treats. Not daily, though more than I should, or deserve. The scent of cross is not in the air yet> I think the word is that CX this year is going to be big. Maybe a budget for travel, maybe nats in Bend? Maybe my ass on the line for a race outside CO? The equipment is shaping up, bikes? Check. Wheels? Almost. Tires? Yeah, those are the aforementioned fetish that develops in a head that is never clear of another thought of something that may or may not matter at least in the meantime but in the present it's one more fun thing to ruminate on. Now the Tour begins Saturday, evening TV for 3 weeks. All of the early rides are paying off. Form is here for summer stuff, singlespeeds offer precious little shelter, if you're sucking, it's clear. If you're not sucking- it's only slightly obvious. Last week, I didn't suck that bad. Always something else to strive for. One more reason to avoid the treats and get out of bed before a reasonable person should be out of bed. 4:30 a.m. rides? Check. It's summer, get out of the window now while you can.


Bits to chunks

The little pieces of pedal are getting bigger by the day, more and more time in the chamois has the head a lot more quiet. Sleep comes in welcomed chunks instead of bits. The pedals turn at a good pace and with the time sinks all around I manage my time.


Clearly racing and the time constraints it creates isn't for everyone. The more I prepare myself and get out and do the work the more I feel good about it. I know it's unlikely to make a dent in much of anything except for the bumper of that next car to pull out too fast as I roll by. I wouldn't know what to do if I didn't do it. I likely would stop sleeping all together, function in a sort of ether that consisted 20 minute naps and incessant nausea. Instead, I ride.



I'm not overly friendly when I ride. I try to be polite and respectful, try to show courtesy, while I enjoy the solitude. After all, I mostly ride alone and foster the sheer joy that I am out riding, again, mostly alone. Yesterday long was relative, not having the mid season form a lot of guys have I went up and over Vail Pass, into Vail and flipped, on the way back down into Copper I saw a guy on a singlespeed road bike (not fixed, single, silly) drafting the big fat guy I see around the county that has no sense of polite greeting. Mind you, he was sporting a 2010 BMC team kit. I passed the 2 of them up high on the path and descended down into Copper at what I thought was a good pace, 5 minutes later, half way thru Copper, Fatty buzzes me, no greeting, no polite wave, not a thing. Whatever, the fat clown passed the skinny one on a wide open section of road when he couldn't get his cattle ass around the tighter corners up high. I let them go, they began to descend into Frisco, I went and found a Nutrageous at the Conoco, I had earned it.



I'm afraid, everyday I see the fade coming, whether it's the car that passes too close or the cyclist coming the other way on the path, always wondering what's going to take me out next. Maybe it's more of a slow burn, slow to fade out, time expires and I'm left there, caught out, somewhere in the middle between the family, the bike and the job. making the best decisions with at least the first on the list. Touch the fade and it clears up, like an instant photo on an old Kodak. Slowly focusing and slowly becoming clear, what passes as crystal clear these days. They say a baby sees everything without a tint because new vision is the clearest, all these years I'm sure have fried mine, I can only see as clear as I can. It has to be enough.


Turn around

The motivation is like a revolving door, always bringing in new air to mix with the stale stench of what didn't get done. The faster the door turns around the slower I seem to go. I need more time at my time, this whole getting up as the coyotes and fox go to sleep gets tough. Bed feels good even at 5 am in almost broad daylight. The door turns again. I wish the pedals turned over so easily.


Some days you just can't go far enough away from the center, Looking out at the horizon, it moves away as fast as you go. Never getting quite there, I want to get it just once. Once.



Rolling around on one engine that is slowly failing, The other seems OK, ticking thru the motions at it's own pace. Crisp sunny days grow appreciation for what is now, what is here. All along the cold days were building to this, slower than I want to be, The warm days pass too fast. Lines being drawn across weeks of sun, Leading to the Season.



Unclear eyes and too many creatures going to bed when I should still have been in there. I was out already as the raccoon the size of a 1st grader was going back to his.



I don't want to have an excuse, and I guess by merely saying that I lack any. My races and training stand on their own merit, I don't have any kickstands, crutches or subtle push on the small of my back. I do what I can, when I can, and go from there. Nearly 20 years of chasing something I can't quite identify isn't slowing the drive, I don't feel like giving up, I relish the suffering more now that it is slightly less frequent. Riding up another pass, watching the marmots watch me, spotting the big horn sheep farther up than I care to go on a road bike I let my mind wander away from the wheezing in my lungs and push to go deeper and detach my head from everything else. Turn up the headphones, let it fall away and pedal higher. I like the simplicity now more than ever, the inner dialogue is not visiting a quieting place, I look for more challenges to pedal through, to go deeper into what I think I can do. Anonymous as a shadow rolling, the pedals that put the head at a little bit of rest, let the legs try to quiet it down this time. Next time it might be the other way around.


I found a little bit out there the other day, somewhere near the end of the 5th hour a light went on. It was clearer than I have seen in a long time and the bulb shone brighter than I even expected. Something about going out that far knowing full well when I got back in the day wasn't done. It added up to a great effort and the pedals and wheels turned over in my head to be. Not being a distance guy this made me want more, always more.