Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Plan in Pencil

As I look back over last year and begin to plan my way through 2016, one thing is clear. I need to plan in pencil. Plans, goals, dreams, or whatever you want to call them sure have a way of changing, vaporizing, or fading. This time last year I was planning to ride the Amish Roubaix (not in shape), the Wayne Ultra (event was cancelled), the Hilly Billy (days of rain), bikepack my way to Davis WV (injury of other rider) and try to get a motorcycle camping trip in. This, of course, is in addition to some sort of family vacation and the normal busyness of life. I will be honest, these targets are largely centered around myself. So, when there are questions, challenges, or compromises, these are the things that go. I have not written much in the last year either. I have had my fill of social media and honestly had very little motivation to write. I had decided to write more with a pen (in a notebook). That has happened even less, as in, not at all.

My logs say I rode 1,720 miles, climbed almost 98,000 feet, and burned 85,000 calories. (Interesting side note, while generally I think my Garmin unit overestimates my calories, this number would equate to about 24 pounds of weight.) I have done more, I have done less. Highlights? Another Gravel Rouser Wolfman, I did win a race this year (technically, I was the only one in my class), I made it half way across WV and camped at least one night by bike, I was taken down by a dog on a road ride, and I bought a geared mountain bike.

Yes, after riding rigid and single speed for years, I added a geared bike. I had to turn my gravel bike (Redline d440) back in to a mountain bike for Ethan who out grew his 26" Monocog in less than a year. I spent weeks reading about bikes, geometries, tire size, frame material, and so on. I had considered the new Cannondale F-Si 29 and the new Beast of the East (27+), the Ritchey P-29 as well as some full suspension offerings. All to settle on another Redline, a d660 carbon framed, 2x10 with a Reba 100 mm front fork. It weighs slightly less than my steel Monocog Flight 29er, It handles fast, pedals faster, and is comfortable for a long time (compared to my SS). I have really noticed that my upper body isn't as tired after a ride compared to my Monocog.

Sadly, after returning to work following the Christmas shutdown we were greeted with a large round of lay offs (about 20% of our staff). I was spared, though in such a small company, my coworkers were also my friends and it sure stings.

The future is a bit uncertain, at least from our earthly perspective.

Unboxing the Redline d660 at the Cycle Path

Our kind of happy hour at Fluff Bakery

Fun with phase diagrams.

New shirt, though apparently it isn't work appropriate.

Christmas Kale thanks to a warm December.


StreSS relief with the SS.


Winter sunrise.

I think he is doing it wrong?

Brock: can we go to Casa?
Things Brock has said this year that was worth writing down:
--
Me: Brock, what shape is the moon?
Brock: It's a crescent.
Me: Right.
Brock: What is it made of?
Me: Rocks.
Brock: How do you know?
Me: Astronauts have been there.
Brock: I want to be an astronaut.
Me: OK
Brock: A dinosaur astronaut.
Me: Of course, that goes without saying.
--
Brock: I will definitely use my listening voice when I go to kindergarten.
--
Brock: I just counted to 100! That's like a million numbers!
--
My Dad (after taking him to see Mountain Stage for his birthday): Oh, I thought Mountain Stage was a bluegrass band.

Happy 2016
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