Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Nothing New

Just cause I know you are addicted to blogs.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Still Raining

I guess it shouldn't be a surprise that it's raining here in the PNW. Sadly, it's sapping my already low motivation to ride my bike. This is the 1st Memorial Weekend I haven't spent at Round and Round's 24 Hour race. In fact it's the first year since 2002 I haven't done a 24 Hour race at all. I had planned to do Nationals but honestly just don't care. It was fun while I was getting back into riding/racing but road was always my first love.

Well, actually baseball was my first love. And before you ask, no the Mariner's will not win the division or make the playoffs. They suck. The will win 3 and lose 3-4.

Wanna get some eyewear? Looks like we'll be at the Peninsula Metric Century next week. My prediction? Rain. If I can get Steve to cover I might split and go do Alcatraz as well.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Murdin comes good

Murdin is brilliant. He rolled off the front of the break with maybe 1K to go last night and held on for the win. It was a good move, taking advantage of what was full-on poker mode in the break and a bit of inexperience.

And, frankly, Murdin showed why it pays not to be a dick. I was in perfect position to chase hime down but chose not to. One reason was knowing that if I did his teammate would be glued to my wheel and I was not at all sure I could out ride him for 1K. The other reason is I like Murdin. There are certain riders that, at a subconcious level, I would have chased just to prevent them from winnning.

With the exception of Tucker, I am sure variations of this calculous took place in everyone's head.

So Murdin's win was the complete package for victory. Good job.

Personally, I was surprised to even be in the break. I hadn't riden in 5 days and felt like crap. I had strength, but no snap which showed in the sprint as I only managed 2nd from the group for 3rd on the night.

I was disappointed, but not bad considering I wasn't event planning on racing for a month. That plan may change, cause it looks like I won't be able to do a weekend race for 2 months or so.. a PR specialist? Naw.. I just can't save enough energy down there. And I am not strong enough to attack all night and still win without a lot of luck.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Uh Oh

You won't have Manolo Saiz to piss on your mother's grave anymore.

Update 5/25.

AmEx Sux

Yes they do. tells the story better than I do. All I can add is that over the 5-6 month period we had an AmEx card they displayed an amazing inability to provide even a moderate level of knowledgible support, an inability to fix problems they created and a strong desire to focus on blame rather than solutions.

We are still trying to resolve 4 issues with them. Caught in their blame game, I finally gave up and methodically showed them how 3 of the issues are clearly their "fault." Amazinngly, after admitting fault (apparently there are some known bugs in AmEx's reconciliation systems) they refused to correct the issues saying "it's no big deal, it only has a minor impact on your credit rating". In addition to being hypocritical it also is a bit disconcerting to realize that a company won't correct it's mistakes even when it admits to them.

Updated: One of the issues was a supposed late payment. According to AmEx's records, we made no payment during the January billing cycle of '06. However, I was able to show that in fact we had paid by using our bank records. This shows the actual date AmEx recieved their money. The payment was supposedly a day late eventhough the bank statement clearly shows the money was settled with AmEx prior to the due date. Their response was that when their online system settles with their primary accounting system there can be a discrepency of up to 48 hours between when the actual payment was processed and the date posted for that payment on the backend.

To be clear, this is not the 24-48 hour timeframe it may take to withdraw funds after setting up an online payment (that's another issue). This is a discrepency between when the payment is actually processed and withdrawn from the customers bank account and the date for which you are credited for that payment.

Oh, and eventhough it's a known issue and they actually did recieve the payment before the due date they refused to fix it because "it was no big deal".

Given AmEx's history (see here for an example) I can't help but wonder if this is one of those bugs that just conveniently allows them to collect fines and increase interest rates without most people being aware. Given the history and extensive number of class actions and fines AmEx has paid for these types of things my personal opinion is that they have at some level concluded that they will make more money by playing games and paying fines when they get caught. I don't see any reason to give them the benefit of the doubt.

Update 2:
Just for reference the other 2 issues are:
Sending us past due notices for $0. That's right, $0. So we are being reported for being past due $0 on our credit report. How exactly do we pay $0? Apparently we need to get them $0 right away. This one baffled them too. I was advised not to worry about it. It'll "go away". I am skeptical.

Paying us 30 days late on credit card settlements to our merchant account. Which is ironic isn't it? I wouldn't be surprised if I get a letter cancelling our merchant account over fictional chargebacks.

Saturday, May 20, 2006


As I transition from racing to working I was looking forward to the weekend in CA. We'll be doing the UVAS triathlon vendor expo and I was expecting a nice little event. Got in just in time for the rain to start. Great. Nothing sells eyewear like rain.

On the otherhand, I've been reading The Moral Animal by Wright. So the new big glass fad makes sense.. apparently men universally find big eyes and small noses attractive.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Race Break

Well, part 1 of the season is in the books for me. It began with the bizarre RV trip to Valley of the Sun and ended with a DNF in the Malaga Road Race stage of the State Omnium.

Unlike Kenny, I can't handle 130 races in 3 months so I am taking a break from racing. I had hoped for a couple weeks, but looking at the work schedule it may be closer to 6 weeks. That's right, P-Dog may be stuck doing PR and Seward until July. The next race I might be able to do is Tour de Nez. That ought to be fun, first race back and 1 road, 1 TT and 2 pro/1 crits. Su-weeeet.

So far let's see...

The Good:
Being able to give away a stage of Wenatchee (ok, it was Master A but I've never been in that position before.. it's a good thing you won Michael!)
Making the winning break at Elma
Setting up Erik at Sequim and then making the 2nd group.
Setting Mark up for 2nd at Master Road
Learning to sprint
Washington Cup.. ok that was as an organizer

The Bad:
No Podiums (a couple 4ths though)
Wheel/Tire problems
Getting sick right before Rainier Roubaix

The Ugly:
Walla Walla road stage. Must find legs; I think they are still out in a field somehwere
Ronde Ohop: exploding into oblivion at my own race
Losing my temper in the Master A crit.. even if the recipient deserved it.

So from now on rather than cycling you, my dear reader, will get to read about how frustrating I find large corporations and the joys of running a small business!

Monday, May 15, 2006

President Gore

He's got my vote.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

I am not yelling at you....

Just wanted to let anyone who was in a break with me at PR know that I wasn't trying to yell at you. I just recognize that the field is faster this year meaning there is no time to screw around. I also realize that most guys are not experienced riding in the break. So far, guys have been willing to work. But a lot of guys are either going through too hard *or* trying to go through and then pulling off from 2nd wheel.

It's better to ride through at tempo.. if you accelerate it opens a gap that the next rider has to close. And when you pull off 2nd wheel, it forces the 3rd wheel to accelerate to get around gapping the 4th wheel... all of which can appear to the 1st wheel as people not pulling through at all. So if you need to rest, sit off the back wheel just enough that the rider coming back can see the gap before he gets ther and move into the rotation.

Monday, May 08, 2006

I know how you feel

Via Soup. Apparently the pressure of racing Cat 2 was too much on this poor soul. I know I've felt like giving up; but usually I get over it after the first 2 miles of the race.....

What Would Aidan Do?

If he felt like I did he'd tell the following joke:

"Why did Dad go to the Doctor?"
"Cause he felt a little crummy!"
maniacal laughter.

It makes more sense if you are 5.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

State Post Race

Well, both State Road Races are in the books and I have pretty mixed personal feelings. I was hoping for more out of the senior race. The course is good for me and our team. The climb is hard, but not decisive in my opinion. The real selection is the farm road near at the bottom of the descent. It usually has a nice cross wind, is windy and narrow and strings things out. It usually weeds things out.

We launched several attacks at the start, with Shawn Ongers going solo for about a lap and a half. Good on him. I tried to cover moves, as did Ethan and Mark but I realized after the 3rd time though that the wind was coming from dead ahead on the country road meaning that the field was riding easy while we killed ourselves at the front.

Steve Holland crashed at the start of the 4th time up, breaking his collarbone and some ribs (which given how it looked was better than I thought it would be). A good break went but we neutralized with 3 to go because they were still attending Steve. We restarted at the feedzone climb and about half the field was dropped. I can't help but wonder if we hadn't neutralized if we would have reduced the group to maybe 20, instead of 30-40.

With 2 to go the climb was ridden tempo, no attacks. Then we neutralized and stopepd for 10-15 minutes at the country road while medics attended to Ben Kaplan, who suffered a compound fracture in a crash. Apparently, he clipped out to avoid a crash and got hit from behind. Ouch. Anyway, that meant we got to start up again and race, 40 strong (I suspect some chasing riders caught up with us) in a 7 mile dash to the finish.

I tried to go with Mick and then chased Andrew in hopes that one of our riders was feeling better than me. Shawn went again but got caught at the feedzone and The Valley ramped it up. I ended up just coasting up to the finish.

All in all one of the wierdest races I've ever done. There were about 10 moves that just died that looked good to me. Not sure what happened other than the headwind.

State Masters went better. The field was about 26 riders, lap one was OK. Doug Davis attacked and we sent Erik up to him. Some attacks, drops and surges later and Doug was off with Andy Lund, Chris Torgeson and 2 or 3 other guys. Mark went after it. Michael and I sat at the front and decided to let Mark play his hand. Of course Kenny went right then. I took a strong pull and then let Michael go after him with Murdin. It looked good but Kenny dropped Murdin and Emde on the climb. Crap, I went balls out to get up to them with a few other guys. We caught Mark and ended up chasing balls out for 3 laps. Kenny dropped everyone in the original break to win by 5 days, while Mark took out the sprint for 2nd place. Awesome. I don't know how Michael did; I got dropped with 1 to go but we can both honestly say we buried ourselves for Mark. He's an awesome guy and I could tell he was strong and it was deserved payback for his unselfish work.

Next week State Omnium. The decision, Masters or Cat 1/2. Can I just stay home? There's a climb mommy!

Saturday, May 06, 2006


The State Road Race starts in 4 hours or so and I am one nervous puppy.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Lazy Fridays

I am looking at my calendar and man will I have one busy summer. Yet as I sit here blogging while mini-me eats his oatmeal I can't help but just feel pretty damn chill. The calm before the storm perhaps but calm nonetheless.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Farscape is strange

Yes, very very strange.