walking around in tap shoes and pyjamas since 2010 - my cycling log (opens in new window)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Bicycle Explosion

Last week, we bough two DesertBikes, bringing the total number of bikes in our garage up to 6.5 (I figure the tandem counts as 1.5 bikes).

Last night, I returned the beautiful silver Cannondale to its rightful owners, JL and KL.  At the same time, Swift returned home from their place -- with the opening of the new restaurant, KL's been working a bazillion hours a week and hasn't felt up to riding.  I can't say I blame her -- if I was working the hours she's working, on my feet all day, I probably wouldn't ride much, either.  I would simply be too tired.

I'm actually delighted to have Swift home.  As much as I like Turtle the SodaBike, Lord of the Desert, etc., I think Swift is a better grocery-getter, and it'll be nice to have a more comfortable machine around for DD -- one he can take on rides with me and Hg.  Likewise, Swift may wind up going out to BurningMan, since his components and wheelset will eventually going to need replacing anyway.  I'm not too worried about the alkaline dust messing up his frame, since I'm planning on stripping and repainting it at some point in the not-too-distant future, anyway.

At any rate, it now looks more or less like a bike factory blew up in our garage ... or maybe a bike museum, considering the diversity of makes and models in there.

I'm really struggling with the debate over purchasing a 'cross bike.  I now definitely have more than enough money to cover the purchase, but with our still-unplanned wedding looming ever-nearer, I'm having serious pangs of doubt about spending my money on what essentially amounts to yet another essentially unnecessary, purpose-specific bike (especially since, with the return of Swift, I've lost my 'but Denis will be able to ride it' justification -- Denis likes Swift just fine).

For that matter, I'm having serious pangs of doubt about dropping $60 on a racing license and another however much on entry fees.

The alternative is to re-home Swift, thus creating a necessity for a 'DD bike/backup bike/guest bike.'  I may yet do that.  In fact, I might even know someone who would like to have a bike like Swift, so he can keep up with me when I force him to play bicycle death march when he visits on longer rides when he visits and so he can do more long-distance riding at home in Lexington.  Or, for that matter, someone who would like a bike like Swift so he can ride at all (I actually have a non-bike riding friend who is interested in 'cross!!!).  Before doing that, though, I would want to swap out some of Swift's components, and maybe his wheelset, to make sure I'm handing off a bike that's going to be really reliable and ride-able for someone who isn't an experienced wrench and rider.

Of course, at this point, I really have until the middle of October to make up my mind about 'cross season anyway, since AppleCross and the OVCX opener are both out.

I am feeling a billion times better, but still wary of potentially exploding my spleen, which limits my ability to both train and race right now.  I'm back to riding on the road (a bit, anyway -- I think I knocked out a whopping 30 miles last week, if that, and I still get tired faster than is normal for me), but I do want to clear the 4 - 6 weeks from time of diagnosis before I seriously think about riding fast in a big, tight pack on the grass; hefting bikes over obstacles; and otherwise putting myself in situations where I'm more likely to fall and burst some important organ or another.  I still have a bit of tenderness in the spleenal area, so I don't really want to take unnecessary risks (especially since I don't have health insurance).

I really do want to do Bloomingcross and Storm the Greens, and I'd love to do King's Cross again, even though it is now, insanely, in December.  I figure racing on a a monstrous beast of a course like King's in December probably captures the spirit of the mad, bad ol' days of cyclocross...

...as well as anything in this modern day and age possibly could.

PS: Notice that the guys in the leftmost picture are wearing what more or less appear to be ladies' bathing suits.  Back then, it was probably a rule: I am sure that they did this simply to make 'cross even more psychologically demanding, and to ensure that only the toughest racers -- those most secure in their own masculinity -- would dare to approach the course.


  1. Too many bikes = a good problem to have. Even if there's still one missing. Hope you figure out the best way to handle it. Thing is, a 'cross bike would be excellent for RCCS-type rides, in addition to actual cross racing, so I don't think it has to fill as small a niche as you're thinking. Plus many 'cross frames are very versatile and can also be good for commuting, etc.

  2. "Thing is, a 'cross bike would be excellent for RCCS-type rides, in addition to actual cross racing, so I don't think it has to fill as small a niche as you're thinking."

    You know, you've got an excellent point there -- and with both a proper 'cross bike and Swift in the barn, DD could easily come along on shorter RCCS rides!

    Brilliant, man, you're clearly a genius!