Friday, March 27, 2009


I always knew that the yearly Cleveland International Film Festival drew large crowds. But, last night before we viewed a screening of Chaser, the festival workers informed us that they broke the one-day attendance record on Wednesday by about 800 tickets. Turns out the 10-day festival sold over 50,000 tickets last year. It is very encouraging to hear of crowds like that (especially in this economy) and feel the excitement in the air over independent cinema. The most amusing thing about the whole experience is the amount of (friendly) yelling by the workers and volunteers and the (controlled) chaos that exists as the they try to herd hundreds of people (and sometimes more) into the correct lines and correct theaters during the busy evening screenings.

Here's a trailer for Chaser. I tried to find one without this cheesy narrator, but all of the other ones were not in English and did not have subtitles.

The movie was great, but probably not a feelgood first date movie. Or a second date movie. Or a tenth date movie...especially if you met your date through an escort service.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Wednesday Night Throwdown

Seven people. Some rain. Wind. Steep hills. A dirt road section. Lots of rollers. Attacks. Returning with two fewer guys than we left with. 50 miles at the end of the day.

It doesn't get much better.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Ramona needs a home

We are housing a five year old female black and tan coonhound named Ramona. Some nice person pulled her from a rural shelter before she was to be euthanized, and we agreed to provide a foster home for her.

She is a mighty fine beast.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

3 observations from a ride on St. Patrick's day

1. Fewer drunkards on the road than expected.

2. The lady who pulled in front of us at the bottom of the big hill while talking on her cell phone and lighting a cig does not deserve to be driving a car. (This incident may actually contradict my point #1, but cannot be confirmed).

3. I was more than amused when a bunch of John Carroll co-eds yelled out of their car at me, "Hey, there's the guy who dumped Cheryl Crow!!"

Guilty as charged. She was too high maintenance for me.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Nowhere to Hide (Mid-Ohio)

Thom D., Jason H., Tom K., and myself represented TeamSpin in the 15 person Cat 1-2-3 field at the Mid-Ohio sports car course. 20 laps and 50 miles of great pavement, wind, hills, and a bunch of really fast dudes.

Thom made the early and decisive break with Jeremy G. and Tris. He then fell off the pace, became part of the chase group, and finished 6th. A mighty effort, and a mighty strong early bridge to the break.

Jason and I toiled in what was left of the field after we missed the second move of the race.

Tom K. rode valiantly (his first time on the bike all year!!) and got a free ride with the 3-4 field after losing contact during one of many surges in our field.

The road racing season is now in full swing, and the fast guys are still fast. Just in case you were wondering.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

A new opportunity

The grade school aged boy was attempting to mount the horse as we entered the riding area. The staff and volunteers provided assistance and loads of encouragement. After a few tense moments, the boy overcame his fear and was in the saddle. The horse then started gently walking around the arena with volunteers flanking each side of the boy, who now appeared to be having a grand old time. The whole scene was pretty self-explanatory and a privilege to watch. Then one of the volunteers approached us, barely able to contain her excitement. She proudly exclaimed to us that the boy had been there several times before, but this was the first time he actually got on a horse. The joy and enthusiasm in the air was obvious, as was the fact that Katie and I made the right decision to volunteer at a therapeutic horse riding center that serves both children and adults with disabilities.

My experience with horses is quite limited, but I am told that they will properly train me to do everything I need to do. Actually, my horse experience consists of crying my eyes out at age 3 after being placed on a donkey that was sitting still. I also almost cried my eyes out at age 7 or 8 when I rode a horse for the first (and only) time in my life. Now that I think about it, I might be able to empathize with some of the kids who are apprehensive, as we may have a bit in common.

But not that much in common...their courage far exceeds mine.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Who would have thought?

In a shocking turn of events, Rush Limbaugh has moronic things to say about bicyclists on the road:

Frankly, if the [car] door opens into a bicycle rider I won't care. I think they ought to be off the streets and on the sidewalk. Don't misunderstand here, you bike riders, do not misunderstand this, but I mean if you're going to get in the street, get over there, get over as far right in the lane as you can. You ought to see Saturday morning where I live. It looks like a swarm of mosquitoes. It causes you to take an alternate route.

Full text here after scrolling down to story #8.

Given the vice grip this man holds on the minds of many Americans, I wouldn't be surprised by a sudden uptick in motorist hostility towards cyclists.

By the way, did I just link my blog to Rush Limbaugh's page? Awesome!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Feelgood story of the day

While out riding today, some guy with a (non-ironic) pornstache driving a yellow Mustang passed me way too close for comfort. It was on an area of road where there was no reason for such a close pass. Surprisingly, I refrained from telling him a thing or two about etiquette and safety.

A half mile later, Pornstache was pulled over by a Shaker Heights police officer and received a speeding ticket.

At that point, my good day just got better.

Sunday, March 01, 2009


You know you're a pretty big cycling nerd when your Sunday morning is made by the fact that you can eat breakfast while watching a live bootleg video feed of Kuurne-Brussel-Kuurne. In a language you don't understand.

Not that I would know or anything.