Saturday, January 4, 2014

And Awaaaaaaaaay we go!

Here we go into the brand spanking new year! Only 2 days at work last week and it felt like 5! BUSY BUSY BUSY is the order of the day for me. I traveled almost 2000 miles in my car over the first 10 days of the break (visited Arizona and Nevada....Jeannie had to work) home last Sunday, on Monday I drove down to Ventura to meet my brother Greg and his friends for a nice 75 mile road bike ride, and then he last 2 days of 2013 I spent mostly working on the kitchen tile (the travertine backsplash)...that is SO much work...those 4" tiles cover the wall OH so slowly...I'm about 95% done now...about a quarter of the way on the final two rows (the top)...and being a diagonal lay every tile in those last 2 rows needs to be cut. Measure measure measure cut check-fit bond into place, there's 2" that's covered, do it again, all while bending over as I'm working JUST under the cabinets....too low to stand and too high to go on my knees on the floor and reach. And if that wasn't enough we just had new carpet put into the master bedroom on Friday...meaning on Weds and Thurs eves I got to take all the shelving units and such out of the walk-in closet, THEN take all the furniture including the super-duper-one-of-a-kind hybrid sleep-number/memory foam king size bed AND the uber-strong frame I built for it (you could park a truck on it if it was big enough). THEN I got to rip all the carpet and padding out, and scrape the floor and vacuum vacuum vacuum so it was totally ready for carpet-guy on Friday morning. Sheesh...I'm tired all over again just READING about it. Then after work on Fri I got to start rebuilding...put the bed back in/together again, and move back in Jeannies marble-slab dresser (with large size mirror) AND marbles-slab night-stand (the slabs come off and are moved separately...the dresser slab is a BEAST). And then this morning (after my Saturday club bike ride) I find that her sleep-number bed air bladder leaked all its air out sometime this morning....she woke up pretty much lying on 2 pads of memory foam and a piece of plywood (that is the firm bottom for the air bladder). So AFTER I finished talking down all the Christmas lights outside (quite a job in itsself) I pulled the footboard off again, unzipped half the mattress cover so I could get to the air bladder, and couldn't find any I removed the quick-disconnect hose and re-connected it...hoping it just got tugged too hard during the mattress removal/reinstallation (quite a job also for the 2 of weighs a TON).

Needless to say, I'm TIRED. My back is sore (from the hunched over tile work for 2 days, not to mention all the lifting I've done for the carpet job).  Hopefully things ease off soon....I need to finish rebuilding the closet, then do whatever I can to the tiles before Jan 13th, when I once again head up to Sunnyvale to work at our Space Systems plant for 6 weeks. I'll be working the graveyard shift (11pm to 6am) so will bring both my road and mt bikes like I did last trip I worked that shift. Get off work and catch breakfast at the hotel, hit the sack for a few hours while traffic dies down, then get up and go for a ride for a few hours, get home before traffic picks up again, catch dinner and then snooze for a few more hours...get-up and go to work, repeat for 6 weeks. This will severely impact my viewing enjoyment of the upcoming Winter Olympics though....which saddens me greatly. We have SUCH an awesome crop of athletes ready to kick some SERIOUS hiney this should be awesome. Maybe on days I don't ride I can sleep all day and get up to watch some of the prime time events before going to work...that's probably my best option. I hope to get a LOT of riding time in though....I'm doing ok at the moment...not as strong as I'd like to be, but I'm probably in better shape than I have been in past January's (the holiday period always kills my riding).

One thing about the Holidays is that it's College Football bowl-season!  Lots and LOTS of games, most of them top-notch! I've been happy to see the Big Ten doing a bit better this year than in the past...loved the Rose Bowl! GO Michigan State!! I like to see some of the SEC teams get beat, as so many people seem to be on the "the SEC is the only REAL division, everybody else is just a poser" kick. And how about the University of Central Florida! (WHO you say?) Boy were THEY a pleasant surprise! As I've said...LOTS and lots of bowl games to enjoy. And we've still got the BCS championship to go...which SHOULD be a real great game! Florida State vs Auburn...GO AUBURN!!! (I was sad to see Bama get beat the other night...but it was qutie a game none-the-less).  I was stunned (as were most college football viewers) when Auburn beat Bama in the division championship....but Auburn is for real and earned I'm rooting for them to win it all! (especially considering they were pretty horrible last year).

And then we have Cycling season starting VERY soon also! The Tour Down Under is in like 2 weeks! And Horner doesn't have a ride yet! THAT is CRIMINAL!!!! I see he's been training in a black kit...(and he looks VERY thin and fit). Hopefully SOMEBODY will free up some cash and he will take it I'd imagine...better a low paying job than NO job...especially in the twilight of his career. What a sad bit of luck to be a Grand Tour winner when suddenly multiple teams fold and there is a plethora of World Tour points floating around for the grabbing...most any other year he'd have been snapped up by a team trying to score a slot in the World Tour. I'm rooting for him though, wherever he ends up. I'd love to see him do it again to prove it wasn't a fluke.

Lets see...what else is going on...oh, over at Fattys he/we wrapped up a HUGE World Bicycle Relief fundraiser on Dec 31st...we raised over $173.000, which is a LOT of money! And then there is some anonymous donor who matched dollar for dollar the entire month of Dec, so we technically raised TWICE that! There are 5 awesome bikes yet to be given away (and a cycling trip to Italy in April for a week)...I have a REALLY good feeling on this one....SRAM has stepped up and is providing all the components (top line stuff) for all the bikes....there's an Ibis Ripley carbon 29'er full suspension mtb, a Trek Madone project one road bike, either a Specialized Tarmac or Roubaix road bike, a Cannoncale CAAD10 road bike, and finally a Boom carbon hard-tail mtb. And the trip to Italy. Katie at WBR is doing the drawings and starting to notify the winners on the 7th (they draw a name, and don't draw another until that person has been reached to decide which gift he/she wants)...this goes on until all 6 GRAND Prizes are gone. As I said...I have a REALLY good feeling on this! I could really use a wicked awesome new road bike...or an Ibis Ripley, or even the Boom...(rather have a road bike I do WAY more road riding than mtb'ing). The trip would be nice, but I'd rather have a bike. So we shall see. I'm keeping all my fingers (and toes) crossed. Pretty much my best shot ever at getting an 8-10 thousand dollar bike.

OK. I"ll wrap this up and go get some dinner....tomorrow is closet and tile day for me...ugh. My back hurts just thinking about it. But the carpet is wonderful, and the tile is really looking great too. When I FINALLY finish I'll grout the kitchen and both bathrooms, and that will be that. Oh, then I need to replace the lighting fixtures in both bathrooms....we hate the ones we currently have. But that takes MORE money...and I'm broke...which is why I'm going on travel. Obviously I'd rather stay home with Jeannie and the babies...however being as this trip is so long they'll pay her gas to come up and visit for a weekend about week 3 or we're planning on that which will be nice. We've been meaning to get up to the Bay area ever since we moved here back in 02...but it's been one thing after another and it just hasn't happened.

With that I'll bid you goodnight, hoping that you have begun what will be a VERY Happy New Year!

Party on!


  1. Hey Brother! Just catching my breath before I dive back into this chain gang gig I am currently in... glad to hear that you and the pups are on an even keel. We take what we get and make the most of it.I have almost no road miles in recent memory and it shows. It shows. Something to work on. Steady on, Matt...


  2. Hurray! Horner got a contract! I was sort of hoping that BMC would take him on to replace Ballan, but wondered if he would be a good fit with their current slate of riders. I wonder even more how he will fit with Lampre; I don't think of that team as offering him great support in a grand tour. But, at least it is a team and a contract! Go Horner!

  3. I had read on Velo News about a week ago that the Lampre thing was likely to happen, but I didn't want to jinx him by talking about it...SO VERY VERY VERY VERY happy for him! And he will ride both the Giro and get to defend his title in the Vuelta!!! That is SUCH great news!!

  4. When you have a couple of minutes can you please contact either me or Donald please. Coming to CA in a couple of weeks...Janice