Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Brig asked me if I thought about living somewhere else than Bend. Well I have to say I have. When George was elected the second time I was ready to leave the states.  I don't think I would have, and now that most people see our President for who he is I don't feel that anymore. I answered Brig - that Bend is the best place I have ever been to. I have lived here for over 30 years. I have been to most states, many different countries and for me Bend is the best. Not too big but big enough. This doesn't mean I like everything that has happened in Bend. I still like most things.
As most of you know I love to mountain bike. I like being in the woods, I love being on a bike, and I love the technical bits. Going over rocks, steep downhills and windy descents. I also like not driving. No, it has little to do with $4 dollar a gallon gas. I just think driving is a waste of life. I have done my share. I once had a 90 mile one way commute to work (now it is a 2 minute bike ride). I think most time spent in a car is non-productive. The photo shows how long it takes to get to real single track from my house. This does not include the 5 minutes of single track on the way to the trail. This is where you can ride single track for hours on end. The kind I like, up, down, dusty, wet whatever.  I love the Ochocos, the MacKenzie and  Umpqua Rivers. I do them once a year. I would do them more but for the drive. I usually quit skiing at the end of February. I know there is lots of good skiing left, but I look at the bike and I look at the car and the bike wins. 
So for me Bend is the best place. Great trails close by, no need to drive. I love it.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Veronica Vega is my team mate  
and friend. We have gone to a few bike races together, a movie and she lets me practice my Spanish with her. She is the one who looks a bit serious in the middle of the photo with the yellow Sunnyside Jersey on.
We also went to the same University (Humboldt State), I was there 30 years before her.
Earlier this year our team had a little incident about one of our riders not stopping to help out a rider in need on the side of the road. Veronica was pretty vocal in her belief that we should always stop to help a fellow cyclist. Well on Sunday she proved how deeply she felt about that. We were at the Bear Springs Mountain Bike Race near Mt Hood. She is an expert woman and so started with the pro men, pro women etc. About half way in her race, while she was in first place, she came upon one her teammates in distress (Mike Schindler). He had flatted for the second time and did not have a tube. She stopped, took out her supplies and gave them to Mike. Mike then told her to go on. He would return the pump after the race. 
I came upon the scene a few minutes later (I too was leading my race). I grunted at Mike and then a few yards later I saw Veronica. I managed another grunt and kept going. Veronica was standing on the side of trail and she encouraged me on. 
What I didn't know is she had just crashed and bent her derailleur and she figured she was done for the day. Well after Mike got his flat fixed he came on her again (she was walking by this time). He asked her what was wrong, and when he found out he bent back the derailleur. This is called good Karma. She rallied back to finish second. 
I could have stopped for either rider but didn't. I probably would have if they would have asked. Veronica did not need to be asked, and Mike well he had no choice but to return a favor. 
I have been racing mountain bikes as long or longer than anyone in the State of Oregon. One would think I have nothing new to learn, but on Sunday I learned more of what it is to be a teammate. 
Gracias por la leccion la Senorita Vega. 

Monday, May 19, 2008

My Mom and Pies

Here we are in the middle of Mountain bike race season and it 
is finally warm. But somethings are more important. Last weekend was Mothers day, no it was not warm. It snowed here in Bend for a brief moment in fact. Yes I did a mountain bike race (Chainbreaker). In the morning, though I got up extra early and made a cherry pie. I like making pies (see an earlier blog). I like to eat them also. But when I do I seem to gain a pound or two.  Mothers day is special. My mom lives next door to me. I don't always spend enough time with her. Work is busy, PPP time you know. I like to Mountain bike race so I do that. We did have a nice mothers day dinner and she really liked my pie. (just a note I make the pie Kathy makes them look like art).  This week we have no PPP and no races. I will go over and set her sprinklers (a few days late) and visit some. I may even make another pie.

Saturday, May 10, 2008


I've met Lance, but I don't know him, I've met Levi and Eddy but I don't know them. Greg Lemond has been in the store and I have a photo with him. That is quite a few. But Christian Vande Velde well I can't say we are  on a first name basis, but I did have dinner with him, met him on a ride out of Girona, Spain and his wife was our tour guide for a week. He was in Bend the year Lance won the Cascade Cycling Classic (1998). He told me Bend was on his long list of places to live. 
I will say this, he is a super nice guy. Loved chatting with us. Did not mind having his photo taken with me. Looks like he knows how to smile more than me. 
I think it is really cool that he is the leader of the Giro de Italia (as of 5/10/08). Velonews called it a lifetime achievement award. He certainly deserves it. His teammates called him the strongest. His team included three national tt champions (Ryder Hesjedal, David Millar and David Zabriskie. Very impressive. 
I am stoked to have met Christian, I will now be watching the Giro with a new light. You might want to watch it also. We will be showing at Sunnyside in the mornings on Italian RAI international tv. It is in Italian, but you will love the way they say Paolo Bettini. Call us for times as it is not consistent. 

Monday, May 5, 2008


  • These are my newest and oldest friends. I will start with John. He is not the oldest person I know, I have just been riding mountain bikes with him longer than anyone else. We started together. Basically when mountain bikes came out of the closet and into the forest. I think this was around 1983 or so. I think I started racing one year before John, but we have been on the same team the for over 20 years. First Sunnyside, then Bridgestone and of course Sunnyside  again. We don't keep track of who is better. He finishes ahead of me, I finish ahead of him. No egos here, just friendship. More talk than most men I would say. He built my first Sunnyside Building, he built my first deck. He put in most of my double pane windows. He comes to the store to hang out. When he noticed that some other nordic skiers were wearing a competitors logo on their jackets he came and got a Sunnyside one . Like I said he is my friend. That is him with his new Trek.
  • I can't possibly count the number of bikes he has got from me. Treks, Bridgestones, GTs, more Treks. We ride together a lot. Long rides, short rides, mainly mountain bikes. We both like to road ride but our hearts are with our mountain bikes. We don't do bad for a couple of near 60 year olds (me a little younger he a little older). I can't wait for the snow to clear so we can ride in the high country. We have a special lunch place we stop above Tumulo Creek to look over the cliff to see Central Oregon.  I like to stop there and remember all the rides and all the friends I have. 
  • Eifa is my newest friend. I haven't met her yet, I have met her older sister Ione. This photo was so cute I had to use it. Eifa is 5 days old, weighs in at 6.15 pounds and is Scottish. I was in Scotland last year to visit Ione and her parents Pete and Ali, and also to deliver Ione her first bike (a Skuut). I think Pete ended up with a bike also. Now we have to return and see our newest friend. 
  • Friends are important. Do not neglect them. Nurture your friendships and you will be rewarded.


Thursday, May 1, 2008

Happiness, Longevity , Health and Peace

Today is our 37th anniversary. It really doesn't seem that long. I just saw A Fiddler on the Roof and in one of the songs they were singing about 25 long years. That was 12 years ago. I don't even feel like I am 37 years old. Though I will say the guy in the mirror looks a lot like my Dad. 

Currently I am reading this book, and in it the heroine has to solve a puzzle.  They are at a monastery in China and she has to put into order of importance the following, Health, Longevity, Peace and Happiness. If you looked at the title of my blog you will know the answer. As far as our marriage goes we have had all four of those and I would say in the proper order, Happiness (for sure), Longevity (37 years out of a total of 57 (my age))again for sure. Healthy. We have done pretty darn good on that one also. And peace. If one of your favorite activities is sitting by a fire with a kitty on your lap, like mine then peace for sure. I feel those four sum up what we have done.  I was just writing a younger friend and I was hoping he would have what we have. 

Mountain bike season is on us (or at least me). I will start doing some posts on my favorite outdoor activity. But the cool thing is yesterday I cleared a technical section I had never managed to clear before. It really doesn't matter where it was (the steep switch backs going out of Shevlin to Mrazek), but that even now I can improve my riding. I try to be cautious   but I know if Kathy saw me riding she would think I was more insane than cautious. I will say it felt good. Now I have to see if I can do it again. 
Thanks for reading.