Thursday, January 7, 2010


At lunch today, the southwestern skies were filled with heavy, flat gray clouds that seem to be harbingers of snow storms to come. We were in the midst of our warmest day in a week with the temperature headed toward a perfect snowfall range of the upper 20’s to low 30’s. These temps really provide for the proper moisture levels to get good heavy, wet snow, which is something that has been sorely missing around here for a number of years.

By 1:30 p.m., the snow was evident along the Balsams and Eagles Nest Mountain as the snow first began to fall at the 5500’+ elevations. By 3:30, the flurries had reached the valley floor and folk’s expectation of a snow became palpable. Now, as we head home, the flurries are heavier and the already cold ground and buildings are taking on yet another coat of white. Snow left over from our December 18th storm has finally survived until the next blanket appeared.

Of course, this means that, in my case, the skinny tire bike will stay in the house. I may have to break down and put it on my trainer because these last few days of bitterly cold (for around here) weather has won the battle for my dedication to riding. I’ve not been on the bike since the 1st.

One of my observations this morning would be the following:

That which shrinks slowly, expands quickly when attention is not paid. 

While searching my closet for the proper pair of pants, my eyes settled upon a recent acquisition at REI. I pulled my new gray pants from their hanger and proceeded to put them on one leg at a time just like everyone else I know. One leg in…the other leg in… pull uuup… With a grunt and a much needed inhalation, get ‘em buttoned and zipped. Exhale…. How did that happen? No, what is that? Turns out the old waist line has been REALLY enjoying all of that pizza lately.

Next brilliant observation:

One cannot eat while NOT working out as if one IS working out.

This seems very much akin to a much older brilliant observation I made during my self-imposed year of academic relief between my sophomore and junior years at Appalachian State University. That observation went something like this:

One cannot live in one’s mother’s house as if one were still living in a dormitory on a college campus…”

Thanks to some sage advice from my father, I learned that one pretty quickly.

So, having only a skinny tire bike, I’m relegated to reading a lot about riding rather than riding on this date. Some of my reading included the following and I pass it along to you “for what it’s worth.”

A sobering thought: The realities of skin cancer hit home on BikinginLA. Whether our destinies were set in motion with that first sunburn in our youth or become an issue in our middle ages due to the aggregate of our time outdoors, skin cancers are something that all cyclists and outdoors oriented persons should be ever vigilant about. Gone are the days of filling up baby oil with iodine and slathering ourselves with it to get that perfect tan. We should all be using a quality sun protector EVERY time we ride. Think about it…

A technical thought: My friend Jim over at Cycling Experiences is in the preparatory stages of a tour this coming June. He is sharing with us step-by-step details on his quad-ride-to-be that is being developed for him by the good folks at Utah Trikes. For a really well developed and technical journey on getting ready for this trip, jump on over and follow Jim’s path as he prepares for a great upcoming trip. While there, link on over to Utah Trikes and check out their product. For those of us who enjoy the techie side of cycling, Jim always provides a good read with lots of detail. Oh yeah, check back often as details of this trip get announced.

A sartorial thought: On a number of blogs that I read (Springfield Cyclist for one and mine for another), the topic of how best to dress for cold weather riding has been a well, hot topic, recently. To add to the quantity of the discussion, if not the quality, I offer the “lil black dress” as an appropriate cold weather riding option. Check out one example of this at The Fat Cyclist. See Fatty’s January 4th post. Here’s a little sumpin, sumpin to encourage you to consider your own sartorial splendor…

LilBlackDress(Heather’s image courtesy of

So, on this note, I bid thee adieu and begin my trek home for the evening where I know I’ll be greeted with wagging tales and slobbering mouths from Zeke and Orla. Oh yeah, I guess I’ll ride the trainer tonight…


Until later,

- Zeke

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