Sunday, August 28, 2011

Let's Ride

As I was getting into 'where do I want to go' mode Sal asked if I wanted to go for a ride. It would be her first of the year, my fault not hers. So we headed out at about 11am under sunny skies and a perfect temperature. Around to the bike path, through Chapples Golf course and I was heading for Tims but she suggested the Burger Barn. That would involve some street riding but if she was game then why not. We were able to ride the bike lanes for about 50% of the way and being Sunday morning the traffic was minimal. We stopped and had a burger, made an appearance at Petrie's and then home, just over 12 km.  Still taking it easy.

I joked that I finally saw someone else riding the lanes. I took the new Victoria Ave. lane and Walsh St. yesterday and the only guy I saw on a bike was on the sidewalk. A beautiful Saturday afternoon and nobody riding. Shame. With the new lanes you can actually get around the south end of town. I can't imagine why the city is painting lines in late August but if this continues the lanes may prove useful. We saw a couple ride by as we had lunch, the traffic doubled in an instant.

Farzam said Sal had to take care of Felix as the Cafe line is the toughest to buy. So she had him professionally cleaned and lubed when we got home. I wonder how she happened upon a bike cleaner right here in the wilds of Wiley St.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Where To First?

I just want to ride somewhere that is not work. Work as a destination I mean. A little work on the bike will be fine I just don't want the ride to end at FCD. It's a toss up between Mission Marsh and Westfort right now.

Our new beds arrived this morning, not just new but bigger. The bedroom needs some further arranging but the delivery guys took care of the tough part, negotiating the treacherous switchback staircase.
The chiropractor said I could start doing things again but to be careful of the Danger Zone, the place where you feel good and overdo it. He and Sal have both vowed to hurt me if I get out of line.

Surly announced some new products for 2012 on Friday. They must spend half their time on product names. The new big wheel snow bike is the Moonlander, the Trolls 29" brother is the Ogre, 3.5" tires are Big Fat Larry, wheels for the Moonlander are Clownshoes and my favourite Large Marge wheels for the Pugsley. I hope to visit their headquarters in Minneapolis in a few weeks if we get away as planned.

Friday, August 26, 2011

As If Cyclists Don't Have Enough To Deal With

Cars, drivers, rain, flats, thieves...the list goes on but what we don't need are cyclists begging to be the enemy of everyone behind the wheel. They give us the right to ride on the road, even paint some lines to mark our space. This raises the ire of many motorists. And to some that's just not enough.

I've watched guys ride up the wrong side of the road, the sidewalk and just about everywhere they don't belong. On Victoria Ave. this morning I watched as an adult rode illegally down the sidewalk which parallels the new bike lane. At 5 I was passed by the guy in full racing kit on a road bike. He comes to a stop sign, rides left across the front of the waiting cars in the crosswalk, another illegal move, then up the wrong side of the road until he goes across the road and continues along his merry way. He knows better. Anybody with as much invested as he did knows.

I expect those who ride by necessity rather than choice to break the rules. They ride the cheapest bikes and just don't care, they don't think of themselves as cyclists. But the guy who spends that much on his gear, clothing and extras who thinks of themselves as a cyclist has to think of what he is projecting to the man behind the wheel.

There are people in town who want to march to city hall with a petition asking council to force bikes off the street and back on the sidewalks 'where they belong'. It's not the councils call but it shows the chasm between the thoughts of those on 2 wheels and those on 4.

If you are a cyclist then remember how hard we fight for that 18 inches of the road. Obey the rules, use your head and keep it in a helmet. Maybe in time, maybe not in your lifetime, but in time the majority will accept the bicycle for what it is. A simple machine that could help save the planet.

It's Official, The Girls are Free!

I just left the chiropractor and have been officially un-grounded. It's a good thing too as I rode to my appointment. Details too follow.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


At this age it's just another day, or is it?

After riding Lisbeth to work yesterday I decided to take it easy and be driven to and from again. Honesty I didn't hurt anything with 5 easy km. but I just don't want to go backwards. I told the chiropractor and he said he would beat me severely if I started to push things too early, and I'm confident he would. I really appreciate the rides but miss the freedom of going where I want when I want.

I had absolutely no pain this afternoon, not from sciatica anyway. The pain in my butt came from another source I won't go into just yet.

The Android update I had been waiting months for showed up yesterday, one day after mom got her Xoom.  Today the Swype keyboard was upgrade and wow it is a great addition. They added a simple function for cutting and pasting. Makes typing so much easier.

As I left the chiropractor I discovered I was missing my wallet. I called Brian in case it was in the car and then found AJ and we headed to work to look. Fortunately it was right there where I left it. My lucky day I guess. Told you.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Saturday Morning Hope

6 am. I wake up and see my new longest night of sciatic sleep revealed by the clock of our cable box at the foot of the bed. There's something missing. I remove my apnea mask and wrist braces. I'm stiff from not moving in 7 hours. I decide to get up and slowly make my way to vertical. Something is still missing. I gingerly make the descent of the stairs. As I get into the shower it dawns on me, that didn't hurt.

I shower away the stiffness and the pain is still absent. I bend to pick up a towel and it's there but just a sip of what it has been for weeks. I make coffee and sit to check email, read news and write this. I get up after about 15 minutes and still only a trace.

Since asking the chiropractor about piriformis he has added several stretches for that muscle to our sessions. It is great when someone takes your concern and research efforts seriously. Brandyn sat in on yesterdays session and smiled through my ordeal.

Or maybe it was the secret ride around the block on Eyowen that I took after cutting the lawn last night. I had walked home from work, had supper and a short nap but forced myself to push the old human powered mower for half an hour. My leg felt good so I took Eyowen out and down the back lane and then round the block. Felt no worse but decided to stop and not risk it.

I truly hope this is real.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I slept until 5:35 this morning and once I was up I felt different. Much less pain but a little stiff. I walked home last night so maybe that helped. I really hate walking and being passed by people on bikes. I enjoy the walk but would much rather be pedaling, just jealous I guess.

Phone calls have started as the Key is out online. We only have 14 spots left so people had better get going. I wish I could record the answers to the questions I get over and over. I put the answers in the ad but it doesn't seem to matter as people don't read.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


I've done a lot of reading about what is causing the pain in my a** and leg but because I was concentrating on sciatica I may have missed the real cause. Piriformis syndrome is a tightening of the piriformis muscle which in turn puts pressure on the sciatic nerve. The piriformis gets tight from things such as rowing and you guessed it, cycling, without stretching properly. And you can guess the next part, I never stretch before hopping on a bike. I have tried a modified version of the stretching exercise that is supposed to loosen the muscle and can already feel something positive. That or I just want it to feel better and am convincing myself that it's working. I have another appointment at the chiropractor today so I'm going to talk it over with him. Keep you fingers crossed. It's a very rare form of sciatic problems but I'm anything but normal so just maybe that's it.
I talked with the chiropractor at todays session and he said he told me that was the area we were working on. I guys I missed it in all the latin he was throwing about.


After weed whacking the jungle at the back of Kresack manor I found myself in the basement standing between two orange beauties. Eyowen said, c'mon you worked hard, just around the block. Lisbeth asked, just take me out for some fresh air. I was tempted but decided to wait. It was tough. Everything felt great while I was hacking away buy something said hold on, give it some more time.

Friday, August 12, 2011

A Sad Little Boy

Made another trip to the chiropractor this morning. He was going through the preliminary back stuff and came across a knot in my shoulder. "What have we here" he asked. I swore his thumb was going to come out the other side, wow did that hurt. Right now it feels perfect. We're making progress as I have more flexibility and things are no where near as sore. Soon girls, soon.

Sal had Brandyn today and we went to Tim's for a quick lunch after my appointment and as we ate he asked if we had seen Lola. No not yet we said. Sal asked if he helped out with his new sister, he loves to help out with just about anything. He got a strange look on his face, eyebrows almost together, very concerned. No he said, they don't let him help. He hasn't fed or held or been a part of anything. Very sad. So concerned with the safety in one and so irresponsible with another. I won't go into detail but it's safe to say he'd be better off elsewhere.

Apparently the leagues of Lakehead minor are miffed because they gave the four directors a vote and things aren't going as they planned. We only got votes as part of the change to a recognized body. They were a necessary component. The members voted to give the vote but now don't like the fact that we can help forge policy that is good for hockey and answers to no agenda. All four of us have no kids, no grandkids or motives for putting in time there. They will be hard pressed to find four others with the years of experience and skills to manage the crazies that make up the hockey world. We're asking for a vote of confidence and then deciding on the future.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Polish Miles Davis

When an author in a novel mentions an album or song I often try to find any that I'm not familiar with just to check the intended mood. A detective in a recent read was listening to Tomas Stanko, the mood was supposed to be mellow. So I googled the name and found a trumpeter known as the Polish Miles Davis. Pretty good jazz. I'm listening to Dark Nights streaming over the net as I tap out this post.

I slept through til 4 am last night and am hoping for another good one soon. I see Dr. Trevisan, or Hawkman to you Northwoods hockey fans, again tomorrow. The half hour session is a bit painful but they seem to be working as both nights after have resulted in better sleep. I'm missing the bike in a big way and can't even walk to work as he wants me to go easy until things are better. Unlike my gp who said to keep doing what I was doing.

Work has been pretty steady lately as we have best last years June and July numbers and are heading to best August as well. Not that you'd know it from the lack of any response or way to gos that are passed around.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


I was all ready to get back to reality until last Saturday. Mike and I were going out to Lakeshore Drive on the bikes. I decided Jill needed a ride as she has only been out for one ride all year. I pumped the tires, moved the seat post over and took her outside. As I turned to come inside it came back. Sciatica grabbed my right leg from my hip to my knee and would not let go.
After standing through a family breakfast on Sunday I wrongly thought I could ride over and watch the boys play some tennis. I made it but couldn't even stand. I paddled and walked home. Jill was just not going to go for a ride.
Every night this week has been hell. Minimal sleep. Hot. Painful. Unlike the two months with sciatica that had all but ended, the pain was not controllable. Used to be if I stood for a few minutes it would subside. This week I've spent so much time standing that my feet are sore. Worst of all riding is painful. Sitting in the car is torture. I've been reduced to walking to work, I don't mind walking in the winter but not when it's 32.
I go for my first visit to a chiropractor tomorrow morning, I just hope relief is in sight. I was considering canceling the mri. Now I'll just do whatever I need to do to get back on track.
Mike just called as they pulled back into Calgary safely. It was great to see them. Wish I had been able to go for a few more rides with him, maybe next year. Sure is hard to think that we won't see them got that long again.