Thursday, October 30, 2008


You know what sucks more than getting sick? Getting sick right before the Boulder Handmade Bike Show Halloween Zombiefest Road Trip. Suckfest.
I may be under, but the bike show looks to be pretty kickass. Perfect weather (mid 70s and sunny, as usual), tons of great builders (Courage, Nobilette, Tiemeyer, GROUNDUP!) and some Halloween polyfreakery. There's even a USGP cross race right after the show. Should be fun if I can quit coughing, and it'll make me feel better for missing the Astoria Hecklefest this year.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

only good things

Most anniversaries are pretty much no-brainers. Everyone knows what to do on the annual markers of weddings, or national independence, or births. The question is, what do you do on the anniversary of your friend's death?

We lost Brett Jarolimek a year ago yesterday to a bicycle vs. garbage truck collision that the police essentially called "bad luck." All things considered, the situation surrounding the accident was absurdly frustrating. The way I see it, Brett was an uncompromisingly good person who deserved nothing but happiness and the best things in life. So if a person like Brett could be taken away by "bad luck," then all bets are off. This is not to say that the future is pointless, but the present is far more important. If it could happen to him, it could happen to any of us, which only strengthens the idea that we should make every day worth it. This ultimately made it easier for me to let the little things slide, see the bigger picture, enjoy my days a little more. So that said, I didn't want to spend the entire day analyzing the experience and what it meant to me. I know what it means. I know what I'm doing about it.

So Jenny and I came to the conclusion that the best way to remember the event and celebrate Brett's life would be to spend the day living our interpretation of what he meant to us. In short, doing only the good things in life. Making people happy. So we took the day off. We woke up late and wandered to our favorite cafe for breakfast and coffee. I did a short workout while Jenny watched her favorite show. We made a great dinner and drank wine until late and enjoyed the cold mountain air. We lived outside of stress and obligations for a day and enjoyed ourselves and each other's company. It was Jarolimous.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

bcn pic

On the podium with Blatch and Jergen

Pete. English National Team coach. With a friend.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

tige's special request hour

A few from LA. Still haven't managed to bring in the Barcelonan pics yet.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

187 from 719. 25 it.

El Velodrom' D'Horta. Barcelona, Spain.

jerseys are cool

bikes are cool

El Beacho De Barcelona. Giant golden fish in the background. Frank Gehry is almost as weird as Gaudi. They're both from another planet.

Friday, October 10, 2008

win or don't bother coming back

So I'm sitting in the pits. Slumping, actually. Tired, wrecked, overall exhausted from 2 weeks of hard racing and endless travel. It's round 2 of the kierin. By this point I've had a dissapointing Nationals. My legs feel like they've quit, like they're already back in Colorado on my couch, leaving me a stressed out legless torso with a lot left to prove. When the first round rolled around, I reverted back to my brain and elbows. The safest way to make a dangerous living? Maybe. Not sure what really happened in the first round aside from a great fight with a young Rock & Republic rider. The moral of that story was toestraps are good and don't ride a 2000 dollar front wheel in a kierin with a frustrated sprinter who can see you coming. Anyway. So it's about 45 seconds before round 2 and I get a text message from Kacala that says "Kay says either you win something or don't bother coming back." Kay is the owner of the bike shop I work at back in Colorado. Awesome.

By the time the kierin wraps up, I'm not in the place I want to be, but there's not much else I could've done. Tuckerman would've been proud. There was chaos, there was violence. Not quite the "hosing all the blood off the track" scenario that he wanted, but I couldn't get kicked out before the team sprint...

Which went as well as it could've. Teamed up with Kelyn Akuna and the freight-train Jimmy Watkins. I rode first, got caught in the gate (of course), had an average first half and the best first lap of the day by a half second. We end up winning by over a second over the second place team. Finally! After about a billion 4th and 5th place finishes at Nationals, I got to stand up on the top step, get a sweet jersey and a chunk of (fake) gold. Brian hugged me so hard he almost crushed my larynx. It was brutal.

As for what this says about my future, it's uncertain. at a low 47 seconds we didn't do a world-class time, and missed the qualification time for a world cup by a half second. We could probably still make "coaches' selection" since we were the winning team, but the problem there is funding. Namely, we'd be on our own. We'll see what happens. Most likely scenario is that the Training Center starts picking up my food bills and I concentrate on the Christmas Carnivals in Tazzy. Anything after that? Well. It's all in the air. The coaches are either scattered across the country or in cardiac surgery as we speak (good luck Des!). After everyones out of the hospital and back in the springs we're having a meeting, but until then I'll assume that Tazzy is the end of the season and cross my fingers.

Spanish Kierin round 2. Prepared to stomp.

Friday, October 03, 2008

the best of times, the worst of times

I hate Los Angeles. This place is a wasteland. Brown skies, endless choked roads and angry people as far as the eye can see. What a monumental bummer to come from Barcelona to this.
Nationals is not going as well as I hoped. By the time l adjusted in Barcelona I was feeling lethal, here I can't seem to get my head out of the sand. My standing lap on the first day was an improvement over last year, but not nearly the time I feel capable of. Sprints were downright embarrassing. Bad 200 followed by an even worse first round put me in the stands for the next round. Kierin and a chance for good times and redemption tommorow. Going to throw on a big gear and ignore some rules, see who's watching. Maybe headbutt a watercooler and drag a junior by his hair through the pits screaming bloody murder just to set the tone before racing begins.

At least I'm not on the fast track to a cold doctors table. Des felt some odd chest pain and a tingle in his pacemaker his morning, so he's on the first flight back to CO to see his cardiologist. Not to be outdone, Blatchford has added "mystery back pain" to his trans-Atlantic post grand-prix fatigue, and has promptly pulled out of competition and into the doc's office. Guess that means I'm starting the team sprint on Sunday. Funny how quickly things turn around sometimes.