I don't mind riding in the humid summer heat of Philadelphia.  I just try to measure my effort.  As if nursing my old AMC Gremlin along, windows down, hot air smashing in.  Watch the temperature gauge, and hoping and trying to keep it out of the red.  That once it is too hot, you'r done, for a long bit. Happy Birthday today to Marcel Duchamp, and to his ability to make me wonder.  I imagined he had a love of cycling, and knew a bit about suffering out on a ride in the sun.  The table on our porch, on it I have waiting, to greet my return, from my summer ride, a cooler of ice cold seltzer, a towel, and by it a chair.  Just to sit.  And let the cooking finish.
I've seen a couple of new riders out there, hammering along, I mean at a real good clip, 225+ watts, railing at maybe 23mph, for a long bit, 10+'s miles, and on flat pedals, an old bike.  I can't wait till the end of their effort, to almost give my applause, as I pull up along aside them, and they all seem to turn to me and have a smile, I say "man you were a crushing it!" and we both roll on.

I wish that this could be memographed, or piratedly xeroxed at kinkos, after hours, cut up and pasted in a zine, then probably it'd have some kind of creedence, and mean something more, and positive enough.

I wish that every person in Montgomery Co. went to a bike shop and bought a bike.  and That when I went to George's on Monday nights to drink beers with him, Anthony, Erin, and whatever other guest invited to the outdoor back porch.  That Anthony and George's eyeballs would be bugged out, and I'd see dirt so deep down in the skin of their hands it can't be washed off.  That the little common touch spots, the top of a pant pocket, or center of the t-shirt where they'd wipe the stress and sweat off, is black of old bike oil.  From selling and fixing bikes busy all day Monday at the bike shop.

Just a bit more.
There is something to falling asleep with a fan on high, and it's hot, that I like.

Cheers friend, enjoy the summer heat.


Philly is the Place

The cheap cologne, sweat tobacco and bad weed, made for a familiar philly aroma as I rode my bike through the East Park.

I remember early on when I moved to Philly from Ohio.  I went to see Sun Ra at the CEC center, a small spot in west philly.  Sun Ra was like a god from another planet rolling out to the piano.  It blew my mind.  That was philly for you.   This community center, a dopey white naive kid from ohio, seeing god.

That is how it is in philly.  It's a simple route, Belmont, The Boxer Trail, up on the road and around the ball fields, pass the box truck that'd haul the workout equipment that used to be parked on the corner weekends, before the virus.
The bench and iron plates laid out on the sidewalk.   There is no cheating a rep.
Dropping down to the Strawberry Mansion bridge I pass the Dell East, home of the Magnificent Funk Fest!  (worst hang over of my live acquired there).  West River Drive, Falls Bridge, the Wiss, and the tow path home.

now On a weekend Wiss is the spot, and 100's of pounds of food, grills, speakers, beers, families, and smiles make their way, down to the creek in the valley.  And as weird as it is, I find the weirdness of loud music rocking up out of the creek, and the parties, comforting.

I'm not every sure this time of year, out on the cross bike where I'll go.  I just want to ride, and I want the ride to make me fast, and I want to kick some ass when it comes to racing in the fall.

Ah, the Monday nights of Grass Track in August.   Taught me a lesson or two, and I change my cleats on my shoes about now, to avoid worn out unintended clip outs, and did so tonight. 

I'm not quite sure what I'm looking for out on these preseason rides, a special motivation, inspiration, strength, fortitude, a magic spell, maybe just a bit more compassion.  I'm glad I've made Philadelphia my home. 

I will be racing this fall, I might even get some recording breaking fast laps in at my local grass track.  I plan to  dig deeper and suffer more than I can imagine, out on the cyclocross course, even if it is just by myself. 

Cheers all!


In a Spot

I am a learner, that comes by knowledge usually picked up, by painting myself into a corner.
I brake bits, strip, dent, snap, drop and lose them, quite easily on my first attempt.

It was a good, the last three days of riding, the heat and humidity did compound itself, and by riding home, Sunday, I was a bit more loopy, than my normal self.

Friday I did some workouts on the bike. "Stay Fit!"  I say.
warm and a light rain, I'm a cap wearer.   and I watched the water drop form and rock on the brim.

Saturday it did not take long at all!  To realize that what I'd thought about getting a good bit, of hard, long, rugged, cx trail riding work in, turned into, a long,  hazy, humid, it just ended up being, surviving a long,  humid, hard, and rugged trail ride, to its end.

Today was better.

I had considerable less expectations of what I could do, it was a good cx long ride, but at a lower intensity level.
As I was just rolling out on the start of the ride, up the tow path, I saw a women in biking distress of some sorts.
I asked "are you fine, do you have what you need"  she answered, with a expression of "I don't"...

I stopped, it is a tough choice now a days, with so many out riding, who I help, and who is left to their own accord, to find a solution, and getting where they need to get, and their bike seems to have a problem.

Well she was, getting at the repair, on her way, to changing her tube, fixing a flat,  but I don't think she was far enough along to do it. 
I stepped in, and...
I did not booger anything up, I was a help.
and as I started to fix the flat,  she stopped me,
she asked "what is your name?"  I liked that.
It was better than a thank you, for sure.
and Quick I was, to fix that flat.
I helped her out and we were both on our way, snappy quick. 

Friday I was going hard, suffering, and my mind was to keep the body smooth, watch how far the drip rolled back and forth on the bill of my cap.
It was a light rain, and the drops came in a spread out steady pace.
and kept me good company.
Saturday, I just suffered,
Sunday....  a good long day of riding,  and with a nice memory!

Cheers, stay the course, keep training, stay fit!


Strange Magic

I'm a real simple person.  If I ever did something incredibly grand or important, the people of the town wouldn't make DLowe Avenue,  it'd be more like Simpleton Street.   I like that, being simple.
I'd hope the street named after me, not that I can every imagine doing something grand and important enough, came to and made an intersection with Common Sense Street.  And on Common Sense Street we could build a few very nice but modest houses, and we'd house our most modest intellectuals.  Maybe a couple of young hipsters.  The States Supreme court Justice could have a big place, with a nice jacuzzi.  I'd make sure my dream of the best pastry/coffee shop came true, and I'd have a house of every ethnicity, and they'd have a simple sit down place, where you tasted and ate things you could not pronounce, and flavors you never imagined.

Today I got out for a ride with Andrew.  Andrew is a top notch masters rider from NM.  I know Andrew from playing in a band.  He was a 17 year old kid, that became our drummer,  I was 27 at the time.  It was pretty simple decision, good kid, excellent drummer and he got the music and energy that we played.
The streets today were pretty empty, and I just did  a loop down West River Drive, around the Mann, back past my home, and down the Cynwyd trail to the Rocky Statue where we met up.

I can't think of a more productive training ride then today's.  We just rolled along and chatted it up the whole way.  Good Stuff.

Good training sessions to you my racer friends,  stay fit, keep fast, be simple!

Cheers, dlowe