Sweet Nothingness (panino)

If you are needing motivation, you won't find it hear.  My car is full of wheels, tools, trash; race relics.  The kitchen counter, dirty dishes.  The bed is unmade.  I sit here typing in a damp kit, with a half drank bottle of coke and the foil that once wrapped a pepper and egg bread.

I've lost that blankness, the warm blanket that  just recently coddled my brain.    3.5 hrs of riding.  a gray day to ride.   A bit of drizzle, not enough to soak me, enough my body could warm and steam in a bit.  A chilly fall day.
The bike path is mindless, maybe a dozen times you have to look for cross traffic.  My legs just pedaled, cruise controlled right about 20.3  I tried to think, gave up on it, and felt lucky to be so brain activityless.
The most pressing thought came on the way back into town.  Of eating a pepper and egg bread, in the bakery.  Maybe sitting on some milk crates, floor dusted floor, heat from the ovens.  
I stopped, nice chat, Marchiano's is such a nice place, and pocketed the bread.  Rolled to main st. bagged a ciabatta and some crack rolls, and a coke.   Zipped it all up inside the rain cape that I had stuffed in a pocket. (shouldn't those pockets on out kits have a special european name).

  got home and just pealed it all off. chewed my bread, and came back from that; awful nice, sweet nothingness time.   Like a boxer answering to a 10 count. 

no music, I tried but nothing seem to play well with the theme.   ah life, the real world. I'm here, again. dlowe.


tv out the hotel room window

I'm having a private party here at the house.  Just me and the kitties.  It appears that the season, ah my love, cylcocross racing, the season is done.

and just a bit of dirty nasty noise to motivate the tipping back of the cold rye beer, good rye beer from Jeff  Appeltans.

        some   "Ass Worship"  from the outstanding Lullabye Arkestra.

It was a great racing day, not epic in anyway, but drooling hard and soul touching.   Just racing my friends, well the ones that made it.  We duked it out, a kick to the groin, slap to the back of the head.  Rolling on the ground tearing up your Sunday clothes day.

yep, that's me on the wee little box.   

Cheers,  what do I do now, just ride my bike for fun?   dlowe.


Ginger Snap!

I'm up, and the clock said "5:45" when I rolled outta bed.  By choice, I'm up.   I've long grown past the need for sleep, or a concern for when or how long to stay in bed.  A day like this, I'll get a nice early afternoon nap in.       Not working today.  Most peeps around are crisped, burnt toast, from racing and training.  Not I.
This week has been on the Mtbike, cross bike, and today another Ginger Snap ride; on the road bike.   To combat the fatigue I mix in the easy friends rides.   The snaps, a bag full in the jersey pocket, to share, along with the wonderful banter and coffee, the sit time after the pedaling.   

Yesterday George, Anthony and I awoke early.  They both pedaled up with a bit of crust, some attitude, bed headed attitude.  I had already had two cups of black Joe, so my mouth was off and running.   The bikes and cool air soon had them joining in.   Cross ride: Drop in at Belmont, trails, bridge over the river Schuylkill, the Jeff Appeltans trail, some photo opts. pathathlete/scowlly commuter trail, Ginger Snaps and Coffee!  

still, more friends to ride with, more trails, roads, doughnuts, coffee, snow, booze, nights, cold and rain ahead.    I look at my legs  "cheers legs".     There must be some velodrome inside my skull, with the bikes just going round and round, I am a bit batty about the bike.   Cheers Friends, eat up, please eat some more!  d.lowe


Honey Tone

groove could be a rut
nice niche

groove- "Brother John"  Clutchy Hopkins And Lord Kenjamin

I went to the shed, and proceeded to polish up the old Raleigh.   In my short riding life, their have only been a couple of bikes that I have fallen in love with.    The first, my Schwinn Homegrown, my first grown up real ride.   That had snap, crackle and sizzle.  I'll get one again. 

and this Raleigh.  Its cheap. Heavy.  Utilitarian.  Like a Danelector guitar and its lipstick pickup.
Its got some new bits hear and there, and wheels that don't really roll to round.
You can't find anything like her, her shape, simplicity.
I love my Raleigh.

I breezed about Belmont with my eyes half closed, following a memorized trail hidden in a thick yellow leaves.

I heard some rustling, and a bloke stood, in the distance.  We road for a bit.

Spinning home takes a bit more time.  and we, the Raleigh and I, stopped to take advantage of the angle of the fall suns rays.

Ljiljana and I went to Teresas' Cafe to Celebrate 24 years of marriage.   The cafe had a good beer list, but no soul.   no need to pay a return visit.

terra fume

cheers! d. lowe



the blokes.

I push that cart around, when its empty I go to the truck and get more.

Yesterday, Saturday, I was on set, not racing up in the "not Hamptons".
I drove up to "someplace" Long Island This morning.  The course was pretty nice.  Long drawn out, with just enough off camber, steps and sharp corners to make it raceable.
I started in the last row, by myself. 
I moved up some but fell back a bit.
I chased hard, really hard, trying to latch on to the last car on the last train leaving town.
I just ended up watching the train chug along with out me.
Marc V. waving from the caboose at me.

Some were not so lucky, some punched out spokes for one, and another, I think lost a tooth to the barriers.

I was tired today, I don't know if that's what made me feel a bit slow, or just being a bit slow, made me not as fast as the others.     the blokes, friends n'fodder of the pack, I'll take you on again next weekend

I will now lay myself out on the couch and try to raise my head a bit for a sip now and then and watch some football.   cheers, blokes! d.



I like M. Night.    judge him by his latest works?    Rubbish, yes, some, a lot.  He needs to move to Pulp, the dark soul of Philadelphia and take advantage of all the evil that lives so near to him.  The ugly beating human heart of Philadelphia.

my Video.  Lo-fi Media presents:

Fort Collins Cx usgp '10 from David Lowe on Vimeo.
"Night" mix. a homage to Shyamalan

the new Kieth Richard's book "Life" is sucking me in, its good, one where your mind is blanked and you just absorb the words.   I am into it a couple of chapters, its unexpected, the simple humanness, soul is full, frank.   a good stuck in an airplane seat read.  

National Champ?  a time trial qualifier?  what I feel is the real soul of cross is the unpredictable, instability of its nature.  The only fair way to have a Cross TT is to build an indoor track and let the old peeps go at it.  Otherwise, you've got a dull knife in your hand and you are cutting the heart out of what it means to be a racer.   Just do the rankings on points, earned during the season.  Simple, fair.  Cheers, dlowe.


petite coquette

 I flew over Philly last night.  In my return from Boulder.  The sun was just getting below the horizon, setting.
             the dots of lamps outlined the roads and houses, the red dots, lines of cars brake lights.

I recognized the dark sensual areas.
the trees.
thick and bunched in trimmed zones.

 I pulled my cross bike from the cardboard travel box.  Knocked off the last of the Boulder/Fort Collins dirt.

 This day, the land was full of color.  My trails, full of wild smells, slippery and very unpredictable.
 A long cross ride, alone. 
 I don't believe in God, or heaven, I don't want an after life.  If I try hard enough, its all here for me now.
a toast to my soul mates, to all... cheers. dlowe.


Two of the hardest racing days I've had.  Going from the warmth and easy times of the re-union of friendships to the cold fridged mud; unpredictably slippery, battling a demon that I could not create.

In my heart, I am a racer.

Day 2, USGP Fort Collins, CO.   Slotted into the grid as a somewhat relaxing number 23.  Close enough to the front to move up, but a bit away to keep me off the tip of the arrow head.    I've got my starting tact back, and when the whistle blew I moved up, dropped down two gears and on the brief macadam sat where I wanted to be on to the thin "good" narrow line when we hit the mud.  Some where just outside of the top dozen, 16th, or 15th.  The ground,  frozen, ruts, with a melting layer on top.  We sped on, a few shot across the lumps and tried to pass, risking early, and moving more backwards than the efforts were worth.   As we came into the longer corners I could count the men in front of me.  In the first climb, the ground was firm so I went over the red and just passed the few I could.  Leaving me just a bit out of the top ten.   I felt good.  I hit the berms, and jumped up to an outside line, just a hair short and the rear went 180, dropping my chain.   Hopping off, passed by the herd as I put the chain and back on. 

Cross is lonely for me.  I go from the starting grid to pulling off the soiled kit in a brief moment.   I was lucky to hear the blur of my name shouted at me, encouraging me.   I race hard, and not with anger.  Somehow I find time to be just a bit chatty.  A few brief words every so often to my fellow racers, "nice corner",  "Hard, stay on my wheel" closing a gap to the a rider in front of us.    

I've never regretted a race I've started, and I'm a field horse,workman like in my suffering.  I don't over think it, I go hard, maybe not fast, but hard.   I sprinted hard both days and picked up one place on the short bit of pavement to the line.  I suffered, bellowing in the thin air, black little dots dancing in my eyes.
                                         Photos: Chad Totaro

I've forgotten what its like to finish on the podium. 

but still that moment, it captures me.

alas all

in the end
ended up

to my own Philadelphia bedroom tonight, next to my wife.

last night in Boulder.

cheers, d.



I have so much to say.  I can't put it all into words.

A life to full

cheers, dlowe.

good bye Boulder.



Got a nice low number, number 9.   but that did not help me much.  I slipped back in the numbers, slipping around Fort Collins and with a firm Thud! ended up 26th.  I've got a small grin.  I had a good time, with my bad skills.  Tomorrow, we'll see.

and team mates from the past got to join  us for dinner
a real nice bonus.

                Al and Eric joined Anna, Chad, Kristine and I for a nice dinner, laughs and catching up.

Two nice critters joined me for a good night of sleep.
Off to bed.   I've got some racing frozen ruts covered with slippery mud ahead of me tomorrow morn.
after one more beer.
cheers! dlowe.



I search, listening to hundreds of songs.  It just takes a brief second, nay, onto the next one,... or the rare, cool, and move on to the acquire stage.   Then someone comes along.   Holding something in there hand you've never seen, but much the same as all the rest. It follows all the rules, but when you bite into it its bitter, short of a tad of common.  But you like it, why?   The Extra Lens-  "Ambivalent Landscape Z"  so many types of apples nowadays, you evil snaker.

and the skys shook a bit last night, just a light dust of snow was knocked loose.
The growler was empty.
bottles a many.
but clear heads prevailed.

so to the mountain
and a pre-race jaunt about on the trails.
the shadows held the unmelted snow.
and the sun just a touch of soft ground.

Its easy to say, this has been some of the best bike riding I've done.

eve of the AM
the bite of a burn of cold.
to Fort Collins
the scene?
you know.
Bike racing.

The next time I blink I'm in the Grid.
to the magic time, just after the words
"15 seconds"
has left the lips.
The eve.

cheers, dlowe.



Clouds mean different things, different shapes, puffy and full of cotton candy.
F'n snow and dampness, making the ground cold, white and slippery.
Clumpy mud.

I was up early today.
I saw the snow and jumped in the air and clicked my heels.
Me and the pup Logan took our wagging tails outside.
Frolicking, we had fun.
I made him a snow man.
He made cute.

Got an oil change,
some goat brie
and what could a boy of 48 would want, but a fun slippery mud snow ride.
Chad took the lead and I tried to stick to his wheel.
Jumped a small gully and some sharp metal.
1.8 hrs of ride.  I'm downloading the watts now.
pie graph.

ME, maybe a shower, a cat nap, and fresh brewed beer.
hmmmmm, dlowe.


Fresh meat

I don't like the airport, or the cattle on the planes.
I don't like the bartenders.
so I wondered around waiting for my flight.
Jessica Singerman posted some airport passing the time snaps up on facebook, and I thought that I'd give some clicking away as a way to pass the time too.

I started to feel not so un-noticed, and really wanted to board the plane, so I thought maybe wander around taking pictures was'nt the best thing to do.

 Landed to a light frosting of snow.   Gone but stilled chilled.  Chad took me out for a nice 2.5 hr ride of the dirt roads, and trails of Boulder.   Got to say hey to a lot of cows, saw some of them praire dogs, and now into the well stocked fridge of Chad and Anna's.  Just sipping some fat tire ale.   
                                                Thee Cyclocross Racer himself, me, Mr. ego!
                                                       Mr. d.lowe.



What sets the mood?  Fairhill Cx 10, a really nice mood, a good race changed/added to the MAC mix.    Moved from the traditional horse rink to a new plot of land.   The course was laid out nice, and took advantage of the personalities of the grounds, off cambers, table top, long slogging up hill grass, greasy corners.   For a first time running, who knows how something is really gonna flow till you've got the X-masses out racing, it showed a lot of positive flow/design.  Next year as it gets tweaked, I figure its only going to get better.  Negs?  no water.  We are lucky that there was no mud.  Mud+cross-means must wash.  So figure in the added cost of a water truck, wash station.  I know that it is expensive to put on a race, but its more costly to put on a poorly supported race.  

Fairhill Cx 10 from David Lowe on Vimeo.

I like the team tent idea, and $25 is reasonable price, and a good way to raise funds for the race.  Our team tent was full all day, of friends, team mates, competitors and dogs.  Warming up, tinkering on their bikes, drinking, eating, and just good spirits shared.

Whimsical,  I like a day where you battle with friends, you drink with your friends.   MAC cross, just must be in its blood,  seems so easy, to show up, race hard and have a good time.   Thanks and Cheers, dlowe.
I'm off to bike nerd HQ,  flying to CO to visit Chad and Anna, and get a bit of bike riding in and maybe some cold muddy cross racing at the USGP fort Collins. 


bad Brained

I'm drinking a beer that's so black when I hold it up to the light I can't see through it.   Its 5:33 and I feel a nice easy buzz.   Nice.

DarrlyJenifer.  Sir.
                       Bigger than life, some things feel more than this shell I reside in.

Saw the Bad Brains at the black cinder block box of City Gardens, in the audience I felt a bit intimidated.  and disConnected.  A white suburban Ohio kid.  I was amazed by the depth of power embedded in the music.  I still think "incredible" while I listen to them.  The power in the music moved me past thinking, I was in-vibe-ed.   I stood at the edge of a turmoiling boiling skanking pit, and stared wide eared.  I needed that music, to motivate me, a courage of not belonging. Now so many years later, nourished and enriched by my youth, I try to not deny my adolescence, but to rekindle it.  To now understand what that power was that I felt.    To use it in a purposefully way, not like a missonary, I've got no gospel to spread.
its For my Id.    that's it, ...enough of the bombastic seminar. 

a bit of early work today, a lot of coffee, a nice ride and a good beer.

cheers, dlowe.



                            WIRE- I am the Fly.

I found a newish to me trail at Belmont.
on my training ride.
a nice one.
all momentum.
all the obstacles hidden.
Popping out at you in the last second.
Nice surprises.
So I sit on my cusp of a season.
I think I'll try to find a cross coach next year.
I used a coach once.
It really helped.
and the coach was a bit more off his rocker than me.
We worked together just fine.

I have a coach in mind,
he's not a coach.
but I think If I'm smart and tactical,
I will get him to come around to my way of thinking.

I wish I had some power meter numbers.
cheers, d.



being naive, not knowing what you are doing, but you are into it, enthusiastically into it, a bit of a wild child, it gives you a strength.   Cause you don't play by the rules, in fact, you don't even know you don't know the rules,  but you are playing the game .
In wrestling, I was a donk.  I didn't know how to wrestle, spasmodically, I went at it whole heartedly.  When my opponent went for a single leg take down I'd inadvertently kneed him in the head.  I'd end up getting some kind of back points with some contorted grappling hold.  My coach had a knack, and just let me go at it, not trying to break me, I did a OK.

I like to look at riding the bike as riding a bike.  They are all about the same, two wheels, some pedaling, a comfortable position, and the ever important, overly unimportant equipment choices.  Road, club, town line, Wednesday workout, grass track, playing some chicken on single track, bumping down the mountain, ITS ALL GOOD.   I wish I could BMX, track, Ramm. or tour dirt tow paths, cherry pickin' goat paths.   I've got a long riding life ahead of me, I hope.  So If I'm a donk. A OK.   

Cheers friends, dlowe.

Beacon- The first lap I undercontrolled my bike, but I'd just let it go.  It took me a bit to stop two wheeling loose cornering it, with the tires, one pointed right and the other sliding left, waiting to grab.  It'd grab and I'd pedal as hard as I could.  It was nice and fast, I could of done a lot of things better.  My dismounts in the sand were sloppy, twice coming to a stall and having to climb off and get around the bike and get the run going.  Went good more.  Need more "good" speed.   

HPCX.   bout the same, that hill kills me, and I gapped the rights off infront of me, me not holding on tightly to the rope.  They slipped away from me and I ended up battling my mind to fight to keep my speed.  Assed my tire off the rim, stupidded it to the pit and chased like a blind snake, but came up short to the line, and just gasped instead of getting a bite.