if you don't  or haven't raced cross, stop.   this is not for you.

this, this is for my brothers and sister that race cross,

Today I was called up into the grid #29, I finished #32.   in general going backwards, not good.   but the way I'm looking at it,  this year it goes down that I'm the 32nd fastest Male 50-54 Cyclocross Racer in the World.   Yep that's true.

its was dark when I got to the course.  I could not sleep last night, so keyed up, in a positive way.
I left to early, and was one of the first cars parked.  In the dark.
the ground was wet, and the temp it hovered around the freezing point.   so not only did my bike get covered with mud, but it froze to the bike.  makin a nice fudgecycle.

there are points in the races, where you are trying to dig down, that I wanna go faster, to will myself faster, and I see and hear the race way up the course in front of me.   and the body/mind it doesn't have it.   

 and things are still a bit blurred from that effort.   I still got a bit of post race brain gibberish.   but this year, really has been a great year of racing the cross bikes.  Not my fastest.  
Nope.   but I'm pushing myself back from the family dinner table, overstuffed, full of it.  

a nap, put stuff back in the bag, and I hope my minds and legs take me to race some SScx tonight.

Thanks for the looking me in the eye today,  thanks for telling me to go harder, to will me on, thanks my brothers and sisters. My Special family.  Sincerely, d.lowe.



the first thing I did was check in, then a bit of bike riding. checking out the course.  Then a stop at the sunoco for a 4 pack of the BBC Bourbon Stout.  

I thought I'd be taking a lot of pictures, and doing a whole lot of writing words, down on paper.
My gps won't work right, and things are strange.  I just keep listening to Bob Dylan. and I guess living just got in the way.

Louisville, I figure is what you get if you put David Lynch, Portlandia, and the Cohen bros. on the job.  Its that type of show.


the window is open. and the blinds are being blown about by a wind.  its warm for January.
and its gonna be cold, 25 when I race thursday.  with a heavy rain tomorrow,... I'll be good. 

I left flowers for my wife.

and I could shoot zillions upon zillions with a digital camera here, maybe I need an instamatic to capture the scene. 



road fresh

Mr. Otis Taylor - Banjo Boogie Blues

I am just an average 50 year old white man.  I live in Phila.  I race cross.  I can't sleep.   I'm ready for Louisville, I think.   Racing for a World championship.
I'm getting my music ready for the drive, my mix. 
I got a few 12 packs of retro cans of Tecate for the trip.
a flask, good coffee, 3 pairs of jeans, 3 t-shirts, 3-button shirts.  9 days away from home.
a shit load of all I got bike clothes.
A stop in Pittsburgh Saturday night,  a bit of a turn, but on my way, gotta see my Mom, stepDad Michael.   a bit of love and hugs and on the road.   I'm thinking Sunday Night at Freddies Bar
Louisville, just a couple of beers, a shot,  and to bed.

          my can't sleep started a few days ago.
the 1st night,  I got off the couch, and saw Mr. Lee Fields, a quick drive to the city, standing up by the stage,   the floor filled up, he worked, good old sounding soul to me, I got home and then dozed pretty good.
tonight, I rolled under the covers, shiver my self about, into place next to my lady.
My heart beat harder.
My eye lids stayed open.
My mind, I just thought thoughts of Louisville.
so I put my feet back on the floor,
sat back down with a beer,
I tried to write it off
my can't sleep.

Lee Fields - Honey Dove
to bed. d.  


Masthead, baby

ah the maiden voyage, on a new bike, its one of the best rides, ...the feelings of pedaling a new stead, good, disapointment, proudness, ... this one, she's nice, real nice.

mr. r. l. Burnside - "poor boy"

the trip to west philly, to Firehouse bikes, the stop signs, the stop lights, I just wanted to blow 'em and be there.  I like shit more than the shine-ola, I work hard, I do buy nice shit, light, fast, strong.  The things, bikes that make me most excited, are the dopey ones, I don't know why I like looking through the beaters, has beens, still got life, tanks, quirky, I liked the showroom floor of Firehouse Bike better than anyother bike shop I've been in.  That's where I went to get the Free Spirit made to SScx.  They did it cheap and nice, mixing old bits, my used bits,  as much as possible with the new, ... cables, brake pads, bar tape, chain, seat post, and cog. 

Anyone with a big wad can sit upon somepen really nice.  but style, glint, blunt...
that ain't easy.  and this bike, I know its not tough,  or fast,   she has limits, risks, but this is my Single Speed Stead for Thursday night in L'ville, the kick off to my off and end of my season, my ass pocket of whiskey.   and my off season, the 10 days I won't train, I will be pedaling to places in Phila.on her, that I've wanted to visit, to photograph, to sit at.  1st stop Coletrane's place, maybe then the bar where the Black Panther Bobby Seale's sold BBQ up on Chelton Ave.

yo, tippin' it back, dlowe. 



I sat in a tub of blue tinted water.  Fragrant, eucalyptus.  and read a bit, flip pages, sweat.  

Patrick our cat is doing well, quite a few trips to the Vet., and its all going as best it can.  We hope that a few more treatments and that our friend Patrick will be around for a while.

I came across some books, from 7 years ago or so, while moving stuff about.   I flipped the pages, while soaking, and looked at the art of Bill Callahan.  I've listened to his band Smog for a long time now.  After I noticed that he did the album art, he was pretty small time back then, I contacted the label and tried to buy some.  Looked like it was going to happen, but did not.   Then I saw some of his art published comic book style, nice flat paper pages and a glossy cover build.  Found on the labels website.  I ordered, and every so often, like now, I flip the pages.
winter time, sitting in a tub of blue water, drinking a beer, reading art comics.  cheers, dlowe.




I'm not born in Phildelphia, I'm born from Philadelphia.
Its my home.
Its the one place that I've lived in the longest now.
since my first visit, its in my blood.
Cold Speck - Old Stepstone
I can across this photographer, from, born in philadelphia area, Bucks Co.
John Frank Keith.
all I know about him is the info about him from Library Company of Philadelphia.
Its where I've pulled these,  some of my favorite photos of his, from.

 I study the faces, and the style.  Longer exposures, a bit of blur, maybe 1/5 of a seconds.  These were held, that the subjects listened, held their position, the photo was taken.  not snapshots. 

somewhere out of the blue Simon Firth, said, "Keep Philadelphia Normal!"   I don't think us who are from Philadelphia can help it.   I encourage every soul that sleeps in this city to do the same.  That our flaws, beauty, zest, thats us.  We are.

There is so much here, too much for a life time.
and I'm warming up for Louisville, I bought some Bourbon beers, and they are sitting on the desk,
and I'm drinking.

 ...John Frank Keith died on December 28, 1947, apparently of pneumonia after being in the hospital for over a week. He was a heavy set man, and his niece did not think he was well "from the beginning." He contracted meningitis as a teenager and as an adult "moved slowly, almost with a seaman's gait rocking from side to facilitate forward movement." A weary-looking Keith was captured around 1940 sitting on the front steps leading to a porch. In a pose similar to ones his subjects held countless times, he has taken off his hat, rolled up his sleeves, and pushed his hair to the side. He looks directly at the camera, with a slightly uncomfortable gaze. His niece said "he did not take many pictures of himself,"...
from the Library Co.
another place to visit, that Library Co.
To Frank (john)!



I was not able to make the LWC Crazy Train ride today.  I've been following the ride on facebook, the photos and post as they go up.  sounded real good, Nice.

So most of the last couple of days I've been home watching and taking care of Patrick.
One of our cats.   Patrick,  is pretty sick.   He has cancer, a large tumor on the leg was removed a couple of days ago.  We are trying to make him healthy, and give him a good quality life too.   The removing of the tumor gives him about a 50/50 chance of getting rid of the cancer.   If that does not work, ...he might have to lose a leg.  

His a bit feral, wild.  Its amazing how strong, how much pain he can endure, full of fight.  So he's locked in an room upstairs and my wife and I are doing the best we can to take the best care of him that we can.

I hope to maybe,  see if I can get out with the Lone Wolves sometime in the spring,  I'd love to get the loop in.  Nothing I would enjoy more than some urban miles on my cross bike.

I did get out for a short ride today, created a fun strava segment, a lap around Concourse lake.  Its cool, a couple of quick tight turns, and a few of 'em, if you miss 'em, you go into the lake.  Then,  I mostly lollygagged, enjoyed the weather, the park.