May 31, 2009

Paris Bike Polo Video

BIKE POLO TOURNAMENT - CPCV09 from Androsky Knauer on Vimeo.

pretty good short video from the polo nutcases in paris.

enjoy.

then come out and play polo with us on wednesdays and thursdays.

May 30, 2009

Get some exercise and vent at Stride Gallery

...from here.

seems like a trip down to the stride gallery is in order this week.

i think it would be fun to ride around a (virtual) city and shoot at bush, cheney, rice and co.

might also feel therapeutic - especially for this closet politician hater.

May 28, 2009

CARS ARE LIKE CIGARETTES

click on the title to get to the article.

his arguement makes a lot of sense but also shows what we are up against if we want to reduce car usage by the masses. i dont think i can say anything extra to support his view - he seems to have covered most of the bases.

with the commuter challenge happening next week here in calgary, i thought it would be a good idea to reflect for a moment on this idea that we are addicted to cars and that that addiction is not unfamiliar.

May 25, 2009

Calgary Cyclist's Killer Faces Sentencing

all i want to say about this is get it over with, sentence this bastard, and put him away for life. Brian's family deserves to have their son back - thats not going to happen - however, getting this saga over and done with will allow everyone that was close to Brian to finally close this painful chapter and move on with their lives.

Links are here and here and here .

May 22, 2009

SMALLER WORLD?


my latest read...

here is an exerpt from the book -

Once the dust settles from the various crises rocking financial markets, we are looking at the same basic demand–supply imbalance that we were looking at before the recession began. That imbalance took us to nearly $150 per barrel before the recession set in. In the next cycle, the same imbalance will probably take us to $200 per barrel before another recession temporarily knocks back prices and demand.

pretty interesting read so far. i am not 100% sold on everything he is saying but do agree that we are going to see some big changes coming in the not-too-distant-future. arguments like this serve to support the idea that we need to change the way we have been living for the last 5 decades. the funny thing is that most people are just living for today, without any thought of tomorrow - and its those people who are going to be the ones who complain the loudest and have the hardest time adapting to the new reality that will be higher prices for EVERYTHING!

all you have to do is look at the price of gasoline right now. i was in canmore yesterday and gas was already at $0.98/L - and the summer "driving season" isnt every upon us yet and we are supposedly in the middle of "the great recession". whats gonna happen to those prices when the economy turns around and begins to take off again???

well i am am happy to predict away - and my prediction is that gas will be over a dollar within the next 2 months and by next summer we will again see prices close to $1.50/L. you watch.

once those gas prices get there - and higher - big ideas like Plan It, or small ideas like bike commuting will suddenly not be so revolutionary or radical. they will simply make sense.


ADVOCATE IT AND PLAN IT

the city of calgary is holding open forums on their proposed Plan It policy for the city. if you have been paying attention to the local news you will know that there is alot of resistance coming from the "free market" crowd - the same crowd that has given us sprawling suburbs and brutal commutes. if you are merely curious or a supporter of the concepts and direction of this plan, make an effort to go to one of the open houses in your area and dont be afraid to give the "planners" your thoughts. there have been some critisisms leveled at Plan It for not having any "teeth" to enforce the policies outlined - however - i think it is better to have this plan approved by City Council as is - over not at all. Maybe once it is passed the "teeth" can be added?

on a separate, but similar, note - City Council voted on the Memorial Drive Sunday Parkway closure a couple weeks ago and thankfully it passed - although not without some grandstanding from Ald. McIvor and his pals on council. if you are not familiar with this issue - check this out for an idea of what is inspiring this closure. What i dont understand i why the alderman that are opposing this concept are choosing to make such a big deal about yet another road closure. roads are closed all over this city - all the time. stampede. lilac fest. marda gras. the list is endless. the only thing that makes sense is that these alderman (mcivor, chabot, dcu mainly) must have a grudge against the "lefties" on council - that would explain alot.

regardless, if you are in favour of more livable streets, safer roads, street parties, and a calgary that puts people ahead of cars - you should plan to come down to memorial drive on august 16th to enjoy the summer and your fellow calgarians. if the closure is deemed successful, there will be a push to expand the closure's length and add more days of closures in the coming years. see you there?

finally, my time on the BoD of Bike Calgary has been truly inspiring and i have this feeling that cycling for transportation in this city is going to continue to grow. through bike calgary i have met some incredibly passionate people who are fully commited to getting transportation cycling on the agenda at city hall. we (the BoD) have begun to foster good working relationships with the "lefties" on city council and they are listening to our concerns and are beginning to advocate for them. these city councillors are very important to our cause, but they cannot do it alone. they need us - all of us - to support them too.

supporting these initiatives is easy. write a letter to your alderman in support of plan it and/or the memorial closure. if you read the herald online, dont be afraid to leave comments of support for alternative transportation issues. ride your bike to work when you can. ride to the grocery store once and a while. SPEAK UP! anything and everything helps.

May 19, 2009

TUESDAY NITE RACING IS ON!


calgary's summer criterium series kicked off tonite. this race series has been running pretty consistently since 2000 (although it was started many years before that) and offers road racing cyclists a chance to tune up their sprinting and cornering on a technical, 4-corner circuit.

the races are short, usually around 30 minutes and features a few different ability levels for "newbie" cyclists and experts alike.

if you are new to road racing, curious about road racing, want to work on your pack-riding skills, or improve your speed - these are worth checking out. the racing is usually great - egged on by the fast course and hairy corners.

people fall off sometimes. thats racing. as i say to my son, "if you ride bikes, you will fall off of bikes."

STREET SLAYER PICS
































last thursday, the right on track charity auction went down at the bamboo tiki room. it seemed to be very well attended and i think all the frames ended up being auctioned off to happy bidders - to the benefit of the charity right to play. i chatted with a couple of the organizers (tasha and michelle) and they are hoping to do the event again next year, maybe with bmx frames and cruiser bikes too!

great event, great cause, good times!

i won the auction on this devilish looking frameset and am looking forward to getting it assembled soon. look for a review as soon as its built.

May 18, 2009

FRONT YARD PROJECT - PHASE 1, EXTRACTION - COMPLETE

i have been wanting to remove my front lawn for many reasons, for many years. i have finally decided to pull the trigger this year and make it happen.

man-o, what a job!

i rented a sod cutter and it worked pretty well with multiple passes, however, what a workout! the tool weighed about 200lbs and was a brute to operate. i also rented a tiller to loosen the soil and that tool was also a brute to operate!

behold the destruction!

next up is to set the stone patio back in place (next to the deck) and then the transplanting/planting of the 30+ native shrubs, trees, and perrenials will begin.

after that we will install one fence panel on either side of the walkway to give us a little more privacy and wind protection and i guess it would be appropriate to hold a party for the official opening of club1410's new patio...stay tuned.

if you want an invite to the opening, leave a comment.

May 15, 2009

2 BOTTLES FOR THE LONG WEEKEND


yum. i cannot wait to dip into these two new bike wines this weekend.

the weather is suppose to be beautiful, and i'll be parched from digging up my lawn all weekend.

cono sur organic cabsav, 2008 and hill of content shiraz, 2005.

ok, so the hill of content shiraz 2005 was the first one we drank.

quickly. yum!

it was incredible smooth with very prominent fruity flavours and a medium tannin - super good. i would recommend it as a summer wine for sure. our bottle was a little chilled (15c) and it was nice like that. definitely recommended.

next up was the cono sur organic cabsav 2008.

i have enjoyed a few bottles of this fine example of chilean perfection before and this particular bottle did not disappoint. yummy yummy yummy - classic cabsav, no surprises, went perfectly with bbq'd burgers and grilled sweet potatoes. highly recommended.

May 14, 2009

PRODUCT REVIEW














product review might be the wrong language to use here - more like a "dont-buy-these-tires-cuz-they-are-shit" product review.

the photos were taken after 3 polo sessions totally about 8hrs of riding and show the smaller patches. there are bigger patches and - actually - chunks of tire are missing in other areas.

to be honest, if i was the person that designed and marketed these tires as suitable for "courier" use (that is the name of the tire), i would be embarrased at my own incompetence. these tires are shit, probably the shitty-est tire i have ever used. in fact, the tire gave up after polo yesterday forcing me to ride home on a flat tire.

my advice - to quote Flava-Flave from Public Enemy - "dont believe the hype!".

May 10, 2009

POLO IN THE 'PEG

many thanks to the 'peg polo people that came out tonite.

some good polo action was had fo' sho'!

May 9, 2009

THE TRIBE OF BIKE IS EVERYWHERE!

i ventured out last nite to find some live music here in "the 'Peg" - and - after an exhaustive search online for a suitable show, i settled on going to see somastate at "the zoo". as luck would have it, i pulled up out front where the bands were loading their gear in and, after locking my bike up, i rolled in through the band entrance and got in for free! nice!

once inside, i was bummed to find out that the band i was there to see wasnt in the lineup at all - wtf?

so, i stuck it out for a couple of the opening bands (barf! - lame!) and eventually bailed cuz the music was not doin it for me.

as i roll out the "front" door - which is in the back of the building (go figure), i notice a group of about 12 cyclists who are obviously riding together and are stopped at the beer store for supplies. i quickly unlocked my bike and asked if i could tag along with them on their ride. "no probs" they say.

turns out, the ride is organized by the bike dump - winnipeg's main community bike shop and after chatting with a few people i find out that one of the riders - glen - knows jarvis and justin through the messenger community.

small world.

it turns out that the ride was actually over and the last stop was at one of their friends houses, complete with a nice warm fire in the back and lots of friendly faces. it was super nice of them to let a stranger into their little party - and it was great chatting with jeff, greg, glen, sarah - a few others i cannot remember - about their community bike shop and all the things we as members of the bike tribe have in common.

thanks for the dose of winnipeg bike culture - many thanks!

May 8, 2009

INDIAN HEAD, SK

"a progressive little town on the prairies" - or so their sign said.

i find it very strange that i have not spotted a single "big thing" since crossing into manitoba.

i wonder why that is? are manitobans more modest than the rest of canada? they must have something they want to share with the rest of us?

i think this is going to require a little more investigation on the way back west next week.

i am 5 days into this mondo roadtrip and today felt the first "i-want-my-own-bed" pangs.

i'm such a homebody.

May 7, 2009

CRAIK, SK

buffalo hunter statue, on hwy#11 between saskatoon and regina.

ironman's got nothing on this fella!

May 6, 2009

DAVIDSON, SK

hows do you like your coffee?

a little dash of creepy grandpa, maybe with a couple lumps of goose shit, with a side of trucker butt?

you want butter or marmalade on that trucker butt?
ROSTHERN, SK

does big wheat make big pasta and bread?

what about big, iron wheat?

is it better for you?

hard to eat?

May 5, 2009

PRAIRIE ROADTRIP

people in canada - and the prairie provinces in particular - love "big stuff".

if you have spent anytime on a roadtrip in canada, you have definitely spotted some kind of oversized thingy near the hiway. one of the things i like about these installations is how totally random they are. one town will have a giant moose, another a giant axe, another a giant spaceship. there is always a story behind this "big stuff" and a little bit of local history.

can-con at its finest.

on a side note, i spotted my first cycle tourist on the transcanada today near lloydminster - it must be may, the start of the cross-canada-cycling season.

May 3, 2009

POLO ACTION!

some great polo was played today, in glorious sunshine, on the new court.

ramsay bowl II will be held here this year.

May 2, 2009

club1410 OPENED TODAY

May 1, 2009

CALGARY IS AWESOME

...from their website - "Calgary Is Awesome, and we are dedicated to everything that makes it that way. If you want to read ugly, bad news about this beautiful city of ours, you’re going to have to look to traditional media and other blogs; C.I.A. promotes everything that makes our city awesome, from old to new and everything in between. We’re like the human interest piece on the news… only different.

critninja likes.
CONO SUR PINOT NOIR

my sugarpie brought this one over the other day to review.

my advice - avoid it.

it tasted like shit.

dont confuse this with the organic, cabsav available. that wine is real good and i will post a review as soon as i find a bottle (or 2).