Monday, November 19, 2012

Part 2 of the bike racing post just without the bike racing

All this bike racing has really been getting in the way of life. I have been spending a very limited time in the woods. That is not only bad for the psyche, but didnt help my pursuit of the white tail during bow hunting season. This summer I acheived a goal of producing a bow from the landscape, but I just didnt have the time to practice enough to reliably make the clean shot. Actually making a shot on target is rare. So I stuck with my hand me down compound bow with sights. Not the end of the world. But lacking time in the woods, that was limited in productivity as well. Which is OK. Sitting in the woods is nice. It's not all about bringing home a deer. It's about connections to the real (natural) world. A connection to an activity that is fundamental to being human. Also eating good food and filling a predator void created by our imbalances. The unfortunate thing is I failed because I am lacking the connection to the real world and I miss out on the other three things because of it.

Yesterday I was surprised to hear a little bit on de-evolution in somewhat mainstream media. Well, on Wait wait don't tell me, which pulls it's humor from the media. They even used the term, which I don't totally embrace, but the theory was there. It's not surprising to me that it is so rare to hear it even mentioned. It has no easy solution. It might not even have a difficult one. Climate change? Cake. Stop burning fossil fuels, which are unnecessary for human life. Easy. So called de-evolution deals with a fundamental human trait. Our nasty little habit of controlling everything in our environment. What we control we remove from the great balance. What is removed is, well, off balance. The point of the skit on the radio was that human are getting dumber. That's a pretty broad generalization, but the point is without natural selection, there is no reason a smart person would be more successful at breeding than a dumb person. Just like a person predisposed for cancer, heart disease, poor eyesight, etc has no problem passing those genetics on to the next generation.

Now to tie these two topics together I'll talk about a recent event in the woods around my home. Opening day of gun season for white tail deer. De-evolution at work. These are not wise and capable hunters. Seriously, "hunting" with a gun is about as hard as going to the grocery store. It takes about the same effort and that is evident by the sight of some of these characters out there. It also takes about as much wisdom. The gun does all the work. Deer didn't evolve to avoid bullets sailing from a hundred yards away. All you do is sit and line up the sights. You dont even have to sit in the right spot really. Just a general vicinity, which is almost hard not to be if you are in the woods or field. They don't really need to aim that well either. Again general vicinity is good enough. Bullet goes through bone. With bow hunting at least you have to be sitting within like 20 yards of an unsuspecting deer that has to be facing a certain direction. Today this is considered "really hard". While yeah, I am unsuccessful so far, it really isn't so hard in the big picture. It's only hard because we are so far removed. Modern bows are really just quiet, short range guns. All the bells and whistles. If we think about how much time and experience we have with something like driving, and imagine if we spent that time learning to hunt from childhood......yeah, modern bow hunting is anything but difficult. All this being said, I guess I dont have any problem with gun hunting, other than the noise and the obnoxious people. If it's like going to the grocery store, well, at least it's fulfilling those two things mentioned above. They are eating good meat and filling that predator void. Now trophy hunting? No excuses. Trophy hunters are unskilled, misguided, meat heads. Humans used to be a component in natural selection. We culled the weak from the gene pool of our prey. Now these idiots go out and shoot the biggest and strongest with a rifle from a quarter mile away. I wonder what that's doing for the genetics of our prey?

Sunday, November 18, 2012

where have I been?

been a lot of places. It's been long enough that I think I'll skim through the results and then summarize the big picture so far....and then get on with subjects of more substance.

I pulled off a 2nd place in Maine for the downeast UCI weekend. Felt OK, not super, but led alot of the race till Lindine caught me and I started to have lower back issues. Day two I flew through the air onto my face hard enough that I was a little dazed. Called it a day.

 I braved the coming of superstorm sandy and the prospect of being in New Jersey regardless of weather to race one day of HPCX. This was the first weekend that my current UCI points became effective. Front row! I was able to start with the front and let the race develope without going ballistic. Of course, presicely when the front was starting to throw a few punches a mechanical sent me right to the back again. Ahh, this again. I salvaged a 5th.

Alright the season starts. Front row again @ Cyclesmart Inernational. Lead got established and I was there.....barely.  So there was my answer to wear I would be if the bad start position was taken out of the equation. I was there, but I didnt have much to contribute to the racing at the front. Check this out. On day 2 I decided to test the bad start theory again by missing my call up to the front row and hanging back in the third row. I fought tooth and nail to that front group again but again I was just there, ready to be on the back at the finish line. Day one I was able to get in for 5th due to a bunch of crashing. Although its not really a gimme. I stayed upright and hence rolled in for 5th. Day 2 all those guys stayed upright, relegating me to 7th..

After a last minute decision Dan and I met up with the Jam fund van to get to the Louisville USGP. I soon remembered why I quit road racing. Well, one of the reasons. The team van. probably my least desirable method of doing something I dont desire. No offense to the Jam team cause it also was one of the most hilarious van rides I've been on. That is saying a lot. Anyway, my current UCI points were only good for 3rd row in this field. I killled the start on Saturday and snuck in the lead group. This course had some world class sand though and I guess I have some work in that department. I was flying right through in warm up, but in the race I was all off. That surprised me because skill is usually my fallback when fitness is lacking. Anyway that shot my right out of the lead group and left me fighting for 14th in the C1 event. Not bad. Not great. Story of my season. Day two I had a bad start and never got to the front. I finished 19th, but I crossed the line with a rubber chicken that I grabbed by the barriers from frame builder Don Walker who was screaming $20 to finish with the chicken. It had a dollar in its mouth and I had grabbed one earlier in the day too. So I was up to $22 dollars combined with my $28 prize for 19th and its still a crappy payday.

That was alot of words on bike racing. I'm just going to do another post on important stuff.