spring

Spring is here on the North Coast and you know what that means!
It means ..stuff.. and things, flower bloomin, animals bangin, Captain George commenses his annual spring cleanin (NSFW), and new kits orderin (one can dream).

After a long winter of cross country skiing, slush city cyclings and binge drinking the brave dudes and dudettes of Scum city have emerged out of shape and slightly hungover to throw their cycling caps into the ring of local training races. Look for at least a couple of us tail gunning the lowest CATs of the RATLs, Covered Bridge Series, and most definitely the Chippewa Road Race..

The good Dr. J Scott has already put in two strong efforts at the RATL series and looks forward to contiuned success of not finishing last.

Hrm. Polar Vortex

Sounds like a terrible purple vodka drink which costs 18 dollars and that blind date your co-worker set you up on is gonna have 5 of them. Needless to say we’re working on a recipe in the Scum City Lab. I’ll post it sometime before the end of January for sure. The team by far and wide survived the cold snap except Wiley Vet Jay, who in a moment of Fatbike envy threw all his Rapha into the street and hasn’t been seen since. Much like a cat Captain George refills his water every day so we think he’s gonna be OK.

Vegan Steve and his Wife Amy had a baby. Congrats you two!

Outside of that, standard offseason stuff, lots of winter biking, some trainer riding and lots of soup on instagram. Hoping everyone had a good holiday, I mean this blog is still getting mad trafffic, mostly from spammers. BTW did you know you could get Cialis online? News to me.

Oh also, we are looking for a few Good people, if you’re looking for a team drop one of us a line. We’ll put you on the really long waiting list of people. Its 400 people long currently. Apparently some guy named Armstrong is number 320. Phil Armstrong? I dunno I can’t possibly keep up with the people who want to ride for us. I need one of those deli counter ticket machines.

Wait, that could end poorly. We don’t let George have sharp things.

 

Keep warm

dave

Symptoms include…

I’m here to address a very serious sickness going around. And that my friends is Bike racer disease. It’s an affliction of the mind akin to disliking onions. Symptoms include

Buying non functional components to save weight.

Carbon Forks on Fatbikes

Thinking the skewers on your wheels are “not good enough”

actually discussing tire weight on mountain bikes

“upgrading” to carbon only to sell it in a few years for artisinal steel.

only knowing people “on the bike”

If you or any person you know is exhibiting these symptoms you should have them seek help immediately. These are just the early onset. It only gets worse from there. Eventually you’ll be up all night trying to figure out which carbon seatpost defines you as a person.

There is a cure It’s painful, and there are side effects but I’ll write out the solution.

Step 1. Put down the internet. Log out of twitter, stop reading strava.

Step 2. PUT DOWN THAT FUCKING CARBON SEATPOST I CAN SEE YOU FROM HERE

Step 3. Get your hands on a sensibly built bike. Yes, it’s heavy, yes it’s probably not aero. If you don’t have one, borrow one.

Step 4. Ride to a bar/cafe/coffee shop. Whatever you’re into and it’s not allowed to be the one your group ride ends up at.

Step 5. Order a something

Step 6. PUT DOWN THE FUCKING PHONE, DID YOU FUCKING STRAVA THIS

Step 7. Relax read the paper. Watch a game. Talk to that attractive person of whatever variety you’re into reading the paper next to you. Do not discuss bikes. Not once.

Step 8. Smile. Relax Breathe.

Step 9. Repeat all steps until you no longer have any symptoms of the disease. Feel free to add some of you’re own. Like art? go to a gallery. Like coffee? tour a roaster they’d probably be stoked to have the visitor. Go see a movie, walk around the mall. Watch a marathon of something on Netflix while NOT on the trainer. Learn to cook something you’ve never made. I suggest pastry because it’s delicious.

I hope I’ve been of some assistance here, this pandemic is sweeping the nation and I’m willing to help.

 

Mahallo

Dave

 

It’s like summer camp ended. But sadly I didn’t get to have my “special moment” with the older camp counselor.

Another CX season in the books, the awards ceremony was tonight and it was a ton of fun. Nikki took second overall in her category if only by I believe the margin was in fact a sliver of ice. Next year is your year, keep it up.

It was nice to see the team not at a race, and share a meal. I know we actually do this reasonably often but it doesn’t mean I don’t look forward to/cherish the time when we get it. More so me personally, and I know that’s terribly grammar. Hell it’s possibly not english but I’m running with it. See tonight’s banquet was a “pot luck” so I brought a bottle of whiskey as food.

Stupid? Absolutely.

Was it food? IMHO yes.

I love you NEOCX, I’m sorry you had to put up with me for another year. My team is progressing, getting faster and altogether getting awesome. I on the other hand am regressing by the second.

To my team(who doesnt read this) because I have one reader. I love you all, let’s keep this insane ship going.

To everyone else: I will drag northeastern ohio into watching CX. No matter what it takes. This sport has my heart and I will see it flourish.

also, a bit of a race report(nobody submits them so I’ll just put my own in) today was Urban CX at the velodrome. It was basically the Indy 500 of races. I think I did eleventy billion laps.

Until I realized I didn’t take off my chrome pants, and still had my cell phone. Then I came off the hilly section, and pulled up my phone and called up spotify and played.

“Call me Maybe”

And pulled over into heckle corner and had a dance party. Because fuck you if you don’t think dance parties are important. Shit I got down.

I will miss you CX. I’ll miss the people, I’ll miss my team.

Rudy and Julie, seriously I’ll make you brunch sometime. Thank you for enduring my stupidity.

Marshal, I got you, now lets make cx great. On both our terms.

Carrol at regsitration.

You get all the hugs. all the handups, and all the love. I’m a handfull and I know that, and you’re a saint. I think next year all the teams should have to present you with a something every week, an anything really.

I’m gonna miss my cx family. More then any of you know, thank you NEOCX for being there when I needed you the most.

I got nothing but warm and fuzzies

mahallo

dave

 

 

It’s all fun and games until we’re out of punch. Then it’s just depressing.

Well I know I kept my one reader positively riveted yesterday so I’ll do my best to drive them away today. I left you all Saturday night with me sleeping on host steves couch in flannel Pajama Pants. Oh you didn’t need to know that? well frankly I don’t care. It’s my party I’ll blog what I want to. We roll out Sunday and head to SSCXWC armed with a keg and no idea whats going on. The former is rare for me, the latter is every day if you know me.

All the guys qualified for the “everybody wins” race so we lined up for a “braveheart” style start which means race down a hill then eventually get onto the course.

Promoters write that down, because it rules.

The course itself was great even without the side shennanigans. Complete with a “choose your own adventure” section of single track or a CX circle of doom. I did both, and they were both awesome. The course was complete with barriers, a chute of liberty bells(them shits were metal for the record) and an uphill I’m gonna talk about like that time my band opened for Nirvana(shameless movie quote). Or like fighting the Hulk, the more you threw at it the angrier it got, and the angrier it got the softer the ground and longer the grass got. Everyone on the sidelines ruled, getting yoga balls kicked at you on parachute hill. Or as I like to call it “the nearly vertical wall of shame and beer” Thankfully there was beer and that of course lightened the shame load slightly. During my race the weather was clear and cold but frankly that wasn’t gonna last.because the snow started falling during the mens race. Oh you want an actual race report?

You folks must be new around here, I barely paid attention. How can one cover a race where there’s free beer everywhere?

Adam Craig won, but frankly I couldn’t tell because it  had really started to snow by this point.

Now the ladies turn. All the ladies in the club put your drinks up! Holy shit these were possibly the worst conditions I’ve ever encountered at a race. It snowed 2 inches from the start of the mens to the end of the ladies race. This once again proving my theory lady racers are tougher then coffin nails(much tougher then me in fact). These ladies killed it, and for that my hat goes off to you. Who won? Again, if you’re looking for “facts” bubba you’re in the wrong place. Coming to me for facts is like trying to learn on Twitter. Let’s just say it never ends well.

But back to my pseudo narrative. Parachute hill was a great hangout spot many people got helped with their bikes up the hill many beer handups were vended and met many many nice folks.

Oh did I mention the mayor of Philly declared at the start of the race “handups are not a crime” That guys got my vote twice.

We pile back into the car, and head back to the house for some much needed warmth and house dog Rocky(thats mah buddy) before the after party. And yes, you in the back that’s after the party, and after that is the hotel lobby. well we all know where that tale goes.

Now remember how I kept saying “more on that later” I’ll gladly fill you in on what was going on there. A while back on this very blog(don’t bother looking nobody read it) I “interviewed” dave pryor  and recently it was announced on the Twitters if you wanted a hosting bid for 2015 you had to tweet or some such so I did. And we got a bid. Upon arrival in Philly all racers were given poker chips, and we as delegates our job was to convince/bribe/shmooze folks for their chips. I was under the impression that all  that happened at the after party.

Apparently it had been happening all weekend.

*record scratch noise*

As a group, we didn’t go to many of the events for the weekend because we chose to do other things. Hindsight being 20/20 we should have skipped the “tour of philly death ride” in lieu of the poker run. And I should have been on the delegate ride(which I didn’t know about)

So for all of you playing along at home we were double plus fucked.

So I start working the crowd, talking to people, collecting chips(every single one I appreciate greatly). They call the delegates up in front of the crowd and introduce them. And I’m strangely not up there….

Now I’m proper fucked.

I’m playing it cool publicly but you guys gotta know I was DYING on the inside and just terrified. I earn what chips I can, and head to meet the other delegates at a poker table.

Apparently they had booked a dealer to cover the game but due to the insane weather he couldn’t make it. I sit down with my chips, and I’m short stacked. Boston has more, Belgium has a ton more then Kentucky sits down.

They pulled out a mesh bag full of chips. 3 of the stacks were sealed. How did they get sealed stacks? Probably at all the events I should have done not the ones I did. I’ll never know the answer but I was backed into a corner and I had to work. My training rider once told me what to do when frustrated at work.

“close your eyes on the elevator, put yourself above the city, see your route, see the points, then make it rain lightning”

I’d only a handful of times truly used this advice a few times. This was one of them, the game starts and I just got to work.

From here on out I’m only going to refer to players as cities, makes it easier to tell the story.

Boston played conservatively He didn’t have a whole lot of chips either and so he was pretty guarded, but eventually fell to what I could read as a series of bad hands.

Belgium was hilarious, chip heavy and pretty drunk and eventually fell on a weak hand.

The Hodala Crew served as impartial observers to keep the game honest and also had chips of their own to put into play for influence. Due to an earlier conversation I thought I had their support.

They backed Louisville, shrinking what little hope I had to win. But I was at least up on chips from the start and went back to work.

I fucked up a flush draw losing a few stacks, won another and then it happened. I flopped a shit ball low straight. 2-3-4-5-6 It’s a trash hand but I had to run with it. I keep betting, keep louisville in, the pot grows. Then it happens, I win the hand. I didn’t have a running count but I think I had a majority of the table chips, maybe 60 percent, maybe 65. In my head I’m losing it. I know with a majority I can grind louisville out, play conservatively, let the blinds drag them down. it’ll take forever but I had a plan.

Then my plan gets, as many plans do. Torn assunder

The afterparty venue was kicking us out. Literally. So the organizers decide on one last hand, cards up. Winner takes all.

And I landed the worst hand of the night. And I lost, thus losing the bid for SSCXWC. I shake Louisvilles hand, congratulate them on a hell of a game. Hodala Sally congratulates me on a great game. Louisville is Announced upstairs as next year and I look for my team mates. I had that game, I know that. But rules are rules and I lost fair and square. I appreciate the chance to play, and thank the hodala crew for that whiskey about halfway through. I walk back upstairs, louisville is up on the stage cheering and I tell some of our supporters I didn’t take it.

I give my goodbye hugs and handshakes, saying goodbye to all my new friends all the while playing it cool, but I’ll admit to my one reader that my hands didn’t stop shaking for an hour. Endorphin hangovers are the worst of all, and until you’ve had one you haven’t lived.

I love you Philly, I love you SSCX, I love my team.

Mahalo

Dave

 

We met at a party once, but I certainly don’t remember.

SSCX is dead. Long live SSCX.

How does one cover SSCWC, well I’m gonna do it ham fistedly and poorly. If you didn’t see that coming you’re clealy new around here. Quite a while ago we decided to visit philly for SSCXWC and hindsight being 20/20 if you didn’t make the same decision you’re an idiot.

Teammates Will, Steve, Ashley, Paul and myself left cleveland on thursday morning and in true #getinthevan style we were way behind schedule. After a grueling 8 hours of laughing at possibly the most disgusting things said in a truck on the way to a bike race. Or in my experience the same shit thats said in any team van from club to tour pro level.

all the poop stories. Just all of them.

We arrived in Philly, went out for drinks and mexican with our incredibly gracious and awesome hosts steve and Lisa. Thanks you guys, from the bottom of my heart thank you. Some house beers were had, some Cleveland whiskey and we hit the hay.

Friday morning we decided to go on a tour of philly that a local bike shop was putting on. Most of us hadn’t been in years or never had been to philly so we were stoked.

Maybe philly has a different definition of “tour” then we had thought it was. Our tour guides took us on a bunch of the urban trails all over philly, which are amazing. There’s a 28 something mile loop with 1000 feet of climbing within 5 miles of city center. It’s flat out awesome riding.

It was also not what we were expecting to do. We had messenger bags, one gear and were pitifully underdressed. Thankfully they took pity on us and we stopped for a beer. at this point we decided to break away and head back to host steve’s house broken and defeated. Naps were had, and we decide to lay low that night because we were all pretty sore and Bilenky was the next day. Hindsight being 20/20 that was a poor decision but I’ll explain that later.

What can I say about Bilenky Junkyard Cross that hasn’t been said by your parents with the phrase “don’t do that”. Yes, all the videos/pics are true. It’s a race in a junkyard, laden with glass and steering columns. It’s also one of the most amazing things I’ve seen in a long time. Short course, lots of danger and tons of hecklers. Team Mate Alex while attempting the car barrier cracks his tooth. Yes you read that right my one reader, the only barrier was a car. Alex of course being a smart guy decides to go one more time. By this time we were perched up on top of a car watching the car/jump section(they built a ramp so you could in theory jump the car). Alex comes screaming into the straight and dismounts way early and starts sprinting and does something that was absolutely amazing. He throws his bike into the ramp and slides across the hood, his bike sails through the air and he does a damn near perfect starsky and hutch slide over the hood and the crowd goes nuts.

Much beers were had after that with Captain George, Canadian Jon and Captain George’s Brother Matt. We watched all the qualifiers and had an amazing time . Bilenky Junkyard Cross you might have my money for life. We realise at this point none of us have qualified for finals but we all can do the “everybody wins” race. Which is ok by all of us. We head back to relax at the house before going to Lucy’s Hat Shop for a party. The weekend had a ton of bar nights/events which were a load of fun. Lucy’s hat shop degrades into a rampant dance party which even included the likes of Captain George and our Resident Canadian Math Guru. I met one of the Hodala crew in a quieter moment and he asks me

“why weren’t you on the delegates ride” What delegates ride? I didn’t know about that. But more on that later.

We head back to the house but not until we aqcuired our beer jawns. And if you don’t have a beer jawn you hate america.

It was nice to meet so many people I only follow on twitter or intstagram. It was nice to put a face to Tati Cycles, and hug Chip Baker, although he never handed me a Dales. It was nice to finally meet Hodala Sally and crew and see Craig again. Ellen Shirrel is one of the nicest people and I thank you for your support. Ali, Ashley, shit I met so many people who were it’d be ten posts a day to tell you how amazing they all were. For an unsanctioned race full of dirtbags I met only the nicest of people. SSCX in my opinion isn’t the problem and I see that now. It’s the solution, in all due honesty I was considering giving it up and going the traditional race track with gears but this weekend convinced me of otherwise. I fell in love with SSCX all over again and the band of merry marauders that ride them. Everyone was incredible and governed by one phrase that was repeated at all events all weekend by organizer Dave.

“don’t be a dick”

No one complained, Plenty of people cheated who know how much sandbagging and bandsagging occured. No one checked lawyer tabs if someone fell you stopped and made sure they were ok not kept going. If being a miscreant Single Speeder is wrong I never want to be right.

I’ll cover the finals and sunday either tonight or tomorrow. I gotta get ready to go to work.

Mahalo

Dave

609 on a Saturday

And I’m awake maybe I should just become a barista and call it a day. Slow roll of late around here for all of us. We’ve got a couple cats and kittens down in cincy for cincy 3. I hope they remember to submit race reports, otherwise I absolutely will make them up. In lighter news a few of us threw together a fundraiser/party to help defray the costs of going to SSCXWC in philly if you’re around on the 16th I’ll be guest bartending at AJ Roccos downtown from 7 until they toss us out. So come on down, have a sandwich and lets hang. I miss the NEOCX crew since we’re barely racing nowadays due to pseudo wacky scheduling. SCUM CITY SUPPORT

All’s quiet around here really. It’s been well over a week since J Karp called me crying at 2 am. New team record to be honest. Also Captain George hasn’t broken a bike part in like 16 hours. I really wish I had more to tell you guys, but I don’t.

 

Mahallo

Dave

The LBS is Dead, Long live the LBS.

As many of you know I’m an avid user of the internet. I buy things, I have a very active and almost nearly unread twitter feed. I think less people follow me on twitter then read this blog, which at last count is 1. So you know the chatter on the series of tubes AKA the internet is that the LBS is gonna go under, I mean why pay retail and have to physically go somewhere and get something when UPS will gladly leave the exact same item on your door for a lot less. Sounds great right? It is, until you’re bent over and boned by a mechanical.

I ran into a friend and she was putting together a ride from cleveland to youngstown. It was under the Bike Cleveland banner which if you know me you know I have an…. interesting….. stance on what they’re doing. I’m generally supportive of folks that try to get people to ride bikes. They’re pretty rad if you haven’t tried I’d suggest it. So a few people were quite alarmed I would sign onto a bike cleveland ride. Dave? Advocating? being seen with bike advocates? For shame… for shame…

Which makes no sense to me. I might be glaringly critical of bike advocates, to the point of seeming almost bordering on what could involve a restraining order and a really hilarious item in the police blotter but I rather do like the people themselves. Plus any of you who know me outside of this blog you know I needed a day just on the bike. No picks, no stops, no radio. Just a bike, for a whole day.

So I said I’d do it, what’s the worst that could happen I ride a bike. And the bike might break.

Fast forward a while and another messenger returns my road bike a couple days before I need it. He rode it to Washington DC and borrowed it because he lacked a geared bike. My “road bike” really isn’t much of a road bike It’s steel frame fits wide tires more a do all machine rather then a road bike.

Yes, you in the middle in the ICP Jersey. Yes I know it’s heavy I’m keenly aware. Road Racing? Jesus tapdancing christ have that man removed. No I don’t race road, hell I can barely tolerate watching it let alone pay money to do it. Not my scene man.

So I put my bike back together and check it out, the brakes don’t work, the shifting is fucked and it’s wednesday night so I get on the phone to fellow SS racer/wrench paul begging him to at least figure out the brakes because I’d agreed to do the ride friday and I can survive on shitty shifting. He swings by my house, picks the bike up and takes it to his shop and fixes it. Then drops it back off thursday night on his way home(for the record he lives in my hood and I’m actually on the way home)[I'd have gladly gone and picked it up but it wasn't necessary]. Instances like this are why the LBS is gonna do just fine, yeah you can buy a bike on the internet for 20 percent less. Do you know how to assemble a bike out the box? It’s not crazy complicated but theres certainly some know how necessary to not mess it up. Oh you want a fitting now? BTW fittings are included at certain shops if you spend X amount of dollars on your bike. You didn’t know that? Of course you didn’t because you’re too busy looking for a bike on a computer screen and not looking at an actual bike, sold by a person, who really likes bikes and knows a lot.

So do the math on your 20 percent savings. You’re gonna have to have it assembled at X cost and if you really want to have it run perfectly you’re gonna have to get a fitting at X cost.

Bike cost-20 percent+X cost of assembly+fitting=Most likely retail or slightly higher depending on model.

I hope you find that math a little enlightening.

 

In closing I had a nice ride with the Bike Cleveland crew it was great to take a day off work and just ride. All day, no BS just on a bike. Delicious tacos were had, a couple beers were consumed and I slept like the dead last night.

 

Mahallo

Dave

Scum City Racing, now with 100 percent more #Bangerz

So I figure I better get to work soon. Nah my clients don’t wake up until 10 anyhow. The team is enjoying the bizarre one race a month schedule here at NEOCX but mostly our livers are thanking us. Weather is turning cold, it’s really nice to have to wear a jacket every day. And now is the time of the year where I do some recruiting aka

THE LIST

So you want to join scum city racing these are what you have to do.

1. Nobody has given Captain George a sandwich. Nobody, I’m disgusted

2. You have to talk to Will on the phone and he can’t mumble once.

3. If you see wiley vet Jay Karp you have to give him a ten dollar tip and potentially some cookies. You can skip step one if you give J cookies.

4. You have to buy dinner for Nikki. Amex black cards or high limit helps. I’d suggest a buffet.

5. Deliver Sushi to Mountain Road Berea for Paul.

Well I’m off to the jorb. Keep it rubber side down people.

Another race in the books

Another embarassing performance by me. But I am beyond stoked the team is doing so well this year. Year number 3 here at Scum City Racing feels a lot like year one. With 100 percent less Captain george and 100 percent less me dealing with captain George.

George is needy and breaks bikes. Sometimes he needs a cuddle sometimes he needs a sram shifter. Either way he’s nigh on intolerable and drives me nuts.

That being said I kinda miss his insane ass.

I’m happy the team is doing so well, it genuinely makes me happy to see us grabbing podiums again. So to the team members(who don’t read this in fact no one does) Please keep doing what you’re doing. I love you all and I want to build this rambling shit show of crazy into something. What I have no idea it’s still up in the air. Could be a great cycling team or we could become career criminals. I’m OK by either outcome. I’ll keep you folks full of beer and whiskey and I’ll keep being in your corner if you’re willing to race and get us to where we end up.

Great things are built not designed.

 

Sorry for the melancholy post today guys I’ll get back to normal real soon.

Mahalo

Dave