Thursday, November 30, 2006


In keeping with tradition, the first Sunday after Thanksgiving is our day to snag ourselves a xmas tree. Mission accomplished. We went to a tree farm a half a mile away and sawed a nice 6 footer down. It looks real nice. The Wifey does a great job of making it look sweet. I have zero decorative skill so I pretty much stay away for that bit.

We had two turkey feasts. Erin’s grandparents on Thanksgiving and we made our own bird on Sunday. It was our free turkey from Weis for spending all our money there. I always use the Alton Brown method of cooking. If you’re a fan of the Food Network then you have to be a fan of Good Eats. I love that show. Anyway, our turkey was perfectly juicy. Very yummy.

I’m still having a tough time believing it’s actually a week beyond thanksgiving already when I feel like it still should be a week or so until Halloween. Crazy how fast time is rolling by. Little Jr’s due-date is just 4 weeks away now. I think the panic of not being ready for a child will soon grip me.

In the past two days I have delivered a home gym to Williamsport and Mifflinburg. In the parlance of The Kenny, “That works”. Nothing beats getting to leave the shop for most of the day. Tuesday I was on my own and Wednesday I was assisted by KHam. Kyle is having girl issues. Not like I’m the Love Dr or anything. Somewhere, somehow, Fred is channeling his superpowers from the great unknown on the female subject……maybe I can offer young Hammaker some advice.

I haven’t spoke of any hockey lately. Maybe because I’m still disgusted by how the Flyers have started the season. They’ve played better of late so it’s not unthinkable to see them make the playoffs but, really, what would another first round thumping prove? Get rid of the slow blue-liners (Hebe. What’s a blue-liner?) and let these young guys gel a little more and I think they’ll be just fine.

The Phillies missed out on a couple big bats but I think they need to worry about pitching more-so than anything else. They scored an assload of runs last year but also gave up an assload. One good starter and some better set-up relievers in the bully should do the trick.

I keep forgetting to mention how cool it was to see the younger Hebe completing his first ‘cross race. Way-to-go Eric! Should we look forward to trading paint in the B’s next year?

My plan for winter commuting was centered around a bike that I found out is not available until mid-January. It’s a single speed ‘cross bike. I want to try this fixed gear thing just to see what the buzz is all about. Well, being that I can’t get one for a while, I went to Plan B. Working in a bike shop for such a long time has it’s plus side when it comes to junk in the garage. Last year a customer came in with a Trek 5500 that he crashed. He blew out the fork and had just a smidge of underside headtube damage. I ordered him a crash replacement frame & fork and sent him on his way. Upon futher inspection the headtube damage isn’t really all that severe considering the sturdy alloy cups placed inside. So I kept the frame and hung it in the garage. Until now. I bought a matching Trek fork on ebay and dusted off the rest of the parts I needed to throw together a nice little single speeder. I ordered a fixed cog which should arrive today.

So far I’ve really enjoyed it. It’s definitely harder than a geared bike and I haven’t even made it fixed yet. Should be fun.

Pictures @ 11. L8

Thursday, November 23, 2006


Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Monday, November 20, 2006

Karl Hungus

I had a good weekend. From what I gather from the MAC CX races this weekend were a tad on the muddy side. I can’t say that I’m disappointed that I didn’t race.

Instead I spent some productive time shopping on Saturday and then some productive time in the garage Sunday.

The Wifey and I started Saturday off with a visit to Cornerstone. I rode for a little over an hour then met her there. After coffee/tea we went over to Colonial Park for a little shopping. My shopping list for this xmas is a new digital camera and a new digital camcorder. We don’t want to miss anything once Little Jr arrives. So, I went to Circuit City and had a sales lackey run down the plusses and minuses. Now I know exactly what I want, I just need to wait until the sales start rolling fast and furious to get some good deals.

After shopping we went home and watched a good football game. Ohio State v Michigan was every bit as good as advertised. Although I disagree with a rematch unless SoCal or Florida takes a shit in the next couple weeks.

Sunday would be my day to get out and ride but I’ll be damned if I just didn’t feel like it. So I didn’t and felt good about it. I was in the garage figuring out some bike things. I need to move some product. At one point yesterday I had three bare frames hanging from hooks. I think I have it figured out now but I’m still not 100% sure. I want to get a new bike, heavily modified of course, for the purpose of commuting so it’s a matter of deciding what goes and how it goes; complete or frame & fork?

Short work week. I get a four day weekend coming up. If I do anything for PA States on Saturday it will be in a spectator capacity. Probably not even that. Sorry Zach.

Most likely I will spend Saturday whipping up one of our two free turkeys for a triptophan-fest Saturday eve. Aaahhh yes, that’s what I’m talking about.

I was laughing my ass off at all the Lebowski references in the MAC email list over the weekend. I wonder how many people have no idea WTF was being referenced? It seemed like more than a couple. Best movie ever.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Ouch! Again

Thanks to Gina Harshman for capturing these fantastic photos of me busting out my latest Break dancing maneuvers mid -race.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Frenchy Fuqua

I’ve waited to tell my Lower Allen story mainly to let my disappointment subside. I wanted to do well, just like any and every week, but, considering this is my hometown race held just 2.5 miles from my front door, this one was a bitter pill to swallow.

No points = no call-up. No worries. Only 50(??!!) B’s showed up so starting up front would have helped but not near as much as an 80 or 90 field like we saw at Charm and Granogue. Last year I started at least 50 deep and just picked dudes off all race long to finish 14th. Not a bad plan to stick with this year. I had a good start. I tucked in and followed The Really Fast Young Dude’s wheel for the first lap. Not a bad place to be. There wasn’t a ton of separation after one lap.

Lap two after the barriers on the way over to the pits two dudes in front of me were side-by-side and both bobbled and slowed opening a gap between the two. I darted through them, aggressively but certainly not in a dirty fashion. One of the riders thought I wronged him in some way and sprinted to catch me and proceeded to tell me, in these exact words; “I will beat the F-ing shit out of you if you ever touch me again! I don’t care if we’re racing or not!” OK. Keep in mind we’re in the second lap battling for 25th spot in a weekend B cyclocross race. He rode for Wissahickon. I don’t know for certain who it was but I know it wasn’t Chris, Adam, or Eric. Whatever. It was pretty much the most ignorant thing I’ve ever had spoken to me. I wanted to confront the dude after the race but with that kind of anger you never know what sort of shiv he could have wielded at me. Whatever.

Anyway, half a lap later in one of the zig-zaggy off-camber turns a different dude crashed immediately in front of me. I was setting up to pass him so I was probably closer to him than I should have been. He lost his edge and I went down and ran over him and then his bike which separated me from my bike in a flying sort of fashion only to land chest first on his now vertical facing front wheel. It knocked the air right out of me. You couldn’t have placed that wheel in a more perfect spot to do exactly what it did. I could only lay there and try to collect myself. I could barely move. I heard some grumpy racers trying get through yelling about blocking the way but I was pretty dazed. It seemed like minutes but I got up and checked myself and then my bike and got going again and realized that I could still catch some people but after a lap of riding around I was just totally out of it.

This is the first time I dropped out of a race. Made especially hard by the fact that this was the first race my Mom and little nephew DJ have attended and the countless other family and friends showing up to cheer. I was pretty bummed. All I have to show for it is a bruise on my chest about a foot long in the perfect shape of a CX tire. I guess we all have days like this, I just wish mine could have been somewhere else.

The Elite race was as good as I thought. I caught up with Matt beforehand to chit chat. I met him up at Serotta back in March. He mentioned that he’s selling his bike shop to concentrate fully on racing. Interesting to hear a 23 year old say he’s selling his business to race bikes full time. I hope he does well. He had decent results on the road this season and is certainly doing well this fall. 3rd place at LA and another win at HP following his win last weekend up in New England.

Leech had a nice race. Nate was pretty happy. Horner is funny to watch. Totally cruising and then gets to the barriers and looks like a mediocre ballerina doing little hops across the dance floor. It was cool to see him race. KHam badly sprained his ankle warming up and had to DNS. Sissy. VisitPaRay was good again in the B’s.

Mike felt pretty good about Saturday’s event. I haven’t heard anything but praise. Every year he seems to improve upon an already fantastic event. Nice job. Legendary.

I did abso-freakin-lutely NOTHING Sunday. Erin’s parents came over for some Football and dinner. The Steelers v Saints game was pretty damn entertaining. The Steelers running back, Willie Parker, nearly broke the team record for yards in a game held by? Our man, Frenchy. What a great name. I then grilled some turkey burgers w/ mushrooms, bacon, and swiss. A side of sweet potatoes and some baked beans. That was it. Day over.

I had another phenomenal massage this morning. I had to point out the two giant bruises on my right thigh to Deb so she could be a little cautious. Man, they hurt.

Chris mentioned that he’s seen a picture(s) of my crash. If I can find it I will certainly post it here as I’m sure it’s pretty amusing.

Friday, November 10, 2006


Lower Allen CX. I worked a short day today with the idea of going over to the park and helping Mike tape the course. As planned I got there a little after 3pm and low and behold everything was done. Seems as though The Legend and The Really Fast Young Dude had spent all morning/afternoon knocking it out. Zach took a “sick day” from school to help out. Good kid. I like Zach. He’s very charismatic about bikes.

So, the only thing I really had to do was get in a few laps of the course to get a head-start on tomorrow. First of all, as noted in an earlier post at this very site, a couple subtle little changes have turned this course into a speedway. One area in particular is waaay faster now. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still plenty hard, but VERY fast and super flowing. I think anyone who doesn’t like this race tomorrow is nuts. The only thing it really lacks is any kind of run-up/running section, which is fine by me. The sandpit is firm right now but I guess after a couple races it’ll get churned up some. Maybe a run/ride decision later by the B’s and Masters.

Unfortunately, on one of my recon laps I cut a fast corner a little too hot and took a serious digger in some greasy stuff. I must have slid and tumbled for 15 feet. All along my bike was under me and then on me and then under me again. It knocked the wind outta me and gave me a huge bruise on my right thigh. I felt like a turd head. I just cut the corner too sharp and lost my front wheel. I know now how to take it tomorrow but my right leg is getting tighter by the minute. Knucklehead.

I hope everyone has a great time tomorrow. Mike, once again, has poured a lot of time and effort into this day. Thanks man.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Lower Allen CX is just a couple days away. The B’s pre-reg is getting there but certainly nowhere near last years 76. Where did all those dudes go? I’m way more interested in the Elite field. No Trebon, Wicks, or Wells would at first thought give you the impression of a sub-par race. Not so fast my friends. I think Saturdays Elite race has the potential to be a MAJOR throwdown. Hebe told me that this weekends MAC UCI’s are the only UCI’s in the country. The big boys want to stay home and rest before another Left Coast GP Double next weekend. All the others are looking for those precious UCI points. It should be a phenomenal race. I really want to see this bad-ass mullet Driscoll is wearing.

Don’t overlook the CX debut of BBP, or otherwise known as The Brother Legend. Look for Eric in the C race. Go get ‘em Thotis.

I had a song in my head all day. It wasn’t one of those annoying songs. Well, it was, but not for the obvious reason. What TV program did I watch short little 5 minute skits of Simon in the Land of Chalk Drawings? It was a show within a show. So, what was the main show? Driving me nuts.

Where’s Kenny?

Big big taste, part 2

I complained to the makers of Honeycomb about the change they made. I merely wanted to voice my disapointment in the taste change. Maybe if enough people bitch about it we can get our old Honeycomb back. These are the small battles I wage. Round one? Push. No mention was made in their reply about an avalanche of negative feedback but I did get my $3 back.

Hi Don,

Thank you for visiting

The formulation of POST, HONEYCOMB, Crunchy Sweetened Corn and Oat Cereal has indeed changed and I'm sorry you were disappointed with your most recent purchase.

Your experience is important to us. I'm sending you reimbursement to replace this product, via first class mail, which you should receive within 7-10 business days.

Our staff works very hard to provide the best tasting and satisfying products to the preferences of most consumers. Your opinion about the product is important to us as well and I will share your comments with our product development staff.

Thank you again for taking the time to share your thoughts.

Kim McMiller Associate Director, Consumer Relations

I'm coordinating my next efforts as we speak.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Pig stomach?

Saturday was the first time I worked in what seemed like a month. It was pretty low key. Just three of us and frankly that’s all that was needed. I sold another treadmill. So far this season my success rate selling fitness equipment has been pretty high. I still need to brush up on the new lines we’re carrying. It got so easy the past few years having the same products available. Now I actually have to do a little homework to get the details ironed out on this new stuff.

Saturday night we had dinner at Erin’s parents. Good. We got home and landed on the couch for a good lounge.

Sunday I woke up feeling like I didn’t really want to ride even though the forecast was for a nice day. I stewed over it for a little while then decided to roll out my MTB. Yep, first time this year. In fact it has been almost exactly one year since I rode it last with The Legend over at Pinchot. I’m all for commemorating occasions such as riding my mtb so I headed over to Pinchot again. There are some decent trails there. Nothing in the way of climbing. Mostly rollers and flat stuff, but it’s still a good time. I saw a few hunters out scouting their turf. I saw a couple other mountain bicyclers tooling around as I did a big lap around the lake. All in all it was a fun time. My technical skill was lacking in spots but not as bad as I was expecting. A 29’r would be phenomenal over there. On my drive over I was tempted to stop at The Silver Lake to join all the other rednecks for a Hog Maw breakfast. Uuch! The sign out front said Hog Maw and the place was packed. I’ll pass.

Hebe-cross is this coming Saturday. I was over at LA last Thursday getting in some laps with a few efforts when Mike showed up in full Lilly work attire to show me the changes he’s planning for the race. It’s cool how just a few subtle little differences to the course can change the complexion quite a bit in certain areas. One section in particular will get A LOT faster. Should be fun.

Erin has been getting more and more comments about her belly size. Little Jr is starting to really claw and punch and kick to get out. The other night we were situated on the couch together where my leg was against her belly. I got poked hard enough that I thought Erin was trying to get my attention. It was actually Little Jr trying to get my attention. I can’t imagine having something like that going on inside all day for months.

Enjoy the week.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Medium Hot

Phew, I’m beat. Today was the first time in a month that I had a morning off from work. Granted, even on an early day I’m at work at 10am. Most people have a half days work in by then. I got out for a nice long road ride. 45 miles worth. Awesome day for it. I headed over and climbed Whiskey Springs Rd. I didn’t realize until I was almost over the top that I had a soft rear tire. That made me feel better about climbing like crap. It was certainly beautiful being out in the woods, sorta. The foliage is a bit past peak but still quite scenic. And that autumnal scent in the air is pure therapy.

Once I made it to work I saw some good news arrived via the UPS-tard. I’ve been hassling all of our bike sales reps to send us some branded goodies to use for the Lower Allen Hebe-cross. Evan from Trek kicked in a couple weeks ago. I think he might show up with the Trek tent, which would be real cool. Today Giant and Bianchi stuff showed up. Indoor trainers from Giant and bottles, t-shirts, and caps from Bianchi. The Giant trainer is pretty sweet. I use one. Not often but when I actually trick myself into riding indoors I’m glad I have a nice trainer. All we’re waiting on now is a goodie box from QBP which should arrive any day. They always send cool stuff. It’s real cool to have good people representing the lines we carry. Much appreciated.

I think I’ve eaten about 12lbs of Halloween chocolate since Sunday. I love that stuff. Chocolate is good for you, right?

I have tomorrow off. I can’t wait to wake up and have very little to do. No pressure to get anything done other than put another quality ride in and clean little Elwood’s shitbox. He needs to learn how to do that himself. Lazy ass.

A jar of magnificent salsa straight from BTI, a supplier of ours from New Mexico. Yum!

That Big Big Taste

I was EXTREMELY disappointed to open a fresh new box of Honeycomb yesterday to find the clowns who make it have changed the formula slightly. I very much love Honeycombs. It is one of the few "tastey" cereals that doesn't use hydrogenated oils. That shit'll kill ya, man. So I rip open a box and start powering down by the shovel full only to notice the taste ain't quite the same. I guess thy've tried to make it even healthier by using whole grains. I applaud their efforts for going healthier but damn it, not at the expense of that Big Big Taste. Oh well, there's always Honeynut Cheerios. Mmmmm.

It's November freaking 1st already! My how the time flies. No racing last weekend so I'll leave you with a couple pics from Wissy a couple Sundays ago.

mid-race - doing well - feeling good

and then this happened - a group of 5 just became a group of 4

I pirated these pictures from Andrew Albright, I think. If so, thanks. If not, sorry. Happy Dia de los Muertos tomorrow.