Thursday, March 26, 2009

A Fresh Start Begins on Tuesday of next week...Expect a change for the better!

In an effort to cleanse myself both physically and meta-physically for the upcoming racing season and to further gain advantage over those that are impure, I have scheduled a colonoscopy for Monday, March 30…
Think gentle, sympathetic thoughts of me as you ride to work on Monday morning for the author will be posed in a compromising position starting around 7:45 am. Given my tempestuous, spirited genes coupled with a propensity for fast bikes, fine stouts, Cuban cigars, and beautiful women I am predisposed towards intestinal polyps and IRS audits. Though a vigorous man far from decline, even still in my prime, on Sunday I begin the "preparations" for my third colonoscopy. So even though I am no rookie to the procedure, it will be a new experience for me as my old colonoscopy-beau has moved on to the greener pastures of Texas (after a little set-back involving a younger women, a sailboat, a shotgun, and a chase scene involving a white Bronco, etc…Let it suffice to say a legal matter of which he was ultimately exonerated). So to be honest, I am a bit like a little school girl going out for her first junior high date— a little anxious, a little nervous, and a little hopeful that it all plays out all right at the end of the evening. I can’t help but to consider things like; what should I wear? Should I rent a Tux? Do I bring a boutonniere? What kind of music will they play over the sound system? What if they play a slow one??? What will we talk about? Does he like Lance? Do I wear my boxers with the red hearts? Is it impolite to ask him how much itz gonna cost me?

In any event, I picked Monday ‘cuz I am using the colonoscopy as a kind of starting point for a personal renaissance going forward. In other words, the colonoscopy represents a tipping-point regarding a concerted effort at forcing a major transitional character shift for the writer with an eye on self-improvement. In years past, I was self-absorbed and condescending. Come Monday afternoon, I will be selfless and amicable. Prior to the colonoscopy, I was Kafkaesque, venomous, and conservative. Hence forth (after scope) I shall become Gandhi-like, benign, and liberal. Before the scope I was bloated and compacted, unwieldy and verbose. After the scope I shall become agile and streamlined, regimented and calculating. Before the scope I was flatulent, conceited, and ethnocentric. Post scope I shall become humble, reticent, and worldly. Pre-scope I was quick to judge, surly, and xenophobic. Once scoped, I shall become tolerant, courteous, and holistic. Look for a new & improved passionate, considerate, and empathetic humanist come Tuesday, March 31, 2009 for on that date I begin anew…

Seriously….if you are in your mid-forties or beyond…keep-in-mind the following--- [and schedule yourself for a colonoscopy...especially if you have a family history]
According to the Center for Disease Control & Prevention
Colorectal cancer is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in the U.S. and if detected early, one of the most curable. In 2005 (the most recent year for which statistics are currently available):
72,007 men and 69,398 women were diagnosed with colorectal cancer.
26,781 men and 27,259 women died from colorectal cancer.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Ragnarök 105 (on April 18th) is the first of three "spring classics." Do the math:
The Ragnarok 105, the Trans-Iowa, and the Almanzo 100...Over five hundred miles of racing, all on remote gravel, all FREE with lots of great prizes including whiskey and beer, all in April & early May, and all within pretty easy driving distance of Duluth...How great is that!!! Compare that to the opportunistic venture capitalists that have taken over the management of the once pretty cool, 24 Hours @ 9 mile near Wausau [now charging $340+ to ride loops on a B-/C+ civilian-tamed, carbon-friendly, domesticated mtb course, with little pay-out, and plus ya gotta buy a US Cycling License...] :)

Friday, March 20, 2009

The Republican Leadership has really made some significant changes since Rove and da Boyz moved back to TEXAS:

Mr. Steele...what an impressive guy!!! I sleep better at night knowing that these guyz are helping to run our wonderful federal on:

The Republican National Committee Chairman, Michael Steele, has weighed in on climate change. In a March 6 radio appearance that is only now percolating through the blogosphere, Mr. Steele apparently fielded a skeptic's question about global warming. As transcribed by the liberal blog, the Huffington Post , Mr. Steele thanked the questioner and replied this way:

"We are cooling. We are not warming. The warming you see out there, the supposed warming, and I am using my finger quotation marks here, is part of the cooling process. Greenland, which is now covered in ice, it was once called Greenland for a reason, right? Iceland, which is now green. Oh I love this. Like we know what this planet is all about. How long have we been here? How long? Not very long."
Mr. Steele -
the originator of the "drill baby drill" slogan that dominated last year's Republican National Convention - appears to be aligning himself with Republican Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma, who has denounced the idea of a global warming catastrophe as "the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people," and said that many of the Obama administration's early moves amount to " environmental thuggery ."

Monday, March 16, 2009

DBD #10 in the books...

March is psychologically a tough transitional period for the DEATH & DEVASTATION MEGA-Power Sports Community. The carefully groomed sno-jet race trails are rapidly melting, the full-on ATV season of ruin doesn’t get going for a few weeks until the grass begins to grow, the Harley-Davidson bar rides are several months away, the jet-ski season is a good three months out, and the guyz don’t get to motor in and shoot up the woods for at least five months. Also the fact that this dedicated outdoor community has lost their beloved Neo-Con leader to a liberal “intellectual” environmentalist, combined with the fact that the banks won’t lend them anymore money so they can buy this year’s new MerCruiser 30-ft. Eliminator Daytona Bass Boat with twin MerCruiser 496 Horse power MAG HO big-block V8s, have all collectively had the effect of really amping up frustration, even rage, out there on the roads.

Hence the theme of this DBD Training Report: Elemental angst felt by weighty "slednecks" over the end of the snowmobiling season, coupled with the significant time-gap until rogue ATV missions onto pristine wilderness areas and long bar runs on thunderous Harley Davidson motorcycles manifests into road rage directed at deer herd and local DBD. Deer submit while DBD responds with defiance.

Covert DBD training session #10 (10 of 15) commenced at the relatively late-in-the-day start time of 6:00 a.m. on Sunday, March 15th or 1150 hours out from the start of the Trans-Iowa. The plan was to ride for XXX hours along the beautiful shore of Lake Superior. During the course of these DBD exercises there inevitably develops a series of poignant themes. This work out session was no different as several interesting subject matters came to the fore during our XXX hour effort. They included: a) the ability of XX to exert seemingly unmerciful rigor upon XY even given the fact that XY was suffering from a severe flu like condition. XX’s unrelenting subscription to the attainment of the training goal, while fanatical is at the same time effective; b) the beauty of the spring break up within the context of Lake Superior; c) the ease with which one can ride a bicycle when not confronted with sub-zero wind chills; and d) the predacious violence perpetrated upon the wild life (and potentially to cyclists) when a bunch of hung-over “sled-necks” gather into a convoy of heavily sno-MiG trailered dual-cabbed super-charged trucks and head home from the Northland to the Twin Cities (and beyond) on a warm Sunday afternoon in mid-March.

Not surprisingly, the theme that dominated was the extraordinary violent carnage the trucks did to scores of deer that we saw blasted along the way. XX poetically laments the scene of the numerous deaths on the day after the session as he rode his bike to work, “I saw a deer this morning on my ride into work, on which I felt deep, deep fatigue in my legs. Anyway, this deer and I, our eyes met from a short distance, maybe 15 to 20 feet, we both bowed our heads as if in a silent homage to those that have passed on the Deer's Road to Baghdad, or otherwise known as the "Highway of Death". I will forever downcast my eyes upon meeting with deer in the future. It will serve as my personal commitment to honoring the memories of those lost on the highway dominated by 'slednecks.'"

There were dozens killed along our route, but two were exceptionally gruesome. Suffice to write that these were grim scenes involving freshly killed animals that took direct hits from huge trucks traveling at incredible speeds. Seeing dead deer along the roads are common sights, and both of us are tough men, but these two particular scenes took us aback, causing an uneasy silence. XX and the writer were amazed at how crazy fast the majority of these trucks (with their unwieldy huge snowmobile trailers in-tow) were going. It seemed as though they even increased their erratic speed upon seeing us on the shoulder. At one point a convoy of them passed us so close that we felt like we would be drawn into their wheels. The leader swerved at us and then laid on the horn, scaring the hell out of us. Of course we didn’t take it personal…and yet responded frequently and with gusto the universal symbol of discontent and even automatically toward the conclusion of the ride…We both feel like we are on the right track for the Spring Formal prep…and therefore thank the above community for their contribution to our training.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

New Glaris...Thank you!!!

Sure our banks are dysfunctional, our cars are junk, our manufacturing is dinosaur-like, and our health care is out of reach for most of us...Yet we still got dedicated guyz that can brew a fine barley product, and I am NOT talking about Pabst or the like...
Uff-da by New Glaris...a small little operation in southern Wisconsin...
"Here is a Bock brewed to appease the Gods of Winter. Hearty and full-bodied this is a "Big" bier. Brewed in the Reinheitsgebot tradition, our Bock comes by its mahogany hue naturally. You can expect this bier to be complex and smooth with deep chocolate and coffee undertones, complementing the rich bouquet. No matter if you choose to enjoy our Bock before, during or after dinner, remember to serve at about 48°F. Because like many good things in life... the warmer Bock is, the sweeter it gets."
Style: Bock . Flavor :Smooth deep chocolate and coffee undertones
Alcohol: 6.75% alcohol by volume

Saturday, March 7, 2009

RIGHT NOW there are some guyz up in Alaska fightin' the good fight...I am soooo Impressed...

RIGHT NOW as I sit comfortable in my little abode, there are some tough enduro-guyz up in Alaska fightin' the good fight...I am so impressed for it is such a huge endeavor of honor...When I told Mallory about the race from Knik to Nome via the Iditarod Trail, he wept "tears of joy." He exclaimed in an uncharacteristic emotional bittersweet rapture, "If I didn't have this damned legal thing about being dead-and-all hanging over my head, I'd be right there with them, but I am with them in spirit, I promise you that!!!!" It was an inspiring, albeit confusing statement, but I got the gist of it... FYI: I lived in Koyuk, Alaska (near Nome and on the Iditarod Trail via the Norton Sound and Koyuk river intersection) from 1990 to 1992 and someday I shall return to that village on my way to Nome via my trusty Rosinante....

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

An open letter to those guilty of transforming these once proud, contributing members of their communties...

The names have been changed to protect the innocent…

Dear Mr. Guitar Ted, Associate TI Race Organizers, TI Sponsors, et. al:

The purpose of this correspondence is to officially inform you of the fact that a substantial number of relatives, business/school partners, and clients/students on behalf of Plaintiff 1 (TE) and Plaintiff 2 (CF) have collectively retained my legal services, as a member in good standing with the Minnesota State Bar Association, in a desperate effort to seek financial redress from those responsible for the drastic and profound devolution of these once proud, functioning, and balanced aforementioned gentlemen. Due to the fact that TE and CF are at this time incapable of coherent thought, those directly affected by their moral declines have decided to bring a class action law suit against those of whom are most directly involved in this egregious affair. Therefore, it is our firm’s opinion that you (and your associates/sponsors, et. al), as the race director of the Trans-Iowa (TI), is one of several complicit parties that have acted in concert to promote the deterioration of these once well adjusted, decent, middle-aged family men. Note: Others under legal consideration for monetary reparations to the injured parties aforementioned are affiliated with several other like minded “endurance cycling” albeit counterproductive, even cultish events, including the Arrowhead 135, the Almanzo 100, and the WEMS series). Note also that at this time our firm is in the initial gathering stage of obtaining information from other sources pertaining to the dramatic moral decline of several other once respectable middle aged men that have also recently begun to train for and participate in these so-called “endurance cycling events.”

To date on behalf of the plaintiffs and their legal guardians, I have filed the proper documents and legal briefs with the Saint Louis County Attorney’s General Department, begun to develop a theory of the case, and have embarked on the actual fact-finding segment of my work. Consequently I have obtained sworn depositions from many persons close to both TE and CF and the picture they paint is one of a steady decline in both mental faculties and perspective world views. All involved report a systemic narrowing of the two men’s frame of reference to the point of total myopia and obsessive amoral allegiance to what the men refer to as simply, “THE ROAD.” For example, TE’s committed wife will ask in a quiet resigned voice, “T, honey what do you have planned for later today?” And inevitably TE will respond in a robotic monotone, “The Road, there is only THE ROAD, for the TI is just around the corner and then there are the WEMS races.” CF’s charming little girl will anxiously ask her father, “Daddy, can we maybe go skiing this weekend like we used to do?” And of course, it is always the same response from CF, “There is only The Road, there is no time to play, I must get more time on THE ROAD, the TI is only weeks away and then there is the Almanzo 100.” All agree, beyond any reasonable doubt, that these “D.B.D.” sessions have intensified in length and breath of bizarre commitment and absurdity as TE and CF ready themselves for your race! To date, I have been unable to decipher what indeed these three letters, D-B-D stand for, but I assure you it is not a healthy or productive epithet. Yet, I can tell you that these D.B.D. sessions are a direct result of your race and I intend to prove this key point in a civil court of law.

The following is a recent case-in-point: On Sunday, March 1st, 2009, TE and CF left their respective homes just a few minutes pass 4:00 a.m. to embark on yet another one these sessions of which they have come to regard as their “D.B.D. Trans-Iowa training rides.” Of course, given the time and season, it was pitch-black out and seven degrees below zero combined with a fifteen to twenty miles-an-hour head wind, making for an extremely frigid morning. These meteorological figures we know to be true as the National Weather Service is my source. The rest of what happened on this rather typical “DBD” ride, however, is based on the constrained and confused testimonies of CF and TE, both of whom, in terms of lucidity fall way outside the confines of what this firm’s psychologist considers “normal.” Below are two brief excerpts from an official, legally-binding transcribed, verbatim discussion I had with TE and CF regarding this most recent DBD session. The taped discussions were done alone with just me and the plaintiffs individually. TE initially discusses aspects of the DBD ride followed by CF’s account of the same scenario [Take note of the obvious psychosis, but also remember that these were, until recently, normally functioning and educated, even sophisticated men. Note: There may yet be a cure for TE, but I am afraid that CF is too far gone]:

As I am currently spending every day and night thinking about the upcoming Trans Iowa, I contemplate my love/hate relationship with this portion of my training. Training for the event requires one to completely "shock" the body from time to time, forcing it to respond to greater distances and harsher conditions in order to be ready for anything. The TI not only requires you to be physically fit, but mentally fit or more importantly tough. Therefore, my training partner and I subject ourselves to unusual circumstances on purpose often just to see if we can take it. Well, this one may have been one step over the line. The bad part about the wind was that we needed to go north for 4 hours before our turn which would take us to the north east. We drafted off each other for the first two hours in a quickened pace trying to raise our core temps. The cold was penetrating our upper body which is never good, and rare. At one point while riding in the second position I noticed my partner swerving about the road. I was inclined to ask if he was o.k. his response highlighted the moment, "I can't see my eyes are freezing shut."His candor was reinforcing, comforting, and noteworthy. I remember thinking at the time that Mallory would be proud…

I am currently spending every day thinking about nothing else but the upcoming Trans Iowa. Sunday’s DBD session allowed my training partner and I to experience the joys of THE ROAD in a manner that was both unique and revolutionary for I think it was probably the coldest I have ever been on a bicycle, which is something considering... In any event, I was able to watch my training partner’s head become progressively encased in an icy crust to the extent of eventually resembling the inside of a malfunctioning old 1950s style freezer. This gradual process of the ice encasement of my training partner’s head, for some strange reason brought great joy to me. About two hours into the ride, my chamois for some indiscernible reason was frozen solid which afforded me the sensation of straddling a frozen waterfall while in the nude, which had the odd effect of moistening my eyes. The dampness caused my eyes to freeze up. My cadence on the pedals and line thus became irregular, so I pulled over to assess the problem. My training partner mocked me for crying frozen tears, but I assured him that they were not tears of sadness nor torment. I then reminded him that tearing up as a response to despair is categorically banned in the DBD manual, but I did concede that I was perhaps experiencing tears of joy. I used the warmth from my hand to melt the ice that trapped my eyes and continued on, after mocking my training partner’s ice-encased head, of which had developed into a kind of bulky white head armor reminiscent of those worn by the Knights of King Arthur’s Round-table, but I don’t think he heard me because of significant ice-crusting located near his ear areas. Since my whole crotch area, the whole undercarriage, so to speak, was essentially frozen solid, I found striding to be difficult and yet from time to time we were forced to walk as a remedy or at least a momentary respite for our frozen feet. When I commented to my training partner on the dichotomy of the situation, he responded with an inaudible echo and I remember thinking that was really funny…I had a deadline to follow, I don’t remember why, but I needed to be back in eight and one-half hours…So, we eventually parted ways as my training partner felt that an eight hour effort would not constitute a DBD work-out…He berated me with something like “just eight hours!!! No way...You’ll never finish the TI at that rate. Mallory should have you shackled and whipped like a common roadie!” I remember loathing his huge frosty white ice-encased head as it went bobbing into the distance for he left me on The ROAD alone…a salty incomprehensible fluid filled my eyes, at first I was perplexed and then I remembered that salts would help with my leg cramps, so that was a good thing…I rode home feeling nothing…it was a great ride!...

They both went on like that for hours. It was sad. It is also important to note at this juncture that the two plaintiffs have obviously come to revere George Mallory, who even in death, has the where-with-all to fill these men with notions of delusionary grandeur. Mallory preaches a form of Intellectual-Reductionism as a kind of simplified, or even instinctual, manifestation of cognition. Mallory encourages his devotees to seek out absurd events such as your Trans-Iowa in an effort to afford his loyal cadre the opportunity to test their meddle even within the “confines of a modern soft mambe pambe sort of world." Mallory, schooled in the art of legal subtleties, knows full well that he is essentially beyond the reach of the law due to his official listing as “deceased.” He uses this legal shield to perpetrate his will upon those of whom are in their twilight years of athleticism and are yet reluctant to secede their ambitions to the golf course.

There is no doubt that if we could sue Mallory we would, but we cannot. Yet, we can sue you…But we are willing to deal with you. An out-of-court settlement is not an unreasonable outcome. I look forward to hearing for you. Do the right thing and contact me, before our court date.


C. U. Encourt, Esquire