Dogbite Update

Today I spoke with the dog owner’s insurance company. It seems (knock on wood) that they realize that I’m being completely reasonable are going to do likewise. Just after getting off the phone with them, I get a call from the local court’s ‘Restitution Coordinator’. She called to see how I was and what sort of expenses I’ve incurred. I told her of my conversation with the insurance folks and that I don’t anticipate any major expenses, but one never knows. So, she’s going to pass this on to the judge (the dog’s owner has to appear in court tomorrow). She said she’d let know the outcome of the hearing and said that if I have any expenses that the insurance company won’t cover to let them know and they’ll assist me in recouping.

The bite seems to look a little worse, but is feeling marginally better.

I had a nice ride today, no excitement. Well, an asshole in an SUV yelled some sort of Doppler-shifted gibberish at me. All I made out was “the road”. Then, as I was stopped in left turn lane at the light near my house a man in a pick up (to my right) said to me, “You made good time”. Apparently we’d both been caught at a light a few blocks away together and he was impressed I’d caught him again.

Not a bad day at all. Seems like the system is going to work as it should, and the assholes were canceled out by the friendly folks.

Dogbite, on my leg – Not right, supposed to beg

Went out for my first ‘real’ ride of the season today. You can probably guess what happened on my way back into town. Black chow comes charging down his driveway (where the owner was impotently standing by), with no wasted movement he makes straight for me and chomps down on my ankle. The owners were cool (though not nearly apologetic enough for my taste) and are saying they’ll cover my expenses. Wasted a lot of my evening talking to them, at the Urgent Care, and at Wal-Mart picking up the de rigueur antibiotics. Tomorrow I have to call animal control folks back and talk to them. Hopefully they will report back that the dog is, in fact, up on all of his shots. The owners said he was, but c’mon, what the hell else are they gonna say?

Got a couple of nasty punctures/gashes in the back of my calf, one with a chunk ripped out! First time I’ve been bitten, had to make it a good one, I guess.

And now, I think I’ll go listen to the Dead Kennedys’ song from which I purloined this post’s title.

More on the Wright Brothers’ Bicycle Shop

I just got the following message from the Ohio Bike mailing list:

Amanda Wright Lane, great grand niece of Orville Wright, called me in November seeking the support of the Ohio cycling community to save the building at 1005 West Third Street in Dayton. The young Orville and Wilbur Wright in 1892 rented the first story of this building as their first bicycle shop.

Of the Wright brothers’ five bicycle shops, only this one and the restored fourth shop, now open to the public by the National Park Service as part of the Dayton Aviation Heritage National Park, remains in Ohio. Henry Ford moved their fifth bicycle shop to Greenfield Village, Michigan, and the buildings housing their second and third shops have been torn down.

Partnering with Wright Dunbar, Inc. and other organizations, we have submitted a proposal to attract the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame to this building. Ten other communities have submitted proposals.

If the Hall does not accept our proposal, we may create a bicycle co-op in the building, renting bicycles to those who participate in the historical Ride with the Ranger rides starting at the Wright Dunbar Interpretive Center. We could also offer League cycling training, and open a restaurant in the building. The building may be a future home of offices for the Dayton Cycling Club and Ohio Bicycle Federation. Jim Sheehan has been successful with the Ohio City Bicycle Co-op in Cleveland.

Donations to save the building may be sent to Wright Dunbar, Inc., 1105 W. Third St., Dayton OH 45402 by May 1, 2009. Wright Dunbar is a non-profit created to save the buildings of the Wright-Dunbar Historic Area where Orville and Wilbur Wright and Dayton poet Paul Lawrence
Dunbar lived.

Chuck Smith
Chair, Ohio Bicycle Fed

I hope they can find a way to preserve this amazing piece of history. I’ll be making a donation.

U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame coming to Dayton?

From a Dayton Daily News article:

Dayton is one of 11 communities under consideration to be the new home of the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame.

Dayton certainly has the cycling provenance, being the home to the Wright brothers (who were bicycle mechanics, let us not forget) and the original home of Huffy bicycles. However the article goes on to say:

the organization is looking for at least 15,000 square feet of climate-controlled and secure space in a community that can provide support, draw in visitors and is bicycle friendly.

This could be a sticking point. I’m not sure about Dayton’s ability to draw visitors and Dayton is far from “bicycle friendly” especially compared to Madison, Wisconsin and Davis, California (which are also among the 11 communities being considered). I’d also wager that the rate of violent crime is lower in those two cities as well (note: I checked, it is; much).

Having said that, it would be quite a coup for the area if they do land the USBHOF and I would certainly visit, were it to come to Dayton. Ohio is the home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (don’t even get me started) and the Pro Football Hall of Fame, so who knows?

I was remiss…

…in mentioning the Tour of California and not saying:
“John Jacob Levi Leipheimer Schmidt”.
I never get tired of that.
Go Levi! Go!

Postscript: Apparently Levi’s website (linked above) hasn’t been updated since November 2008. Hell the first link on the “Links” page is to “Levi’s new team, Discovery Channel”. Also, e-mails to the webmaster bounce, so don’t bother. You would think Levi could afford to keep that shit up to date, but I guess the economy’s bad for everyone.

Lance’s TT Bike

Hard to unload a famous, one-of-a-kind, stolen bike that looks like this, apparently:




According to his Twitter, Lance will be riding the bike that was stolen Sunday and then recovered yesterday in tomorrow’s Tour of California TT. I’m sure the mechanics (and possibly Lance himself) went over it with a fine toothed comb, but still… somehow it just makes me uneasy.

When it Rains, it Pours (Again)

You may recall me doing some bitching the last time my basement flooded. Well, with the practically non-stop thunderstorms this week, it happened again.

Anyway… I headed out for a ride this evening and kept coming across roads that were closed due to flooding. I took a chance that I could get through on Valley Road (which was “closed”), after all, it hasn’t been raining today. I climb the hill by the airport, speed down the other side and there, up ahead, is the water. As I draw closer I see that there’s a narrow strip down the other side of the road that’s above the water and only a bit wet in places. Onward! I cross 35 and head to Hilltop Road, which also has signs up that it’s closed (flooded). Emboldened by my previous success, I press on. I come to one area which was obviously underwater, but is now completely dry, so my decision is looking better. Then I come to another Road Closed sign. “Uh-oh, this doesn’t bode well.” Then I see that the entire low-lying part of the road which is adjacent to the river is very much underwater.

Dejected, I turn around to seek another way home.

Here’s the thing that ties the two flooded basement incidents together. The last time it happened I had lost my key, but had a spare hidden away. Today I realized early in my ride that I had forgotten my key, which was hanging right where it belongs, right next to the spare, which I hadn’t bothered to return to where it belongs.

I ended up calling a locksmith, who couldn’t pick the lock and had to drill it out. A rather costly lesson for me. Between the service call, and the new lock (re-keyed to match the deadbolt); not returning my ’emergency key’ to its hiding place cost me $96.30.

Another Perfect Day for a Ride

While the theme for yesterday’s ride might have been “bugs”, today it was wildlife. Two deer (in different spots), several bunnies, all of the birds I would expect to see, plus a Blue Jay. I don’t know why, but Blue Jays and Mockingbirds are scarce in this immediate area. A twenty minute ride to the south and you will find both in abundance, but here you rarely see either.

Anyway, I made my mind up before leaving that today I was doing the ride I intended to do yesterday. There would be no bug-gauntlet/shortcut today, no sir!

I felt surprizingly strong climbing Hilltop Road, and of course I enjoyed the run back down the hill on Fairground. Reaching the rolling hills on Fairground… Bonk! Just like yesterday, I found myself totally spent, riding back home at a crawl.

The legs are strong, but the motor still needs some work.
All in good time, all in good time.
It’s really quite sad, here it is nearly June and I’m in ‘February shape’.

Bugs!

Today was as close to a perfect day for a ride as you can ask for, so naturally, I went for a ride. My original “plan” was to return home by way of Hilltop Road to Fairground Road. Sadly, as I neared the point where I would turn toward Hilltop Road, my legs felt like lead and I just couldn’t talk myself into climbing the hill for which the road is named, so I decided to hop on the bike path, bypass the hill(s), and pick up Fairground Road at the Fairgrounds.

It turns out, this was a bad idea. I ride on bike paths infrequently enough that I sometimes forget the various reasons I eschew them. The reason I don’t ever ride this particular section of path during the Spring or Summer, particularly in the evening, is bugs. Vast horrible clouds of tiny little bugs. Bugs in my eyes, bugs in my ears, bugs up my nose, bugs down my throat, bugs in my hair, bugs every-fucking-where. It was like a Goddamned mile-long bug rain storm, the difference being; actual rain doesn’t make me curse like an enraged Tourette’s patient.

Thankfully, I was soon off the bike path and out of the bugs. The horror of the bugs would have been quickly forgotten were it not for the fact that they still coated me like some sort of insect breading. Mmm… insect encrusted, deep-fried cyclist!

I made it home with no further drama. The cat enjoyed playing with some of my insect stowaways while I made haste in washing the remainder off of me and attempting to blow some of the less fortunate ones out of my nasal passages.

I won’t make that mistake again any time soon (famous last words).