An 808 way of life

Links of Chain

Tattoos by the numbers.

This is my 1,000th post on the PhotoMotoBlog.

More than 574,480 unique visitors have been to this site since its inception.

The weekly average the past four months has been in excess of 14,000 unique visitor per week.

My busiest day was February 17th, 2010 with 2,359 unique visitors.

Folks logging on my site originate from 37 different countries and the Hawaiian Islands.

Google is used to translate my site into 12 different languages.

I’ve logged more than 400 hours creating the site.

There are 2,535 images contained in this weblog.

Interestingly, it uses just a ½ MB of space.

The masthead has changed more than 100 times.

The posting rules have been broken once; that person didn’t break the rules again.

My blog site ‘encouraged’ management to create a ‘blog posting policy’ within my company.

This site has spun off into 22 other weblogs that I’ve created; the unique visitor totals for all sites is greater than 4,000,000.

I’ve been repeatedly asked to monetize several of my sites (no ads please).

The best part is that I really don’t care what anyone thinks about the content, the images nor the layout.

Somehow I’ve managed to connect with people whom I don’t know … for those folks …  mahalo nui loa!

Thank-you for logging onto my site.

Aloha


Why I ride: Motor-pacing is part of the regimen.

If you’re lucky enough to have access to a scooter then you appreciate the added-value a scooter brings to the training plan. Having a scooter isn’t enough – you’ve got to have an able-bodied driver too.

And not just a driver, you need a person who “gets it.” When you find someone, you’re darn lucky. Mine happens to be the BGE.

The premise behind motor-pacing is simple: increased speeds for longer periods of time. It simulates racing and time trialing all in one work session. Our work session yesterday was 75 miles – that included covering the Foothills Parkway and assorted hills coming back along Six Mile Road. At just under 3.5 hours, it was as close to race-pace as I could stomach. The very fact that so much ground is covered in a short amount of time feels good. It opens the day up for other activities.

Get a scooter. Find a driver. Scoot on.


Why I ride: It’s Wednesday.

The week is wearing on me – a lot. Our Tuesday ride was a little “faster” than anticipated so today’s ride was squeaky slow. All one.point.five hours of the ride. I’m looking forward to Thursday – hopefully I’ll feel a little better. Today’s photo speaks to the exertion we love and that we fear: being too tired and over training. I’m hopeful that tomorrow will be better all around.


Burrrr. Time Trail kick-off was frosty.

I’ve just defrosted from Saturday’s Time Trail held in Rutledge, Tennessee (it’s 7:47PM on Sunday!).

Rutledge is considered part of the Morristown MSA and is sparsely populated. Founded in 1798, this town was once a real city that had potential — primarily because its physical proximity to Federal Row (now known as US-11). This was the key road connecting New Orleans and Virginia. Enough of the history lesson – at least you know where I was day tripping.

icy-front-fork-and-down-tube.jpg

(NOTE: The ice on the frame and down tube.)

Ok then. The Time Trail, dubbed the Spring Forward TT was the official first race within the TBRA points series. I might add that NOTHING was spring-like at this TT. NOTHING. Let me paint the picture:

snow-falling.jpg

Temp – 28 degree and wind chill at 17; on the bike the temp was even colder

Snow blowin’ – yes, it was really snowing not just dusty, but real snow

Wet – yes, even more wet because the roads haven’t been that cold over the last few weeks. Thus it was slushy.

Windy – double yes. The wind was howlin and it made grown men want the warmth of the fire place. I couldn’t use a disc wheel because I was afraid of being blown off the damn road!

frost-ice-on-feet.jpg
(NOTE the ice on my feet. Much of it had fallen off at this point.)

A real TT – hell yes. It was a 40K TT. No namby-pamby 5K crappy-crap. It was 24.8 miles of frosty hell.

Location – other than it being in Rutledge, it was held on US-11 — with semi’s, cars and dogs running 55mph just inches away.

I was late getting away from the house and arrived with just enough time to change clothes, ready my bike and get on it. I didn’t get warmed up prior to the event. This was “the” day when “warming” up meant a “ready” body and “ready legs.” I was none of those things. When I got to the start line I had 12 minutes to spin around. All I could do was mentally complain about how f-ing cold it was – and how my body really needed to warm up. BLAH.

The route out (20K to the turn) was into the wind. With hills. With slush. With snow. It sucked. At 15K my body came alive (finally) and I started to gain some momentum. The minute man behind me caught me at the turn. Shawn Hurt (former Tennessee’s State Champion/Masters – and very good in a TT). Mentally it was crippling but at least it gave me someone to chase. I was the first one to go off in the Masters 40+ and thus no “rabbit” to chase. This is tough on a bunch of levels. Oh well.

frozen-cassette.jpg

When I cranked it up the last hill my legs clearly didn’t like me very much but I didn’t care. I wanted to sprint and then drive hard across the line; there wasn’t much sprinting nor driving hard across the line. At 66:12 I wasn’t too proud. Once I returned to the car my legs hurt so bad that I yelled out loud – and I’m still in some pain today. The photos attest to the frosty-ness of what I experienced. Heck, the slush built up on the number 11 cog, number 12 cog and neither of those worked!

post.jpg
(NOTE the ice build-up — this photo taken “after” I had removed most of it.)

I made a rookie mistake of not warming up properly. And I paid the price. I finished 3rd in Masters 40+ and picked up some TBRA points. I’m not happy about it. But then again, the time leaped forward today and we have a semi-warm week ahead of us.

placing.jpg

Later.


Waikiki hula. Oahu nights. Yes, it’s good. All good.

hawaii.jpg

Its hard to imagine that Waikiki was a hot spot for royal Hawaiians … a place for them to hang out in … let’s say in the 1800’s. The fact is, the area was well known for its swampiness and marshlands. Can you say hot and moist?

The first recorded history of Waikiki involved the chief of Oahu named Kalanikupule. In 1790 he hijacked a ship with the intent of attacking Kamehameha I. The famous battle of Nuuanu Pali began and Kalanikupule was defeated. Because the ship was hijacked at Diamond Head, the area became an important part of Waikiki history. As time passed, rulers brought many guests to Waikiki and some parts were known as private beaches.

In 1901 the famous hotel Moana (pronounced “moe-anna”) was constructed and instantly became a sore spot for natives. The locals began to see their land change, and with time, Waikiki was transformed from a swampland to a place of beauty. While the area had been called unsanitary and dangerous due to the mosquitoes (a plenty), the landing strip for them wasn’t added in last year (I just made that up). Actually the mosquitoes were large enough to require a landing strip!

hawaii_hula_1908.jpg

It was ruled that the swamp be replaced with a canal in order to drain it completely. The Ala Wai canal was constructed in 1921 that lead to a number of  hotels being built. With such, wealthy guests started flocking to the island. Today, Waikiki is the exclusive hot spot for Oahu. Beautiful. Full of bodies. Lots of beach front and yes, it’s a lovely place.

waikiki-beach-hawaii-1950s-travel-poster.jpg

Once Hawaii became a state of the union, hotels and resorts popped up like someone wanted to make money. The hotels and businesses clustered on the waterfront offered many cultural activities and the entertainment venues were endless. And this holds true today.

When you visit Oahu, please know that you’ll find shopping options similar to any top 10 city on the US mainland. If I remember correctly, there are two Tiffany stores on the same road. Plenty of bling-bling with the tan you bring home. Gotta run – Aloha.


Nothing fishy about this story

fish.jpg

I thought that Christmas was about giving of yourself. Giving gifts that required something more than a credit card or a phone call. But NO – I’m caught up in the crappity-crap-crap of shopping online and gift cards. I’m “making” very few gifts this year. So few that I’m disappointed in my efforts.

This morning I talked with a colleague about “Christmas past.” (That’s interesting in itself.) He said, “Prior to the industrial revolution people took time out to make gifts appropriate to the person. Mom knitted a much needed sweater – or dad might make a sled for his son using his wood working tools – or grandmother made candles for her daughter so she could read at night.” Interesting. The mental connectedness of the creator and the gift were powerful. Gifts had meaning and there wasn’t a “return-me” option. How simple and authentic does that feel!

Earlier this week our office received another (the fifth so far) basket of treats. Chocolate, candy, popcorn, crackers and cheese, nuts of all kinds, gourmet sauces and dips, crappy cookies, Chex mix, coffees, and a lot of other goodies that translate into one word: calories.

There wasn’t a visible card.

I didn’t see any notion of ownership except for the WIVK nut tin. Other than that – we had lots of calories without any clue as to “who” and “why.” The goodies were just there. The “food” was eaten quickly and without regard to nutritional content.

Then at the end of the day I received a card from some friends. In my name, they gave a contribution to FISH Hospitality Pantries. Umm. The “gift” felt genuine and very authentic. In reality it felt like friendship. I was so surprised at the card because it was unexpected.

Little do they know that I’m a stickler about food and eating ALL (I repeat ALL) leftovers. I DO NOT like discarding food. Anyone who knows me and has been in my home on a consistent basis knows that I eat the food I buy. Why? Because so many people in this world are going hungry – right now – as you read this – right now. I suspect I’ll be a member of FISH Hospitality Pantries very soon.

I didn’t miss the season. I found it today in a very simple card.

Merry Christmas April, Robert, Marlee and Monica. Peace be with you.


Falling colors.

fall-colors-disappearing.jpg

Traveling through the Great Smoky Mountain National Park on Tuesday of this week, I stopped and captured a photo – randomly – to make sure I reminded my own eyes where the colors live this time of year. Fewer of them are on the trees – more and more I find them on my car, on the roof and the ground. The trip to and from Gatlinburg was a bit – shall we say interesting and disturbing. En route, an SUV met a large motorcycle head-on just up from Metcalf Bottoms. One person was ER’d away (that means to the emergency room – I’m NOT referring to Queen Elizabeth!) – and I don’t know about the second person. I’m not even sure what happened. The SUV had to be towed – so it was a significant crash. I SLOWED down after that site. And will SLOW down in the Park. Whew.

along-the-way-11-20-07.jpg

The photo of the day was taken near Sugarlands Visitor Center after a great meeting with a great client. (Greatness defined as important and valuable.) Each time I meet with the folks at Jackson Mountain Homes I truly enjoy the discussion and the feedback (even when we need to improve something). Politeness is extended – courtesy to “be yourself” is given – creativity is expected but not demanded. It’s pretty easy to understand why JMH is a successful cabin rental company. If you go to the mountains, stay with Jackson Mountain Homes – they do take your vacation personally. Peace.

another-road-11-20-07.jpg