May 21, 2005

cool video

i used to see this guy from time to time when i was a regular at hunter mountain. its humbling to see a parapelegic who's a better skier than you are.. and he really is.

very impressive.

Click here to see the video.

May 19, 2005

revenge of the sith report

3:00am, here's my report. a few observations about the new star wars movie. no spoilers, except ones we already knew about.

- Most importantly, It didn't suck
- The only tedious part of the movie was the dialogue between anakin and padame
- the CGI sequences were really impressive
- anakin's conversion to darth vader was believable and convincing, his behavior as darth vader wasn't as believable
- darth vader is one evil son of a bitch
- Padame's death at the end of the movie moistened the eyes of 500 hardcore male star wars fans, who quickly attempted to squelch them.
- two people (audience members) dressed up as darth vader, one as obewan. they had light-saber fights before the show started, and everyone in the theatre was into it. they were chanting "O-BE-WAN! O-BE-WAN!" I was trying to be cool, reading my backpacker magazine.
- i was, indeed, the only person in there with a backpacker magazine
- i was one of the only people who showed up alone. I was also one of the only people who wore a wedding ring.
- when 7 screenings of star wars gets out at the same time, the mens room line backs up pretty bad right when the movies end. interestingly, there was no line for the ladies room.
- like episode 2, yoda kicks some ass in this movie
- virtually no dialogue with jar-jar (sadly, jar-jar doesn't die)

- i appreciated the lead-ins to episode 4
.obe wan handing baby luke to his uncle (where he stayed to 'watch over the child)
.said uncle (and wife) looking at the two suns set in exactly the same way luke did in a famous scene in episode 4
.yoda teaching obe wan to communicate with dead jedis before he went into exile
.a few scenes in the exact same hallway where you first see darth vader in episode 4
.the emporer's transformation from an old man to a really ugly wrinkley old man
.darth vader getting the helmet and black costume, and the revelation of why he wears the helmet and black costume
.first appearance of chewbacca and his wookie friends

there's probably a lot more, but i'm getting too tired to remember.

definitely best of the 3 in the modern series.. better than jedi, not better than hope or empire. so out of the six, it's the 3rd best.

May 15, 2005

greets to jim breuer

listen here

hey we're all feeling really good.
and this is what you should do when you're hanging out with friends.
the wife's not home..
someone's watching the kids right now..
and this is called being productive.
you get to talk - talk about whatever you want in life!
you can talk about the politics,
why i hate this one i like that,
i stand on this i stand on that,
i don't get paid enough,
i don't do this,
i need to see a therapist,
i need to go here,
why do all of that?
you know what they used to call therapists in the old days?
people that love you.
people that you love,
no matter how disfunctional they are in life.
my family's fucked up - no shut up pete - i'm being serious.
i've had people in jail.
i've lost people to fucking death.
why do we gotta take life so fucking seriously?
every day!
back off man!
because today, we're hanging out.
and i hope you brought the goods.
and i hope you aren't a faggot and you get offended everytime you fuckin..
"did you just say that?"
yes we did!
because that's what you do when you're with loved ones - friends and family.
you say things that may be a little offensive.
that's called talking.
getting to know people.
and you may cross the border but you know what?
we'll acknowledge it, maybe we'll apologize.
we don't want to hurt anyone,
we're just here to get by this life like you faggot.
so relax.
lets just hang out,
and have a good time today
i hope you're with people that are cool.

May 14, 2005

friday ski report..

the snow was awesome at 11:00am..
the weather was beautiful, too..

my boots hurt again today for some reason.. like severe pain again and I don't know why - I was only able to ski one run.. boot pain sucks.

may 13th, 2005: 500 miles of driving roundtrip - 8 hours - 1 ski run.
hell yeah it was worth it.

(if you don't understand why, you never will)

anyway, its time to hang up the skis and get psyched for summer.. going to ride that new bicycle until my calf heals, then run and ride the bike until i've got a 36" waist. I already bought a pair of pants in 36"..

"but steve, 36" is too small for you!"

back in 1999, I went on a fitness program and the results were amazing. I was down to a 42" waist and didn't look half bad.. but here's the deal - even at 42" I was still over 300 lbs. I should probably be below 250lbs.. hence the 36" pants I own.. and as a way to motivate myself I have said that I won't drink any beer (or other alchohol) until I'm down to a 36.

So in the fall when I'm in better shape, I'm going to go to the pro shoe-fitter that alex goes to and where I bought my running shoes from (forget the store I bought the boots from - I totally got a vibe that he doesn't care). This guy is good. Really good. Hopefully he'll be able to stretch out the boot a little so that the pain stops - and make me a footbed with arch support (where the pain is). This guy is the best, he's extremely experienced (made over 30,000 footbeds) but more importantly he actually gives a shit about his customers - and will jump through hoops for them.

he also holds the world record for the fastest crossing of the united states by foot.
his web site is

May 13, 2005

cue the space odyssey theme song..

the bicycle has been assembled..

rode it when i got home. i forgot how hard hills are, even small ones in the lowest gear.

skied today.. i'll write about that later.

May 12, 2005

yet another bike update

picked up the unasembled bike today and brought it to a different shop who'll have it done by tomorrow.

when picking it up, the guy told me that i'm doing myself a terrible disservice. then he dropped some more jargon to tell me why, something about torquing the gears to align the chain properly. i told him that i can't wait two weeks to get the bike, so i took it..

so the guy who'll do it by tomorrow said that he has no clue what the first one was talking about, but the chains are always aligned properly... he has been a bike tech for 30 years and thinks the first guy was full of shit. all things being equal, I believed him, especially since the first guy basically said that all the other bike shops in the area were incompetent.

here's the confusing part: the first guy has no reason to lie. he's an hourly employee at a store where bikes aren't even the emphasis. he's backed up and probably would appreciate having the backlog lightened a bit. he has nothing to gain by assembling the bike, and nothing to lose by not assembling it.

as a sidenote, since the new place closes at 6pm, i'm going to have my wife drop off rufus at the daycare in the morning so i can ski in the vermont in the morning. then I will return in the afternoon in time to pick up rufus and go pick up the bike. that's what's up with the change in plans.

it'll be my last ski day of the season, and it'll also be the day i get my bike.


May 11, 2005

pointless entry

arghhh... but i'm getting over it.
i'm not as devastated as i was yesterday - even though on monday i was sure i'd have the bike today at the latest (and was hoping to god they'd finish early)

so where am i now? a day closer to who knows when. my calf still hurts, so running is out - hiking would be ok but it's still too early since my last run to risk it (pounding on the downhills would be a biatch)

so today i didn't exercise and instead cooked a potroast - and the portion i ate was delicious. alex is at a party in the city coming home until about 9pm tonight, so i'm by myself here this evening, until i get the call to pick her up in harrison, 40 minutes away. the baby is sleeping at the moment, i just finished recording my brother's radio show, and now i'm sitting here wishing i could be riding the bike right now. so instead, i posted a blog entry. glad to share it with you.

friday i'm going skiing, and it'll likely be my last day this season. i need to put in a good long roadtrip.. maybe to the upper midwest to pick up highpoints. right now i'm thinking of going from buffalo through ontario to sault ste marie, and hitting the highpoints of MI (which is on the UP), WI, then up to MN (which is on the northeast fringes of the state). Then, depending on the time, I'll go even further west and tack off ND, SD, NE and maybe Kansas. Then I want come back, doing IA, IL, IN, and OH. So what is that? 10 highpoints in one trip? that wouldn't be bad.. it would only leave 10 states east of the rockies that I'd still need - Northern New England, plus Alabama which I'll pick up next time I'm in Atlanta, Virginia which is just a matter of a weekend roadtrip, and then Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, and Missouri. And of course, all of the western states.. the big ones that can't be ticked off so easily..

you see? I was going to keep writing, but it just occurred to me I haven't thought about that damn bike in the last ten minutes while writing that paragraph and planning!

highpointing is good for your sanity. rizzo, where are you?! lets go!

May 10, 2005

bike update

so the bike came in last week, and boy i've been going nuts waiting for it. took a couple of weeks for them to deliver it from california (the large frame had to be special ordered) and i was hoping the bike techs would have it assembled within 24 hours - i'm anxious to be riding this thing..

turns out that was wishful thinking..

so the bike arrived on thursday and the guy in the shop said i'd get tuesday or wednesday of this week. today i actually talked to one of the techs and he told me a different story.. they're so backed up that it might be weeks before they can even get to it.


it may be an emotional overreaction, but i'm just devastated over this news..
absolutely devastated..

i wish i knew how to assemble a bike.

the worst part - I've somehow injured my left calf. i pulled it or something. it really hurts after a couple of miles of running - so much so that i need a week to recover before i can run again. feels like its an impact thing - so i need to avoid running for a few weeks to let it heal. i was hoping to ride the bike for that time to keep the fitness momentum going.. now i don't know what to do.

May 8, 2005

Happy Birthday Billy Joel

and happy mothers day too!

before I get into the meat of my post, I wanted to put in a quick plug for my brother's message board. i just set it up yesterday, and as of right now, there are just two users: me and him. though he'll talk about anything at all, his radio show is a sports show, so I imagine the main topics will be sports. you can post some of the controversial issues there for a fresh opinion. the URL is

actually, that was the meat of my post. carry on..

May 6, 2005

They can't assemble it quickly..

I was hoping to be riding my new bicycle today, but that's not happening. Went down to the store yesterday to get the pedals (ended up getting a clipless/platform combination) and they guy told me middle of next week. It's their busy season, and my thought that they would be able to do it quickly was mere wishful thinking.

Also got a lock, a pump that attaches to the frame, and a patch kit. These three items are sitting on my desk, a constant reminder that my bike has arrived and it sitting in pieces waiting for someone to get to it.

I should have been a bike assembly mechanic.. then I wouldn't have to wait. (:

May 4, 2005

Bike arrives tomorrow, eager to get started..

Took a couple of weeks, but tomorrow, a package will arrive at my office from Marin Bikes, and, after assembly, I will be the proud father of a new (operational) bicycle.

needless to say, I'm psyched!

Anyway, since the bike doesn't come with pedals, I've had to make a decision as to whether to go clipless or platform (Based on spin class experience, I hate the pedal webbing "cages" you sometimes see.) When doing some web searches to get people's opinion, its clear that clipless pedals (where you wear special shoes with a cleat that clips into the pedal) are the way to go, especially on a road bike. The difference in efficiency is supposed to be amazing, because instead of just pushing down on a pedal, you can transfer power to the bike in a circle - adding about 25%, as it turns out, to your efficiency. "Hills that seemed like monsters before are just bumps now." "Once you go clipless, you never go back." "Even recreational riders should consider clipless."

As I saw it, the only problem with clipless pedals was the price obviously (not only are clipless pedals more expensive, but you also need special shoes), and more importantly, that you can't ride with clipless pedals with plain street shoes. I wanted the most efficient ride possible, but I also wanted to be able to ride a mile to the store without changing my shoes. After doing a little research, I found that there are some pedals that are both clipless and platform - They use both sides of the pedals to accomodate everyone. SO with that concern taken care of, I think that I am going to with a clipless pedal.

Just one day more.. hopefully they can assemble it quickly. (: