An .85 Magnum Opus

The Opus Legato and I on the way back to El Rancho Pendejo from the bosque.

The Opus Legato and Your Humble Narrator on the way back to El Rancho Pendejo from the bosque.

That was a long three weeks. Know how I can tell? Because I just absentmindedly hand-coded the italics for “That,” the way we have to while posting at Live Update Guy during the grand tours, the first of which finally skidded to a halt on Sunday.

Don’t gotta do that shit here, yo. Got buttons for that italics shit here.

Anyway, with the Giro d’Italia finally in the can, no deadlines of any sort barking at me like a double Hound of the Baskervilles, and Herself finally (!) done with road-tripping for a while, I enjoyed a nice quiet morning for a change, one in which I didn’t have to be funny and/or focused before breakfast. It’s a far cry from ditch-digging, but some days it’s definitely harder than it looks.

Around 10 I got out for a spin on the Opus Legato, one of three review bikes on deck for Adventure Cyclist. It started out as a fairly standard out-and-back but at some point mutated into a “let’s see where this road goes” kind of ride. I found a scenic new alternative to 4th Street (Guadalupe Trail) when heading down Tramway with the bosque in mind, and on the way home checked out a couple of bike routes that were new to me.

By this time it was noonish and in the mid-80s, which added a degree of difficulty to the climb back up to El Rancho Pendejo. And then I remembered we have air conditioning. So, yeah, bonus. Now I seem to be hungry for some reason, so I’m gonna whip up a mess of Rick Bayless’s tacos de chorizo con salsa de aguacate.

Seems the recipe is no longer on his website, but there are plenty of others. Pick one and use it to take the taste of a Lindsey Graham presidential campaign out of your mouth.

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14 Responses to “An .85 Magnum Opus”

  1. Pat O'Brien Says:

    Glad you got to decompress a little.
    Just had to mention the Lindsey Graham bid, didja? It’s like watching “It’s Pat” bits from Saturday Night Live. Or even worse was the Senate’s pissing contest yesterday afternoon with the “Frog”, the “Rug”, and “Get Off My Lawn” seeing who can get it highest on the tree. But, I am glad Paul stopped Section 215 if only for a few days.
    Got my Adventure Cycling magazine today. Nice picture of you and Khal and Meena.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      The GOP clown car is looking more and more like an 18-wheeler full of bagged hammers, no? But yeah, props to Paul the Younger for making bad noise on a proper topic for a change, even if it was more about his presidential campaign than our freedom.

      Haven’t gotten my mag yet, and probably won’t look at it when it arrives. I’m striving mightily this week to ignore any cycling not being done by me.

    • khal spencer Says:

      Have not gotten my mag yet either. Hopefully, the folks on Adventure Cycling will not see those pictures of us and cancel their subscriptions…

  2. khal spencer Says:

    Looking at the Legato 1.0 specs, I still find it disheartening that a bike marketed as a fully loaded cross country touring bike is shipped with a 1:1 low gear ratio. First thing I would suggest for anyone actually thinking of loading that baby down for a haul across the Rockies or Adirondacks would be to swap out the 30t granny for a 24, and shitcan the 12-30 for a 12-34.

    Hauling a bike full of cross country self supporting gear, including fuel canisters, is not something done lightly. So where is John Schubert these days, and why did he not have a cow over that gearing? Those gears are fine for everyday commuting or a weekend jaunt, but pity the poor bastard who has front and rear panniers fully loaded and is in hour 8 of the 9th day across country, into a headwind, on a 7% grade. Just shoot me….

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      John Schubert is off doing other things, more’s the pity. We need his voice out there in the wildnerness, crying along with the rest of us.

      Alas, touring may be the littlest pig at cycling’s trough. These days a product manager who wants to provide a real touring drivetrain has quite the maze to navigate. Dan D’Ambrosio wrote about the issue for Adventure Cyclist.

      Frankly, the serious tourist would be best served by buying a frameset and then equipping it with the sort of components best suited to the type of travel s/he plans. It’s not unlike the bad old days of cyclocross racing, when complete bikes were just not to be had.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        The products offered by SOMA Fabrications and Salsa, along with advice from my LBS, made building a bike from a frame set easier for me. It’s a wonder to me why more people don’t own a touring bike. It is maybe one of the most versatile road bikes there are. If I could only have one bike, it would be my Saga.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        Right you are, Pat. As a bare-bones bike, the Saga is fun to ride, especially if you keep a lightweight set of wheels handy. Add the 36-spoke, box-section touring jobbers, racks, bags, fenders, and lights, and hey presto! Instant recreational vehicle for those extended road trips.

      • khal spencer Says:

        I bought that Long Haul Trucker frame/fork and built it up out of parts scavenged off our old Trek tandem along with some new goodies. So it lives with a set of 9 speed Shimano barcons, Dia Compe 987 V brake levers and XT derailleur off the Trek, a 26-36-48 Sugino triple I bought from Sheldon Brown, and 11-34 cassette in the back. I have two sets of wheels. One built on Sun CR18 rims currently shod with tank-like Vittoria Randonneur Cross tires. Got a spare set of light Bontrager wheels from an old Trek hardtail shod with Richey 26×1.5 Tom Slicks for when I want to go faster.

        It was fun to build and fun to ride, even if my only “touring” so far has been to the food co-op and up the ski hill after work on my commute home. I keep thinking I will have time for a short tour where I can put the Low Riders on. Maybe.

  3. Libby Says:

    Glad to see things are back to normal at the ranch and you got a ride in. You have a few weeks to get your sleep schedule in order before it is disrupted again!
    For the Giro I bounced between BEinSport and RAI. I like the bonus of 2 motos with Lelli and DeLuca on the spot. Cippollini made multiple appearances on the Processo, bookending the Giro. The Processo can be frustrating, too, with so many guests not called on to speak! “Chichu” Uran is always a hit on that show. He and the host have enormous chemistry together. Uran showed off his talisman – a special cactus plant that had bloomed pink in the final days of the Giro to mirror his better health and form.

  4. bromasi Says:

    “let’s see where this road goes”,best kind, getting lost is better.

  5. Larry T. Says:

    Welcome back! Can’t help but wonder how much loot “Huckleberry Butchmeup” is paying out Dennis Hastert-style to keep his secrets secret? It’s gotta be really crowded in the Republican clown car these days! Meanwhile the Giro d’Italia is always the height of the pro cycling season, now it’s time to get to work on CycleItalia tours for the next two months….riding our bikes instead of watching others ride theirs.
    Khal-the marketing mavens don’t bother putting real touring gears on these things for the same reason people buy 4WD “crossover” automobiles. It’s the old “not that you would, but you COULD” idea…but could is really won’t….ever.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      I was going to ask when touring season started up for you two, Larry. I’m trying to cobble together a short bike overnight, but it’s amazing how little free time there is for a guy with three part-time jobs.

      • Larry T. Says:

        We cut our season down to just the two months due to the wife’s obligations with the Rome Prize. I’ve pretty much had my fill of Rome, at least cycling-wise so I’m ready to get away to places with less people and more peaceful roads, starting at the end of this week.

      • khal spencer Says:

        Patrick, you could always ride over the Jemez from the Duke City to BombTown and then back the next day. Since you are used to a place overrun with dogs and cats, I think you would be comfortable at the Downstairs Spare Room Estate, complete with covered bicycle parking.

        Well, comfortable with the dogs and cats, anyway. The two people who live there can be hard to tolerate…

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