Sea Notter

We have a sea, but it’s grass. No otters in sight.

I’m not at Sea Otter. Can you tell from the pic?

Being parked at home and mildly bored, I’ve been awarding various neglected bikes some outside time. The DBR Prevail TT, Soma Double Cross, Voodoo Nakisi, and Jones all have been granted furloughs from their hooks this month, while the New Albion Privateer takes a well-deserved break.

Today’s clouds: Not that ominous.

On Thursday I was riding the Nakisi, and not well. The trails are deep sand in some spots and gullied in others, the 700×43 Bruce Gordons were probably pumped up a tad too hard, and my mad skillz — well, the less said about them the better. I was dabbing everywhere.

So yesterday I took the Jones out for a spin on the same trails, and it was mucho bettero, as we say south of the border. Still rolling a wee bit overinflated, but since the tires were big ol’ 29×2.4 muthas at least I wasn’t embarrassing myself. Not much, anyway.

And there’s still quite an audience out there enjoying this fine fall weather instead of putting nose to grindstone for The Man. Hikers, joggers, dog-walkers, and cyclists, most of the latter astride your consarned dadblasted newfangled whizbangs with the 1x drivetrains, boingy bits front and rear, hydraulic discs, dropper posts, and what have you.

Cain’t even fit a proper water bottle in there anywheres. Gotta wear a backpack with a sack in it, suck on a hose like a deadbeat siphoning gas from a workin’ feller’s car.

Speaking of the ol’ suckee-suckee, the WaPo warns that fall might be turning a tad winterish for some of yis. Get the chimbley swept and keep your snow shovel and long johns where you can find ’em in the dark. Don’t want to be caught with your drawers down and your arse in the wind when Thor starts swinging his hammer.

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20 Responses to “Sea Notter”

  1. khal spencer Says:

    Speaking of skills, or lack thereof, I dropped the front wheel of the Stumpjumper into a deep and long erosional crack on a downhill headed out of La Tierra. At speed, of course. It was one of those piss the shorts moments but I managed to come out the other side even though at that point my ass had long ago come detached from the saddle; I was looking at various things I seemed about to hit, in addition to the ground, and was mentally on autopilot as shit was happening too fast to digest.

    One has to pay attention out there. Old bones take longer to heal.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      I was taking it really easy because I hadn’t been on these trails since mid-August. Plus, I’m paranoid, and there are plenty one-lane rockpiles and blind corners full of surprises, nearly all of them bad. Assume the worst and you rarely will be disappointed.

      That said, a mountain biker actually yielded trail to me yesterday. Was it courtesy or self-preservation? We’ll never know. I thanked him anyway.

      You make it home with epidermis intact?

    • Herb from Michigan Says:

      Ooh Khal you were being very undude to quote Walter. Riding like a young Turk was ye? Glad you lived to tell the story. Be careful mi amigo.

  2. si little Says:

    tucked up here in the corner of “mild and seasonable clime. …”

  3. Pat O’Brien Says:

    I knew it was the Jones from the pic. Glad it got off the hook. If I had to steal one bike out of your garage, the Jones would be my pick.

    That was an enjoyable read!

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Thank you, sir. The Jones treated me right yesterday. Where I was slamming into this and dabbing at that aboard the Voodoo, the Jones was giving me space to contemplate. “Good line or bad? Around it or over it? No rush, we’ll just hover here on these fat knobbies, enjoying the 19-inch low end, while you make up your mind.”

    • Herb from Michigan Says:

      POB you’ve been coveting that Jones for awhile. I suggest sending it some flowers and Boeshield and see if you can woo it away from POG. It might very well be tired of his harem system and want a home where it can be treated like a queen.

    • Pat O’Brien Says:

      Herb, my interest in cycling again has all but evaporated. But, if Patrick is interested in a mahogany GS-Mini, quien sabe?

  4. B Lester Says:

    DBR Prevail TT? I know you have a disc wheel with a corn cob cassette, but really dude? I’m 64, and have never tried to pilot a twitchy time trail bike. What’s it like for you?

    • Herb from Michigan Says:

      Yes POG, this deserves more details. I’m sure I could mount your TT bike and hold the position necessary to pilot it down hill for a couple of minutes before parts (my body) started seizing up and snapping in half. Might you be waiting for the Greg LeMond Challenge to start up again?

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      The DBR Prevail TT is actually my old road-racing bike, from 1994 (see pic).

      But I have had two actual time-trial bikes, a Pinarello Prologo funny bike and a Steelman. Not easy to ride, especially for a dude with lower-back issues. The Prologo was particularly scary.

      I still have them both. The Prologo is a frameset hanging on the garage wall, but the Steelman is built and ready to ride. I almost never take it out. It makes me feel like the geezer with the Ferrari ragtop who thinks it’ll help him pick up chicks.

      Steelman time-trial bike

      • Click here for a larger image.

      • Shawn Says:

        One of those DBR frames made on that “other” assembly line? It appeared as such but I wasn’t sure until I saw the “Sa” on the tube sticker. A Sandvik Titanium frame. Although if I scratch my head long enough I suspect I could recall that you’ve informed us about your DBR “Ti” frame in the past. A Nice setup.

        Regarding the Steelman. Did you ever have the slam stemmed (I just had to say that! – ie: stem slammed) on it prior to the days of the Landis Mantis? It would then be like the Prologo – a long way down to the bars.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        Yep, Sandvik made those bad boys for DBR. Road and mountain editions. Team Mad Dog Media-Dogs at Large Velo had a deal with DBR, thanks to rep Carolyn Meyer and Old Town Bike Shop, and didn’t pay full retail, praise Jeebus.

        The last stock bits on the bike are its brake calipers (Shimano 600). It’s had two drivetrains, a couple-three wheelsets, and three forks: the blue alloy original, which I quickly replaced with a Wound-Up; a Ritchey carbon, which put me into a Death Wobble on a descent at the Air Force Academy; and the fork that replaced it, a trusty steel model from Brent Steelman.

        In its present incarnation it goes about 20 pounds, which makes it the lightest bike in The Fleet by quite a margin.

        Regarding the Steelman TT bike, I never could slam that stem. The back and neck couldn’t pay the freight. And mind you, back then I was getting regular massage and chiropractic adjustments. Now? I’d never make it out of the garage.

      • khal spencer Says:

        Jeebus. If I got on something like that the kids down the street would be hollering and laughing “look at that old fat guy with the gut riding a racing bike” and I would slither home and hide under the sink, a la Randy in A Christmas Story.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        Damn it, now I kinda wanta take it out for a spin. But that hunchbacked, low-ass Profile base bar is Death, with a capital Death. Maybe some other time. …

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        OK, so I couldn’t stand it anymore. Swapped wheels, tires, and cassette, added pedals, checked various bolts, and set off on a Race of Truth around the cul-de-sac. It all comes back to you, just like riding a bike.

        Chrono de Cul-de-Sac

        • Click here for a larger image. Photo © 2021 by Herself.

        • Shawn Says:

          Pasty white legs always add a nice flair to those “I’m really fast images”. I was encountering that phenomenon a couple of days ago when I was riding in a pair of bib shorts that ride high up on my thigh – “Eeeks! Those can’t be my once uber tan legs!”

          Of course we all abide by the top-of-seat height to top-of-bar height vs age formula of X(cm) = ( AGE – 35 ). If you’re a 20 year old wannabe, your bar is 15cm below your seat height, and if you’re 65, your bar is 30cm above your seat height. See. Now isn’t that more comfortable? So says an ageing formulaic 23 year old who for some reason rides out of the saddle a lot.

        • Patrick O'Grady Says:

          Also, nothing says “Chrono Master” like a green Steelman T-shirt, some ratty Columbia shorts, and a backwards Campy cap.

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