Posts Tagged ‘Birthdays’

Bikes, trains and automobiles

March 27, 2019

I didn’t take a camera on today’s ride, so you’ll have to make do with a feeble iPhone shot of the bosque just starting to show some color.

Thanks to everyone who chimed in with birthday wishes on this, my induction into Official Geezerhood.

Is there a probationary period? If I fail to chase enough whippersnappers off my lawn will I be stripped of my galluses, wattles and trifocals, and demoted to Youth?

The birthday ride is done and dusted, and like last year I exceeded my expectations: 45 miles, or 72.4 kilometers. Thus I have some more kms banked for subsequent birthdays. One of these years I won’t have to ride at all.

Which will give me more time for podcasting. Yes, yes, yes, it’s another edition of Radio Free Dogpatch, Senior Moment Edition. You’re welcome. Now get the hell off my lawn.

P L A Y    R A D I O    F R E E    D O G P A T C H

• Technical notes: This episode was recorded with an Audio-Technica AT2035 microphone and a Zoom H5 Handy Recorder. I edited using Apple’s GarageBand on a 2014 MacBook Pro. The music is “Matador’s Entry,” from I really wanted to work “The Coroner’s Footnote” from Half Man Half Biscuit in here somewhere, but couldn’t pull it off. You should listen to it anyway. While you’re at it give an ear to “Every Time a Bell Rings.”

Cake me, bitches

March 27, 2019

That’s Birthday No. 1, back in 1955. What a snappy dresser I was.
Happily, I got over it. From bowtied pups do mangy Mad Dogs grow.

‘I’m not dead yet. …’

March 27, 2018

Sixty-four, Bog help us all. The lyric “When I get older, losing my hair / Many years from now” no longer applies.

I’m not that handy mending a fuse, and Herself doesn’t knit sweaters by the fireside. Still, just last Saturday we were doing the garden, digging the weeds. Who could ask for more?

The 64km birthday ride is going to have to wait, though. The weather appears to be taking a turn for the worse. If I’m lucky I may be able to manage 64 minutes of running before the rain comes.

Piece of cake

March 27, 2016
See? Told you I was cute. Once.

See? Told you I was cute. Once.

I didn’t get a bicycle for that first birthday, either. I was robbed.

The next 60

March 28, 2014
The Soma Saga in its present configuration. I'm thinking about losing the rando' bars for some short-reach drops, beefing up the bar tape and fattening up the tires.

The Soma Saga in its present configuration. I’m thinking about losing the rando’ bars for some short-reach drops, beefing up the bar tape and fattening up the tires.

Thanks to all of you for the most excellent birthday wishes. No. 60 was a quiet day around Chez Dog — since Herself was road-tripping for business purposes, the party was an exclusive affair; just me, the menagerie, and all those voices in my head (happily, they don’t eat much, not even ice cream).

Today, a milestone behind me and various millstones ahead, I continued what I’m calling Ride the Neglected Bicycles Week. So far it’s seen the Voodoos Nakisi and Wazoo, the Co-Motion Divide Rohloff, and the Jones all get out of the garage for some vigorous thrashing, and there are still two days left. Tomorrow’s supposed to be 60-something and mostly sunny. You can’t stop me!

When not riding, I’ve been reading about riding. “Life Is a Wheel” is Bruce Weber’s account of his second cross-country cycling trip, undertaken at age 57. I had been aware of his ride — a writer for The New York Times, Weber blogged about it for the paper — but the book had somehow slipped my mind. I saw the review, downloaded the book, and so far Weber and I have spent an enjoyable few evenings together.

Like other road books — “Travels With Charley,” “Blue Highways,” and of course, “On the Road,” “Life Is a Wheel” is giving me notions. Nothing so elaborate as a cross-country ride, mind you, certainly not in springtime. But taking a few days away, under my own steam, sounds like a wonderful departure from business as usual.


The big six-oh (no)

March 27, 2014
Pikes Peak as seen from the Yucca Flats dog-walking ghetto at Palmer Park.

Pikes Peak as seen from the Yucca Flats dog-walking ghetto at Palmer Park.

I awakened with a start this morning to someone singing “Happy Birthday” and a giant furry creature sitting on my chest.

“Well, that’s that,” I thought. “The devil has finally come to collect. At least things will be warm from now on.”

But no, it was just Herself (singing) and Field Marshal Turkish von Turkenstein (sitting). The former was off to work and the latter was interested primarily in my bedside glass of water. Miss Mia Sopaipilla and Mister Boo, being junior staff, were on perimeter duty.

I got up, grabbed a cup of joe (first things first) and checked the mirror. I didn’t look any younger, but I didn’t look any older, either. We must take these little gifts as they are offered.

This being March in Colorado, I jumped the gun and rode my age-to-be yesterday, in kilometers, when it was shorts-and-short-sleeves weather. Today looks a little iffier, with a high in the mid-50s, a chance of rain and plenty of wind.

It was the sort of ride I’ve come to relish in my declining years — a blend of city streets, gravel paths and single-track, taken on a weirdomobile, the Voodoo Nakisi with its triple crankset and 700×43 tires. It’s spring break, but I managed to avoid breaking anything, despite a ragged parade of homeless zombies on the southern end of the Pikes Peak Greenway and rush-hour traffic on the trails in Palmer Park.

Afterward I cycled over to Ranch Foods Direct and picked up a steak to grill for birthday dinner, which included mashed Yukon Golds, steamed asparagus and a big bowl of ice cream. We watched Stewart and Colbert, walked the Boo in a light rain and that was that. A fine time was had by all.

I’m still waiting for wisdom to arrive, but I haven’t seen the UPS truck yet. Let’s hope it beats the devil here.

The worm turns (59)

March 28, 2013
"I'm HOW old?"

“I’m HOW old?”

“You’re 57, right?” my friend inquired.

“Hell no,” I replied. “Try 59. March 27, 1954.”

He didn’t believe me. Neither did I.

But it’s true — I turned 59 on Wednesday, the night of the Worm Moon, the first full moon of spring.

We didn’t make a big deal of it. Herself and I had already enjoyed our group birthday dinner out with friends. And anyway, 59 is kind of a bullshit birthday, don’t you think? I mean, it’s good to be on the right side of the lawn and all, but The Big One is a year off, and for that bad boy I want something special: a freshly cloned body to house my exquisitely twisted brain. Say, something in the mid-20s chronologically, as that’s about when I began to start showing the hard mileage.

That’s not to say I disliked my 30s, what I can remember of them. And hitting the “big” three-oh didn’t bug me at all. I got off work at The Pueblo Chieftain, had a quiet beer or two at the Irish Pub, and went home. I’ve gotten crazier than that on the job.

Forty I did not like for some unknown reason. There was a party. I was the pooper. That shit put a stop to the parties, I can tell you.

Fifty? Meh. The AARP gets you by the plums with a downhill pull and that’s that.

But 60? That’s gonna be the shiznit. You lot better start saving your pennies for my birthday body, as I expect the cloning procedure to be expensive, even with Obamacare. I’d like to have some hair in places other than my nostrils, ears and shoulders, maybe do without the vision correction, and be hung a little better, and ain’t none of that shit covered, not even for Democrats.

Post-birthday nose meets same old grindstone

March 29, 2012

A thousand thank-yous to all who proffered happy-birthday wishes instead of death threats.

The festivities began with a pleasant two-hour bike ride — headwind out, tailwind back — and concluded with a high-speed burst of cookery after Herself invited the neighbors over.

We’ve been to their house for eats a couple of times, but had yet to reciprocate, so never having cooked for them I stuck with my basic skill set — a simple pico de gallo with blue corn chips followed by a pot of pintos in chipotle, which I turned into burritos smothered in hot Pueblo green chile with a side of roasted potatoes in red Chimayo chile.

Herself contributed a salad and a delicious raspberry cobbler. Beer and wine were consumed, along with a dollop of uisce beatha. Laughter ensued, and a fine time was had by all, except for the Turk’, who despises company, especially if it includes an aggro’ Chihuahua named Cujo.

Now it’s deadline time at the DogHaus, and somebody around here needs to get real funny real fast. We didn’t spend much on my birthday, but the White Tornado has a new fuel pump and the upstairs toilet has new guts, and Toyota mechanics and plumbers don’t work for free.

58 laps down, ? to go. …

March 27, 2012

Once again The Associated Press has failed to mention my birthday in “Today In History,” though they have taken the time to mention hacks like Anthony Lewis (85), Michael York (70) and Quentin Tarantino (49). Between these gomers and the Pulitzer people I’m starting to get seriously pissed off.

Other noxious lowlights of the day, for those of you disinclined to click links:

• Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon sighted what we now call Florida, and don’t we wish he hadn’t?

• Milton Berle died of colon cancer in Los Angeles.

• Marlon Brando declined the Oscar for best actor, awarded for his role as Don Vito Corleone in “The Godfather.”

• And March Madness was born in 1939, just days after the Nazis invaded Czechoslovakia. A coincidence? I think not.

Happy birthday to Herself

March 12, 2012

All hail Herself, who today celebrates her … um, well, a birthday. No need to mention which one. You wouldn’t believe it anyway, as she still appears to be around 19.

Cat in a box

"How do you like your birthday gift, honey? Whaddaya mean, you already have one of these?"

We celebrated early with dinner at The Blue Star last night, and as always it was damn’ fine eating. The joint was jumpin’, too, which was nice to see. Maybe all that jabber about the Great Recession having ended is true after all, because The Blue Star ain’t exactly Mickey D’s, yo. No drive-up windows there, is what.

We started with appetizers — stuffed poblano with chipotle orange sauce and flash-fried calamari with sweet Thai chili sauce — then settled into the serious eating. Herself dug into some roasted lamb leg ragout with pappardelle and brown-butter peas, while I went for the ahi crusted with Italian breadcrumbs, cream-of-mushroom beurre, sweet-pea pasta and crispy leeks.

For dessert, we shared The Corleone — vanilla-bean ice cream rolled in graham-cracker crumbs, white and dark chocolate, roasted walnuts, pecans and almonds, cinnamon and nutmeg, drizzled with honey.

Ordinarily we hit some high-end bottle of wine with dinner, as Sunday is half-price night at The Blue Star. But we’ve both been into beer lately, so instead we had a couple drafts of Colorado hop squeezin’s from Boulder’s Avery Brewing — Joe’s American Pilsner and IPA.

This constitutes treason, as Bristol Brewing sits right next door to The Blue Star, and several of their excellent beers are on the menu. But I’ll make up for it this week. We’re looking at a stretch of sunny days with temps in the 60s and 70s, and if that ain’t Red Rocket Pale Ale-drinking weather, I’ve never seen it.