Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Raisin Hope at Reston

A long time ago, in a land far, far away I once did head injury rehab. Really. When I graduated college, I wanted to do a few years of what I called "Peace Corps" work and went to work at Easter Seal in Baltimore retraining people with head injuries to go back to work, or re-learn how to function again.

Most of my clients... young people. And more than a few of them were injured in bike accidents.

So this is a subject that is near and dear to my heart.

If you get a chance, head on over to --- and read Mike's article on Saul Raisin and the Reston Race this weekend.

Every day that I went to work at Easter Seal I knew that I was making a difference in someone's life. The incredible advances that have happened since then... make me feel like I was working in the dark ages. So go ahead and take a peak, you might learn something, too!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Another One Bites the Dust

I'm home. Semi-unpacked and about to hop in the tub to chill out with a good book and a bottle of wine.

Low lights of the State TT... 3 riders DQ'd for drafting... all of them juniors. Several more reports of other adults drafting, but unfortunately not in front of the officials that I had on the course. Deep sigh. Cheating is stealing, and it just sucks.

Oh, and there was the bad crash between Maria and Brenna... two great people. Maria has 30 stitches in her face and a broken tt bike... Brenna luckily escaped a bit better off. When I saw the riders down, my first thought was that sick feeling that it was two juniors and they must be dead. Not that having it be Maria and Brenna was better, but they weren't dead, and it wasn't a kid. Oh, geez. I bet my cortisol level is past the roof...

And then there is the driver who is going to sue me after a cyclist changed lanes and forced her off the road. Nice.

But this was probably our best run event. My team was everywhere, doing everything and I absolutely knew that I could still ride when Mark Pye took charge. Mark is THE MAN... and even painted a skull and cross bones in front of the bad way thru the bridge, and took the time to lay out with arrows the best way thru some pot holes. Many kisses... many.

And if you missed your start time... it wasn't because of the whip bitch. Julie was cracking the whip, getting everyone lined up. Those of you who were late... some of you 15 + minutes late... mirror time.

Mike, Christine, Steve, and Frank (who had just had spine surgery....) they rock. Big time. Again, everything that needed to be done... done.

Sharon and James, did the registration, and kept all the paperwork in line. And then some... Poor Sharon is in Texas, and still working on our tt.

Steve, Brent, Mark, Bill... kept all the cars as close together as possible... this is a small area.

And the turn around crew... Cliff, Scott, Steve and Jake. They kept everyone safe. These guys would have taken on a car, and did, to keep riders safe.

Paula and Dave... ran every errand and called numbers to the chief ref. All day. In the sun. And it was HOT.

There are more people... because there is always so much to do. Like Carolyn Goble who volunteer officiated... so that we could try to even the playing field against people drafting... to Gilbert, Danielle and Jessie who always do such an outstanding job. Mille grazie.

Oh, lets also thank Mother Nature... who gave us the glorious wind... which pushed riders to the breaking point. I know, my bike was airborne on several occasions. The Hed Trispoke was probably NOT the wise choice on a day with such wicked cross winds.

Thanks everyone for coming. And I hope that you like the prizes, from the Natures Path bars and bags, Contes gift cards, Wawa gift card, Chipotle (YUM!) cards, Fiorucci meat bags, and all the other swag. Much of which was donated by Julie... so if you got other swag, and if you got a junior swag bag, I bet you got stuff that Julie's fast little feet won for you. So say thanks to those who give so much back to our sport.

I'm going to go pass out now.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

TNP State Sr. Crit

Wow. What a cool course... I heard it all day. It snaked, it went up, it went down, and the 180...Wow. You missed it... you really missed something great. Natures Path, and Carolyn Goble and Dennis Ranier in particular get gold stars for putting on such a great first time race.

Maybe if we are all good, we'll get to do it again!

So how'd it work for me... Doo doo. The cat 4 women raced at 8 something this morning and Colsweatsalot was doing Army stuff at Ft Hood all week and got in at 12:30 last night. A wee case of food poisoning on top of it... and lets just say that the girls who sucked her wheel, got covered in something not nice as she barfed her way around the course. I sent her to Patient Worst to get an IV, which the nurse refused to give her since her heart rate was "normal." Uh, normal for a fat chain-smoker, but not normal for Sharon. Grrr....

Then the debate about what to do with the 4 entry 40+ womens field. Yeah, we wanted to combine the cat 1-3 race with it, but the chance of bad weather, and having this be the state championship... we didnt want the 1-3's to have to race 2 hours later. So the 40+ women raced later, with now 5 women.

The wind picked up. The wind gusted. And the first 90 degree turn with straw bales... I got blown sideways into a straw bale. I spent the next 3 laps turning myself inside out trying to catch back on in the wind before deciding that it wasnt worth killing myself... and I still averaged a faster ride than the 1-3 race. Go figure.

The good thing of the day... Julie smoked the 40+ race and won. See what happens when she doesnt have to drag my lazy ass around?

I'm back home, gonna hop in the tub and then finish up stuff for the state time trial. Want to really see carnage? I'm hearing a 35 mph wind out of the north-west tommorrow... which means a killer tailwind heading down 301, and a bitch of a head wind coming back. We'll be picking up bodies off the side of the road for days.

Good thing we start and stop at the rescue squad... huh?

Friday, June 19, 2009


Race registration for our TT closed at 6 pm. So I got out on the bike after zipping the info to James, so that I could get a ride in and relax.


Ring, ring, ring, ring... Help, I went to register and registration is CLOSED!!!

Yep, thats the funny thing. You put your info on bike reg 6 weeks in advance, and then send tons of reminder emails. Beg people to register. Tell them that when they play the EBAY game that bad things can happen... And still people are shocked when they go to register with 20 seconds to go, that bad things can happen.

How could anyone have thought of that!!!!

Nope, you are not getting in. Sorry, I feel for you. Really.

I got home and then spent the rest of the night stuffing packets. A little vino... Bravo tv, and a cat who thinks he should be a "prize." (no you cant have Fuzzy.)

Thank God its Friday. I'll have twenty emails begging this morning. The answer is no, but I do feel for you. Don't do it again. Enter early, make a girl's life easier.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Running over Mickey

We save turtles, heck, we even save snakes... and once a tractor trailer went by us and blew an Indigo Bunting out of the sky and Cliff snagged it out of rushing traffic and held it until it regained consciousness and flew away...

Tonight, I saved my first mouse.

Cliff, J and I went out to West Creek to ride the Natures Path course and to pick up, and drop off race stuff. Of course as soon as we got there it started to rain. Thats ok, we ride in the rain. And then the phone calls about the race started and well... I might as well have stayed home. The joys of race promotion.

I finally decided that I really didn't want to loose yet another cell phone due to "moisture", so we headed back to the truck to ditch the phone. We went under one tree where a mother red tail hawk was trying to encourage junior to take the leap, and then went under a bridge where J and Cliff almost ran over a small brown lump in the road.

Being slow as shi* I got a better view of the lump. Said lump was a baby field mouse, cowering in the road, trying not to get smooshed by said instruments of death...

So I turned around and scooped up the little tacker... Cute beady little eyes... tiny little body with his heart beating a thousand beats a second. And then Cliff said, "Yuck, you touched it? Thats nasty! Eeeeewwwww." This from the man who has carried sick kittens for miles in his jersey.

Yeah, I touched him, and then put him in the woods. Cute little Mickey... soon to be snake food.

And then we went back to the truck and drank a bottle to celebrate the little sucker. Poor Mickey, he may end up snake food, but no bikes were going to run him over tonight.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

The weekend so far...

Ok, so the good things first... after my ride this morning, I zipped up to Waynesboro to watch Georgie show. He took a group 3, and I got to be there to watch. Then I got to go for a run with him. Happiness is getting to see my dog, watching him look so grand and happy, and just getting to snuggle a bit.

Then I found out that the kid who got run over and his head cut up at Ride Sally Ride... Jake King. I've said it before-Jake is the future of cycling. I'm going to be crippled up and I'll bore people to death with tales of how I knew Jake when he was a scrawny little kid, with a fierce pained look on his face as he demolished the junior fields. Heal quick Jake, you have racer's legs to rip off...

And then I read an email from Mike May... and I was flattered. Yeah, I'll do it, but it will be a secret until it comes out. Just that it was so timely, with the state tt in 3 weeks, and me going into my psycho-bitch phase that happens every year about this time as I make sure that everything and anything that needs to be done to make this a SAFE and FAIR race happens.

Life is good.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Thanks Matt

If you've ever been to a race in the Richmond area and have had a crash, it was probably Matt who stitched you up. Matt who scrubbed you, consoled you, and laughed with you about how cyclists just seem to fall down, go boom.

He not only saves us when we race, but he saves me in real life.

Trust me to show up to the race on Sunday to cheer my girls on since I felt like crap. Matt of course asks me how I'm doing, and I tell him. Which results in him sending in orders for a ct scan the next day. I was sure that I had an ovarian cyst rupture, Matt wasnt so sure and was not about to let me go septic. So he told me not to come into the office, just to call and get the referral.

Then I spend the rest of the day volunteer officiating to help out, and watched Matt stitching and scrubbing torn up cyclists, all day.

Yeah, turns out that J's original diagnosis was right, but Matt was right to make me go get it checked out. And then Matt just called me, at 7pm, to let me know that once all the contrast dye and sludge stuff passes, that I'm good to go again. You know, as soon as I can move away from the bathroom...

So thanks Matt, for always taking care of us less than bright cyclists... its a tough job, but someone has to do it!