Tuesday, November 25, 2008

reminicing... lawn bowling

i just saw this picture of shelley & cari at the world cups. more exciting, though, were the lawn bowlers. melbourne must be my dream-- lawn bowling and track racing in one spot!

i have gotten a lot more readers since last year. so, if you are new, you may not recall my amazing story about lawn bowling with the oakland lawn bowling club. i suggest you read my old post. i promise you won't regret it. and if you already read it last year, i suggest reading it again, because it is still delightful and educational the second time around.

lawn bowling: better than bocce ball.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


just wanted to give a shout out to my friend evan. his project that he started this spring for youth speaks, a spoken word program for high schoolers, was just in the SF chronicle. check out the article.

evan did portraits of all the youth poets and these are displayed on street corners and in BART stations all over san francisco. moreover, under each portrait is a phone number -- and if you call the number there is a voice recording of that youth's poem.

check out his website for "somewhere in the advance of nowhere: youth, imagination, and transformation." here, you can see all of the portraits and listen to the audio. the location/street corners of the portraits is listed when you click on the smaller images. also, there is a description of the project.

a lot of you will be in SF this weekend, for the bike expo and the golden gate cross race-- so, if you have some free time, jot down a few of the locations of the murals and take a little city bike ride to see them in person. (there are about 4 in the 16th & mission bart station-- and a lot are in that neighborhood.) it will definitely be worth it. they are pretty amazing as you can see from the website, but more amazing in person. he is such an amazing artist.

thanks evan!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

distraction needed

looking at my blog is even making me sad, so let me quickly try to change the topic.

and what a better distrcation than thinking how about hot vicky pendleton is. i will not make a big shrine on my blog for her. that is only reserved for people i know and love. all one need do is google images: victoria pendleton or vicky pendleton.

but i will pull out one image of VP doing a deadlift or starting a clean or something like that.

mmm, yeah.

i have been weight lifting for 2.5 weeks. so now i will share with you some expert information about her form.

1. please observe the orange line. vicky's back is very flat with a slight arch. she is also wearing a pretty hot form fitting top.

2. please observe the hot pink box.vicky's shoulders are rolled back, which allow for the flat and slightly arched back in number 1. this rolled back shoulders also probably improves her cleavage, but we weren't so lucky to have frontal view.

3. please observe the yellow circle. i saved the best for last. vicky p's hips are pushed back. this is good for many reasons, but mostly because it is hot to look at. i suppose it also results in a clean line between her toes to her knees or something like that... but i am pretty sure we all just prefer to look at her butt instead.
and for those of you who are way too good to objectify vicky p.... (p.s. i don't care if you are better than me), here is a really awesome interview of her that came out about a month ago. i found it quite touching and thoughtful... and if you are into all that sport psychology mumbo jumbo, i am sure you will especially like it...

but really, i just like looking at her google images.


for being so pissy yesterday.
and sorry for dropping the f-bomb way too many times per capita. (mom, don't read yesterdays post)
thanks for the kind words and nice emails everyone.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

i still have my kickstand

so first off, yes i was stupid. i knew it was stupid at the time, but that didn't stop me.

meeting in downtown oakland. biked there, locked up my bike. boss wanted me to go back to office in san leandro; i drove with her. she drove me home. but i was lazy and didn't get my bike at night. i figured the front wheel might be gone. but i wasn't expecting to step out of BART and see the whole fucking thing stripped down. like all stripped down except the cranks. so, yeah, i know i was stupid. i don't need at dispariging shaking of the head, as i know i got what was coming to me as i was playing russian roulette. but it still sucks. i hate this fall. it sucks. it just fucking sucks.

but, i mean, it was fucking stripped. yeah, yeah, i knew the wheels were gone, and seat and seat post... the chain was also gone. and my flat pedals. and my handlebars. and also that awesome black leather handlebar cover-- that was stitched on the handlebar instead of tape in a crisscross pattern.....that i can never get back. i loved that leather stitched on the handlebars. it was so... classy... and my really awesome yellow cable housing. that was pimp.

i unlocked my stripped bike and slung over my shoulder and began walking home. a couple minutes later it registered that the fork was gone. the fork?!? come the fuck on! this is my beautiful royal blue motobecane with a beautiful matching royal blue steel fork, and now no fork. front and rear derraileurs were gone too...whatever, that is disposible. but that fork. my cranks were still there. and my kick stand. thanks. i appreciate it. then i looked back at my rear triangle and the whole fucking one side is bashed in. who knows if that can be bent out or if it is even worth it. even the frame is trashed.... i wish the whole bike was just taken so this lovely machine wasn't put in so much misery. it is almost worse carrying home the thing in shambles, wondering if you can even ever make it whole again.

the financial impact of this bike isn't significant. i bought it for $70 in 2005. but it was my first bike with gears. it was the first bike i rode more than 5 miles on. it was also the first bike i rode more than 40 miles on. this was the bike that i commuted on. and it was the bike i discovered bike riding as a form of exercise on. you can go really far on a bike-- like bike to different cities--with your own two legs....way out to castro valley and up redwood road. i did that all the first time on this bike.

so i hope someone likes that pretty blue fork and those handlebars that are laced up with that black leather. and that totally sweet yellow cable housing. but i bet they wish they had the fucking kick stand. i love my kick stand.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Friday, November 14, 2008

buy my pies!

yes, buy my pies! this is tomorrow at RTWC #3 at hellyer. high noon warmup. 2pm racing. pie buying, til they go.
  • 6x kentucky derby pies. (these are chocolate chip gooie goodness pies)
  • 1x pan of brownies (not as good as jen coler brownies, but i can't compete with the master)
today i wanted to test ride fancy bikes. i couldn't go test ride fancy bikes at a bike shop where they know me, cause, well, they know i can't afford a $5,000 bike. so, i had to find a hidden bike shop where they wouldn't know me.

i went to cyclepath in pleasanton. i chose this shop cause their website looked like it was a big shop with lots of bikes and there were some cervellos there. ooo la la. that is a pretty fancy bike to test ride for shits.

i don't know anyone in pleasanton and my guilt-level was fairly low...as i didn't have a relationship with that shop. that, and i was a bit annoyed with pleaanton in general, cause i had to deal with a frustrating situation regarding valley care hospital which, let me just say, if you don't have health insurance, go to a different hospital.

so i go into cyclepath, and who works there other than dell from fremont bike club! see, my whole plan screwed. i met dell last summer when i went to do larry's sprints in fremont. we hadn't seen each other in awhile and he is helping another customer and i am waiting and he gives me a funny look and goes: "i know you, beth, right?" then the customer who he was helping goes: "beth bikes!?! i read your blog!" and then i got kind of embarrassed. and realized that even in pleasanton i cannot hide under the rug to test ride fancy bikes.

so, as i knew dell, i had to actually test ride bikes in my price range. that was okay. but, he did let me take the cervello out for a spin after i test rode bikes i could afford! and it was AWESOME. i thought about not coming back.... all i left in the shop was my wallet, cell phone, car keys, house keys, and bag. and those things all total less than $5,000-- so really, it would have been a win-win for me. except dell knew me. so, that wouldn't have been cool. maybe i should go out to lodi next time.

right as i was leaving for the cervello test ride, john from EMC2 who always kicks my ass at the track showed up. he is coming tomorrow and is going to kick my ass again. he didn't quite recognize me and i through him off, cause i was wearing a proman jersey they gave me when i rode with them at alpenrose....because, i figured if i was going to test ride a cervello, i needed to look super-official.... but then all these people at the shop knew i wasn't riding on that team, so then i ended up just feeling like a big poser.

moral of the story: even if you borrow fancy diamonds for a gala ball, people will recognize you as the mailman and ask you why you are at the gala ball and wearing some cheap cubic zirconium. to which you make a remark that don't believe in blood diamonds, then secretly feel bad because you are wearing blood diamonds.

right? it is exactly like that.

oh yeah, quads yesterday were 61.5cm.

anyway, buy my pies. they are baking now. peace.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

baby ruuuuuuth

i wish i was just being a smart aleck and making an obnoxious quote of one my all time favorite movies.... but no, i just ate a baby ruth candy bar. it was a lot more gross than i remember.

so blah blah blah i'm a big fat loser these days and go to bed early and get up early to ride my bike. 5:45am up and 5:55am out. i don't need anymore time. put on the chamois, brush the teeth, put in the contacts, helmet on, and out the door. no need to dilly dally. breakfast you ask? fuck that shit. it isn't worth the 10 extra minutes. i don't start thinking about breakfast until about an hour and a half into the ride. then i get hungry. but then work is only a half hour away, and in that half hour i can have some happy little hallucinations about breakfast.

like today. my hallucination included getting into work and eating yogurt, kashi, and bananas. then i remembered reality: i finished the yogurt and bananas. and dry kashi is just plain masochistic. so, i'd just go to the grocery store and getting more yogurt, bananas, and more lunch rations, as i was running very thin. all was great, except that i would be another day that smelly coworker. whatever.

so i get into work and as i am changing i reach into my back pocket of my jersey and pull out my cell phone, house keys, and.... and that was it. wallet? wallet? jesusfingchrist. (sorry mom).

this is not a good thing to happen around 8am. i was very hungry. so i did what any good person would do. i eat my lunch. 2 slices bread, hummus, cheese, lettuce, and fake baloney. (i had also ran out of avocado and tomato, which i was going to buy this morning...but i guess not!) anyway, lunch made a lovely breakfast. but then i shot myself in the foot for actual lunch. that was the last of the hummus, lettuce, and fake baloney. left in my lunch bag in the refrigerator was 2 slices of cheddar cheese and bread. it was going to be a long day.....

and then i remembered now i couldn't BART home because i didn't have my wallet, so i'd have to bike another friggin' 15 miles home. it was going to be a longer day.......

lunch i ate my bread and cheese, and i have done my best to scrounge some other foodstuffs today:
-a banana left over from a meeting
-a cherry jolly rancher in a coworkers candy bowl

then i found a dollar in my desk drawer. this made me very happy! so i went to long's drug store across the street. what can i get for a dollar?! i felt like skipping in the store.

then i remembered it was only a dollar. i could have gotten some 2 for one powder Jell-O in a box.... or duncan hines cake mix..... but then i remembered i had to pay tax..... so i needed something under 92 cents or so, just to be safe and not embarrass myself at the checkout. i couldn't even get a little bad of chips, cause those are 99 cents... so i went to the candy bar isle, cause that was my only option. something with peanuts made the most sense. i was down to snickers and baby ruth. now, the option should have been obvious. snickers. but, i thought there were more actual peanuts in baby ruth bars. and then i looked at the nutrition facts, cause really, i like empirical evidence. both have 280 calories. but a baby ruth bar is 2.10 oz, while a snickers bar is 2.07 oz. i am clearly a bargain shopper. but, i made a bad decision, cause that baby ruth bar was nasty. like, really nasty.

so, why don't i just borrow money from someone at work? a sensible question. but i don't want to be beholden on coworkers. plus, i won't be back here til monday, and in these times of economic distress, i don't think i can take the inflation.

on another note, let's talk about my pants, as it seems to be a topic of much interest to me and the world. so my pants were getting super baggy. like saggy ass baggy. quads shrinking, made for loose pant legs. i was normal again! then i started lifting. no problem at all in the quad area though. my pants were still loose in the legs. but yesterday i noticed a new problem with my slacks. the pocket buckle. i have squatter's ass. my ass is getting huuuge. and now my pockets are buckling out. this doesn't bode well, as i have only been lifting for two weeks. what can i say, i am becoming a bisexual boy's dream come true.

this post had potential to be funny, but my execution is off. apologies for the poor writing. i hope to get back on form soon. congratulations to making it to the end. i owe you. i even got bored writing it.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

thank god for roommates

so my desire to live by myself has been increasing exponentially this past year.  not because i don't love my roommates (i do!) or because i don't love my apartment (i do!)... but for some unknown desire that makes no actual logical reason.  i don't ever act on this urge because i know that the second i lived alone bad things would happen... like i'd become a hermit and call meals on wheels and ask if they deliver to people in their twenties.

so at these times i let reality set in and think of all the reasons it is good to have my roommates... (apart from the touchy feely crap and the financial reasons):
-i eat more than my fair share of food
-i use their computers
-i drive their cars
-i wear their clothes when mine are all dirty and i am too lazy to do laundry
-i rely on their shampoo, tooth paste, and contact solution (as i never purchase my own personal hygiene products) 
-i encroach on their social life and usurp their friends because i don't have any of my own
now, please don't think i am a total dead weight.  i do contribute sometimes, albeit in meager ways.  i clean, cook, pay the electric bill, take out the trash, get along with the neighbors.  yeah.  and i also open jars.  Rrrrrrr.  

this weekend i found another reason i need my roommates around.

so in health care we sometimes talk about ADLs, which are Activities of Daily Living.  An inability to perform these renders one dependent on others, resulting in a self-care deficit. These ADLs are measured and used to determine functioning and often have implications relating to disability or elder care benefits.  There are six ADLs:
  1. bathing: receives no assistance or assistance in bathing just one part of the body.
  2. toileting: goes to toilet, uses toilet, arranges clothes, and returns without assistance.  (may use cane/walker for support)
  3. transferring: moves in and out of bed and chair without assistance (may use cane or walker)
  4. continence: controls bowel and bladder by self
  5. dressing: gets clothes and dresses without assistance
  6. feeding: feeds self without assistance
In addition to ADLs to determine dependence, health researchers also look at something called IADLs, which are Instrument Activities of Daily Living.  These are used to render a person's ability to live independently. Above and beyond ADLs, these measurements are often used to determine the need for assisted living or home health workers for the elderly.  
  1. Ability to use telephone
  2. Shopping
  3. Food preparation
  4. Housekeeping
  5. Laundry
  6. Mode of transportation
  7. Responsible of own medications
  8. Ability to handle finances
When considering my ability to live independently, I find it useful to evaluate myself in these IADL measurements.  As it turns out (as I will detail below), I am fairly dependent on my roommates.
  1. telephone- i always let my cell phone die and/or never answer my phone so i rely on them for contact with the outside world.
  2. shopping- i didn't pull my grocery store weight in september
  3. food prep- lily is a better cook than me
  4. housekeeping- betsy loves cleaning the bathtub
  5. laundry- thanks for the black socks lily!
  6. transportation- well, i have a car now, but i spent years and years of taking lily's 
  7. medications- i am a vitamin steeler, mwahaha
  8. finances- i take betsy's quarters from her change jar when i need change for parking meters
so, yeah, these IADL independent living measurements tell me i shouldn't live alone....although, functionally speaking, there is nothing rendering me unable to do these things.  


i need roommates to perform my basic ADLs.

so yesterday, i am trying to take off my sweatshirt.  and i am so sore I start living it over my head and just can't pull it off.  and not in the way you can't pull off your shirt cause your head is stuck in the armhole... but unable to take it off cause i can't move my arms any higher.  weight lifting's a bitch.  

so there i am with my sweatshirt half off, arms half in the air, and i can't raise them anymore.  so i wimper: "lily.... betsy.... help."  and then someone comes by and raises the sweatshirt over my head.  

ADLs. dressing.  definitely not looking for a studio anytime soon....

Friday, November 07, 2008

update 3: putsying along

so usually i am pretty down on the time change. i get very sad when it gets dark so early.  i guess with my old age i think i am going to turn into a pumpkin being out past dark. and when it is dark at 4 or 5pm, i promptly get home, put on the tea kettle, and begin crocheting pot holders or something like that.  seasonal depression kinda started a bit early this year, so i was quite fearful "fall forward" was going to kick me while i was already down.

at times like these, trickery is necessary.  i was determined to beat the time change.   so i thought if i tricked myself to stay in the old time zone, i can easily get up at 5:30, because it is actually 6:30. then i can extend my commute to work by an hour and go ride to work via redwood rd and lake chabot.   so this week i've putsied to work the long way three days.  by the time i get home and eat, i am very sleepy.  and there is no use fighting it because, after all, it is dark.  i don't care if the clock says 9:15.  that is really 10:15.  and there is no reason to stay awake.  so, one week out and i've beat day light savings.

today i had off work, so i thought i'd putsy along with fred.  i wanted to go for a long ride, but he said he ran out of geritol so he said we could only do 3 or 4 hours.  i really wanted to ride out by the oil refineries, cause i hadn't been there in a while...and that is longer than a 4 hr ride round trip, especially when i will be putsying with the old guy. but god bless BART, because we can take the train out to pleasant hill.  so we are to meet at 8:30.  
8:30 i open my door, sit on my steps and put on my shoes and helmet.
8:32 i stand in the street.  no fred.  i wait a few minutes. 
8:34 i go down the street to ring his buzzer on his apartment.  no fred.  
8:38 was he at bart?  were we supposed to meet at BART?  we do that sometimes. he's probably waiting at BART for me and pissed i am late!   
8:39 i bike down to 19th st.  
8:44 i arrive at 19th st. no fred outside.  i go in.  no fred inside.  wait wait wait.
8:54. my train comes.  no fred.  i guess i should get on the train.  
9: 17 i get to pleasant hill.  i call fred.  no answer.  uh oh.  he is pissed.  i don't know how i missed him, but it is probably my fault and he is going to mad. 
fred gets mad at me and dumps me every fall for one thing or another. this happened both in 2006 and 2007.  i told him this october i was not going to see him much so he wouldn't dump me. october came and went, so i figured we were okay.  nope.   i lost him before we even started our ride.  he is probably mad and totally not going to talk to me for a month.  this was one was totally my fault.

riding out on franklin canyon road rules.  but it would have been better with fred because he would have told me good stories.  and then the birds would have chirped and he'd have known all the names of the different birds.  so i putsied along, thinking about fred.  passed the oil refineries.  i only ever see them on the weekend when they are lying still, not when the smoke stacks are working in full force. so strangely pretty. and then i thought about how everyone likes riding up in marin and i was all excited to see the smoke stacks and oil refineries.  it is kinda beautiful...ya know, in that eastern european bloc kinda way.  rolled into rodeo, hercules, no fred.  it was nice out so i decided to go around the bears, then meandered my way back home. 

got home, called fred.  where were you?  where were YOU?  i was outside at 8:30.  I was outside at 8:30. i went to your apartment.  i went to YOUR apartment. i went to BART.  I went to BART.  i don't know how we missed each other.  i blame day light savings...even though it is almost a week out.  sad we didn't putsy together, but lucky me i didn't get dumped and he is still talking to me.  he even said: "maybe next friday" so that means i am safe.

i've putsied a lot this week and my quads haven't shrunk at all: 60.5cm. now it is all about minimizing losses.  but not for long.  in one hour i am going to pump some iron and get HUUUUUUGE.  so i need to rest now and eat some raw eggs.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

update 2: atrophy's a bitch

so i have been getting hate mail about my blog and my lack of updates. well, perhaps hate mail is a bit strong, but i have had some disgruntled readers. (how do i know? i was told so both in person and on email.) yeah, so what if i have seen my readership plummet. what's your point? maybe i want it that way. that someecard says it all. i crack under pressure to be in a good mood and amusing. leave me alone. i have been very busy lately between work, doing laundry, sitting around feeling sorry myself, cleaning, listening to the 96.5FM "love songs after dark" jingle, and entertaining illusions of grandeur. but now it is november, so i guess i should get back in the swing of things.

i always say my blog is for strangers, as none of my in-person friends actually read my senseless babble. or so i thought. but then monday i got a call from my dear friend from college who i hadn't spoken with in way too long, maybe two years. in that conversation of catching up with what has happened in the past 2 years, the addition of biking into my life has been a major change worth, i suppose, some warrant? so i brought it up, to which he replies: "yes! this is the only thing i know about you because i read your blog sometimes. actually, i don't really understand anything you are writing about...but i like the pictures." .... i like the pictures too! but i like pictures and text in general. that probably dates back to my middle school comic book obsession with "the new mutants." if you are moderately well versed in marvel comics, they would be the predecessors to x-force, basically teenage x-men who are just getting their powers and don't know how to control them and have all these awkward adolescence moments... but i digress back to my friend who was actually reading blog..... i got kinda sad that my real human friend was trying to keep up with my life and didn't understand anything because of my bike jargon. sorry gabe! i guess the people who get my blog are people who think of me as "the bridget jones of the velodrome" (which i discovered someone referred to me as, while looking at a link that was coming to my blog) -- which is really pretty amusing in real-time, given my rant about bridget jones to my real life friends a couple years ago....past beth wouldn't be very happy with present beth's image. but what can you do. i would have much preferred a reference to illyana rasputin, but she was kind of deranged, although she was always my favorite new mutant character.

well, that was quite a digression from the title of this post: atrophy is a bitch.

i know the real reason people read here is to keep up to date on my quad measurements, which i have been slacking on posting. so, here is a review.
sept 25- 63cm
oct 2- 63cm

then i stopped biking.

oct 9- 63cm
oct 16- 61.75cm
oct 23- 61.50cm
oct 30- 60.5cm
can you believe that shit?

so i went to the gym saturday to try and correct this embarrassment and i realized what a weak ass i am. it is really kind of pathetic. now i am again shuffling along like an old lady and people at work keep giving me funny looks. the only good thing is, because my steps are so tiny, my pedometer count has been through the roof because it takes me twice as many steps to get anywhere.

you know what else? my jeans are fitting again. let me say this: MICHAEL BALL YOU DROPPED THE F*ING BALL! (PUN INTENDED!) my keirin cut jeans will likely never be made by rock & republic...and even if his nice PR guy sean contacts me again, my quads are back in the range of normal folks and probably don't need special jeans any longer.