Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Looking for a DD Before Noon

I would have loved to have sat around this evening sipping a Guinness. Unfortunately, that’s not in the cards anymore. I have to say I sort of miss the days of my early twenties when I could hang out with my friends and drink all day. Yes, all day. There was a bar in Dayton, Ohio called McGuffy’s, pretty close to where I worked, that opened at 6:00 am on St. Patrick’s Day. I worked midnight shift, so after riding around on my bike all night, it worked out well.

Tomorrow is supposed to be a very nice day. Not sure how I can sneak a ride in, since the daughter has ice skating lessons. Certainly want to go, though.

I’m waiting for the trails to dry out. My regular ride is Little Bennet Park in Montgomery County, which happens to be a regular equestrian destination, and the trails don’t hold up well when they’re wet. Good riding though. Not much longer…

Monday, March 9, 2009

Under the Gun

I’ve been under the gun lately. I’ve had a big deadline looming at work and my little girl has a lot to do and get to. On top of that, the weather’s been great, so I don’t have any excuses for doing the stuff on the house and in the yard that I’ve been putting off. So. The past week was pretty much all focused on trying to keep my life from going out of control. I’m sure everyone feels like that sometimes. I tell myself that I can’t control everything going on, and I have to put a priority level on things, or there will be consequences. Well, sometimes my self just doesn’t listen. That’s when my wife usually makes a subtle comment like, “Weren’t you going to go for a ride today?”

Riding is often like therapy for me, only my health insurance won’t cover my maintenance costs. (They keep denying my claims for bike parts.) I get time to work through my thoughts, followed by a couple excruciating climbs combined with a few good downhill runs. I can usually tell when I’ve worked things through when I start thinking about how much snot I might have on my jersey from the last snot rocket.

Sometimes I think it’s the chance to think that I like about riding, sometimes it’s the absence of thought. How great is it to not worry about anything. Not the pressures from work, not pressures from family, not even the stuff you have to do when you’re done with the ride. Your only concern is how much snot is on your jersey. And it’s going to get washed anyway.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Snow Day

After years of bouncing around from city to city, I wound up working in the Washington, DC area. Getting used to the area took a while. There is an air of self-importance about many people in and around DC. Don’t get me wrong… I have met a lot of nice people. I’ve also met a lot of other types. This post isn’t about the people, that’s just me rambling a bit. I took a job outside of DC a little while back, which was a blessing. Today, I was presented with a little gift. A snow day.

We got hit with a decent sized winter storm last night as March came roaring in. With it, it dumped a bunch of snow and my office was closed. I can’t even begin to express my disappointment. I think the best part of the deal was that it happened on a Monday. It’s a free three-day weekend. So, I kept my little girl, the Newtette, home with me and we got to play outside, followed by some shoveling of the driveway. A friend of mine had to leave town on short notice, and after checking his wife was OK on the driveway front, I realized I had a good day of general hanging-out ahead of me.

When you’re pushing 40 and have a family, the snow day is a bit different than it used to be. Sleeping in till noon isn’t an option when you have a living, breathing alarm clock living in your home. Likewise, you are limited to what you watch on TV during your free time. (A word of advice: The Big Lebowski has too many F-bombs in it to make it even remotely plausible for a family snow day.) What you can do though, is try to describe what would be an otherwise mundane day in a way that’s interesting to other people. Certainly not as entertaining as the Coen brothers classic, but it helps to get the brain cells firing.