Thursday, September 27, 2007

Whitefish, MO pictures from Chuck Barnes

Hi all - Chuck sent me the link to his pictures from Whitefish, MO today (the September ride!). Some great pics! Thanks for sharing Chuck.

Music while you ride?

Well, maybe not quite like this. But Patti Bills did pose an awesome discussion topic yesterday... thought I would help get a bit more buzz going around this one. If you listen to music when you ride, what's on your playlist?

I only used my iPod twice during my too-long ride in DV last year--on my hellacious journey up to Jubilee Pass, and on the last 15 miles of the ride. Somehow, having a distraction from the salt melting off my eyelashes and the incessant burning on my saddle made things a bit better. I listened to comedy--I had downloaded some stand-up tracks right before going to DV, and found that listening to someone tell me a story was actually an awesome way to keep pumping.

These days, my list has everything from Gipsy Kings to The Roots to Boston to Stevie Wonder to Irish pub songs to new rock artists I don't even know to....whatever I happen to be in the mood for, I guess.

But those doesn't work for everyone. What's on YOUR playlist? Posting of specific artists and song titles is greatly encouraged. :)

Monday, September 24, 2007


You heard it here first folks. The first all-in-one iPod, phone, web browser, insulin pump and CGM. Revolutionary...and probably the best idea that came out of our tour of Oceana County yesterday.

Turns out, someone already thought to ask Steve Jobs for his help in making this happen.

Things I learned yesterday:
1. No dog named Coolio stands a chance with this team.
2. If you happen to be a fast-acting carbohydrate, get outta Katie's way on ride day.
3. It's OK to 'borrow' water from outdoor faucets at tiny small-town churches on Sunday afternoons.
4. A hill in Oceana County is steeper, and thus allows one to ride faster, than coming down from Jubilee Pass in Death Valley. Scary.

Seriously, what a great ride with a great crew yesterday. I had a blast with everyone, but big thanks to Derek, Kevin, and Dawn for joining us - an awesome show of support from those guys whose official ride has already come and gone this year.

Only 26 more days until Death Valley!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Coolio gets squirted in the chops, we bike.

Well, despite the absence of our beloved Coachman, seven of us gathered at Montague Township Park for a generally very nice 60-65 miles (depending on who you ask) wander-ride up into Oceana County. My usual map fetish was thwarted by some unexpected gravel roads on my test-drive late last week, so Nicole, Katie, Steve, Patti, Kevin C, and Dawn had to rely on my verbal directions. I can report that everyone is accounted for, so I guess we did OK.

The weather was freakin' perfect, the roads were quiet, and the hills were, uh, hilly. Katie did accuse me of basing our route on finding the highest point in Oceana County. I regret that I have been unable to find out exactly where that is, but we did hit some nice verticals, and in a couple of weeks the view from the top of one of those will be a great fall canvas. We also found a killer downhill (WITHOUT a stop sign right at the bottom!) that gave a few folks all-time top speeds!

So, anyway, I'm now on a Nyquil-based diet, so look for a better report from Nicole in a couple of days.

Oh, and Coolio was a small terrier-thing that decided to chase us; my totally random aiming skills actually worked for a change, and he got a very surprising blob of water right in the face. I don't think I've ever seen a dog look quite so startled.

Off to bed...


A Quick Whitefish Report

Greetings form Sin City! Amidst all the other Vegas-related madness the biz center here in my :hotel" rnets computers for 15 bux an hour, so I'll make it brief. ( I know....I know....."get a laptop". Blah Blah blah.)

The Sept Whitefish Ride to Cure was a raging success, much like August! Everyone I spoke with during or after (and I spoke w/ a ton of 'em!) was positivly glowong about the route, the Ride, the folks............the whole shebang!

What a powerful deal this is! I saw tears and I saw smiles and I heard laughter and I heard cheers. So cool!

Your teammates Jeff, Joel and Chuck rode well...........all 3 did 100 miles + and Chuck did the whole 118. (Star Meadow was open again) They looked good @ dinner Friday night "representin' the mitten" in their team tees.

Jeremy and I were pretty much buried in the Bike Room from Wed lunch 'til 1:00 this morning. We were tryin' to raise the bar to remind everyone that West Michigan ain't nuthin' to mess with and the preliminary reports are that we succeeded. We both drove sag wagonms all day yesterday and aside from one endo-induced dead wheel and a buncha flats.......we had little to do.

The weather window was finely tuned just like the smoke issues of August. It was rainy and in the high 40's on Thursday, sunny and 70 on Friday, partly cloudy and about 68 yesterday and least @ 5:00 am which is as far as I can vouch for.....raining and cold again today!

I hope that today's ride was a blast.........someone post up and fill the rest of us in!

More later, gott aput more quarters in the hard drive!

Coach in Absentia, MC

Friday, September 21, 2007

Whitefish Report, Take 2 I am back in Big Sky Countyr again! zhard to belive that 'twas a mere 4 weks ago that we were here. It was hot and dry and @ the moment (10:45pm on Thursday) it's about 45 and rainy. It's been cold and rainy all day and "what to wear" has bene the topic of the day. Hopefully it'll be warmer and dryer on Sat!

Jeremy and I have been wroking in the bike Room since yesterday afternoon and it seems to be going well. People have told us that we're ahead of schedule and that the room and bike-pick-up process is more organized and efficient that in the past. That's good to hear 'cuz that's the 'em all that West Michigan ROCKS, right?

Your teammates Chuck, Joel and Jeff are havin' fun. They did a rainy little trail ride today 'cuz Jeff's bike took a scenic tour of the country instead of comin' stright here but it's here now so it'a all good.

I was asked to give the wrap-up "speech" at dinner tonight. I told folks that I envied anyone that was here for the first time............that I was jealous of the experience that they were about to have. A lot of you know what I mean, right?

Anyway...just wanted to give ya'll a heads up......(oh oh! "Ya'll" means that ive been hangin' w/ Tim St. Clair too much! ) I hope you guys have a great ride this Sunday.I'l be thinking ogf you and wishin' that I was riding wit'choo guys instead of flying from here to Lost Wages NV. Take care, keep riding!


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Next Team Ride...

Hey all -

We'll be riding up my way again this coming Sunday - start time will be NOON, get there a bit early for map distribution, etc.

We'll start from Montague Township Park (here's the inevitable map to the park) - the same place we started from in July - and we'll do a solid 60-65 miles, with a few of Oceana County's finest hills. I can't promise that the road will be marked this time, but y'all are pretty good at following directions, so I don't think you'll get lost. Most importantly, have a few $$ with you, as we'll stop at Twisters back in Montague for ice cream!

I'll have some extra water at the start, and I'll try to find a place to fill bottles along the way, too. Bring your favorite foods for both during the ride (I don't have a huge stash of old energy bars and gels, so be sure to have enough with you to keep yer legs pumpin' for 4-5 hours) and for "recovery munching" afterwards, in case the ice cream doesn't do the trick!

Here's my proposed route!

See you there!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Good Luck September Whitefish team!

Have fun! We know you will do great. Bring us back some pictures!

Good luck.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


That's a familiar mop of blond curls!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Team Ride Report, 09-17-07

A bee-yoo-ti-ful early autumn day, a great route (courtesy of my buddy Jim) and a good turn-out is the short story of yesterday's ride but as you might expect.........there's more!

15 members of JDRF's coolest team gathered @ Ada Park for the 11:00am start. (Well........actually 13 were there @ 11:00, but that's another story - right Cindy and Brenda?) We had a good showing from the HM/August Whitefish Team.......Kevin, Dawn, Derek, Cindy and Brenda, Jeff from this month's MT Ride and then Sarah, Ted, Matt, Kevin, John, Carmen, David and Rob from the DV squad. Oh......and me.

We headed south, right up the once-fearsome climb on Snow and waaayyyy south around Feeport and a few other way-sleepy little burgs out there in the hinterlands. The wind was in our faces at first and there was plenty of big hills but everyone rode well and we all made it back to the park for chips-n-salsa, cookies and such w/ a minimum of issues or whining. (Pretty much!)

It was great to see so many riders out w/ us who have already done their Ride! It's way cool that you guys were out /w your teammates, sharing stories and showing the way! The spirit of this team is awesome to behold!

The next Team Ride is this coming Sunday up in Derek's neck o' the woods. As I'll be in transit from Whitefish I've "deputized" him and Nicole and they are "large and in charge" of this week's ride. Watch for details, discussions and maps (lots and lots of maps!) from them soon!

On Wed. Jeff, Joel and Chuck leave for their Whitefish Ride. Keep them in your thoughts later this week. I know that everyone that was out there last month will be envious and every veteren on this team is jealous of the experience that we know they are about to have! (I'll be out there as well, along w/ Jeremy from the shop, doing the bike tech support.) No riding for me, but I'll file a report when I get to Las Vegas after the Ride.

As for you Death Vally-ers..............we leave in exactly one month!!!! Are you ready? Your bike too? Let's keep riding and fund-raising and finish the season strong!

Still some group fund-raising opportunities coming Cindy Aley for info on the Van Andel dates.

Don't forget Sarah's Wine-Tasting Bash too! Details soon!

I had a blast riding w/ some of you guys yesterday..............I've had a blast all season! You guys are the best.


Friday, September 14, 2007

OK, so, on the 23rd, whaddya want?

So, like, how many miles do ya want with yer hills? Do ya want an ice-cream stop? If I fall over, should it be into a ditch full of weeds, or would a nice grassy field do nicely?


Friday, September 7, 2007



Whassup Team!?!?!?!?!?!? NO one got nuthin' to say 'bout nuthin'? May I remind you that we are in the absolute heart of our Ride to Cure season?

That 21 of us enjoyed a profoundly moving and enjoyable experience in MT last month?!

That 3 more teammates (and yours truly) will be headin' out to Whitefish in a coupla weeks to do the same?!

That our ever-changing-but-always-awesome Death Valley squad is only 41 days away from climbin' on the big silver bird for the trip west?!

That our own Mary Schiedel is takin' over Julie's gig @ the office?!

That we have a Team Ride comin' up a week from Sunday?!

That the BANG Tour, Apple Cider, ODRAM and lotsa other cool rides are right 'round the corner?!

Let the chatter commence! Let there be maps and pictures and thinly disguised jokes at each other's expense!

Is anybody out there!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!