Friday, December 10, 2010

December 9 #bikeschool Q1 - extended

 Bam!! Darryl layed down the first question of the night last night. I immediately started thinking in 140 characters. I answered simply that I would point to a blogpost on the subject by either @bikerly @lovingthebike or @egggman (me) and tell them to join. This is what I do when people ask me right? Then I started reading other (Better) answers and it got me to thinking.
If Someone asked me what is #bikeschool in any forrum other than twitter how would I answer??

#bikeschool is the #secretevilplan that wasn't... Or was it? One night at the cottage watching a fuzzy at best tv screen after a movie ended it was twitter time. My wife was checking in on facebook friends and plans for the next day. I sat back with the iPad and read a tweet from a newly followed wild man @bikerly to @lovingthebike. The tweet went something like: "so how is the #secretevilplan coming". I jumped in with a snide remark about it cant be so secret let me in. From there @bikerly started taking about filling water bottles with vodka. Back at home a week or so later I poked the pair on their #secretevil plan in jest and we started chatting about fictional possibilities.

One day still in summer @bikerly decided to stop the whole idea of the #secretevilplan joke and make it into something. His idea... you guessed it #bikeschool a hashtag linked to blog entries about life lessons learned by bike. The idea grew in dm's and e-mails between the 3 of us and then on August 10 2010 it was on a 3 linked blog post under the theme #bikeschool. Many other bloggers joined in quickly and lots of #bikeschool tweets happened through August and into September. The idea was fun and had worked but it was slowing down.

Blog posts #1: Bikerly Blog , LovingTheBike , OldSinglespeed

@bikerly decided it was time to kick up the heat and we chatted some more #secretevilplanB took shape. Based on some interesting twitter chat sessions he had seen he pitched the idea to us. Sounded great. We could have a couple people get together every week at 9pm EST Thurdays. We sent out some tweets and had a team blog post again Tuesday October 19th making another #secretevilplan #unsecret again.

I don't know what the others expected but the first week was amazing. @bikerly hosted and it was fun. I could not believe the amount of people who showed up. I learned alot quickly about people and their cycling habits. More though I just had a fun hour on twitter with new friends. Week 2 @lovingthebike was in charge and it was great again.

Week 3 was my turn and I was a little nervous about running out of inspiration. I wrote out some questions and let a few things pop off the collar and it was again a fun session. From there it is history. We have had guests ask questions we keep meeting new great friends. It is really becoming a fun community get together. It has now stretched as far as England and Australia although it wreaks havoc on their schedule due to time shift.

Week after week fun times. Stay tuned next week as @bikerly takes over again! And as @lovingthebike says "enjoy your ride!"

#notsosecretevolplanD really needs to be a #tweetup group ride somewhere sometime with ridiculous amounts of fun included!!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

I am warm!!

The daily discussion this week at my house has been about temperature. I then get to the office and people bombard me with "aren't you freezing?". One thing I have learned from winter sportswear vendors and Snowboarding is the art of containing heat. Layers work wonders (thin layers)! My main issue continues to be figuring out which layers to strip away as to not be too hot and sweaty. Today it was -13 C with a wind-chill of -18 and I wore a basic 3 layer outfit. In cold like this I never get rid of the wind break layer but augment the insulate and tight layers as necessary. The diagram above is my layering method. I am sure there are a million others like it. I have found that these methods crossed over between sports well. The hardest thing about cycling remains the leg outer layer as it has to remain low profile.

I am just rambling here so I will stop. the main thing is I am warm and comfortable on the frigid morning ride in. That is all for now... I'm out...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Winter pedals??

With the winter weather I have been trying to decide if I have chosen the right pedals. I started to wonder yesterday when I was riding in with my beat up old shimano spds and was a little stiff clipping in and out.
 
Today there was a little more snow on the ground and I had forgotten my cycling shoes at work yesterday thus being stuck riding in street shoes. I was amazingly comfortable slowing and stopping the winter fixed gear with no clipping or strapping mechanism engaged.
 I have a basic pair of flat pedals and toe straps. I was thinking for winter maybe switching out to flats is my best option just as a quick way of ditching the bike if needed for any reason. I am wondering what kind of pedals other riders use for winter riding? Am I just over-thinking again?
Thats all for now... Please post a comment if relevant. Thanks

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A change of season....

After blowing 6 spokes on my rear wheel of my fixed gear toy that already had 1 broken prior it was time to fix her up for riding. Instead of fixing it myself I left it in my office and Paul took it home and did the job including putting the new tire on to replace the one with the herniated sidewall.Yeah I need to take better care of my toys.
While he was doing this job Friday we were making our way north to the in-laws place where we encountered a nice taste of winter. There were snowball fights and the kids built a short lived fort in the soft snow. My wife gathered winter greens to decorate the house when we got home. We had an amazingly simple winter BBQ in the snow that was more fun to smell and cook than it was to eat. 
 Arriving home Sunday I decided I needed to make sure the winter bike was ready to ride as the other fixed gear was in Paul's garage still. I fixed up the bar tape that was in shambles while helping to decorate the house and make things red green and seasonal. I love the natural air freshener that the greens bring.
I rode in Monday and it was quite nice. We had only had a dusting here so it was not as big of a shock to ride in as it would have been further north. The areas north and west of us were hammered with snow and continue to get hammered now almost 3 days after the beginning of the storm. I know it will be here soon but with another snow last night we can still see the odd blade of grass sticking through.
 Michele was nice enough to point out a cool snowflake stencil yesterday so i spent about half an hour last night making it for my son. I expected he would tear it immediately but instead he was careful and just threw it in the air a few times to watch it fall like snow does.
This morning it was a little cooler out at -7 Celsius so I bundled up for the ride and kept nice and warm the whole ride in. I snapped this pic while stuck at a red light. Just a simple shot of the cockpit of my winter fixed gear playing in the snow.

I thought i had more to say but seemed a little tongue tied now that I am writing. I'm out... Until next time...

Thursday, December 2, 2010

#bikeschool episode 6 Q2 reference material

Please join #bikeschool at 9pm EST tonight for more information regarding this reference material. I will not plug this post until #bikeschool Q2.

egggman's Zazzle