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Easy rider it isn’t.

Its called “Right of way”, asshole.

No one knows how to drive these days.

And I am not just talking about turning the wheel and pushing the pedals, you could hook electrodes to a dead earthworm and he get push the pedal enough to get you a ticket. (Plus you would probably get hit with the “No seatbelt” ticket too. They are so small, it would totally slip your mind.)

I am talking about those pesky little nitpicking annoyances that those of us who are just being assholes like to call THE FUCKING TRAFFIC LAWS.

You know, silly concepts like right of way, signalling a lane change and driving in the bike lane.

I swear, riding my bike to work has been an interesting mix of blessing and curse.

On the one hand, its a great way to get a morning and afternoon workout in my efforts to change the shape I am in. (Mainly from round into something that looks better.)

However, as I watch my fellow motorists zooming past me, a couple of things are abundantly clear.

  • The shittiest driver’s on the road have the nicest or the crappiest cars. Your high end Mercedes drivers are the most clueless d-bags on the road. Crappy cars are known for erratic driving. no look lane changes and right turns are their stock in trade.
  • Motorcyclists scream the loudest about how everyone doesn’t look out for them, but they look out for NO ONE. An even 50% of observed motorcycles on my daily trek speed, do NOT use turn signals, accelerate 3-4 times faster than everyone else and weave in and out of traffic. I am stunned they are not dropping like flies on an hourly basis.

On the good side of things, and we all know how I love the positive side of things, the ride to work was a great one.

Long enough to get a workout, not so long I am destroyed when I get there.

Hoping to ride a 100 mile race next month, so I need the work out.

But enough about me.

I did see a friend of sorts on my way.

Pauline, my latest homeless meth-head friend, happened to be walking down the street as I was riding to work.

Meth, it seems, does not have a bed time.

I waved and shouted her name and she just looked blankly at me, like she didn’t recognize me.

And she probably didn’t. Hard core drug use is a bitch on the short-term memory.

The morning ride was vastly different from the afternoon ride.

Morning ride starts just before sunup. The streets are deserted except for those with the really shitty commute. (Which was me for a long time.)

Its cool out, slight breeze, and more than enough light to see, but I use my bike lights anyway, more for them to see me than for me to see the road.

The afternoon ride is busy. Lots of cars on the road. Its hot and real humid out, so the sweat starts quickly and truly shocks me with the quantity.

But its a good ride, mainly flat, a few small hills, but nothing even approaching hard.

Had an interesting encounter on the ride home.

Pulled up to a stoplight and waited at the curb for the light to change.

There is a massive street dude standing there, truly a beast of a human being with all the earmarks of the thug life, up to and including facial tattoos.

His shirt print is a really interesting design, kind of an urban cityscape, but with colorful air brushing and some sci fi imagery mixed in.

And then I realized I was staring.

And then I realized he was staring at me, staring at him.

Among the thug world, mono a mono stare downs can get you shot. The best course of action its to change the setting.

“I like that shirt.”

He looks confused, and pulls out his earbuds. He didn’t hear me.

“What?”

“I like that print.”

And just like that, the moment is defused.

A huge grin spreads across his face.

“Its my design. I’m the artist.”

“You are a talented human-being.”

Andre and I talk for a good twenty minutes.

Awesome dude. Grew up in a really bad section of town, had an uncle who wanted to keep him out of trouble, so he taught him to draw when he was little. It worked, sort of.

But uncle died recently and left Andre a 4 color silk screen press.

And Andre is doing 4 color shirts, then doing further painting on them to create some truly incredible stuff. He showed me picks on his phone of a dozen shirts he has done. He sells them for $40. Doing well, he says.

The light has changed a number of times, and I am finally ready to go.

The white walk signal comes up and Andre steps off the curb, heading in the same direction.

And a car tries to turn right with no signal, against the light.

Had I jackrabbited, he might have clipped me.

Andre smacks the hood with his fist and the driver looks terrified and backs up.

As I ride off, I wonder if I can talk Andre into doing the daily ride with me.

Because people drive like shit.

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Posted by on July 24, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Occupy some soap, hippie.

We all have a little masochist in us.

It all depends on what your particular choice of whip is.

I currently have a thing going with an odd combination of Judo and popcorn.

Long story, one beats you up from the outside, the other from deep inside your bowels.

But this isn’t about me.

This is the story of Icarus and Beyonce.

You may ask why I chose those names.

Because I have been sitting next to them for the last half hour and I can think of no better names for them.

Icarus is a suffering artist.

However, lets adjust our definitions of suffering, shall we?

The iPhone 5S on the table in front of him is in a case that I know for a fact costs about $200.

Sitting next to them is a keyring with a Mercedes smart key.

And he is whining like a bitch in heat non-stop about how his parents don’t take him seriously.

He appears to be in his late 20’s.

You figure if they aren’t going to take him serious by now, give it up, they aren’t going to.

Like a set of fake wings, this no real ambition, no talent, overly entitled little shit is expecting to fuck around for his whole life, then magically wake up some morning and the world will prostrate itself at his feet in recognition of…what? (Ok, so the Icarus imagery is pretty weak, but it remains a solid shitty nickname, I hate him already.)

Good question, lets get back to that later.

And then theres Beyonce.

She has ridiculously high maintenance bitch written all over her.

And, judging by her self-absorbed ramblings the entire time Ikarus has been going thru his period, it hasn’t pulled her away from her true vocation, worshiping herself.

She may even be more talented than the real Beyonce, the original no-talent golden calf the media has been shoving down our throats ever since she fired the girls in Destiny’s Child for not being named Beyonce.

Wow. Even I am impressed by the pissy angst in that little sentence.

Icarus is beginning to rub off on me.

I need to get out of here before Beyonce rubs off on me.

Add her diva attitude to my mouth and someone would kill me inside of an hour.

I am enough of an ass, I don’t need the help.

Back to the kids.

I am beginning to see a theme to the bitching.

As near as I can figure, it has something to do with corporations keeping him from getting a gallery show for his art.

Occupy Starbucks.

Christ, not this shit again, like this couple wasn’t worthless enough.

As you may be able to tell if you’ve been paying attention, I don’t view the Occupy movement with any sort of respect.

Mainly because I don’t respect that “unwashed welfare takes a holiday”.

But that is a story for another time.

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Cell phone wars and bike rides.

The war is over.

Casualties were high, but the outcome is good.

I ended up deciding on the iPhone 5C.

It has the polycarbonate shell, but still has a serious heft to it that keeps it from feeling cheap.

And compared to that rotten piece of shit I had, it works like a goddam dream.

I had no problems with my iPhone 4S, so the 5C being faster, bigger screen and better overall, it is a perfect fit.

My disappointment at the shitty track record of the Galaxy 4S is big.

Tech support is shit, so is Sprint tech support by the way, and they could never get two separate units fully up and running.

The iPhone? Turn it on, that is all that was needed.

Apple, evil empire that it is, with pretty serious human rights manufacturing issues, but they know their shit, I will give them that.

When it comes down to it, your cell phone should be an afterthought, a background thought, let you check your stuff and never be the problem.

I spend a lot of time Facebooking, texting, emailing, gaming… etc.

And with what they cost, both the phone and the data/talk/text plans, the stupid things had better work.

I spent 3 days, shleping back and forth to the Sprint store. (Including my mistaken journey to the most poorly run Sprint store I have ever seen and will never go back to.)

That is time that I will never get back.

The phone war has aged me, hardened me, made me deal with a side of myself I didn’t like.

But its over now, and I am home.

 

Decided a celebratory bike ride was in order.

The LA River is lined with bike paths.

We (No details here) started at the LA River Center and Gardens in Glendale.

This is a hidden cool place on a side street in what appeared to be a shitty section of Glendale.

Beautiful place that was closed when we got there.

The gates, however, were open, so we wandered around for a few.

The solitude was nice.

Time for the bike ride.

Getting to the LA River was a little frightening.

Major road construction going on in Glendale right now. (We will be kind and ignore the fact that I was in this area a year ago for a bike race and this section was torn up then too.)

Once we got to the river, the bike path is stunning.

The ride is lined with little pocket parks on the left, and what appears to be wetlands in the middle of the LA River on the right.

Some of the sections have 3-4 story trees growing, so much more than you would expect.

The course of the ride is from a magazine article from 2009.

There is a stop during the first hour where you leave the LA River and trek east for a quarter mile and visit an art gallery.

An art gallery that doesn’t exist anymore.

Evidently, 2009 was a long time ago.

Thats ok, this is a really artsy, elitist section of pretentiousness, so there is always another crappy gallery to take its place.

Back on the bike path, the knot in my ass brought on by the visit to the land of “Rich folk pretending their no” begins to fade.

I love bicycling, its like a massage for the soul, complete with happy ending.

The halfway point is a stop at a high end bakery for lunch.

Baked goods are one of the concrete pieces of evidence that there is a God.

Pastries, coffee, gourmet grilled cheese, lunch was stunning.

The ride back started off well, then quickly turned to shit.

A broken spoke puts a wobble in your wheel that is amazing mainly because the wheel keeps turning even with about a 3 inch wobble.

We made it back and I got my bike to the shop, where an angry Belgian will return it to perfect condition.

Life is better.

 
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Posted by on October 21, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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