Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Midlife crisis job

If I ever get fed up working for the government sow, I know exactly what I'm going to do:

UPS Delivery By Bike! Salem, Oregon from nwduffer on Vimeo.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Surprise Jorge!

It's been a while since we checked in on Maria, the Healer of Santa Fe.  Last time everything seemed so wonderful, I was sure this match was made in heaven.  Oops, looks like I spoke too soon:

Oct 19

Last night I went to [the bar where Jorge works] to be surprise Jorge.  I didn’t get the wonderful warm welcome I usually do, he handed me a drink and said “here, I saw you coming.” 

Maybe Jorge wants to “talk on a deep level.” 

I asked him if he was okay and he seemed a little irritated.  Turned out he was just tired and had a stressful night, and everyone was coming to him for everything, he said people want too much from him sometimes. 

Doesn't she realize she wants too much from him too?  Something he isn't capable of delivering?

I need not take it personal, that’s ego.  It had nothing to do with me.  We drank a bottle of wine and talked for a few hours.  I was still feeling a little tension , the night before had been so amazing and beautiful and full of love, I guess I was a little disappointed because I was so looking forward to a forever continuance of that loving night that he told me he loves me.  I know we are getting back to that again now I just need to let that night go, and focus on new beginnings and continuing and remembering his and my loving words and feelings for each other, he loves me, this is the truth, this is what I need to always remember and feel, and he the same for me.

Next time:
    Maria responds in the only way she knows how.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


Winter weather has finally arrived in Salt Lake City.  That means it’s time to swap my skinny tires for skinny skis.  But first I needed an afternoon on some fat tubes.  Hooptedoodle style.
Hooptedoodle style

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Cyclocross regression

Weber Fairgrounds1

It’s a beautiful, sunny December afternoon here in Salt Lake City.  I’m sitting here in bed with a clogged nose and gnarly cough instead of racing the final cyclocross race of the series at the Andy Ballard Equestrian Center.  Lately the weather’s been so nice, in fact, that I haven’t been wishing I was sliding through the woods on skinny skis instead of skinny tires during every race. 

Since I’m not racing today I figured I would do something I enjoy equally well.  You guessed it; I’m spending the afternoon doing regression analysis.  First I plotted my finishing place in each of the five cyclocross races I’ve done this season:

As you can see, the data indicate that I have clearly improved over the course of the season, but they also indicate a leveling off of my progress, as is evident by the 12th place finish the data predict for me if I had shown up for race number 11 today.  Me and steve1

Rather than get discouraged by these data, or write them off as an indicator of my level of enthusiasm for cyclocross this year, I next plotted the number of riders I finished in front of in each of my first four races.  I deemed race number 10 to be an outlier because I had a mechanical during the race (i.e. my handlebars slipped downward every time I rode on the hoods, then slipped back upwards when I shifted my hands to the drops.  I stopped to fix them after two laps, and after several minutes spent frantically searching for someone to loan me a multi-tool, I managed to tighten them in the downward position, so that even when I was on the hoods I felt like was riding in an aerodynamic tuck.  This, of course, clearly explains why I was able to ride fast enough to catch two competitors before the end of the race and not finish last.):

I must admit I find the upward trend of these data much more encouraging.  And look at that coefficient of variation—a whopping 0.85!  That’s pretty exciting, but what troubles me about these data is that they predict I would have finished in front 10 riders in race number 11 today.  Do the math if you must, but can you believe that?  Ten riders!?! The data don’t lie.  If, like last week, only 14 riders showed up to race in the ‘A’ Category, I would have finished in fourth place. 

Finishing fourth in a cyclocross race requires commitment.  It requires discipline.  It requires training, skills, desire.   It requires knowing how to get back on my bike after every barrier without hopping around like a fool.  No way.  I’m not ready to finish in fourth place. 

Sheesh.  It’s a good thing I stayed home today.