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2004-12-06 - Grizzly Peak Scout
I went on a scouting ride this weekend. The route has alot of potential. I need to find a new entry point and check out the diner in Farwell/Sonol before I try to do it with a group.

Route & Comments
I80NE to Bucanan/Marin Exit (near Berkley/Albany)
Relatively easy ride. Good meeting place in front of park.
Marin Ave East to Grizzly Peak Blvd
Too steep uphill four way stops. Baaad for a group ride.
Grizzly Peak Blvd South Merges with Skyline Blvd
Pretty. Interesting twisties and a few odd intersections.
Skyline Blvd South to Redwood Road
More Pretty. Poorly maintained asphalt road.
Redwood Road East South to I580
Road is graded with wide grooves in the direction of travel. Icky to ride on. Beautiful view of San Leandro Reservoir.
I580 East to Palomares Rd
Palomares Rd South to Niles Canyon Rd
Road is nice, new and well kept, but had slippery scree in the center of each lane.
Niles Canyon Rd East through Farwell/Sonol to I680
Nice Road
I680 North to I580
I580 East to I80
I80 Home

2004-11-19 - WYSIWYE(at)
After a week of slowly nibbling at the dark dark chocolate bar I got at Rainbow Grocery, the herseys chocolates I got to share with my work group for a "Yay! We're not getting canned, just getting our salaries cut" treat taste like flavored wax.

It is embarrassing to shamelessly hit on someone then learn that they are spoken for. I'm told it is just plain rude to ask to be put on the waiting list.

2004-11-15 - BBQ Ride
Nice four day weekend with lots of things I'm not supposed to post about. Other wonderful things I'm not sure if I should post about or not.

I got to be AlphaBiker for a few hours yesterday. It is not as scary as I thought. I think so long as I get to scout out the route beforehand, I'll enjoy doin' more leading. The group I rallied to the Union Point Resort (dive) easily outnumbered the non-queer folks there. One unsuspecting guy sat himself down in the last seat at a table of five of us. I'm still not sure if he figured us out.

Always lots of pokémon. It took me about three weeks and 170 hatchings to get a `mon that I think there should be a 1/50 chance of getting. `course now I understand one hard lesson of genetic manipulation; there are alot of leftovers from the process that I don't know what I'm going to do with. Too bad there is no way to set them outside in a cardboard box labeled "free pokémon to good homes." If they were edible I could sell them at the farmers' market. "Today Special: Larb `Mon"

It is good that my obsession is relatively cheap and safe. The rationalization also comes easily.

2004-11-03 - Signs
The days started getting shorter. I started craving fish. Most days since I have had fish for one meal each day.

Two weeks ago I craved baked bologna salad sandwiches aka gooey buns. I made a double batch (sixteen buns) and tore through them in less than a week.

I craved mushroom pie on Monday. I made a huge 13" pie and tore through it.

This morning while considering lunch, I have the inexplicable urge for more gooey buns.

Powers help me. This cannot be good.

2004-11-01 - Pie
I am hungry for mushroom pie. It takes a few hours to prepare, and I can't get good fresh mushrooms `til the farmers' market on Wednesday. The urge is strong and I may just do it tonight anyway. Hmmm...and dinner rolls with lots of high fat imported butter... yeah... too bad I don't care for wine, `cause that sounds like a good thing to go with it.

2004-10-28 - Bigger Both
I remembered last night that in January I measured myself for my
Roadcrafter suit. I think was either 42" or 44" at both the widest place across my belly and widest place across my chest. I got a 46 Long suit to accommodate a few layers underneath. I just measured both again and I am (without suckin' it in) 45" at the belly and 48" at the chest. Looks like yesterday's observations were correct.

Just for the sake of record I'd like to measure elsewhere so I can see where the thickness is showin' up. Is there anywhere else I should be measuring besides the widest point of my bicep? (15") I figure I should do shoulders somehow, but don't know where to measure.

2004-10-27 - Man Mass
In the last few months, I've been getting lots of complements concerning my build. I've also noticed lately that while my t-shirts don't seem tight, they also won't stay tucked in anymore. Then they ride up. I am hoping that I'm coming into the middle age "man mass" that men get around 40 years old. While I can't peg down the specifics, it seems that they are thicker about the back, shoulders and neck. Heaven forbid I step on a scale and find out I'm just getting fat.

When I get "tall" sizes via mail order they are also "big." I'd like some shirts with longer sleeves and tails, but no additional girth.
Sister Betty recommends just taking the big and tall shirts to a taylor who will take in the sides. Does anyone else have any advice about finding longer shirts?

2004-10-26 - Time Travel
All in all I had a great trip to Seattle this weekend. After not having flown anywhere for a couple years, I forgot how annoying airports are. I would much, much rather stay closer to home and just do roadtrips on the bike.

When I consider that it takes about an hour to get to the airport and alomost another hour and a half before the plane takes off, the actual flight, then the baggage claim and commute to the destination on the other end any trip is easily five hours. I can almost ride to Palm Springs or Los Angeles in that time, and have a much, much more enjoyable time. Me thinks I will avoid future plane trips unless there is something very special on the other end.

2004-10-24 - Suess Mission Katonjutsu
A riddle I've found that I can't quite surmise
Is Pat the bearcat and the old man of Drize.
One can sit on the top of prickly cacti
The other cannot, but I can't figure why

I have completed the weekend's primary main objective.
Someday I will collect all the Chinpokomon!
Then, I will become the Royal Crown Chinpokomaster
and fight the evil power that will reveal itself
once all the Chinpokomon are collected!
Oha!
Hitch nee! San chi! Hitch nee! San chi!

I have found the secret weaknesses of the Big Biker Bear. He tried to flip me, but somehow ended up flat on his back in the grass with me on top. Thankfully, he believes I ended up on top out of sheer dumb luck, and his husband, NutBrown Biker Bear, did not see how I accomplished this. I can only hope my gotonpo is strong enough to conceal my true nature. Mu fu fu fu fu!

2004-10-21 - Wet trap
We got a big shipment from Dell yesterday at work. 80some big PC and monitor boxes. I think my right trap is sprained right along the top. Ouch it hurts. Ouch it hurts. Ouch it hurts.

Gooey Buns were great last night. I think I put to many onions in the grind in relation to the bologna and made the mix too "wet" The top bun crisped up nicely, the bottom was oh so very soggy. I had one for breakfast right from the fridge. It was heavenly.

2004-10-20 - None in the Oven
I have a sudden craving for baked bologna salad sandwiches. Guess I'll be stopping by the deli, hauling out the meat grinder and fireing up the oven tonight.

2004-10-19 - MUNI Commute
I made this ditty on my way home last night.

Until this car leaves
Consequent cars cannot come
One ass halts us all

Note the clever alliteration in the second line and strong vowel sounds in the third. I am very proud.

2004-10-18 - Pokéyentl
I spent the bulk of the weekend doing tedious pokémon things and enjoying the new tivo DVR I set up Friday evening.

My only tivo regret so far is I didn't think to record the Farscape miniseries. grrr... I am amazed by how many times shows I enjoy are aired. I had no idea.

The pokémon chores are shaping up slowly but surely for next weekend. I spent the bulk of the weekend being pokéyentl and producing a couple of baby `mon for every species that any given kid might want. I also went to great lengths to breed special abilities into them--`cause, really, any pink egg shaped dreadlocked`mon raised by a big red whiskered gay guy should know the "aromatherapy" move. I wish there was a "jungle red" move for clawed creatures...or a move called "rim shot" for
lickitung.

From what I can tell from Nintendo's reports, the event in Seattle will be much more than I expected. I will do my level best to get a picture of John next to a huge inflatable exploud. I wonder what one has to do to be considered one of the "qualified Trainers" in the Union Room.

2004-10-14 - Crunch and Fold
I do believe that wash & fold is cheaper than actually doing laundry at the laundromat. Once you figure the cost to run the machines, the detergent, fabric softener etc it seems to come pretty close. I will not actually crunch the numbers as I think from now on I will just do wash & fold.

2004-10-13 - Admissions
I am somtimes untactful and insensitive. There are also plenty of other reasons to not like me. I'm OK with that. Really. (innocent sheepish grin)
Feel free to let me know rather than stew over it. Really, it will do you good.

2004-10-12 - Coasting
Last week I had "the talk" with my boss. I probably would have ducked out and done my best to coast along without the talk had she not started talking re-org. She wanted to put me toward the top of the food chain, be responsible for more and also give me minions to do the actual work. After sleeping on it, I came back and told her I thought the re-org was a good idea for the organization, but that I wasn't the guy to be at the top. I cited some specific example of really good work I've done on my own or for others, and where I've floundered while trying to get other folks to do what I need them to. I think I got across the ideas that I was hoping to. That I am an asset to the organization, just not in the way she was wanting me to be. We shall see how it all shakes out in the end. I'll be happy to keep a full time job, even if it means getting knocked down a peg (but hopefully not two). Just so long as I don't continue to be put into management roles that I hate, I'll try to be cheerful about the deal.

Coasting through most of the rest of life right now. With the shortening days come a difference in sleep patterns and an odd craving for fish at least once a day and something salty and cheesy before bed.

La La La. Nothing substantial to write about. Just trying to get back in the habit.

2004-10-06 - Leaving on a Jet Plane
How deep is my obsession? I just paid around $200USD to buy a IRL airline ticket to go to Seattle and collect an electronic "Aurora Ticket" to the fictional "Birth Island." Given, there are very desireable mythical beasts waiting for my arrival at both destinations. The motivations still seem less than rational.

This will be the first time I've been on an airplane since I got my motorcycle.

2004-10-05 - Pavement Pilot
I'm suprised by how much I'm thinking about Sky Captain when I'm out riding with
Tainn. I think about how it seems like bikers dressed like pilots when motorcycles were a new thing, and I wonder when the leather got black. I wonder if the early bikers had the same stuff running through their heads that I do. The soft buzz of the engine, the wind, the illusion of freedom of flight.

I've never been able to tap into the whole greasy biker/easy rider/village people thing. While I admit that the whole look is utterly universal and honed down to a fine science of consistnecy, it all seems so fabricated. The black, skulls, iron crosses and flames make no more sense to me than school girls rolling up their shirts to look like Brittney. Well, maybe flames make you go faster, but I still don't get the rest.

If you were hoping there is a point to this, I don't believe there is. I'm just wondering if I'm missing something by not trying to be the same black clad-loner-outlaw-rebel-outsider it seems everyone else is.

2004-09-30 - -
Days get short. Must resist instinct to migrate to South Island. Must. Resist.

2004-09-27 - Ride the Pig
While carrying my new Invader Zim DVD's home from work this evening in a conspicuous airtight black box, I pretended I was a slick yet paranoid alien invader bent on world domination. What could be more fun?

Why, going to the grocery store to get supplies for dinner with said airtight case handcuffed to my person.

MuFuFuFu!

I am so blessed to be so easily amused.

2004-09-24 - Cinder-ella
I attended a cigar party last night. All night long I was trying not to stare at the 6'3" furry front and back thick muscled sex beast that everyone was swooning over. I very intentionally looked away from him when he bumped into the emergency exit and all the lights came on and he stood there blushing in all his big beefy glory. I very intentionally didn't look at him when he seemlingly kept looking to see if I was looking the rest of the evening. It seems he was just looking for the sake of looking and finially cut me off at the pass, reached out and very intentionally rubbed my belly. We ended up hitting it off quite well and I drove him home.

I can't seem to get past that of all the guys there drooling over him, he grabbed me. I also can't get over how incredibly good looking he is. Sweet natured too it seems. Now I must decide if I want to contact him through mutual friends. Hmmmm.

Oh, and I caught Kangaskhan yesterday and completed my regional pokédex. I am the pokémon master. I've been suprisingly sucessfull in choosing egg bearing couples and can reproduce just about any non-legendary `mon any of you'al might need.

2004-09-21 - Pokéhunter
Only three left. They are clever and slippery little bastards. I hate the Safari Zone.

Chansey
Kangaskan
ElectaBuzz
Safari Zone
Area 2
Safari Zone
Area 1
Fire Red
Power Plant

I WILL have them. I will have them ALL.

2004-09-20 - Bay Sky Fly
One of the factors in my recent "moving from San Francisco" crisis was that I didn't get the usual feel of coming home at the end of my three week roadtrip in August. I am happy to report that the coming home feeling has returned with full effect. Crossing over the bridge last night after spending the day riding in the East Bay with
John & Joe was as wonderful as ever. San Francisco sure is pretty.

We rode over to the Arlen-Ness shop in Dublin for an open house to show off the final assembly of their newest entry for the Discovery channel Biker Buildoff show. The bike wasn't to my tastes, but fortunately many of the spectators were.

We had dinner in Dublin and stayed to watch Sky Captain in the iMax theater there. We wrote home after dark in the cool clear air. Joe and my opposing engines alone sound like single prop planes. Together they create a harmonic that sounds like a dual prop plane. Good thing I was with them on the way home, otherwise I likely would have rode home like a bat out of hell pretending to be Sky Captain.

2004-09-14 - Obsessmon
Those who don't have a finger on the pulse of preadolescent culture may not realize I have been silent because
Fire Red/Leaf Green was released last Wednesday.

League Championship in 29 hours and 12 minutes
Currently 135 Obtained/144 Seen/150 Possible

Must have them all. (And also sleep and eat.)

2004-09-08 - Badger Flat
I could write a big report on my trip to Badger Flat this weekend. I set Lenny on fire. Really, isn't that enough said?

2004-09-08 - Front and Center.
I have decided to stay with my job--for awhile longer anyway. During the last week, I have met a half dozen people who are either quitting their jobs and moving to San Francisco because this is where they want to be, or have recently lost their job and are trying to make ends meet. It seems very foolish to throw away what I have when I have no idea what else I'd want.

2004-09-01 - Update State
I've updated my United States travel map to include my recent
roadtrip.

Take a look.

2004-08-31 - Stage Left
I think I may quit my job. My workload has increased to the point where I don't believe I can do it all, let alone do it all well. I will make some calls,formulate an exit strategy and make a decision by next week. I will most likely need to leave San Francisco.

I hate that I feel like I'm failing, but I don't see anything further ahead on this path but more hurt, disappointment and failure.

No needs for consolation. I feel very relieved to come to this breaking point.

2004-08-27 - Rodecorated
Cardinal Camping Rule #6: Never leave food in your tent.
If I always followed the rules, I'd rarely have good stories.

I woke up in the wee hours of the morning at Sturgis to find that all the other bikers were still firmly tucked in. Some alone, some in pairs, none that looked like they were about to stop snoring and hop up for breakfast. Being the growing boy that I am, I didn't think I should wait around for a healthy breakfast. I popped back into my tent and grabbed my loaf of Safeway cracked wheat bread with the intention of making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. The loaf of bread seemed lighter than hearty growing boy whole wheat should, and on closer inspection I noticed the loaf had been eaten out from the middle, through a small rodent sized hole chewed in the side of the bread bag. Not entirely unlike the new small rodent sized hole chewed in the side of my tent. Bastards.

After a quick search through my tent for any lingering guests, I grabbed the heaviest thing I had to block the hole. Being on a very long roadtrip and being a responsible, somewhat mechanically inclined motorist I had planned to change my oil out on the open road. Being a fussy BMW riding gayboy, I brought along four quarts of my own fancy gourmet BMW oil. Heaven forbid
Tainn have to consume generic motor oil. My rodent blocking device consisted of the four quarts of quality BMW motoroil wrapped in a heavy plastic bag and then bound together with sturdy duct tape for easier packing and handling. That should keep those free (cracked wheat) loafers out.

The next day after a squall of hail, I excused myself from the company of two "cuter than speckled puppy" men from Pensacola and returned to my tent to see how well the newly re-engineered guest door stood up to the rain. I was upset to find a small pool of tea colored water next to the portal, and started sopping it up with my newly soiled t-shirt (yes, those specked puppy men were responsible). To my disgust, the water was thick slimy and...ˇd'oh! oily. I flipped over my pricey german rodent barrier to find that the critter had not only chewed through the duct tape and heavy plastic, but had taken one small nip at a quart before deciding that pricey german motor oil did not agree with his pallet.

Now in possession of oily hands, oily (and otherwise soiled) shirt, and slowly leaking pricey german motoroil, I opted to change Tainn's oil at the muddy post-squall campground. I also found a rather large rock to block the guest door that on subsequent inspections, showed no sign of rodent dining.

At this point a better writer might come up with a nice moral or clever play on words to sum things up. Me, I'll just wash, waterproof and patch up my tent and let its scar speak for itself.

2004-08-25 - Paper Change
I kept a little paper journal recording bullet-style thoughts about various things on my journey. Like waves on the shore, many of them have left their impression on me and have gone away. Most don't have enough substance left for me that I want to copy them here. Here are a few that I'm still stuck on.
Love is not something one deserves.
Love cannot be earned.
Love comes purely through grace, and even then one has to accept it.
Folks who give love without abandon seem to have plenty more on hand.

When
BikerBearMark questions me in a formulaic manner about the "best" or "most memorable" things, it reminds me of my personal quest to sort down to the root of things and find out what really matters to me. Some of my answers to Mark surprise me. My lack of answers also surprise me. I'm still not sure what to do about that.

My big thought for the journey:
You are somewhere you don't want to be, but don't know where you want to go. What do you do?
* Stay put.
* Go somewhere/anywhere else.
* Change the place you're in.
* Change yourself.
* Change your mind.

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