Pantone Orange 021 C

Pantone Orange 021 C, originally uploaded by erokComā„¢.


I have moved my blogging space

Hi Everyone,

I have switched from to and I am now blogging at Please updates your links accordingly. This page will remain but I have transferred all of this information over. I am still working on the look of the new page and getting everything configured. It will help me have a more versatile page and will be better.

Thanks to all who look here and read these posts. It sure makes me feel good.

Best regards,


Left alone I hit myself with a stone…

I have liked the White Stripes for sometime. I think Jack White has a guitar tone that will inspire young boys(and girls) for years to come. Sort of a modern day Stevie Ray Vaughn in that respect. Add the primal drumming of Meg White and you really got somethin’.

When Icky Thump came out I listened a bit and the disk migrated away. I found it again the other day and have been listening to it quite a bit. Especially the middle part of the album and these four songs:

Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn
St. Andrew (This Battle Is In The Air)
Little Cream Soda
Rag And Bone

Especially the St Andrew song which is bizarre and tape loopy and just a pleasure to listen to.

I highly recommend this album and it will be some time before I let it slip from rotation again. Here is the official video of the lead track – it’s a scorcher…

Four months in

YTD – 870.62
MTD – 131.46
Friday – 16.66

I “celebrated” four months of riding with a cold, hard ride to Corydon Pike via Budd/Highwater lane. I reviewed Tim’s map of this ride and decided I liked how he dealt with the wacky intersection of Hwy 111 and Indiana 62. He went around it. Me too, and I liked the result. One of the surprising things that eluded me in four months of riding was a dog chase. Granted, that was fine by me but considering the amount of Indiana back roads I ride it’s surprising. I panted to the top of the first rise on Budd Road and there it was – some sort of Husky looking dog who came haul-assin’ out into the street to give chase. I dropped gears, stood up, and stomped it. I am pleased to report that I quickly lost his interest. I actually saw another one about a mile later that looked the same. It wisely yielded to its still marked electric fence.

This ride can be a tough one for an hour and I was definitely feeling the impact of the cold and the wind. From Highwater Road to the Edwardsville climb is a slow steady climb and my speed fell into the range of 11-12 mph. It is a little daunting that the climb begins around 7 miles in and I thinking – I’m already a little tired and it’s all in front of me.

I made it up and around just fine. As I descended I even went into the drop portion of the handlebars to see if I could get some of the wind out of my eyes. I find it hard to keep my eyes from watering and I even wear glasses. I had gotten pretty hot by the time I reached the top of the hill, but the ridge line ride cooled me back down and I never recovered any warmth. By the time I made it back I was quite ready to hit the hot shower.

So here’s to my longest exercise regiment ever. Hopefully for many miles to come.


So…its gotten pretty cold here.

YTD – 853.96
MTD – 114.81
Tuesday – 16.06
Thursday – 18.08

Well winter is here for sure in the ‘ville. Against skeptical looks from co-workers I have headed out both days that were available to me this week. I have been reaching into the archives of my wardrobe to fill out the needed elements of cold fighting (or at least cold reducing) clothing. I have generally been successful – nice wool socks here, silk long underwear there. I filled in the bare spots with gloves and an ear covering under helmet hat. All in all I was comfortable both days. I think I should have heeded the advice of Chris at Clarksville and went for the full balaclava hat. I doubt I’ll make it through the winter without one. All I can think of when I see those hats is “urban ter’rist”. I can only imagine rolling through the back hills of Southern Indiana in that hat – they are likely to call John Ashcroft on me. My get-up overall is kinda dorky looking due to its cobbled together approach but when faced with looking dorky or not going out its a pretty easy choice.

I set out tentatively on Tuesday knowing I would be testing my layering strategy. It worked pretty well at about 40 degrees. I opted for a flat route that did not include any screeching downhill runs that water my eyes so I can’t see too well. I headed out to the Howard Steamboat museum in Jeffersonville. It is a good flat 16 miles that can be lengthened if needed. I stuck with 16 miles and turned in a time a little over 16 MPH which is a good speed for me.

On Wednesday night my friend Tim blogged about On Your Left Cycles – a little shop in the Phoenix/Irish Hill area of town. It looked pretty interesting so I mapped it out real quick and it looked like a good lunch time ride. A little long and involving the 2nd street bridge but that’s OK. It was a good opportunity to test my mettle and get more comfortable with riding in the street. I was actually pretty warm by the time I made it to the bridge and over. I had a pretty good ride up Market Street which contains some of the limited precious bike lane. Of course the opportunity for meeting open car doors is pretty high so it requires ample diligence. I made it to the shop, looked around a bit, and inquired if they might have any more rides scheduled for this year. They said probably so. Another guy who appeared to work there walked in and gave me immediate props on “My” Bridgestone. That was fun – thanks Tim!

I decided to head back to the bridge a different way and rolled up Broadway and down 2nd street. Both of these roads have suspect traffic patterns and it was a lot of stop and go. I had a nice ride back especially past the bridge. I rode the sidewalks of the bridge again and the interfacing of the sidewalk back to the road pretty much sucks both ways. By the time I got back my right foot was quite cold and it felt good to get in that hot shower. That and two cups of hot tea left me feeling good.

Today may well be the ‘ol Edwardsville climb probably from the Budd road approach.

A slow start to November

YTD – 819.82
MTD – 80.66
Monday – 16.50
Friday – 14.66

I went into last week knowing I would have limited chances to ride. I was scheduled to head off to Chicago for a 3 day jaunt to call on my favorite customer, hit a trade show, and have a vendor take me/us out to dinner for a change. I haven’t driven to Chicago since well before the twins were born but I’m pleased to report that I still recall the way. My iPass still works too which is good.

Monday morning I hit Clarksville Schwinn to pick up some cold weather supplies. I settled on some clearance gloves and a superbly expensive hat. I am really trying to scrimp and only get what I think I need. A few cold rides have left my hands quite cold and I can not stand to have air rushing into my ears. I have also loaded my bag for this week with wool socks and perhaps more importantly some silk long underwear. Sounds a little funny but it should really help. I remember wearing it when I attended U of L and had to walk around a lot. It is my understanding that polypropylene is intended to be synthetic silk. I look forward to the results.The forecast indicates I will get a chance this week.

I had a lot on my plate trying to get ready to be out of the office for 3 days so I didn’t think too hard about a route and decided to take my standard route to Edwardsville. It offers two good climbs and a good distance for lunch riding. I had a good ride out and for the first time made it all the way to the top entirely in the saddle. No jumping up when it really started to burn. I got close a week or two ago so I thought I would see if I could do it. Really the only victim was my unpadded arse. Out of saddle climbing does give you a bit of a break on the backside. I am not convinced this is really the best way to climb but it felt like an accomplishment to make it. The new cold weather gear was an improvement. My feet were still quite cold which reminded me it was time to fix the sock situation.

Friday found me antsy to get out and ride but was complicated by a visit to a prospective elementary school. It really cut into my time for the day but the weather had taken a nice turn into the high 60’s and I really couldn’t help myself. I thought I would go for short and tough. I had tried an “up and down” route before but thought I could make it better. The four hills are Valley View/Capt Frank, Old Vincennes, Cherry Street Hill, and Camp Road. The last two are short but very steep. Map My Ride indicates 6-8% grades. The RB-1 has no “granny gear” it only has tough guy options for climbing. Here is the route:
14 Miles 4 Hill ZigZag Through Silver Hills
Find more Bike Rides in New Albany, Indiana
I tacked on some extra distance out Corydon Pike mostly to give myself some extra recovery for the Cherry Street Hill climb, it is a real beast. When I headed back towards the Camp Rd hill it was quite a daunting look. I should have taken a picture, I will try to the next time. I have gone down that hill many times but never back up.

In the end this made for a great technical workout. I wanted to hit it kind of hard and I felt good afterward. I took the bike home for the weekend but alas, did not make it out. I am going to hit this week as hard as I can. After a great October this month is looking like it will be a struggle to hit 200 for the month. We’ll see.

New Book Idea – This Machine Kills Fascists

DSCN1276_edited.JPG, originally uploaded by cdale.

I have been feeling ill so I laid off the bike ride on Friday. That freed up some time at lunch to work on a sketch I have had in my mind. I started off thinking about something to the effect of “Ride your Bike – It’s good for America”. But I soon settled on something at least a tad more subversive with a pop culture tinge to it. I finished with the drawing above. It’s a clear homage to the Woody Guthrie guitar seen in this famous picture:
Woody Guthrie Guitar

I was thinking it would make a great cover for a pocket sized bike journal. To the bike riders in the crowd – what information would you like to see inside a bike journal? Obviously date and mileage spots, then maybe the rest of each page for a brief summation of the ride?

Tim suggested maybe a shirt as well, I still have screen printing equipment in the basement. I might be inclined to make a screen if there was interest. It would mostly hinge on getting a colleague to take care of the actual screen making part. I’m gonna look into that.

This was also my first sketch into this beautiful book my friend Dave brought me back from St Louis:
It came from a letterpress shop called The Firecracker Press. It’s a beaut’.

I first became interested in Woody Guthrie as a result of the Wilco/Billy Bragg collaboration called Mermaid Avenue. I suspect I am not the only one. Here are two tracks off of the album – one upbeat, one a little slower. It is Americana at its finest.