Cycling Along The Way...

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Silver City, NM, United States
Riders of the wheel. Racers, Roadies, Mountain bikers, Touring cyclists, Commuters, and others. Diamond frames, recumbents, trikes, and more. Sharing a web of connections often misunderstood or unappreciated by those who don't ride. Herewith, my attempt to share some of the more rational thoughts that flit around inside my head while bicycling, knocking back a brew or three, or just thinking about life. Reviews of bicycles, gear, touring, and more, plus some unsolicited posts about people, politics, and philosophy. Other things, too. Me: retired, gave up my TV in 1988, avid cyclist, several cross country tours completed with more to come. Your thoughts?

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Blue Skies, Westerly Winds, And Heading Down The Road...

"If you come to a fork in the road...take it!" ~ Yogi Berra

After saying adios to Eileen, my wife, I headed East on Rt. 60 for Mountainair, NM, 40 miles down the road.  Unexpectedly, I encountered a rider about 4 miles from my starting point.  The first one of this trip.  Garrett works in the oil fields in Montana, is 23 yrs old, has never done a bicycle tour before (nor had he done any training prior to doing this tour) and wasn't able to convince his housemates to join him on the tour.  He had a break from his work, so he bought a Surly Disc Trucker touring bicycle (http://surlybikes.com/bikes/disc_trucker), panniers, etc., and headed out from North Carolina on Dec. 5, 2014.  Having been on the road for 21 days, he was headed to Los Angeles, CA.  He's been riding about 120 miles a day and expects to finish by the end of March, which is Tuesday.  From there, it's back to Minnesota where he's from, then back to work in the oil fields.  I took his photo after we'd talked for a while.
After taking the photo, he asked me if I'd text it to his Mom in Minnesota, which I did.  We said goodbye, wished each other well, and we were off in opposite directions.  Shortly after parting, I received a text from his Mom, who was worried because she thought his "lips were swollen".  Assuring her that was not the case, I informed her that her son was doing great, in fine spirits, and was looking strong and very capable of finishing his tour.  She was relieved to hear it.

The road to Mountainair soon started to gain in grade and I was working hard.  As I kept going, the climbing became more obvious and I was soon pedaling harder.  Being strong enough to push a gear doesn't always mean you should.  Soon, my left knee began to hurt.  Initially, I wasn't sure what was up, but began to realize that I had to stop pushing the harder gears.  By the time I got to Mountainair, my knee was hurting, so I took a couple of aspirins and soaked in a hot bath.  Next day, all was better and my knee was fine.  Perhaps the one aspect of traveling on Rt. 60 is the wide open space.  For those who live in these towns, it's somewhere.  For me, it's still the middle of "nowhere".  A brief video to prove my point: http://youtu.be/L4B8KFIhe9k

Prior to leaving, I had decided to stay at motels for the first week to give me a good place to sleep (maybe!!!), check my gear, rearrange it so it felt better to me on the Cannondale, and to make the adjustment to bicycle touring that I know takes place that first week.  In Moutainair, I readjusted the load on the bike and it rode better the next day going to Vaughn.  Riding the bicycle with a heavy load on it gives the bike a completely different feel to it.  It feels heavy initially, but I'm becoming acclimated to the weight.  It takes considerably more effort to control a loaded touring bicycle.

Not much to write home about in Mountainair.  I stayed at the Turner Inn & RV Park, which was a decent place.  Once again, I readjusted the load and it felt better the next day heading to Vaughn.  What was good about this day was the decent that got better the farther down the road I traveled.  Now, I'd like to go on and on and on about Vaughn, but you'd have to ask..Why?  Another desperate town in Eastern New Mexico hanging on because of the workers on the railroad.  Food there...awful.  So, next day, I headed off to Fort Sumner, NM, where Billy the Kid is buried.  It's the main attraction in Fort Sumner.  Period.  These places just astound me with their ability to hang on to the thin economic edge that's there.  

The good part of the ride from Vaughn to Fort Sumner???  Another unique encounter made this ride one to remember.  After cresting one of the numerous rollers, I spotted a couple of guys next to what I thought were lawnmowers while standing next to a BNSF (Burlington Northern Santa Fe) railroad truck.  Mowing the grass???  WTF?  As I got closer, and the truck pulled away, I realized the "lawnmowers" were bike trailers.  So, where are the bikes?  Kept trying to see if they were down on the ground and these guys were just taking a break.  Nope.  By this time, I'm right up to them and one of them yells, "Hey, another American flag!"  Trying to stop a heavy loaded bike takes a bit of time, so I ended up cruising past these guys before I could slow down enough to turn back to talk to them.  As it turned out, I was correct.  NO bikes!  Just bike trailers.  Another WTF?  "What are you guys doing?" "Walking across America." "Jesus...why?" "For the health of it." "You mean for the HELL of it, right?"  We all laughed...  Seems like Forrest and Mike had dropped out of college, worked for a bit, then decided to do this because, once they got jobs, relationships, and the assorted responsibilities that accompany that sort of stuff, they knew the likelihood of being able to do it then would be minimal, at best.  So, they're walking from Jacksonville, FL, to Seattle, WA, pushing these bike trailers with their gear, clothing, water, and food.  I was seriously impressed.  Mike was impressed that I had my PubQuest cycling jersey on and wondered if that was my quest on the bike.  Well, a little...and the Civil War.  Oh, and my high school reunion.  These guys were the most unique thing I've encountered since the Japanese guy rollerblading across America back in Oregon in 1988.  Once they get to Seattle, they're buying bikes, etc., and riding back to Marquette, MI, where they're from.  Or maybe New York, if the weather is good and they have time.
Can you believe the smile on Forrest???  They're walking around 25 miles a day.  And he's smiling.  Gotta love this kind of attitude.  And determination.  We talked about rattlesnakes, which I told them not to worry too much about those critters.  Ants were the biggest pain in the ... wherever they bit you.  Mike had already had an encounter with ants, so he agreed with my comments.  They're headed to San Francisco before arriving in Seattle.  And they're headed there via Death Valley!  Whatever is motivating these guys, it's formidable.  People think I'm crazy to ride across America???  
A very brief video: http://youtu.be/FBymZbcaQSA

After saying our goodbyes, I continued on to Fort Sumner, NM, where I once again readjusted the gear and the next day to Clovis, NM, went really well.  No doubt, I was getting stronger, too.

Ok, enough for this post.  Now, a tune to exit with.  EmmyLou Harris and Gram Parsons doing "A Song For You".  Some of the photos remind me of places I've been through so far on this ride.  Next post, a bit of Clovis, Texas, OK, and into Kansas.  Yikes!!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Heading Out The Door...

"Bicycling is a waste of time.  You're just wearing your legs out giving your ass a ride."
~Seldom Seen Smith in the "Monkey Wrench Gang"

On Friday, March 20, 2015, I did a final check on everything that I was cramming into my Arkel panniers (GT-18 front panniers; GT-54 rear panniers).  After completing that task, I checked my Cannondale touring bicycle out one last time before leaving.  Once done, I began to put it all in our 2006 Toyota RAV4.  Thankfully, it all fit.  I want to know why I can always come up with one more thing that I HAVE to bring along with me until what I have collected would need two bicycles to carry it all.  In the "final check", much was jettisoned, I assure you.  Seeing how much it all weighed (don't ask) and trying it out loaded on the bicyle, I had no problem realizing that some stuff wasn't going to make the trip.

With the RAV4 loaded up, I drove to the library to pick up Eileen and head off to Truth or Consequences, NM, (known to all of New Mexico, fondly, as "T or C") to spend the night at La Paloma Hot Springs and have dinner at Bella Luca.  On the way over Emory Pass to T or C, about 25 miles out of town, I realized that I'd left my contact lenses home. Damn! DAMN! DAMN!!!  So, I made a U turn, but, before heading back home to get my contact lenses, Eileen said, "Wait.  I can mail them to you."  Did I tell you that I love my wife?  She always tone down my knee jerk reactions.  Onward to T or C!!!

La Paloma was just such a great place and a relaxing time for both of us.  Eileen had a tough week and I was experiencing a bit of anxiety.  The hot springs were the magic touch.  Some pics:

And Bella Luca was all that the hype said it would be.  Cool place, good food, quality wine list, top notch service, and I was with Eileen.  Didn't take photos inside the place.  Yes, I forgot.  But I have a pic of their sign;
If you're in T or C, for whatever reason, don't miss this place.  Next morning, we headed to Passion Pie Cafe in T or C for coffee and breakfast.  More pics:
Once filled up with some good food and caffeine, we went north to the Bosque del Apache to see some birds, go to the Visitor Center, hang out a bit.  Met a couple from Santa Fe, who had driven to Socorro, then rode their Ibis tandem to the Bosque for a day's ride, heading back to Santa Fe that afternoon.  The Bosque is another great place in New Mexico that's well worth the time to visit.  For bird watching, hiking, or just driving around the Bosque.  Yes, some pics:
Moving on, we headed north, once again, and checked out Magdalena, NM, which, sadly, is slowly dying.  There are a few businesses, but it's a struggle for them to hold on, I'm sure.  Realizing there wasn't anything open in Magdalena, we headed back to Socorro to the Twisted Chile, the newly opened brewpub there. Casey, the owner/brewmaster, was there.  I recognized him from when the Socorro Springs Brew Pub was in the building that now houses the Twisted Chile.  His sister, Molly, and her husband, had opened Socorro Springs, but had moved the brewing, etc., to Buena Vista, CO, and, according to Casey, they were presently in New Zealand, looking to open a brewpub there.  Fortunately, Casey was on the same page with me in acknowledging that Socorro Springs was not what it used to be.  Nope, didn't get photos.  Casey told us about a small beerfest that was going on in town, so we had a few pints of stout, some pizza, and made our way to the fest.  Picked up a couple of St. Patrick's Day pint glasses, but, alas, no photos.  Now, I have reasons to go back to the Twisted Chile....I need photos!

Next morning, we went to a local coffee shop in Socorro that was about as uninspiring as I've ever experienced.  Not chancing an espresso, I went with the Americano.  Hard to fail on that call.  Eileen's cappucino was not good.  It's difficult to kill a cappucino, in my opinon.  Food was blah.  Oh, well, on to I-25 and Rt. 60.  The morning was absolutely stunning.  Great weather, a wind out of the West, and a blue sky that went on forever.  Once at the intersection, I pulled over and began hauling things out of the RAV4.  Here are some pics:
After getting everything out and on the ground, I attached it all to the Cannondale.  My God, it weighs a lot.  Oh, well, I can jettison items when I get to Eileen's Mom's place in Kansas City.  Ok, more pics:
Not much left at this point in time other than to say a very tearful, heartfelt adios to my Eileen.  I was missing her before I swung my leg over the top tube.  Not having her with me is the very hardest part of this trip.  After this is done, the next ones will be with her.  I headed out around 11am on March 22, 2015, for my next adventure.  More on that in my next posting.  For today, it's on to Mountainair, about 40 miles down the road.

What tune to pick to exit this post with???  A hard one to decide on...Johnny Cunningham, one of Eileen's favorites....http://youtu.be/ejIkLESBDXc  Enjoy!



























 

Monday, February 23, 2015

2015 Road Trip Through the U.S. And Parts of Canada...

"I can think.  I can sleep.  I can move.  I can ride my bike.  I can dream." ~ Bill Walton

This is the time.  This is the trip.  I'm ready to ride...  

After finishing my cross country trip back in 2010, I began toying with the idea of another long distance bicycle ride.  Having chewed on this adventure for some time now, it was necessary to take a good look at what I wanted to do.  Initially, I thought about doing a really long ride, but, after looking at it on http://ridewithgps.com/, I realized I was taking on more than I wanted.  First, and foremost, because of how long I'd be away from my wife, Eileen.  That wasn't going to do.  I'd miss her way too much.  Secondly, it appeared that distance alone was the primary focus. 

With that in mind, I began thinking about precisely what I was interested in and exactly what that entailed.  My primary interests on this ride were to visit U.S. Civil War battlefields and, serendipitously, attend my 50th high school reunion back in Glens Falls, NY, then ride back to Silver City, NM.  Thus, this ride would incorporate three good reasons...round trip ride, battlefields, high school reunion.  And I'll get to meet up with Eileen in Catonsville, MD, and in Milwaukee, WI.  I started to feel much better about this ride.

On March 20th, Eileen and I will head out of Silver City, NM, by car to Truth or Consequences, NM, where we'll stay at the La Paloma, which has hot springs for us to soak in, and to go to Bella Luca Cafe (http://cafebellaluca.com/), for an Italian dinner and to see if the reviews have merit.  The next morning, we'll head to the Bosque del Apache (http://www.fws.gov/refuge/bosque_del_apache/) to check out the birds and do a bit of hiking.  Then, it's on to Socorro, NM, to check out a new brewpub that's opened there, the Twisted Chile Brewpub (http://www.twistedchilebrew.com/).  On Sunday, Eileen and I will head to the intersection of I-25 and NM Rt. 60, where I'll put the panniers on my Cannondale touring bicycle and say adieu to the love of my life, until August, when I'll be back in Silver City.  While I've reduced the mileage of this ride, it'll still be around 6,000 miles, give or take.  I will miss her dearly.  But, with our Apple products, we'll be able to FaceTime each other and I'll be able to post pictures, videos, and text much quicker than back in 2010 before I had the iPad and the iPhone.  Funny, thinking back to my first cross country ride...Fairbanks, AK, to Wells Beach, ME, I only had cashier's checks, a phone card, and, I'm not positive about this, but a single credit card.  Now, I'm digitalized and internetted to the max.

In my previous post, I mentioned that I'd do a write up of my gear, but I've decided against that.  While I'm on my trip, I'll post about the gear, as I use it, and give readers my opinion of it and how useful it's been...or not.  This time, for my first time since becoming a member of Warmshowers.org (https://www.warmshowers.org/), I'll be using their services and will report on what that's been like.  Eileen and I have taken in many riders for a night or four from all over the world.  Australia, Germany, England, Scotland, Switzerland, Belgium, Austria, and from all over the U.S.  And it's been fabulous, as a host.  Meeting other people/cyclists across the U.S., while touring, is something I've been looking forward to and now I get to do it.  How cool is that???  Local cyclists are so much better informed about the area in which they live.

So, now, it's time to wrap this post up with a tune....hmmm, which one?  Ok, here are a couple of Guy Clark tunes that are particular favorites of mine...L.A. Freeway (http://youtu.be/yTwUpkEK6yk)  and Desparadoes Waitin' For A Train (https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=dFb1lGMvS3I).  Hope y'all enjoy them.  And, to all those people out on the highways of America that I've not met yet, here I come...and, to my wife, Eileen, I love you with every breath I take.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A New Year...And A Look Back

"New Year's Day now is the accepted time to make your regular, annual, good resolutions.  Next week, you can begin paving hell with them as usual." ~ Mark Twain

2014.  It FLEW by.  When I was a kid, summers seemed to last close to forever.  The time between Thanksgiving and Christmas was, I'm certain, an eternity.  Ask any kid waitin' on Santa!  Now, I'm wondering how to put the brakes on time.  It is gaining speed faster than I can believe...

Looking back on 2014, I'd say there are several things that stand out for me.  Way too many deaths.  My very good friend, Bruce Doeren, whose death I'm still coming to terms with.  His death was the hardest for me personally this past year.  The best cousin a person could ask for, Barb Sullivan Penders.  Another classmate or two from high school.  My nephew, Stephen Taft, died much too young.  Several others who were large presences in my youth back in Upstate New York.  I am thankful for having these people in my life, some more so than others, but, all in all, my life would have been different had they not been part of it.

The other thing that gathers family, friends, and others is a wedding.  In September/2014, my nephew, John, and his significant other, Nancy, got married.  Some photos of the event...
Now, here's a link to a video where John shows his new bride exactly how the cake thing is SUPPOSED to be done at a wedding:http://youtu.be/QnzJoUrlQMI  First time I've ever seen this at a wedding, too.  Oh, well...we're all very happy for John and Nancy despite my nephew's attempt to demonstrate who, at a wedding, gets first dibs on the cake.

As for bike stuff, this year brings new things...starting with a new, long, solo tour for me.  My goal is to ride around the U.S. and Canada, for approximately 9,000 miles.  I'm probably in the best shape now than I have been in years.  After this ride, I'll be doing some different types of rides.  Instead of long rides, I want to do rides, like the spokes in a wheel, from a central location.  Places where Eileen and I want to go and really get an indepth take on the countryside and what a particular place has to offer.  And Europe.  Ireland, France, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Germany.  Most of Europe, but especially Ireland, France, and Italy.

Enough for this post.  Next one, I'll go over some of the gear I'll be taking with me on my tour and why.  So, for an exit tune, here's Neil Young doing "Long May You Run"...for John, Nancy, for my family, friends, for those I've yet to meet...http://youtu.be/WYna-UAt75c  

From Auld Lang Syne:
And there’s a hand my trusty friend!
And give me a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for days of long ago.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Katrien and Manu...Belgium Cyclists.

"Who put lemonade in my lemonade?" ~ W.C. Fields

Never mess with someone's lemonade... Not related in any fashion, but I like the quote by Fields.  Manu and Katrien contacted me back in November via Warmshowers.org (www.warmshowers.org) as they were riding the Adventure Cycling Association's Great Divide Mountain Bike Route (http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes-and-maps/adventure-cycling-route-network/great-divide-mountain-bike-route/).

The duo, in their 20's/30's, started in Alaska doing some outdoor travels, hiking/camping in the snow!  After that, they headed south and picked up the Great Divide trail in Canada.  How did they afford this long distance trip?  They saved their money and, when they had saved enough, they quit their jobs and headed out down the road.  Manu works at an oudoor store, so he will most likely get hired back on his return since he's an experienced hiker, cyclist, etc., and has used quite a bit of the gear the store sells.  So, when customers ask about a product, he's able to speak to them from having used the equipment.  Katrien will have to look for work, but she was not crazy about her job that she left for this trip.

Here are a few photos:
                     Manu and Katrien eating breakfast...
          Manu packing up, getting ready to head to Mexico...

       Manu's touring bicycle with Rohloff hub...
         Katrien and Eileen being videod by Manu...
      Katrien...
          Manu...
       Katrien and Eileen sharing some laughs...

These folks were great fun and will be headed to Cancun, Mexico, after leaving Silver City.  From Cancun, they'll return to Belgium.  They arrived at our house the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, just days after Eileen and I had returned from the funeral for our friend, Bruce (see the previous post on my website).  So, we were readjusting (and still are) from that shock. For Thanksgiving, we'd accepted an invite from friends to go to their house, which we'd accepted, but they had no room for more guests!  They'd invited 21 people to their house!!!  Brave people!!!  As it turned out, Manu and Katrien were able to experience a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with some other friends and cyclists who live at the Bike Haus, so they had their fill of turkey and pumpkin pie...and more.

I am new to using Apple products with the recent purchase of an iPad Air 2, so inserting videos in these posts is not as easy as it is with Microsoft.  There must be an easier way, but I'm still learning how to use this thing.  Hopefully, I'll learn how to do it.  
1.  Manu videoing Katrien and Eileen: http://youtu.be/z7hcH3NJmsI
2.  Katrien and Manu leaving for Mexico: http://youtu.be/aKVS--j6HaM

Katrien and Manu ended up staying 3 nights with us, which was good because they were such fun.  And good cooks.  Tiramisu, appetizers, and wine.  Hard to beat that.  I cooked dinner and we all ate too much....more fun.  While riding the Divide Route, they met up with a couple, Sarah and Matt...Sarah is from Australia; Matt is from England.  The couples ended up arriving in Silver City and met up with each other for Thanksgiving and for a bit of spirits/food at Gila Hike & Bike on the evening before Thanksgiving.  So, they left Silver City together.  Matt and Sarah were headed to Phoenix, while Manu and Katrien were headed to Mexico.  

Manu and Katrien have a website: http://cyclingsummits.be/  If so inspired, check it out and follow their ride.  What I still find amazing is the number of people we've met as Warmshowers.org hosts from all over the world.  Having lived in many large cities, where you'd think you'd meet people from other countries, no place compares to Silver City and the intersection of the Continental Divide hiking trail, the Southern Tier Bicycle Route, and the Great Divide Route.  We have met and have stayed in contact with many of the people who have stayed with us from all over the world.  Austria, Australia, Germany, England, Scotland, Switzerland, Belgium, and from many cities throughout the U.S.  Whodathunk, eh?

Meeting the likes of Katrien and Manu is what makes being a Warmshowers host so interesting and fun.  If you're interested, please sign up, particularly if you're a cyclist, too.  While on my long ride this year, I'll be using Warmshowers for places to stay while on the road.   And I'm excited about meeting so many new people!

Ok, time to exit with a tune...Richard Thompson doing "1952 Vincent Black Lightning" (https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=j0kJdrfzjAg).  One of my favorites from a great singer/songwriter.  Happy trails to you two, Manu and Katrien.  Come back anytime!!  Will see you in Belgium on my bicycle.





Monday, December 8, 2014

Bruce Doeren...My Friend

"You're dead a long time." ~ Anonymous

Sometimes, the world sucks.  And people die.  My good friend, Bruce, died recently and I was knocked off my dime.  Stunned would be a better description.  He'd just turned 60, had more toys than anyone I knew and, more importantly, he was a good guy.  Bruce and I became friends when I worked at University of New Mexico Hospital.  The how and why of our first meeting is no where to be found in my brain.  His oldest child, Miquela, is now 23 yrs old.  I met her when she was a little girl.  That will give you a clue as to how long we'd been friends.

He was an avid cyclist.  Hell, this guy was avid everything.  I believe Renassance Man would be the more accurate descriptor.  Bruce was into almost everything and he knew a ton about almost everything.  But, like I said, his best trait...he was a nice guy.

When he would talk to me about how things were at UNM Hospital and how they should be, he'd hurt my brain because he'd make me think outside of my box...and, most often, he was right.  If he had a fault, it was his unwillingness to acknowledge that, just because he was right about how something should be done, it wasn't always the right thing to do at that particular time.  If you know what I'm talking about here, fine.  If not, well, I don't want to take the time or space here to go into it. Ask someone else. Maybe they can help.

Bruce was not perfect.  Who is?  But he was my friend and, now, every time I'm out on a bike ride, I think of Bruce and get pissed off that he's dead.  And how unfair it is...to him, to his wife, Eloise, to his two children, Miquela and Ryan, and to those of us who called him a friend.  He was one of those friends who I could pick up where we left off from the last time we were together and move along like there had never been a time lag since we last saw each other.

And he collected things...Eloise believes he has around 50 bikes.  Yes, FIVE ZERO...50.  Ok, he was obsessive compulsive, too.  They have 4 houses. Maybe 5 vehicles including an RV.  Tools. Guns.  Four gun safes.  Jesus!  I don't even know all the stuff he'd collected over his lifetime, but it was a lot.

Not sure what that was all about, but it made him feel good to have it, which is good enough for me. He'd drag me to gun shops and gun shows trying to get me to buy a few more weapons.  Or to bike shops for sales and tell me that I needed something.  He'd get annoyed if I found something and got it for cheap and there wasn't a second one.  One time, he made me buy the beer at lunch because I'd beaten him to a sale item.  Too funny!

The best part is that we got to meet each other, work with each other, and ride with each other.  When in shape, he was the biggest, fastest cyclist for his size that I knew.  Going up South 14 on the East side of the Sandias in Albuquerque, as we'd near the top, he'd take off and be riding in a circle at the top, waiting for me.  Finally, I got in shape and I'd beat him to the top and circle, waiting for him.  He was always gracious about that...he'd tell me that I was kicking his ass.  And I was looking forward to riding with him again...and kicking his ass one more time.  We had a good rivalry on the bikes.  If the weather turned bad, we'd head out somewhere for nachos and beer, which was always a good substitute for crappy weather riding.

I am glad that he died in his sleep and hope that it was as painless as it could be.  He deserved that.  He'd earned that.  I'm still pissed off.  And I miss him more than I can say.  When Eileen and I went to his memorial service in Albuquerque, I was doing fine until I saw his bike up at the altar in the church.  It was his Sampson.  Here's a photo:
Bruce had this bike custom built by Sampson (http://www.sampsonsports.com/) when Eileen and I lived in Albuquerque, NM.  He tried to get me to buy one.  I told him that I already had two bikes and could only ride one at a time anyways, so what was I going to do with another road bike?  Obviously, having as many bikes as he could was a goal. 

I'm sort of rambling here, like acknowledging that Bruce is dead, I'm still not ready to let go.  Man, what tune do I use to end this post?  It'll be Davy Spillane once more, with Sinead O'Connor, doing "The Dreaming of The Bones" ...http://youtu.be/QVKIVL_YUzw

God speed, my friend...If it's possible, I do hope we meet again.

Monday, November 24, 2014

DARN TOUGH SOCKS: A Product Review

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former." ~ Albert Einstein 

Now, in my opinion, these are the best socks on the planet. My nephew, John, told me about them several years ago. We kind of go back-and-forth sharing things that we've discovered with each other. This is one of his discoveries. 

These socks are made in the U.S. and have a lifetime guarantee. The company is in Vermont and it's called Darn Tough.  And they mean it with their guarantee. Socks a little worn out after 10 years? Send them back and they'll send you a new pair. For free. How cool is that? No, this isn't an invitation to be a dick and just use the guarantee to your advantage. It speaks highly of a company that is proud of their product and believes in it.

Of course, the picture only shows one style and one color of a bike sock that's sold by Darn Tough. Check out their website for more styles, colors, and varieties of socks. I have worn my bicycling socks for over four years and they're still in great shape. The ones that I have are wool with nylon and Lycra in it for shape.  I wear them year-round. They keep my feet cool in the summer and warm in the winter. In my opinion, wool is the best material for socks, cycling shorts, and cycling jerseys.  It's an all year material and lasts a very long time.

My take on them?  5 Stars.




Okay. Time to head out of here and close with a tune. Clint Black singing a fav of mine, A Better
Man.