Not much happening today, work wise, so I am finding ways to help the day along. Cooking is always good. Dinner will be pintos, collards and cornbread. The pintos and collards are done, but the cornbread wasn’t going to make itself–so I did.
The recipe from Incredibly Delicious is wonderful. I’ve probably talked about it before, but I don’t feel like looking it up. My Dad likes it so much he asks me to send him loaves in lieu of gifts.
My mind is increasingly pulled in the direction of the gardens. The seedlings in the basement are coming along nicely. Above are cukes on the left and tomatoes on the right. Basil below.
I might go out later and put cool weather seeds in the home garden. Lettuces and such. Frida is resting, as dogs will do. Odd that she has her back to all possible danger. Has she given up guarding the yard? I don’t blame her. Things can be pretty quiet around here most days.
The buyer of the Grand Velo picked it up last night. Talking with him about bikes for twenty or so minutes was more pleasure for me than payment for the frame. He has about the same number of bicycles as do I. Buys and sells over time. Even though I am going to make a concerted effort to sell, I’d be a fool if I thought I’d bought my last one. In the end, what is the harm in collecting, really? That’s how he feels anyway. Who am I to argue? His preferences run toward Schwinn Paramounts and Campagnolo. I understand the attraction. The Grand Velo is his first Bridgestone (but like me he has a Rivendell Atlantis and a Rivendell Road). Toward the end of our conversation I complimented his VW GTI. Told him I had one of the first ones and miss it to this day. Turns out he had one as well (white!). Big sigh for the days when small cars could be light. So much more fun to run around in a small light car with a small motor than a heavy car with a huge motor.
Espresso machine is heated up. I should go use it so I can shut it off. Take care.
This morning I offered for sale on Craigslist a Bridgestone Grand Velo 3000 frame and fork.
Even though it was a bit too large for me, I held onto it for more than ten years. It was just too pretty.
Posting the ad gave me a sick feeling. I fall deeply in love with every bicycle I work on. The longer it is in my care, the deeper the love.
It sold in under 30 minutes to someone I know (even though the sale was anonymous and I didn’t contact anyone about it).
Happily, I know this someone will take very good care of it. That takes some of the sting out of it.
I will try to keep the ball rolling with a few more sales this Spring.
Otherness? A friend forwarded to me his colleague’s blog. The writer is a librarian with a love for cycling history. I’ve been through twenty or so posts and am enjoying it. He is a good and careful researcher. You should stop by if you have time.
Three cheers to the workers, all!
I love my wife! The day started with a nice walk with Frida. Lacey said she wanted to go to the gym in the morning. I said it was so pretty that maybe she’d be willing to bicycle in the country with me. No driving to the gym. No electricity used by the work out machines. Free vitamin D from the sun. Togetherness. It is kind of cold and very windy, but she said yes! I love pedaling with my sweetie!
Lacey wanted to ride her Bridgestone XO-2. It is her favorite go fast bicycle. Her Panasonic road bike is probably quicker, but it isn’t as stable or comfortable and the XO-2 has easier gears. Perfect. I picked out my new Bridgestone RB-2.
Lacey also wanted a bagel brunch. I had thought the same thing when I woke up, so I stuffed a cotton bag in my coat pocket and planned a country route that dumped us out by a grocery (where we could get Tofutti cream cheese) and then we’d continue home and stop by the bagel store.
The ride in the country was hard work. A very strong head wind the whole way. We enjoyed it anyway.
After the grocery, we faced a pretty long ride along a very busy street, but as luck would have it we had the strongest tailwind the whole way. It was amazing. We had to be going twenty-five, maybe more, with almost no effort. I haven’t had that kind of fun in ages!
The line for bagels was out the door and moving slowly. When I got inside the door, I grabbed a bag of day old bagels and headed to the cash registers. That’s the ethic there. If you don’t need the help of the sandwich makers, you get to cut to the registers. Score!
Home safe now. Lacey is cleaning up while I type. Then bagel brunch! Woo hoo!
I hope your Sunday is extra special, too.
And, no, I am not proud of myself. But it was so pretty, just my size, and priced so reasonably!
Compare the 1993 Bridgestone RB-2 to the RB-1 and you will find they used a different tube set and parts for the RB-2. The changes added one pound to the weight of the complete bicycle but dropped the price from approximately $1,200 for the RB-1 to $650 for the RB-2. Such smart choices. So smart that you think you’d see a million of these things rolling around, but I don’t think I have seen even one in the wild. The catalog helps explain their rarity–only 1,000 were produced. Head back to the entry for the RB-1 and you’ll find that in 1993 Bridgestone made two versions–a /7 and a /8. The /7 used bar end shifters and a 7-speed cassette. The /8 used brifters and an 8-speed cassette. Bridgestone made 1,000 of each of the /7 and the /8, for a total of 2,000.
I also just learned the RB-2 is fully vegan. The Avocet Racing saddle is covered in vinyl. The RB-1 came with an Avocet Racing-1 saddle covered in leather. Today I added MKS vegan toe straps, MKS Deep toeclips and Cinelli cork ribbon (twined to nearly match the frame paint). I will probably order Rivendell Ruffy-Tuffy tires for it, too. A little fatter and appropriately tan sidewalls.
That’s enough of that. Too much, really. I have to start selling bikes. If you know I have something you want, please be in touch. Letting go of any bicycle is difficult for me, but I need to learn how to do it.
I heard on the radio (a Telefunken bajazzo de luxe, it was)…
…that Target started selling the Missoni line yesterday and that everything sold out. They said the stuff is already up on eBay, so I looked for the bike. Seventy-four of them are listed. I didn’t look at each listing, but one has a buy it now price for $1,900. The bikes were offered by Target for $400. I will not be surprised if it and all the others sell. If even one of these bikes sells for $1,900, it might be the quickest value appreciation of any bicycle ever. I wonder what they will sell for in 20 years? Did I miss the boat on the next Bridgestone XO-1? Probably not, but only time will tell.
What else? I dropped off for repair my hifi amplifier. It is at Tempo Electric in Troy, NY. The principal, Joseph Levy, spent the good part of an hour with me answering my 101-level questions about this amp and his plans for it, his business practices, his gurus, skyrocketing prices of gold and silver, the durability of US made valves and so on. This conversation took place in his small but tidy workspace. Bins with what seemed like every possibly useful capacitor and resistor ever made lined his workbench. He had on display (presumably for his aural entertainment) the first monoblock amps he made. They used Heathkit chassis that were stripped of all components and rebuilt with the finest parts of the day. Things of beauty they were. On his bench was a vintage phono preamp made in California that had recently belonged to Mr. Levy’s business partner, Dr. Arthur Loesch. It had been sold on eBay to a purchaser in Korea. The buyer had asked Mr. Levy to replace capacitors and resistors and convert the unit for 240v use. Mr. Levy is going to listen to my unit, then take it apart and look it over. He will send three suggested parts lists with budget, bang for the buck and price is no option premium parts. I am very optimistic that this project is going to turn out beautifully. It should be back in a month. Anticipation is one of my favorite states.
Anything else? I had a garage sale this weekend. Sold one of three bicycles offered. The Goodrich is no longer with us. Turns out it is easy to sell bicycles if you price them at next to theft level prices. The bicycle came into my life for free, but I had added what I recall to be $60 Schwalbe Fat Frank tires, a smaller NOS one-inch pitch chainwheel, some NOS Schwinn grips and a bell. I priced it at $50 and the fellow offered me $35. I said ok and then he said he was going to resell in in Provincetown. Provincetown! I could have been sad that I let myself be taken. I could have been sad that the bicycle may very well be left to rust while chained to a utility pole (only Nelson “The Cheetah” Vails could make this thing go up the steep hills of Provincetown). I felt none of those things. Not only was I happy to be able to let a bicycle go, but Provincetown is a lovely place for this wonderful bicycle to spend its final decades. Good wishes to you, Goodrich!
I hope you are well.
I pedaled the country loop this morning. Simply perfect. Sunny. Not a breath of wind. Sixty-two degrees. Every car that passed gave me huge amounts of room. Thank you all for being so careful and cool. Much appreciated.
The Bridgestone 700 was fast and sure. Its Vredestein Perfect tires can be inflated from 85 to 120 psi. I stopped at 90. This bicycle is a real racer with tight geometry and no provisions for fenders or racks. Racier tires might make more sense. The next time I need tires for a fast city bicycle, I will move the Vredestein Perfects to that bicycle and buy some slicks for the Bridgestone 700.
Here is one of the first views on my ride that makes me thankful the city stops so abruptly on my end of town.
I was curious to see what Irene had done. Not much had changed by this point in the ride. Still pretty as a picture. That’s not the road I pedal on. That is a driveway off of the road.
Aha. First real evidence of Irene. This road lost its bank.
Hard to appreciate the height and steepness of the drop off from this photo. It was severe.
The water under this bridge is now about 20 feet below the surface of the road, yet there are limbs stuck in the bridge suggesting water had risen to cover the roadway at some point during or shortly after the storm.
Easier to see some of the debris here.
Again, hard to tell there are 20 feet from where I am standing to the now low again water, but that is about right.
Another barn with the Helderberg Mountains in the background. If you want to pedal up to Thatcher Park, I believe these are the mountains you must overcome. I love this barn not only because it is beautiful and sits in front of a pretty backdrop, but because it is the half way point for my ride.
I came across line crews replacing electrical lines. Apples still clung to trees. Neighbors were sharing stories at roads’ edge. I pedaled slowly, but even without pushing the hills got my heart moving. It feels great to be able to do this ride without feeling like I did much. I have attained a modest amount of conditioning. That is all I ever really want. We’ll see if I can keep it up over the winter. Rollers? Longer winter rides if and when the snows leave the roads? Too soon to tell.
The sauerkraut is souring nicely. The apples, carrots and caraway are elbowing their way into the flavor. Three or so more days and it should be ready to eat and store.
Time to work. Be well.
Are you 5-8 or so and need a road frame? Deal of the year, to be sure. I’d buy it myself, but I have a dozen or so too many already. 56 cm. Pre-worn so you don’t need to baby it. It will be sold before I finish breakfast. Maybe before I finish this post.