Monday, April 30, 2012

Every Day May

I'd like to propose a little experiment to our loyal readers.  I'm going to undertake something I'm calling Every Day May.  Quickly tossing the phrase to Google will make clear that I'm not the first person to think up the idea or enjoy its simple rhymes.  This guy claims to have invented it, though there's some triathlon version out there, too.  And, of course, the arts crowd has their version.  It's entirely possible, however, that the term is so popular precisely because it's such a good idea.  Or catchy.  But I'm going with good.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Tasting Notes: CLIF Shot Energy Gel—Vanilla

I have long thought of sports gel packs in much the same way I think of fluoride treatments at the dentist—as disgusting but beneficial semi-fluids. In my experience, most gel packs and fluoride treatments taste awful, like some unholy combination of artificial flavor and rancid yak butter. Both are a cruel tease: you’re offered a misleading array of “flavors” to choose from, as if you’re selecting ice cream, pop, or candy. So you get your hopes up, only to have them dashed when your taste buds get involved.

Friday, April 20, 2012

The Ride of Spring

I happened upon this photo the other day, in a pile of old papers on the corner of my desk. It was taken last July, on an early morning ride with my pal Penn, at a secret location somewhere south of Edmonton. I remember the ride well; it was one of those startlingly bright summer mornings we get here in central Alberta, and we found ourselves on a nice stretch of new pavement. I did a double-take when I saw this photo. The colors—that intense green and gold and the impossible blue—just about took my breath away. I'd forgotten that such colors were even possible.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Donnybrook in the Desert

Phoenix sucks for cycling. At least that’s what Val, a one-time Tucsonan, had told me (many times, in fact), and that’s what I had heard from more than one contributor to on-line forums discussing Arizona’s version of the great cycling debate: Phoenix vs. Tucson—which is better for cycling? Phoenix, so goes the argument, is enormous, sprawling, freeway-laced, concrete-filled, and generally not cycling friendly. Tucson, however, according to loyalists, being a more manageable size, is easy to get across on a bike, close to some great climbs, and home to a thriving bikey culture—in other words, it is a fabulous cycling centre. Now that I’ve visited and cycled in both cities, it’s time to weigh in with my two bits on who gets the nod in this epic battle. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Guest Post by Anon A. Moose

Our first guest post at the Dusty Musette arrives courtesy of Anon A. Moose:  She's shared a little flake of memory, a prose poem of sorts.  Enjoy.

Monday, April 9, 2012

The 2012 24 HITOP (Part 2)

This year's 24 was our most successful yet.  Rendered unable to ride, I jumped in to crew the race for my compadres.  This was going to be Tando's fifth time in the ring and Penn's first.  Tando wanted seven laps by the end of the ride, and Penn hoped to put in four.  I was going to stay up around the clock, fill water bottles, and generally provide good spirits and motivation.  My goal was to drink the most coffee.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Phoenix Postcard

Found a perfect desert road this morning. I’ve been riding around northeast Phoenix (Scottsdale and Fountain Hills) in the mornings all week while on a family/cycling/baseball getaway from the crappy Alberta April. Although the roads here have been technically excellent—wide bike lanes, clean shoulders, smooth surfaces—and the scenery chock full of grade-A desert vistas, something had been lacking in the rides so far. I’m still relatively new to desert riding; this is only my second visit to Arizona. Just this morning I realized what it I liked so much the first time around: desert silence.

Monday, April 2, 2012

The 2012 24HIOP (Pt. 1)

After last week's depressing post about my depressing shoulder injury, I think it necessary to talk about the event itself.  Penn gave a taste of the festivities shortly after his return, but I have yet to share my reflections.  Despite the gloomy start, the whole thing was, as always, an enjoyable and regenerative experience.  It was also, I think, the first year in five of trying where all of our plans and experiences came together to produce an unexpectedly happy outcome.  Oh, and we also indoctrinated Penn into the endurance riding lifestyle.