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Braking news...UPDATED

8/28/2012

The Scouts are going on a mountain bike trip at the end of this month, I'm pretty stoked. I've got an old 930 that I've just replaced aaalllllllmost everything on. I repainted the bad spray job, lubed and cleaned it, and replaced the bars, grips, back wheel and freewheel a couple of years ago in a fit of computer rage. This year I replaced the crankset, bottom bracket, chain, derailleur, shifters and cables.

 If we are actually going on trails, I'll have to replace the tires and brakes. I put smooth tires on it, since I was going to be riding on the roads, which is also the reason I didn't replace the old brakes, just the shoes. Well, if I'm going to be going downhill on dirt, I'll need knobby tires and brakes that actually work. Or I could crash into a couple of scouts and hope that slows me down.

 I was thinking about buying a new set of cheap road brakes anyway, just for looks. But seeing as how I may need to stop, I think I may blow some cash and get nice ones. The existing brakes are old BMX-type alloy single-pivot calipers. They can't stop me, and I'll need to lock the rear. The reason I did all that work without changing out the brakes is because I am just no good with brakes. I can adjust the gears, free up rusted handlebar risers, repack bearings and straighten rims, but I can't... CAN'T get brakes to work well. Strike that, I got the kids cantilevered brakes to work just fine. I just can't get the old calipers to work. It's a failing that I and my therapist have been working on for years now.

UPDATED:
 Howeveahhhhhhh. If you are looking to get new caliper brakes for a 20 year old bike, expect to spend an inordinate amount of time on bike-geek websites. I have no idea what these people are talking about, but it's almost as bad as getting on a craft beer website and posting that you are looking for a cheaper and less tasty alternative to warm Old Milwaukee.

 What I'm saying is, there are nerds and there are nerds. Bicycle and beer nerds are some of the worst nerds. If you post, like I did, on the wrong forum, expect a reply that will look like something like this...

"Looking for an opinion on caliper brake replacement on a 1991 Trek 930 with 26x1.75 tires"
Well, we all know on this forum that in 1991 only the 930a series came with caliper brakes and the tires weren't 1.75 but were originally 1.74 and that if you replaced the crankset, you just de-valued a classic by 1.5 million dollars. If I were you I'd get the solid gold Wonkwonk brake set, because $4000 isn't a lot to spend on performance.  Otherwise you could do what I did and build your own set out of dried earwax collected over a period of thirty years from wild Yellowstone Bison, or you could always fly to Japan where the only known original parts supplier for that particular model still lives in a monastery and ask for the blueprints, otherwise nothing you do or build will work. Personally, I masturbate daily with a 1971 Schwinn that I found hanging on the wall at an Applebee's and bought for $1 plus most of my penis. I would tell you to go that way, but really you should convert all your bicycles to fixed gears or else you are a racist who shops at Wal-Mart at the expense of good, American jobs.
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Interesting development and a bit of a history lesson.

8/16/2012

MY history, that is. Nothing special. The student staff at the Red and Black, a student-run newspaper at the University of Georgia walked out and started a blog. In the old days they would have started a new student newspaper, mimeographed after hours in the English department's office. In the old days, the open letter from the resigning editor would have been coherent at least, even if not proofread or spell-checked. Maybe I'm wrong (I'm not) but almost everything I've read lately from journalists, teachers or lawyers reads poorly. Marketing people write well, editorialists don't. I wonder why that is?

 At any rate, the Red and Black is not run by the University, it is a non-profit with its own board of directors. These Directors assumed a good deal of editorial control of the newspaper in some kind of boardroom coup while the staff was out on vacation or whatever it is that students do. The staff, predictably, threw a fit. I would have too. A complete meltdown. Warranted or not, it's what newspaper-types do when they don't get their way.

 I did not attend the University of Georgia, but I did have a newspaper induced fit during my freshman year of college. As a communications/broadcasting major I had to participate in what the school called "media practicum" and this involved doing the jobs the upperclassmen no longer wanted to do in the student-run media. Holding cue cards for the 4am TV news, the midnight to 4am radio show, and writing "campus notes" for, selling ads and distributing the campus newspaper (fresh from the printer at 5:00am Monday morning).

 I honestly liked the newspaper best, for a couple of reasons. First, I was comfortable with newspaper, I had worked on my High School newspaper and yearbook and since my High School did not have radio or TV, I was always at a disadvantage learning the ins and outs of electronic media (I have a foul mouth and bad handwriting). Second, I am not a morning person, but because I had to get up to deliver the newspaper, I always made it to my eight o'clock class on Monday. Once I even made it to breakfast, I think.

 I also got to be stupid. I wasn't allowed to do anything on the radio other than the time, station ID and song title. On TV, I just stood there and held up poster board. In "Campus Notes", I could be a bit silly. For example, I would goof on calendar items:
"The Campus Quilters will be exhibiting their prize-winning quilt in the Commons on Wed. Left-hander Mary Jones will be signing autographs and taking questions from the public. Faculty Advisor Dr. Smith will be speaking on "Playing Through It: How Injury Can Elevate The Competitive Quilter". Plus, Cookies! You don't want to miss this, folks!".
My blurbs were surprisingly popular, and sometimes I'd even get a special request from a campus organization to go over the top with their blurb. Until...

The Director of Student Life read the newspaper one day and decided that the "Campus Notes" section wasn't being "respectful" of the University. She approached the newspaper's faculty advisor (whom I had never actually met) and told him to "fix it". The faculty advisor told the editor to tell me to knock it off. The editor blew up, claimed censorship and interference with her job etc... etc... a real scene, evidently.

 I didn't know any of this had occurred. As a lowly freshman, I wasn't invited to the staff meetings, besides I had other things to do. At that meeting the editor resigned, effective Sunday, after the paper went out to the printer.

I had already put the "Campus Notes" together when I found out, late Thursday night at an off-campus party where I was drinking an awful lot of Schlitz Malt Liquor (the ORIGINAL Red Bull). That night I was accosted by the very drunk, very blonde, editor and apprised of the situation. I decided at that point to recommend a re-write the column, add in some facetious items and make sure to include the name of the Director of Student Life in each one. Such as
"The campus anti-circumcision league will be meeting for mutual support and positive stretching in the library on Tuesday at 6:00pm. With Dr (insert name of Director of Student Life here) advising on weight placement and respect."
It may have been silly and childish, but I thought it was funny. Besides, I was OUTRAGED! So, slightly tipsy, I went to the newspaper office (after striking out with the editor) and re-wrote the column.

No surprise, by that Friday afternoon, the editor had had a change of heart. I hadn't.  My changed column went off to the printer, since grunt work, like "proof reading" also went to the freshmen. My changes weren't  discovered until Sunday night, and in a hysterical meeting (that I also was not invited to) it was decided that the newspaper would not be distributed after printing, it would be destroyed. A new edition would be printed, with an explanation written by the editor (why they bothered explaining something they were trying to cover up, I'll never know), and I would get kicked off of the newspaper and lose one-third of my "media practicum" grade (the faculty advisor saw to that.  You know, the guy I never met?). The editor, of course, did not lose her job and did not lose a grade.

I eventually transferred to another, better university but I still treasure the lesson I learned my freshman year:
Everyone's an asshole. They'll fuck you over if you give them half an excuse. Either don't give them an excuse or fuck them over first. Either way, someone's getting fucked over, in every situation, no matter how trivial. In fact, the more trivial the situation, the more certain types of people will try and fuck you over. Recognize these types. Avoid them if possible, if it's not possible, plant a dead hooker in their car. It's what Jesus would want you to do. -- Abe Lincoln

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Social my ass

8/15/2012

So I was forced into joining Facebook. Now I have to work at it. That's annoying as shit. I have to click and log in, update and friend and view and approve and bullshit bullshit bullshit. I much prefer this. I speak. You listen. Or not, more than likely. It's not a "relationship", I'm not worried about your "feelings" or any type of etiquette (part of the reason no one ever read this was because I refused to take part in the "blogroll' bullshit. I DON'T WANNA! I just want to be who I am... the homeless guy screaming obscenity-laced conspiracy theories to passers by while fondling my genitals and drinking sterno. Is that so hard?
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First Day of School

8/10/2012

 
This is the 12th time I've taken these.

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The dork is strong in this one

8/07/2012

OK, first the dork in me. My Windows Phone got updated. I am peee-siked. For those of you with that other, lesser smart phone, I am sorry that you do not know the joy of owning the second thing Microsoft has ever done right. (The first being that giant yellow trackball from Microsoft Bob). This phone rawrks! Hard to believe, I know. I am totally stoked for Windows Phone 8. You must use a Windows Phone to realize just how awesome it is, it is not an acquired taste, everyone just likes it. Like cocaine... or blowjobs, sounds odd but it somehow just works. Now for the dork in others. No one gives a shit if a bunch of homos with boyfriend issues leftover from junior high want to be married. Go be married. But don't call it "hate" when people who's religion treats marriage as a sacrament don't like Bruce and Bruce pretending to be man and wife. Because that's what they are doing. Pretending to be married. Just like 51% of hetero men and women who get "married". Homosexual marriage is stupid. Why? Because Homosexuals won't settle for not using the word "marriage". That's why. I don't hate Homos. I hate assholes. Especially assholes who are given the opportunity to have exactly what they asked for, but out of respect for tradition and the millions upon millions of otherwise tolerant people with a smidgen of religious belief, it has to be called something else so they don't want it. Go on, have that tantrum your father beat out of you when you were six and got the blue bike for Christmas instead of the pink one. You aren't doing yourself or your stereotype any good. By the way, I'm still on some "conservative" mailing lists and just so you know the whole "support Chick-Fil-A day wasn't about hating gays, it was to protest the two mayors and a senator or two who said they would actively and illegally block business permits and zoning for Chick-Fil-A over something an employee said in church. So FUCK YOU you haters. You want to see hate, check out the goddamn homo contingent at any Boy Scout event. I'll show you ugly hate. Homos get fed at Chick-Fil-A just like everyone else, except on Sunday, when NOBODY gets fed at Chick-Fil-A. They don't pay more, they don't get bounced at the door and they don't have to sit in the "homos only" section. In the last ten or so years I've only eaten at Chick-Fil-A once or twice, mainly because I try to avoid fast food, but also because it seems to me Chick-Fil-A is never open. I did stop for lunch there two or three months ago on my way home from Chicago, and none of the people in there were making out. Not even the hetero ones, I'm not sure if it's because people don't normally make out in fast food joints, or if this particular Chick-Fil-A had a policy denying heterosexual couples their God-given right to PDA. I wasn't terribly upset at the lack of a live sex show but I really could have used a hand job so it was definitely noticeable. Anyway, the place was really clean, the bathroom was spotless before I went in, and the manager refilled my Diet Coke. (I thought he was coming on to me, guess I know better now.) At any rate, it was a nice place with OK food, but no champagne room. I left a pretty bitter review on Trip Advisor, I'll probably update it now. You know, I didn't have to pay the cover and that's worth at least two stars. By the way, homos, go on and have your kiss-in day at the high class joint, we still win. It's a known fact that a certain heterosexual once got busy in a Burger King bathroom. I used to believe that homos were just regular people who liked to have sex with people of the same sex. Now I'm beginning to see that homos are just big fucking crybabies who can't get over the names they were called in Junior High. I'm thinking "faggy crybaby queerbate pussy" was probably thrown their way once or twice, and you know what? Obviously they deserve it. And another thing, if you're NOT a homo? Fuck off with the "hate" bullshit. You're not going to get laid off of it, and it makes you sound queer.
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Cumberland Gap

8/06/2012

 
With the new scout.

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Now that the high water mark has passed...

8/03/2012

Should I join Facebook? (This has nothing to do with my raging mid-life crisis or the boycott of my myspace page by the unholy alliance of Glen Frey fans and New Yorkers. But just so you know New York, there is no possible way to ignore the smell of old garbage cooking in 100 degree heat while you are trying to eat what is supposedly a "fantastic" meal. Can't be done. I suppose that's why half of you don't shower and the other half bathe in AXE. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't have a problem if Glenn Frey moved to New York and bathed in AXE or garbage, as long as he keeps his "music" and his stank to himself. It'd also be nice if he took out that other asshole from the Eagles in a murder suicide... what's his name, the hypocritical, money grubbing, dick eating douchebag who sings that goddamn song about the Motel 8? Whatever, that one.)
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Oh dear...

I'm in lust. With this:
Don't judge. I know it's bad for me. I know it will end in heartbreak and tears and a persistent itch in places better unnamed, but... I do need a new car... It's possible... I mean, almost certain... that she has issues from a previous relationship. She will rob me blind and alienate my family... eventually. On the other hand... just look at that body. ooooooooooooooooooo. Recaro seats... six piston brembo brakes... 500 horses... My T5 caught me looking, and on a day when I fed her 87 octane too. She's not speaking to me, and I really have to change her oil. Plus, you know, she's going to have to give me a ride over there so I can check out the new girl. It's all innocent, of course. I would never do anything. That would be stupid. I mean really. As if there's a difference between 6 seconds to 60 and 3.9 seconds to 60. I mean, why would you need 511 pound feet of torque when you already have 300? I know somebody already paid for that... and paid a lot to keep her in that shape. Why shouldn't I take advantage of that? Right? So I don't have a great history with the flashy types... I know we won't agree on anything... but she makes that noise... ooooooooooooooooooo... I just wanna look. Right? I won't touch a thing. Just a discussion, no flirting, all business, just being friendly and curious. Besides, I know the volvo will like her, they have a lot in common... ooooooooooooooo This is not good.
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