Only One Left

I know you are caught in a dilemma, “Do I purchase this pic or do I wait for the next exclusive offering?”  There is one “Melancholy” pic left and I have started work on the next picture.  ALL proceeds go to the American Diabetes Association Tour de Cure…..not 10%, not 50%….100% goes to the ADA. 


I Resolved To Not Make Resolutions

Are we friends?  I mean are we friends in the modern odd way that people are friends now?  I am of course speaking of the parallel universe that exists just outside the parameters of our very own physical existence….Facebook.  If we aren’t we should be and you should also do a wee search on the ol’ Facebook machine for a little page called 100poundsago and you should most definitely click “Like” on that rascal.  I threw out a dare right before New Years saying it “Would be rad if 100poundsago could get 100 fans by 2011.”  Some folks were added but not even close to 100 so get on it people!

 I have a few e-mails in my inbox asking “How was the Polar Rhino Ride?”  My immediate rebuttal has been “I guess it was fine, didn’t make it this year.  I started out the New Year puking my shoes off.”  This of course is not even in close proximity to how I actually wanted to spend News Years Day or several days following.  I wanted to go on that dang ride dangit!  I wanted to go bad too.  For crying out loud it was 45 degrees that day, which alone is a welcome respite from the winter doldrums.  Nay!  In bed I laid shivering and miserable secretly cursing everyone on the ride because I was bitter that I could not be.  So if you got a flat or some other form of cycling atrocity on the ride I apologize it was my fault.  If you have been a reader for a while you will remember on the 2010 ride I beat myself up pretty bad I opined about stagnation in weight loss among many other complaints about myself.  I was going to use the ride this year as a time to reflect over the 2010 cycling year, oh well I’m flexible reflection can be done anywhere I suppose.

 I have also more than a few E-mails asking what my “Resolutions” are or where?  Honestly I don’t make them, haven’t in years.  I use to make them, for example, “I am going to stop smoking in 1994…the same one was made in 95, and 96, 97 98, 99, 2000, 01, 02…you get the point right?  Each year it was an abysmal failure, each resolution lasted until about noon on January 1 when I would run out and buy a carton of cigarettes and chain smoke the New Years in.   It’s a societal joke really, they are expected to fail there is really no pressure to actually succeed at them.  They are in reality forgotten about and breezed by no guilt attached.  I make goals for myself and have done so for the past few years I break them down to small manageable and realistic benchmarks.  Will I be challenged to reach them, yes most definitely but therein lays the fun.   Let me give you an example:  I got it into my head not too long ago that I wanted to run a 5k.  Now if you know me you know I despise running with every thread of my being.  So what did I have to do?  I had to build up to it, I know I would have failed if I laced up some running shoes and tried to run a 5k.  I did the “Couch to 5k” program.  Each day building on the last until bingo bongo you just busted out 5k’s worth of pavement pounding which I did and I am pretty sure it was the furthest I have ever run in my life.  5k….check!  Now on to the next one.  Not resolutions….goals. 

 What are your goals today, or this week, or this month?  Leave some comments, lets discuss.

Slumber, Trainer, Or Just Ride

I don’t know where you live….ok I actually do know where some of you live but I digress. Where I live winter is here, has been here, is going to be here for many a month to come. It’s an undeniable fact, the mercury has fallen sometimes to the negative side of zero, the winds will blow, and there will be snow. You of the cycling variety in the frozen tundra areas have done one of three things.

1. You have put your bike on the hooks and tucked it in for a long winter slumber.
2. Trainers and rollers have been dug out of basements, closets, attics and garages for a full winter of mindless …um…train-er-ing, or roller-er-ing
3. You embrace the nonsense that is negative temps, layer it up and ride on anyway.

I think I may have thrown out this challenge before but I am not sure and I certainly do not feel like searching through this site and the posts to see if I have or not. If I did forgive me for warming up last winters leftovers, if I have not I take full credit for the genius. Who cares how or where you ride, just ride!

I prefer to ride despite the temps; trainer and rollers bore me to the brink of homicidal madness. I have found that I am not the only one either, there are other maniacs out there on a daily basis slogging through the slop to either get to where they need to go or for health and fitness sake.

While I am on the subject, if indeed I am on a subject, let’s talk Christmas shall we. I just saw a commercial for McDonalds extolling the virtues of giving your trash guy or mailman a McDonalds gift certificate….I guess you could if you really hate your trash guy or mailman that much. I mean noting says I hate you like a gift certificate for a free meal of fat, cholesterol, high blood pressure and so pumped with chemicals they had to add to the periodic table to accommodate the nastiness. Whilst giving them a gift is all fine and good I am adding a few people this year to the “Nice” list and I think you should to, especially if you rely on them as much as I do. Your local bike shop! I know I love mine, this is the place they know my name, ask how I have been, and have kept a bike underneath my buttocks without hesitation. Repairs are done with the speed and skill unlike any I have ever seen.

So my LBS is getting a gift this year. What you ask? You see soon enough. How about you add them to your list of people that at minimum get a card?

Turning Negative Into Positive

In what ways does a positive attitude affect you?   I am of the firm opinion that it can, does and will affect you in a myriad of different ways.  I am pretty much guilty of always pointing out the negative, what started as a small annoying habit has turned into years of negativity.  I read through some of the posts here and I think to myself…”sheesh, what a pessimist!”  Some of those posts I have never published some where and serve as a constant reminder of “look at the good Gene!” Although its not strictly pessimism, rather a list of demands placed on myself in which I can never achieve…leading to yet more negative feelings and finding the flaws in everything.  A vicious circle it is, and if you have ever been caught in it you know of which circle I speak.  The slowly building vortex of negativity that quickly clouds even the clearest of visions and drags you further into the tunnel vision of negativity.  I was reading in a church newspaper recently about a challenge a pastor threw down about thanks, wherein he challenged the congregation to write down each day 3 things they where thankful for and to repeat daily for 30 days.  There was one caveat; you had to come up with 3 new things a day.   Since we are approaching that time of year where we all should focus on what we are thankful for I find this a good segue into changing negativity into positivity (not a word) and reverse my normal thought process to that which I am thankful. 

It would be easy to take all of the credit and accolades that are thrown upon me for losing weight, I mean after all I am the one that tortured myself on the road sitting atop that wee little seat, pedal stroke after endless pedal stroke.  Sweat, tears, vomit, Gestapo like dietary self demands, blood and in a case or two injury…they are all my doing right?  NO!  While I am the face of what I did the body is a laundry list of others who should take their turn in the limelight for they have never once been listed here.

From time to time I come up with near insane ideas, they span from odd vacation plans to the most absurd tattoo anyone has ever seen….I say insane because to me they are crazy after some thought, to one particular person they are not really that crazy.  Who is this facilitator of the insane you inquire?  My wife, she who never batted an eye at the mention of me converting my diet to strict vegetarian.  She who offered to plan out, shop and prepare all of the meals I would need.  She who for nearly two years has never complained about anything I needed or wanted….patched my gear, had hot coffee ready when I finished riding in the dead of winter and has supported me every step of the way.  Thanks Babe!

Frostbite and Sunburn

Has it really been a week since I have updated this site?  Apparently yes it has.  I know how you all hang on my every post, follow me like disciples and feverishly read and digest every word I write like it was a great prognostication telling of future fortunes and greatness.  I have let you down making you wait a week for any of my wise tidings.  My most humble apologies and may the fleas from a thousand camels infest my armpits!

 After months of waiting we Michiganders are in that time of year that delicately balances upon “I wore too much riding” or “Sheesh I didn’t wear enough”  it’s a tough time of year for we noble people that call the “Mitten” home we are seemingly always in a state of weather related flux.  I mean seriously how many people out there have to wear 3 distinct outfits for riding…at the same time?  There is a saying here in the Great Lakes State….if you don’t like the weather wait 5 minutes it will change.  It is not uncommon for you to start out in winter riding gear and by the end of your ride you are in summer gear.  You think I am lying…ask around.  People from Michigan will regale you with stories of sunburn and frost bite that occurred on the same day.   I have to relearn my dressing tactics from last year and have not quite got it down “just so” yet having spent Saturday sweating profusely and Sunday a shivering frozen mess.  I am in the process of writing a “How to Survive Michigan Cycling” guide that I will be posting on the site very soon.  As usual it will be chock full of sarcasm and hilarity. 

In other news I was asked to do something truly AWESOME last week!  What you ask?  I will tell you once it goes public and official but it has to do with the American Diabetes Association.  Needless to say 2011 is going to be an awesome year around these parts. 

 Stay tuned and stay away from the Halloween candy!!!!!!

P.S. The word “Michiganders” is not corrected in spellcheck….which gives us from Michigan some Street Cred.

Why My Kit Is Better Than Yours

Saturdays ride started like any other autumn ride, check the tires, throw a little lube on the chain, fill the bottle and toss the snack in the jersey pocket.  I say it started the same but about 2 miles in something truly odd happened…a wave….by another cyclist.  He was fully kitted out in all matchy swag.  I nearly fell over; I reluctantly threw my hand in the air to return the wave.  Then a little further down the road yet another, this time from a jogger?  I was dumbfounded until I realized the reason they where probably waving was the kit I was wearing which is by far quite possibly the raddest kit this side of the Pyrenees.  A kit that demands respect and admiration from all who lay eyes upon it a kit that simply yet sternly says “the wearer of this kit rules the planet on a whole different level” just what is this mysterious yet magical set of cycling awesomeness you ask?  Well it was hand delivered to me on Thursday and you can see it below. 

This jersey is reserved for rad people who raise a silly amount of money for the ADA Tour De Cure
The matching shorts....notice how my legs look instantly more superior and my butt looks absolutely breathtaking.

Alternate Xtracycle Ads Part II

You will of course remember that my first alternate ad for Xtracycle was “Because you just never know when you may run across a treasure you feel you can’t live without”

Here is the second one:
“Xtracycle…for when you find the next item your wife wont let you keep in the house”

Found this beauty last week

Carbon Fiber Water?

I was straightening up the garage yesterday and I placed my bikes against the wall so I could do a little sweep up near where they usually rest.  Seeing my older bike right next to my newer bike it became oddly clear to me that you don’t have to be fancy, you don’t have to have the full matching kit which in turn matches your bike which matches your socks which matches your brake pads…on and on ad nausea.  When I started riding I would ride on the sidewalk, wearing tennis shoes, on a 10 year old mountain bike, with monster bar ends, wearing cotton shorts, cotton t-shirt and a baseball hat turned backwards.  I will tell you the Gods honest truth, it worked.  I lost the majority of my weight riding late at night or early in the morning in that exact outfit with that bike that I affectionately called “El Chupacabra”.  No fancy shoes, no breathable fabrics, no wicking socks, no lycra, no helmet it was just me a fat guy, a bike and a whole lot of sweat and cursing.  I hear you now “Gene, will you ever so kindly get to the point please Judge Judy is about to start and I am bored with your ramblings.”  Dear readers, if you think you need a fancy bike, carbon soled shoes, lycra head to toe, and the biggest ticket bike you cant really afford but purchase anyway, well you are sorely mistaken.  Sure you can have all of the nice components, the carbon fiber water (yup I just said carbon fiber water) the sleekest machine to roll off the line this month, it might even help you eek out a few seconds on your club ride…but in reality who really cares.  I started riding not with the foolish ambition of being a racer I rode to simply lose weight and I found through experience that pretty much anyone can do it regardless of what brand name graces your down tube.  Get a bike, any bike that works, AND GO RIDE!

“El Chupacabra”

Hey Check It Out!

One of my absolute favorite cycling/ commuter websites is  a site that I read daily like it’s a religious obligation.  I have gleaned a ton of useful information from them about everything from tires to lights.  Currently on they are running a Commuter Profile about me!  Go check them out and put them on your favorites list.

Profile can be found HERE

This Is What I Am Talking About

This “Rocket Surgeon” was published in the Opinion section of a local newspaper yesterday:
When Bike Paths are Present Bike Riders Should Use Them
To answer the writer of “Motorists must allow bicyclists leeway” driving in Bloomfield and West Bloomfield on weekends is no fun.  The “wannabe Lance Armstrong’s” are taking over the narrow roads.  There is often no leeway other then crossing over to the wrong side of the road following a bicycle at its speed!  There are miles and miles of bicycle paths built for motorless vehicles.  These weekend bike enthusiasts completely ignore what was built for their safety.  If there are bicycle paths, the bike riders should have to use them or be ticketed.

Susanne (last name omitted by Gene)
Waterford Township 

Please, allow me to retort:

West Bloomfield has exactly 4.25 miles of these so called “bike paths”  in a city that is over 30 square miles I would dare call this “inadequate”  wouldn’t you agree?

My Heart Is Still In Seattle

It is possible to be in love with a city?  I can answer unequivocally, Yes.  At best I “like” the city I live in, I say at best because on a good day that’s  as deep as my feelings run for my fair town but to go somewhere like I did last week and completely fall in love to the point I felt nauseous that I had to leave…well that’s love.   What made me love it so you ask?  What didn’t make me fall in love will be my response.  For consideration of time and effort I will stick to the topics that relate best to this site, namely cycling and healthy eating.  Never, I say again, NEVER have I ever even heard or seen a city or a region that is so bike friendly.  Bike lanes, bike paths, bike racks, on and on it goes the whole region seems to have acquiesced to the fact that people are going to ride their bikes places, to be forward thinking in that respect is amazing to go one step further and accommodate people in that venture is something legendary.   I could not have swung a dead skunk in any street I was on last week without hitting a cyclist.  Serious riders, commuters, families, old, young, ugly, attractive you name it there is someone from their demographic on a bike somewhere.  The regions corporate world seems to even be on board with it as well.  My brother in law ran down all of the benefits he receives if he commutes by bike to work…my jaw dropped.  Legendary I say!

Now with this new found love comes a bit of resentment, I resent the fact that I am forced to have a long distance relationship with this new found paradise.  I am resentful of the fact that one of the small suburbs boasted 31 miles of cycling paths, comparatively speaking the county I live in brags about 30 miles.  My suggestion to Oakland County…stop bragging, we suck. 

Should I even start talking about the food situation out there?  Yes I shall.   I feel on most days that I have to almost apologize for following a Vegan diet.  Like it is such an inconvenience to any place I go that most days I question whether or not it’s even worth it.  Not this place, I was accepted, embraced, snuggled and coddled like a new born babe.  I found a cornucopia of places to eat, people to chat with, dishes to be had and thoroughly enjoyed.  On several occasions the Vegan side of the menu was larger that the non Vegan side and it was not just a salad either.  I was and still am amazed. 

 Seattle how I love thee, let me count the ways.

Beach Cycling in S.C.

I bet you where not even aware that I had escaped the “Mitten” for a few days where you?  Unless you where following my randomly malicious Facebook updates concerning run ins with TSA and the endless delays of Delta airlines you would have no idea…cause I didn’t tell anyone!  Anyway, since this is a cycling blog of sorts I suppose I should regale  you all with the health and cycling scene in S.C.  more specifically Myrtle Beach.  First let me make this bold claim…Myrtle Beach just may be the most unhealthy place on the planet when it comes to eating both the restaurant scene and the grocery scene.   Since we where staying in a house on the beach we had access to a kitchen and all of the cooking amenities.  What good are amenities if you have nothing to prepare?  So off to the local grocery we go where apparently “Beer” counts as a vegetable and a “Corn Fed Slab of Beef” counts as a veggie burger and “Pop-Tarts” count as fruit.  I even had to invent a meal at a restaurant due to their lack of anything resembling a vegan meal.  It consisted of a side of rice, a side of steamed veggies and a baked potato all mixed together into my own concoction of dinner.  It was an adventure I had no intention of taking but was forced to.  

We flew down there and in case you have not noticed airlines charge an inordinate amount of money to check any luggage, I didn’t even want to know what it was going to cost to get one of my bikes down there since it was $45 to check my suitcase.  Luckily we found a bike shop on the beach that rented bikes by the hour, half day or day.  The selection was limited, for adults there was a green beach cruiser or a green beach cruiser with a child seat.  For kids there was a pink beach cruiser or some hybrid 3 wheeled recumbent type mutation.  Helmets and locks where complimentary and the prices where actually very reasonable.  If you ever find yourself in North Myrtle beach sans a bike and you think you absolutely cannot survive without one you should check out the The Bike Doctor….oddly the guy who is the “Bike Doctor” actually walks around in surgical scrubs and the two women behind the counter refer to each other as “Nurse”   for instance “Please go tell Nurse Susan you need a different lock.”  I kid you not folks.  The Bike Doctor also has an impressive showroom full of bikes and a ton of parts and accouchement for your cycling pleasure. 

About to attack the beach with the bikes


The boy and the "bike" he put at least 4,000 miles on


The girl and the pink beach cruiser (with complimentary helmet)


Under a pier


Me on the green beach cruiser....take note of the serious cycling sock tanline




All of The Bike Doctors "Patients" so to speak?


Its Hotter Than Hell Cakes Out there

If it’s as hot where you are as it is where I am with temps creeping up on the 100’s you need to take some precautions especially if you are cycling in this crap….which if you are as demented as I am you are. Stay safe out there folks.

Just a bit of advice from your friendly neighborhood fireman on how to excercise in the heat:
-Increase your fluid intake. By consuming hydrating liquids throughout the day, prior to, during the activity–every twenty minutes–and after exercising, you will prevent dehydration and regulate your body temperature. Dehydration is your worst enemy. If the weather is hotter or more humid than you’re acclimated to, drink more fluids, even if you aren’t thirsty.
-Adjust the schedule of your exercise regimen. The prime schedule for exercise is before 10 a.m. or after 3 p.m., especially if the temperature is rising and humidity is high.
-Refuel your muscles with nutritious foods. It’s just as important to monitor what you eat as to increase your fluid intake. Heat often decreases the appetite, but it’s imperative to consume plenty of fruits, vegetables and grains.
-Know when to quit. Pay attention to the warning signs of your body. If you begin to feel the effects of heat exhaustion, immediately cease your exercising and find somewhere to cool down.
-Avoid consumption of caffeinated beverages because they can cause dehydration due to their diuretic factor.
-Stay away from wearing darker colors and tight clothing that soak in the heat while exercising during summer.

Signs and Symptoms of Heat Stroke:
-Heatstroke is a condition that can occur when your body temperature raises above 104 degrees F. Often occurring in the extreme heat or when there is too much physical activity done in the heat, you should know the signs of heatstroke so that you can recognize it in yourself and others. It can be a potentially life threatening disease, and the faster that you treat it, the better your odds are that you’ll recover.
Depending on the type of heatstroke that you have, you may notice a change in the way that you sweat. If your heatstroke was brought on by heat alone, then your skin will be hot and dry, with no sweat at all. If your heatstroke was brought on by physical activity, then your skin will be both hot and moist. You should sweat in the heat, but too much or too little sweat can be a sign of heatstroke.
Rapid Heartbeat
If you are afraid you might have heatstroke, take a moment to feel your pulse. A pulse of about 130 beats per minute is much too fast for the regular 60 to 100 beats per minute that an adult’s rate should be at. The elevated rate means your body is working so much harder to cool off.
Look for signs of weakness, listlessness or unresponsiveness in someone who you think might have heatstroke. Heatstroke can cause a person to lose strength and feel tired. Their muscles might also be sore and cramped.
Neurological Signs
Those with severe heatstroke might suffer from seizures, fainting, lost consciousness or may become incoherent and unable to understand others when they are speaking. If this is the case, get the patient to a health care facility

Dusty Car Project….Cont.

You remember that I am running the Dusty Car Project right?  If not you can get the info here.   I have been not only commuting back and forth to work religiously since June 13, I have also been riding nearly everywhere on a bike since then.  When I am riding somewhere I cant help but to feel sorry for my car…how lonely it must feel sitting in the driveway.  Oh well I say, I have no intention on going back to driving everywhere anytime soon because there is simply no point to it.  I have tracked and added all of the numbers from the Garmin and to be honest I was a little stunned at the totals.  Here they are and remember this is since June 13 only and commuting only:

Miles:  405.7
Calories: 11,051!


I was never a Boy Scout but I do, given my profession, understand the concept of “Always Prepared” or I think that’s the Boy Scout motto?  Anyway, I was caught not once but twice with my pants down this week…..(wait that came out wrong given the fact that “pants down” and “Boy Scout” was mentioned in the same paragraph!!!)  Ok, I was caught unprepared…that’s better!  One was a bona fide injury type thing (someone else not me) that I happened across on a limestone trail system and the second was a flat a ghastly distance from my house with no spare tube, no patch kit, and no inflator.  The tire thing was totally my fault; I deserve that one and will take it as a lesson learned.  Too many times I have gambled on air filled tires for the duration of my rides.  Believe you me now there is a seat kit filled with all kinds of rubber repair and replacement goodies.

The injury thing, I could very nearly kick myself for being caught in the open with nary a bandage or a latex glove within 10 miles of my grimy hands.  Do you know what they call a highly trained Firefighter/ EMS/ Haz-Mat/ Tech Rescue/ WMD dude such as me when you are sans any equipment to treat or render aid to an injured person?  LAME!  That’s what you call them and I was the reigning King holding court over the Kingdom of Lamery that day my friends.   Not again on my watch folks NOT AGAIN ON MY WATCH!!  I now have a smallish kit that’s super light yet highly effective for injured parties I may come across or heaven forbid may need myself.  Its super light and takes up very little space and can even be tucked away in a rear jersey pocket.  I will crack off a few pics and post them tomorrow when I get off duty. 

 Please for the love of Sam…wear your helmets!

Dusty Car Project- UPDATE

The “Dusty Car Project” lasted a lot longer than I thought and to be honest I was making a good run at a week without needing a car.  Interestingly it was a bike that undid the entire experiment.  Allow me to esplain (please use Ricky accent for the previous mis-spelling of explain).   I decided to fix up my brothers bike, so I drop it off about a week and a half ago for a complete overhaul.  New rims, tubes, tires, cables, etc etc.  I get the call yesterday afternoon that it is complete and ready for pick up.  Only thing is I am watching my youngest and simply cannot figure out a way to get both of us there and pick up a bike at the same time.  I had to begrudgingly locate my car keys and take the walk of shame out to the grey beast to ….drive…..ugh….to the shop to pick up the bike.   Its goes to show you though that you probably should not brag to your neighbor that you have gone 6 days without using a car, because sure as crap you are going to be forced to do so that very same day. 

All was not lost though while at the shop I was able to check out my next purchase of a rear rack and some panniers. 

 I have told you about this dude right?  Yeah I know for a fact I have, he lost an astounding amount of weight (230 lbs to be exact) he wrote a particularly poignant post yesterday about failure.  If you are trying to cut some pounds and you are a little down on yourself you need to read this.  I am not even bull-crappin folks.

Dusty Car Project

I decided to run an experiment and see how many days I could go without driving my car anywhere. If I need to go somewhere I hop on a bike.  So far I am on day 3 and not missing my car at all.  I have decided that in the name of science and health I am going to track how many calories I burn in a week of commuting.   I also have a new resident in my garage check it out the new “Urban-Commuter-Assault-Unit” this is what I have been using as my commuter bike:
KHS Solo-One
Could it be? Could it be a single speed?
Yup, it's a single speed

Tour De Cure Report

The Ride:
Course was hilly as poop!  I looked at the elevation via MapMyRide and it looked quite flat with perhaps one smallish climb toward the end.  I am calling “Shenanigans” because it was far from flat it was a barrage of one climb after another even one climb that had another climb on top of it.  I am not complaining about the hills though because what fun would an easy ride be?  I will complain however about the condition of these roads in “The Mitten” ….they suck.  That’s no fault of the ADA though so I don’t blame them.  You would honestly be hard pressed to find any route in this state with glassy smooth rollin surface.  Essentially I suppose it’s not actually about the ride, or the course, or the shirts, or even the free swag you collect along the way through the event.  It’s about the money and trying to fight a disease.  This being my first, and certainly not my last, ride for a cause I was a little taken back by the vibe of the whole event.  It seemed that all of the cyclists there put away their anti-waving and anti-speaking uber hardcore guy or gal persona for the day and actually socialized a wee little bit.  I talked to a few people out on the course waved to a few and even threw out a fine knuckle bump with an exploding finish. 

Pictures to Prove It:
Everyone, including me, is going to have to wait for pics from the event.  My plan was to simply carry my camera phone in my jersey and crack a gaggle of pics before during and after the ride, however, unbeknownst to me phones do not fair too well when you carry them into a house fire with you….especially if the phone is in the outer pocket of your turnout gear….who knew right?  Luckily some of my teammates had cameras and took some shots including some team shots.  As soon as they put their doughnuts down I will get them up.

Meeting Awesome People:
Do you know why I like hanging around Charity events and participating in them….THE PEOPLE!  The people that go to an event like the ADA Tour de Cure are generally 99.999% awesome genuine caring people the other .oo1% are terminal buttholes and will never be happy but I digress.  Call it luck, fate, kismet, karma, dogma, pragmatic existentialism but it just so happens I met two of the most radtastic people after the ride.  Jodi and Jon go to their sites and read the stories, they lost a crap load of weight and I mean an honest to God crap load.  Nice people too you should check them out….if you don’t you suck.

Being on an Awesome Team:
We pretty much rocked everyone’s faces off of their skulls.  We came in second only to the official “Red Riders Team” as far as money collected as a team.  I am not going to throw stones or anything but there where 6 of us and we raised a ton o’ money only to be beat out by a team with about 25 people on it.  We are claiming victory on a per capita basis.

Fundraising Facebook Style

So in order to collect as much money as possible for Tour de Cure I essentially used shame, embarrassment, comedy, idle threats, and insane meaningless chatter.  I used all this on Facebook, interestingly for getting such a bad media rap it proved to be a very beneficial tool in raising money.  By my best “guesstimate” I would venture a guess that somewhere in the neighborhood of 93.99765% of the money raised was done so by people visiting my personal donation page directly from a Facebook link.  It’s not that I simply posted a link over and over again (well actually I did just that) it’s that I posted it with something else of interest…or dis-interest you pick.  Here are some of the badgering methods I used, I copied and pasted directly from my Facebook profile:

1.  If you donate I will tell you whats under the kilt!
2. Can you smell that? It’s the smell of $1500.00 for my Tour de Cure…..please give I am almost there!
3. Donate to Tour de Cure and I will you send you a 8×10 glossy of me in Lycra…..autographed for an added bonus!
4. After doing some Geographical research I have decided that my East Coast friends have given more money than my West Coast friends….we can also Rap better!
5. Give or your Birthday is cancelled this year!
6. Give or you are forever banished from my Christmas Card list….and you run the risk of me streaking your Christmas Party!
7. Donate to Tour de Cure or one very nekkid Gene is going to show up at your Memorial Day BBQ…..I got a fresh new supply of body paint and body glitter, I aint even Bull Crappin folks!!!!!
8. It’s a proven fact that when you donate to Tour de Cure your IQ goes up and you are much more attractive to the opposite sex. If you don’t you are just a plain butt ugly buffoon.
9. Give to Tour de Cure or I will streak your next Birthday Party, Family BBQ, Choir Concert, Baptism, Open House, Wedding, Funeral, Bar-mitzvah, or Block Party with your name written in body paint across my chest and wearing body glitter. Dont think I wont either!
10. If you have told me a secret in the last 25 years I will make your secret public on Facebook for all to see unless you donate to my ride! I aint even kidding here folks!
11. Donations have grinded to a halt over the past few days. Donate to Tour de Cure….all the cool kids are doing it!
12. Still plenty of room on the “Wall of Awesomeness” for donating to Tour de Cure. Donate, go on the wall, and be the envy of all of your friends.
13. I am now beating the cop, but only by $1.00…need to bolster up my lead over this clown. Who feels like opening the pocket book today? I am up to $981.00 and the team is up to $2441.00 which makes us 2nd over all.
14. I am currently losing to a COP in my Tour de Cure donation amount! Are you guys going to let me come in second place to a COP?!?!?!?
15. Who wants to help me raise some dollars for Diabetes? I am the one that has to ride my bike all you have to do is donate. Pretty Please?

Just A Quick Update

As of 3 1/2 seconds ago we are up to $630.00 for Tour de Cure!  I say we because without the help of some INCREDIBLY generous readers of this blog I would not even be close to that.  While I am in a heated battle with one of the cops on the team (all in good fun) he is still ahead of me by several hundred dollars.  I may resort to blackmail to raise enough money to beat him.  Our team “Brothers-N-Blue”  currently sits in second place on the leader board for collected totals for our event!  How rad is that!  Fully rad I say.

Its All Part Of My Secret Evil Plan

My donations have slowed down a bit and as of this post  I am up to $425.00 .  While sitting in school this morning I devised a plan so evil, so sinister I am sure I will have to face the “Big Guy” at the pearly gates for it.  Do you know any firefighters?  I mean besides me?  Here is the thing,  we are fiercely loyal to our Stations.  Where I work we have 5 stations and each is manned by about the same number of people, furthermore each station has a certain nickname which lends to a certain Esprit de Corps of the individual stations.  Now,  I will finish the story…I started playing one station against the others…only I am playing them all against each other by saying things like “The Island says they can collect more than The 5 House”  and “The Island says they have already beaten The Big House and they say you knuckledraggers at The Big House aint worth a dang!”  and “The Cabin has you all smoked and they are going up on the wall of awesomeness!”  Whats can top that you ask?  The fact that there are 3 different shifts so that means 3 different competitions for bragging rights is going to happen. 

Do you see where I am going with this?

Red Rider….and NOT the BB Gun That Will Shoot Your Eye Out

Just got the word that I am going to be able to ride the Tour de Cure as a “Red Rider” which means I have Diabetes….or more accurately I used to have Type 2 diabetes until I started cycling my butt off and lost a whole gaggle of weight. I think I will bring a sharpie marker and scribble out the “I Ride With Diabetes…” to “I beat Diabetes Like a Rented Stepchild” when they give me my red jersey.  What do you guys think?

My New Club….And I need Your Money!

    I am fortunate at work because in my city the police dept and the fire dept share an unusually close bond.  Unfortunately, this bond is the exception rather than the rule in the area as I know many police and fire departments do not share closeness with the other badge wearing Brothers in their municipalities.  Through this tight friendship we have formed quite a team with a special focus on fundraising for charities.  While the police have their separate non-profit charity and the fire department does as well it’s a proven fact when we put our heads together we are a force that cannot be rivaled.  We combine several times a year and have in the works many more joint ventures to support and raise money for our prospective charities.  A few examples are our charity Guns-vs-Hoses basketball games, our recent Guns-vs-Hoses charity hockey game and our yearly Police and Firefighter Black Tie Charity Ball.  All of which raise an incredible amount of money for our charities.  What makes these ventures so successful you ask?  Dedication, willingness to give up our free time to work together for something bigger than all of us, and a genuine desire to be around each other and to help each other get to a goal.  I say all of that to tell you this. 

       The other day one of our officers found his way to my office and inquired if I would be interested in joining the “Brothers-N-Blue” cycling club?  After a few questions gave an ecstatic “Oh Yeah!”  This club is made up of Officers from the police department and they have been meeting together and riding for a few months now.  One of the goals (beyond having fun) is to help raise money for charities like The Thin Blue Line and American Diabetes Association.  To put our cycling ability to good use and help raise some funds for worthy causes.  It’s a bona fide club complete with by-laws and officers and regularly scheduled rides and meetings.  I was recruited and I joined up right away.  Part of the reason I joined is, well, they are the police from my city and proven “Stand Up Guys” the second reason is the first event I will be taking part in on the new club is the Tour De Cure.   You may or may not recall I beat Type 2 Diabetes by cycling my butt off and losing weight, reversing what would have been a life long debilitating disease.  The third reason is Bob and Patricia…who the holy hell cakes are Bob and Patricia you ask?  Bob is my dad who passed away in October who had Type 2 Diabetes and died because of complication of Diabetes and Patricia is my Grandmother who has also passed away and had Type 1 Diabetes.

     The first event is June 5, 2010 for the American Diabetes Association Tour De Cure in Brighton, Michigan.  I am joining the event late so I need to raise some cabbage fast and that is where you come in by donating money directly to the American Diabetes Association via my personal page HERE.  To add a cherry to the top of this I will be holding a drawing (idea blatantly stolen from another blogger) for all who donate for a seriously sweet swag grab bag .Money is due on May 20, 2010 all entries received by midnight EST on May 19, 2010 will be eligible for the drawing.

  1. Prize is a huge grab-bag of uber sweet swag but will absolutely include an I-Pod shuffle and other items of varying awesomeness.
  2. Each 5$ donation will earn you one virtual raffle ticket, 10$ gets you two etc etc. 
  3. Friends and family bonus….if you refer someone to this page and they donate money have them drop the dime on you via email and you both just earned a bonus ticket for the drawing. 

 GO HERE AND DONATE…pretty please?!?!?!?



My Secret Happy Place

I found a new spot to ride and by far its my most favoritist (totally a word) what makes me love it so is its near desolate nature.  I rode it on Wednesday and I saw one other person in 30 miles.  Minimal road crossing, lots of winding lazy turns, delicious solitude, great views….a really nice trail to clear your head.  Its part of the Oakland County Trail System which includes the Paint Creek Trail, The Clinton River Trail and now my favorite the Polly Ann Trail.  If you’re in the neighborhood you should definitely check it out. 

You cant see them in this picture but there are signs at road crossings that direct users of the trail to things like restrooms, snacks, and emergency medical treatment. A really nice addition to the trail system.
Glorious solitude

New (old) Pics of the 2010 Polar Rhino Ride

So I was digging through the Kinetic Systems website and happened across some pics I never saw from the January 1, 2010 Polar Rhino Ride.  I posted one of the pics when I went on my long diatribe on my 2009 weight loss failure.  Here are some more and I promise I am in a much better mood now.  I know all of you warm weather folks are insane with jealousy over our snow, try to maintain your composure. 

This is a pic of Lane and I after we got signed in. Lane is a neighbor of my moms that I know. I didnt know he was participating in the ride, it was good to have at least one person I knew there.
(from left to right) Me, Lane, and some dude I dont know.
Getting ready to start the insanity.
Somehow I got caught in the limbo between the really fast riders and the slower riders which left me by myself for a few miles.
Ahhh yes notice how toasty warm my feet look rockin those Sidi winter shoes....and the Oakleys (R.I.P)

Health Benefits of Properly Chosen Fruits and Vegetables

I thought I would share with youze guyz a mini-essay I had to write the other day for a class.  Anybody wanna guess what grade I got? 

Health Benefits of Properly Chosen Fruits and Vegetables

      It is an inarguable fact that fruits and vegetables provide essential vitamins and nutrients when added to a well balanced diet.  Recent studies are proving that Americans are eating more fruit and vegetables than were consumed ten years ago.  What is surprising is Americans are not eating the proper fruits and vegetables or the ones with the greatest impact on health and well being.  The difference between proper and improper fruit and vegetable choices is vast and misunderstood.  Even though half of Americans are meeting the anticipated recommendations by health advocacy agencies, statistically speaking, most are unaware of what constitutes a good fruit and vegetable choice and the long term health implications of making that choice.  Some examples of good fruit and vegetable choices are broccoli, kale, peas, tomatoes, cantaloupe, blueberries and prunes.

     Two of the three most eaten vegetables in America have minute to no nutritional value and in the case of the number three vegetable, French-fried potatoes, they could actually be detrimental because of the needless fat content. Americans should be choosing fruits and vegetables high in anti-oxidants, vitamins, and flavanoids which have demonstrated the ability to prevent and decrease the risk of heart attack, stroke, and certain forms cancers.  Other health benefits are derived from increasing fruit and vegetable consumption as well.  For example: vegetables high in vitamin C and E can prevent cataracts, fruits that have high potassium content can decrease blood pressure and women who increase daily fruits and vegetables can prevent osteoporosis.  A well-controlled diet study of 459 men and women showed that eating 8 to 10 servings a day of fruits and vegetables reduced blood pressure in people with and without high blood pressure (Brody 2001). 

     Adding beneficial fruits and vegetables into a daily diet is quite simple if the proper choices are made to achieve the suggested five to nine servings per day. A serving is six ounces of fruit or vegetable juice, one medium apple, banana or orange, a cup of raw greens, or a half-cup of cooked vegetables or cut-up raw vegetables or cut-up or cooked fruit (Brody 2001). 

     With planning and proper evaluation, fruits and vegetables that will proffer the greatest health benefits can be easily and readily added into a typical diet.  What are not addressed are the diet restraints of certain medical conditions such as Diabetes, Crones, Irritable Bowel Syndrome [IBS] and food allergies. These conditions would prohibit some of the fruit and vegetable recommendations listed.  In some instances, like Diabetes, even natural sugars must be avoided to better balance the body’s natural glucose and insulin levels.  In the case of Crones and IBS, some fruits and vegetables may need to be avoided as not to exacerbate the medical condition.

     In conclusion, Americans are making poor choices when given the opportunity to eat nutritionally sound and beneficial fruits and vegetables.  A seemingly effortless addition of a small portion of fruits and vegetables is not being adhered to despite the obvious and highly publicized studies backing the claims of long term health benefits and disease prevention.  In order to fully appreciate the positive potential of additional fruits and vegetables Americans must increase their daily consumption of properly chosen fruits and vegetables. 



Brody, J.  (2001, January 2). Eat Your Vegetables! But Choose Wisely.  The New York Times.      

Back On The Road

If you are a Michigan resident I will kindly ask “What the holy hell cakes happened to our nice freakishly warm weather?”  If you are not a Michigan resident please pay no attention to the previous sentence.  Well after a few tweaks here and there, loosen bolt, tighten bolt shimmy shimmy, measure, adjust, tweak a little more…..the Tri-Cross is back in operation and fully road worthy.  Well, nearly 100% road worthy there is in fact some considerable scratches on my brake/ shifter lever and the bar tape on my left drop is looking quite gnarly.  My Garmin took a small beating and my Fat Cyclist jersey has found its way to the trash bin…. other than that the bike and I are good to go.  Do I have plans on replacing the bar tape or the brake/ shifter lever….eventually but I think I will wait until daily cycling does not constitute running the gauntlet that would rival the Khumbu Ice Falls.  Let’s just face it, I was begging for it really, I held my middle finger in the face of fate and good fortune for far too long, had become brash, verbose, arrogant and cocky about my aptitude to ride unscathed through the foul weather.  I get it, I accept this, and now I must move on.  “That’s it right, you’re done for the winter right” they ask me with trepidation in their voices.  “Nay” I yell and I make grandiose gesticulations and even more grandiose claims of “Never surrender” and “I would rather send my frame to smelting before I ride that trainer!”  Which is more or less true because truth be told I will gladly take a concrete face plant over trainer rides anytime…..and this is when I am threatened with psychiatric inpatient therapy.

Top 10 Things To Say When Someone Asks You What Happened To Your Face:

 If you ever try to use your face as a brake pad leaving you with very obvious facial abrasions, lacerations and bruising I suggest the following excuses which sound infinitely more awesome than “I fell on my bike.”

10. Bear attack
9. Bar fight
8. Curling iron accident (made funnier by the fact I shave my head)
7. Meteor hit me in the face
6. Burns received when I was rescuing 3 dozen kids from a burning orphanage
5. Bazooka blast injury
4. Homemade flame thrower gone wrong
3. Rabid penguin attack
2. Jousting accident
1. Necrotizing Fasciitis then quickly say “Now come here and give me a smooch”

An Object In Motion Will Remain In Motion….

…Until he smashes his face into the concrete. 

It started out as a simple enough plan, short on time so a quick 16 mile originating from my house.  Ride, shower, go to meeting at the kids school.  Traffic was…well it was early afternoon traffic so I was plotting and scheming the route that would put me on as many secondary roads as possible.  On the return, about 2 miles away from my house I decided to cut through down a side road and bypass a formidable and inhospitable intersection….and that’s pretty much all I remember.  One second I am riding the next I am on the face down on the ground and in a lot of pain….and there is blood.  I push myself up and stand up and try to survey the scene.  First I take a swipe across my face with my hand and get an immediate report of blood issuing from both my nose and what feels like a laceration under my left eye.  A quick glance down at my coat confirms that I am indeed bleeding.  I start to take a physical inventory of what is hurting I ask for a report from below the waist, knee immediately answers “left knee has sustained some damage sir!  “Brain this is left hip, left hip has sustained a direct hit!  We are still in this one!”  I then ask for a damage assessment from above the waist and left shoulder sounds the claxon of damage “Left shoulder…..cough…..hack….Left Shoulder……gasp…..I’m trying to keep it together…..cant hold on much longer…..hack…..”  Brain to spine, come in spine.  “Brain this is spine took a hell of a twist but we are good to go!” 

I turn my attention to my bike…it’s an ugly scene, the bars are spun grotesquely into and under to the top tube, my shifter is nowhere near where it usually is.  I stand it up and straighten the bars and see a horrid bend to the left side.  Bar tape is ground off on the outside and my Garmin looks like someone took a belt sander to it.  I remount figuring I need to get home and address these injuries before the pain really starts to set in.  The ride home I am glancing all over surveying more and more damage.  Left knee of my Specialized thermal tights are shredded, I can see skin on my left shoulder which means exactly 3 layers of clothing are now trashed including my Team Fat Cyclist jersey.  I have one gear that works, and my rear brake no longer functions.  To really add to the insult another pair of Oakleys has fallen victim, this time my XXX’s are broken.  I limp it to my house and head into the bathroom to inspect my face which took the full brunt of the hit.  I clean all of the dried blood off and am left with a jagged cut and a rapidly swelling cheek.  I strip off the layers and just as I suspected everything except my socks and shoes is damaged more or less beyond repair and I am also looking at a nice healthy collection of road rash on the left side of my body from hip to shoulder…and face.  I shower and get dressed and head out to the garage to check my helmet, and this is precisely when the sick feeling washes over me.  It’s cracked and the outer shell is virtually ground down to the foam over a large section right where the temporal section of my head would have taken the hit had I not been wearing the helmet.  I can only assume I hit a small patch of ice on the road and went down.  Now I have to take the bike in tomorrow to see what the real damage is.  Wear your helmets!

“Sludge X”

Gah!  Looks like someone has been remiss with updating the ol 100 Pounds Ago Website and the guilty shall be called Gene.  There are two possible reasons for this inattentiveness I have shown this site A.  Life has been busy leaving me no time to log in and update or B. There really is nothing all that new going on around here and the lack of anything new and news worthy has left me with bubkis as far as new “stuff”…..SURVEY SAYS….the answer is B.  Outside of a freakish mid winter warm up where the temps have nearly tip toed their way into the 40’s there is absolutely nothing to report here. 

Wait….there is one thing…..I found, and have yet to name, a new form of primordial sludge.  This sludge can be collected by your legs, back, and over your entire frame during a ride it is unknown whether or not this sludge is present all over the country or a limited to Lower Michigan occurrence.  I first noticed this sludge during one of the warmer days as it was hard to miss since I was very nearly covered in head to toe with it.  It’s quasi slimy in consistency and close to perfect black as you can get and has a certain odor, not an unpleasant odor…..just an odor.  I have, as of today, not worked up the courage to provide a taste report and doubt that the taste of this substance lends any credibility to my discovery, you know in the name of science and all.  “Sludge X” as I refer to it has an alarming propensity to rust, in short order, any metal substance it clings to and seems capable of stripping even the most resolute chain lube in no time at all.  Further testing on “Sludge X” will be forthcoming

Amid The Controversy, Garmin Virtual Training Partner Fires Back

If tension was thermal heat, Michigan would be in the grip of an unusual mid winter thaw.  Tensions between Garmin Virtual Training Partner and little known former tubby man Gene Butcher have reached a fervent crescendo.  Garmin Virtual Training Partner issued a written statement on Monday morning which took over 24 hours to translate since it was written in an amalgamation of binary code, HTML, and Java Script.  Garmin Virtual Training Partner calls the accusations made by Butcher “Totally Whack, preposterous, egregious and a blatant attempt to smear my good name.”  Butcher again is calling for testing and a neutral third party to check some disparity in times between he and Garmin Virtual Training Partner.  “Look facts are facts, GVTP has figured a way to manipulate the system…either that or he has mastered String Theory and has found a way to disrupt the time space continuum, I mean he is smart but not that smart so I am sticking with my original claim of cheating either by time or by performance enhancing substances” Butcher again claimed. 

Calls have been placed to some of the premier Physicists in the nation to see if indeed a worm hole could indeed generate the time discrepancies that Butcher is claiming.  Again on Saturday and Sunday Butcher and Garmin Virtual Training Partner had at each other, again on the snow blown winding path simply referred to as “The Springs” for hours they battled it out and at one point where wheel to wheel for the majority of the day until Butcher had an inopportune problem where he had to slow as to avoid striking some cross country skiers.  This allowed Garmin Virtual Training Partner the leverage he needed to cinch the day.  Garmin Training Partner dismissed the incident stating “He didn’t get slowed down he bonked, he is using the skiers as an excuse.”  Garmin Virtual Training Partner is also hurling accusations back at Butcher “The guy only eats fruits and vegetables…is that even permissible?  Is it even safe?”  Since these are unregistered and unsanctioned events there is no governing body that will intercede with this hotly contested series.  “This is unfortunate” Butcher calmly spoke from the warmth of his running vehicle after the race “If we let him get away with this here he will think he can get away with it anywhere.”  Butcher vowed “Absolute vindication, either through investigation or through the decimation of Garmin Virtual Training Partner at The Springs…I will have my day.”


This story republished with the permission of The Mostly True Press Association.

Amid the flurries of the last few days in Michigan there seems to be a flurry of accusations levied against the Garmin Virtual Training Partner by Gene Butcher who has made public his claims that Garmin Virtual Training Partner is cheating. “There is some shady goings on happening out there these days” claims Butcher. “I would hate to make a false accusation here but I am pretty sure Garmin Virtual Partner is using some form of performance enhancing substances” Butcher adamantly states from behind a balaclava covered face. Butcher claims that on several occasions Garmin Virtual Training Partner has somehow altered the lap time to appear faster than he actually is, “Its either that or Garmin Virtual Training Partner is ingesting meth-amphetamines prior to race time, either way there is some poppy-cock and skull-duggery going on around here.” The final straw was a race that occurred yesterday in what some would consider a vicious blizzard. Garmin Virtual Training Partner attacked early in the race and left Butcher in a snow squall, Butcher tried in vain several times to close the gap but fell short finishing about a minute behind Garmin Virtual Training Partner. “My plan was to pull up wheel to wheel and deliver a crippling kidney punch, that’s the only way I can beat him….especially since he is gaining the upper hand in an underhanded kind of way” Butcher said.

The highly reclusive Garmin Virtual Training Partner could not be reached for comment.

2009= Failure

The above picture is the only picture I took at the Polar Rhino Ride, about 10 minutes before the event got underway.  Taken from the back of the riding field as people where still assembling.  The rest of the ride, to be honest, I was too petrified to take my hands off of the bars, except for a few sections of actual roadway the rest of the ride was on a snow covered ice rink kind of conditions.  If you want to see more pics of the event you can look at the Kinetic Systems Facebook page.  Now riding lik this most likely does not appeal to about 99% of people who ride a bike but I assure you if you get the chance take part in a ride like this, do it.  There is comfort and a little bit of fun in mass frostbitten misery. 

I couldn’t help but get lost in my own thoughts on this ride, the first ride of 2010…a new year.  I gladly put 2009 behind me there were events and ramifications of those events in 2009 that will follow me well into 2010 and for the rest of my life for that matter.  2009 will forever be the year that my dad died, the year that changed me in ways I still am trying to come to grips with.  2009 will always be the year I took to the trenches and tried to pull my own health back from the disaster it was….and I almost succeeded.  I say almost because in essence I failed…I let myself down…I failed to reach my goal.  If you look at the top menu tabs of this site you will see the heading “The Goal(s)” goal one was lose 100 pounds in 2009….failed.  I came close and you all know it and I am surprised no one called me out on it.  I have accomplished some things more or less by accident, sure if you lose enough weight your cholesterol usually will come down and sure if you ride enough your cardio will be better than it was when you where a young thin soccer playing high school student.  However, it does not change the fact that as far as goals go I am only batting 500.  I reached one of the goals and came within 10 pounds of the other.  I liken this to reaching the “Hillary Step” on Everest only to turn around and ascend back down to base camp…..its dietary blue balls and it sucks.

 So what now you ask?  I keep going; I keep grinding away through the snow for those last 10 pounds with the bitter taste of failure in my mouth.

Polar Rhino Ride

Just in case you didn’t know its New Years Eve, I say big flippin deal I’m stuck at work waiting for the all but guaranteed slew of 911 calls that will ultimately come tonight. Calls where stupid people attempt stupid human tricks and get themselves into all kinds of predicaments that will result in them being hastily taken to the hospital for stitches, casts, foreign body removal…the possibilities are endless. Speaking of stupid human tricks, we are also on the eve of the Polar Rhino Ride which I will be taking part in starting at the crack of noon tomorrow. This is where a few hundred people show up to ride the dirt back roads of our fair county. Now the other night I went out for a ride to insure that the Tri-Cross was in top working order, furthermore, I wanted to run a test on dirt roads now that we are inundated with snow and ice to see how it handles on such surfaces. After going “Tits Up” 6 times in less than a quarter mile I decided (albeit painfully) that perhaps some tires with a little more grip would be in order so I pick up some Michelin Mud 2’s. I take them home mount, inflate and go for a test ride….through my yard. In which case I liken them to this pictorial below:

My Bike before new tires:

My bike after new tires:

Happy New Year Everyone,


The Almost Impervious Laws Of Nature

Fist of all if you are visiting having found your way from Twisted Spoke…welcome pull up a chair and join me in a spot of green tea.

 There are laws of nature and recognized theories that make the world spin comfortably on its axis, for example “The shortest distance between two points is a straight line.”  We have all heard it we all recognize how in some cases this could even be true.  Here is another example “Tell Gene he can’t or shouldn’t do something and he will go out of his way TO do it.”  Its an un-arguable fact, it’s one of the laws of nature, right after the law stating there will be no toilet paper in a public restroom.  With my lifestyle change I get a lot of “cants, shouldn’ts, and wouldn’ts” mostly phrased like “Oh I forgot you can’t eat cheese.”  Only in these cases I am inclined not to break the clearly stated laws of the universe and not go out of my way obstinately to prove anyone wrong, instead I retort….”You misunderstood its not a matter of cant it’s a matter of don’t.”  Yet another near daily battle of wording is “You really shouldn’t go out and ride…it’s snowing.”  This statement is usually met with a blank stare and a curse “Pashaw!”  So I layer up my body in an entire laundry load of clothing and hit the road with thoughts of “I will show you shouldn’t, see you in a couple of hours!”  I am starting to suspect that people tell me I shouldn’t ride in a blustery snow storm just so they can watch me try.