Who washes their car at 11:30 at night?So last night I was chillin' on the couch watchin' some TV getting ready for bed and the doorbell rings. WTF? So I get up and look out through the door and their is a guy standing on my porch. Looks like an OK guy, so I open the door. "Hi, I'm your neighbor from down the street. There have been some kids going through the neighborhood egging and I just wanted to let you know that your Toyota got hit pretty good. The cops have been called." . . . . "OK, thanks" I replied. I went back in and put on some shorts (I was just in my boxers) and went out with a towel, spray nozzle and some detergent to begin washing my car. Oddly enough there were 3 of us out there washing our cars at 11:30 at night. I'm thankful to my neighbor for letting me know about it. Egg does really nasty things to a car's paint. I'm gonna have to get him a card or gift certificate or something. So around 11:45 I come back in and hop on the PC. Outside I hear my neighbor Jen talking to the neighbor that was notifying everyone. I hear something about "trying to break in" so back downstairs and outside I go. Mike, Jen's husband, was home by then (he works swing) and there were about 5 of us out in the street. Apparently someone had tried to break into Mike & Jen's house while Randy (another neighbor) and I were washing our trucks. Jen was on the cell phone with the police and sure enough about 10 minutes later they arrived. Mike, Randy and I suspect that while Randy and I were washing our trucks, the eggers were hiding around Mike & Jen's house and wanted to avoid discovery, so tried to get into Mike & Jen's garage. At least that's what we're hoping. There was a description of a "red convertible" thrown around to the police. Of course Mike, Randy and I were pretty amped up by this time, so we took a stroll around the block to see what we could see. We found an egg carton that holds 30 eggs in the middle of the street and some expent paint balls. Definitely teen agers. But on a Sunday night. Weird. AND hitting random targets. Not that I ever egged anyone or TP'd their homes or anything, but the kids I KNEW that did that (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) always had a specific target in mind. None of us has teenage kids. Randy and Mike have 10-ish year olds, but that's awfully young to be targets of eggings. So, I got back in around 12:30 and of course didn't sleep much last night. I'm draggin' Hurlbut today.
Haven't been out on my bike for a few days. Hoping to remedy that situation tonight. I may take my clipless pedals for a spin and try them out. I mounted the cleats on my shoes Saturday evening and jsut sat on the bike practicing putting them into the pedals and getting out of them again. I think I need to up the tension on the pedals a bit, it's fairly easy at this point to "pop out". We'll see after a couple trips around the block tonight.
Teri is heading out of town for the first weekend in October. I'm trying to schedule a boyz day or night with my buds. Depending on who confirms, we'll either go hiking or maybe for a bit of a ride somewhere. Then come back to the house and play some cards or watch some football or both. Should be a blast. Looking forward to it!
Hawthorn Prairie was fairly successful for me this weekend. I think I picked up one new buyer and potentially got a sale and listing out of it too. I'm doing a listing appt. for one person Wednesday evening. Wish me luck!
Since this is my new hobby, I've been researching quite a bit of topics and have come across some sites that I thought worthy of making a list . . . I'll update this post as I come across more to add, but for now this is a good start:
Cascade Bicycle Club
Serving Puget Sound Cycling - Host of the Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic and other great rides around the sound.
National Bike Registry
Register your bike here, if it's stolen and recovered, they'll know who to return it to.
Not cycling specific, but a cool site that combines the use of Global Positioning Systems (GPS) with outdoor activities to help you train smarter.
Largest bicycle magazine, good tips and articles
Newsgroup dedicated to bicycling.
Find a new route or someone to ride with.
Picture of my bike . . .
OK, I couldn't resist going out and finding a picture of the 2007 Specialized Roubaix Elite Triple to post here, so here it is in all it's glory . . .
2007 Specialized Roubaix Elite Triple
Yep, I'm a geek . . . and damn proud of it.
Bikes and Assistants . . .So I had some free time today, so I took my new bike out for a spin. I ended up doing just under 6 miles (5.79). It felt pretty good. I'm still getting used to the shifters and it will take awhile for my legs to get into cycling shape again, but overall it feels good to be back on the bike. I did have one minor "mishap" though. I was coasting along a section an all of a sudden my butt started sinking. They failed to tighten the seatpost properly at the shop. Oops. And of course I didn't have my allen wrenches with me to bring it back up. I was about 1.5 miles from home at that point, so I rode back and adjusted the seat post and headed out again. I can't wait until I'm comfortable enough to add the cleats onto my shoes and start using my clipless pedals. It'll be nice to use the full leg on rotation. Wayyyyyy back when, when I added my toe clips onto my bike, it made a huge difference and I can only imagine this will be as good if not better. I do know this though . . . Portland seems like an awfully long ways away right now.
My assistant informed me she's moving back to Ohio today. I'm bummed. We were really just starting to get into the groove of things and I was really starting to trust that she could handle whatever I threw at her. But I understand she's gotta do what's best for her two kids. I will miss her though, we really got along well. She'll be leaving officially on the 22nd of September, but she's agreed to help me out from time to time as I need it until she moves. So now I'm in a quandry as to whether or not to hire another assistant. We're coming into the "slow" season so likely I won't make any rash decisions before the end of the year. It'll be a good opportunity for me to review my budget and reset my priorities. And now having HAD an assistant, I'll know more what to ask next time.
All for now . . .
I have a bike!I finally have a new road bike! I went to Bicycles West in Tukwila today and met a very nice technician/sales person, Carl. He really helped me cement my decision. AND I saved some $$ too. I ended up with a 2007 Specialized Roubiax. You may remember from my last post (earlier today) that I was looking at a 2006 Roubaix at Bonney Lake bicycles in Sumner. The price on that bike was $1,799 and they were completely unwilling to deal on the price. So I found Bicycles West through the Specialized website. Their price on-line for the same bike was $1,599. When I arrived, they didn't have an '06 on the showroom, but had an '07 at $1,699. Carl and I discussed the same things I mentioned in my earlier post, then we went through the fitting process. Carl really took the time to make sure I got the right fit. I ended up on a 56cm frame. I also added a cycle computer, clipless pedals and a better seat. While my bike was being built, I ended up at REI where I bought some riding shoes with SPD pads for my new clipless pedals and then over to Center Cycle for a helmet. I finally walked out of Bicycles West at around 4 with my new steed.
On the clipless pedals, the ones I bought (Shimano 324?) have a "normal" pedal side and a side with the clips for my new shoes. I want to get used to riding again before I take the next step and use the shoes. So probably next week or so I'll work on the shoes/pedals. I've just got to commit to knowing I'm probably going to crash once or twice on my new bike . . . .
I had to show a couple homes this evening, so I didn't get to even ride the bike until about 8PM. I took a quick 1/2 mile jaunt around the neighborhood just to see how it felt and to get used to these new fangled shifters. It was pretty cool. I cranked her up to about 18 MPH. Very smooth. But man, have I got a whole lotta work in front of me. I'm definitely NOT in cycling shape. But I'll get there. My coach Donna recommended a book, 100 days to 100 miles, which I'll likely pick up here in the next week or so. I don't have the desire (yet) to ride 100 miles in a day, but the STP (Seattle to Portland) IS one of my all time fitness goals, so I'm going to have to get close to that and be able to do it two days in a row if I plan to complete the STP.
Next up, I gotta hook up with my buddy Steve to do some riding. For a representation of my new bike, see my last post. It shows the 2006, but basically looks the same . . . wish me luck!
HOLY Cow Do I have a lot to say!
OK, so this will likely be a LONG post. I haven't blogged in quite awhile and quite a bit has happened since I did, so here goes:
My old home is sold, gone, done, the check is in the bank. As much as I was sad to see it go, I was REALLY happy to have the whole process done. Fortunately I had a GREAT Realtor to help me through the process! Now that $$ is burning a hole in my pocket. I am going to follow through with my commitment to buy myself a new road bike to reward myself. (see below) I also want to build a garden shed in the back yard at the new home AND we have some concrete work we want done. So that will all get done AND likely I'll pay off our new hot tub and bedroom set. BUT that money will go in my money market account and sit there and earn interest until next year when I have to pay off those accounts. Making other people's money work for you is a great option! :-) Our neighbors, Teri and I finally finished our fence project this last weekend. Mike and I built the two gates for Teri and I's home and Teri and Jen stained the fence. It turned out really good. Well, we did buy the wrong stain to start with, so one corner of the fence is bright orange. Fortunately it's the corner of the yard the shed will be going in and you'll never see it once that's built. Also, I got the components for my home network closet and whole house audio project. I got the wires from the amp to the closet connected and one set of speakers, my Bose 251's on the back porch, connected. The rest of the speakers will arrive this week and last week, I got the CAT5 cable ends connected and the volume controls installed. So I should have that project done by end of month. I'm hoping to have the concrete work and the shed done by end of month as well.
OK, so my quest for a bike continues. I ALMOST bought one this weekend. My problem now is that I'm getting conflicting reports and I think the problem is that both bike shops I've been talking to, just want to sell a bike. I've kind of moved beyond the clyclo-cross bikes and am now looking for more of a true road bike. The bike I looked at this weekend is pretty dang sweet, it's the Specialized Roubaix at Bonney Lake bicycles in Sumner. Talking to the tech/sales guy there, he said the all carbon frame and fork would be just fine for my weight. That there would be "no problems whatsoever" with the wheels going out of true often OR with the crank. So I was pretty jazzed about that. Then I went to Old Town bicycles in Tacoma again to compare prices. I talked to Torey there and he again stressed that I don't want carbon frame/fork due to weight issues. He also said a 56cm frame (the size at BLC) was too small for me and I'd need a 58cm. Then he showed me a Cannondale Synapse and said it would work well for me too, but that he'd still want to upgrade the wheels. Guess what? The Cannondale Synapse is an all carbon frame and fork. And it retails for $2,400.00 . . . but he's trying to get rid of the 06 models, so he'd do it for $2,050. so now I'm more confused than ever about which bike I should buy. I know I don't want to spend over 2 grand on a bike. The Synapse DID have slightly better components than the Roubaix, so I could probably justify the price hike there, but still . . . 2 grand . . . I've got some soul searching to do.
Teri and I headed down to San Diego to attend Brian Buffini's Master Mind retreat on the 19th of August. We had a GREAT time! MM is basically a personal growth/development seminar. Most of my friends think I'm a freak for attending the conference, reading self improvement books and listening to motivational CD's, but frankly I don't care. I do get a lot of ideas and inspiration from these things and hey, if it works for me, it works. So I'm not worried about it. During MM, we got to hear a couple of speakers that were just great. Jim Lovell, the commander of the Apollo 13 space flight who talked about overcoming adversity. And Jack Canfield, author of Chicken Soup for the Soul who talked about stretching to achieve things you never thought possible. Both were REALLY good. We all got copies of Jack's book, the Power of Focus. I've started it and it's great so far. Coming out of MM, I set a goal to inspire the guys I hang out with to read the book and follow it's action steps to see what kind of positive changes we can make in our and each other's lives. I've got two of them on board so far (thanks Steve and Erick!) so we'll see what happens. I ordered books for them both today. We've agreed to meet monthly and discuss 3 - 4 chapters of the book. So at the VERY least, we'll have some good company for some good food at least once a month for the next 3 months. :-)
After attending MM, Teri and I headed to my parents to spend the next 5 days in the desert relaxing and playing some golf. It was also my birthday during that time, so of course I had to buy myself a cool b-day present. I settled on a couple of Cleveland Halo hybrids for my golf bag. We ended up playing 9 holes on each Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I shot a 59, 60 and 59 respectively. I really need to get out more, or at the very least get to the driving range this winter to work on my swing. I drove the ball good, and hit some good second shots, but when I get within about 50 yards of the pin, or even on the green, my game goes to crap. I'm generally driving the ball 200 - 225 yards and can reach some par 5's in 2. But man, my short game needs some serious work. There was one hole, a par 3 144yd, where I teed up and hit my 7 iron. Plop, right on the green just past the pin! It rolled back and I had a 10 foot put for birdie. Of course my putt went wide and I had a tap in for par. Man, I wanted that birdie. I still haven't had one, so that's a goal. AND I want to shoot under 50 for 9 which will ultimately lead me to under 100 for 18.
Now it's back to work time! Coming back to work last week, I had 4 listing appointments! 2 of them are now on market, one was just a pre-listing appt. and won't be ready to list until October and the 4th cancelled on me last minute and listed with someone else. It was strange, but c'est la vie. Two listings coming on in two days is still cool! The market is cooling a bit, so patience is the mantra I'm telling my clients right now. We're outta the multiple offer sell in 2 days market. You just gotta be patient and wait for the right buyer to come along.
There you have it, all caught up!