Cadillac redux

Posted by bernicky - July 27th, 2005

OK. Here’s the skinny.

I thought since Javelin was willing to sponsor me in the clothing department maybe Cadillac would be willing to sponsor me in the bicycle department. What did I have to lose?

I contacted Cadillac and imagine my surprise when the contacted me back. They couldn’t go the bike but offered me an exceptional deal on the purchase of a new bike below the manufacturers suggested retail price. Now the trick is going to be to get my wife to see it that way 🙂

Maybe I should start a “Get Denis A New Cadillac” charity. Click the PayPal button to give me money – no strings attached HAHAHA





My training logs – woohoo

Posted by bernicky - July 26th, 2005

I just discovered today that anyone can see my training logs HERE this is new. Previously you had to join the site to see the training logs. Now I get to bore my three readers with regular postings of links to the logs 😉

I want….

Posted by bernicky - July 26th, 2005

Well the list of what I want could fill a page and a half easily. But one of my wants is curiously within grasp.

My kids – especially K – will tell you that I want a Cadillac. I love Caddys, always have. K takes great joy in pointing out the Cadillac’s on the road when we are driving though she has to hone her skills a little because she will identify any car with dual exhaust as a Cadillac.

So how is it possible that a car that cost more than my house might be within my reach – it’s not. But Cadillac now makes bicycles 🙂
Cadillac Bicycles an idea whose time has come. The best American car manufacturer now making bicycles. As a triathlete I have to love it. I know that the good people over at Japan Rider will check out the soft tails (two of them) and the hard tail Cadillac is making if only to see what the deal is.

Ok so these aren’t Guru or Cervelo or Kestral – but the cool factor is through the roof. Lemme see showing up on a Trek 1000 or a Cadillac! That isn’t even a question. The frame is aluminium, carbon forks and Shimano 105 gruppo may not be the best but it is a good mid range configuration. The saddle would probably have to be changed but there are always modifications to be made to a road bike. I just think this is the hottest idea in road bikes since Lance brought the sport to the front page 7 years ago.

Quitter Quebec?

Posted by bernicky - July 25th, 2005

There is a site out there for Francophones who want to leave or who are planning to leave Quebec. QuitterLeQuebec.com is a surprising idea and needless to say not exactly something which will be reported in the French media – but I would have thought that an Anglo would have come up with the idea. Maybe the best and brightest of our community did leave which explains me and the rest of us who stayed 🙂 .

Anyway it is good to page through if you have the time and can read French.

Cortazar

Posted by bernicky - July 25th, 2005

When I looked for this about a year ago it was no where to be found anywhere on the WWW. Now all of a sudden it is out there. Here it is – I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Preamble To The Instructions On How To Wind a Watch
by Julio Cortazar

Think of this: when they present you with a watch, they are gifting you with a tiny flowering hell, a wreath of roses, a dungeon of air. They aren’t simply wishing the watch on you, and many more, and we hope it will last you, it’s a good grand, Swiss, seventeen rubies; they aren’t just giving you this minute stonecutter which will bind you by the wrist and walk along with you. They are giving you – they don’t know it, it’s terrible that they don’t know it – they are gifting you with a new fragile and precarious piece of yourself, something that’s yours but not a part of your body, that you have to strap to your body like your belt, like a tiny, furious bit of something hanging onto your wrist. They gift you with the job of having to wind it every day, an obligation to wind it, so that it goes on being a watch, they gift you with the obsession of looking into jewelry-shop windows to check the exact time, check the radio announcer, check the telephone service. They give you the gift of fear, someone will steal it from you, it’ll fall on the street and get broken. They give you the gift of your trademark and the assurance that it’s a trademark better than others, they gift you with the impulse to compare your watch with other watches. They aren’t giving you a watch, you are the gift, they are giving you yourself for the watch’s birthday.

Instructions On How to Wind a Watch

Death stands there in the background, but don’t be afraid. Hold the watch down with one hand, take the stem in two fingers, and rotate it smoothly. Now, another installment of time opens, trees spread their leaves, boats run races, like a fan time continues filling with itself, and from that burgeon of air, the breezes of earth, the shadow of a woman, the sweet smell of bread.

What did you expect, what more did you want? Quickly, strap it to your wrist, let it tick away in freedom, imitate it greedily. Fear will rust all the rubies, everything that could happen to it and was forgotten is about to corrode the watch’s veins, cranking the cold blood with its tiny rubies. And death is there in the background, we must run to arrive beforehand and understand it’s already unimportant.

Takes regular use and craps out

Posted by bernicky - July 24th, 2005

Remember “Takes a licking and keeps on ticking” ?

Lynn bought me a Timex Triathlon for Christmas. It stopped working yesterday on my bike ride. Just stopped. It isn’t the battery – the battery is working fine. The indiglo light works, numbers are on the face, but they don’t mean anything, cannot be changed or reset. The watch has crapped out. It is too bad it was a great piece of equipment to have on runs, rides and swims. You try and find your receipt and warranty papers 7 months after getting a present. I wonder if Timex and other large companies count on the fact that people often receive their products as gifts and will never be able to make a claim on the generous warranty terms offered in the miniscule print that comes along with the multi-page instructions for using your watch. I love this line from the PDF available for download at Timex.ca: “The warranty does not cover defects or damages to your watch.” Someone working for Timex has a sense of humour.

The real question now is do I invest in another Timex or start looking at the new generation of stuff like Polar. I have been wearing Timex since I was a kid. My first watch was a Timex. President George Bush (senior) was head of the C.I.A. and wore a Timex throughout his tenure in government. He probably still wears one. I am going to check with my triathlon sponsor and see which watch (if any) is the official team watch for Javelin.

Julio Cortezar once wrote a brilliant prose poem called “Preamble to instructions for winding a watch” which I have not been able to find since reading it back in university but if you can find it, it is worth the read.

The comedy festival is now over. It was long and entertaining. We had a blast. The traffic to the Funny Site spiked up during the festival. With over 400 reviews on line and our readership doubling every month we pretty much have a hit on our hands.

The All Clear

Posted by bernicky - July 21st, 2005

Synchronicity is a strange thing. I just arrived home from my doctors appointment yesterday when the phone rang. It was The Running Room letting me know that the running shoes I had ordered had finally arrived. This jibed perfectly with the doctor saying I was clear to run again. Life is good. Though ironically I am not going to be able to fit in a run until tomorrow. The need to be sensible is weighing heavily on my mind. I will start back slow and build back up to my previous levels over.

I spent the evening at the Just For Laughs Festival. We went to the Tommy Tiernan show Loose which was hilarious. Then we went to the Delta hotel and schmoozed with the comics a bit and took a few pictures. It was fun. Richard is writing everything up at the Funny Site where we have a kind of mini-blog going about the festival.

Training changes

Posted by bernicky - July 17th, 2005

Well my new training without running has made for some different numbers in my life so far this month.

Bike: 26h 40m 39s – 802.26 KM
Swim: 7600 M

Swimming is really coming along nicely though it is still insanely exhausting. 1500 meters takes almost as much out of me as a 75 K ride. It is getting easier though. The first time I did 1500 meters I could barely get myself out of the water. Tonight there were times when the swim actually felt like it was going smooth like I was progressing.

Towards the end of my swim tonight the lane was being shared by 5 swimmers and they were all much faster and smoother than myself. While I was huffing and puffing to finish my 60 laps they were breezing along with their 130 lap workouts. I have to admit I am envious of how smooth they are in the pool. They invited me to come on Thursday night to their masters swim class and give it a try. It would be foolish to ignore an invitation like that. Anything that can be done to make the swimming smoother and easier is worth a try.

If my foot is ok and I can get back to running again I will enter the Esprit Triathlon in September. The only real decision will be to do a sprint or an Olympic. I feel more like doing an Olympic because the bike and run portions are easy distances for me while the swim distance is really intimidating. The sprint would be a good workout though and if I am delayed in getting back to running it might be the more logical choice.

Laugh fest underway

Posted by bernicky - July 12th, 2005

Well the Montreal Just For Laughs Comedy Festival is underway. Richard and I have press accrediation as a result of the Funny Site which is growing by leaps an bounds. Now every major studio except Paramount is sending us material to review, the publishing houses are starting to send us stuff as well. It has been a lot of work, but it has also been a lot of fun.

My schedule for the festival is roughly as follows.

July 12 Bigger Than Jesus, Centaur
July 18 or July 19 Laughrodisiacs, Midnight, Club Soda
July 20 Tommy Tiernan, Gesu 9:30
July 21 or 23 New Faces of Comedy 7 or 9:30 Club Soda
July 22 or 23 Talk of the fest 23:59 Club Soda

The two late shows at Club Soda are late enough that we will probably be adding in earlier shows at different venues to fill in the time. Richard is going to probably spend some time hanging out at the Delta Hotel interviewing comics. I will just be taking pictures and taking notes for my own reviews. Two weeks of laughing ahead!

Rejected

Posted by bernicky - July 12th, 2005

Well the Beaconsfield Cycling Club has politely informed me that it is a little late in the season to be joining them and that my lack of group riding experience would be problematic. They have on the other hand invited me to give it a try in April and May when they run clinics to help people understand the dynamics of group riding. So I wait. There isn’t another group to ride with on the West Island. I tried the Dorval Club sport group last year and they were SLOOWW.

One line in the response from the Beaconsfield Cycling Club stood out though it was this: “While your speed and distance seem consistant with some of our groups, your lack of group riding experience is what concerns me most, as does your old bike.” My speed and distance likely would improve quickly with riders infront of me but that isn’t the part that caught my attention – my old bike causes concern. I really wonder if it is a safety issue for my bike which is kept in great shape by the mechanics at Paul’s in Pointe Claire or if it is a fashion issue? Maybe it is just sour grapes but I do wonder if those who have shelled out X thousands of dollars for their 15 lb aluminium or carbon bikes really want to be seen with someone riding a 21 lb, 20 year old Japanese racing bike from a manufacturer that doesn’t even make racing bikes anymore. I am probably reading too much into it.

Oh well.

I had a great ride yesterday – 85.5 K in 2 hours 44 minutes. That brings my total for July to 632.49 K on my road bike – I don’t count the riding I do on my other bike with the kids or to do groceries. I had a good swim yesterday doing 750 meters. I have until early September to build it to a steady 1500 meters so time is a little short. Between the bike riding and the swimming though I am keeping in good shape so when I can finally run again I hope I will still be able to do a decent distance from the get go – at least 10 K, anything less would be a embarrassing broken foot or not.

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