Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

Take that, Graham Watson

July 21, 2014
Sorry, but I couldn't find a peloton to drop behind this lot.

Sorry, but I couldn’t find a peloton to drop behind this lot.

Missing the Tour de France on this second rest day? Me neither. But here are some sunflowers just in case.

Oh, yeah, I'm gonna get her for this.

Oh, yeah, I’m gonna get her for this.

Herself is road-tripping again, leaving me in charge of quarters, a change of management that Mister Boo finds repellent. The bug-eyed little weirdo is accustomed to constant attention from Herself, a.k.a. That Lady Who Gives Me Things, and when I’m down in the weeds doing a job of work he occasionally feels deprived.

I feel his pain, particularly when someone sends me photos of a delicious Aspen breakfast after I’ve just inhaled a dollop of yogurt, an English muffin and a cup of Joe.

We’re not in Albuquerque yet, but we’re inching ever closer. We’ve opened negotiations to turn The House Back East™ into a full-time rental, which would solve some logistical issues with running an Airbnb op’ from six and a half hours south. And in about 10 days Herself will relocate to temporary quarters in Duke City and take up her new gig with a bit of house-hunting on the side.

So Mister Boo has some more tough rows to hoe. And I anticipate further dispatches from The Breakfast Club.

Stoking the furnace

March 22, 2014
Eat 'em up!

Eat ‘em up!

Temperature? 23, feels like 13. Chance of rain and/or snow? 80 percent.

Springtime in the Rockies? Check.

When whisky is unavailable, what a auld fella wants on a brisk morning such as this is Bob’s Red Mill organic seven-grain pancakes with butter and maple syrup, two eggs over easy, black coffee and tea, mandarin segments and some warm socks (don’t eat that last item unless you’re really, really hungry or in dire need of fiber).

Like a dumb dog, I’m always surprised when spring looks suspiciously like winter, the way eastern Colorado looks like Kansas and Paul Ryan looks like a baboon’s ass. But last year, samey same. And the year before that. Annnnd the year before that.

You get the idea.

One of these days I’ll wise up and move to the desert. Where, naturally, I’ll bitch about the heat.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch

February 18, 2014
Pikes Peak has a dusting of snow, though the 'hood seems clear ... for now.

Pikes Peak has a dusting of snow, though the ‘hood seems clear … for now.

After five hours of drifting along with the tumbling tumbleweeds, I’m back in Bibleburg, where the winds have been knocking down trees, launching trash cans into low-earth orbit and generally annoying the mortal shit out of people. With more of the same on tap today it looks like fine weather for a hike, wearing ski goggles and a respirator.

I felt guilty about giving our old hometown of Santa Fe a miss on the way to Albuquerque, so on the return trip I stopped by Ten Thousand Waves for a much-needed soak and grabbed lunch at La Choza, primo to The Shed. Both places were nuts, it being a federal holiday, and I didn’t get home until 7 p.m. or thereabouts.

Training camp was a qualified success — I added miles, but didn’t subtract any weight, thanks to meals at Scalo Northern Italian Grill, Mary & Tito’s Cafe, Satellite Coffee and Zacatecas Tacos & Tequila.

Speaking of vittles, I don’t expect to be shopping at Reid’s Fine Food in Charlotte when I visit the 2014 North American Handmade Bicycle Show in North Carolina next month. It probably wasn’t smart of cook Drew Swope to lip off to a customer, even a punk-ass bitch like Gov. Pat McCrory — hey, Pat, I’ve got a gourmet snack option for you right here — but it wasn’t exactly brilliant of owner Tom Coker to sack Swope for speaking his mind, either.

Sunrise, sunset

January 15, 2014
We had quite the sunset the other night. And tonight brings a micro-moon, in which Luna is at apogee and will appear to be the smallest full moon of 2014, according to National Geographic.

We had quite the sunset the other night. And tonight brings a micro-moon, in which Luna is at apogee and will appear to be the smallest full moon of 2014, according to National Geographic.

With cyclo-cross nats over and a couple of deadlines beaten into submission, I finally have a bit of downtime, and as nature abhors a vacuum, the to-do list is filling up like an open bar at a press conference.

First and foremost, of course, is cycling. The weatherperson says we have an extended stretch of fitty-sumpin’ ahead of us, so, yeah, time to sweat a little gravy. I have a review of the Cinelli Bootleg Hobo due in a couple weeks, and just got hold of a Kona Sutra, which is next up in the Adventure Cyclist pipeline.

Then there’s grocery shopping — seems some fat bastard has eaten everything in the house — and last but not least, I should perform a spot of computer maintenance.

Anyone out there upgraded their Macs to Mavericks yet? I’m thinking of making The Great Leap Forward with the two Macs that can handle it, the iMac and MacBook Air, but the tales of technological horror I read online give me pause.

Herself has successfully updated her MacBook Pro, but she is beloved of the gods. Me, not so much.

Wild at Ivywild

January 1, 2014

I had not yet been set loose upon the world on Jan. 1, 1954. That blessed event occurred nearly three months later, on March 27, in the hospital at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.

As family legend has it, Mom’s obstetrician, upon learning I was to be named Patrick Declan O’Grady, proposed inducing labor to get me born on St. Patrick’s Day. Mom declined, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Out west in Colorado Springs, the Ivywild School was already open for business, and had been for years. In fact, it was one year older than my old man, who was born in 1917 in Bogalusa, La.

I didn’t attend Ivywild — by the time we got here in 1967, I was a ninth grader, and anyway, after a brief flirtation with a bomb-shelter-equipped home in the Skyway area we settled well outside downtown proper in what a newspaper colleague would later confirm was most emphatically not part of Colorado Springs, our suburban trilevel being well east of Hancock Avenue.

Ivywild gave up the ghost as a school in 2009, but was reborn recently thanks to local entrepreneurs Joe Coleman and Mike Bristol, who turned the picturesque old pile into the new home of Bristol Brewing, plus a number of other ventures: The Principal’s Office (booze and java); The Meat Locker (deli and charcuterie); Old School Bakery (breads and pastries); Hunt or Gather (seasonal foods from area farmers); Bicycle Experience (the second location of a neighborhood shop); and office space.

I hadn’t conducted an inspection tour since Ivywild’s resurrection, but last night Herself and I, along with a neighbor and the latest tenants of The House Back East®, dropped in to scope out a New Year’s Eve bash in the gym (think back-in-the-day sock hop, but with the booze actually sold on site, plus more and older wastrels).

It was pretty damned impressive, as you can see from the pix if you clicked the link above. The music was less so — the gym was a mighty small space, with either an indifferent sound system, poor mixing or a combination of the two, plus lots of chatter in the audience — but still, chapeau to all involved in making the Ivywild revival happen.

Ivywild is a welcome reminder that it’s not all Industrial Christianity and LiberTea here in Bibleburg. I plan on sentencing myself to a few rounds of detention there in 2014.

A chile reception

December 16, 2013
Chicken enchiladas in red sauce, potatoes roasted in red chile, and Anasazi beans in chipotle. The blank space on the plate is for the side salad that I did not make.

Chicken enchiladas in red sauce, potatoes roasted in red chile, and Anasazi beans in chipotle. The blank space on the plate is for the side salad that I did not make.

Weird dreams this morning. I was working for a newspaper (!) again, so I guess it qualifies as a nightmare.

So I walk into the newsroom, late as usual, and a receptionist type hands me a note with a short clip attached, whispering in dire tones about some class of tragic typo.

I reply, “D’you have any idea how many people we have reading copy these days? I tried to get the city desk to read one fucking thing yesterday, but nooooooo. …”

Then, since John McCain is sitting in front of this person’s desk for some reason, perhaps awaiting an audience with the publisher, I whip a Three Stooges routine on him, poking him in the chest with one finger and then, when he glances down, flicking his nose.

Moving on, I notice that nobody is at their desks. They’re all in the big conference room, and the mood is not evocative of a holiday party.

“Uh oh,” I think to myself. And then I wake up.

I think maybe I overdid the red chile last night.

Interbike 2013: The lap of Luxory

September 18, 2013
The road to Mandalay (Bay) continues this morning from the Luxor, which is named after a famous Egyptian laxative.

The road to Mandalay (Bay) continues this morning from the Luxor, which is named after a famous Egyptian laxative.

LAS VEGAS, Nev. (MDM) — It figures that the first familiar face I would see this morning was draped over the skull of Bruce Gordon, who like me is a perennial contender for the title of Grumpiest Old Guy At the Show. I’ve spared you the mugshots. You’re welcome.

We were standing in line at dark-thirty for a cup of Starbutt’s finest and got straight to the kvetching, as a guy will before java is made available in a 20-year-old shopping mall masquerading as a casino-hotel. And afterward, too, come to think of it.

Well, some of us, anyway. One of these years Bruce and I should bring a small square of Astroturf and a couple of patio chairs to the show and while away the hours hollering at people to get the hell off our lawn.

I don’t feel like standing in another Vegas queue this morning — one thing America’s paean to the Triumph of Capitalism shares with the defunct Soviet Union is the requirement that one queue for everything, no matter how worthless and unsatisfying — so breakfast today consists of a grande Americano and a Larabar.

And now I got to shake a leg. Mandalay Bay awaits. It’s showtime.

High on the hog

July 27, 2013
Soma Double Cross

The Soma Double Cross in semi-touring configuration at Blodgett Peak Open Space.

Yesterday was a rare day indeed, one largely free of responsibility for Your Humble Narrator (save for meal preparation), so I pissed off for a couple leisurely hours of cycling.

I chose the Soma Double Cross, which had been undergoing refitting for touring before the plumber took his monkey wrench to my plans for a little post-Tour getaway; I had reattached the rear rack, but hadn’t gotten around to the low-rider or fenders.

The Double Cross is not particularly light, but neither am I, so who cares? I felt like riding it, I felt like climbing some middling hills, and the ride proved as delightful as free beer on a hot day.

You may be disappointed to hear that there was some performance enhancement involved. Before heading out, I ate a sandwich of Niman Ranch applewood-smoked ham and Alp and Dell Muenster on rustic Italian bread. That little piggy (and not all that little, either) sure flattened out those inclines. A sign of the Aporkalypse? Perhaps.

Thank Buddha that nobody from USADA was around to catch my Zoom-Zoom impersonation. My sweat smelled like bacon, which is a dead giveaway that I’m on The Program again. They don’t even bother to draw blood once they get a whiff.

Industrial tourism

June 21, 2013
Eat me

I dined at the exclusive Vitamin Cottage in Dillon, selecting a delicious potato salad and San Pellegrino from the extensive menu of shit one can eat in one’s car.

Yesterday I visited, briefly, what the late, lamented Ed Quillen once called the Interstate 70 Industrial Tourism Sacrifice Zone. Nothing wrong with the place that Peak Oil can’t cure.

It had been several years since my last visit to the Zone, and peer as I might between the rare gaps in  traffic I could detect no signs of intelligent life.

There was existence, of a sort — the Breckenridge-Frisco-Silverthorne-Dillon clusterplex remained as relentlessly active as an anthill, busily raising a bumper crop of orange road-construction cones with one pincer and separating rubes from their rubles with the other.

I was in the Zone to meet a shooter from Steamboat Springs, whose current project required the Co-Motion Divide Rohloff I’ve been evaluating for Adventure Cyclist. Time was of the essence, and shop mechanics are crushed this time of year, so we didn’t care to wait for the lengthy disassembly-shipping-reassembly process, which can involve brown-suited gorillas using the box as a trampoline in between ZIP codes.

So I drove north from Bibleburg, and Doug drove south from Steamboat, and we met in the parking lot of a Silverthorne Wendy’s, as seemed appropriate, given the locale.

We were clearly members of the same tribe — Doug was driving a black Subaru with a bike on the roof, and I was driving a silver Subaru with a bike in the back — and neither of us was overjoyed to be in the Zone, though in its defense I will note that it was not on fire at the moment.

We discussed the Divide Rohloff, cycling and our own communities’ respective revenue-enhancement models — his, a vastly enhanced network of cycling trails (Welcome to Steamboat 2013!); mine, a downtown stadium for the Colorado Rockies’ farm club and a U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame (Welcome to Bibleburg 1913!).

Then we shook hands, jumped into our respective Subarus, and off we went.

Having taken the scenic route north, through Woodland Park, Hartsel, Fairplay and Breck’, I decided I owed it to science to take the interstates home. It being seven-ish I enjoyed mostly smooth sailing despite the $160 million Twin Tunnels expansion project until I approached the Air Force Academy, where I began a 40-minute crawl through three more road “improvement” projects to Chez Dog.

Those should do wonders for tourism. It certainly made me want to go somewhere. Take me out to the ball game. …

Burning daylight

March 21, 2013

Today started and ended well, lightly toasted slices of metaphorical bread comprising an actual shit sandwich.

On arising I recalled that we had a huge slab of meaty Ranch Foods Direct bacon in the fridge, so breakfast included coffee, eggs over easy, American fried potatoes, buttery English muffins and great thick rashers of pigmeat. Your basic heart-attack special, but I like it.

My plans for the workday hinged on breaking a piece of new technology to harness, but despite a hearty breakfast I couldn’t even get my rope on it, much less my brand.

Being something of a persistent cuss — you may call it “obsessive-compulsive,” I call it “persistent” — I kept working at it, trying first this and then that and finally the other, all the while taking copious notes on each fresh dysfunction with an eye toward eventually tattooing same on someone using an icepick and ball-peen hammer, with a sack of wormy dogshit for ink.

Thus the hours passed and the daylight faded, and the technology breezily countered my every move. By late afternoon, which saw the mailperson deliver an overdue check for services rendered that was redeemable for slightly less than half the expected quantity of Dead President Trading Cards, I was at a rolling boil, hissing like a teakettle full of vipers, blistering steam boiling out of both ears.

Herself and I had earlier scheduled a joint birthday dinner with friends, so I stuck my head in the freezer, counted to a thousand in Irish, and off we went to The Blue Star, where the four of us ate all manner of good things while discussing music, metaphysics and literature. Also, we solved every last one of the world’s problems save mine (you’re welcome).

Now I’m hardly pissed off at all. But tomorrow is another day.


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