2017.08.31 – 5 am conference calls suck.

That’s all – nothing to see here but selfies.

Actually – one of the habits I need to get back in to is my selfie habit. I have not been good about posting them up to my site here and I need to just do it again.

Part of the reason is I take the motorcycle in to the office now. When I was taking the train, it was easy for me to write down my thoughts and post up the selfies with them. But now, I just don’t feel like writing when I get home or before I leave. I really want to get back to doing it again – so let’s start.

2017.07.21 – The World Is Moving Fast

Contemplating coffee thoughts.

Last night I attended yet another meetup related to work. Throughout the evening all I could think about was how fast the world is moving. In the last five years, the industry I work in has taken a completely new direction, and I am not sure if the fast pace of change is really a good thing. The reality of the world is that you have to embrace change. Change never stops and sometimes you just need to embrace it and dive in head first. When others are dragging their feet, all you can do is drag them along or let them sink on their own.

Embracing change means you also embrace failure. When things don’t work right, get up, figure out what the hell went wrong, and make things better. And looking back for too long just keeps you stuck in the past. You can step back for a minute, but the longer you wait to tackle the failure, the more the world will have changed around you.

This chain of thought was kicked off by InspiroBot. Yes – the joke AI that makes random quote images. It generated the image above last night, and it really got me thinking.

Every time I ride the motorcycle I do put myself at a very high risk of something bad happening to me. I have been viewing learning and buying a motorcycle as a birth of a new life – the life that I wish I had a few years ago, but kept on putting aside. I put aside nearly everything when my I am riding and in a way it is like I am stepping away from my former self. I now feel like a different person – there is this sense of confidence that I never had before when facing unknown situations. I feel like I can step into the unknown, not look back to the past, and embrace what is about to come at me be it good or bad.

Did InspiroBot really give me a self-revelation about my life? Talk about the rapid pace of change in the world.

It’s that time of the year – Gear Season.

At the same time, certain things stay the same. It is that time of the year – Up Your Alley is next weekend – so time to start figuring out all of my outfits for the various events I will be attending.

I think I am starting to ramble – time to take a quick shower and get my ass to the office.

2017.07.20 – Morning Thoughts

Time to make the coffee

Being comfortable in your own skin can sometimes be fragile. I am always amazed at what little things will set me back.

One of the things I have noticed is that I stop taking selfies when I am no longer comfortable in my own skin. Lately, I have noticed there is a direct correlation to this when I stop working out as much. Last week, I had to take a break for a bit since my left knee was bugging me a bit so I took a five or so days off from running. And what I noticed is that I felt awful at the end. It took dragging my ass out of bed a few days ago and going back out for a run to feel normal again.

Other than that, I have been having a busy week – I had a work related meetup last night and I have another one tonight. When you factor in these meetups, they make for 12-14 hour days. I am slowly getting my road trip thoughts up and published. My goal is for that to be all be done Saturday morning. Unfortunately, I am going to have to put on my corporate drag soon and head into the office.

 

2017.07.19 – Documenting Changes

Workout done, time for coffee!

I know it takes a while for people to accept physical changes to their bodies. Somehow I still have not accepted it. I still feel like I am much larger than I am. While it doesn’t really seem like the changes over the last six months have been big to me, they really are when put in comparison with the past. Even when that past was still good for me. Most people would still not say anything negative about my body then!

Exactly 1 year ago I posted this on Instagram.

I am slowly starting to understand what changes caused these positive outcomes. And one of the things I am quickly learning is to not dwell on the past and look forward. Look at where you want to go, your body, mind, and spirit will follow. I really think this change in my personality came with the motorcycle.

When I look at myself from this angle, and compare to the past, it is clear that my body is following where I want to go. I told myself at the end of last year I need to make some physical changes and I have. It may be a little bit here and there, and I may get discouraged.

Enjoying two of my addictions

I think it has been a good thing that I have a narcissistic selfie addiction. It has been helping me document my life as I evolve. But now I need to get ready for work and deal with my long day today.

2017.06.10 – Feeling amused

Last night was amusing to me. I decided that before I spend 4-6 hours riding around coastal and mountain roads that I should make sure the suit fits right and get it broken in a bit. So I just rode around SF for a two hours. While it should come as no surprise to anyone, it really felt like I now was the rabbit that every street racer on two or four wheels wanted to chase. Instead of giving them what they wanted, I just didn’t give a fuck and cruised around at my own pace. I didn’t even care when a scooter rider tried to race me down Oak (and seriously, who does that – the lights are fucking timed for 30!). To me I was just amused.

I am sure I amused some people as well, the guy in race gear cruising around at the speed limit and just taking it chill. When I started riding, my sane friends told me to just not worry about anyone else on the road and do things at my own pace. This might be the best advice one can follow.

Now I can see why people with less self control can get themselves in trouble wearing race suits. I’ve read several articles about it, and now I understand why. My body just clicks into place on the motorcycle in a very controlling, aggressive, and confident position – that was just upright. Once I was able to get some clear roads, I found out how much it made a difference. Going around some of the twisty roads, I found myself going much faster through the corners than I have in the past. Some of this is the new tires on Matte, but the new gear also had an effect.

I also found it much easier to hang my body off to the sides in the suit. To me this is interesting, since the gear I normally wear is pretty much track level gear as well. Since they are zipped together it is not like there is a firm connection between the butt and back. In the suit, it that firm connection meant wiggling my butt forced my back over a bit. That feedback to me is rather paramount – and I think it is the reason why I took some of the turns on O’ Shaughnessy at the speeds I took. I am not going to say how fast I took this turn, but I still had nearly a foot before my knee would make contact with the road and I was already doing a good pace. Off the back of an envelope, I would have to be doing at least 100 mph to be leaned over far enough to where my knees where scraping.

I will continue to say this – if I am ever putting my knee down on purpose on the streets, someone take my motorcycle keys away from me. Conversely, I need to get myself some track lessons and do some track days over the summer. There is something rather additive about all of this as I get more comfortable – just need to do it in a safe and controlled environment.

For me, this suit is that it feels like there are clicks on the positions for me. There is the mostly upright position which for me and my bike is somewhere about a 20 degree forward lean. Then the halfway tuck where my helmet is just getting protection from the windscreen – this is typically where my body ends up on the freeway when there is no traffic. So far so good and going between them was easy. While I could stay between the two – it was clear to me that the suit was designed to be worn in certain body positions and my natural positions fit are there.

Once I found some clear roads, it was time to go down on Matte and I went into a full tuck. It was like I had someone force my back and body down. My belly slapped down fully on the tank, elbows resting on my legs, helmet bouncing on my cell phone mount. Do’h – the phone mount is right were my helmet wanted to go! But there was no middle ground, this suit was forcing me into the correct tuck position and keeping me there. Now keep in mind, my bike is not a race bred super sport and is a bit more upright and takes some effort to go down like this in my normal gear, but it was was effortless.

Being in that position, it felt like I was on the hunt. Now I see why people get in trouble. that was a very primal feeling.

2017.06.03 – Wondering why I stopped being me for a bit.

Getting back to just being me

There is a part of me wondering why I stopped being myself for a bit. After the fracture, I stopped being myself for a bit and didn’t wear leggings or my other gear out and about as I normally do. Even once I recovered, I noticed I tended to be wearing jeans instead of leggings. Subconsciously, I think this was leading me to a state of disassociation since I no longer felt like who I was.

Last night I said fuck it and let’s get back on track with life. Once I got home and changed out of my leathers I put on the Blackmilk coffee bean leggings and then headed out to Trader Joe’s to grab stuff for dinner. As I was walking up, I was thinking to myself, why was I hiding form the world?

It took me walking past a group of stereotypical hipsters looking all awkward tight skinny jeans, plaid, and the fur hats to realize a big thing. I feel like myself and I am confident dressed the way I am. I never want to be that person who is not comfortable in their own skin, even if it is just walking up the road to grab groceries.

However, Leggings and Motorcycles don’t mix. I’d like to keep my skin intact, thank you very much. It is going to be interesting to see how my wardrobe evolves from here. While I never have issue wearing leather out and about, I did break down and buy a pair of Bull-It SR6 Riding Jeans to avoid looking like a complete alien for short trips around town. On the other hand, I have found walking into a store in a two piece race suit does get you the quickest service.

I just feel like myself again.

2017.06.01 – Distracted

All protected to read my morning emails

Over the past three months I have made a lot of changes to my life. Between buying a motorcycle and fracturing my clavicle, my life has reshaped. And these new experiences are distracting me from other healthy habits that I was starting to form last year. One of the unfortunate things has been that I have not been writing as much, which is something I really didn’t want to drop off.

In the past three months, even with the fact that I not on Matte (the motorcycle) for over a month while the fracture recovered, I put on 4,000 miles on him. As I put on the miles on the bike, I continue to learn more about myself. But getting this on paper has been really hard for me, since I have not been able to come up with the right words to explain the changes and feelings I have. All I know is that I feel more or less myself when on Matte and I arrive at my destination refreshed.

I also stopped taking as many selfies despite my continued weight loss from my diet changes. Part of this has been a crunch for time in my day. But it really started to wane while I was recovering from the fracture. The strange thing is I kept my weight loss on track during that period, and I am down nearly 30 lbs since the beginning of the year.

This brings me to what my goals are for June. I want to get back in the habit of posting gear selfies and thoughts on a regular basis – and today seems like a good way to start it back up. I also want to write down all of the thoughts that I have been failing to get down on paper or online.

Let’s get back on track with the selfies.

 

Still confused on how I can truly enjoy coffee while in a helmet.

2017.03.14 – Recovering

Starting to feel more normal again

Last week, I had an accident. It is not what you think. It did not happen on the motorcycle, but rather right here in my own kitchen. I slipped and fell into the corner (where the camera is at) of the granite countertop and fractured my shoulder.

Yep – It’s fractured!

It looks like the recovery for me will be fairly quick. They want me out of the sling next week and want to start adding weight again in a few more weeks. I will be seeing a physical therapist soon and will go from there.

But the last week was hard for me – I was really starting to enjoy the motorcycle. Didn’t hurt that it made my commute much faster and cheaper. During the afternoon last Tuesday I was planning on making a trip down to Monterey for Sunday. On top of that, everyone around me noticed that my mood was just getting better. Since I had to focus on the road and bike – I would get to the office or home with a completely clear head. I honestly was feeling great.

So I went from that, plus getting around 8-12 hours of athletic activity in a week to basically having to sit back and do nearly nothing! I was fairly depressed over the last week. It is the reason why I haven’t posted up much. But that all changed this morning.

I attempted to go out for a run this morning. While within literally 10 steps I knew that my shoulder wasn’t ready for it, just the attempt changed my mood around. The reason why I attempted is because I woke up with no stiffness or soreness. I thought to myself, if I can do a 1 mile run, that would really help me. Sometimes just the failed attempt is enough to make you go, yes – things will be better.

Instead I’ll just make coffee and enjoy the morning

I need to start preparing for my trip to San Diego over the weekend. Can’t take my big lenses for the zoo, so I will have to make due with the RX100IV for the trip. But I am sure I will still enjoy it and meet plenty of interesting people at SD Leather Pride.

2017.02.05 – Am I Too Intense?

Current Mood: Coffee

Today is turning out to be a really mellow day. My week last week was a combination of coming down from DNA and then it ended in a serious of frustrations which I don’t want to go into on my public site. I was going to do a flat ride along the coast, but there is a marathon blocking the route I want to take. Maybe in the end, a good chill morning is exactly what I needed.

But over the week, I decided that I wanted to get more serious about dating. So I decided to poke my toe in the water with OK Cupid. One of the debates I had over the week was, should I go use the latex poolside selfie I took in Vegas as main image. I decided to say yes to it. The reality is, if anyone is going to date me, they are going to need to be comfortable with who I am and not some perception of what they think I am.

I updated my profile stating that, hey if you are going to even consider me you need to be good with this. Over the last few years, I have just learned to speak my mind and be up front. And I should be up front on a dating site – I really don’t have time to deal with illusions. What I noticed is the number of people liking went down. Someone I was chatting to even said that I was too intense for him.

I was chatting to one of my close long time friends and he agrees that I have gone from someone that faded in the background to being very intense. But I am not sure this is a bad thing.

The question in the back of my mind is, am I just too intense for most people?

2017.01.25 – Glad to be alive

TL;DR: Taking my morning selfies today was tough. I am still recovering from the adrenaline rush and drop from what happened last night on my commute home. If the events of last night were just a few seconds later, I would have been severely injured or possibly dead. I also think learning how to ride a motorcycle and doing a basic rider course over the weekend also possibly saved my life – it managed to break some bad cycling habits.

Adrenaline rush crashes suck! Having a hard time posing this morning.

To set up the play by play – I am on my road bike with my rear light on flash mode, my front be seen light on flash mode, and my main headlight at the 300 lumen (medium) setting. This is typically how I have my lights setup for night riding. Also, this is over the course of 7 seconds (if that).

  1. At the red light at Oak and Stanyan stopped waiting for it to change. I notice there is another cyclist approaching behind me and is probably going to shoal so I get ready to just take off.
  2. I take off and somehow this guy doesn’t shoal and start the ramp up on that little downhill leading into JFK drive.  At this point I continue my sprint downhill and I am in my typical position of being in the left part of the bike lane.
  3. Reach about 20mph and I notice a Prius starts to barely pass me, slows down, and then turns on it’s signal right hand turn signal.
  4. I see the right wheel turn, and I go OH FUCK they are going into the Park and Rec office parking lot. At this point, they are only a car length or two ahead of me.
  5. They keep going without yielding and I scrub off some speed and swerve around them. I managed to scrub off from 22mph -> 17mph in that one second according to the GPS data.
  6. Then I quickly look over and there is traffic trying to get back in the JFK Dr lane since they were passing the Prius and I go oh fuck time to get back in the bike lane.
  7. Here is where I curse the SF and the SFBC – the out I wanted to go is blocked by those flexible barriers in the stripped zone between the bike lane and car lane. If I hit one of those at the angle I was going to hit them at, I was likely to get one in to a spoke and do something bad.
  8. Swerve again and now I am on the path to hit the curb.
  9. Something just tells me look down the path I want to go, so I do and everything just follows and I get parallel to the curb with plenty of space to spare (in this case, I had about a foot in the end)
  10. Now I have the next obstacle, there is a fucking runner in the bike lane running right at me – at least at this point things are stabilized that things are back to normal and that was more of a gripe than an near death experience.

Every time I closed my eyes last night – the events replayed in my mind with different scenarios that would have ended in a bad crash. If that car was just a second or two later, I would have had no other choice but to emergency brake and end up in the door of a Prius.

Somehow throughout this, my upper body stayed loose and never tensed up. The other part was, before this weekend, I didn’t move my head as much on my bicycle. I used mostly my eyes to steer. Now, my head is pointing where I want to go and I am keeping it up more. In fact the only time during my commute the last two days where it stayed pointed down for any real length of time was is on the uphill of a KOM attempt on an overpass segment in Mountain View – and that was because I needed to watch my power output closely.

I really think spending 10 hours on those under powered motorcycles in a parking lot put some new muscle memory into me and may have just saved my ass.

I am really starting to believe from my biker friends that road cycling is way more dangerous than being on a motorcycle. At least if I had my motorcycle gear on, there would have been way more to protect me if I did have to hit the car. Still would fucking hurt.

Well I need to get stuff packed for DNA this weekend. If anyone I know will be in Vegas over the next few days, say woof.

Coffee Time