Tuesday, December 30, 2008


I'm making my own pair of studded tires for my commuter bike, which has 27" rims. I don't think there are any tire manufacturers that make 27" studded tires. So, this is where it all begins. It's a slow process and I don't even know how effective they will be. I'm screwing in the screw pointy side inside so I have more metal surface area in contact with the ice. Then I'm grinding the pointy side down to a flat edge. I'll use a tire liner, too. Wish me luck.

I got in some good xc skiing last weekend. This is from a 2hr classic ski excursion in Jay Cooke State Park. I didn't run into a single person.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Lycra Helmet Cover

Some of us from the lab got together last Thursday for Dan's xmas sweater part-tay. My gift for the party host, the Darth Vader stocking, not the beer. I almost kept it for myself. It had two sound effects, the dark heavy creepy breathing, and then a short burst of a couple of lightsabers thrashing at each other.

Dan modeling my sweater. Deer going over a hedge.

I got you covered if you're in need of a lycra helmet cover. Available from TPC in Duluth I give you four options:
-1980s flowing Mom blouse
-tiger stripes
-modern geometric
-classic checker board
I can't guarantee saftey, but I can guarantee style.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Hot Wax

Suicidal Tendencies came to Station 4 in St. Paul last Thursday. Katie and I were there for the mayhem. It was a good show, but we were both disappointed they didn't play "Institutionalized". At least I don't think they did. We ducked out at the last minute to beat the crowd.
There was this one guy who uncannily looked just like Big Blondie. He knew all the words to all the songs, and required a 3'x5' clear area so he could get all of his moves in.

Duluth got massive snow over the weekend. Over a foot of snow or something ridiculous like that fell on Sunday. Then it was too cold to go outside and enjoy it. I went to TPC on Saturday to wax my snowboard and my xc skis. Somehow I ended up working while I was there...never fails. Not that I'm complaining!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Cowboy Up

We had our holiday work party this week. I got 3 cowboy boot shaped glasses in the white elephant gift exchange. I am the envy of every Queen of Doublewide Trailers out there. Katie got a clock that I initially thought was a jock strap.

Ted guarding the parking lot at Kramarczuk's in his Girl's Gone Wild Hat:

Monday, December 08, 2008


When I saw this in my Inbox, "You'll say "Wow" everytime with ShamWow!", I was prepared for some sort of new chamois technology. I was horribly disappointed to find out it was just junk mail. Although, it could do wonders in a pair of bibs. I could ride 50 miles in the rain without a fender before the entire ShamWow gets soaked, plus there is no hope for an unsightly camel toe!

Got in some snowboarding with my sister Joyce on Saturday. It has been a very humbling learning process. My arse was sore the rest of the weekend. It's been fun though.
St. Louis River freezing up nicely:

Friday, December 05, 2008

tour de lab

This week my roommate is getting in more miles than I am. She's doing re-hab on her knee on her stationary bike. She could totally blow me out of the water, give me the look-back and drop me like I was standing still.

Yesterday my Mom and my sister Joyce were in town and stopped by the lab where I work. It's an impressive place if you like science-y stuff, or just like creepy old buildings. This is from the turbine level looking up 2 stories:

Mom giving the wind tunnel her tough approval:

Up on the roof:

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

night ride

Went on a night ride in jeans with Fred on Monday. We cruised around Calhoun and Harriet. We saw the crescent moon last night, it was in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter. But it was kind of hard to see Venus and Jupiter in the middle of the city. My bike headlight wasn't working either, but it was probably a good thing so I couldn't worry about the ice before riding over it. Luckily we both stayed upright the whole time. At one point I tried to drop him. I did the look-back and went for it, but shit, my 6mile roundtrip commuting training regimen just isn't enough, better up my game.



Monday, December 01, 2008


I went to the Snocross National at Spirit Mtn with my brother Ted. I'm not a sledneck like my brother by any means, but I was totally blown away at how fast these guys were. It was really fast, agressive, exciting racing. I'm definitely a fan, even though I have cursed the noise and smell of gas from snowmobiles when I'm out xc skiing.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Digital Bicycle Speedometer

This week's random find at Twin Ports Cyclery, Digital Bicycle Speedometer. I found it in the basement, hidden in the archives.

So Katie and I went snowboarding at Spirit Mtn on Saturday. It was crazy busy as expected. I still suck, I'm still learning and it's a good challenge. I woke up Sunday morning and I felt like someone kicked the shit out of me, it's a good soreness.

Post-coffee and dinner at Hacienda del Sol, the best mexican eating in Duluth.

It wouldn't be a good weekend without getting crazy with my brother Ted, either. I was following him through Jay Cooke State Park, and we hit 80mph on a straight section. Sometimes we can't resist driving fast through there since we grew up a block from the park and know the road.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Wind Tunnel

Everyone's in a wind tunnel these days perfecting their TT position...Contador, Armstrong. Fools, all! Can their wind tunnel simulate wind blowing through a city or forest or soil erosion? Mine can! How do you like them apples? Ok, I know, it's nerdy and I'm nerdy.

On Weds night Katie and I went to see a ski/snowbard film, Under the Influence at the UM Coffman Memorial Onion theater. We rode our bikes there and rode around the rest of the evening. We're getting all geared up for winter. We're snowboarding opening day on Saturday at Spirit Mtn. It's going to be crazy and crowded, but we're going to be part of the chaos!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

state cx

Saturday I picked up Mary, a case of Harp and we checked out the State CX race. I liked last year's course better for stumbling purposes. Last year you didn't have to stumble too far from place to place for a good viewing spot. The burrs in the wood section stuck to me like a magnet. I was picking them out of my coat and shoelaces for the next day and a half after the race. Duluth had a good showing!


Mike Hall

Ross Fraboni

Saturday night two of my nieces were in town, Emily the 10yr old gymnast, and Riley, the 7yr old who is too smart for her pants. I took them to the cheap theater in Hopkins. We saw Wall-E...the best animated film I've seen in awhile. It was really fun. I rarely get one on one time with those two. The next day Emily had a gymnastics comp in Maple Plain. My family took up an entire section of bleachers. Pretty typical for my family to be rolling 10 deep where ever we go.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Bring your A game

Bring your A game on Saturday. I'm going to state cx to spectate. Any other normal weekend I'd pack the car and head for my sanctuary of Duluth. However, my family will be visiting me in Mpls and we got some family stuff going on. Should be fun.

Last Thursday me, Katie, and Lucy went to a small punk show in St. Paul at Eclipse Records. I liked the first band, but the other group I saw was just loud and noisy. Whatever, I still enjoyed it.
Then last night, the three of us went to SR Harris fabric outlet. It's a dangerous place to go if you've got sewing projects on the mind. I looked around, but couldn't find the right material for an apron. I'll have to do some more looking...

At work we're preparing for winter and as the water was lowered of the intake pool, we discovered that a ton of minnows had came in from the river and got stuck in the pool, along with a bullhead that grew to 10 inches, and 3 crayfish, each about 6 inches long. We collected what we could and returned them back to the river.

Hundreds of catfish minnows.

Crayfish hanging on by a toe.

Thursday, November 06, 2008


Last week Linus Gerdemann looked like a not hot girl and winning the Deutschland Tour didn't make him manly enough for me, this week, Sabine Spitz has some serious man-pipes. Why would you want to publicize the fact that you were offered EPO and other doping shite, but never took it? She looks like she's sweating testosterone. I'm worried. Ach, die Deutschen!
At least they're not busted for cocaine like Boonen. I'm still going to have his baby. I can wait till he gets out of jail, you just watch!

I'm in love with vareniky from Kramarczuk's. I ate 3 of them yesterday along with a sausage for yesterday's lunch. I got a side ache from carrying water samples up 3 sets of stairs, but it was worth it. Yummy, vareniky is my new favorite food!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Benotto bar tape

Halloween 08 in the books. I dressed up as a non-slutty Tinkerbell. Although at the end of the night I reeked of cigarette smoke from the punkrock house party that I evolved into Stinkerbell. First, Katie and I rode our bikes to the Nomad and met up with her friend Ben. We had a couple beers and some girl bought us a couple of shots. Then me, Katie, and Ben went to this house party in St. Paul. I should never venture into St. Paul in the first place. I always get lost there and I brought that bad luck with us when we tried to find the house. We eventually found it and Katie sung a few songs with her band, then Johnny Hardcore took over along with this girl drummer decked out with only a few strips of strategically placed electrical tape on her upper body. She rocked. Best costumes of the night were a Beetlejuice and his Bride from the movie. Worst assumption received was being mistaken for Victoria's secret model as I was riding through Dinkytown, I had wings, but I wasn't going for that effect. Seriously. It was a good Halloween though.
I went home to Duluth first thing in the morning after Halloween. I had to make it to Twin Ports Cyclery to catch up on gossip and get a few essentials. Then my nephew Noah was celebrating his 10th birthday. I got him a Peet shoedryer for his goalie skates.
On Sunday I spent the whole day with my brother Ted. We went up the shore, stopping at the Split Rock Lighthouse, and checked out some of his past hunting grounds around Finland. Out in the middle of nowhere we saw this dude riding his bike with a bundle of 8ft long swamp grass loaded on his bikerack. He was about 30yrs old, wore an army coat and had really terrible white person dreadlocks. Further up the road there was a few abandoned cars off the side of the road and maybe a shack?? We figured that was his destination. I swear people who ride bikes are so weird...=) On our way back to Duluth we stopped at Betty's Pies for a chicken pastie and raspberry rhubarb crunch pie. Yummy.

I voted Tuesday. I was there 10min before 7am and there was already a line outside the door. Later that eve, Katie, Ben, Matt, and I went to the Nomad for a free Schells for voting yesterday.

I started a new project at work. Basically I'm pouring water through filters all afternoon, baking filters, weighing filters, and some water collecting during tests. I will be nailing down the SSC (Suspended Sediment Collection) process down like a pro. I'm still loving my at the lab even though we done with all the outside science sample collecting.

We got some random things at Twin Ports Cyclery:
Old school Benotto bar tape

Really small pink toeclips

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Linus Gerdemann

I read today's Cyclingnews and the picture of Linus Gerdemann is not so attractive. He looks like a girl! I've seen better pics of him. This one is a much better angle. I know I'm such an a-hole, maybe it's because I'm jealous he has nicer eyebrows than I do. I guess I like a more manly German man.

Last weekend wrap-up, Friday night never ended. Katie and I left work and went straight to the Bulldog in NE and met up with her friend Matt. I had a St. Feuillien Triple which kicked my ass. I could still feel it after 15min ride home. It has to be the best thing I've tasted all week.
Later Katie and I went to theWarren Miller movie, Children of Winter. We ran into more people from the lab at the show. Small world. Afterward we all ended up at The Shout House. I finally pedaled home at 2:30am. The movie was awesome. There was even a shot of Schweitzer Mtn in northern Idaho with Lake Pend Oreille in the background. It's a mountain I'm more familiar with during the summer time as I've done some mtb races there and telemark skiing during the winter. I'm getting ready for winter, too. I bought a season pass for Spirit Mtn, both downhill and xc. Bring on the snow, baby.
I spent the rest of the weekend in Duluth. It's so nice to be at home. Cheggy one of the family dogs, but mostly my dog, is the best thing to come home to. He always gets crazy and sometimes runs figure 8s around me or races really fast back and forth in the yard. His full name is Ne Chej-howay which in my Mom's language means 'walks by the water'.
On Sunday I went with my Mom and one of my sisters to the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra classical concert. They played pieces from Ives, Gershwin, and 'Pictures at an Exhibition' from Mussorgsky and Ravel.

Happy Halloween a-holes, make sure to skank up for the holiday.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


I know what you're thinking you freak, when you drive by and see that logo in the back of someone's truck--you lovingly think of Mavic and badass wheels.

If you're going to re-tile your bathroom and you have to choose a thin-set mortar, and you see Mapei--you have to go for it! How can you go wrong?

Sven from Kare11 graced his presence upon our OSL to interview my boss for his Simply Science show. Me and Katie were in the background taking groundwater samples the whole time. We were on our absolute best behavior and we might even be in some of the footage. It should air in a week or so.
Last weekend I was pretty busy. Friday night I met up with the UM chapter of a student group, AISES, American Indians in Science and Engineering Society. We went bowling and got to know each other better. It's a real good group of students.
Saturday night I met up with April--laugh it up a-holes...April and June...haha. =) Everyone makes that joke when we hang out, where's May? We went to the Nomad to watch one of my co-worker's band at their cd release. Katie's the lead singer of The No No's. It was part of the zombie pub crawl. It fun dressing up like a zombie and seeing the other obnoxious and disgusting zombies.
Sunday I took Daniele with me to work on some trails with the St. Cloud crew at Camp Manitou in Monticello. He commented that it should be pronounced 'MontiCHello', since it is Italian. Yeah, what's up with the people in MontiSello? =)
There are some really nice trails up in that betch. It makes me wish I owned a mtb again.
Daniele approves of my seat, to have an Italian approve of my Selle Italia Flite--Brava! The rest of my bike is less than spectacular, but at least I have a nice saddle.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

hot pants

Monday's commute was a real wet one. The tops of my pants were completely soaked by the time I got to work. Like an idiot I left most my raingear at work. My commute is a nice 15min ride, I live a block off the bus/bike path that connects UM campus to the St. Paul campus. So when I did get to work I changed into my rainpants and threw my wet pants into the sediment baking oven. They baked for one hour at 221F, turning every 15min. They came out all crisp and warm, just lovely.

This week's bike project is to help get Daniele a commuter bike. Daniele is from Italy and is a new researcher at the lab. From what I can understand he will be doing research on ice on lakes and the amount of oxygen they contain. Good stuff.

Hey, when did taking water samples become so fun?!

I'm already thinking about winter. Last weekend in Duluth I was nosing around at used sporting goods stores, doing some recon on used touring skis. If I'm lucky I can just get a pair from some neighbors I grew up with then I can just change out the bindings to something new. All I want to do is to be able to ski on the St. Louis River behind my Mom's house, and not to wreck my nice skis in Jay Cooke State Park. There are sections of this one beautiful valley floor that can be pretty bare and worth skiing to, but I hate to ruin my nice skis.
I'm hoping for tons of snow!! There's already snow in parts of Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

tokyo police club

I'm back at SAFL. They love me here and I love being there. Unfortunately there's only so much data to process post-summertime. I'll be there until that's done. The good news is I get to come back full time again next summer. Here's a view from the upper deck at work--gorgeous.
We had our Outdoor StreamLab grand opening a few weeks ago. Here's Mary and I, partners in OSL crime. It was a real party...well, at least Mary and I did afterward. We went to a liquor store in Champlin and I found Bitch Creek Ale from Grand Teton Brewing Co. I can't believe I can get it here after I made BIG MIKE go through the hassle of smuggling a 6-pack out of Idaho over state lines, risking life, limb, and reputation. At least now I know where I can find it! I also picked up a 6-pack of Grand Teton's Sweetgrass IPA. Most delicious beers.
Here's people at the grand opening checking out our lab. It doesn't look like much, but there's a lot of science going on.

For much of September I was in Duluth at my Mom's house. I've been up to my usual and unusual Duluth happenings. Anytime I'm home I'm pretty busy with my family. With 7 nieces and nephews in town there is always stuff going on, soccer games, gymnastics, football, cross country meets, hockey, fundraisers, etc. It's great.
Then I volunteered at the Duluth double cx races. Jake does a really good job at putting stuff together, not to mention getting his hands on copious amounts of beer!
I've been working weekends at Twin Ports Cyclery, my other favorite job. The best customers are the kids, the tough West End kids. They always come rolling in needing air in their tires. I just put together some trainers, too, we got in the Rock-n-Roll by Kinetic. If I ever get a trainer again that might be the one since it looks like it wouldn't bore me out of my mind.

Found these guys on Pandora.com, Tokyo Police Club.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I Love My Job(s)

Worked at Twin Ports Cyclery in Duluth last Saturday. Another great summer day at the bike shop. It has its certain charms. At the end of the day I didn't work for the last hour because I had to replace my bottom bracket. It never fails though, even when you're at the shop and not working you still end up working. I couldn't get the BB out, but luckily we had this neat BB tool. The tool was nice and snug next to the bb cups.

What's up with the Mariners losing every game to the Twins last weekend? The Mariners used to be my team when I lived in Idaho, now it's the Twins--unless the Ms are in town. Favorite Mariner: Ichiro.

Today's in-bank flood was pretty good. It was the last time using agricultural soil for turbidity. Eric and I switched off driving the Bobcat to pick up a load from the parking lot, it was dumped up on this grate placed above our 800 Liter bucket, washed into the bucket with a high-powered hose. What a mess. And then it has to have the right level of turbidity output into the stream. I like driving the Bobcat but I still felt like I was driving it when I rode my bike home. Weird, I know. Other work duties this week: bake some more sediment cores for bulk density tests, do some post-flood surveying, and probably an e-line survey (measuring water levels of all 177 piezometers). I love my job it's always something new each day.

On Monday, Fred, Fred's co-worker, Craig and I met up at Lake Calhoun for a fun ride. I got a side-ache from laughing, not from riding. Never a dull moment!

Craig aboard the Pink Taco--it takes a real man to ride one.