Thursday, October 29, 2009

It's Confirmed...My Bike Hates Me

I love Blue.. I really do, but lately, she's just not happy with me.

I'm not sure what I did. Was it not riding her enough.. oh wait.. that can't be true, I've been really good at getting her outside seeing the sites! We've had dates every Wednesday and Saturday since I can remember!

Is it that I haven't gotten her serviced enough (as we all know that can make anyone a little cranky :) Nope, I just had her into the shop about three weeks ago. She had a new cassette put on, a back tire changed (my first flat of the season while out on a Wednesday night). She got lubed and ready to ride again?!
What the heck is the problem I ask?!
Maybe she needs some moral support, some encouragement perhaps (you look great blue, really shiny, very sleek - is that a new cassette your wearing?)
Whatever it is, I had better figure it out because our last three weeks have been really rough. Ever since her shop experience she has been having some issues. Let's just say I've replaced 3 tubes and one tire since then. Last Wednesday (after getting back from Denver and hitting my house at 4:15pm), just when I thought I had everything under control, I tried to pump my tire and I was on schedule to get my whole ride in by 6:30 (aka PITCH BLACKNESS). As soon as I removed the pump I could hear air leaking rapidly from the valve and I thought "you bugger" as I moved it around trying to figure out what the problem was. It seemed to be bent and after 10 minutes of messing with it, air just wouldn't stay in so I knew I would have to change the tube to get a new valve. I start changing it, and my neighbor decides it is the perfect time to carry on a full-on conversation with me. Considering I am not that savvy at changing a tire in the first place, this is not my ideal time to chat it up. Finally, I had to let him know that I'm just not that good at this and it would require every ounce of my concentration to get it changed. Wouldn't you know, I fight to get it on, check to see that it's seeded. It looks good.. and then BAM the thing blows with a loud noise as I pump it up.

I'm sure the neighbors loved that - crazy biker triathlete girls at it again!
I rip it off, now 25 minutes late, and take a few deep breaths. After some positive self talk, I go at it again. I really work to do everything correctly. While pumping it up I get really excited, it holds and I throw everything back in the car and head down the road. Till I hear something hitting every time it goes through my break - wham, wham, wham - it almost knocks me off my bike. After taking a closer examination I realize I did not get the tire completely in right at the valve and it has blow up like a growth unable to pass through the narrow space. Already covered completely in grease I whip off the wheel while saying a few choice words and let most of the air out. I grunt, scream a little and finally get the tire pulled on and then promptly bust out my CO2, say a prayer, and let er rip. The freezing cartridge fills my hand but I do hear air going in...
And it stays..
and I'm thankful.. very very thankful. Now 5pm, I wonder if my training partner is even still in the vicinity. I may not make it to meet him, but at least I will get to ride for a little. PLUS that was really really good practice and I'm actually feeling a little hard-core by the end of it! Like a real biker chick! Finally!!
Needless to say when I found a rip in my back tire before Saturday's ride I was not happy. Everything worked out (again), and I was back on the road and ready to ride in no time.

So, hopefully whatever is wrong with Blue lately will resolve itself. Or maybe she just wanted to get all of that out before Clearwater so we wouldn't have any mis-haps. That's just fine and dandy with me!
Ahh..we meet again...

Last night's trainer ride! Not to many more of those to go (this season anyway!)

Speaking of Halloween costumes, I'm ready! I'm not going to reveal what it is, but I'm pretty excited about it. I didn't make it (like I have in the past), but it's still a great fit for me and I can't wait to put it all together.

This picture is from two years ago. I like to do a little karaoke on Halloween if possible so hopefully this year will be no different. I had already changed out of the rest of the costume but the hat remained..not sure why.. but it did!

Happy Halloween everyone! Have fun and be safe out there!

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