Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Season

Well the season for the Cape has started. We've actually been super busy since the end of March, all of that snow is a distant memory. We're slowly getting the staff up to speed with our new point of sale system, it's great for me as I'm the IT guy at the shop so all day long I hear "George how do you?" We changed from our previous system Digital Retail Solutions RMS to Ascend, Trek's system, as with most things Trek the support is fantastic. I'm reasonably computer savy but when you've run your store with one system and change to another simple language differences can make all of the difference, Fortunately support never makes you feel like an idiot (although a number of times I have been) it's got to be that midwest nice people thing.
This year will be the first in over 5 years we won't have any of our girls coming back, I'll miss them, the rental shop won't be the same without them, Meg O is staying down in PA, Devan C is working for a camp riding horses I'm sure, and Meg D may or may not return to the Cape. I guess it will be a summer of fart jokes and sweaty boys.
If you don't already you can follow us on Facebook also, we actually do a better job of updating Facebook than I do with the blog.
That's all for now I'll post something after the first Corner Cycle cookout.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Snow and Health Insurance 2011

This has been a long time coming I thought starting a blog would allow me to update info for the store quicker than updating my website, yeah how's that working for me.
We've been busy with the store, Molly's swimming, and the implementation of a new point of sale system (oh boy isn't that fun!). Even with the awful weather we had this winter (can you say record snow) we've been able to ride most of the winter on the snow bikes, we got involved with the guys from Speedway Cycles in Anchorage, AK that make the Fatback snow/flotation bikes http://fatbackbikes.com/ If you haven't tried one come to the store and give them a go, they come with more smiles per mile than any other bike. With the snow gone we still plan on riding them on some of the sandy trails in Myles Standish State Forrest and on Plymouth's Long Beach they truly will go where a standard bike can't.
I finally got a few days of xc skiing in this winter, I've been teaching Molly to skate ski, she goes pretty good, the fitness and strength from swimming makes it easy for her on the hills. Her technique needs to improve to be really good at it so I think next year I'll get her a few private lessons to refine it. We skied at Trapp Family Lodge, Ole's Ski touring in Warren, VT and at Waterville with my sister and brother in law. I don't think it will be long before I'm following her.

So I've just received my renewal for my family plan with Harvard Pilgrim it came with a really nice 20% monthly increase for 2011. Sweet I'm now paying more for health insurance than my mortgage. If you think the Democrats trying to reform health care was a bad idea, I have two words for you and they aren't Merry Christmas. I will never vote for some overpaid suit to continue to screw me while he gets rich from PACs associated with insurance companies. My biggest gripe with insurance is there is no parity, I pay more for my policy as another guy does if he has the same policy but belongs to a larger buying group. Remember when the Congress was talking about a single payer system? Well it would have worked for me. I might have been able to give my employees coverage if instead of going up 20% the cost went down 20%. The question remains how long can I continue to buy health insurance at a 20% increase per year? If this level of increase continues, in 5 years I'll be paying something like $4K per month! Should I just say screw it and pay nothing then pay the fine from Massachusetts for Romney Care? (I love how Mitt the Shit is backing away from government mandated health care, Mitt you flip flopping turd) So the next time I hear someone complain that their contribution to their employer provided health plan went up to 50% they'd better pray I don't have something to hit them with. I'll take a 50% cut in my contribution in a minute.
Well that's enough ranting for now.

My buddies Gary and Mike in the snow and woods of Myles Standish.

Molly and my sister Ellen at Waterville Valley.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Americans at the Masters Worlds

This year a bunch of US riders went to Masters Worlds in Mol, Belgium. My team was well represented with Jonny Bold and Kevin Hines. We (the collective we) had pretty good success considering the "random call up/seeding" that seems to put all of the Belgiums on the front row. JB actually did start on the front row and had a good race, he finished 18 seconds out of the rainbow stripes, as is his nature JB was there to win so he wasn't super pleased with 3rd. Kevin got the Belgium shaft and started near the back (they're probably still pissed at him for winning the Belgium nats last year) as with US Nationals he passed nearly the whole group ending up 5th or 6th depending on which source you use. I'm sure Kevin wasn't pleased either, they both went to Belgium to win. There were a bunch of other Americans at Worlds I've only given you the couple of guys I know, follow this link to the results. http://www.belgiancyclingselection.be/wk%20mol%202008.html
So next year Masters Worlds are in the US we'll see if any of the Belgiums make the trip, maybe we can start all of the US riders on the front row....

Monday, January 3, 2011

The Holiday Season and Such

So my 50th came and went, we had a great ride of 50 miles which included Molly riding with me for the last 11, very cool. The party after was great, a bunch of the riders stayed for beer, pizza, and ribs, Freddy Abraham supplied the ribs which didn't last long with the crowd we had. If you missed it too bad all of the participants received a custom Corner Cycle pint glass. I'm working on a bunch more for all of my beer swilling friends and customers. All in all I had one of the best birthdays to date.

We were very busy at the shop for Christmas, we sold more bikes this year than any in the past, it should make the off season go that much easier. I'm looking forward to this season, there's so much new stuff again this year it boggles the mind. We plan to replace most of our rentals this year so we'll be busy with assembly of at least 60 new bikes, it looks like we'll be replacing the Bianchi Milanos with a new bike from Norco called the City Glide 8. We bought a pair to check them out and I think we've found a winner all of the boys at the store have ridden them and pronounced them fit to be a great rental.

One of the things that happens this time of year is the holiday greeting cards, I'm still at a loss as to why people feel it's necessary to send pictures of themselves and their kids. Hey I like my kid but I really don't want to send her picture to everyone I know. I always feel a little guilty throwing them away, should you keep them? or should you chuck it after the holidays? I guess I just don't get it. In no way is this meant to offend anyone, I know you love your kid(s) I just think it's a little weird displaying your family in my house.

cheers for now, here's hopping for a great '11

Monday, November 15, 2010

So we just finished up with 3 cross races in 4 days between the Coonamessett Farm Eco-cross and The Plymouth Festival of Cyclocross. Quite the show. I'm glad it's over. We had a great time at Coonamessett, Harpoon supplied beer to lubricate the racers and volunteers alike. Sunday's Plymouth race had a great little kids race, we had 16 kids race in 3 age groups and beyond a pile up in the "older" kids race everything went smooth. The bouncy house definitely gave the parents a break while watching the adults race. One of our masters racers Chad saw his son Carter show glimpses of future sucess nearly winning the 3 lap big kids race after coming back from a first corner crash and a back of the group start.
My brother Bill and his son Adam set up a real pro race with their company International Cycling. If you need crowd control fencing, finish line trusses, or anything related give Adam a call or visit them on the web www.intlcycling.com They'll make your event pro.
So as Toby would say "the hipster tractor pull" is over for this year. We hope to return Coonamessett to a weekend next year so we can draw a few more riders to our event.
All for now.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Loud pipes save lives.

So I'm sitting in the bike shop building a wheel, which if you've ever done it can be very therapeutic. While I was relaxing and working 8 or so really nice guys on most likely v-twin powered motorcycles came roaring by. So my question to you is what gives you the right to (1) violate federal law and remove the stock pipes and (2) disturb my peace with some juvenile show of macho ism? I'm not anti-motorcycle I've owned a bunch of motorbikes and I still have my leathers and helmet so I can ride when my friends bring their bikes by (hint hint) but I never laid into the throttle around town, short shift your hog dude, give my ears a break. So to any of you that like the straight pipe sound I'll offer you a freebie, next Monday morning around 3am I'll come by with my Honda lawn mower and mow your lawn for free! Mulched and bagged too,think about it you'll be the talk of the neighborhood, a free lawn mowing. Sound good, well think about how your motorbike sounds riding through my town, and think about what you're doing when you drop your Visa on the counter for the totally bitchin' Vance and Hines pipes about to be installed on you bike, you're violating federal law and pissing a bunch of people off, why do you think you get hassled and stopped? Oh and by the way loud pipes don't save lives, use your mouse and look up the Doppler Effect on Google, the sound is emitting from behind the vehicle, not the front like a horn or siren, you're past the person you're trying to make notice you before they hear your drag pipes.
Oh and grow up.

botd=BBC Steel Rail Extra Pale Ale

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Titanium bikes

So carbon rules right? Well we've just had 2 different Ti IFs come through the store with totally different set ups and uses. One is a replacement for a road bike I built for a customer around 5 years ago that came to an untimely end when it fell off a car rack on rte 128. The geometry and set up rules out a carbon bike so what to do, custom Ti is what, the bike looked as good the second time as it did 5 years ago and the fit is spot on. The second is my main man Sammy's Ti 29er. He's been jonesing for a Ti IF forever and finally pulled the trigger this fall, the boys and girls at IF hooked him up on the paint for a true one of a kind. I must say its a really nice bike that will be with him for a long time. So I guess the long and short of this post is Ti is still alive especially if you need custom fit that you can't get in a carbon bike or you want something that will last nearly forever. Consider it the next time you think about the "last bike I'll ever own".
Ok I don't own a Ti single bike anymore but I still have my Merlin Ti tandem, maybe the next bike I get will be a Ti Club Racer or Independence.

botd: Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (they finally got rid of the twist-off caps)