HTFU and get free stuff

Just Another Cyclist urges you to HTFU – and is willing to give away free stuff to those that do.

That’s right – we’re running a contest.  The challenge – find hidden instances of ‘HTFU’ around or the Just Another Cyclist Facebook page.  Anywhere you find those 4 letters strung together is a valid find.  It may be in the article itself.  It may be in a photo.  The only places that doesn’t count are user-submitted comments or third-party advertisements.

And what can you get?  The top three folks – based on the number of instances of HTFU found – will receive Action Wipesthe way to quickly clean up after a hard ride.  First place gets 7, second place 5 and third place gets 3 of the Just Another Cyclist special edition Action Wipes.  And there’s a special bonus prize available for you Sacramento residents.  There are three locations in Sacramento where you can find an item printed with both JustAnotherCyclist and HTFU.  Find any of the three and receive a bonus of 5 action wipes – regardless of any other prizes you may win.

How to enter

Search and the Just Another Cyclist Facebook page.  Note where you find them – include a URL or article title and description of where you found ‘HTFU’ written.  After you’ve found all that you can, send the details in an email to

The contest runs from now until 11:59:59pm PST on March 1, 2011.  Include ‘HTFU’ somewhere in the subject line of the email.  The winners will be determined and notified on March 3.  Sorry – prizes will no be delivered to addresses outside of the US.

So start searching and score yourself some free Just Another Cyclist Action Wipes!!  And to get you started – you’ve already found 6 right on this page!

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Back from sabbatical

Well folks, you may have noticed the posts have been a wee bit thin and far between as of late.  Truth is I’ve been on sabbatical – which in my case means I’ve been pouring hours into my day job.  It has admittedly been a busy week – with a lot of late night scheduled work.  But there is a little more to it than that.  I started to skip riding to work because I was tired.  Then I started to get really crabby – because I was tired.  I work in computer systems, so the couple of minutes I did have away from work issues I just couldn’t bring myself to sit down and put together a blog post.  I wanted to get as far away from my computer as possible.

Something funny started to happen though.  The more I put off riding my bike, the more grumpy I became, and the less I wanted to ride.  I even missed my group ride this morning.

It is a phenomenon that I know is not unique to me.  I’ve heard many others talk about it too.  Cycling is just downright addictive.  Many of us that do it a lot actually find our moods heading towards the darker side if we don’t get to ride consistently.  Sometimes you’ve just got to push through.  Just like that point in the climb on your bike where the quads are burning and you really don’t care if you get to the top or not.  You just push through.  Just keep spinning the pedals.

So I didn’t ride today – and haven’t ridden for 3 days or so.  Tomorrow I’m going to get up and ride – even if it is only 15 miles.  I’m going to do a couple of hours of work in the afternoon, and I’m going to record for a podcast in the evening.  Then Monday morning I’m going to ride my bike to work.  I’m going to stop whining, and catch up on all of the cycling news I’ve missed over the last week.  I’m going to start writing articles again.  I’m going to continue the efforts to get Sacramento’s first Virtual Alley cat race off the ground (stay tuned for more on that!)  I’m going to continue to go to work because I also love what I do – and it helps pay the bills to keep me in lycra.

And I’m going to keep writing.  Only next time won’t be about why I’m not writing…

Regular street closures in Sac on the horizion?

Two Sacramento City Council members – Steve Cohn and Jay Schenirer – are working with local SABA members to look into closing streets select streets to motor vehicle traffic in May, according to a Sacramento Bee report.  The idea is called a Ciclovia, and most definitely is not new.  The idea is to create a corridor in a city where cars are prohibited, opening up the space to cyclists, street vendors, pedestrians, etc. The target month of May also coincides with May is Bike Month.

Oakland has enjoyed some apparent success with their Oaklavia:

Email requests for comment to both Jay Schenirer and Steve Cohn have gone unanswered at the time of this writing.

More Bicycle Licensing Madness

It is human nature – when you are aware and think of a particular topic, you tend to find things related to that topic in the world around you.  Even so, my eyes kinda bugged out of my head when I ran across an article about a New Jersey lawmaker Cleopatra Tucker wanted mandatory license plates for bicycles.

Umm…  wasn’t I just talking about this just the other day?  The motivation for this bill was identical to what I speculated about in my previous post:
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Amira Fakira gets 4+ years for hitting cyclist

Amira Fakira was sentenced to 4 years, 4 months in prison for a Jan 31, 2010 hit-and-run.  On that night, Fakira stuck cyclist Sanjay Patel while he was riding his bike home from work.  Fakira did not stop, reportedly dragging Patel for over a quarter of a mile.  He was not dislodged from under Fakira’s vehicle until she executed a three point turn after striking another vehicle.  Fakira never stopped of her own accord, but rather had her keys forcibly removed from her vehicle ignition at a later stop light by a concerned witness.  Fakira was reportedly under the influence of both alcohol and prescription medication at the time of the incident.

Judge Ransom responded to Fakira and her attorney’s request for leniency by stating “The court feels that even though you’re eligible for probation, there is no way in good conscious I could in any way shape or form, offer you probation.”

Mandatory Use Law

Bicycle lanes are something of a double-edged sword in certain circumstances.  Study after study has shown that the presence of bicycle lanes has a positive effect on overall cycling.  However, some will argue that traditional bike lane placement – especially on city streets – comes with its own problems.  Usually, bike lanes are placed in the exact spot where drivers would get out of their cars when parallel parking next to the curb – the “door zone.”  Bike lanes can also put cyclists in conflict with motorists that are making right hand turns at stop lights.

One of the less obvious conflicts, however, are laws that are often referred to as “Mandatory Use Laws.”  California has just such a law on the books in the form of CVC 21208:
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80 miles on a damp Sat morning

Yet another great ride with the Cycle Folsom Peloton group today.  80 miles didn’t discourage me, but cleaning the bike from all the damned road grime and debris is discouraging.  Nothing like getting home, still cold and wet, only to look at your frame and know you need to turn on the hose.  By the end of the ride what I thought was a well-oiled chain sounded more like a cheese grater on a chalkboard.  Still, I never walk away from a Peloton ride with anything but positive thoughts.

You can read the full details of the ride at the Cycle Folsom Ride Leaders blog.

How to spoil your children

Getting young kids into road bike racing is a worthwhile endeavor, in my opinion.  In my recent interview with Dean Alleger, he talked about a lack of support in the United States for youth racing – “there’s no pipeline” as he put it.  Most of the time kids get BMX bikes for boys, and banana seats and streamers for girls.  Because of this lack of demand, it can be difficult to find actual road bike equipment for kids.

For my own children I went with the Fuji Ace bikes.  Available with 20 inch, 24 inch or 650c wheels, they offer a reasonably usable frame and road-bike position that is great for kids.  And at about $350 it is a reasonable investment for kids serious about road bike racing (or parents serious about their kids road bike racing) without sinking the bank on a bike they will outgrow within a season or two.

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Will track racing finally find a home in Sacramento?

The goal is a velodrome – a smooth surfaced track with banked corners used for bicycle racing.  Unlike outdoor road or stage bicycle races – more commonly known in mainstream America – track races are much friendlier to spectators.  In road or stage races, the setting is outdoors and you can’t see the riders until they pass by your vantage point.  In some race formats – like the Tour de France – that happens exactly once.

In contrast, track racing takes place in a stadium-like environment, where spectators can watch all of the action as it unfolds.

I stopped by Rex Cycles in Sacramento to speak with Steve Rex and Dean “Dino” Alleger, two guys who just happen to know a thing or two about getting a velodrome facility in the Sacramento area.

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Cyclist’s personal ads

What if the personal ads were filled with cyclists?

EMC (Elite Male Cyclist) seeks EFC.  Interested in races and rides – both group and individual training.  Love hills.  Ride a Trek and I prefer that my ladies do too.  Sorry – but ‘bent riders need not respond, no wheel sucks and definitely no dopers!  Pack filler is OK if they know how to carry the water bottles.  Max wattage of at least 300 over 5 minutes, please.

Beautiful Tweed Girl wants Male companion. I love slow rides through downtown, parks and trails.  You must know how to wax your handlebars – both on your bike and on your upper lip!  No hidden lycra in the closet.  Its all wool -all the time – for this girl.  Coffee or tea, not beer or liquor.  If you show up to our first date on a penny-farthing you’ve got a leg up on the rest of the boys.  And if you get that pun, you’re the guy for me!

Give me a Tri! FTW (Fit triathlete woman) seeks male marathoner, du- or tri- athlete to share training and nutrition trials and tribulations.  Training partnerships to start, and if things go well mutual post-event leg massages.  Ultra-marathoners and bare foot running fanatics scare me, sorry.

Male bike wrench seeks girl with bike. Is your chain skipping?  Wheel out of true?  Than this guy’s for you.  Looking for someone to share advice with.  This guy will keep your ride running in top shape.  If you spend a lot of time talking about the last shop you went to and what they did for you – I’m not interested.