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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

jack of all....

Michelle and I just moved to Columbus, so I am in the position of finding a new life. Luckily I found work that I am excited about, now to redefine myself. Thinking of the things I defined myself by in Dayton may no longer be needed in my new life. I have been in one form or another a blue collar job, the last ending in trail technician for the Five Rivers Metroparks. I have many years in equipment operation from chainsaws to 20K Forklifts. What I have found is that at my new job those experiences are not of any interest to the people around. Frankly, I am finding maybe they are not for me either, they were pragmatic choices I made in order to pay the bills. They were jobs in the idea of doing the "right" thing. Which my family is a strong supporter of, happiness is a secondary concern. Whereas the bike shop is definitely a choice done for happiness above pragmatism. I find that there are things I could bring up to another level, however, I am not sure I care enough to become the guy that is really good at cleaning bathrooms again.  I am that guy, I was trained very well at it, it was my primary responsibility at Englewood Metropark. That's not what I want to lead at, I would like to figure out how we can better recycle our trash, I would like to find a way to better dispose of tires and inner tubes. Scrubbing a toilet to high polish can become another worry for another day. I intend to become a first class mechanic, I am lucky I have excellent people to learn from.

Another thing I find is that there is this constant need to connect with people. But my approach I believe is wrong, often people compare histories and experiences problem being that I have had so many jobs that I feel like I  often sound like a know it all. I need to learn how to hold back, and perhaps only discuss what I am truly passionate about i.e. FOSS, bikes, and art. Sure I was an EMT-B(license lapsed), I am currently certified Wilderness First Aid and CPR/AED. those are things that are important to me. When someone talks about their experience as a medic of in a hospital setting I should just listen and not contribute my experience? I have other similar examples but no need to continue at the end of the day I have to work through these ideas. I consider myself someone who has nothing that I am a master of but half-ass at a lot of things. I believe it comes off as if I believe I am a master of all things. I have to figure out how to change my delivery or just shut up.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Job Choice

We recently moved to Columbus, Ohio the state capital. Michelle is working on her MFA of photography and I am doing...... Well, that has been the question, what the fuck am I doing. I immediately started putting out resumes to see what was available in the park system. My mindset was to find a job that will contribute to OPERS. I did find quite a few, on a whim I applied to a bike shop and very unexpectedly received an email to set up an interview. The interview went great I was excited about the job. I was going to be doing something I really enjoy, working on bikes. Then I received a call back from a park for a full-time job that paid more and offered benefits. That sent the pragmatic part of my brain into a frenzy. This is the right thing to do, this is the decision an adult makes. I scheduled the interview it went really well except one hiccup, plant I.D. I actually should have known this, that was an eye opener.  I have been working within the horticultural world for fifteen years now. That was an alarm bell, I knew most of the updated information on bicycles and I was only a hobbyist at this point. As a professional in landscaping and the park system, I could not I.D. basic landscaping plants was bad. With that, I withdrew my name from the list of candidates and am happily employed as a part time bicycle mechanic. This was a hard decision to make the happy one over the pragmatic one, I am glad I did.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Festive 500

I completed the minimum miles for the Rapha Festive 500 earlier than expected, the weather in Ohio has been odd to say the least.

Since 2010, the Festive 500 has challenged cyclists to ride a total of 500km on the eight days between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. Once again we invite you to join tens of thousands of riders in testing yourself on the bike over the holidays as part of this growing festive tradition."


The 24th I rode 180 km, the day started at 40 F @ 5 am I rode most of the ride on the bike-ways. I had a flat at 40 km, not sure what I ran over it was a good cut in the tire. I repaired it with a piece of old tire to get me home to swap out tires. The patch made the ride home really rough I was surprised at how much it wore me down.  I made it home at 80 km had lunch and swapped out tires. Back on the bike to finish the days ride, the rest of the ride was fairly smooth. It was overcast but still a wonderful day to ride.


Christmas day out the door 43 F @ 5:30 am to ride 80 km, well 80 turned into 160 km. This ride was a mix of roads and bike-ways, I started the ride on the road figuring they would be empty because of  Christmas. Once I got to 80 km I felt pretty good the skies were still overcast but the rain had not come yet. I decided to pedal on towards Waynesville, Ohio.  I reached Waynesville had a snack and headed back. 

About 15 km outside of Waynesville it started to rain I had 60 km to go. It rained for about 20 km luckily it only sprinkled and stopped when I got near Xenia, Ohio. I had 35 km to go and will have completed more than half the Festive 500. Being able to ride two centuries in a row was a big deal for me. I had a back injury  in April 2015, I was afraid that I would not be able to ride longer rides again. These two rides back to back showed me different. I was also surprised and delighted to see others out enjoying the day. 

On the 26th I rode 96 km over two rides. Up at 5am temp 45 F for the first ride to beat the rain, I rode mostly on road, riding streets that are normally to busy to ride. It was a fun ride always enjoy the city in the early morning.  The second ride I left at 1pm 50 F and pouring rain, I stayed on the bike-ways and did a lot of loops to get 48 km. It was actually fun I have not rode that much without ever being more than 8 km from home. I saw one other cyclist and two runners, I was soaked through an through but it was worth it. 


The 27th up at 5am 66 F and raining to ride 65 km. When I left the house it was incredibly warm for December in Ohio. 29 mph wind  gust wind speed from 10-18 mph plus rain. It was an odd ride the rain at first would come and go. Soak me for a bit than the wind would almost dry me off completely. It was really warm for the first 45 km than the temp dropped from 66 F to 55 F in less than 5 km and the rain just started pouring. I could hear a heavier patches of rain coming in while I was already being rained on. My bike and myself were completely saturated by the time I got home and I completed the 500 km. I will continue to ride as there are still 4 more days left in the Festive 500. I learned last year, ride when you can to complete the Festive 500. I made the mistake of not doing that last year and missed some pretty nice days to ride.

Saturday, October 10, 2015