Sunday, November 23, 2014

Ghetto Biker Update - Hard Nipples and Shriveled Dicks!

Well, I've been back from the road trip for a couple of weeks. People have been asking me if I had a lot of time to write on the road and the answer is, dude, if you spend all your time writing about what you're doing for one thing what you're doing is writing (ain't it?) plus you're always pulling your experiences out of the oven before they're fully baked. You gotta let 'em cook, man. So the experiences of my epic journey are still being processed and will surface in various surprising ways in days to come so stay tuned. In the meantime, I'm experiencing the joys of the beginning of winter here in my home deep behind enemy lines, and we've done some ghetto riding in temps ranging as low as the low teens. I am pleased to report that, through the judicious application of the proper ghetto-procured gear and a goodly dose of bad-assedness, the cold has not to a significant degree interfered with Your Ghetto Biker's mobility. Couple of things to note: 

  1. Thermal underwear still works. I hadn't worn it for thirty-odd years, but, yep, it keeps you way warmer. Plus it's not too uncomfortable working in the cube all day.
  2. When you're going down some hill at 30 mph, thermal underwear or no, at 12 degrees, you are in for a sphincter-puckering experience. But not for long.
  3. Huffing and puffing uphill, you're going to get sweat-arms. man. Maybe there's some high-dollar shit that the weekend warriors wear, but of course your G.B. eschews such nonsense. No big deal anyway, just turn the coat arms inside-out and let 'em dry.
We should reflect, also, that people do go out in this shit for fun. I'm talking about skiers & etc. Plus they pay a lot of money to do that shit. Your G. B.  accomplishes the same feeling of chilled thrill by getting out in traffic and going to work at 4:00 AM on the trusty Schwinn Frontier, which I did weekend before last. And I was just thinking as I schlepped up the steep hill there to the office, you could say, yeah, I had to get up at the crack of Tanya Tucker's sag-assed rendition of Delta Dawn O'clock and drag my ass up the hill to work (in which case you paint yourself loser), OR, you could say, yep, decided to rise early this wintry Saturday morn and get in an extra hour of cardio (which styles you vagina-wettening bad-ass). So it's all in how you choose to regard thyself, verily, is it not? The answer is, yes, it is.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Ghetto Biker Update: Deep in the heart of Tex Ass...

The first day started out promisingly. I wended my way out of Austin and got onto a paved trail beside highway 290 for several miles. It was humid and warm but not unpleasant. The paved trail went away after a while but the highway had a good shoulder, so I booked along okay and got out about 25 or 30 miles, but then for some reason the shoulder went away to about 8 inches, and that is a busy highway, heavily used by trucks. It got pretty scary and I was glad I had my rear view mirror and had practiced using it. I kept an eye on what was going on back then most people would start to move to give you room well in advance. There were two lanes going my direction and if the car in the right lane had someone to their left, they were very reluctant to slow down so they could move over, and you knew you weren't going to get much room. I had a couple within 18 inches of the handle bars, and a couple of times I just got a bad feeling and got off the road. I can't be sure if the mirror saved my ass but it might have, and I'm going to count it as essential piece of touring equipment henceforth. In addition to situations like that, it's just super handy for city riding so you can change lanes while keeping your eyes forward, which is so important especially in unfamiliar terrain. These considerations supersede the fact that it makes me look dorky as fuck sticking out like an antenna the way it does. But I digress...

About the time the shoulder went away, the sun burned its way through the clouds and started pounding down on me.  It was 93 degrees, which in that humidity felt like 103. I went 56 miles and the last 10 to 15 sucked absolute balls. There was even road construction the last few miles and then my back tire started hissing and went flat. And as I was walking my bike away from the road, guess what? Yes, the front tire went flat too. I'm pretty sure I had over inflated them in the hotel the night before and what with my heavy load and the super hot new tar they essentially popped. I've backed off ten pounds and haven't had the problem since, but imagine how much fun it was for me to change two flat tires right at that point in the day. I was not having fun, sports fans.

I was a little discouraged that night in my crappy hotel room but I checked out my route on Google maps and saw that the shoulder came back right after that town where I'd stopped, so that was a little encouraging. When I took a shower I saw in the mirror that my head was strangely discolored. These brown splotches. Am I allergic to Texas, I wondered? Do I have some kind of flesh-eating disease? Am I gonna die here at Knight's inn in Giddings? I finally figured out that the splotches coincided with the air holes in my helmet. Tan lines. There is a moral to that story, children. It's all about what's happening in your head. Freaking out rarely helps. I looked at the map and made some tweaks to my route to take it a little easier for a couple of days to give me time to adjust to the heat and humidity and went to bed and dreamed filthy, caligulan dreams which I unfortunately don't remember.

Day two. The gods of wayfaring bicyclists who cultivate humility and gratitude smiled upon your ghetto biker, leading him randomly to the town of Brenham, TX and moved him to stop at a certain little cafe which had this awesome Dr. Pepper cake, and further moved him to call and book a room in the Ant Street Inn, which the Google revealed to be just two streets away. It turned out to be this old hotel with hard wood floors and high ceilings and a big old brass bed right in the middle of town that this guy and his wife were running. Very swank and cute. As was the whole little town; little shops & shit everywhere. It was kind of a quieter, toned-down Park City sans skiing, out in the middle of nowhere, if you can picture that.

* * * *

Those asterisks mean time has passed. I got tired of writing and went to sleep. Now I don't feel like finishing the daily blow-by-blow. Suffice it to say that I've gotten through the first week none the worse, with legs, crotch and mind all toughening up nicely. As I sit here writing this now I'm in Port Arthur waiting for the rain to stop so I can go out and find some supper. Tomorrow afternoon I should be in Louisiana. Right now I'm feeling bummed out about what has happened to cities like Beaumont and Port Arthur. They've let the heart of them go to shit and established new, really tacky centers out by various freeway interchanges. Just chain restaurants and strip malls, etc. I knew this has been happening in many cities - such as Tulsa, where I lived for nine years - for many decades now. It's always bummed me out but seeing it now from the saddle of a bike drives it home even deeper. It's really nice and interesting to have a city with a real center to it. Austin had one. Salt lake and Ogden both have one. But not these last two I've visited. Well, I got myself a Janis T-shirt, anyway. The next big city will be New Orleans and that's gotta be cool, right? So later, Ghetto Biker fans, I think the rain has stopped...

Monday, October 6, 2014

Ghetto biker update: a doggone easy way...

Found a hip little coffee shop in downtown Austin. They're playing old time country music. This was the only thing on the radio when I was a kid in Moscow, Idaho when I wanted to hear Joplin and Hendrix, so it seems funny that it's cool now. But anyway, I've got to say a few words about the greyhound portion of my journey before it slips away. Ghetto biking includes any mode of transportation that will carry your bike, so it includes the greyhound, since zilla the bike was boxed beneath me during my 36 hour odyssey into ass-agony. Because, I ain't gonna lie, riding the hound from the point of view of the hedonic quest unequivocally sucks broken dog dick, baby. With the decreasing cost of airplane and train, the greybitch has been left with a thinner and thinner slice of the very lowest of the traveling public. These folks for whatever reason see no other fucking option for dragging their tattooed asses betwixt points A and B. It cost me $170 for Salt lake to Austin, with an extra $40 for the bike. And you get that price without troubling your zonked-out tweaker brain to plan ahead. Just show up at the station and throw your crotch-redolent bills on the counter, son. And then get in that line and schlepp your bags along the floor and get ready for a million years cramped into a seated position listening to some old guy three seats away explain his theory about every fucking thing in the universe to the fool next to him until some woman yells at him to shut up but then in the dark with your your tired ass you kinda miss the distraction. They stop every hour or two I think mainly to keep the smokers from murdering somebody. Greyhound is a corporation, of course, and so the logic of profit demands that their hurtling highway hounds of hysteria are kept as jammed full as possible at all times. Of my 36 hours I had someone next to me for all but two. And beware: this is another activity whose suckedness increases exponentially with every pound of extra weight on your body. I felt so sorry for this massively obese girl. And whoever had to squeeze in next to her. She held up like a trooper, though. I think she was with me till Dallas. The fucking jerk of the universe was there till Waco. He threatened me once for making him move his huge bag he should have had to check (I'm sure he didn't because he was up to his limit - remember, these are folks to whom every buck matters) and this other guy who had the temerity to not apologize for shoving said bag out of the way on his way to the toilet at the back of the bus. We both ignored him and that seemed to work. I can just see how it would turn out getting all cowboy with a scurvy fuck like that out on the road. I have a feeling the highway patrol wouldn't have much patience for either of us. Luckily he seemed to be all mouth, though.

The first night was the worst, just because of the pure shock of it. The next day we moved to a little newer bus. I reached down for my inner Buddha, read my book (the supposed WiFi they had never worked once), felt all right. That night I was next to a Mexican dude going home to Corpus Christi who was pretty cool. And the next day the sun came up and I switched buses in Dallas for my final stretch. The luggage guy there was cool - took the trouble to find me and tell me he'd transferred my bike. Another black kid was running around keeping people in the right place and keeping us laughing. It's always nice to see folks taking pride in their work, and they do work hard out there. For that last stretch there was a guy a few seats back who liked to talk, and talk he did. You'd think he was black to hear him but he was actually a big fat white kid with a full bloom of tatts. Finally this mean woman yelled at him that him that we didn't want to hear his life story, which wasn't unanimously true, because I kinda did, having nothing else to do. The guy apologized and shut up. You could tell in the silence his feelings were hurt. The girl in front of me looked back. I said, "Every greyhound is a powder keg." She smiled, because it's true.

Anyway, here I am drinking coffee and writing. I came downtown and went along the river here in Austin. The air is thick and easy to breathe, but the humidity keeps you wet all the time. Crotch rot will be an issue down here, I'll keep alert for that. The zilla is working well. Tomorrow, I ride.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Ghetto Biker Update: It’s All About Your Appendages

I've been caught in the summer rains a few times now and it’s been fun. I hear talk of “monsoonal patterns”. But the last time I got caught, my hands got friggin’ cold! And then this morning when I was fixin’ to jump on the trusty steed I realized it was cold and I went in and got a sweatshirt!

I’m going to have to face it: summer is drawing to a close and, all global warming aside, it’s gonna get cold and before it does it’s going to get cold and wet.

Now, it’s been a few years but this ain't my first rodeo riding the bike in the cold and/or the wet, and I recall a couple of things I have learned along the way:

  1. It ain't no thing to keep your torso warm. It’s all about the hands and the feet and the head.
  2. Dry and cold is pretty easy to deal with, but when you add wetness into the mix, things get more complicated. (Yuk, yuk)

So, not being one to get caught with my junk hanging out, I have looked ahead and I've ordered some waterproof socks, some waterproof “storm” pants, and some waterproof gloves. I’m just getting them off of the inter-web, after perusing the pictures and reading a couple of reviews. I've been doing that more and more. It’s so handy. Did a little thought of something you might need slither through your brain? If you can wait a few days, just sit down at the ‘pute and pull the trigger on some likely item. You’ll have a little surprise waiting for you soon on the front porch. It’s a wonderful thing.

And, btw, I can’t wait till they get those drones to start delivering. I’m going to call ‘em names & shit, because they’re just machines and maybe some human being is operating it and will hear my lusty verbiage and will thereby be somewhat gladdened.

“Hey, dumb-ass piece of mechanical dogshit! Don’t be fuckin’ looking at me with your goddamned LED’s or whatever. Just give me my motherfuckin’ package, drone!”

And all like that.

Anyway, we're ready for a cold, wet fall, so bring it on.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

A quiet moment with Kurt...

These people who ridicule our relationships with our animal friends are not thinking very deeply, I believe. I am a dog lover, myself, and I know that the feeling between myself and my dog, Pugsley, is one of deep love and common regard and understanding. You know, these creatures are sentient beings and, though they perhaps are not good at driving and stock trading, etc, they are very good at licking their own genitals and barking and other things. So your emotional relationship with your dog is just as intense and risky and wonderful as a relationship with a fellow human animal, and you should revel in it.

An additional benefit in a relationship with a dog is that you are kind of the god of it. You call all the shots. You begin by cutting its balls off so that it will be a better companion for you and will not have those troublesome sexual habits that get in the way. It’s okay, because he doesn't know what he’s missing, and you can tell by the fond way he gazes at you that he’s glad. And, like, you get to decide what he eats. If he does something bad you can say, “bad dog!” but he will never say, “bad human!”. And you don’t have to worry about him liking some other human better than you because he lives right there with you all the time. And if you decided that a dog is not a good fit for you, you can take it to the animal shelter and just leave it, and maybe some other human will come along and love it, but probably not, and it will be assisted in painlessly exiting this level of existence (killed).

So, I guess to sum up, your relationship with your dog would be almost exactly like your relationship to a human being if that human being were your complete slave in every way and you could kill him or her whenever you wanted and surgically remove their sex organs and never let them leave your apartment except to shit.

Now, if that’s not a win-win situation, please tell me what is!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

New Poem: why my dog must die

I reached for joy on the bus home from work.
I couldn't see any out of the jerking windows.

Sometimes my ego is a mucous-faced little brother
for whom I have promised to beat up the entire world.
Without that worry I would have turned into an owl,
listening on the night wind for my next meal of rodents.
My eyes would have been huge disks of placid gold.
Instead I sit here twisting my fingers into braids.

I don’t know where to send the checks to pay
for all the life moments I have wasted this way.
Surely I owe a fortune by now, and surely
a war has been declared upon my way of living.

I expect the SWAT team to bust in some night,
and I have enjoined my pug to avoid barking,
but he will do it anyway and they will murder him.

There will be a final yelp and a spattering of pug parts;
eye here, crooked leg there, a piece of wrinkled jowl.

No point whitewashing it, this is serious business;
far too serious to be entrusted to me, and all because
I refuse to live as the condemned man I am,
waiting for the arrival of my final meal,
sneering at my victims’ families through bulletproof glass,
a priest muttering god-spew into my trembling ear.

It’s my understanding of this which makes me a profligate.

Ignorance would absolve me, but it’s too late for that.

As I move about my house the pug watches me.
There is something held back in his dogly love.
Somehow he knows that I contain his undoing,
and as I pick up his shit in the yard before mowing,
I see a wizened buddha's face of judgement 
in the whorls and contours of every dark turd.

Ghetto Biker Update: Don't be THIS guy!

This is the bike rack at my work. My trusty commuter steed is parked correctly there on the right with its cute saddle bags & shit. That bike on the left, which is rudely taking up over half of the rack, such that if someone else needed to there'd be no place for them to lock up, was placed there by some unknown utter fucking scumbag piece of dick cheese.

I have made inquiries as to the identity of Mr. Cheese, so far to no avail. This lack of information has led me to speculate.

Now, that's a pretty nice road bike, but it shows no signs of wear and there is none of the gear associated with the vagaries of the long and winding road. I have a pretty nice road bike too, but I don't bring it to work. See, I threw my bike on the bus this morning because after work I'm going to zip down the the Ogden frontrunner station and take the train out to Salt Lake to do the Mestizo open mic. By the time I get done it will be dark for the four mile ride from the Clearfield station to my house. So, my bike has a headlight and a tail light. Also, in my bag at all times I have a spare tube and the tools I need to change a tire, plus a hand air pump. There is no 'Plan B' for the Ghetto Biker. I have my water bottle of course. During the hot part of the summer, you want that even on little rides.

But, what does Dick C. have? He ain't got shit, just bare bones. He may even do big rides on the weekends. Maybe he uses one of those camel backs for water. But he will drive his fucking SUV to the starting point, rest assured. And he figures, "Hey, I have sucked enough executive dick to get to where I've got a few mouths on mine now, so fuck it. I do not really recognize your needs and barely your existence if you are outside of my small circle of fellow cheeses with which I interact on a daily basis. So it's not like I was even being rude intentionally or anything. That was just the easiest and most stable way to clamp my bike on there, you know? The rest of the world can kind of fuck itself, as long as it does so quietly and does not disturb me in my fellating of ever larger penises in my endless quest for status."

Now, due to a bug in the firmware of the human female, guys like The Cheese here keep succeeding in reproducing, and this is unfortunate. But, I would beseech you to try not to use him as a role model. Do not be a dick cheese yourself. We got more than we can use already.