Notes From Yesterday’s Bike Ride

My touring bike and touring accoutrement showed up from FedEx the other day, and I finally had my old stuff (shoes, panniers, etc.) to go for a decent ride.  I also still have my touring bike in the 5,000 pieces it arrived in, and will spend a weekend day putting Part X with corresponding Part Y.

No, it's not a "foldie" bike
My weekend will be spent on this little project

But yesterday I rode instead, going South around Mesa del Sol, then into town to Nob Hill to watch a movie.  Yeah, this seasonal unemployment is pretty great.  Here’s what I discovered.

  • The taggers are currently losing the war with the City/County for control of the arroyo under the 2nd Street bridge at Mountain View.  Much more grey eraso-paint than tags.   It’s summer tagger guys!  You’ve done such a good job on the ditches around my SV home, you gotta put some effort in further South.  Shameful.
  • Mesa del Sol still pretty much looks like a closed-down movie set for a fairly low budget remake of “Office Space”.  Albuquerque Studios had a few cars driving up (with California plates) and some in the parking lot, but it looked pretty sleepy.  The fancy glass building still has only 1 or 2 tenants and eight cars in the parking lot.  The International Baccalaureate  charter school did open, but isn’t in the fancy glass building.  Just a few double portables out in the middle of nowhere, a few hundred yards from the fancy glass building.  I wonder what the story is there.  I also notice the IB school has special signed siparking spaces for “hybrid car” and “HOV car”, which I guess is good for a school that is at least a 25 mile commute from any possible student.
  • There’s a full-blown detour on University just south of Sunport now, and it takes us on a dead-business museum tour past the Eclipse Aviation plant.  I stopped by the place to get some shade for a minute, and peered inside the Eclipse offices.  Interestingly, magazines still sit atop a trendy end table in the waiting room, color faded and slightly peeling from months and months of ABQ sun.  A bunch of very nice-looking expensive conference chairs are piled along one wall.  My classroom sure could use those..maybe I could talk to the Russians or Poles or whoever technically owns them now about a donation.
  • Shoppers for bicycle stuff now have an interesting choice in Nob Hill.  “Do I support the new fixie shop or the established ‘Bike Coop'” across the street?  I spent my five bucks for a spare tire tube at the fixie shop.  I erroneously felt this was somehow an important economic gesture, comment.
  • Thanks to Keif and the Guild for holding over that film by/about “Banksy”.  I learned much about street art while being entertained by both the story and its ideas on art, fake art, the faking of fake art, culture, celebrity, obsession/imitation and on and on.  Almost deceptively thought-provoking, this was definitely a film I would show a middle school film class if I was still teaching a middle school film class.  Cuss words be damned.
  • Finally…98 degrees in Albuquerque equates to about 84 degrees in Jackson, MS.  Bike riding in ABQ equates to world’s greatest pleasure compared to bike riding in Jackson, MS.  No, it’s not perfect, but the bike lanes/”boulevards”/etc. and car interaction here is so much more enjoyable than in Mississippi.

4 thoughts on “Notes From Yesterday’s Bike Ride

  1. So, I have five bikes that need either new tubes, tires, or just some goo and air. Not sure. Where’s the most economical place for me to take them to be fixed? I totally need your advice. Damn goatheads killed them last summer and I’d like to get ’em fixed and make them impervious to the weedies.

    What say you?

  2. Natalie:

    I’m certainly no expert, but through experience and checking around, I’ve come to like two tires, and yes they are expensive. My willingness to pay is high, however, as I despise fixing flats (plus from a commuter angle I can’t really afford a flat on the way to work).

    Continental Ultra-Gator Skins:


    Schwalbe Marathon Plus

    My wife had the Schwalbes on her road/commuter and did 195 miles of Katy Trail with zero incidents. I’ve used the Continentals for a few thousand miles now, and have had one flat (knock on wood, nails, glass, etc.) in all that time.

    There are others, and there are cheaper others, but I like the Contis for almost 100% road riding when you want less rolling resistance, and would use the Schwalbes when you have more dirt/goatheads to go over (which sounds like your preference).

    I get my stuff at Two Wheel Drive, and they’ve always been nice, informative and timely when it comes to helping me. I don’t know if they handle the Conti tires anymore though, and got my last one at Performance Bike.

    Hope this helps….scot

  3. Thanks Scot! I will check them out. Took the bikes out of the shed today and am checking them out and hoping I don’t need to do tune-ups and can just get away with tires. We only ride recreationally but, given the mighty goathead, any trail we are on is hazardous.
    I appreciate your help and happy riding!

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