|Darin (L) and myself.|
There are a few things I am proud of in terms of my life's accomplishments, but maybe none more so than being involved in Darin, "Ears" Kueker's life. Well, it may not seem like much to you, but to me, it means a lot.
You see, when I met Ears, he was a teenager living in a trailer home mostly unattended. He has a mother, but she was mostly absent and Ears was pretty much on his own. That was where he was at when I met him in 1994 or so. I'll spare you the details, but between myself and a few other people, we invested into Darin's life and made sure he was okay. He actually lived with me for a spell back in the day. Anyway, I consider him a "son" of sorts, and when I get to see him, it is a big deal to me.
So, I was super stoked when I heard Darin call out my name while I was commuting home. He was back in the area on not so great terms- his mother has contracted cancer- and he was looking for me at the bike shop, but caught me on my commute home instead. We talked for about 45 minutes on the side of the road, and it was a good time. A great time, really.
Anyway, there is a lot more to this story, but suffice it to say, it is the people you touch, invest into, and have relationship with that are the most valuable things in this life. That's my opinion, anyway, and I think it is pretty spot on.
Good to see you again, Ears. Rock on!
I have been getting in some rides on the Twin Six Standard Rando lately. I had this bike in mothballs so long awaiting the wheels I needed to get the thing going that I forgot how it rode.
Well, besides a saddle that has given me fits off and on, I remembered why it was that I liked this bike so well. That is because it rides so smoothly. It points out a fatal flaw that a lot of the so-called "gravel/adventure" bikes have that are coming out of the woodwork these days. That being that, for some unknown reason, they ride horribly on..........wait for it- gravel! Yes, I know.....you'd think that would be accounted for, but apparently riding over crushed rock and the vibrations that can cause seem to have slipped the minds of these folks. The main culprit here are carbon fiber forks, none of which, (yes, I said none), are designed in such a way that they can even come close to absorbing the chatter of a gravel road like a good steel fork can. Some of these bikes don't even have a good back end to make up for it either. Think I'm the only one complaining? Read this review and see what I mean. I'm not the only person noticing this.
The trouble is that it seems as though bike designers are finding it hard to actually design specifically for off pavement riding because it is so misunderstood by the masses that they err to the road bike side. Either that or they are popping out "me too" designs to capitalize on a trend without investing much into R&D. Yeah....... You decide which.
Anyway, the saddle. Right. I decided upon a Brooks C-17. It should be on the bike over the weekend. Stay tuned for what I think about that coming up soon.
|Hoping to see more of this over the weekend.|
One of those will be a traditional 3GR ride from the usual place on Saturday morning at 8:30am, as long as it isn't raining or worse! We'll see about that.
So, you all have a great weekend. Stay safe, have fun, and say thanks to those who have served and are serving in the military. Remember your loved ones. Happy Memorial Day Weekend!