Tuesday, July 31, 2007


M13 found a new bike jump in the open space near our house so we went out last night to check it out. He cruised over the jump right away since he'd been working it all afternoon. I didn't check out the backside landing beforehand so on my first approach, i did it "motorcycle stunt man style" - i roared up to the jump and hit the brakes just in time to stop before i actually took the jump. i was a bit scared and needed to work up the nerve. second approach....same thing...scared. at that point i got worried that i wasn't going to get over it and take the dang thing. that would've been painful for me even thought M13 wouldn't have thought less.

i watched M13 take the jump one or two more times and then gave it a go. i must say that i didn't really jump on that first time over; it was kind of a whoop-dee-doo. i'm not sure i was aggressive enough to actually catch some air but i did go over. okay, i know i didn't get air 'cause the big chain ring hit the top of the jump as i went over....

At this point, assured that i could make it work, and, after seeing M13 do it 8 times in the mean time, i went for it. i pushed it hard enough to get some air and to make the two boys watching say, "ooo" and "sweet" or "awesome." i forget which; probably all three.

i ripped it a few more times and felt like that was enough. I came, I saw, I jumped. I showed M13 my fear, conquered the fear and rode off into the sunset.

Rider's Log 7.31.07 - Big Dry Creek Trail

Up at 5:39. Dozen blueberries. Rolling at 5:58. Out open space trail to 128th Ave. Back to city park. 4 loops/intervals up lower hill then west 15 minutes to Wadsworth; 15 back to house at 7:30. Mileage: didn't check. probably 20. Felt good. good energy. no trolls
this morning i saw Scraggly Bellyman. Old Friendly Guy with foofie dog. Cougar with retriever.

if you are interested, on the aerial photo view of the map, look for the green squiggly line (creek) that runs immediately north of the city park. zoom in and you can see the path that runs along this creek. follow that north east to 128th ave and west to Wadsworth. my house is nearby but i won't be pointing that out....

Friday, July 27, 2007

Breaking News!

John rides 37 (updated) today. 2 hours up the mountain - 1 hour back. More details to follow.
Depart: 6:30 a.m. Westminster, CO. Turn around point: Coal Creek Fire Station @ 8:30 a.m. Finish @ home: 9:40 a.m.
I thought that i rode to Wondervu. I didn't. Wondervu is actually 5 more miles UP the road but i didn't know this until i took a drive with my family up this same canyon on Saturday. I'll make that my goal next week.
Some highlights of the ride: the majorly long train that was coming up the mountain out of Denver on it's way west. it came around the southern hill at Plainview Road (in the aerial, you can see the train tracks winding from bottom to top.) and was so long that, at one point, the front end was out of sight to the north and the back end was out of sight to the south but the whole thing was stretched out in front of me across the opening to the canyon. it seemed like it was a mile long and the whole scene was like a small scale train set in someone's basement that had come to life. i'll have to take a picture of that point because it is very mountain scenic.
Also, the weather was humid, the clouds were low and the road still had standing water on the shoulder. it was cool and nice.
I almost broke at the same point where i turned around the week before but i pressed on. i was giggling, groaning and grunting for the rest of the way but i sure was having a blast!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Quote this!

Do all the good you can. By all means you can. In all the ways you can. In all the places you can. At all the times you can. To all the people you can. As long as you ever can. - John Wesley

Think of giving not as a duty but as a privilege. - John D. Rockefeller

One pardons to the degree that one loves. - Francois De La Rochefoucauld

You've got to get up every morning with determination if you're going to go to bed with satisfaction. - George Horace Latimer

Even if you are on the right track you'll get run over if you just sit there. - Arthur Godfrey

Try not to be a person of success but rather a person of value. - Albert Einstein

Rider's Log 7.15.07- Troll!

I rode my mountain bike about 13 miles Monday morning along the open space trail that runs through the city. It was the usual on this trail - feeling great on the way out, cruising along, passing joggers, exchanging "good mornings" with people out early, wondering how i got in such good shape so fast.
Then, somehow, it happens. Whenever i reach my turn around point on this trail, someone, something, sneaks out and attaches a 31.6 pound invisible sled to my bike. I never see it happen although i always keep a look out for this person, this troll; but, i know it has happened because i feel myself dragging it all the way home. i can't see it. i can't hear it. it doesn't even leave marks in the trail, but it is obviously there.
This morning - same ride, same experience. I hope to out run that troll someday. Kick it in the teeth. leave it behind.
I looked in the mirror a while back and realizee that the same troll had attached a 20 pound giant bagel around my waist. damn troll. (and all along i thought i was eating ice cream..not bagels. i hardly ever eat bagels anymore. how'd i get a bagel around me. looks like a damn floatie. a water melon even.)

the good news in it all is that i've got 25 miles done so far this week. my long ride this week will be Friday morning early. my goal is 75 for the week.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Wisdom of Ralph 2

I really love the Simpson's. Ralph is one of my favs. He's the kid no one wants to hang around with. The one that's always saying stupid things. The ultimate marginalized child. In my business, that makes him my hero.

If rice is wiggling, it's not rice.
If you put something far enough back in your nose, it will come out your mouth.
A puppy can grow up to be president of America, but a kitten cannot.

I ate a smelly toadstool,
like a happy little elf.
I danced around the meadow,
and then i soiled myself.

I ate an orange crayon.
I drank from a big cup.
I ate a bunch of cat food,
then i puked it up.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Made it! First Goal Achieved

my Triumphal Entrance into the Rocky Mountains!
i set out from home yesterday and rode 1.5 hours due west and i made it well into the mountains- a mile or two at least. it was so excellent to reach that goal, be in the mountains and feel that sense of accomplishment. it's also amazing to me how fast the scenery changes - plants, landscape, air, roads - all of it. a ride due west here is a steady climb so it's quite a workout for me right now. felt great. next time i go that route, i'll take a some pics to post.
the ride yesterday was 3 hours. 1.5 out and then took a big loop back - north on hwy 93 to 72, Simms south, 108th back towards home. i figure that it was about 40 miles. (42 - i drove it at lunch 7.23)
hey, main reason i'm posting this is so i can have a log of what i've done. not really doing it to impress any readers. mostly so i can keep track of where i've been.
i fully expect that in a month or two i'll make it to the same point west in far less time and it'll be good to read this and consider the progess i've made.

Friday, July 20, 2007


"Duh" is a highly efficient word. obvious. no brainer. stupid. didn't you know that?
how many uses are there for "duh?"

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Bottle Caps

I love Bottle Caps candy. Brown ones are the best. they taste like...ummm....like....i know!... they taste like brown Bottle Caps!

Ride again

this morning i started out from the house at 6 thinking i would ride to where i work so i would know how long it would take. (i'm sure that in the near future i will ride to work instead of driving. if for no other reason, it'll let me roll my bike into my office for the day and i'll feel really cool with my bike sitting there.) anyway, i set my cell alarm and planned to ride for 48 minutes and turn around at that point and head home.
i didn't make it to work.
those big mountains just draw me towards them. instead of heading south after a few miles of west, i just kept going west. it was a great route because i realized that there is a sweet bike lane on 88th ave and the traffic is not bad because it's all residential in that direction. the bike lane turns into a decent shoulder at Indiana as 88th turns into highway 72. The traffic at 6:30 a.m. was slim out there. If you're from around here, you know that anything that leads west from I-25 is uphill to some degree.It took me 48 minutes out and 30 minutes back. i had a great grind up and a quick spin down and discovered a new route.
on my drive in to work this morning, i drove what i rode. it's 10.3 miles one way. that's great news because it means i did 20+ miles in an hour and 20. i think my saturday ride will take me all the way to the mountains...for the first time in about 10 years.

Monday, July 16, 2007

UNlazy man update

yesterday was good. as i wrote in my last post, i rode for an hour yesterday morning and did my usual sunday morning stuff. the kids were out and about at friends' houses so i spent some time waiting for them, picking them up and shuttling them about; i really didn't get home until 4:00. I watched a DVD from last week's camp and followed that with a short couch snooze. took A over to Curt's and while he cut the grass, I sent text messages and played tetris.
finally ended up on the roof at 7:30 to replace the motor for the cooler. m helped some. that was cool 'cause i need the help and his neighborhood friends were riding around and he got to be seen as a mechanic guy while he watched them from the rooftop vantage point. new motor is on and working like a charm.

i rose early again this morning (5:30) and rode for an hour and 15. since this is the first back to back ride i've done in a loong time, my legs were tired from yesterday; they were tight and felt as if they were going to cramp. they didn't cramp. i rode, and it was a blast as always. rode west out to the business park i discovered a few weeks ago and explored some neighborhoods near there. the business park is a cool place to ride. it's new. streets are wide and make a long loop. barely anyone that works in all those offices goes to work before 8 am.

i plan on making some people uncomfortable at work today. us barbarians can't have fun unless we are causing trouble, right? i'll keep you posted.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

unLazY maN

okay...it's 8 am and i've already been on an hour ride and taken a shower. i got up at 5:15 and rode! woohoo.
my lungs felt good and legs felt a little stronger than last week. i think it was the week at 9000 ft. and the walking i did with L.
tomorrow i'm going to get up early again and do 2 hours before work.
now...off to to the rest of the list.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

LAzy maN with a question

L and the kids went down south to see her sis and family before they cruise back to N. Carolina.
I stayed back so I could ride, fix the cooler on the roof and spend a few at the office.
I didn't ride.
I did buy a new motor for the cooler fan and made an attempt to install. (Need another run to Home Depot for a new pulley.)
Spent hours online cruising blogs. it's fascinating to me to read about other people in other places. why? what do i get from it? what do i hope to get from it? connection with other people? anyone have insight for me on this? i need to understand myself on this one. LP, any ideas?
i'm at the office now. finishing a bit of work. mark that off the list, at least.
tomorrow i will get up way early to ride for a bit.
i will replace the cooler motor.
i will cut the grass and do some yard work.
i will take A to cut Curt's grass. (good friends that are out of town)
i might even do more than that...we'll see.

Friday, July 13, 2007


A nice and tranquil scene at the camp. L and I walked for an hour and 20 minutes yesterday morning and an hour the morning before. no slow walking allowed. it was good exercise.

Thursday, July 12, 2007


This camp is a good example of giving and taking energy; waiting to get it, feeding off of it or not waiting for it and giving it in order to give it back. A band might say after a concert, "man, that was a great crowd. i could really feed off of their energy. we played our best show!" Or, "The crowd was dead to start. we really had to work our a@#$% off to get them."
The staff of this camp is nice enough. Good people, safe people, nice people. The leadership just hasn't built a culture of enthusiasm, energy, excitement and expectancy into the way they do things. The biggest missing element is encouragement and friendliness. "Hey John! Good morning! How are you doing today?" doesn't happen too much. "Thanks for coming up this week to speak at camp." "It's great to have you here." It seems that if a connection, a spark is going to be made, it's going to come from my end. People aren't overly friendly and they don't reach out to people well. I, as a guest speaker, stick my hand out to meet people or i have to start conversations. I believe that he Program Director should be coming up to me, encouraging me, encouraging the other staff, pumping them up and making everyone feel known and loved. He just doesn't connect well. He's all task and no people. well, not entirely no people, just way more task. He doesn't make eye contact often, even when he is talking to a group of 100 kids. i don't get feedback from him, positive or negative, or from the guy who is my main contact. (one might think at this point, "john, maybe you suck at being a camp speaker and that's why you aren't getting it." but i know it's not true. i've asked a few - wife, son, other - and they are positive about what i am doing. plus, i know i don't suck. i'm doing well this week.)
So on the energy thing. It's a situation where i know i need to "Bring it" instead of get it from the crowd. I need to give it off rather than wait to be energized by the staff.
It's a leadership thing. If the key leaders of the camp pumped their teams up and taught them to pump others full of enthusiasm, reach out and be friendly, it would make all the difference in the world.
Note to self - "Bring It" with my organization back home. Learn the lesson and live it, too.

Camp Week

Spending a week speaking at a camp outside of Estes Park, Colorado. Doing two motivational talks each night. I have tons of free time during the day to hang with L and A. T, M, and L2 are campers this week, running around and having fun. The camp is adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park. Here's the view from the camp. The center peak is 14,259 foot Long's Peak and on the left is 13,911 foot Mt Meeker. The peak on the right is Mt Lady Washington only comes in at 13,211 which is kinda small by local standards.

First Ride and home alone

I took the bike out this evening for the first official ride. Two things - what a great ride and I am SO out of shape right now. i only rode for an hour; the wind was stiff from the south.
The bike rides really well. Stiff and sort of plush at the same time. I went up to around 30 mph on a downhill and it was super steady and felt very secure. The shifting is pretty crisp most of the time and the climbing is solid (i have to assume because i am a slug)
i got honked at by to a-hole drivers within about a half mile. a wuss in a lexus and a punk in a blazer. i let them know they were invited to come back for a piece of my bike pump in their face. it's amazing to me that people do that - especially with all the "share the road" signs around in the area.
L and the kids went to her parents house today for a planned visit. her sister and family is (are?) coming into town on tuesday so they'll all get to hang at her parents for 4 days. i get to be home alone for the week. it'll be nice to relax and be casual about everything. waking up, eating, sleeping, clothes, no clothes, tv, movies - everything.
i'm going to go up there for the 4th.

Tuesday Mornings

Many of us struggle with our bosses at work, don't we?
My boss boss is uninspiring and pretty unwilling to lead. He doesn't have a mindset to caste vision for what the future can be with the organization as a whole and he doesn't have a bone in his body to kick A and hold people accountable. He's unwilling to offend on principal and he's either completely clueless about leading an organization or he is completely evil and scheming. i don't think it's the later.
While i run the semi-independent division that mentors children, he is responsible for the overall organization. He works directly with the Board and has his hands in many things - unless having his hand in it means it might get burned. "no pain, please. this should be comfortable, right?"
Tuesday morning staff meetings are typical of his lack of leadership. Today's 1.75 hour meeting could have been done in 20 minutes. 20 minutes that needed us all present. The rest was strictly informational and could have been done in an email.
It's frustrating. He has read the right books but minimalizes and rationalizes why he can't do what he reads. He has hired 4 staff people recently from thriving, growing, contemporary programs that he would like to duplicate; yet, he refuses to let them(us) advise him from our experience. "It can't be done!" he says.
I know I have a part to play here in developing my division. I am wired to think of greater vision and plans for the future. I think in terms of values and purpose. I do have wide open possibilities to the extent that I can plan, prepare, lead and influence. There is, however, no greater compelling vision that motivates the whole organization and calls the people to something better. This will always limit us.
Because of that, I have to sit in on an intensely boring "administrative" meeting every Tuesday. I don't like administrative.

Road Bike!

I spent 4 hours test riding bikes yesterday. I started looking at the aluminum/carbon frames and gradually moved on to the full carbon bikes. I bought a Trek Pilot 5.0 which is full carbon, Ultegra/105 drivetrain, cane creek brakes and bontrager race wheels. I really can tell the difference between a $1500 bike and a $2000 bike so I knew I had to get out of there before I decided to try a $2500 bike! I love this bike.


Had a great leadership team meeting last night. The team wants to build this program in a healthy way. That means saying "no" to good things right now. They agree that we need to narrow the focus and do one thing REALLY well before we start doing too many things and become mediocre. What a huge relief. This is a really good. Now we need to take this out to the whole organization to get complete commitment.

Took L, A and T to breakfast this morning. L and I are proceeding delicately. Things are okay. Problems still lurk beneath the surface and we both know that too well. She didn't mention if she scheduled the first marriage doctor appointment. I didn't ask.
Watched youtube vids of guitar greats with A this morning. Turning him on to DiMeola, McLaughlin, Coryell, Morse, Vai and more. It's fun! He likes Hendrix a lot! All is well. I can die happy.

Will go bike shopping tonight! yeehaw!

I love my kids so much. So much joy interacting with them. SO MUCH! thank God for my children. My family.

"Breathe Into Me" by RED is a good tune.


I figured out that i worked 72 hours last week serving over 700 children and 250 adults. 22 of the hours i worked were from saturday morning at 9 a.m. until sunday at 2 p.m. woosh.
the recovery has started. i slept in - 1 hour. felt like crap when i woke up. took tylenol 'cause my body won't let me change my schedule without punishing me and went to coffee with one of my lead team members. great conversation. he's liking what i am doing with the organization and is ready to change faster. don't think he would have been this way 9 months ago. i'll take the credit; at least some of the credit.
at home L tried to bully confront me out of my week long funk. didn't work. i walked away from the insults. she took a shot at me while i was sitting on the couch next to T. cheap. bad form even for an argument. left for work telling her that i wasn't playing games. i simply had nothing to give her emotionally. i didn't want to engage and take the shots. my fuse was too short and the kids were around.
on the drive to work it exploded. the pussy, oozing sore of a hurting relationship. she called, said i was stupid, i hung up. called her back and let it fly. she let it fly. 20 minutes of letting it fly that felt like crashing into a ditch full of shit.
we are back to "we need help. i love you. i'm mad at you. we need help." she's making the calls today because i don't care WHO we see as long as we see. she can pick so she doesn't throw a bad counselor fit back in my face later. i'm all for it. heck. she won't even let me pick dinnner. "I just want to go where you want to go," she says. Riiiiiiight, dear.

working half days M-W. off thurs-sat. should be good. needed and good.
regards to all

The Tank Is Empty

I've gotten to the point where i my tank is empty. i'm losing my capacity and desire to be patient with people or to connect with people and try to interact with them. I've been working everyday for two weeks straight to pull of a week long big event for 550 children and 200+ volunteers. It's warn me down and it's about the busiest week of the year.
My love capacity with my wife is really low right now. I haven't been connecting well with her over the last week and a half. It's been horrible. I don't have the will to call her, apologize and start the mending process. Even as i write this, i don't feel like i have the brain power or emotional power to describe what's been happening and how i feel.
at times like this i am most inclined to do stupid things - pursuing thoughts of things that bring quick satisfaction but long term destruction. porn. looking for stupid relationships. wasting time. i don't have a porn problem; i have a tired problem. when i'm tired i want to look at porn and find a bad relationship. (i've never done the relationship thing) both things that take me away from the way i know i should live life.
i need a break. i need some rest, recreation and relaxation. when i have the chance to read, meditate, play and pray, my tank gets refilled. time spent doing this will fill my tank as fast as anything and the bonus for me is that i have discovered i can do this really well when i am on the bike. i need to take a long ride and get lost in my legs spinning, dragging over hills, dipping deep into my endurance. i need something basic and primal and i need to accomplish something that is only dependent on me, myself and i.

the cost of overeating

i heard this morning on a network morning show that americans spend over 1 billion on weight loss solutions each year. that is money spent to help them lose the weight they put on mostly because they/we/me overindulge in food (being pigs and hogs; of which i am moderately guilty) so i thought, "what if we changed suddenly and only ate what we needed; what if we took the saved $ and used it to help starving people? not only would we have the food savings money to spend, but also the 1 billion that wouldn't need to be spent on weight loss." that's what i thought. billions to help other people.

"and what an f@$&ed up world it is." Bono

The Wisdom of Ralph

I like Ralph Wiggum from the Simpson's because he's marginalized. He's pushed out of the circle and tough to love.
Here's wisdom from Ralph:
"When I'm sick, my tummy makes floor soup."
"Socks are not as funny as they smell."
"It tastes like burning!"

I Wonder What Would Happen

I wonder what would happen if I got my life to work the way I wanted it to work. Would it be better or would it be a wreck?
What do you think? More on this later...

Here's the later...it'll never work the way i want it to work - and that is a good thing. i'd be a mess if the desires of my heart came true and i'd be empty.

Words of Affirmation

I need 'em. I need people to tell me they like me, they like what I did, they like how I look, they like what I said. I used to think that touch was the way I needed love expressed but now I'm pretty darn sure that words do it for me. I'm looking for love and I need people to tell me they like and love me.
The funny part of the equation is that I am very weak at handing out and giving out words of affirmation. I need to be better at that. That's kind of wacky, don't you think?
Hey, you are wonderful for reading and leaving a comment that is so thoughtful and considerate. (practicing words of affirmation...)

A Gentle Answer

A Gentle Answer repost

A gentle answer turns away wrath but a harsh word stirs up anger.
Be comletely humble and gentle. Be patient bearing with one anther in love.
Be slow to speak and slow to anger.
17 years ago I was loud, outspoken and impulsive. I would say what was on my mind bluntly, without much of a filter or regard to sensitivity or appropriateness. I think that I had a lot of "oops, i wish I didn't say that" moments every week but i didn't even know that they were those moments. As I became more sensitive to the feelings of other people I really did not like the way it felt to stick my foot in my mouth. It was painful and embarassing and it became something I wanted to avoid. I realized that my skilled sarcasm was funny but was usually at the expense of someone else or it made people wary of me and I learned that if I wanted the love from people I was seeking that I would have to be a kinder and gentler person.

Confrontation and Accountability

As a manager of paid and volunteer staff, confrontation and accountability are so much part of my life and so foreign to me at the same time. I haven't been at this long, about 3 years, and I come from 10 years of teaching children where the confrontation and accountability are so different. (or are they? the thought occured to me as i write that maybe i should treat them the same...thoughts?)
Part of my difficulty with confrontation and accoutability comes from my relationship with my father and the unsafe, explosive way he modeled doing life. My mom had a role in it, too. Hiding while my dad stormed; making peace before there was ever a conflict and being an expert in passive-aggresive behavior.
Combine these factors and you have me who gets really nervous when I have to confront behavior in adults and I cork my feelings and avoid doing what is right. I go into an ultra calm, unemotional and expressionless mode that helps me to avoid exploding but has many shades of passive aggresion. People know I'm bugged about something but they don't know what. The result may be that everyone thinks I'm bugged with them or that I have no passion for what I am doing since I control my emotions too well.
I really don't know when I should show my passion for my work and how important I think it is. I'm very confused. I came across this quote today on another Blog and it is good wisdom for me.
Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by Dogma ~ which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."
~ Steve Jobs
I do feel trapped by Dogma and that other people's opinions drown out my inner voice. I need courage to lead and to trust my instincts and beat the influences of the past that slow me down. It's so tough for me to balance out my drive and my need to make sure other people feel good about themselves and me. Is this codependancy?
I am a conflicted man but I carry on.

"ies" "just and "kind of"

Something that REALLY bothers me is putting "ies" on the end of a word. For example - "veggies" or "snackie" food - two words that make my skin crawl. Don't know why; it just happens.
Also, I'm really annoyed with the use of the words "just" and "kind of" as a way to be weak in communicating. "I just wanted to let you that we kind of decided that you are fired." Listen and you'll hear it often. It's weak and they are useless words in most contexts. Especially annoying is using the word "just" in prayer. It minimizes our permission to go before God boldly. What do you think?