La Vida Wanker

La Vida Wanker

Monday, August 30, 2010

Important Pre-Post Race Updates

Junior Racing

Pro Wanker has its sight set on big things—sponsoring teams, hosting races, running wanking clinics... Essentially, making the world a much more wankable place. In that vein, it looks like Pro Wanker will be sponsoring a weekend of junior racing this coming summer. What does this mean? Well, a BIG PRIZE-LIST ($1000+) for an omnium of junior racing and, I pray god, huge fields. Yeah, top down economics are a sham, but in honor of Ronald Reagan and the Dixon Crit, I’ll give it a shot. Wanna help? Drop me a line.

Pro Wanker p/b Project 69 Kits
The moment you’ve all been eagerly awaiting: I am taking preliminary orders on the 2010/2011 Team Pro Wanker p/b Project 69 Racing team kits. As you know, the 2009/2010 kits were a huge success. Many races won, bystanders shocked (no pun intended), and friends made under the Pro Wanker banner. For 2010, look
for the classic pink and white 69 booties to make a return. In a break from the past, the kits will be classy and clean. Minimal wankage, tons of pink style. Don’t believe me, just ask my V-neck loving Aussie friends. For those of you without any faith in a kid who wears nothing but cycling Ts, the design will be posted in the coming two weeks. For now, shoot me an email or FB PM if you’re interested. I don’t need to know how much you are buying. That comes later. For now, just let me know if you would be interested in making a purchase. And spread the word! Each purchase either A) makes me richer B) Helps junior racing.

(In the past, these were sold with no intention of making a profit. This year, all money collected will go toward junior racing, not my pocketbook.)

Diet Update

In the wild, animals forage for food. Squirrels dart about collecting nuts, hiding them away for times of future famine. In the kitchen, I too make my rounds. When all are asleep, I descend the stairs and make my way to the pantry. Silently opening the door and inserting my hand, I search for food. Popcorn is a usual target, but the white crackly crumbs tend to reveal my presence. Pretzels are nice, but not my favorite nighttime food. Generally, I favor candy.

To my dismay, I was thwarted this weekend. As I crammed my arm onto the shelf that generally holds the nuts, my fingers were delighted to find hard, round, little candies. The bag that held the treasures certainly felt promising—it had the distinct crinkling crackle of a m&m package. As I withdrew my fist filled of candy, I was surprised. The orbs were spherical and larger than usual. In a moment of hysteria, I imagined them each to be little peanut m&ms. Greedily, I thrusted the fistful into my mouth and began to masticate. Soon enough, a terrible horror betrayed itself. These were no peanut m&ms. These were pretzel m&ms. Perhaps, dipped in chocolate peanut butter these so called candies may regain their flavor. But consumed as packaged, they are no more than dry, disappointing rat droppings


As you may know, I love TTs. Rather than the infamous Watts/KJ predicting performance, the much more generous (to the aerodynamically obsessed but obese) Watts/m^2 predicts performance. Riders who obsess over this number—a number most are blissfully unaware of—are my favorite fellows. One such cyclist is Kent Bostick. I don’t know much about this guy. I hear he was a huge wanker back in the day. But this pic is all the proof I need. Not only is this former national tt champ riding an aero or die setup, but he’s on a Hooker TT bike with mismatched wheels. Yes, the men who made my front brake actually made an entire bike. (A darn fast one, too!) If I could find this bike, I would buy it, race it, and die a happy man. If I could find this man, I would marry him in whichever state allowed such an unholy union.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Pre Race Updates

1) I know this one is circling the Facebooks and blogosphere, but here it is: Lance wants to tell you something, so long as you promise not to get angry.

2) In Soviet Russia, picture take you. Well, in Tsarist Russia, anyway. (Click on the link, fool.)

3) Anyone who knows me knows I make many excuses. For example, I lost the crit because there was a right turn. Or I’m starting my diet tomorrow because today is my Hebrew birthday, and I want a piece or three of cake. Whatever the situation, I seem able to create totally inexcusable excuses.

When it comes to Pro Wanker clothing, my excuses are actually valid. About now, I should be redesigning the Pro Wanker kits using Adobe. Unfortunately, my pirated/cracked/hacked version of the software has stopped working. Unless I shell out 700 bucks, I’m SOL. But fear not fellow wankers, where there is a will there is a wank.

4) I never know if I should laugh or cry at the Rapha promo material. On one hand, it’s terribly pretentious in the way a Kiton suit looks ridiculous on a trust fund baby. On the other hand, the suit makes the man. And a Kiton suit is a very fine suit. Anyway, this video is pretty awesome. I wish we could do something like this in WI or IL. Oh wait, we kinda do have that. But it’s called the Tour de Cheese, and is top secret.

5) Apparently, Vladimir Putin plans to drive across Russia in commemoration of the completion of Russia’s first continuous transcontinental highway. Congrats Putin, you’ve officially caught up to the U.S.'s Lincoln Highway circa 1913. Congrats.

6) In other ridiculous news, Facebook wants to patent the use of the word “face.” Yeah. Great.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Race the Lake

I apologize in advance if the following post offends you. If you are offended, realize that this is satire or comedy or incisive political commentary or something. Whatever it takes, just don't be angry at me.

(If you're a triathlete, I am very sorry to hear that and wish you a speedy and full recovery.)

Finally, I'm sorry but I have no photos from this weekend. It was simply too dangerous to use a camera.

Everybody knows it. But few say it. Maybe it’s because of the NAACP, the PC Police or the ACLU. It might even be because of common decency. Regardless of reasoning, few can spew it: You never go full retard.

It’s that simple. It’s that clear. As evident as gravity—you go in full retard, you go home
empty handed.

Well, I did it. I went full retard with $20,000 on the line. And I came home...

The Interwebs

For years, I’ve dreamt of returning to l'Abitibi. The smell of burning flesh and melting carbon, the sound of cracking Zipps and screaming Frenchmen is seared into my mind. The memories are painful, but they drip with a blood sweeter than any known nectar.

But memories fade. And as they fade, I die. I am an addict. I need my year fix.

So Race the Lake (RtL) became my high—a substitute for my l'Abitibi lust. But they are two very different drugs. l’Abitibi is a UCI stage race. RtL is an unsanctioned citizen race. l'Abitibi has the world’s best junior cyclists. RtL has the world's worst tri-tards and recreational cyclists.

Despite their difference, they share two things in coming: Speed and insanity.

The Start

In bike racing, you receive a bib number to race with. In triathlon, your body is marked with black marker. Tri-tards are notoriously poor bike handlers and crash with frightening regularity. Despite the slow speeds of their crashes, limbs are often lost or mutilated. Because of body markings, medical can piece together the bodies post race.

I am a bike racer. But at RtL, we are all wankers. So I surrendered my dignity and was body marked.

The Atmosphere

In the moment, there is too much happening to enjoy anything. Each idiot and every wanktastic happening drips over into the next. Through the fog of walkability, individual idiots are nearly impossible to discern.

At RtL, this concept is magnified. Tri-tards running into cones and flipping over. Wankers breaking away in the last meters only to take a wrong turn and forfeit large sums of money. Carbon wheels exploding. Behind the seat bottles ejecting.

The Race

While Kenda and Aerocat were menacing, we had our hopes. Josh (IsCorp) can sprint with the best and Brian Rach (IsCorp) can steamroll anyone. As we rolled out of town, we situated ourselves at the front. Brian led Josh, and I followed—ready to surrender a wheel, bottle or bar.

Quickly, I found myself near
The Man Who is Fall (Steve Tilford). Riding his wheel was an experience–so smooth, so sad and so right. At 32 mph we cruised. Occasionally, he would tell me a story. Not a word was spoken without smile.

Occasionally, a recumbent would come past and crash. Or a tandem would shoot up and veer into the wrong lane of traffic. But we continued at our pace until the halfway point and the start of the "big hill".


Readers of my blog know this—I really dislike racing hills. Well, we hit the climb and the only thing I can think about is my eight bottles weighing me down. Until the false flat, I stay on. But as the road tips up for the final crest, I lose ground.

But a descent looms. With a small group or riders, I manage to latch back on. Crisis averted, I go to Josh and quickly give him a bottle.

The Finish

Trying to organize a train at the front of a 1400 man strong race is insane. It’s even crazier when half the team is on one side of the road and the other half is missing. With a break up the road, we needed to organize. But time began slipping, and there was nothing we could do. Coming into the finish, Brach managed to up the pace and Josh was given a small lead-out. Flying into the finish, he takes second in the field sprint.

Additional thoughts:

Pro Wanker: Thompson Remo (IsCorp) rides up to me in the closing miles. “Scott, do you have any food I can eat?” Before he even finishes the sentence, he begins to crack a smile. No duh, I have food.

Wanker: You’re 40+ and you have a hairy ass. For some reason, you wear shorts that explode on you. For 90 miles, people have to stare at your hairy ass.

Pro Wanker: We’re racing at 30 mph. Some wanker on a moto pulls up next to me and starts honking. For a moment, I am dumbstruck. Then I realize: This is Swamp Monster. And the chick on the back—it doesn’t even matter who she is. It’s just perfect.

Wanker: The wind is coming from the right. On open roads, we move into the left lane. Oncoming traffic is forced to drive in the wrong lane.

Pro Wanker: An Aerocat rider throws his timing chip across the line in the sprint.

Wanker: Heagney rides with tri-up-the-ass-spokes and a camelback.

Pro Wanker: You break away and are sitting in 5th place coming into the final Ks. You take a wrong turn and disappear in shame.

Wanker: You are a triathlete. Surprisingly, you don’t brake after the finish and ram into the guard rails.

Pro Wanker: You’re not parked in the race lot. Your lot is barricaded and swarming with finishing riders. You need to leave. You take down the fencing and drive your sedan on the sidewalk. Yep. That was me.

Wanker: You ride a tri bike, wear compression socks and an aero helmet, use race wheels and finish at 13mph average.

Pro Wanker: Your longest ride of the year has been 2:30 at active recovery pace. Your saddle is broken. You are riding super fragile Mavic Carboners with carbon spokes. Your race is over three hours long at a high pace and requires durable equipment. Yep. That was me.

Wanker: You wake up at 3:45 am to race.

Pro Wanker: You eat chocolate chip and banana pancakes for breakfast at 3:45 am. (Me again.)

Wanker: You are riding next to Spider Monkey. You blurt out, “I’m too old for this shit.” He says, “You’re too smart for this shit.” The Man Who is Fall turns his head and laughs.

Pro Wanker: Adam Bergman (Roadhouse) using an iPhone as a bike computer.

As much as I love RtL, I don't know if I can return for another year. Yes, the money is great. And yes, the people are fun to laugh at. But the odds of dying are pretty damn high. If I race again, I will have to fully embrace the situation. Perhaps an armored tandem is in order.


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Racing for Negative Time

Their faces have long ago lost expression. Decayed by heat and exhaustion, muscle droops. Flesh once taught and lean is oblong and atrophied. Sweat is everywhere and the hot van is bathed in heavy metal music.

Kentucky recedes into memory. Canada awaits.

Against failure, dark humor becomes the final respite. Each has his dream. All share a common joke: What sport could a flabby fellow excel in?

Luge is considered, but this fellow cannot turn. Competitive eating is a candidate, but he can only eat kosher hot dogs. And sadly, at the peak of the sport, such meat is not served. Diving sounds promising, but the flab would prevent spry movements.

Time trialling is his strength, but he is simply not strong enough. Decent results are doable. Anything more is unachievable.

So dejected and without answer, they continue on.

Canada recedes into memory; each goes his own way. One flees to the forests of Wisconsin to train for another sport. Another reaches into the near professional ranks of cycling. One returns to conquer the beast. Another is beset by injury. The wisest heads to Arizona for school.

The final fellow—the fellow of the flab—retreats into mediocrity, enjoying every moment. But his happiness is tinged with an unpalatable sadness. Something goes unaccomplished.

He searches for fulfillment—the old quest resumed. But nowhere can it be found. That is, until he happens upon a race—The Tour de Donut, scheduled for September 18th.

His eyes water in joy: A 30 mile TT punctuated by two donut stops where each donut consumed counts for a five minute reduction in time.

The master of mediocrity may have just found his niche of excellence.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Wanker of the Year Award Nominee

Every year, summer seems to expire the same way. I tell my mom I’m heading out for a ride and head to the local candy store for some ice cream. On the radio, I hear a back to school advertisement.

In years past, a shiver would descend my spine sending tears into my cookie dough ice cream.

These days, I weep for my siblings, not myself. College is not high school, thankfully. And sadly.

Anyway, it’s time for a midweek update.

Captain Higgins is my favorite parasitic flatworm. (Trust me, this link is worth the click. Please, trust me.)

2) Team Pro Wanker will be working on Wanker of the Year Awards (WOTY). An early nominee: John Tomlinson. He’s in Italy for WORLDS.
He’s trained his ass—not just this year, but ever since I’ve known him for this opportunity. He’s focused mentally and physically on the races ahead of him. Years of dedication, sacrifice and pain are on the line. Except one thing has gone awry. He’s missing his bike. Yeah, thank you airlines. Thanks a metric ton.

4) Using footage from the Tour of Elk Grove, I am working on a Leibo video profile. Think Shark Week. Except better. Why better? Do sharks eat donuts and win track races? I think not.

Now, time for things a bit more serious:

1) The Glencoe Crit is this weekend. While I hate bike racing and find crits to be an utter waste of time, I’m excited for this event. Glencoe is a cool suburb, it’s fun to watch the pros race and the 1/2 purse is solid. While I’m excited to race (I mean,
participate), part of me will be missing Downers Grove. Here’s to hoping we can get that race running again next year.

2) Junior racing isn’t doing too well locally. While the Memorial Day Weekend Iowa/IL series draws some serious racers, local junior racing is pathetic. This is depressing. Juniors are the key to the future of this sport. I don’t know how to solve the problem, but we need to get working on it. Pro Wanker wants to do its part. Next year, look for one local crit and track race to receive Pro Wanker funding for a sizable junior purse. Yeah, it’s still just an idea. But we have to start somewhere, right?

Until the weekend—


Monday, August 9, 2010

Two Too Many

For a long time, people have questioned me. Maybe it’s my flamboyant, pink Snuggie or the white Pro Wanker bibs. It might even be my weekend wardrobe. Regardless of origin, a rumour persists. While I may often mislead, I rarely lie. So it’s about time I come out of the closet: I time my posts to get linked to on Yes, a blogger blogging to gain the attention of another blogger. How cool.

Two-a-days are terrible. But just how terrible?

Imagine eating a slice of pie. Let’s pretend it’s key lime pie. But not just any key lime pie, this is Joe Stone Crab’s Key Lime Pie. For the unacquainted, with each bite, there is an explosion of tart tempered by the buttery crumbling of graham cracker crust. A single sliver equal an addiction.

(Trust me; I’m fat.)

One slice is very good. For when you finish the last fork-full, the taste is amplified by a desire for more. You are not full. Your belly yearns for more. And this desire mingles with the residual taste. You find yourself in love.

Heck, one whole pie can be good. You may be full, but you want more. You think you can handle the load.

Unfortunately though, after so many bites, pleasure turns to pain. Two pies in a single day may just be too much.

Likewise, two races in a single day can be just too much. Especially when one race is a 40k TT.

A 40K First

Coming into the WI State TT Championship, my expectations were low. The previous week of training was double my regular volume. (8 v.s. 4 hrs=tired.) Additionally, I had skipped breakfast while looking for my TT bike, car keys and wheels.

Thankfully, my good luck did not end on the driveway. With my exit closed, I embarked on a risky detour leaving me with just enough time to register, kit-up and ride to the start-line. As usual, there would be no warmup.

And as usual, there would be nothing but jeering at the start-line. While I managed to stay upright, the acceleration was painfully slow and labored. But as they say of trains, once up to speed, I was not stopping.

(That is, for anything but turns. They require super slow speed on my aero or die setup.)

Slowly and determinedly, I passed my minute-man and his minute-man. Naturally, I dropped my chain on a course that required no shifting from big to little ring. But the bumps were not mountains and I crossed the line in 53:04, enough for second place in the 1/2s.

Not surprisingly, the jeers turned into quizzical stares when the crowd paired the bike with the boy.

(Another kid who had a great ride: Jordan Cullen as pictured right. He killed the 20k.)

Next Up: Critification

From Wisconsin, I made the drive home to wash and pickup my road bike for the Grayslake Crit.

For those who have never raced the event, the course looks something like the Ten Commandments. With that in mind, I donned my Project 69 Pro Wanker booties and skinsuit.

And with IsCorp fielding six riders (including myself), I was fairly certain that we could do some damage.

Our plan was simple: Attack and win. From the gun, we hit the field. Our big guns attacked, James and Chazz hid in the field and I used my girth and height to block all lines of sight and movement.

With Kyle Jacobson and Tristan off the front but within sight, blocking became crucial. The field was having none of it though. Bryan McVey (ReCycling), Death (the Kenda rider), Stathy (Albertos) and Sachs (VQ) traded attacks wearing us thin.

But for 60 minutes we held strong. No man escaped off the front.

Suddenly, Death attacks. Fearing his sprint, I was unwilling to let him escape unescorted—lest he bridge to my teammates. Following my wheel, a xXx racer closed the final meters and joined Death.

As I latched on, I hit the right turn. Sadly, I was having difficulty turning right and braked too much. Quickly, I was dropped.

Upon reintegration with the field, I exploded. My legs and heart were empty. Thankfully, Chazz, Alex and James took up the pace and managed to bring back the small chase.

While Stathy, Otte (unattached) and a xXx rider escaped in the closing minutes of the race, we finished 1,2,6,7 and 10th. It was a successful day.

So yes, two pies may be too much for me. But two races? Maybe not.

Monday, August 2, 2010

A Summer Wanking Update

At some point, every blogger must chose to create original, interesting content or aggregate, link and regurgitate. Naturally, any self-respecting writer would choose the former option.

But considering that a) the act of blogging strips one of all dignity and b) anyone writing original, interesting content isn’t blogging, most bloggers find themselves pulling a Drudge Report.

Surprisingly then, my regurgitation has been fairly mild until now. Sure, I’ve had a few cross posts, but i’m still fairly clean for a chump without any dignity.

However, my time available for blogging has recently decreased while my small, albeit loyal, readers continue to salivate for new content.

To help bridge the gap, I think a weekly (bi-weekly?) aggregator post is in order. No, this won’t be a bunch of links accompanied by cute captions, but a few solid paragraphs.

(Don’t feel shortchanged, it’s not like you read the full articles anyway.)

Yeah, the race reports will keep coming. And I’ll still do the artsy stuff. But I’ll also be doing these new posts. So in reality, I’ll be posting more frequently? In other news, I make no sense.


1) Have you ever wondered what it’s like to become a doper? Have you fantasized over the sting of the syringe and the corresponding increasing in strength, speed and stamina? Well then, you may be a fan of David Millar and Team Garmin Transitions.

(I’m not saying Millar continues to dope or Garmin has any team doping program. I just find it funny how that team finds so many TDF GC talents from nowhere... Hesjedal, CVV, Wiggo. They may even do a better job than Mr. 60% himself, Riis.)

2) Every race promoter and his mother is bitching that he can’t find sponsorship money. If I were them, I’d be more concerned about finding junior racers, but that’s just me. And heaven knows what happens when you do as I say. (Just look at my TT bike.) Anyway, ever wonder what true poverty is? Ever wonder what life really looked like back in the day.

3) Most candy tastes good. Freezing things tends to make them taste better. Ergo, frozen candy is really, really good. However, frozen 3 Musketeers bars are not good. Trust me on this one. Stick to the Snickers.

Until later,