Thursday, January 22, 2009

First LT test: 2009

Ughh.

Last night check workout e-mail.
BC says test.

Get up, 6 a.m.
Dark.
Inside, bleh.
Trainer, double bleh.

Set iPod to Machinehead.
Warm up.
Feel not so bad
but not so good either
Ugh.

Start.
First minute feels Nice.
5 minutes in, don't feel so good

8 minutes in
Make deals with self

10 minutes
halfway done
still half to go
Ugh.

12 minutes
Everything hurts

15 minutes
Deals with self not working
power slipping
Ugh.

2 minutes left
whatever is left goes
into the drivetrain

Done.
My effort is dripping onto the floor
Dry heave.
Uugghh.

Monday, January 19, 2009

IMHO- The Financial "Crisis"

Make no mistake, the US is in for some rough financial times. So, how do we get out?

As we have seen, just giving money to the banks won't solve the problem. They're like the MLB owners, they can't control themselves. Sure, the banks y may have more money to "open up the credit market," but that only fixes a small part of the problem. All of the bad debt that was there is still be there. Just giving money to the banks is short sighted and i think just plain lazy. To really fix the problem, we have to get the money flowing back up through the chain: from consumer, to lender, to investors... one big circle.

This means you have to get the bad mortgage performing again. To receive any money from the feds, lenders must agree to modify existing loans on terms that enable homeowners to pay their mortgages. Convert all ARMs to fixed loans and lower ALL rates for everyone. To accomplish this, a portion of the bail out money should be used to modify existing loans. Allow consumers to "cram down" the principal owed to take into account current property values. Use some of the money to compensate lenders for making these changes, not dollar for dollar, maybe 50 cents to the dollar.

To be sure, there will be some consumers who, no matter what you do, won't be able to afford their home. That's o.k. because contrary to what we have been led to believe, not everyone should be a homeowner.

But, many people will be able to keep their homes. Bad debt could become good debt. This then improves a lender's credit rating allowing it to borrow money, which allows it to lend money.

And, homeowners get to stay in their homes.

Consider the alternative. Rising foreclosures, vacant properties etc. Illinois has experienced an 80% increase in 2008. In Cook County alone, there were over 45,000 foreclosure cases filed. Think about that number for a second. 45,000. Since many social services are paid from property taxes, it is in no ones interest to have all of these properties vacant and the loans unpaid.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Cold

If you're in the midwest, you know it's been cold. Damn cold. It was -17 when I left for work today. I could feel my contacts freezing to my eyeballs.

I don't mind this kind of cold so much. Comes with the territory. To some extent it makes me feel alive. I like to think this weather makes us tough. Don't think though that I'm out on my bike in this cold, because I'm not. It's got to get to 30 for me to think about riding outside. I just never seem to get warm enough in cycling clothes to go lower than that. Now, cross racing is different. Riding does not equal racing.

Speaking of racing, looks like there will be some road racing in my future this season. Looking at Hillsboro and some others, but no crits. Looking forward to cross worlds, should be a good race.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

New year, first post

A new year, seemed like time for a new post. Nothing coherent, just a list of things on my mind:

  • Elora got sick right before Christmas and of course Tammi and I caught it just after. I've been in sinus infection hell until really earlier this week. I've been on antibiotics for a week and feel alot better. Seems like when I do get sick, which isn't that often, it knocks me out for a long time.



  • Saw The Wrestler. One of the saddest stories I have ever seen. Mickey Rourke is excellent, but really looks like hell.



  • Best 2008 tech items for me: the SRM and switching to tubulars for cross.



  • Planning for 09: new road bike, a pit bike for cross and a cross bike for Tammi. Looks like I will be making "the leap." Minimal upkeep on the mountain bikes; I converted her Bontrager to SRAM in 08 already.


  • Started back on the bike this week. Trainer rides blow. But, I've been here before and I'll be here again. I do like the "nothing special, just back used to being on the bike, high cadence, low power" workouts. Also, have plenty of new metal to get me through.


  • Over 350,000 people have applied to be on Obama's staff. Compare that with the 90,000 who did the same when Bush first became President. 350,000!!!

  • Looking at photos of Chris' daughter, I went and found some early photos of Elora. It's weird, it's hard to remember her being that small.

More later. Happy 2009!