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Staying Alive
2007-05-10, 4:08 p.m.

Day 991 Staying Alive

“It’s my reward for putting up with your drunk ass” wasn’t uttered. At least to Cindy. The new bike deal went over like a lead balloon (Led Zeppelin?), but like one of my former bosses used to say: “Do what you need to do and apologize later”. He was talking about completing a project on time, not justifying costs of rewards, but I like the sentiment.

The company stock deal? Totally true, and really, it was like spending free money. My money no less, since it was in my account. I did save some, so we can get some stuff at the pond place. New fish, new plants, maybe an algae nuking system.

Got a package in the mail from the outfit that will be handling our retirement plan with the new company. It highlighted some of the changes in our retirement plan. Not all of them are bad, and it puts more of the management responsibility on the owner (us) of the funds. Kinda cool. So I was going over some of the basics of the plan with Zach. Seeing as he’s soon to be entering the grown up world and needs to start learning about 401k’s and cash balance plus type plans.

Well, Cindy got upset, thinking I was discussing our (my?) retirement fund issues and plans with Zach and not her. Both Z and I explained to her repeatedly (3 times!!!) that we were just going over this stuff in general terms, giving Z some things to think about when it’s time to start considering job offers and benefits packages. It seemed to finally penetrate the haze and she got off that subject a little bit.

Then she got into the whole, “but you & I still need to discuss what to do with your new retirement, 401k, etc”. My reply to her was, “we will talk about it, as soon as I learn more myself. Besides, you’re in no condition to talk about it right now”. She of course insisted that she was fine, several times. I didn’t argue, just made my point and let it drop. Besides, there was dinner to cook.

Later on, in an ironic (or coincidental?) happenstance, as Cindy was transporting her dinner plate out to the patio to sit down and eat with us, she had a little difficulty navigating the 2 steps between house & patio. I thought she was going to catch herself after the first step, buuuuuuutttt she didn’t. She unknowingly almost dumped her plate as she reeled backwards and finally landed on her butt on the bottom step. Incredibly, she didn’t spill a thing. It did, however, put an end to the discussion about her being in any sort of condition to talk about my retirement funds. (She didn’t have a leg to stand on. Heeee)

I did play with my bike a little last night. How could I not? I took the speedometer off the old Duffy and mounted it on the Raleigh. Once I got the calibration set, I took her for a little test spin around our block. Think I may have picked up around 3 mph in average speed on flat roads. Used to be I could maintain 17 – 18 mph around our block without grunting & groaning. On the Raleigh, I made the last turn at just over 21mph. Wasn’t cranking all that hard, and I still had a gear or two left. Until I get out and do a real trip I won’t know for sure, but I think that 3mph is a safe estimate. Since I’m now “so heavily invested in biking” and “need to use that bike to make it worth it” (not my words you may have guessed), I’m going out Sunday morning, early, maybe do either the Roberts Wesleyan loop (16 miles) or the Churchville loop (23 miles). Geek that I am, I have time records for how long each of those loops from last year. Besides knowing what my average speeds were, I know how far and how long each of those rides was. Pays to be anal sometimes.

As is true with many new things, there are now accessories to get. I moved by under the saddle to the new bike. Water bottle? Nah. Need new ones. New bike has brazed on mounts for 2 holders. Need some rat traps for the pedals. Those are the funky little cages for your feet so you can pull up as well as push down. Also need to get a lock & cable set, spare tube, tire removal tools and an air pump. Then I’ll feel prepared for the Tour.

Someone remind me later – I need to ask about the parking situation at the Tour’s start/end point. Mendon Ponds is a nice, pretty big park (especially by county standards), but parking could be at a premium. Or impossible. I need to figure out if I can go by myself and park the van or if I should plan on being dropped off to conserve space/avoid a ticket. Mui importante. Cindy will be SO willing to be up at 5am on a Sunday to take me over. Shit – she doesn’t even think I’ll make the 65 mile route. I’m seriously considering doing the 100 mile just for spite. Definitely got me some motivation. Just need enough food & water. And a day off work the next day.

Got assigned a new project to manage here at the zoo. Did up the schedule yesterday. Project was 3 hours old and I was already 3 days late. How in hell does this happen? Odds are that I’ll be a little more brief (briefer, brieferer?) over the next week or two until I get this project under some semblance of control.

In the mean time, I have to go pedal my ass around so I can get as much value as I can out of this bike.

Now I go spend the afternoon on the phone talking to parts vendors. Oh boy.

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old habits - new tricks