Saturday, December 17, 2011

Dog days of Winter

Thorns and Roses - -Abbreviated Holiday Version

Homeroom Attendance 
Mother Theresa
Love Train 
2 Saddles 
Sonic Boom 
Jim Cobb – The Rabbit – another regular member of the leadership group for the Thorns N Roses. 
Elise Cobb – Popsicle, The Beast 
+Approximately 3 of our finest cycling friends and guests. 

Approximately 12 cyclists Occupied the Brueggers Bagels parking lot ready to take flight.  One rider did not take on the typical genome structure of a Thorns and Roses participant.  This guest was in fact a dog.  I am not talking about the common expression used for some of our younger members of the Thorns and Roses, this was a bona-fide pooch by the name of Zinfindel ..I think. 

Gog and Mother Theresa were taking the beloved doggy out for a spin in the dog trailer, which was fitted to a Classic (read heavy) bike.  The crew stood around staring at this impressive rig and were eager to see the biscuit biter in action.  

Group 2 included the usual suspects wanting of 4 millimoles of lactic acid or more.  Jim Cobb commanded core leadership of this group with Steve, Dean and Sonic Boom making playful escapes.  The route was intended to be Green Level West, Luther, 751, Hume Olive, Richardson, Olive Chapel, Kelly, Old US 1, Beaver Creek to home.  However given the Holiday activities of some of the members that day, plus the eager nature of some of the riders to aerobicise...this group re-colonized into 2 different objective classes at the 751 bypass.  Group 2A took off in escape formation, led by the strong, young and vibrant Green Pants Steve, his trusty pal Dean, and Sonic Boom.  Group 2B rechartered a new course through the Lapland of Jordan Lake proper to allow for early afternoon holiday merriment.   

All riders had a great day of cycling fun, with the longest route at 46 miles, the shortest at about 20+/- with Group 2B logging something in between.   

Happy Holidays to All! 

Merry Christmas from Zin, one of the Thorns N Roses newest riders.  She traveled 23 miles miles at a comfortable 12 -13 mph average.  She hopes to join more rides with the Roses in the New Year.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Bike Cornucopia

write up provided by Lee Duncan aka Sonic Boom.  In a previous life Lee, as a soldier during WW I discovered Rin Tin Tin - the first Dog of silent movies.  ( Google it you will find this to be true)

From wikpedia
The first of the line (c. September 10, 1918 – August 10, 1932) was one of a litter of shell-shocked pups found by American serviceman Lee Duncan in a bombed-out dog kennel in Lorraine, France, less than two months before the end of World War I. When Duncan found him on September 15, he was still blind and nursing.[1]
The two pups from the litter that Duncan kept were named for woollen dolls called Rintintin and Nénette that French children gave to the American soldiers as good luck charms. Duncan returned to the USA with them at war's end. Rin Tin Tin settled at his home in Los Angeles, California, though Nénette had earlier died.[2] Rin Tin Tin was a dark sable color and had very dark eyes.
Nicknamed Rinty by his owner, the dog learned tricks and could leap great heights. He was filmed making a 11-foot leap at a dog show by Duncan's acquaintance Charles Jones, who had just developed a slow-motion camera. Seeing his dog being filmed, Duncan became convinced Rin Tin Tin could become the next Strongheart. He later wrote, "I was so excited over the motion-picture idea that I found myself thinking of it night and day."[3]

The Thorns N Roses want to give Thanks to Lee Duncan for his continued service in finding and promoting screen plays to this blog and to have also discovered one of Americas best big screen artists know to all as Rin Tin Tin.

Now for Lee's newest screen play
Bike Cornucopia

David Bridenbaugh – Mr. Bridenbaugh
Steve Cope - Captn Carbon
Lee Duncan - Sonic Boom
Jim Cobb – The Rabbit – another regular member of the leadership group for the Thorns N Roses.
Elise Cobb – Popsicle, The Beast

It was a nice Saturday morning for giving thanks; a special holiday honoring the early cycling settlers and a time to enjoy a special harvest feast of visceral lipids.

There were a few less than a cycling dozen ready to hit the proverbial cycling trail.  But first we attacked the challenge of the day, which was, where in the heck are we going?

The Wampanoag cycling tribe huddled together to come to some decision and it was decided that the crew would head out of Preston, then sail the "Velo Mayflower" through Cary West, 751, Hume Olive, Old US 1, Beaver Creek and then Holland Chapel to home.

Upon making this decision and uniformly committed to be free of couch potato persecution, the Brueggers Plymough colony headed off.  The separatists were in good spirits and commenced merriment.  Upon entering the New World of Cary West, it became increasing clear that they had not properly planned/prepared for the early onset of winter.  This was further demonstrated by the high degree of cooperation to keep warm against the assailing winds.  Not even the silver buckled Captn Cope sprinted for county lines during this phase.

At mile marker 17, the cycling settlers moved due East, seeking the unNorthern Passage through Hume Olive.  This is where the wheels came off the ship.  Mr Bridenbaugh fueled from a morning feeding of Frosted Flakes (I wish I were kidding) hit the escape hatch and headed for the Old US 1 finish line.  Others tried to follow and where met by resistance, specifically exponential levels of wind resistance at the committed rate of speed.  Another explorer known as Jim "Martin Frobisher" Cobb led another equally important conquest across the Hume Olive divide.  The cycling friends who joined him were in thanks at the US 1 Stop Sign for surviving the long arduous journey.  

After spending some time among the indigenous people of Apex it was time for the gang to head back for Black Saturday and Sunday religious affairs.  Leading the Turkey Trot home was Jim "Martin Frobisher" Cobb, accompanied by the resilient and determined Popsicle Beast dba Elise Cobb.

On this final journey home to Plymouth Plantation, the Father / Son team of Nick and Travis served up a huge serving of Stuffing and were gracious to let the group come back for Seconds.

Nearly home and everyone sickened from the elements, Captn Cope broke the Mayflower Compact and sprinted for the county line in victory.  All the colonists rejoiced in the playful match of the day.

Overall, the ride served as a Cornucopia of fun and sport, with Team Thorn finishing out the day's journey at 52 miles with a 18.5 MPH pace.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Ride Together, Right Now

David Bridenbaugh – Mr. Bridenbaugh 
Steve Cope - Captn Carbon 
Todd - B3 
Lee Duncan - Sonic Boom 

It was a bright beautiful morning and we had about 14 riders ready to go. 

Everything was going smooth came old flattop, he came grooving up slowly, he had joo-joo eyeball, he's one unholy roller, he once had hair down to his knees,--he's got to be a joker, he just do what he please--- it was Cope. 

Oh great, now we had some riff raff in the house.  Despite the distraction, the group moved forward with a plan to execute the typical flight path-- across the Carpenter Firestation, down Del Web AARP Blvd, 751, Lystra Petrol and Holland Chapel to home.  We also agreed to a Moratorium on hills. 

As we pulled out of the parking lot, Bridenbaugh said hey: "You may say that I'm a dreamer, But I'm not the only one.. I hope the Stems will join us ..And the world will be as one"...  What?? said Todd! 

And with these prophetic words, the group decided to ride together, and were kind and polite.  The steady pace continued through the first stage of the cycling event.  Nothing too crazy and the behavior exhibited experience and maturity--but more so a symptom of eating excessive amounts of Halloween Candy. 

As the group road out towards 751, the hills started to form, and one young rider, Shane was looking a little cold...He had toe-jam football...He had monkey finger ..He uttered "I know you, you know me" 
"One thing I can tell you is you got to be free"..and with that he pushed about 500 watts through his cycling machine and the blood splattered.  "Ouch, that hurt" everyone yelled.. 

Geez ..and who was ready to blast off next...none other than the Father / Son team of Nick and Travis.  As they started to wake from their cycling slumber.. Nick had Walrus Gumboot and Travis had tights down below his knees, and as they road past on their bikes you could feel their disease...Sonic Boom shouted, .."lets stay together, right now"...or until the light. 

After the light, Sharon and Todd were willing to keep Sonic Boom company as they finished the King of The Mountain stage and rolled into Lystra Petrol.  That was hard work, and it was now time to feast on Hostess Trans fats. 

With everyone feeling a little tired from battling the cold temperatures,  one member of the Thorns yelled out "how many miles to go?"   

Cope...suffering from early onset hypothermia..yelled back, "One and one, and one is three" "Got to be good-looking 'cause it's so hard to see".  Todd once again responded with What?? 

OK, let's all get back then.  And with that the group played nice on the return trip back..with the exception of a decisive County Line Sprint where Cope and Bridenbaugh dominated. 

Overall a great great day of riding among friends at a 16 to 17 mph ave for 40 miles. 

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Yowie Cycling Encounter

Those in attendance on Saturday.

Those in attendance on Sunday

Kevin Smit – GOG
Theresa Smit – Mother Theresa
Craig X
Lee Duncan - Sonic Boom
Jae Brainard – “GO GO GO Girl”

On Sunday morning we had 7.5 riders ready to go according to census data.

As we assembled into the parking lot, a few cyclists noticed a large shadowy figure off to the back and snapped a few photos as it scampered into the woods. Was it a Sasquatch (see picture)?

As it turned out, it was GOG entering the tree lined area of Brueggers Bagels to take a natural break. Phew!!

The small group rejoiced because the only thing more rare than seeing Big Foot is a GOG and Mother Theresa sighting. We were delighted and quickly tried to capture the two and bring them into captivity.

After a short team huddle, GOG called out the play -- "we are going to take a complicated escape out of Cary with lots of turns and weirdness." Luckily our new friend Bart understood the directions and demonstrated his competence by calling out streets along the intended path. This dude knew what he was doing.

The crew hit the road, following the directions as instructed until our faithful Roses Leader "GO GO Go Girl" ejected assorted cycling items out of her jacket. The group slowed down and let her collect the belongings which turned out to be mace and I think a taser, brass knuckles and a bear trap. Mother Theresa and GOG yelled "OK were good, release the Kraken"...and with that the 4 man Thorn team was born.

Team Thorn included Craig X, Vick, Bart and Sonic Boom... and we immediately started to chase the invisible rabbit. Up and around we went until we found our way to Green Level West and out to Lewter Shop. We had some awesome pulls and most everyone was rested from the rainy Saturday the day before. Craig X and Vick were all set to do the Halloween Habitat Century, but as mentioned were shut down by the rain. It was noticeable that they were taking their frustration out on Bart and Sonic Boom as they pushed the pedals in Anger. At one point, Sonic Boom fought back trying to serve the 2 Angry men some cycling justice on Holland Chapel, but the do-gooders were too much and could not be playfully dropped. Now that the group was totally gassed out at about 15 miles into the ride, we cruised to Lystra gas station on auto pilot.

At Lystra gardens and resorts we hopped off our bikes for some delicious treats to consider our next move. Originally Craig X and others had to be back in the parking lot by 10:30AM, but some how through cell phone negotiations they were free to about 1PM or longer. With the extended curfew, it was decided that we would do Lystra, Big Woods and Wilsonville to home.

Upon our decision the 4 man group headed towards Lystra riding at a cautionary pace and in good formation. Everyone made it up Lystra in good shape until Bart had to head back for baby duty. We said good bye to our spatially gifted General, and the trio continued forward entering Jack Bennet and up Big Woods. Vick took the lead up Big Woods and pulled the group the entire way -- wow. After that we summoned Craig X to help us because we didn't have enough power for interstellar travel. Craig X took a commanding position and pulled the scrappy Thorns up and towards the Wilsonville gas station where we took one final rest break. Sensing weakness in critical thinking skills from our belabored efforts, Sonic Boom tried to trade snacks with Craig X, but Craig was too smart and knew a bad trade when he saw one.

Now limping, Team Thorn willed themselves across Fearrington pass and back one last time over Holland Chapel and to home.

The short recovery ride turned into a 52 mile 18 to 19 average speed event with everyone happy to see our cycling friends and ready for our next adventure.

The ROSES enjoyed thier 33.4 mile ride out to the lake and back.  They traveled at an average speed of 14.6 mph.  The sun and calm air made for a very enjoyable ride.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Cold Play - Front Row Seats

Saturday Oct 22 nd
Yet Another great story of the adventures of the Thorns as told by Lee Duncan (Sonic Boom).

Yup, another Cold one. The Mercury logged about 42 degrees during the first few strokes of the pedal. This was a day for full frontal -- that is, keeping minimal frontal area exposed to the wind. Certainly a day that could have inspired the makers of Wind Stopper fabric.

Despite this, about 20+/- aerobic soldiers occupied the parking lot at Thorns and Roses cycling emporium. To keep cognitive frustration at bay, the decision was to maintain the familiar with the typical Cary escape: Lystra, Big Woods and Wilsonville to home. This route has something for everyone, not to mention about 2,000+ feet of total climbing.

The riders organized to their intended heart rate zone for the day and rolled out of the parking lot. Another great parade ensued out of Cary with the common discussion topic being the most substantial appendage affected by the cool weather conditions. This continued on for the first 7 miles. Right out of the Hand Book, as the light turned green at the gas station of Carpenter Firestation Hollow, the riders took flight.

More rapid than eagles the Green Flash's coursers they came, and he whistled, and shouted, and ridiculed them by name; "Now, Jim Cobb ! now, Rob Robertson ! now, Todd McBride and Love Train!

On, Don! on Dean! on, Bridenbaugh don't complain! To the top of the hill! out towards the Mall!

---Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"---

So the group pushed it hard, until their morning pastries and abdominal stiches arrested their progress. From there on out, the soldiers rode together well until the contagion known as cellular micro trauma infected about 90% of the riders at the Lystra gas station. Their next of kin then continued on to finish the ride as a memorial.

A great ride was had by all, with the surviving Thorns completing 57 miles at a 19+/- ave speed for the day.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Thorns and Roses Tribute Ride

Saturday Oct 15th
It was a beautiful morning with the sun peaking up over the horizon and the weather extraordinarily cooperative--people simply had to show up. With the trap bated and set, the cyclists started to arrive at the historically unconfirmed birthplace of cycling -- the Thorns and Roses clubhouse. One by one they arrived, small ones and tall ones, young and those named Paul ones--about 20 +/- riders in all. A great bonus was the arrival of a few Thorns and Roses "framers": Steve Cope and David Bridenbaugh + the Raven Rock Ramble Founder and Organizer.

The Green Flash worked to develop a community organizer project and stationed The Jets on one side of the parking lot and The Sharks on the other -- translation A and B group. The concept design of the ride would be a traditional exit through Cary, out through the previously known Del Web development, 751, Stage Coach, numerous Farrington named roads, Lystra, Jack Bennett, Big Woods, Wilsonville Gas and home. After proper disclosure and a review of the game rules, the pistol fired.

The cycling flash mob hit the streets, talking and getting CV updates on recent activities. The merriment continued through the largely ceremonial first lap of the Champs-Elysees where no one challenges and everyone raises their water bottles in celebration of the day. This mood and comradery continued until the curtain fell with the Green Light entrance of Carpenter Firestation; and with that the gate flew open and the jockeys spurred their horses into action.

The rest was a blur, however it was noted that all riders were rotating well, riding safely, and at the same time (Thorn Account) trying to make their friends suffer in the worst way.

A great time was had by all, with the final group finishing at 57 miles moving at a 20 mph +/- average speed.

Sunday, October 02, 2011


Brrrrr. It was a cold start to the ride AGAIN, what was up with this weather? Perhaps Fall got a little ahead of itself.

Considering the beautiful weather on Saturday, I was curious who would show up for the Sunday recovery mixer. It turned out to be Mr reliable, Vic and a new recruit Shane. Both were filled with optimism and ready to ride. It was decided that an out and back would be the course of the day and with that the 3 riders pulled out of the parking lot.

As we started on the road out of Preston, it was learned that Vic had completed a 100 mile Century ride the day before and was ready to add to his war chest with the Sunday ride. I told Vic he was my hero and that he encapsulated what I wanted to be when I grow up.

And Shane, our new recruit ---- revealed that he was 15 or 16 years of age. When he made this confession, I thought about what I was doing at age 15/16 and I believe it involved watching Beavis and Butthead. I was not focused and committed to anything to the degree that Shane was, and I could see that this was a young man with a bright future in whatever he decided to pursue.

The 3 riders made their way through Carpenter Firestation huddled together to fight off the bursts of chilly wind. It seemed more like early November than early October, and we all felt like dedicated cyclists for riding on such a frigid morning.

The Cyclists turned left at the CVS, bypassing Cary park to try and keep the hills at bay. However, with a quick burst of speed the riders shot up the small undulation of Green Level Church, over toward Morrisville Parkway and out to the Berry Patch. Each person took meaty rotating turns at the front, keeping the speed solid and reflexes sharp. Shane showed great cycling courage with several large pulls and Vic demonstrated that he had bottomless endurance. At the midpoint, the dynamic few-o put the ride on cruise control and chatted about cycling, weather, current events with a few select moments of banter seasoned in.

A great ride was had by all at 32 miles with an 18.5 mph pace.