Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Great Muffin Fraud

It's time for a little honesty. Delicious as they may be, muffins are not breakfast food. Muffins are cake in disguise. I dont know who decided to rebrand cake so that they could eat it for breakfast without ridicule, but they have done a fine job of pulling the wool over everyone's eyes.

Look around, any respectable breakfast establishment has muffins on the menu. My money is that you've probably even bought one for breakfast in the last month. That's right, you had cake for breakfast and didn't even know it. I'm not judging; the caramel toffee muffin that I had for breakfast this morning was quite delightful.

That we have allowed ourselves to be deceived like this on such a large scale is frightening. If nobody is willing to recognize the truth about muffins, it begs the deeper question of whether we have the ability to distinguish right from wrong. It's time to call a cake a cake.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Don't go Down on Slippery Manholes

Competitive cyclists are a funny bunch. It is a rare moment when they are not talking about bikes, but that's half their charm. I have to admit that I appreciate the change of pace, though it is beyond me how they never run out of bike-related discussion topics - bike parts, bike races, bike shows, other people's bikes... 
I went out for dinner on Friday with Erik and two friends with whom he'd cycled earlier in the evening. The conversation spanned from race tactics to a seriously nerdy debate about the stiffness of the Cervelo R3 compared with the Scott CR1. From the perspective of a girl who didn't realize that her front shock was locked out on a multi-hour technical mountain bike descent, its kind of hard to relate. But, it doesn't make the evening any less entertaining. I learned a bit about bike parts. I also learned a good joke to use if I ever enter a crit race (see the subject heading of this posting). It's nice to know that a bunch of guys standing around each other in spandex can still have a sense of humour about it. 

Monday, February 18, 2008

Let it Ride

Letting it Ride in the Vegas tradition on Thursday night certainly had its rewards. It also satiated my appetite for late nights and partying, perhaps for the rest of the year (ok, the rest of the week, who am I kidding?). So, I used the rest of my spare time in Vegas to Let it Ride my way. On Saturday, Erik, Chris, Frank and I rode out to Red Rock Canyon. The weather, scenery, road conditions and company were all spectacular. 
I found Frank's attitude toward cycling to be quite consistent with my own and, when he suggested we find a place to grab a beer on the way back, I was quick to second the motion. We found a little backwater spot (maybe backwater isn't the right term since, afterall, we are in the desert) called Bonnie Springs. It's about a mile off the barely-used road that connects Blue Diamond with Red Rock Canyon. Given its remote location, we were surprised to find it bustling with activity - a petting zoo, a pub, a pond, a train, pony rides, a mechanical camel - the place had just about everything. 
The pub was decorated with strings of defaced dollar bills on the ceiling, broken bottles doubling as lightbulb covers, a moose antler shaped wine rack and a menu that came on the back of a tequila bottle. Note the selection. 
I don't think I'm going to take any tips on decorating from the experience, but it made for a perfect wind down to the day (except that we still had, like, 30km to ride back to the hotel). 
I'm sure the elevator at the Four Seasons has seen a lot of stuff, but this was probably a first for it. 
Sunday it was down to Erik, Chris and me. We headed in the opposite direction to the Hoover Dam, where we walked across to Arizona and back and then rushed back to the hotel - not even stopping for the $0.99 shrimp cocktail between Lake Mead and the Dam. But I'm not complaining.  There is some spectacular cycling to be had near Las Vegas. 

Friday, February 15, 2008

What I Did While You Were Sleeping

I've heard that what happens in Vegas is supposed to stay in Vegas and, after last night, I can understand why. But some things are too good not to share. Like last night..or, rather, this morning. Highlights (that I can share) include:

10:32 pm: girls night in a stretch hummer - what better symbol of overindulgence than a stretch hummer
>>>fast forward a few hours>>>
4:03 am: jill and I made our date with travis and chris at the roulette table. 
4:12 am: after a sad losing streak, we pooled together our last dollar bills to meet the $25 minimum bet...which we turned into $900. lucky red 19! time to go buy some champagne.
6:30 am: we walked out to the 'welcome to las vegas sign' at sunrise in our four seasons robes.
and it all happened before you woke up this morning.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Driving Glasses

These are my driving glasses. Or, as Erik likes to say, these are my "Not while you're driving with me" glasses.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Tina! Where are you?

Housework is one of the joys of living. That is, in a perfect world. One in which you have the time to enjoy your clean house after you have taken the time to clean it. If you are squeezed for time, housework is a bitch. 
For years I resisted the temptation to hire a cleaner. Why would I pay someone to live my life? If I don't have time for my life, maybe I'm working too much. I can tell you that sometimes I'd rather be cleaning my toilet than, um, some of the other things I spend my time doing. But, spending the few precious moments that I have at home cleaning is stressful. So is trying to relax in a dirty house. 
Finally, after a prolonged period of domestic chaos, I caved. Unfortunately, it has proved much more difficult than I anticipated to find someone to clean our barely-lived-in house. Our first cleaning lady did a great job, but never came back or answered calls afterward. Was our house really that messy? Was her schedule just too busy to take on an infrequent gig at a small house? ...did she come across something that she didn't like? 
The new lady, Tina, did a great (albeit expensive) job about six weeks ago. She was supposed to come back last Monday, but she never showed up. She hasn't returned my call either. 
Tina, where are you? 
Are you okay? 
Don't you like us? 
Please come back. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

100 degrees of separation

Walking out of Houston International Airport to catch a cab amidst a jacketless crowd, it occured to me that one week ago I was standing outside in Calgary, waiting for a cab, in temperatures 100 degrees (farenheit) colder. What a difference a week makes. Or time in general, for that matter. We have been so slammed at work for so long that my level of mental engagement in what I am doing at any given moment has become incredibly intense. The change from one moment to the next can feel so radical that it is hard to reconcile my perception the passage of time with reality. One minute I can be fixating on how precisely one line in a legal agreement should be worded to avert armageddon. The next minute I might be vividly experiencing the memory of drinking a beer with five of the world's best people at my side on Playa Bonita after four days of mountain biking through the Costa Rican jungle.
Excuse me now, while I travel back in time.