Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Good Trouble

Three flats in five days. Three. This comes after a period of flatlessness that extends so far back that I had forgotten that such trouble was possible. Then, like a bad dream that won't stop, flat flat flat. One of them was yesterday, at the library. The library was the scene of many flats, once upon a time, until I learned about proper inflation and not treating road bike tires like mountain bike tires.

But, for whatever reason, the Curse has returned and yesterday I found myself doing yet another roadside repair. Afterward I always pedal home and patch the bad tube with those Skabs glueless patches that I like. I patch the old tube and put it back on the bike, after removing the spare tube and putting it back in the saddle bag. While having an almost 100% success rate with the Skabs, I figure using a patched tube as a spare is asking for trouble. Me, I get trouble enough without asking.

Or maybe not. In fact, trouble ain't that common with me these days. I would like to think it is a result of my maturity finally catching up with my years, but I know better. Things are just going smoothly because how much trouble can ya get into when all you do is read books and ride your bicycle around town, awkwardly sober and suffering zero interaction with the citizenry?   I famously do not play well with others but these days TJC the TPC roams the streets alone, bereft of companionship and un-pirated. I am without a ship or a mission and as I mentioned recently, enough is enough.

My son Beau, he of the Los Angeles Beauregards, finding himself equally without trouble (or mission) but, unlike his elderly père, seeking both, has made his way home from the West, returning to his natal state of Florida where he now resides, (over in St. Petersburg) stomping the bushes and stirring things up. There seems to be work there, our kind of work, big buildings that need doors and trim, hardware and careful fitting; we have the tools and we have the talent and maybe...

Well, we shall see.

Meanwhile, after getting hundreds of requests (okay, three) I have started thinking about serializing the novel I never wrote. I have no idea if it is even readable. I think I sent some pages of it over to my friend CryJack the Playwright but that was back in one of my periods of dark unrest and for all I know she is even now puzzling over the literary merits of my liquor store shopping lists and multiple drafts of suicide notes.

Whatever the case, I guess I will display my dirty laundry and verbal meanderings for all the world to see. Or at least the handful of my remaining readers.

So stay tuned. After three flats in five days anything is possible. Maybe even something good, some good trouble.


Whispering Pines Trailer Park (for now) and Publishing House


  1. Now that is something to look forward to, TJ missives in serial form. (Rubbing hands together.) Must have popcorn on hand.....

    Sorry about the flats, my friend. I've been on a bad streak with them my ownself but not on my really long rides. I have no idea why it works out like that.

    Keep properly inflated and hydrated!

    B in V

  2. Thanks, Brian. I hope you guys like it and if so, spread it around.

    It all starts Friday and runs Monday Wednesday and Friday...until I run out of chapters or inspiration.

  3. Keep your eyes out for Sarah Palin and goatheads! Hope the flat frenzy is finished for you soon. Skabs huh, I will have to check them out I just use generic no name ones.

    +1 on the hand rubbing and gleeful exhortations regarding serialization of missives.


    1. I hate to admit it but I get them at Walmart. The Skabs. Goat heads I don't know about.

  4. I am fortunate to only run into the Goat Head menace on my rare visits to Eastern Washington you friends in the Southwest could tell you more about them.

    Found this great quote at Adventure cycling and thought of you

    "My two favorite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything. The perfect day: Riding a bike to the library."
    --Peter Golkin

  5. GoatHeads.
    Those little fuckers.
    Not many things I hate in this world.....ticks because I don't see any role they play in the advancement of nature. At least goatheads are there to move the seeds out into the worlds. We don't even get them too bad here in Colorado compared to my friends in New Mexico. Did you know there is even a goathead season down there.

    After my little flats adventures in Santa Fe I am trying out Slime far so good. I am going to put those on the LHT before my tour in July.

    Yup, looking forward to the writings!

  6. Gypsy and Cass and company have gone tubeless as the answer to this thorny problem (sorry, sometimes I can't stop myself) but even so, those things look gnarly as hell! Demonic, even...I wonder what would happen if you ground them up and smoked them? Jim Bangs, could you look into that while on your tour? We look forward to hearing the results. You might want to take along a copy of The Teachings of Don Juan as back up...


  7. Don't want to jinx my self, but I've never seen a goathead (at least, not one that wasn't attached to the neck of a goat). I can't speak for tubeless on a road bike, but on my mtb they RULE! Haven't had a flat in over 6 years now I think (NO JINX, PLEASE!). Of course I run slime in the tires, and can just pull the thorns out and they give a little pfssttt and that's it...hole sealed. Jim, I also hate ticks...and mosquitoes. REALLY hate mosquitoes (but they LOVE LOVE LOVE me sadly...they'll bite thru a shirt to taste my sweet blood). And also to no to jinx myself, but my last flat was a while ago, and it was a doozy..cut a BRAND STINKIN' NEW Michelin Pro Race 3 clear across the had maybe 150 miles on it...had to toss it. HATE throwing away expensive tires not even close to worn out).

    I'll be awaiting the reading of your dirty laundry (and verbal meanderings), and also keeping my fingers crossed that both you and your son both get work in those tall buildings that need your skills. Until then keep the rubber-side down and keep logging the miles!

  8. Thanks, Matt. It's coming. The signs are everywhere, particularly in the form of cranes. Not the feathered kind, the big steel ones you see towering over city skylines. When I hit St. Pete twelve years ago, it looked like they were growing those things there...then, for the last several years, nothing. But now they're back. It was just a matter of time. The construction industry was always cyclical...but this Not So Great recession has been the longest and awfulest in my memory.

    But we're still here and really, this recent experience in all its awfulness has been very educational and I will never look at money and the spending of money the same.