Saturday, December 4, 2010

Heywood Inspired Holiday Message

Coffee does indeed spark the para-familiar, brother/sister buggery.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Where have you been.

Well hello everybody and Merry Freaking Christmas! After two years of having Heywood's computer at the "geek squad," (which made it impossible to post anything) they finally called today to say the computer is fixed. Talk about a slow turnaround time. Sheesh!

Lets catch up on the goings on the west coast. Heywood has gone through three mountain bikes in this time but is currently riding a Yeti ASR-7 which is the cats meow. There shall be a review to follow another day. His dream rode bike has arrived, but it turns out to be kinda vanilla. And, well.... sounds like we are up to the present now. Moving right along.

Mrs. Heywood is very much like Moveitfred, she enjoys a nice cup 0f joe to get her jacked up in the wee hours of the morning. And to try to keep nagging and bitching to a minimum, Heywood purchased her a KitchenAid Proline burr coffee grinder which arrived yesterday. Trying hard not to bore the followers of this blog, (if they do still exist), a burr grinder offers a more consistent grind to the beans without heating them up which affects the flavor. Mrs. Heywood, the Chef, and Heywood Jablome himself sat down to sample some cafe from this new grinder. The verdict...AMAZING.

After loading the hopper with the Mrs. favorite roast, the grinder was put to work. The desired coarse grind for the french press was achieved to perfection. Coffee beans where ground uniform as expected from a burr grinder of good reputation. The machine was quiet and surprisingly quick. Due to some combination of the slow speed motor and the glass catch basin, there was no static cling. There is no timer, but who really needs one anyway for a process that only takes ten seconds. After brewing the coffee in a french press, no sludge was found at the bottom of the glasses, which can be caused by a nonuniform grind. This is common place with the crappy blade grinder that Papa Jablome passed along to this casa. Truly, this is an incredible machine. Advice to all who brew coffee at home, buy a KitchenAid grinder and be Merry. Bad news, Mrs. Jablome was chipping her teeth while nagging about everything once she consumed her cup.

One last thing, here is the most recent photo of Al and Fred I could find. Sweet Dreams.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Thought for 2009

Happy Kisses, Moveitfred.

Monday, December 8, 2008


Hi Friends! Fred and Heywood shared their holiday card with me, and I wanted to share it with all of you:

"Dear Al: a Joyous Noel to you. Felice Navidad! Heywood and I are doing well on our man-retreat. Today we made pemmican. Together. Tonight is the big drum ceremony. Tomorrow we're all doing a sweat. "Man-fun!" as we say. Just wanted you to know we're thinking about you.


Sunday, December 7, 2008

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Hello all. Long time no post. Here's the update. Today, I am 2 months out of surgery. I have very little pain except when I sit for more than about 5-10 minutes. When I do that I get a quick wake up call to stand and move.

I am walking 4-5 miles a day at a good pace. I do this 6 days a week. I am lifting lightly with a good deal of restriction. I am swimming with some regularity. I do a good deal of ab work, and overall I am getting stronger. But my flexibility sucks!!!!!!!!! I am not allowed to do anything where I bend my upper body over my lower body (bending at the waist activities are a no no). So stretching is tuff. I stand and put my legs up on things. I lay on my back and pull those legs in. I twist and turn on the floor. But I feel like I've got some painful, hard substance in my back when I stretch. I've made some progress, but flexibility is SLOW to improve. I have not really ridden the bike at all, either. I can't sit for long so the spin bike is hard. (I've done some 10-15 minute sessions but then I get real uncomfy.) Riding on the road is out until spring. I also have not run at all. I can start that in a limited fashion after the new year. BUT I AM NERVOUS.

My surgeon is a friend of mine. He and I were BSing about my spine last night. He explains the area as " a sick disk." The disk herneated as badly as it did because of this "sickness." It will always be a point of weakness, even though surgery remedied the immediate problem. I can build my core to protect it (as much as possible). But it will always be prone to injury, an area of reduced flexibility, a source of soreness etc. The nature of the "sick disk" is to spray that material out of proper position in the cavity whenever pressure is applied. As it stands now, I've got way less disk material than before. If a herneation happens again, I'm looking at spinal fusion. Spinal fusion is a motherfucker.

The plan...I've kept myself in the best shape I can. I have not allowed myself to gain any weight. (Still at 172, which is a good weight for me.) I am feeling fit. But I'm sure my CV fitness has diminished. I plan to start running lightly after new year. I'll begin by mixing a mile in here and there with my walks. I've got some well groomed trails near the house. The ground is softer than the pavement. That's where I'll work on building up a run base through the winter. Come spring, I'll take to the road and get back on the bike. This will get the CV Fit back up. I do not plan to go anywhere near my old running mileage. (I used to log 40 miles running each week.) I do not intend to do more than 20-25 miles per week running, once I'm back at it full bore. My plan is to increase the swim miles, increase the bike miles, mix in the fast paced walking, and stay with lifting. I also do not plan to do anymore long runs (nothing beyond 8-10 miles max). And I will not race anymore long run races. (No run races beyond about a 10k.) I'll also focus on the sprint tri category. I'd love to get back to Olympic Tris...we'll see.

For 09, I'll be VERY happy if I can get myself ready for a Sprint Tri. My goal (right now) is to get my ass in that ICE COLD L.I. Sound for the Ironclad Tri in May.

That's the goal....we shall see.

Oh... and enjoy this pic of my hairy, scarred back. It is truly amazing how much work they can do, now, through a very small incision. My buddy had a similar surgery 5 years ago. His scar is 5 times as long as mine.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Things to do

Moveitfred needs to rake leaves and kill a rooster.

Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Why me?

These last two months have been depressing for the competitor in me. After experiencing cross last year for the first time, I was eager to ring in this season with a new bike, new found fitness, and new excitement for racing. I was going to see Gloucester for the first time, with my pals Moveitfred and Meg racing next to me. Like always, things just don’t work out as Heywood the Great planned.

The bike was to be a Cannondale Cyclocross 2. SRAM Force and all. This is one of the brands that Auburn Bike Works carries and the only place I will buy a bike (I work there part time). Yeah. Cannondale missed the boat and did not produce enough bikes to fill the orders. But they will have some ready for purchase mid December. Nice timing!

Ok, the other brand Auburn Bike Works carries, Giant. I can ride a Giant. It is still a CX bike and I need one badly. Oh, they also missed the boat this year. According to Giant, they sold the same number of CX bikes in ALL of last year in only two weeks this year. So, here they are loosing out to there competitors and fucking the little guy like me. How am I supposed to get my ass dragged around the course if I don’t have a bike to ride? What the hell is up with these two companies?

I been forced to watch and cheer at races this year with a tear falling down the cheek. Reading about the races on VeloNews is not helping either. There is always next year, right?

Maybe I should reconstruct the white trash ghetto cross bike of last year?

Monday, October 13, 2008


Al gettin' all bunched because Freddo didn't provide any content to go along with the pic at Gloucester.


Freakin' uncrosslike warm, dusty, dry John Wayne Kill 'Dem Injuns conditions at the venue, Moveitfred no racey cause his po wittle elbow sore, the usual fast-cats rippin' up the course, Sachsies always have the best bikes, JD killer course setup and remembered the effin' cowbells on day 2 (thanks a BUNCH JD!), Andrew at CX mag coming through with a stylin' T for our hero, Mo B-Roy looking dapper in the new kit, freakin' Orange Wookie Gewilli commanding a venue prescence, Trackrich manhandling a chain on day 1 and scoring spot 10 on day 2, Sisson twittering allllll day, Artist Formerly Known As Felt sporting the Giro-esque black kit on a PINK zank, Ctodd somewhere, Solo leaving early to get back to the foundry, awesome brauts, oh that runup on day 2, Richie and Deb and the Twizzlers, Beer Garden!, then there's Meg, and a lovely two days in the sun with the fam.

Moveitfred scored some comp housing out in Lexington with the smaaaties compliments of the neighbors who have a 3 acre plot and farmhouse. Beautiful little intellects in that area. Moveitfred hung out at the local Peet's in the a.m. and wanted to kill people on day 2. How many of you would like to go through life wearing your base-grey Haaavad T and debating theories of 18th Century Chinese language/character development in the rural disaspora? At 7a.m. on a Sunday?

Shit, ain't the Sox in the playoffs?

Hey, great weekend Gloucester. See yas next time.


Gloucester effin' rocks.

Friday, September 26, 2008


Al has returned from the world of the anesthetized better, stronger, faster.

On Tuesday, 9/23 I went in for spinal surgery. I had a very big piece of the L3 disc removed. This herneation has been the source of my problems, and it had reached a point where surgery was necessary. I was numb on my left side from my abdomen to my ankle. I would get strange, tingling / electric shocks down the side. My muscles were weakening, and I was having trouble controlling my leg function on the left side.

I had a laminectomy / diskectomy (microdiskectomy) done to remove the herneated disc material. The pic above shows the basic procedure, although the surgeon I used has a less invasive procedure so my incision was smaller than above.

Today is Friday, and I am up and walking about and doing well. I think this is because I went into the surgery in very good shape. Although I haven't been able to run since May, I've been biking and swimming and walking and doing some "modified" weight training.

The surgery was a long one (about 3 hours). I don't remember much from Tuesday. I do remember being up all night Tuesday with discomfort and NOISE. The discomfort is a common thing with spinal surgery. It is hard to sit or lay down. Walking about seems to be the easiest thing for me. So I just shuffled around most of the night/next day at the hospital. And, with all that time on my hands in the hospital, I came up with a few ideas to improve the hospital experience:

1) Hospitals are fucking LOUD. I guess if you're a rich fat cat you can afford a private room. Dude's like us get four to a rooms. Every five minutes (NO EXAGGERATION) a nurse or doctor or orderly was coming in to do something ALL NIGHT LONG. So my first improvement is a small hard plastic divider system I've devised. It keeps things quiet, keeps you separate...nice.

2) Signage is very important in the hospital, I noticed. I was in the "neurology" recovery area. Mostly, there were stroke victims and other neurological patients who were "recovering." I say "recovering" because they appeared to me to be going the other direction. Not pretty. Anyway, every patient had multiple signs over his/her bed:
Strict Monitor I/O s
Monitor / Measure Urines
and my personal favorite
Nothing by Mouth

I guess this all makes sense. You've got changing shifts, different nurses, different doctors, troupes of residents coming through. Clear signs make safe patients. So I got on board and made my own sign to post above my bed:


With all those pumps and hoses and gung ho RNs I figured I couldn't be too careful.

So now I'm just recovering. I don't have much pain, just the previously mentioned discomfort. My doc tells me I'll be lightly biking in a few weeks. I start weight PT about that time too. For now, I'm pacing and healing. All is well.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Rumors of Al's Demise

have been greatly exaggerated, fyi.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Speaking of Train Wrecks

Our hero, Al, is currently dreaming up some sort of fucking Frankenbike that's going to be sporting a--better sit down for this one--Rohloff 14-speeder hub.

Al claims he's going to be The Master of Disaster with this new setup. He's going to take on the urban jungles of the north shore of Long Island, blast open a new aesthetic for travel, and kick the shit out of the lycramodel set now clogging the roadways.

Let us, too, send our heartfelt wishes for success and healing to the meritorious Al. The knife awaits him. The docs are going in. He'll be sporting a new chassis in a couple of days.

Godspeed Al.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


A few things to report...

First, the back injury is really progressing. The pain is mostly gone. I've still got some ache and some tingling down the leg at times, but none of the real agony I had after the injury. And much of my flexibility and strength has returned. I'm walking, swimming, biking, stretching, and doing light weight training to rehab and strengthen the body.

Second, I've broken 100 on the new bike. I'm happy to report that in 2 weeks I've logged 125 miles on the Sampson. These are not big miles, but I'm pretty happy with my progress. My standard ride is a 15 miler now, and I am moving along pretty well through a mix of hills and flats. Next week, I'm going to bump up to 20 mile rides and see how I feel.

Third, Monday I go for my (hopefully) last round of epidur-AL steroids. I really hope it is my last!!! I can't begin to tell you how rough these are on the system. Maybe it is just me but I have been majorly side-effected (as I've mentione before):

My resting heart rate (usually at 48 bpm) is now about 74. I get these heart racing moments where, inexplicably, I feel like I've just run up a flight of stairs. I have trouble falling asleep, and I wake up, frequently, with my heart pounding away. I get hot flashes (to accompany the heart racing) where I'm suddenly bathed in sweat. And I am one moody motherfucker! Right now (at the end of a cycle of 'roids) I'm so edgy and irritable. And, frequently, I'm in these black moods. (I think of them as my "grrrrrr, FUCK OFF!" moods.) I'm willing to bet that after Monday (next set of injections) the emotional roller coaster will level for a while, and I'll feel great again...for a while. SUCKS!'s better than back surgery and better than the pain and debilitation I was going through.

I'm a doper. What can I do?

And speaking of dopers, how 'bout that TDF? What fun!

Here's an interesting essay that suggests that maybe the TDF should say au revoir for a while.

All for now...

Thursday, July 3, 2008


In which AL says, "Roids are rough."

I've got more chemicals flowing through me than the Festina team in '98. I've gone through 2 rounds or oral steroids and 2 epidural roid injections in the spine. The bad news is I am seriously side effected: irritable as hell, insomniac-AL, hot flashing all the time, anxious and jumpy. The good news is my back is doing much better. My symptoms now are intermittent light ache that travels down the leg, some weakness on the left side, and periodic numbness and tingling. This is a MAJOR IMPROVEMENT. 3 weeks ago I was essentially crippled on the left side and in agony. I've even started to get out and about a bit. I walked for a 1/2 hour yesterday. I swam a bit the other day (floundering mostly). And......


Like a kid on Christmas morning, I unpacked my new Sampson Road Racing Bike this morning.

Now I must thank Freddy for his help with customizing the build kit for me and with the wheel build specs. He advised me well, and I absolutely love the build:

The bike is a Ti frame with a Campy Centaur group (except Chorus brake/shifters). The wheels: Mavic Open Pros, Centaur hubs, 14-15 DB spokes.

It took me about an hour to put it together. I had a wee bit of trouble with a USE Alien seatpost. These big clumsy fingers weren't working well with the rail clamps. Anyway, got 'er done:

I got out for a nice easy 10 mile ride. WHAT A DREAM!!! I've just never ridden anything like it. Responsive, smooth, absolutely plush, but still rigid and really light. Just unreal road feel and control and response. I'm ecstatic. And, even more importantly, my body responded well. I had only some back fatigue afterward but no pain or numbness or return of symptoms.(I left the steerer long and stacked the stem up a bit. I am going to take it as easy as I can on the back for a while. I can always cut and remove the spacers.) I'm very psyched. a home shirt...all the way around.

The game plan from here: in two weeks I will get another shot in the spine. If the symptoms continue to diminish or remain as they are, no surgery. If they return/get worse, we'll re-evaluate. The good thing is I can start back to modified activity and muscle rehab.

Hey...anyone ever do any pool running? Not deep water running. I'm talking about the shallow water stuff. Any info appreciated.


Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Word Fun

From the Washington Post:

The American Family Association obviously didn't foresee the problems that might arise with its strict policy to always replace the word "gay" with "homosexual" on the Web site of its Christian news outlet, OneNewsNow. The group's automated system for changing the forbidden word wound up publishing a story about a world-class sprinter named "Tyson Homosexual" who qualified this week for the Beijing Olympics.

The problem: Tyson's real last name is Gay. Therefore, OneNewsNow's reliable software changed the Associated Press story about Tyson Gay's amazing Olympic qualifying trial to read this way:

Tyson Homosexual was a blur in blue, sprinting 100 meters faster than anyone ever has.
His time of 9.68 seconds at the U.S. Olympic trials Sunday doesn't count as a world record, because it was run with the help of a too-strong tailwind. Here's what does matter: Homosexual qualified for his first Summer Games team and served notice he's certainly someone to watch in Beijing.

"It means a lot to me," the 25-year-old Homosexual said. "I'm glad my body could do it, because now I know I have it in me."

This reminds Moveitfred of the time The Modesto Star Express ran a story on Heywood. Something about Woody single-handedly pulling a driver and his mistress to safety from a horrific I-5 raisin truck explosion.

Tired of jr. high pranksters always making light of "potty words" that appeared in hard news copy, the editors installed a similar software program that flagged the "blo" in our hero's name and turned it into JaFellatiome.

You go to Heywood's house these days and you'll see copies of the story framed all over the walls with the "fellatio" carefully struck out and the word "blo" neatly written in underneath.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Test 'Em

Boys, Moveitfred knows you two're still struggling to shed that off-season weight.

You might want to consider this, just as an approach to solving that annoying bounce (until, you know, you get it all taken care of).

Moveitfred suggests going big and hard, if you know what he means.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


The new Sampson I'm having built up. Doing it with a Centaur/Chorus group. (Fuck you, I refuse to say "gruppo." And I don't go to Starbucks, but if i did, I'd only say "large." )

Saturday, June 21, 2008


In which Al says, "OW! FUCK!"

I have fucked myself good and hard. 2 weeks ago, while ripping up flooring, carrying in wallboard, moving in and out cabinets, moving appliances, I severely herneated 2 discs in my back. This caused severe impingement on the nerve and essentially crippled me.

I'm doing a lot better now. I'm still in a good deal of pain and am not moving well. I still have a lot of limitation on movement and numbness/tingling down my left side. My tri season is over. BUT...The good news is that I am responding well to steroid therapy (2nd round of oral right now). Next week, I'll probably have a process where a specialist will use a fluoroscope and go in and inject 'roids right into the herneation. This is supposed to be very effective. Then we shall see. I've got a lot of impingement on the nerve which is causing the numbness, tingling, and muscle weakness. This is problematic as it can cause permanent damage. If the 'roids don't improve this, then I'll need at least one surgery. I'm hoping the AH-NOLD approach will work, and I won't need the cut job.

To make myself feel better, I just bought a nice Sampson Ti road frame, and I'm having it built up with a SRAM build kit. Pics shortly. I'm selling off the TT bike. Fuck it. My plan is to be well enough to ride in the RAC (Ride Around the College) with Fred at Summer's end.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Friday Night Fiasco

Just a few fotogs from the friday night racing out on the beautiful east end of the island paradise.

Oh, and this is what happens when you "make boo-boo" at the end of the race. Free night in the ER, stunning neck brace, and a stiff bed. This is how Moveitfred's race ended, but Moveitfred was nowhere near the pavement dance. Moveitfred peeled off early because God told him something like this might happen.

And Moveitfred is going to keep his opinions to himself about that whole thing.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Apples and Als

Gwad recently asked the intriguing question: whatever happened to Fiona Apple?

Moveitfred believes the answer can be found in the catacombs and secret spots of Al's home reno project.

Recently Al has taken on the affectation of a disturbed criminal mind. Before leaving the factory he will often shuffle up to Moveitfred and quip: "Time to go home now and have a bite of my apple...." He'll then punch the clock and hump it out to his rusted-out, circa 1977 Dodge van.

It's all very creepy.

Moveitfred believes that if Ms. Apple is not spotted soon someone needs to call the authorities.


Al here, you there. al is feeling very battered from several weeks of labor on the home reno project. We're coming along. Pics soon.

Al has the Long Island Goldcoast tri this weekend, Father's Day. This is a Sprint Tri, and, after the week we're having here, I doubt the water temp will be an issue. 90s and 909% humidity for several days. Nice training weather...NOT!

Anyway, here's a little something for Yogi Fred. (Off to class tonight, Fred-o?) I Think I'm beginning to understand what motivates you...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Pigs around Heywood's House

It has been a while since I have been on the road bike with the Chef. He has the pesky knee pain ever since Super Bowl Sunday which has greatly reduced the types of rides he is capable of doing. Yes, that is approaching four months ago and it still bugs him. An occasional ride with the local ladies club is about all he can handle without causing severe pain. By the way, all the girls in this club have a similar riding position to Al B so this should explain why they go so leisurely down the road.

Finally the two of us were able to get out on the bike together for a beautiful ride in the hills around town. First I should explain to the readers of this fine blog that we each were riding our own bike. For some reason with partners like Al and Fred, I feel I have to explain this. Anyway, I was planning to ride for 4-5 hours while the Chef only had a few hours before his shift started at the factory. After an hour or so, the Chef turned around and headed for home.

The area we were riding is not very populated. Most would call it rural. Few people, less cars, and even fewer cyclists. While the Chef is coming down the hill towards a three-way intersection, he glances around for the rare car and sees none. He then proceeds to run the intersection. What he didn’t see was the pig (California Highway Patrol) parked under a tree a few hundred feet away from the corner. What he did see was the lights of the pig’s car that were turned on instantaneously after he ran the stop sign. That cock sucker (the CHP guy, not the Chef) whipped out his ticket book and filled it out. Actually gave the Chef a ticket for running a stop sign in the middle of nowhere. What a freaking joke. No cars, no pedestrians, and he still got a $300 ticket.

In California, this ticket goes on the driving record just as if you were driving a car. What a crock of SHIT. His insurance will go up now plus he will pay the fine. One does not even need a license to ride a bike but if one possesses a CA driver’s license, all moving violations in a motorized vehicle or not are attached to it. BULL SHIT! I personally have not had too many bad experiences with the law but it sure is understandable why they are despised of by so many.