I went for a run.

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Having two kids has meant less exercise, and less time to think. I hatched a plan to kill both birds with one stone: running. I kept a tight rein on my gearhead shoulder-devil and purchased only what I absolutely needed: shoes.

When I got home from my first run, my thighs wanted me to type an internet-ism that I refuse to type out. I can put it in a speech bubble next to a drawing, though, because Google can’t read that, index it, and associate me with it. Yet. I think.

Afterthought: since regular runners keep wearing out old shoes, presumably bright white laces aren’t a sure giveaway of a non-runner pretending. Bike shorts with chamois may be more telling. Let’s just leave running ability right out of the discussion.

P.S. I love my Ground Effect bike shorts. They’re strong, they fit great, and they don’t need itchy silicone or elastic grippers to stay put. I have Sputniks and Supersonics that are a few years old.

That was fast

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I have a whole thing to write about the mysteriously powerful physical aversion to technology I developed a few months ago, which made it much more boring to try to write blog posts. I really should write that post first to set the stage for this. However, this is a fast post and that doesn’t seem so fast to write, so let’s skip to the point: we’re expecting a sibling for G late this summer.

I’m not all that comfortable as a personal blogger, and there are certainly already plenty of good (and consistent) bloggers who share their experiences of pregnancy in ways that are often helpful, so I’m inclined not to write a lot about it. But it does become a large factor in your life when you’re doing it.

For instance, it has caused my Fat Cyclist jersey to become too tight.

It still looks plausible that I’ve just been eating “too many pies” (as they say here), but that ain’t it. In any case, I don’t think they mean apple pies, or pecan pies, or other kinds that I might eat too many of.

It’s time to start stealing F’s jerseys. I may have to buy him some new ones first. And I wonder whether it’s time for me to have the bib shorts revelation.

So back to the “not comfortable” bit. My original inclination was to cover up that smug look on my face with some frivolous graffiti — I had in mind a confused superposition of The Count and Count Rugen:

Eventually, I decided to bite the bullet and swallow my pride (I guess it was inside the bullet) and leave the photo unadulterated.

G asked who this was a picture of. I said it was Mommy. G replied: “Mommy with beautiful hair.” I just don’t know how to take that.

A post

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A what??

This morning the back tire on the Cargobike was flat.

G didn’t wish us success in fixing the flat. At two-and-a-bit years old, she demonstrated a new level of sophistication this morning: "Bike is broken. We have to take the bus. Yes. Need to go to the bus stop!" It wasn’t just the fact that she verbalized the thoughts coherently that struck me. She was insisting, trying to convince us to abandon the repair effort and head for the bus stop, through an argument she thought might be more convincing than "I want to go on the bus!" I’d love to take her on the bus more often, just because she enjoys it. The problem is that it takes two buses plus two significant walks to get to the nursery, and then another walk and another bus to get to work. Repeat, in reverse, to get home. And then fix the bike.

I couldn’t find a hole so I stuck a patch on a dodgy-looking spot on the tube for good luck, even though I don’t think that was leaking, and stuffed the tube back in. Pre-posting edit: Still seems fine a few hours later.

I suspect the seal on the valve. There’s been a very slow leak for a long time and this is the second time I’ve failed to find a hole in the tube. The plan is to ask Hugh to replace the tubes and tires as it’s been on the order of 2500 miles on these ones anyway, and the frequency of flats has gone up. We’d like to swap to Schrader valves but I’m not sure if that’s possible, or a good idea with respect to the hole in the rim. The Cargobike’s huge low-pressure rear tire is, to me, the antithesis of a racing tire, and I just don’t know (yet) why Schrader isn’t standard there. Schraders have been dead reliable for us on our other bikes (we don’t really do above 85psi in this family at the moment).

I suspect Presta valves of a sort of sentience: if you don’t like them, they won’t like you. To compound our particular problem, we had a spiffy aluminum Lezyne pump with a thread-on flexible hose, which was a bad combination with fixing flats on the Presta valve in situ. The hose has to bend, and you have to thread it onto something that itself is held in with a nut threaded onto the valve body — a recipe for letting the air all out as you (I) try to remove the hose after pumping. Gorgeous mini pump. Just somehow akin to a Presta valve in that I can’t make it practical despite knowing others love it. I recently bought a Topeak Road Morph, which has a nice flip-lock mechanism on the head, can be held against the ground by your foot, and comes set up for Presta by default, but which, being meant for road bikes, doesn’t seem to pack a whole lot of air into each stroke. If it would fit next to G’s seat in the box, I’d have the Topeak Joe Blow track pump with me all the time.

Here’s where I stop, read properly, rewrite, add photos, etc. Not. I think I’ll post it like this.