It’s been quite a bit longer than I had planned since the last post. That’s not to say I haven’t been working on blog related things, I just haven’t done a good job documenting them. As my last post mentioned, I bought the ingredients for a second batch of Leftover EPA, and it is now resting in the secondary fermentor in my room. I plan on doing a full write-up of the beer shortly. I have also tasted many more beers since the last post, but I seem to have misplaced quite a few of my notes. I’ll post those tasting notes over the next week or so.
I’m still on break at the moment, but several obstacles have prevented me from completing the beer table and kegerator that I had planned on building over holiday. The first being that I managed to overdraft my checking account for the first and hopefully last time, and the second that I need to move at the end of February. I think I’ll wait until I have a more constant supply of money and housing before undertaking any more adventures.
While those plans seem to be on lay away, the biking world is still going strong. When I originally bought my Karate Monkey, I had the intention of riding it as a winter bike, using those ginormous 29″ tires to cuts through the banks of snow between me and my various destinations. So far, it has been a complete success. I have been working downtown the past few weeks and have been riding the KM from Dinkytown to work almost everyday (save for those few days where the temp was well below zero). As the temperature dropped, I’ve managed the cold pretty well. I’ve been layering various fleeces and sweatshirts and using my rainjacket as a windbreaking shell. My mish-mash collection of awesome (smart-wool) and terrible (5 year old, with holes in the bottom) boot socks have kept my toes and ankles warm successfully. To keep my noggin warm, I’ve been wearing a balaklava under my helmet. My old ski goggles have been protecting my eyes from wind, sun, and various debris.
About a month ago, I ventured over to Freewheel again, this time to by a bike rack. I would have ideally bought one of Surly’s “Nice Rack” racks, but they are hella expensive, and wouldn’t fit over my disc brake calipers. Instead, what I found was a seat post mounted rack with side mounts for panniers. I also bought two collapsible wire cargo… things that attach in place of panniers. The rack mounts to the post with four hex bolts, so I can attach/unattach it in under five minutes. This means I only have to ride with the extra weight when I plan on using the rack (ie, not when I’m on the single track at Theo Worth park).
Earlier this week, I got my first chance to actually put the thing to use when I bought my first groceries since buying the rack. I headed over to Rainbow and stocked up on the food stuff. I folded out the wire… things, and slid in my two reusable grocery bags. They fit perfectly. In between the two bags I nestled my OJ and potato chips then slapped two bungie cords across the top of the whole mess. I was suprised how much actually fit onto that bike. I was even more suprised When I tried to mount my bike and discovered how much those groceries actually weigh. Riding was fine once I got up to speed, but starting and stopping were more perilous as the rack would wobble with all the weight of the groceries hanging off the back of my seat. All in all, I would call the racks a success, especially considering I bought more groceries than I normally would. I plan on making a trip to northern brewer in the near future– the rack will be coming with me.