Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Let The HEALING Begin!

As you may already know Tim "Masiguy" Jackson the maestro of bike-blogging took a pretty bad spill at the San Diego Velodrome last night. He hit the boards at about 30 mph trying to avoid another rider. He was on a brand new bike, 24 laps into a 25 lap race... He sustained a concussion, a broken rib and nearly severed his right thumb clean off. At the moment he has a blood clot behind his left eye and three cracked vertebrae in his neck - hence the neck brace - which they say he'll have to live with for the next six weeks. We are waiting for the results of a cat scan to determine the condition of his right knee...

Unbelievable as it sounds they expect to have him standing upright, at least a little bit, later this evening. I got to meet Masisister, Masimom and Masistepdad all at his bedside. Jill from Haro was there as well when I left. Tim is in remarkably good spirits though hurting more he said than he's ever hurt in his life. Not surprising. He has his very own morphine drip control which makes him smile. The thumb has been successfully reattached. I saw him eat food, with lots of assistance from the nurse, with my very own eyes. He's HUNGRY and that's good. It is the beginning of a long road but our man is gonna make it I'm certain!

He's at Scripps Mercy Hospital in San Diego rm# 1024. Please see Blue Squirrel's blog for more info on the actual crash.

Get well soon my dear friend. You are so loved. All the prayers, meditations and good vibrations are flowing your way.
Going to become a little ambidextrous for awhile

The thumb

Not this time Mr. Reaper

Smile Tim! You're on Morphine. (yes, that is a morphine drip smile)
Addition: Tim could go home as early as tomorrow or Friday, remarkably. We'll know more in the morning.

Addition #2: Blue Squirrel is back from his trip to the hosp. with update #4. Please have a look.

Addition #3 A tremendous outpouring of love and support is coming in from all over the globe! Spoke to Tim this morning and he is doing well. His eye is much better. Still waiting to know more about the knee. His neck is stable and doctors are happy with his progress. He's eating a little bit more and is surrounded by family and friends who are looking after him. He sends his thanks to everyone for the well wishes.

Addition #4 The brilliant Blue Squirrel is hosting a Tim Jackson Get Well Fund. Please click on the link and check it out. Lots of options for gift cards and such to help Tim with the peripherals during the down time. Thank you all.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Officially OFF THE GRID!

The Pelican has landed. Yup, it's true, I have found a new home, and my address is:

I can't tell you how much chuckling pleasure this little fact gives me. You can enter the address all you want and Google remains mute. The satellite map shows the area but not the road! Tee hee hee hee... I didn't think it was possible. It's high in the hills above Santa Barbara not someplace like... the Appalachians for heaven's sake! But I am reveling in the anonymity. It reminds me of the movie where Dudley Moore tells a friend: "I'm incommunicado." and the woman on the phone asks: "Where is that?" Dudley says: "Next to Cognito".

If you look closely you will see the road on the top of the ridge that is now my home training ground.

"Cognito" is at the top of a well worn epic hill climb. Santa Barbara cycling pals will easily guess where it is (expect summit brunch party soon). The house itself is rather cabin-like but contains all the modern conveniences. There is a pot bellied stove and fireplace to lessen dependence on the electric heaters for warmth. However, no cable, so satellite is necessary for TV, and radio reception depends on tricky antenna placement. God bless Blue Tooth!

One thing there is plenty of here: QUIET and lots of stars. We also have something called "sundowners", high gusting winds that come up as the sun sets. They routinely blow the plastic deck chairs over the railing where they fall to the ground two stories below. There are lots of welcome animal sounds day and night, nice neighbors with beautiful gardens, a babbling creek and swimming holes. Yeah, I said swimming holes! I'll be starting my own veggie garden too.

Once again, in more pictures than words:

The view from the top

Alarm clock

Pest control

If the phone cuts out I'm blaming this guy

In the gardens

Poppies at the roadside

On the Boulevard of Broken Dreams...

Maybe this is the Appalachians!
(actually a former director of the Botanical Gardens lives here, go figure.)

Top of the creek bed


"I have made fire! I... have made fire!
(Tom Hanks ain't got nothin' on me)

Those close to me know that this relocation (after 12 years in Del Mar) has been a long journey indeed. As a special bonus that is evidence that the Great Spirit is watching over me after all my new house mate is a partner in a local winery: "Help yourself to all the wine you can drink. Plenty of wine!"

It's going to be a cozy year.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Jennifer Wilson brings the proper attitude

I made it to the Redlands Classic for the criterium on April 5th, day three of the annual jamboree. What follows are a few words and a slew of pictures.

Mara Abbott - the one to beat in yellow, and Katharine Carroll called up to the front.

My primary mission was to meet with Michael Engleman of US Women's Cycling Development Program and Dave Varrechia of Vanderkitten Racing, as, in addition to racing myself, I am seriously considering the notion of working to promote women's cycling in various capacities.

Leah Guloien and Jenny Trew

Goal #2 was to meet as many of my cycling sisters as possible...and watch a really good race. For all the women I met I will say this: they are really warm, open people, FUN, dedicated and SMART. I found myself in a sea of EXTREME multi-taskers. Nearly all of them have very complicated lives that include husbands and children, college degrees to finish, careers to maintain. They count the bruises and scars on their bodies with a shrug as just part of the journey. Almost all are surprisingly under compensated for what they do and sacrifice far more than time and energy to be part of the sport. Each would make a wonderful role model for young women any day of the week! It makes a girl feel privileged to be in the midst of such dynamic women and they are all so welcoming to newcomers like me.

Waiting for the shot.

Some of the girls were having a hard start to the season. Some were getting over the flu. Some were just beginning to feel symptoms of the flu. Others were still not quite recovered from injuries sustained in the races of recent weeks. A few were all smiles and at the top of their game. Liz Hatch who was still recovering from that nasty spill in Visalia was "...just happy to be back on the bike" but DNF the first stage. My USWCDP girl Kris Keim (Kenda) who had mechanical issues early on never quite got in the groove and said 'enough' during the crit. Heather Sborz seemed to be struggling through the last laps and no wonder, she got sick soon after reaching home. It's early yet.

One thing is certain, the season has just begun to ramp up and anywhere the ladies are on the course it's guaranteed to be a great show!

Emilia Fahlin's moment in the sun.

One thing I discovered on this trip: I love to get out to a part of the course where there aren't a lot of spectators cheering. I love that sound of the peloton, 100 or more wheels all whirring together at 25mph or more. I love that whirring sound!

Some photos from the course - imagine the whirring sound for yourself...

Getting underway a few laps in.

Mara taking care of business.

Taking the Sixth Street turn.

Little Millie already a champ and the future of women's racing!

Spring has sprung - a wild rose from the trailside

If I get names wrong or leave anyone out please leave a comment and I'll correct it immediately.