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Sh!t my kid says and YOU’RE WELCOME.

So, the first time, my family went on the Michigander, I brought my kindle along. It was a pain in the ass to charge, because everyone has a cell phone that needs to be charged, but it was nice to have a bazillion books to read.

The second time my family went on the Michigander, I was sick of all my digital books and I was nearly done with reading one of the best series ever.

It’s Harry, bitch.

The logical decision was to bring the damn book along. On a bike trip. Cuz, you know. YOLO.*

Dad: Your bag is so heavy.

Me: Well, you know, I’ve got some of the baby’s stuff in there. His crap won’t all fit in his little roll-y dinosaur trunk.

Inner Monologue: For real, it’s HP7. It’s J.K. Rowling‘s fault because she wrote a fucking truckload.

On this trip, Boo saw me reading the HP greatness. Being the smarty pants kid that he is, he asked the basic questions for a three year old.

Boo: Who’s he?

Me: Harry Potter.

Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson & Rupert Grint (...

Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson & Rupert Grint (left to right) at the world premiere of Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part 2 in London, England (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Boo: Oh. What’s he say?

Me: Expelliarmus.

Boo: Oh. Who’s this guy?

Me: Voldemort.

Voldemort as project manager

Voldemort as project manager (Photo credit: kevin dooley)

Boo: What’s he say?

Me: Avada Kedavra.

Boo: Oh.

Boo: Avada Kedavra!

Me: Just like that. But first, you need to have a wand, and second, we don’t like that spell.

Boo: Oh.

A few months after the bike trip, we were at Meijer. Boo was still on a “catch phrase” period of talking, so there was a lot of “expelliarmus” spells getting thrown around. We happened to be venturing down the aisle that Meijer calls a book aisle when Boo saw it. Harry Potter and the Deathly HallowsJust like Mom’s.

He gets excited. He points at the book. I’m excited too — because HARRY POTTER. But then the greatest moment in the history of small children and Harry Potter happened.

We’re walking away from the book, when Boo swivels in the child portion of the cart, points down the aisle, which has one 30 something innocent woman in it, and hollers. Avada Kedavra.

The woman has obviously read Harry Potter because her jaw just drops and she stares at us as we walk by. I’m not sure if I should be embarrassed, or if I should laugh or what. But my kid just Avada Kedavra’d that lady in Meijer.

I’m telling this story to one of my friends and she gets excited.

“You should absolutely read all the Harry Potters to Boo. You can write down what he says and blog it because it will all. be. hilarious.”

To which I responded, “YES, BUT HAVE YOU READ MUGGLEHUSTLE?”

YOU’RE WELCOME.

*I’m so sorry I said YOLO. I don’t know what came over me. CARPE MOTHERFUCKING DIEM.

I’m [in]famous!

You may remember a post a few years ago when my family first rode on the Michigander. I met a tall handsome stranger, who rode a bike, somehow looked good in spandex, and had abs that were pretty much able to be eaten off of. He was so pretty – the only issue was that he thought I was a high schooler.

The next year, returning to the scene of the BikeGuy:

“I remember you,” BikeGuy tells me. “Not a newbie anymore.”

“Second time around,” I respond. I can’t stop staring at his face.

Last year, he was scruffy, with shaggy hair and a bandana. This year, his hair is a little more tame, but…

He has grown a fabulous beard.

“You’re tanner than last year.” He’s scrutinizing me. “And your hair is longer. And your kid is huge.”

I nod. “Yes. But You. You’ve grown a beard.”

He gives me a long stare. Maybe the beard comment was inappropriate somehow.

“You’re a hockey fan, aren’t you?” He asks.

I realized then, that I was known…I was remembered. It was the next best thing to being famous. Well, almost.  Because it was only one person. But it was a step. And it was awesome.

Until it happened.

That one moment where all of a sudden I learned to fly for a nano second…before learning how to crash, slide on my head, obtain armfuls of road rash, bruise myself, and have a bike crash into me.

You might remember this. Why might you remember this? Well, one, because I blogged about it last year. Two, because now, I’m not famous. I’m infamous.

I realized this again when I posted earlier in the week about the McKayla incident. You know, where she didn’t get the gold medal, and made a face, and now is not impressed with anything ever? Well, congratulations to McKayla, because along with winning a gold medal in the team competition and a silver in the vault, you have won notoriety on the interwebs for all sorts of face-making-meme-forming debauchery! Your prize has already arrived in the form of millions of people talking about your scowl.

Let’s go back to the Michigander 2k12.

We’ve just arrived. I’m determined to finish this year, especially after learning that the scene of my fall last year was only 10 miles from the finish line.

…10 miles that I apparently could have finished. Yes, I was bruised. Yes, I was bleeding. Yes, my bike was missing a few spokes and my brake was bent a little. But I could have finished. 

So, there I am. I’m preparing to bike the entire trip, and not fall or injure myself or really anything that involves not crossing the finish line. Because, yeah, the Michigander has a finish line. 

Photobucket

this dude is always at the finish line

I’ve even gone all out. I am in spandex. I have my bike shorts on, my multiple Michigander wristbands. My bike and helmet are color coordinated, even though that kind of just happened in the past few years when I got my new bike. I’m so pumped and ready to go when another person on the tour sees me and stops me.

She grabs me by the shoulders and looks into my eyes. I remember this woman, but I can’t place where from.

“The last time I saw you,” she begins. “You were flat on your back on the side of the road.”

Oh right.

I laugh. “Yes, that sounds like me. Took a bad fall last year.”

Her eyes are huge now. “I know! I saw that fall! I saw the whole thing! I’m so glad that you’re back!”

…and then she hugs me.

Fast forward. It’s a couple days from the end of the trip and we’re about to stop at a SAG stop loading up with water and twizzlers. This SAG is run by a family that volunteers for the tour. I remember some of the them from the years before. We arrive and I’m filling up my water bottle by the family.

“Do you remember me?” the mother asks.

I nod. “Yeah, this is our third year now biking.”

“Yes,” she says. “But you were the one, weren’t you?”

“Um,” I shrug. “I’m the mom. It’s my kid in the trailer that’s getting pulled by the tandem.” I figure that’s what they’re referring to.

“No, no.” she clarifies. “It was you last year that we helped? You took that spill.”

“Oh,” I fake a smile. I’m pretty sure my face is purple from embarrassment. “Yup. That was me. I still have the bruises.”

Fast forward again. The family has stopped so Boo can take a pee break and I’m bitching about my new found fame. An older couple pulls up and stops with us and hears me complaining. They laugh at all the right points in my story, and laud me for not falling this time around.

“You can do it,” the woman encourages me. “Show them all that you are better than when you fell off the bike!”

“We will see you at the finish line!” her husband adds.

One last fast forward. We’re on the last mile of the trip. I haven’t fallen. I am team awesome. My dad and I are debating how to cross the finish line. We want to find a way to pull a Lance Armstrong and throw both hands in the air.

“-Downside being, that if you throw your hands up too quickly and get off balance, you could fall.” I reason this out.

“That wouldn’t be a very good way to end the tour.” My father tells me.

“It’d be a good photo opp though,” I say. “Especially if you throw your hands up. Because you AND Mom AND the tandem would all just go flying.”

“Don’t you dare go no handed,” my mom interjects from the back of the tandem.

What up, bitches. Team Awesome at the finish line.

We crossed the finish line. No one fell. As I was enjoying my piece of victory cake and my glass of awesomeness lemonade, someone else comes up to me and pats me on the back. Everyone is congratulating everyone else so I figure it’s just something like that.

“Hey, you made it!” The woman cheers me.

I give her a thumbs up as my mouth is full of cake.

“And you’re upright this year too!”

Oh, fuck you.

A post in which L.A.’s mom learns to bike with one hand.

If you’ve been around the blog awhile, and when I say the blog, I mean any of:

• The triple stop
• 2 Hotchtics 1 le blog
• Finding L.A.

…then you know that the past few years, my family has gone on a sponsored bike trip called Michigan People put on Spandex and Pedal for a week. Not really. It’s actually called the Michigander. This is our third year on it. I’ve ridden more miles than blogs I’ve posted on.

20120717-170036.jpg

Now, I’m going to hashtag the Michigander on twitter, so I feel like this should involve something about the Michigander and the trails and the miles we are riding and the people we are meeting.

But this is a humor blog.

And generally, when we arrive at the campsites at night, I’m so fucking tired that I don’t want to blog about how awesome I feel completing a day, or how exhilarating the wind when the trail finally decides to go downhill.

No.

I want to complain that my ass hurts, and my back hurts, and my bike’s handlebars are too low. Plus, we are such an entourage, that we are usually the last people into camp. We deserve a medal. Someone has to be the caboose.

But anyway…instead, I’m going to tell you an amusing tale of the road thus far.

It’s the first day. I’m still bright eyed and bushy tailed. We’ve driven in a day early to get a jump start on our morning and we are pumped. Okay, maybe not pumped. But I was a lot more excited the day my ass felt like itself than I was when I woke up this morning.

However, my family is still my family. Thus, we woke up late. We missed breakfast. We started late. C’est la vie.

Thanks to our late start, we ended up heading to Burger King for breakfast. A quick bite, and we were off. Apparently, this bite was a little too quick.

Regarding my mother…

If you’ve been reading the blog, you may have caught the fact that she doesn’t ride a bike. She rides on the the back of the tandem with my dad. Granted, she doesn’t have to work too hard to keep the balance on the tandem besides to sit still, but she still tends to keep both hands on the handlebars.

Back to the tale. So we have our BK breakfast and are heading out when I realize my mom is still carrying her coffee.

“Mom,” I tell her. “There is no way you’ll be able to keep that while riding.”

She waves me off. “It’s okay. I’ll be okay.”

Sure enough, she’s riding down the street, willing to keep one hand up, lest she spill her morning coffee.

The funny thing is…the last time I can really remember my mom without both hands on the handlebars, I was 11, and she was brandishing a stick at rabid farm dogs to protect my 13 year old sister. Kind of like a tandem riding version of:

20120717-172733.jpg

You know, except instead of Frodo, it was VS. And instead of a Balrog, it was a farm dog.

Translate that to nowadays and what do we get?

20120717-172956.jpg

My precious coffee…

Bikini Season: codename, self conscious females arise

Yesterday marked the beginning of outdoor soccer. Which should be a great thing, right? It means being outside in the sun, getting tan while you run, playing for longer…all good things, yes? Well, outdoor soccer yesterday taught me one thing yesterday:

This speaks for itself.

Before anyone starts giving me grief, I know I am thin. But there is a big difference between being thin and being in shape. And I admit it:

I am so out of shape.

It’s funny. I’ve been pretty active my whole life. I’ve been long distance biking since I was 11. Playing soccer since 6th grade.  Just constantly moving. But the older I get, the harder it is to make time for it, and now all of sudden…I have podge. And I hates the podge. Because you know what comes along with outdoor soccer?

Summer. Namely, bikini season.

I downright refuse to get to the point where I can’t wear a bikini and be okay with myself. And I’m scared I’m getting to the point where I can’t. Sure, it might just be me being self conscious about my body image, but honestly, who isn’t self conscious about at least some part of their body?

My infamous “Flamingo Pose” Left is pre baby. Center and right are post baby. Damn the fact that you can’t stay young forever.

I want to say that I’m going to go get the latest issue of Cosmo, where they’re sure to have some sort of “Get Better Abs in Two Weeks” sort of feature. I’ll cut out the article, stick it to my fridge, and diligently work out until my abs are in better shape, my body is in better shape, and most of all, I feel better about how I look.

But let’s face facts. That’s a lie.

I’m terrible at working out. Aviator and I had this discussion when we went to the gym a couple times. Working out is harder on your own. Why? Because no one is holding you accountable. No one is going to come up to you and tell you that you have to do this next set of crunches, or run for another mile, or whatnot.

That’s why soccer is good for me, even if I suck, even if I get tired, both of which usually happen — someone is holding me accountable. From time to time, that someone is yelling at me, but hell, at least I’m doing something active.

The same story is true for long distance biking. My family has gone on the Michigander bike tour for the past two years — this will be our third year this summer. You know what happens if you decide you can’t bike anymore? You’re stuck. Possibly in the middle of nowhere. Possibly with nothing to eat or drink but half a water bottle and some salt and vinegar peanuts (this actually happened to me once). You absolutely have to keep going until you reach your destination, or else you’re screwed*. That’ll hold you accountable.

My Dad and I on the Michigander last year. Photo Courtesy to MichTrails on PhotoBucket.

So, now…it’s bikini season.What keeps you working out? Workout buddy? Body Image? Someone come hold me accountable, so I can head to Grand Haven feeling good.


*Just an FYI. I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t get screwed and left in the middle of nowhere on the Michigander. I think the SAG Wagons would pick you up.  But normally on a bike trip on your own? Seriously. Screwed.

I’ve fallen head over heels and I can’t get up

So, in recent times, I have promised you a number of stories. Instead of telling those stories, I’m going to tell you a few things I’ve learned over the past few weeks. I’m big on learning lately.

1. Men in spandex can still be hot.

Ask Lady B, for example. Her fiance proposed in a unitard type outfit, and I’m not going to lie. Best proposal story ever.

My man in spandex, however, came from the bike tour I recently participated in. He was on said tour last year when I went (Read more here and here.) and made fun of me for being a virgin rider. This year, as I was a second year rider, we were much more eloquent in our conversations.

“I remember you,” BikeGuy tells me. “Not a newbie anymore.”

“Second time around,” I respond. I can’t stop staring at his face.

Last year, he was scruffy, with shaggy hair and a bandana. This year, his hair is a little more tame, but…

He has grown a fabulous beard.

“You’re tanner than last year.” He’s scrutinizing me. “And your hair is longer. And your kid is huge.”

I nod. “Yes. But You. You’ve grown a beard.”

He gives me a long stare. Maybe the beard comment was inappropriate somehow.

“You’re a hockey fan, aren’t you?” He asks.

I am in love.

2. Biking in 90+ degree heat isn’t as bad when your BFF leaves you crazy voicemails.

Somewhere around 200 miles in, Poof calls me. I’m sweaty and dying and don’t notice until that night after I shower and am laying on a gym floor while LeBebe runs around.

Hey, so I know you’re biking and all, but I’m driving to meet GoldDust and if you weren’t biking we could all be together there. But I digress. Iwas just wondering if you and your family plan your bike trip to correspond with the tour de france. Because it’s happening at the same time as your whirlwind bike trip, and I was just wondering. I was also wondering, if you have a little yellow jumpsuit while you were biking to show you were the fastest rider. Of course your dad is probably the fastest biker because you got the baby on the back, but maybe you could get the polka dot jersey for the mountains or something. anyway, I was just wondering if that was how your family did that. So, one night when you have a break, I hope you will call me, because I miss you and I have no idea when you’re coming back. K, Bye!

For the record. I would totally be wearing the yellow jersey. And the polka dot jersey. But that because I am on a single and my parents ride on this:

You can’t climb hills riding on this.

3. Bruises fade.

Even now, the monstrosity that was on the side of my leg is a fading memory. All that remains is a faint echo of the injury that once was, in a shape that reminds me of Richard Avedon‘s classic photos of the Beatles.

Richard-Avedon-03

Image by Pineapples101 via Flickr

 

Come along for an adventure on L.A.’s bicycle.

It’s raining. Hard. I’m pedaling furiously. Next thing I know, I’m having the idea that this is what it must be like to fly.

I’m suddenly upside down and all I can see is the road. It’s coming towards to me until I crash. I’m all set to relish in the fact that hot damn, I’ve crashed my bike and landed on my head. When I see something else. It’s my bike. Sliding towards me.

It slams into me, and bike and I go sliding down the pavement until the bike decides it doesn’t want to push me along anymore. I shove it off me only to realize I’m lying spread eagled in the right hand lane of a four lane highway.

There’s a car that has pulled over and an old woman is sticking her head out into the rain.

“Did your poncho get caught?” She yells over at me.

No, bitch. And I’m fine, by the way.

4. You should never read too much into titles. I bet you thought this would be a piece about love, falling head over heels and all.

Nope. Just biking. And bodily injury.