Saturday, February 25

BIG Babble

Building Our Way to North Texas Infrastructure Bliss? The Highway 121/114
Multi-Billion Dollar Construction Zone at the Time of "Peak Oil"

Not Bill's Tricross, But WITH it in Spirit
Sometimes, real life intersects all this blogging stuff. Last night, some of us around DFW that have loosely associated with the Google Group "Cyclebabble" got to meet a "fellow traveller." Specifically, we got to meet Bill "Big Oak." Bill is based in Indiana. Yes, that's the very same Indiana where Breaking Away was set, though Bill is fortunate enough to have chosen a Specialized Tricross for commuting rather than a Masi. Living in Indiana instead of North Texas is a mixed situation for Bill. He gets a little extra snow (like at left), but misses out on the blistering North Texas summers.
Anyway, here's how things unfolded. In an unusual move for myself, I carpooled with Chandra "Chandra." This prompted a note to myself about a couple of future posts. First, a while back, I started another myth series post about the folly about trying to build ourselves to paradise via infrastructure. One clue to its direction is the photo at the top of this post. A second is about the pleasant aspects of rising gas prices. That clue is ALSO in the same photo. Conveniently, I had time to ride home from work and then pick  up "Piglet" from my indulgent wife for the ongoing carpool trip to the rendezvous.
Before too awfully long, I arrived at Chandra "Chandra's" place of employment. One look at the car fortress in the next photo illustrates why Chandra has that plant that is gradually taking over his work space. I didn't actually get to see where his bike parks. It seemed like a quest best left for another day.
The "Car Fort" Where Chandra Works
When Chandra and I linked up, we headed out from there to Tarrant County. While I actually LIVE in the portion of Tarrant County that we were headed to, I must confess that the freeways in between Chandra's place of employment and there are somewhat of a mystery to me. As a result, we were soon lost in automotive infrastructure and were somewhere down by Cowboy Stadium. We were, in a word, LOST.

After somewhat added delay, we got to the restaurant where we had agreed to meet. It was really WORTH the toil and trouble. One shock to me was that somehow I'd never figured out the basis for "Big Oak's" nickname. All those giant bike frames in his blog went right past me. I hope this provides some insight as to how I consistently FAIL to be able to get license plate numbers of motoring scofflaws.

Anyway, besides Chandra and myself, Paul "Doohickie" and Chris "Pondero" attended, as well as Myles "Rattrap Press" and his wife. Watch their blogs for more on this event. Maybe even Myles. As I noted to him, despite his claimed final ever post, even Sean Connery did another James Bond movie: "Never Say Never Again." We can always hope...

Chris "Pondero" and Chandra "Chandra" Beam for the Camera
Oh, almost forgot. Yes, "Big Oak" and his wonderful wife were both there. They are a lucky couple, at least in IMO. As is my typical "Modus Operandi," I dispensed some completely useless bicycle advice to her.

Bill "Big Oak" and "Mrs Big Oak" in Hurst, Texas. Myles "Rat Trap Press and "Mrs Myles Rat Trap Press" in Foreground
During the night, it did not pass without the remark occurring that someone was missing. THAT person is show below, from a previous "Cyclebabble" gathering. So he can understand, turn on the Google translator and convert all this babble into French.

Paul "Doohickie," With "Mrs Big Oak" and Chris "Pondero" in the Background.
In the Interests of Full Disclosure, This Photo was Edited to Remove "Devil Eyes" from Doohickie
Conspiracy Types Might Wonder What Connection He Has to the End of the World in 2012...

The ENTIRE Group, Well Except for Yours Truly and "The Missing Man"
Note the BASIS for the "Big Oak" Nickname!
Anyway, like at one previous event, in the interest of completeness, I include Doohickie, modelling "the missing man."

Doohickie, in HONOR of "The Missing Man"


RANTWICK said...

Thanks for putting me there in spirit, man. I travel very little, so vicarious meals in Texas are cool as a substitute.

Pondero said...

Thanks for documenting this most excellent gathering. I can't believe I forgot my camera. Thanks to Bill for taking time out of his travels to inspire us all to assemble, talk about bikes, and get to know each other a little better.

I had a blast.

Big Oak said...

What exactly did you say to her, anyway? I think I'm going to have to buy her a new bike now. Something about all the energy she is wasting, her bike is too heavy, it doesn't fit right. This Texas trip might be way more expensive than I thought.

Seriously, it was great to meet you in person. I promise to post more photos of my Tricross!

Steve A said...

Seriously, I said to try little tweaks to see what made things better or worse. Tell her there is a dramatic difference in "official" size between my smallest comfortable bike and my biggest. Of course, my biggest one would be a trifle to - BIG OAK!

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