Mark (poisonkitty) wrote,

Lessons learned

Old school recycled french doors are extremely heavy. Like, in the 300lbs range. I can lift one side with much effort, but 2 fems could not manage the other side. Under Brindle's advice and pressure, I asked our elder Spaniard neighbor to help out, and we got our score parked around the side of our house. He cut his thumb (after we offered gloves and asked him to be careful), but was acting macho and hiding the fact that he had been cut. We didn't make a big deal out of it, but over a week later, he probably has a sore there. I'm clueless when it comes to dealing with overly macho guys.

In another door related event, I learned that the $200 that Home Depot advertises for new door installation is completely worth it. Unless you would otherwise spend your time earning minimum wage, pay someone to do it - you will not profit from doing it yourself. I even like doing that kind of stuff, but we spent a whole weekend messing with the installation of a new door out in Ft. Worth, and cutting and painting trim. Putting a door into a hole that's not square presents a lot of challenges, too. Well, at least the power drill and miter saw both saw some action this weekend. We're still not done. The threshold needs some concrete under the lip of it and we need to caulk, among other things.

Tonight, I took a compensatory bike ride since I didn't get to have any fun this weekend. The Katy trail gets stupidly crowded. I started riding just before 7p, and I could hardly maintain any speed. The peds would want to walk 4 and 5-wide aross a relatively small walking/biking trail. They were barely keeping from running into each other, regardless of the occasional cyclist or skater zooming by. After about 12 miles of this stop and go congestion, it finally got dark enough for people to go home. I stopped by the car, and for the first time, tried out my new bike light. It took a minute to velcro it on, but it worked out very well. It is extemely bright. I got several comments from people who I came up behind, one of which thought for a second that a car was on the trail. After a quarter lap of gloating and burning out retinas, I turned the dimmer down to about half power. I generally had to keep it pointed at the ground, but the spill light was excellent, so you really see everything around you.

I learned/remembered that I really enjoy riding at night, with or without lights. The bugs go away for the most part and so do the people/obstacles. I am also starting to understand what the single speed cyclists are talking about when they talk about simplification. I normally spend a lot of mental effort trying to figure out what gear would be optimal for a given situation. Having only one gear makes this really easy. If you want to go faster, pedal faster. If you need a break, pedal slower. That's really easy. The only real down side for my setup is that I pretty much top out just below 20mph. Beyond that, I'm just trying to move my feet in hypothetical circles, but it's really too fast to be pedaling with the gear thar I ride in. I would need to put back on my biggest chain ring in order to use higher gears. Higher gears would make climbing hills suck, though. I'm willing to give it a try.
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