Monday, October 17, 2005

I fear that by the time you read this, I may already be dead…

Another journal-style weekend recap…

So the remnants of the sickness still harass my body in the form of a nasty-sounding chunky cough. It’s not pretty at all.

Team Angry Monkey encountered a setback this weekend; three of us, myself included, have been sidelined with this illness, and one member is injured with a bike-related bruised and/or cracked rib. This setback is only temporary; we still have almost three full weeks until Iceman.

Physical weakness aside, it was an interesting, although typical, weekend. Drinks with friends on Friday; on Saturday we spent the entire day driving from end-to-end in this city, looking for a new entertainment center. You’d think this would be a simple process – it’s not. After several hours of serious looking, we have yet to find the right one.

Saturday night we went to a fundraiser for the Midwest AIDS Prevention Project (MAPP). My friend was volunteering there, and while it’s a worthwhile cause and I will mention the organization here now, I was not a huge fan of the place it was held at, and will not mention their name. It was one of those Ferndale bars that desperately wants to be a New York bar, and tries to achieve this by charging too much for the drinks and behaving as if it’s a huge inconvenience to give you any sort of service, never mind good service. That being said, I will erase this place from my mind and simply not go there anymore (Although I can't truly erase it from my mind, lest I accidentally go there again).

Sunday was another charity event, as well as simply a good time. My wife and I went to the Michigan Mountain Bike Association/Team Tree Farm Fall BBBB (Bulletin Board Biker Bash) out at Lakeshore Park. Team Tree Farm set out a great grilled spread, and I was part of the chili cook off.

I know this photo isn't great, but they will get better, I swear! I was really not feeling well this day, and I had been up since early in the morning making chili. I ate, took a fast picture, rode the trail, and left. I wouldn't even have gone if I hadn't promised to bring a pot of chili.

Unfortunately, on Sundays in Michigan, stores don’t sell beer until noon, so I arrived at the park at 12:05, moments after the chili was judged. Even so, my chili was quickly devoured, leading me to believe that a favorable response from the public is good enough for me. The pot of chili was a charity act on my part as well; everyone who ate chili had to make a donation that went to Trips For Kids. Trips For Kids is a non-profit that provides mountain bike outings and environmental education for kids who would not otherwise be exposed to such activities. So the contest was not the reason I did it anyway.

Even with our illnesses, my wife and I broke away from the bbq for a while to hammer out nine miles of trail. Physically I feel good; my legs are ready for the race, I just need my lungs to heal up.

After a day of beer, hot dogs and chili, we needed to recultivate our palates, so we went out for a nice seafood dinner at McCormick & Schmick's. A bottle of wine, raw oysters and mounds of fresh seafood left us feeling happy with how the weekend had ended, even if we were still diseased and could not find the right entertainment center… good food is funny that way, isn’t it?


Jennifer said...

You must post your chili recipe, secrets be damned! I made a cauldron-full myself, Sunday, thinking the spicy heat would loosen up the chest conjestion. No such luck.

We'll do our best to special order plenty of snow and ice for you. Is the race on the VASA trail this year?

Feel better soon, Ryan.

alpharat said...

Damn you Zilla! Don't you dare order me up any more snow or ice than is necessary. If at all possible, I would like things to be sunny and 60!

Iceman hits portions of the VASA ski trail this year, not VASA singletrack, which I don't think could handle the traffic.

As far as my chili recipe, it's not top secret, and I an willing to give it out, but all of my spice amounts are eyeballed; I don't have a set amount for the spices I use.

tanagrame said...

Holy crap! I made one trip out to enjoy myself this weekend--Friday night at Union Street and Martinis at The Majestic Cafe--and I paid hell fire for it. I literally could not leave my bed for two days! How on earth did you manage to drudge yourself around?

I also would like that chili recipe. I have one as well that I swear by. I'll send it to you.