Wednesday, 29 May 2013

spoken word

had a day listening to spoken word while painting yesterday. things that caught my attention...

a heart full of petals? you can't argue with that!

not that i was having a bad day but cheeringly upbeat

and what cheerier than leonard?

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

pink turtle

continuing on from the last post...

and slightly more contemporary..

Monday, 27 May 2013

the lost fingers

meanwhile, down memory lane, something like this....

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

cycle perthshire

and angus!

after that last post I couldn't very well not get on my bike today. I had my first rehab ride yesterday, easy on the miles, very flat. so long as i'm keeping my cadence steady, the hills to a minimum and my breathing steady i'm more or less able to get my legs turning. no heroics on the ascents for at least a couple of weeks tho.

but, despite stupid levels of wind, a great wee circuit out the back roads and into angus and back. I never cease to marvel just how lucky i am - even on a bad day! - to have so many roads to get out and about on. and that in itself means a minimum of main roads which, even here, can only be a good thing. of course the sun was shining which made all the difference but I can't think, even allowing for rib related issues of anything I'd rather have been doing. after the winter deluge finally seems to be subsiding, the flowers are making their appearance, the trees are in leaf and the wildlife is out in abundance.

i was out with an australian guy a few years back and the thing that's stayed with me since then was his constant amazement at how green everything was. so green it'd made it worth coming halfway round the world. i can't argue. the more miles you have in your legs the better this area will be but even if not there's an abundance of places to go.

a rest tonight and then out again tomorrow. can't wait.

that's got to hurt

those lovely people at alpkit sent me this today. I didn't think lizarov frames got used much, if at all, any more. ouch!
fair play to joe tho and good luck to him. details of what he's going to be doing here

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

more giro

that wiggins should lose more time on yesterday's stage came as no surprise but it was a surprise i would've liked to have learned from actually watching the stage rather than foolish clicking open the guardian, a paper it appears that has no conception of the word spoiler. you should know by now says t and indeed i should.

not seeing the stage live was down to being in the shop where i was ensconced just in case i 'did anything stupid'. i'd intended some poetry type work but, it turns out, the shop is really, really noisy for that sort of caper so instead i got fired into a new mixed media thing that's been exercising my mind for a wee while. headphones on. grand fun. if i can get my room in the house cleared it'll be painting next.

it's tricky watching the giro as all i want to do is be back out on the bike but that's something that won't be happening for a wee while yet. i may sit on the trainer and turn my legs later but mainly to see if my chest is going to work. the reason for this being that i decided, not entirely of my own volition, to cycle into the back of a car last week. and while there were external factors involved really it was all down to me. stupid, stupid, stupid.

some broken ribs later i was back at work. two things should be noted. firstly that i was very lucky. i had two stories from a&e and the bike shop of people who'd had life changing injuries doing exactly the same as i had. the motto - no matter how cold, tired or hungry you are - look where you're going!

secondly, i had two excuses for going back to work. first, and least, there was no one else to do it and, as is my usual excuse, if i was to take time off everyone would think they could do it. they do anyway so so what? my actual cunning plan, which t was well aware of and not impressed by, was that if i could get thru my nights then i'd most likely be fit for a bit of bike. cue what can only be described as a bit of a collapse. the worst pain since i thought i'd broke my femur? i should coco. not nice!

so some sick time and a big cup of i told you so from t and many, many others. i still don't have it quite in my head that strava's 1000k challenge most likely won't be happening this month now but there's a glimmer of dawning acceptance.

and thence back to the giro. what a beautiful style roberto uran exhibited yesterday. i am liking too that kind of retro mullet thing he has going on. nibali is more conservatively tonsured but it seems to be suiting him. am i alone in thinking he's maybe shed a couple of pounds this year? after that last chain bother moment he was very spry going past evans.

and evans, who looks the most relaxed i've seen him in years. he must surely be in his twilight now but you'd need a heart of stone for the thought of seeing him in red at the end not to warm your heart. he's like the anti-wiggins and it's a joy to see all that effort right up front, face contorted, head to the side. you know where you stand with evans - he leaves it all on the road!

so the best i can do is watch the eurosport and read the blogs. there will be no imaginary giro climbs this year where i pretend (hey, it's my fevered imagination here!) that it's me who can climb and it's me who has that indefinable and graceful souplesse, even if just for an instant.

i'm gratified to see the legend that is robert millar writing for cycling news on the giro. he's kind of eased himself out of the woodwork these last few years, on his own terms as usual, and it's great to hear what he's got to say. at the opposite end of the scale there's cameron wurf's blog which is both entertaining and gets you right into the day to day of a young professional cyclist

Tuesday, 14 May 2013


recent cycling events have left me unreservedly broken so i'm reduced to a very sedentary lifestyle. on the upside this means getting my workspace at home sorted out as much as i'm able and looking towards getting away from the winter's monochrome work and back into some colour. having spent a lot more time with leaves for an installation I did a couple of years ago the above was bound to catch my eye (even if I think there was far less glue and actual flowers involved!). a funeral home advert? i'd be swayed by that advertising!

browsing down the work of tsuruko yamazaki was never going to find less than less than a whole bundle of favour with me...

i'm finding myself checking out spoon and tamago more and more these days.

even when i'm not broken...!

Thursday, 9 May 2013


I was loving the leaves in miyo ando's obon project recently. check out more images and details here

no harmon on the giro

it's giro time and what little tv we watch is gravitating towards all things italian. for the last couple of years we've both found we can work away with the burble of cycling commentary going on in the background, t being esp found of the 'harmonism'.

so we'd noticed david harmon's lack of presence this last few races but the giro? surely not? bringing declan quigley on a sub is all very well but you need someone that can actually give some chat, esp on a dull stage, and so far quigley just isn't getting it. far too much repetition of what you can very well see for yourself and asides that sound like they're being read from wikipedia.

there are many who criticise harmon's commentary style from misidentifying riders, favouring english speaking riders and general witteriness. at least the first has some justification but harmon is far from alone in this - yesterday quigley, inexplicably couldn't recognise degenkolb at the finish, and the second, for me, while people may get tired of his banging on about sky - they're the dominant team! - doesn't really hold much water and at least harmon can actually speak the languages enough to translate at the end.

as for the witteriness - eurosport and no small number of cycling viewers seem to think that a bland description of what's going on onscreen is sufficient for cyling. this is to forget that, in contrast to most other tv sports, in cycling long periods nothing happens. harmon, whatever he's been about in the past, seems to have genuine enthusiasm for both the places he's in as well as the history of the sport. so he gets it wrong sometimes. so what? so he says some stuff the viewer may not agree with. a good cycling commentator should be challenging the audience, getting them talking.

i like listening to david harmon like i used to like listening to the cricket commentary when i was studying and sometimes he's just plain funny. him and sean yates have matured and engaged as a double act - certainly others can't get anything like as much out of yates who, let's face it, can be a bit taciturn at times. and while carlton kirby should never be used in anything but small doses some of the nonsense the pair of them come out with is pure entertainment - t's favourite being the stage where they were on about the gift of the cow.

commentary is a hard job that when it's done well is made to look easy. you need someone with a bit of personality otherwise it's just dull. david harmon may be many things but dull isn't one of them. eurosport would do well to consider this if there's some contract shenanigans going on. if he's off to pastures new i wish him well. cycling related tv rantery just won't be the same without him!

Friday, 3 May 2013

the deluge

i'm so fabulously bored by the ongoing crap weather it's quite unbelievable. if i wasn't working tonight maybe i'd have been up earlier and got out for a morning ride but as it is i'm sitting psyching myself up for a trainer session while the rain (and possibly snow!!!) hammers down outside. it puts me in mind of this

a reference to which i've been looking for (in the wrong book!!) for the last two weeks. maybe the finding of it was waiting for some proper rain...