Wednesday, October 31, 2007

sighthounds and coursing

dancing hounds: amelia, boris and dmitri
running hounds: dmitri, amelia, and boris
three borzois in flight
regular visitors to the sermonette know that i am fond of sighthounds. i have three of them, amelia, boris, and dmitri. amelia and boris, borzoi-greyhound mix, are called "longdogs." dmitri, a borzoi, greyhound, scottish deerhound mix, is called a "staghound." i love watching them run, dance and play. possessing unbelievable energy, they exude a joy and a love of movement that i have seen in nothing else. i get to witness this in my back yard, several times daily, or at the dog park in raccoon river park. there are organizations around the world which sanction coursing events in which the hounds, by breed, chase a lure, usually small plastic white bags, which are tied to a rope that is pulled by an electic motor which leads the hounds around a course, usually from 500 to 800 meters in length. these dogs are beautiful in flight; they move as i can only dream. they put their bodies through amazing contortions as they tear around the route, chasing the little white lure.
click here for a series of photos professionally taken in rapid succession, showing several breeds of sighthounds [ibizan hound, podenco andaluz, whippet, afghans, rhodesian ridgeback, saluki, borzoi, irish wolfhound, and another borzoi] tearing ass across the grassy field. just watch how these exuberant hounds put ass over applecart going so quickly after that damned lure.
they're just amazing.
seriously, check out those photos, and marvel at how a real speed merchant gets around.

RAGBRAI 2008: picture this in black with yellow accents

with our new hero lance up front, and behind, there's the one he's dating, and the one who IS in "weeds" in case he gets confused, too.
[click on the hidden words to learn more!]

tuesday night gravel rides--here's what you're missing!

we'll see you next week.

coffee lovers go ape over art

azy, great ape trust playmate of the month
earlier, i posted a story about the current art exhibit at zanzibar's coffee adventure, 2723 ingersoll avenue, des moines. i mentioned that the paintings were selling quite rapidly. well, truth be told, they all sold, within three days--and raised $10,000 for the great ape trust. for more details, read here.
to view the sixteen paintings on display until november 25, click here.
to help, click here.
but by all means, go to zanzibar's and check out these paintings for yourself. they really are quite remarkable.

forget houdini . . .

guess who visited the orphanage this hallowe'en morning?
il pirata, marco pantani!!!
frankly, he looks pretty good, covered with peanut butter and log cabin.
he tasted so damned good it was scary!!!
have a creepy day, folks, from
the mostly reverend, and all the orphans everywhere!!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

oh, boy...THIS could be the start of something

just a funny little video, but, like the x prize, this is a foot in the door which will lead to my on-blog video interviews and talk show. enjoy this, and look forward to the world-wide debut of

"the front porch sermonettes."

Monday, October 29, 2007

brett [stolen from]

this has been a tough week. brett was killed by a garbage truck on monday. when i heard about it on tuesday morning, i felt like had been punched in the gut. i cried a lot tuesday. i met daniel that morning and we rode out to sauvie island. it was the most beautiful morning on the island. the fog was thick and the sunshine was breaking through above us as we rode talking about death and what it felt like to loose people out of the blue. riding along feeling the sun on my back, i felt like brett was there with me. later that day we all met where brett was killed to have a memorial. it was incredible to see how many people brett touched. i have lost 4 close friends to cycling accidents involving cars and every time it rips me apart, but somehow strengthens my feelings for the cycling community that we are all in. every one i have known who has passed on has a specific memory that will be with me forever. the first time i met chris lillig was when i was a junior in iowa bonking on a training ride when chris rolled up and gave me a push up the hill to catch the pack. his smile was infectious. blockhead was a big influence in my life. i remember long rides with dan talking about old punk music and general anti-establishment conversation. both chris and blockhead were super fast on a bike and represented the true hard working spirit of the cyclist. i met kristine when i was messengering in portland. she was a brilliant and kind person. she had a graphic arts background and she helped me with the first ira ryan cycles graphics. we were just getting to know each other when she was run over by a semi on the job in downtown portland. and now brett. this picture was taken on a ride in forest park with matt hall, brett and me. we happened on him on leif erikson on his single speed and he rode the rest of the ride with matt and me. his fierce spirit charged up the hill ahead of us. over the last couple days, i have talked to a number of people how recounted brett’s competitive drive that pushed him to race hard even when the rest of the riders have thrown in the towel. 2 laps to go and brett was still charging up the climb with a fire in his eyes. that is the spirit that lives on. what would brett do? ride your bike, feel the sun on your shoulders, the wind on you face, the leaves under your feet and don’t forget why you ride. this is how i honor the memory of brett, kristine, blockhead and chris.
Posted by iraryanbicycles

recent visitors to the sermonette

[this always just amazes the hell out of me, frankly]
just in the past twelve hours or so, today's sermonette has played host to visitors from such distant places as moscow city, russia; santiago, chile; hong kong; ulaanbaatar, mongolia; hylkje, hordaland, norway; uppsala, sweden; george town, the cayman islands [seeking a sermonette on acts 5--sorry!]; rome, italy; wahiawa, hawaii; regina, saskatchewan; valls, spain, plus many hundreds more from the north american and european continents.
some of these visitors are regular readers, others are new; some i could determine what led them here, and others are just here.
to all of you, thanks for stopping by. hope you enjoyed your stay. feel free to leave a comment or two.

porter wagoner

i grew up watching "the porter wagoner show" on television. okay, i hear you cynics. it's true, i was a big fan of "the bill anderson show," too. but porter, who made dolly parton a star, died yesterday, and i'm gonna miss him. like johnny cash before his recent death, porter just released one of his best-ever albums, "wagonmaster."
porter was genuine, and a genuinely funny guy, and had a style all his own. folks who were drawn to him tended to be like that, too: dolly parton and marty stuart just to mention a couple.
porter was a significant chunk of the foundation of american music. give his stuff a listen sometime.

a song for ira

Asked a guy what he wanted to be.
e said baby, can't you see?
I wanna be famous, a star on the scene
But you can do something in between
Maybe i can ride your bike?
I'm someone you'll really like.
Maybe i can ride your bike,
And maybe you'll love me.
I told that guy that my prospects were good.
And he said baby, it's understood
Working for peanuts is all very fine,
But you sure can show me a better time:
Maybe i can ride your bike?
I'm someone you'll really like.
Maybe i can ride your bike,
And maybe you'll love me.
ring-ring, ring-ring, yeah.
Maybe i can ride your bike?
I'm someone you'll really like.
Maybe i can ride your bike,
And maybe you'll love me.
I told that guy I could start right away
said listen, man, I've got something to say:
I got no bike, and it's breaking my heart
But I've got a skinsuit, and that's a start.
Maybe i can ride your bike?
I'm someone you'll really like.
Maybe i can ride your bike,
and maybe you'll love me.
ring-ring, ring-ring yeah!
ring-ring, ring-ring yeah!
ring-ring, ring-ring yeah!
ring-ring, ring-ring yeah!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

things i'm enjoying lately

traveling to races with chad [the dude got second!]
taking dmitri with me to races
getting these photos from fryguy. this shot sums up what cyclocross is all about. well done, stevie. i'm really digging your stuff. it gets better all the time. thanks.
here's a link to his stuff. here's another. get a cup of coffee and view them.

sizing up the competition...

what breed of liberal are you?
take this little quiz to find out.
[be prepared for the upcoming battle]
by the way, does anybody actually care about this?
[just trying to take the pulse of my readership]


but no broken bones....
Masters 50+ (60 min. + 2 laps)--
(-2 laps from lead group)
01. 1:04:03 - James Hopson, ICCC (Gold)
02. 1:04:18 - John Adamson, BikeTech Racing (Silver)
03. 1:06:07 - Phil Curran, DICE (Bronze)
(-3 laps from lead group)
04. 1:07:41 - Gerry Voelliger, DICE
(-4 laps from lead group)
05. 1:03:12 - Kim West,
06. 1:03:53 - Kathleen Porter, BikeTech Racing
07. 1:07:20 - Richard Gilmore, BikeTech Racing
[THAT sucks, let me tell ya. some gear selection issues will be resolved prior to the next set of races.]

Friday, October 26, 2007

wild claims recently overheard

claimed he was working... claimed they had nothing special planned...

claimed he was watching nascar.

an ode to lance

Oh, sweet Lance
you running, biking man
you thrill my little heart
as I'm your biggest fan
you went and got some cancer
and got better oh so soon
then won the tour de france
blazin' through like a typhoon

you then divorced your wife
who was always there for you
Soon you dumped that other girl
you must not pity any foo'
you sold your soul to nike
I once had so much faith in you but now?
Well, fuck you, Lance.
[NOTE: these kinds words were sent to me from a faithful reader, who received them from a friend who is [or used to be] in charge of the 10//2 website and who does all the marketing for Nike.]
we at the orphanage and today's sermonette wish him well in his future endeavours.

the one that DIDN'T get away

[a reader contribution, but with a twist!]
a regular reader and long-time cyclist writes:
Well our Monday night DMCC rides are over for the year, but not without an exciting conclusion this last Monday. So, Courtney and I headed out the Saylorville trail on Monday and had to turn the lights on, on the way out! The deer had already started occupying space on the trail (I think we saw somewhere in the neighborhood of a dozen).
Took our time returning, and stopped for some celebratory beer
(maybe we stopped twice). After seeing Courtney off, I took the long way home through the neighborhoods of West Des Moines started to get a little chilly so made for home. Just then I saw a furry flash on my right, my bike "pulsed a bit" and I continued on. But something didn't seem quite right, like something just happened and I missed it. I rode on not quite knowing what had just happened and half a block later turned around and went back. Now, my new Trek Cross bike has bladed spokes, with a reduced spoke count. A rabbit at speed is small enough to go through gaps in said wheels. Now at the time of "The pulse" I distinctly heard a slicing sound us usually only heard in horror movies and upon arrival at the scene, my fears were confirmed.
Mr/Mrs Rabbit made it half the way though,
part of Mr/Mrs Rabbit made it a quarter the way through and other parts like fur and the rabbit's liquid assets didn't make it though at all and decorated my bike and my tights.
No, still in shock at the whole thing -- I did not take a picture.
[NOTE: luggs didn't get a photo, but the orphans did--the rev]
I've hit animals before, ran over them, avoided them, ran from them
but can't say I've butchered one before Monday night. With all that said, I could have just as easily taken a trip over the bars and ended up with some time at the local hospital.
So I'm a lucky guy. Sorry Rabbit
That's my Halloween story and a Thanksgiving story too.

FLASH: this just in!!

after a great deal of searching, and an unbelievable vetting process,
it can now be revealed.
i know that i was mildly surprised: there were such contenders!!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

today's guest speaker: garrison keillor

What the Republican Revolution has wrought
It's the I Got Mine You Get Your Own party, marching under a Christian banner.
By Garrison Keillor
There is a natural division of labor in politics: The
Republicans fuss about the sanctity of marriage and getting God back in the schools and the Democrats about healthcare and the $8 billion that vanished in Iraq, and so far the Republicans are doing a better job. God is in the schools, the same as He is in Nebraska or even in Dallas, and marriage looks to be doing OK, since the White House is not in charge of it. Meanwhile, the Pentagon and the Justice Department are investigating fraud in Iraq, one grain of sand at a time, and we are likely to have answers in a decade or two.
I suppose that $8 billion is not so much considering that the war will cost $200 billion this year alone, and yet one is curious to know why the G-men can't find out where it went, at a time when the Current Occupant is so very concerned about keeping medical benefits away from undeserving children. Hundreds of millions paid to the gunslingers of Blackwater, but an American family with a seriously ill child has to tap-dance backward through a gantlet of government forms to prove they really, really, really are desperate.
As the old adage says, the little thieves get hung and the big thieves get richer and richer. When it comes to larceny, it pays to be ambitious.
If you were looking for a political platform, God and
marriage would be a good bet, sort of like promising to make the sun rise. A part-time job with time left over to supervise the moon and the stars. It is so much more satisfying than the dreary business of investigating what happened to those suitcases full of bricks of $100 bills in Iraq during the Bremer years and tracking down the good Republicans who served over there -- the young folks with no prior experience in accounting or finance who were put in charge of the stock exchange and the national budget.
I heard a man on the radio the other day who was baying about Sen. Clinton's healthcare plan and at one point, in shock and dismay, he said, "This is taking away from those who have and giving to those who do not -- in other words, socialism." He sounded truly offended. And this is what the Republican Revolution has brought us to: No longer is there a consensus on taxation according to ability to pay. No longer agreement that it is in the self-interest of the well-off to promote a stable society by securing the safety net. It's the I Got Mine You Get Your Own party, marching under a Christian banner. But Republicans are starting to realize that if you claim to govern by divine inspiration, the voters will hold you to a higher standard. You can't throw $8 billion down a rathole and expect us all to forget about this.
Don't get me wrong. Marriage is a good thing. But as for the sanctity of it, you shouldn't look too closely. Every marriage has its profane moments, especially when children get mixed up in it, which so often happens.
There is yelling and weeping involved and door slamming and a great deal of bad poetry ("My life is a vortex of darkness because/ You never loved me,/ No, I was only/ An object of your wrath,/ Bad daddy") and all due to the horrors of
The childless couples I know seem smooth and easy together, working their old comedy routines, and the fruitful couples seem distracted as if expecting a phone call from the county jail. Childless couples don't go through this. They don't have to yell upstairs and say, "If I don't see you doing your homework in five minutes, I am going to yell and shriek and do such irrational things that they will put me into residential treatment and you will have to fix your own meals and do your own laundry."
The child has created a shrine to herself on Facebook and has a list of a thousand friends but not much is actually taking place underneath that hairdo. Just like with the Current Occupant, who represents them very well. He is a relaxed, easygoing, self-accepting guy whose old retainers love him for his self-effacing modesty, a wonderful trait, but when you are incompetent, it is not so wonderful as, say, a little more intelligence might be. He is heading for the short bus of history where Earl Butz and Spiro Agnew ride. Where are his parents? Why don't they yell at him?
© 2007 by Garrison Keillor. All rights reserved.

thousands die while cheney sleeps!

in addition to being a manical power-monger,
the vice president also is narcoleptic!
lord, why hast thou left me to suffer thus?
man, it's not like i don't suffer enough from this bizarre and unpredictable sleep disorder, but now i find out that cheney has it, too?
cheney nodded off yessterday during a white house meeting with chinese president hu. media chum abc news is attempting to cover THAT up, but there is video proof that he did it back when rumsfeld was stalking the white house.
as i know all too well, cheney's denial of nodding off is classic narcoleptic symptomology. dick, take it from me, you have narcolepsy. admit it, see a sleep specialist, and get on the medication. you'll be a much happier person, and the rest of the world will be better for it.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

a message from jack carter

Almost 30 years ago, Birch Bayh and Mo Udall were considered the favorites for the Democratic Party nomination for President. With Iowa three months away, I recall many pundits asking which of these two candidates would survive to face Gerald Ford in the general election.
But Iowans went to their caucuses anyway. And come caucus day, the media prognostications of the previous few months were irrelevant. The hyperbole surrounding the campaigns was inconsequential. It was caucus day, and Iowans were not going to be told what to do -
- they were going to choose for themselves.
They chose a little-known Governor from Georgia, my father, Jimmy Carter. Dad's surprising showing in the caucuses catapulted him from long-shot to the White House. And it was all because of people like you.
Now, I am watching history repeat itself. A couple of candidates for the Democratic Party have raised incredible sums of money. The national media is ready to call the election. The pundits say the front-runners are already running general election campaigns.
Click here to contribute to Joe Biden today
and make history repeat itself.
Yet we are still months away from the caucuses.
The media doesn't pick the President.
The pundits don't get to decide the Democratic Party nominee.
Iowans will make that choice for themselves, just as they did in 1976. And I believe that Iowans will pick Joe Biden for President.
I have known Joe for more than 30 years. He is experienced, knowledgeable, and charming. He projects serious proposals into the debate on the many issues that are critical to the world today.
I am proud to support a candidate who can win in 2008. I am proud to support a candidate who does not suffer from lack of experience or from high negatives. Most of all, I am proud to support a great person, a great supporter of my father's, and a true friend.
You may have noticed that, while Joe has less money on hand than some of the other candidates, the momentum is beginning to turn in Joe's direction. Many Iowans who have met with all the candidates are rushing to endorse Joe Biden. The other candidates are practically falling all over each other to endorse Joe's plan for Iraq.
We can keep the momentum going.
Joe needs to raise $500,000 by November 16
so that he can continue his march to Pennsylvania Avenue.
Will you join us?
Click here to contribute to Joe Biden today.
With your help, Iowa in 2008 will once again surprise the nation and launch a great man to the White House.
Thank you,
Jack Carter, Nevada
Visit Make a contribution

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

the guy is working hard to get my support

how can you argue when he makes such a heart-felt promise?

why we need to be careful

USF captain killed in traffic accident
The University of South Florida Cycling Team's co-founder, Joshua Kuck, was killed in a traffic accident on the weekend while taking part in the Hilly Hundred. Investigators believe the 22 year-old ran through a stop sign during the event, organised by the Tampa Bay Freewheelers cycling club, and was hit by a pickup truck.
"Josh was instrumental in the formation of the cycling team, and most likely the team would not exist at all if it were not for him," read a statement on the team's website, "In addition, Josh brought life to the team with his outgoing and positive attitude. The team deeply mourns his loss and it will take a great deal of time for the team to recover emotionally."
this isn't a lesson we need to experience to understand.--the rev

Monday, October 22, 2007

coming november 2

hoyt sherman auditorium, 700 pm.
reserved seating, $32.50
grace potter and the nocturnals open.
prepare to be blown away, kiddies.
click here for mule tunes,
click here for grace potter music.
arrive early -- leave late

on any sunday

and to think that i saw it near mulberry street
look closely, and who do you see?
no, closer than THAT!
[click on photo for larger view]
need a hint? look here, closely...

he learned from racing in iowa, no doubt

life in the pro peloton
Steve Tilford (KCCX / Verge / Erickson) and Adam Myerson (Nerac Pro Cycling) battled it out all day. Eventually an elbow was thrown and heated words were exchanged.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

the gayest nba team?

according to j.k.rowling, it's the washington wizards:
"d. fell in love with g.--a bad wizard he defeated long ago,
and that added to his horror when g. showed himself to be what he was."

how to party with greyhounds

okay, so i'm down on costuming your dogs, but hounds who love to party?
well, that's another matter!
this was a party this week for three siblings,
who hadn't seen each other in three years.

gogh, on the right, celebrated his 5th birthday with his family. here, he shares a cupcake with his sister, star.

stars smiles, having made off with the cupcake. these dogs actually like wearing birthday hats. however, don't ask them to sing "happy birthday."

Friday, October 19, 2007

monkey business or ape art?

[cool show alert, folks!]

A collection of paintings from residents of Great Ape Trust of Iowa
will be featured in the Apes Helping Apes inaugural exhibit
at Zanzibar's Coffee Adventures beginning October 22.
All proceeds go to great ape conservation in the wild.
Zanzibar's Coffee Adventures
2723 Ingersoll Avenue
Des Moines
October 22 to November 25
Mon-Thurs: 7am to 9pm
Fri-Sat: 7am to 11pm
Sun: 8am to 6pm
To view the Apes Helping Apes 2007 collection
and the stories behind the paintings,
Great Ape Trust of Iowa:
Studies the behavior and intelligence of great apes
Provides sanctuary and an honorable life for great apes
Advances conservation of great apes
Provides unique educational experiences about great apes
Please make sure that you add
to your address book
to ensure delivery of email communications from Great Ape Trust.
Great Ape Trust of Iowa
4200 SE 44th Avenue
Des Moines, IA, 50320, U.S.A.
Copyright 2006 Great Ape Trust of Iowa
other things: this is troubling,
this is really sad and senseless [give his music a listen],
and this provides background to the senselessness.

we call them man's best friends, but we do this?

i mean, sure this is cute and all,
but do any of these animals really look happy?
i just want to scream...
except for these little dogs...
they seem bred for this abuse.
[but still with the sad expression, no?]

cruelty to animals, part 2

funny, but mean
what kind of cat would stand for this?
my dogs like to play.
hmmm. i rarely feel sorry for these dogs, but now i do.
i always felt sorry for the wolfman in the original movie, too.

cruelty to animals, part 3

this guy looks even sadder than usual.
no wonder we have fat dogs in this country.
so MANY things wrong here.
eight puppies, zero wagging puppy tails
this really offends me. even now, this grey maintains her dignity.
i hope it pisses on her owner's bed tonight.