Wednesday, May 30, 2007


MTB HotCup 2007 NCK Grib Skov (Nødebo)

I didn't come last!


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Tuesday, May 22, 2007


A car crash I found amusing

On my cycle commute in to work this morning at one point the kerb protecting the cycle path stops and the road joins for cars turning right. Well, a car overtook and cut in sharply causing me to brake suddenly. The car driver then decided they didn't want to turn right but go straight on and stopped on the zebra crossing just after the lights.

As the lights were red I thought I might inquire as to the drivers mental state and if they had some mechanical or electrical issues preventing the correct operation of brakes and indicators.

They assured me they were prefectly compos mentis and there was nothing wrong with their vehicle.

I suggested they calm down a little as Copenhagen is not the sort of place to go driving too fast, considering the traffic and all the cyclists. With a cheery waves we both continued on our journeys.

A little further on I heard a dull thud and saw the driver I had recently conversed with had decided that the driver of a dump truck was someone else they would wish to strike up a conversation with. Unfortunately the dump truck was not quite as quick as myself and duly rolled over the front of the car.

I pulled up to watch the dump truck driver, a couple of bin men who'd been surfing on the back, but were now picking themselves up from being unceremoniously dumped in the road, and car driver all arguing noisily with each other. It was something about mental state, brakes, and indicators.

"Keep it down." I asked, "Some people are trying to sleep here" and everyone gave each other cheery waves, although one of the bin men did more appear to be throwing a left hook at the car driver rather than waving.


Saturday, May 19, 2007


Chicken Little

One day the first grade teacher was reading the story of Chicken Little to her class. She came to the part of the story where Chicken Little tried to warn the farmer. She read, ".... and so Chicken Little went up to the farmer and said, 'The sky is falling, the sky is falling!' ".
The teacher paused then asked the class, "And what do you think that farmer said?".
One little girl raised her hand and said, "I think he said: "Holy Shit! A talking chicken!".
The teacher was unable to teach for the next 10 minutes.



Thought for today

A community is not a community of disembodied spoken statements, in part because the most important aspect of the communication that people have is emotional, and one often communicates emotion not in terms of the text but as a subtext. The physical body is not irrelevant to a human community. The emotional subtext of human communication is crucial to human thought. It isn't a footnote. Too many computer scientists don't understand this.

Friday, May 18, 2007


How to move a pie

Master Kangan pointed to the mountain and said to Threadi: "You speak of mind over matter -- then let's see you move Miss Pie"

Wordlessly the young disciple ate the pie.

The Master smiled as Threadi slapped him up the side of the head. "You had to use your hands."

Silently Threadi closed his mouth.

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How do you move Mt. Fuji?

Master Kangan pointed to the mountain and said to Daichi: "You speak of mind over matter -- then let's see you move Mt. Fuji."

Wordlessly the young disciple pulled the shoji screen across their view.

The Master smiled as Daichi slapped him up the side of the head. "You had to use your hands."

Silently Daichi closed his eyes.

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Thursday, May 17, 2007


Darwins' M&Ms

Whenever I get a package of plain M&Ms, I make it my duty to continue the strength and robustness of the candy as a species.  To this end, I hold M&M duels.

Taking two candies between my thumb and forefinger, I apply pressure, squeezing them together until one of them cracks and splinters. That is the "loser," and I eat the inferior one immediately. The winner gets to go another round.

I have found that, in general, the brown and red M&Ms are tougher, and the newer blue ones are genetically inferior. I have hypothesized that the blue M&Ms as a race cannot survive long in the intense theater of competition that is the modern candy and snack-food world.

Occasionally I will get a mutation, a candy that is misshapen, or pointier, or flatter than the rest. Almost invariably this proves to be a weakness, but on very rare occasions it gives the candy extra strength. In this way, the species continues to adapt to its environment.

When I reach the end of the pack, I am left with one M&M, the strongest of the herd. Since it would make no sense to eat this one as well, I pack it neatly in an envelope and send it to M&M Mars, A Division of Mars, Inc., Hackettstown, NJ 17840-1503 U.S.A., along with a 3x5 card reading, "Please use this M&M for breeding purposes."

This week they wrote back to thank me, and sent me a coupon for a free 1/2 pound bag of plain M&Ms. I consider this "grant money." I have set aside the weekend for a grand tournament. From a field of hundreds, we will discover the True Champion.

There can be only one.

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Wednesday, May 16, 2007



New record for the commute to this client. It even felt blooming fast.


Wednesday, May 09, 2007


It's Like Deja-Vous All Over Again

I'm sure I've had an incident like this happen to me before.

I stop at the lights beside another cyclist and start chatting to them in English.

Then into the conversation comes the question: "How did you know I was English?"

"You're wearing a Manchester United football shirt," I reply.

"Yes, but, lots of people all over the world wear them!" Comes the objection.

"Yet yours has a xxx stain on it..."


Tuesday, May 08, 2007


I just don't believe it

Just saw a Porsche turning a corner from the lights in a 50 kph zone lose it. Back end stepped out and they went all the way to 90 degrees, (sideways,) which considering they were doing a right turn is effectively a 180, before starting to sort themselves out. OK the roads are a little wet, yet I just don't believe it: how bad a driver do you have to be?

Seeing the incident described reminds me that the 'Choose ESC!' campaign starts today. Apparently Denmark have the highest, 76%, of new cars sold fitted with Electronic Stability Control as standard. Guess the buyer of the car above skimped on that option!



Feeling smug

It was raining when I got ready to cycle to work, not wanting to get wet thought I might see what the rain was doing on the DMI weather radar. This presents a little animation showing the clouds for the last 50 minutes. As I looked at the animation I thought of a cunning plan. Not as a cunning as a fox who's just been appointed Professor of Cunning at Oxford University, but something I considered of some small utility. Now it appeared the clouds were going in the general direction to work, and that there was to be a break in the clouds in a few minutes, (a break in the clouds therefore meaning no rain,) but the clouds were taking 50 minutes to travel my commute. Darn, on a good day I could do it, but I'd better use the bike with mud-guards, and if I were to get caught by the lights and slower traffic on the cycle path I'd end up wet, so reckoned that an extra 10 minutes had to be found somewhere. Looking at the animation, a eureka moment, I noticed the gap between one set of clouds and the next was 10 minutes! If I set off just as the rain stopped, and kept my average speed above 30 kph then I'd be safely inside the rain free box all the way to work.

And it worked, just as I locked my bicycle in the cycle shed the heavens opened, 59 minutes 26 seconds according to the cycle-computer, but I was dry, and feeling rather smug about it.


Monday, May 07, 2007


Two fatties and a drunk

Cycling through Glostrup, like I would rather not, a drunk bounced off me. What is it with that 1km stretch in Glostrup: interminable roadworks, sudden appearance of spoke breaking holes in the road, moving patches of broken glass, and now drunks... Why me? Maybe said drunk thought I looked like a large solid thing to lean up against.

But not as large as the next cycle-path hazard: two fatties stood in the way. Now if they were side by side I could of squeezed through, but one was slightly behind the other, thereby blocking the whole path. It looked like they were attempting to cross the road, a dual-carriage way, at rush-hour, and not something I would attempt at that point. So I slows down to give them chance to go, and slows down, and slower, and slower, until I stop about a meter away.

"Excuse me," I ask in my usual cheery way.

"It's not a race track you know!" comes a rather sharp reply.

"Oh, I see," I answer with surprise, "but it is a cycle-path," I add, as I push up onto the pavement to go around.

At a set of traffic lights a little further on I stop and the sound of a bicycle bell causes me to look back. There they are, still stood there, and watch as another cyclist rides up onto the pavement to get around them with lots of unintelligible shouting.

For the life of me I don't know what that was all about.

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Saturday, May 05, 2007


A thought on Zen

Zen is total bullshit. When you realize that fact, you have mastered Zen.

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Thursday, May 03, 2007


Pedestrians and Car drivers

There I am on my bicycle waiting at a red light when a lady pedestrian runs out when the little red man is lit, promptly causing a taxi to do an emergency stop. The taxi just knocks her slightly. She bounces off the bonnet and continues to run across the road. Taxi driver shouts something, but she carries on. He waits a moment and then, with a shrug, drives on.

A chap on another bicycle by the side of me mutters something. I didn't catch what he said, so I smile politely.

The lady then runs out into the road, again, this time down the side of some parked cars. Chap besides me calls to her, incredulously, "Skal du kører bil os?" (You're allowed to drive a car?)

She looks back down the road at us with a withering look whilst opening the drivers side door, and gets in.

"Hold da kæft!" (WTF!) my fellow cyclist exclaims.

I nearly fall over laughing so much.

Later, I relate this story to some of my Danish co-workers, "Nørrebro" one of them comments, others nod sagely at this.

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MTB HotCup 2007 PMC Asserbo plantage (Tisvilde)

Second round of the MTB HotCup 2007 organised by the Police Mountain Bike Club (PMC) and held at the Asserbo plantage. Managed to complete 3 circuits! Yippee for me!

My full suspension mountain bike is now well and truely buggered so I am in the market for a new one. There again it was past it a few years ago and I had been using it as my 'ice bike', i.e. put some Nokian winter tires on: the ones with the lovely metal studs. Used it when it was too icy to ride any other bike, and crash into cars that cut me up. One gets to appreciate the sublime beauty inherent to the curvy scratches carbide tipped bicycle tyre studs make to a car that cuts you up. Also upped the gears so as to reduce the torque to prevent slippage. But I digress. For this race I decided I ought to be shod in a lovely fat pair of Nobby Nics. Now the rear tire catchs a little on the front deraileur, and due to a slight buckle in that wheel, the rear subframe too. What with the higher gearing, it doesn't go quite low enough to let me climb anything. Ho, hum. Bad workman blames his tools and all that. Yet using a chisel as a screwdriver isn't doing to do anyone any good.

Talking of climbing: they said, on the website description of the course, that if your technique was good enough then the whole course is rideable. Well, exsqueeze me, but there was something that looked distinctly like a set of stairs on one part of the circuit, and really flipping steep ones at that!

Guess I shall have to practice my technique then. ;-)

At one point I found a young lady who had fallen. She was stuck in a very muddy ditch all twisted round so couldn't get her foot out from the pedals, no twist left you see. Everyone else seemed to be just riding past. So I helped her up. My good deed for the day. Just an aging boy scout after all.

On my last round, when I was all on my very lonesome, everyone else either having finished or given up, I was startled by a large (and what appeared feral at the time, honest,) brown poodle crashing through the undergrowth towards me. Luckily it stopped. The noise it made before stopping improved my cadence no end. Up that hill!

My GPS track is pretty pants, looks like the receiver couldn't get a proper signal, but you can get the idea of the route.

The race results, I didn't come last!

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