Category: life

On midlife crises or feeling my mortality…. again.

I think about my mortality a lot. This has been a recent development – within the last 2-3 years anyway. I thought it was just me being a morbid person but maybe I’m experiencing my midlife crisis? Instead of buying a convertible sports car and banging the hottie at work I’m buying bicycles and sensing the end? Maybe.

As cliché as it sounds, time really does speed up the older I get. It really seems to be flying by to me now… it seems like just a few weeks ago, I was biking to work with an ice beard but that was 5 months ago. Weeks zoom by and days barely register. I worry that my time is going to zip past before I get to do all the things I want.

Another recent development is that perhaps these days I’m living right now are the best days of my life. Don’t get me wrong… my life is actually pretty good right now. I ride a bike to work nearly every day. I feel great and I’m healthy. Jen is healthy and our life is relatively worry free but as a younger person in my 20’s and 30’s, I always thought that the best was yet to come. I console myself by believing there are lots of people in their 50’s and 60’s thinking “Oh to be 40 again!”

Feeling like my time is limited and precious, I’ve started thinking seriously about a bicycle tour across the US… it’ll happen within the next two to three years. I know I can do the ride, physically but I just have to plan the financial side of things.

Anyway, O’Brother’s music sounds like I feel inside.

Friday bike and thangs 04/25/14

Quick hits

  • I’ve had bicycle touring on my brain lately and the photo below really appeals to me.
  • The weather has been great and my miles on the bike (300 miles in April so far) and my happiness levels have been up because of it.
  • I’m participating in the National Bike Challenge. If you ride a bicycle, you should too.
  • I’ve started using Strava to record my rides. Let’s be friends.
Photo by Heather McGrath
Photo by Heather McGrath

A driver misjudged our speeds and failed to correctly anticipate the turn in. Being a gentleman, I allowed the lady to go ahead of course.

Spring ponderings

As I was riding my bike home from work yesterday, I realized that this is actually a really good phase of my life.

If I examine my feelings I think I have this expectation that life isn’t good until every little problem is fixed, every feeling resolved, all the money saved, in the perfect house, in a specific situation; then I’ll have made it!

The fact of the matter is, I’m surrounded by great friends, I ride a bicycle to work, I like my job and I feel appreciated and challenged in my work. My loved ones are all in good health and they’re accessible.

I actually think that I’ll look back on this time in my life very fondly. I just have to stop rushing into the desired perfect future that might not ever happen and enjoy the present more – or so it seemed as I was riding home on a wonderful spring afternoon, sweating and breathing deep.

Thoughts on clean sheets

I love clean sheets. I also love the way the carpet looks right after vacuuming. I love the way the kitchen looks when all of the dishes are put away, everything is clean; my world seems in order. I love when all of the clothes are clean and everything is put away. I think I’m just one impulse away from spending a Sunday afternoon of doing chores in the buff because at the end, I’ll sit perfectly still in my chair and I’ll know that my universe is perfectly in order.

An open letter to Jen Harley on this Valentine’s Day

To My Dearest Jen-

I love you. I dedicate this song to you on this Valentine’s Day because you’re the love of my life.

Goof balls being goofy
We’ve been through so much this past year and it feels like we’re closer and more in love than ever. If we can do cancer together, we can do anything together.


2013-06-08 at 19.41.43
I will always love you and be at your side so please never stop loving me the way you do.
You're so damn sexy
Never stop being you baby. You’re sexy, bubbly, open, kind and loving. You’re also brave, perpetually happy and eternally optimistic.
I love you Jen Harley
Thanks for being my kind of weird. Can we get tattoos, go on adventures and ride bikes together forever? You’re my best friend, my soul mate and I will love you until the end of our lives.

I love you.

Good Riddance 2013

This has been the hardest and most stressful year of my life. I’m so glad 2013 is over; good riddance.

I’m not going to do resolutions this year other than to say I want to do no harm, I want to be kind to people, I want to bike, run and hike, I want to learn new things, go see new places and have new experiences.

I read books

Goodreads says I read 28 books.

I blogged stuff

The blog got 3,761 hits in 2013.

I moved my body

According to RunKeeper, I ran 145 miles, walked 35 miles, biked 932 miles, and hiked 31 miles in 2013.

I listened to music.




Photo year in review

2013-01-11 at 15.06.53
January: Totaled Jeep gets hauled off for scrap
2013-01-20 at 15.10.31
January: Jen and I were invited to hang at a cabin near the Smokies by our friend David.
2013-02-01 at 11.29.46
February: Carter! Snow!
Mike at the Run for Adoption 5k
March: I ran a 5k!
2013-03-03 at 16.17.06
March: This guy…
2013-03-08 at 15.38.43
March: Butch Walker! First!
After. Anybody have a cigarette? :p
April: Omgerd! Anerther furve k!
Jens birthday.
2013-05-04 at 11.56.00
May: I drank tea!
2013-06-22 at 06.02.40
June: I went hiking!
2013-06-26 at 17.41.14
June: And the Alamo!
2013-07-04 at 20.01.14
July: South Haven
2013-07-06 at 20.27.41
July: Pretty Lake
2013-07-12 at 07.19.39
July: Surgery
2013-08-25 at 12.58.06
August: Got my bike!
August: Chemo started
Carter's visit 9/29
September: Carter came to visit us in Nashville
Carter and Mimi at breakfast
September: …and asked lots of questions
Carter's visit to the Nashville zoo!
September: …and really liked the zoo!
Bike selfie!
October: I biked…
October: …and explored
Ms Jen hooked up to her machine.
October: ..and more chemo
November: I went camping for the first time ever.
Biking around Nashville.
November: and biked around Nashville more.
The bike ride in this morning was pretty rewarding.
November: This happened too.
Tommy's graduation
December: My brother graduated from TTU.
December: Last chemo treatment!
December: Christmas!

On friendships

It’s hard for a cisnormative, adult male to make new friends. I’m not sure why that is but I feel like I struggle to find what I consider to be my tribe. Where is the tribe for progressive, atheist, secular humanist, tattoo collecting, cycling, backpacking/hiking, introspective, reading, geeky people?

I read an article somewhere about introverts and while I don’t consider myself an introvert exactly, what the article said about friends and friendship resonated with me. It said that introverts prefer fewer close friends to many casual friends and I found myself nodding in agreement as I read the article.

If there is a friendship scale from 1 to 10 with 1 being wasn’t that guy’s name Joe? and 10 being dude, can you help me move this dead body?, I’d say I have a good core circle of friends in the 5 range and a couple other circles in the 3-4 range. My single 8+ friend lives far away and we rarely get to hang. If I could just elevate my core group of 5 range friends to the 7 range, that’d be awesome. Instead, I recently realized that somebody that I thought of as a 7 range friend probably only considers me as a 4 range friend. Bummer.

Is it inappropriate to just inform somebody that you’d like to be BFF’s? I guess I just invite people to do things? Where is the manual or Wikipedia article on how to make new BFF’s? Would it be weird to create an OKC profile searching for friends only? :/

Yours truly,

Awkwardly Searching

Dorking around with Nashville transit

Anybody who knows me knows that I’m into transit and I want to bike around and all those hippie things that hippies do. Be green, save the earth, carbon foot prints etc. I’ve always been into the idea of transit and urban biking at least. I’ve often wondered how different the idea and reality is.

Since we’ve moved to Nashville, I’ve had a few opportunities to experiment with the Nashville MTA and so far the experience hasn’t been terrible.

Our friends organize a happy hour thing (HOH Nation) every Friday night so I thought that would be a great reason to ride the bus down into the city.

Our first experience didn’t start out so great as we had to wait nearly 40 minutes for the bus to come. I have no idea what the hold up was but the rest of the experience was fine.

The second experience was today and was much better. We only had to wait 8 minutes! According to the bus schedule, the bus comes by every 20 minutes so we just lucked up there. The ride down to mid-town seemed pretty quick tho I didn’t think to time it. We caught the last bus heading back at 9:58pm and it was exactly 20 minutes later that we were stepping off the bus. According to Waze, it would take us 17 minutes to drive to Winners. That’s not bad for the bus!

Admittedly, Winners is on the same bus line as our apartment so it’s a simple, straight shot and we don’t have to transfer. Tomorrow we’re going to take the bus to the Tomato Arts Festival and we plan to bus… with the kids and we’ll have to transfer. This will be a more robust test.

Once we learn the schedule of the bus, we can time our arrival at the at the stop better as to minimize the waiting.

One thing I don’t like is the buses stop running kind of early. 10pm isn’t that late for a Friday night so we would have to get a taxi home or call Taxi Tyler for a pick up if we wanted to stay later. They stop running even earlier on the weekends. Something like 7pm according to the printed schedule. Bummer. Another thing I’m not too fond of is the bus stop situation. The two in front of our apartment complex are just small blue signs on posts. The one across the street barely has any room to stand to cross the street back to the apartment nor is there a marked pedestrian cross walk. It’s seems unsafe to cross the road there, especially after 10pm at night.

So far the results are mixed tho overall I’m positive on the experiences. I can’t wait to get my bike.

Trying to buy a bike, help me decide

So, I want to commute to work and bike around Nashville. To get the most bang for my buck, I’ve been cruising Craigslist for something used. Here are the candidates, in no particular order:

  1. Trek 7.2 fx road hybrid (another one here)
  2. NEW! TREK 7.4 FX BIKE
  3. Road Bike, TREK
  4. trek 1.1

In the perfect world, I’d like to get a road bike with flat handle bars. I’m still tempted to walk into a bike shop and just let them sell me something too.