19 April 2007

Telling stories with photos

First... bike saga might, FINALLY, be coming to an end. Seems that everything about this bike has just led from one problem to another. I hope it's a great as everyone clamims Black Sheep to be. In any case, I now have a non-functioning tracking number and I have a ship date. Add to that the guy that it's shipping to now seems to be on vacation. Ugh! At this point, my guess is that it's now in Germany sitting safely at it's next-to-end location and I can't get to it.

These are updated posts from my My(Wasted)Space page. Thought that I'd share them here for you guys to update you on our recent goings on......

Bits & pieces of stuff going on last week and this.

Here's a link to my Flickr page where I've uploaded a few new pics. I'll post a few of my favs here. Wunnspeed on Flickr

A good one of Kera -
Kera Smirk - Berlin

Kera being serious as usual -
Kera making faces
RottenMac loaned me his Karate Monkey to help me retain sanity. Here it is with a few of my parts on it -
Christians Karate Monkey

Kera's Retrotec - rolling art! -
Keras Retrotec

Hohenschwangau & Neuschwanstein in the same photo from the South end of Alpsee -

Slippery frogs? A sign that's south of town we saw on our ride last weekend -
Slippery Frogs Sign


I finished Berlitz training this past Tuesday. Yes, I learned a lot. Yes, it was necessary. No, I'm not cut out to be trapped in a stuffy room for 9 hours a day with little freedom to go outside. No, I don't live in the 'real' world anymore. I've adapted all too well to the life of a 'trailing spouse' & freelance English teacher. Most of my days consist of going to a class in the morning, teaching, going home for lunch and then rinse repeat of the morning. Throw in some grocery shopping, a ride here and there, cleaning house, making sock monsters, playing on the computer and a little more and you get the idea of how my days play out.

Thanks to Rottenmac for loaning me the Karate Monkey. It's been great being on a singlespeed again. Not only that, it again makes me wonder why anyone wouldn't like 29'ers. Damn, these things roll and do everything better, in my opinion, than a 'baby-wheeler'. My buddy Cotter loaned me his singlespeed one time way back when for a trip to Arizona. I'll never forget it. One of my favorite trips ever. Thanks guys!



Berlin... a way cool city that, in a lot of ways, reminded me of Kansas City and a lot of New York. In any case, a super flat city that's incredibly spread out compared to Munich. It's also a city that has a lot of open space and it's amazingly flat. The art scenes, music scenes and fixie culture seem to be very alive and well there.

Oh the hotel we stayed in was really cool (Propeller Island). The rooms as I'd pointed out before were all different. Strangely enough, no one running around in black leather. Just us 'normal' folks roaming about at breakfast and such. I've got a few pics that I need to upload so you can see more of our room. I'll tell you more when I post those. O.K.

See the bottom of this post for a few of our pics from Berlin. Also, check my Flickr page

What else? We ate some awesome Mexican food at Dolores after having done the Fat Tire Bike Tour and then cruising around town a bit. We also hit the Keirin Shop where I picked up a Brooklyn cycling hat. Check out the one on the top of the pic. Just like the one that I bought.

Perfect Trail Truck

Saw the above truck and lusted after it as it's the perfect trail building vehicle. Also, it'd be fun to pull up next to a Hummer and say whatcha driven there wannabe?

A cool pic of the Kera...

Kera On S-Bahn Platform - Berlin

A good bit of Graf. art


Me out riding the 'Evil' 26" wheeled thing a week or so ago.

Me, myself & I - Front

Found out that my Curtlo has been powdercoated but the paint guys didn't like the coating and had to reorder new powder. That's partly why it's taken 6 months for that repair as well. It's still not done. Wish I had it for this weekends (Garda marathon). As it is, it looks as though I'll be riding Kera's Retrotec. Not that riding it is a sacrifice, for me... it's a beautiful bike. Just wish I had my own. It's a teddy bear security blanket sort of thing I guess.

08 April 2007

Bag Crazy

Since Mike usually takes care of typing up our blog posts I figured that I should make a report to all of our friends about what has been taking up big chunks of my spare time lately. For those of you out there who have seen me in Obsessed Mode before you can probably imagine how things have been around here. I've been a tad bit focused on messenger bags..... to put it mildly.

The good news is that I've come a long way already. I made a couple of "prototype" bags and then made one for a friend. Here's a picture of Sabine's bag.#4 - Folder Bag outside

And a picture of the bag I made for myself with the same idea for an angled accent on the flap. The Best One Yet

I learn something new on each one and they are getting better all of the time. I just finished a bag for Mikey yesterday that is the latest and greatest. He picked out the size, colors, pockets, straps, flap design, etc. Well..... I actually kind of told him what his decision was going to be on the flap design-- but I suppose that he officially had veto power on that too.

Mikey's bagSingle speed cogopenInside... orange

The pictures above are all messenger type bags, but I've done a couple of purse sized bags too. Those actually worked out pretty well.

Have done all of the sewing on my little Pfaff Hobbymatic. It is a surprisingly strong little guy. There are times when all of those layers really push it past its maximum capacity though. The great news is that I just picked up an industrial machine on Friday. It is on indefinite loan from Andrea, and I'm excited to try to figure out how to use it. It will hopefully go through layers a whole lot more easily. NewMachine

So... the idea is that I would like to start making custom bags for whoever would like to order them. I have been working with my friend Sara, and we have a name for our little enterprise: SpoK Bags. Sara has designed a logo for us and we're trying to get labels made. It's just a matter of figuring out which place has the best prices, quality, etc. After that we will be in business.

I won't pester everyone with the weekly update on the bag project-- I understand that others don't find the details of bag straps as fascinating as I do. If you are interested in watching the developments here is the link to my flickr site. I post most of the new stuff there as it comes along. If you are interested in ordering a bag just shoot me an e-mail and we can work out the details.

Hope that this message finds everyone well. Happy Easter.

Take care,

07 April 2007

Bad Brother!

Yes, first off... I'm a bad brother. I forgot (kind of) to tell my sister Happy Birthday last month. Her birthday is St. Patricks day. Kera and I actually went to an Irish bar the night before and I mentioned that I needed to send her an email or an ecard before we left the next morning on our vacation in Mallorca.

So... just so that she knows I thought about it and then forgot. Also, so that I don't forget my brothers birthday that falls on April 13th, I'll cover the bases now.



O.K., what next?

Next... we didn't take a single pic while on vacation in Mallorca. Luckily, Hattem did. Something like 192 to be exact. Check 'em out if you like. I posted a couple here to save some of you the trouble. For the gluttons... Here you go.

By the way, we remedied the lack of a small camera problem and have since purchased a Canon IXUS 850. It's a great little thing. We've already taken a bunch of pics with it. See below or check out our Flickr Page

Mmmm... drinks!
Lunch. Bavarian style

Still no bike or bikes. Might be looking in to buying or building Kera a new commuter bike for her soon to be lengthened trip to work. The thought is that they'll be moving her office out to the 'campus' that SwissRE has a bit further from our place. Then, we might look in to cyclocross bikes which would seem to be the perfect bicycle for use in this part of the world.

Next weekend we're off to Berlin. We're staying in a really curious hotel called the Propeller Island. The link is to the room that we're staying in. It's called Grandma's. Looks kinda cool. Check out the rest of the place. The story is kind of intersting. A hotel all designed by one artist.