BrammoBlog: Sunday was a GREAT day for Balloons in New Mexico

16 10 2012

Blog 53: A mostly non-Brammo blog today. But Sunday was just too lovely not to share.

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So Sunday was the last day of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Β And the weather was perfect for ballooning. Low winds, cool air and clear skies. AND it was the same down in Roswell, New Mexico where Felix Baumgartner was attempting to take a balloon up high enough to see the curvature of the Earth. And then jump out of that balloon. Crazy stuff.

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Linkage:

http://www.balloonfiesta.com

The World’s Premiere Balloon Event…it says so right on the web page…and is true. Crazy number and styles of balloons.

and

http://www.redbullstratos.com/the-team/felix-baumgartner/

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I love this image

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And of course I did poke a bit of fun about his upcoming jump in a blog last week…

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And while I don’t usually take requests, Brammofan sent me an image of Mr Baumgartner making his historic landing (and landed it perfectly! the only time I sky dived I was in a tandem and still ended up on my arse). He said I should “Brammo it up”…and how could I resist.

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I find it rather impressive that Brammo just happened to have an Empulse near enough to the landing site that Mr Baumgartner could aim for it and make a perfect “land, sit and GO!” πŸ™‚

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But that’s all I have that is Brammo related today. The rest is Balloon Fiesta time, baby. And what a nice time it was. I went with my wife, my eldest daughter, her husband and their amazing and lovely daughter. And we met my mom, my youngest brother, his wife and their lovely and amazing son. My youngest daughter wasn’t there as she in charge of the mobile and online coverage of the Fiesta for the Albuquerque Journal and had been doing insane hours and was taking the day to sleep and sleep and then sleep some more.

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First things first. To celebrate a man taking a balloon to the edges of space and then stepping free and hurtling back to Earth like Icarus, here is my wife and I looking like idiots. Well at least me. My wife looks amazing doing anything.

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That photo was taken at the Balloon Fiesta, but a bit later in the morning. Ballooning is an early morning event and we arrived at 5 am to see the Dawn Patrol set up and take off. And to beat the crowds as 10’s of thousands of people go on the weekends.

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Arrival.

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more people arrive

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I always forget to ask why the launch officials dress as Zebras.

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In the early, pre-dawn AM of the high desert, the best place to stand it near the balloons as they inflate. Those propane tanks put out a lot of heat.

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The first few balloons inflate just before the Sun rises. This is the Dawn Patrol. Usually 6-10 balloons that take off before all the other balloons to see what the wind speeds are and which direction the balloons will go.

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More of the Dawn Patrol

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I liked the combo of the faces lit up by a balloon inflating just out of the photo…and the mountain silhouette lit up by a soon to be rising Sun.

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Ready to go.

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And off they go. I really fell in love with the look of the Mountain and the slowly lightening sky that outlined it. It was hypnotically beautiful.

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After the Dawn Patrol is when the many Many MANY other balloonist start to inflate.

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A panorama of some of the first wave of post dawn balloons inflating.

The Dawn Patrol is always “normal” shaped balloons. The first wave after the Dawn Patrol is also all “normal’ shaped balloons.

Special Shapes never fly with them for 2 reasons.

1. Special Shapes are much harder to fly and more sensitive to the winds. So making sure the other balloons ride easily is very important.

2. The people love them some Special Shapes. So it’s best to have them later in the morning when the bigger crowd has arrived.

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3 of the 4 most important women in my life. 3 of 5 as I should include Becki too.

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The crazy thing is just how close everybody can, and do, get to the balloons. Kids touching them, me poking my head inside one as it inflates.

Surprisingly you never hear of injuries on the ground. You would like one person (me) would get too close and have his hair set on fire…well I guess I’m kinda safe on that part. πŸ™‚

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“Balloon, I am your Owner.” Dark Father was there.

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A nice panorama of a lazy Darth kinda chilling.

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And a few take off. It was a good amount of balloons. Not a great amount, but good. It was the last day and many of the balloonist go home before the last day. I was at a Fiesta one year that had over 700 balloons take off in one morning session…just wave after wave of balloons. It was “memorable”.

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Creamland: It’s Legen…Wait for it….Dairy.

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POW balloon (barbed wire balloon on far edge), SpiderPig (love it) and Simba (he’s new this year). The Baby Bumble Bee (Jolie) has her back to us.

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And probably my favorite balloons…The Bumble Bee family. And the baby is named after my youngest daughter.

When they take off the handlers on the ground spin the Mom and Dad to rotate and “kiss” as they rise…and they, if the winds are low, hold hands the whole time they are in the air. The “baby” usually flies off by herself. She is interesting as the pilot doesn’t ride in a basket. There is a two seat chair similar to what you use as a ski-lift at the mountains for skiing and snowboarding. So two people hang down below the balloon very exposed. Kinda cool.

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More balloons…and the beer garden was taunting me. No alcohol sales in New Mexico till after Noon on Sundays. Though I do wonder how much beer they sell at 7 am. On bitter cold mornings. But probably more than one would expect.

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More balloons….I admit that I didn’t get a lot of images of the mass ascension. I forgot to charge my iPhone the night before and it died…and that is a long story as I also got separated from the family (I have the attention span of a gnat drinking red bull and constantly wander off at events like this) and had to borrow a phone from the Lost Parents security station. Twice. Sigh.

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So that’s it for Photos. I am putting up two short videos of the Dawn Patrol.

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The Propane tanks are quite noisy. Most years we have a balloon or two fly right over our house (usually less than 50 feet above the house) and the dogs go CRAZY. They hate the balloons. And fear them.

The Crowd yells happily with every balloon that launches.

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Short.

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That’s it. Take care and bee safe πŸ™‚ Till next time.

Gavin

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For more info on Brammo, please visit:Β www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness: visit, lurk and maybe join:Β www.brammoforum.com

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Bonus Photo

The daughter and granddaughter getting a photo with one of Darth Vader’s henchmen. I love the look on her face.

“….What the @#$% is that…and why aren’t we running away from it?”

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Bonus 2—Stolen from my daughter’s Facebook

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BrammoBlog: Welcome to the Working Week….ly blog. It’s Blognesday!!

5 09 2012

Blog 39: The Start of the “Once a Week Blog“. I know this is causing much sadness, and gnashing of terrible teeth, but I gather everyone will find a way to accept this…or I’ll EAT YOU UP!

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King of all Wild Things πŸ™‚

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And for people who liked the movie. The movie actually had some really nice parts. And the Creatures were great…but…

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Wasn’t sure if I wanted them both on bikes or not…so did one of each. If you don’t like it, I’ll EAT YOU UP!.

You can’t possibly say, “I’ll eat you up” too many times.

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Part 1: So the blog left off with our farewell tribute to the lovely Green Enertia. Today we start discussing the bold Black Enertia Plus.

With her first photo trip being the freakin’ Grand Canyon (see blog 37), well that was an impossibly high bar to launch a photo career. But the Grand Canyon, while lovely beyond words, was also a short visit. The Plus is now entering her long term test riding portion. With that comes nice photos and fun observations. At least fun for me.

I will be doing a bit of a review of the Plus with next weeks blog. Today focuses on a couple of rides I’ve done since the Grand Canyon.

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One last look at the Plus at the Canyon.

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Background. The Enertia had a city range of about 40 miles. This new Enertia Plus has improved batteries that increase the range to 80 city miles, while keeping the same size and weight. Very nice. 40 miles was fine for commuting, but kept me from going on longer rides. And New Mexico has some lovely rides.

The increased range was much anticipated by me. Still the first test was to see just what the true range was. And to see how well the “fuel gauge” worked (on the Enertia the battery read-out was very linear from 100% down to 40%, but then a bit wonky after that.)

I drove for 5 days on one charge. Commuting, errands and such. City miles, but fast city miles as I usually do roads that are 35 to 45 mph. I think what Brammo calls “city roads” are more like 25-35 mph. I was hoping for 80 miles with my suburban commute. But since the Enertia ranges was more like 35 miles, I thought the Plus’s range would be around 70 miles.

I was surprised.

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It’s Christmas in August at Gavin’s House.

At 18 miles I still had 80% of the battery left, which equals 90 miles to 0% if the battery draw is consistent.

On the old Enertia I would have been at 50%. So already it was over preforming. Nice. But still early in testing.

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First full assessment of the Battery. The draw on the battery is very linear and predictable all the way down to 1%.

I never felt comfortable running the Enertia all the way down, but I’m fine doing it with the Plus.

86 miles is GREAT. Especially with my driving style of “Get in front of cars and don’t let them catch up or they will kill you” πŸ™‚

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So the first run through went very well. Well enough that I decided that the second test would be a long single run from my house to the top of Sandia Peak and back. About 70 miles round trip and some serious hill climbs and speeds of over 55 mph. The battery shouldn’t get me all the way there and back, but I do have some charge spots on the way home.

Surprise number 2: I get all the way there and back without charging and still have 9% of battery left. Super Sweet. Like if chocolate had a society and that society had a superhero and that superhero was super super duper chocolaty***…well just like that. Whatever I just said.

Blood sugar must be low…off to the vending machine….BRB

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First stop is Einsteins for some grub. And yes, Cars Suck.

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I like to stop at Einsteins so I can park in the Motor Cicles parking.

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Next stop is the TinkerTown Museum. I love that place. 25 miles from my house and at the base of the mountain. About 12 miles uphill to the crest. I hope to make it with at least 40% charge.

(more on Tinkertown here: )

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Top of the mountain. 35.6 miles traveled and 40% of the battery left. I think I can make it home on that.

It is all downhill from here, as they say.

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On top of the World…looking down on everyone…Like I am wont to do.

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10,678 feet. I had a group of people all asking questions about the bike until the Ranger came over and frowned upon my choice of parking spots. Sigh.

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So it took 60% of the battery to go from my house at 5232 feet and ride up to Sandia Peak at 10,678 feet. I only had 40% to get home, but I thought I could make it since I would use less energy to get down the hill. And, worse case, I stop at a Subway or Smiths to get some plug time. I like to type plug time.

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No need to worry though. I got home with 9% battery left and went out and did 7 more miles.Β 

76 miles on a charge is pretty good for the trip I did.

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if no video…go to the next one. I used a punk song from 1978 and YouTube is questioning it’s use. It’s freakin’ 34 years old and a handful of people will see it…I doubt the Buzzcocks will care.

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Rt 333 (half of the sign of the beast road I call it). Long….only watch if your bored or boring.

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Heading up Route 14 toward the Sandia mountain. This route goes all the way to Santa Fe and is a FUN FUN ride once you get away from the busy part. Busy…ha.

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Rt 14 and then turning toward the Crest and Tinkertown Museum.

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The whole ascent. Was 20 minutes long…I speeded it up.

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Heading from the Crest back down.

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Part 2: I have to throw this in here. My mother and I went to a fund raiser for Martin Heinrich. He is our Congressman, but is currently running for the US Senate. He is a HUGE fan of the environment and alternative energy. His wife, Julie, was there and told us about how Martin is an Engineer and when he was in college he helped built a solar race car. Nice. We could use more Engineers in Congress.

So we, Rebecca and I, sit and have a drink and talk a bit and get to meet both Rep. Heinrich and his lovely wife. And, of course, it is photo time.

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My mom is 73 and she just kept going on and on about how good looking Rep Heinrich is…embarrassing πŸ™‚

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She then decided that she wanted to Photobomb (should you ever use the word bomb with an elected official?) the future Senator.

I can read his mind: “Lord give me strength. I am a member of the US Congress and I have to deal with this from little old ladies?”

She was actually jumping up and down behind him.

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I talked Rep. Heinrich and Julie into taking a photo with the Enertia Plus. Actually he was very interested in seeing it and talking about it. He even knew the price of the Empulse (well the old Empulse…).

Great Guy. And great wife too. Those things seem to go together. I think a politician’s spouse is the smarter one at least half the time. With Obama and Heinrich I think it is about a tie. Smart husbands. Smart spouses.

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Blurry, darn it…but still a nice photo. Brammo should get him an electric motorcycle. πŸ™‚

I am very free and easy about giving away bikes for Brammo…I’m sure they appreciate that.

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Part 3: Miller Motorsports Park–For some reason I keep calling it Miller’s MotorPark…and then I think of this:

but we must wait….too much for one day…so I will blog again tomorrow…breaking my new rule of one blog a week. Grrrr.

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Till Next Time…

Gavin

For more info on Brammo, please visit:Β www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness: visit, lurk and maybe join:Β www.brammoforum.com

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Bonus Photo…Enertia at Sunset.

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bonus bonus photo:

*** Now when I mention a “super super duper chocolaty” SuperHero…well I instantly think of Willy Wonka…but on a chocolate world with a chocolate society I envision him a bit more like this:

Now before I get grief for putting Gene Wilder (a hero of mine) in BlackFace…well A) He has done it before–See Silver Streak. And B) it isn’t BlackFace, it is yummy Milk Chocolate face. But, yes, I know I’m treading a fine line…and will remove it if anybody asks me too…





Brammo Blog: Independence Day!

5 07 2012

Blog 8, the Ocho.

Independence.

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So many meanings here. And such a powerful word. Love, Hate, Freedom, Independence…certain words have an emotion beyond the letters, beyond the dictionary explanation.

Yesterday the meaning, at least here in the States, is tied to this Country’s early fight for Freedom and Independence from England. **

And that is a very powerful statement…Our Country is Independent. We fought, shed blood, lost families all to have a freer, better future.

Years later, with the Emancipation Proclamation, black slaves in this country started a march towards freedom and Independence from being thought of and treated as property.

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Beyond that the meaning can be more personal. At 18 a young person here in the States becomes Independent of their parents. A progression from infant to child to young adult.

Here at Brammo Blog, Independence can be applied to being independent of Oil and Gas and free from the influence and control of countries that don’t really like us. Heck, many of them kinda hate us.

To me that is important on a few levels. Supporting governments of corrupt countries that treat their citizens poorly and would like nothing better than to see us fail and fall, well that seems “wrong”.

At the same time, becoming Energy Independent is a great way to support our own people, our own country. All while improving our Air, our Water, and our Planet for our children. Shipping oil thousands of miles across Oceans is not a very clean method to power our homes, cars, motorcycles. We can, and will, do better.

Beyond even that, Independence can be finding strength within to fight addiction. Strength within to leave an abusive relationship. Strength to find within a voice of Independent thought.

A strong word. A strong thought. A strong concept.

To be free. To be Independent. Everyday can be your Independence day.

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**(Isn’t it strange that the countries we are closest to are the ones we have fought wars with? England was our first war, and now is likely our closest ally. German, two Great Wars, and now close ally. Japan? We freaking dropped two nuclear weapons on them…the only country to ever have a nuclear bomb used against them…and now we are best buds. Not sure what all that means, just interesting to note.)

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Of course a blog post here would not be complete without some Brammo images or news.

July 4th image from Brammo:

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Brammo’s Youngest Rider

She was adorable making the “incorrect” motorcycle sound…this one doesn’t go “bababababababab” Addy. It goes…..”—–“.

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and lastly….Brammo SENT ME AN EMPULSE R!!!!!

Sadly it is a Empulse R mug…oh well…maybe soon enough I will have a nice new Brammo I can RIDE vs drink out of. πŸ™‚

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Till next time….

Gavin

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For more info on Brammo, please visit:Β www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness:Β  visit, lurk and maybe join:Β www.brammoforum.com





Brammo Blog–Pride Parade and then the Zoo.

2 07 2012
Blog 6…I think.

So this weekend I took the Brammo Enertia for a ride in the Pride Parade. I love riding in Parades…or at least the idea and Utopian concept of riding in Parades. The truth is pretty different though: going 10 feet, stopping, going 12 feet, stopping. Throwing candy to kids. Most of the time they are happy and running to get the candy, which is GREAT! Sometimes they look at it and go, “ok, where’s the good stuff?” Or there’s the 35 year old guy going, “throw me some candy…”Β  Hmmmm, “NO CANDY FOR YOU!!” I say in my best Soup Nazi voice.

Still it is a “certain” kind of fun. As long as you realize there will be mass confusion mixed with stifling boredom in the pre parade set-up (get here an hour early is always what you’re told…still nobody knows where anybody goes and it all just comes down to a free-for-all to get on the road and going…and if you cut off a float filled with 6’6″ guys all dressed like Divine, well, as the Pat Benetar Drag Queen says, “you better run, you better hide” ).

Then the Parade itself will move slower than you think humanly possible. Plus there will be a certain number of kids that look at your FREE CANDY with distain…and a certain number of supposed ADULTS who will be pissed when you don’t throw them candy. Mix in a few mildly brain damaged people that think it is OK to cross from one side of the road to the other while the parade is going on just for fun…AND add in the fact that it will always be on the HOTTEST day of the year for some crazy reason. Stir gently till the Crazy mixes with the Excitement and Energy…then fold in a pinch of Heat Stoke and a dash of Anger…and bake till everything boils over….

Other than that it’s great πŸ™‚

So this was the Pride Parade (vs the Day of the Dead Parade or the Annual Toy Run or other parades I try to do). I like to do the Pride Parade for a couple of reasons. TONS of PEOPLE. It is a very happy and joyous Parade and so is the crowd….Dare I say it is a very happy and gay crowd. It is also the most outrageous parade and crowd (the Day of the Dead is a close second for outrageousness). Plus I love to support my gay family and friends.

This Parade I took my 16 year old niece (image below) who is visiting from South Carolina. She rode on the back of the Enertia and was the one throwing most of the candy (I still threw some as I couldn’t resist…nothing is quite like throwing food on the dirty ground to kids who don’t know you from jack and watching them happily running after it…with their parents approval! What a gloriously strange world we live in…”Johnny, the drag queen just threw you a tootsie roll, say thank you to the nice…person.” Sadly, I was actually dressed kinda boring…helmet, leather jacket, jeans, bright pink over-sized Cod Piece I “borrowed” from the Band Cameo…I pretty much always ride in the same gear).

Not me:) My niece and the Enertia…with bag of candy and Rainbow Chain graphic…the theme of the parade was Pride Links Us Together. I really didn’t do much “decoration”. A) I really can’t compete with the “Pros” and B) I had freaking FREE CANDY. I WIN!!!

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There were lessons to be learned here. Which I will now describe in too much detail:

Some FACTS

The Parade started at 10 am. It is a 2 mile ride from the start at the University of New Mexico to the end at the New Mexico State Fair Grounds. That 2 mile ride takes an hour or so at “Parade Speed.” Parade Speed should replace Jumbo Shrimp as the go-to example for the word Oxymoron. We arrived at the starting point about 9 am and walked around and then drove around and basically mingled and looked at the floats and such. It was already 90 plus degrees and sunny. We had left the house without drinking or putting on sunscreen (I am a horrid Uncle–that actually might be my official title from now on with my in-laws from South Carolina—“Oh him? That’s just my HORRID UNCLE…dum dum dum dum dum dummmmmmmmmmb.”) My niece had never ridden on a motorcycle before. I was being over-protective and not only made her wear my wife’s helmet to the Parade, but also for the whole Parade. It is a full faced helmet. It was hot. We were going slow with constant stopping and starting and somewhat jerky motions as I was unaccustomed to riding with a passenger who kept changing the center of gravity of the bike by throwing candy.

So….1.5 miles into what I thought was a nice little parade ride, my lovely niece leans forward and says, “We need to stop, I feel dizzy and think I might throw up.”Β  As a father, and now grandfather, I know those words all so well…and know that I ignore them at my peril. “Ok, there is a side road up ahead and a break in the crowd. I’ll pull off there.”

She also did not quite understand how the D-Ring of a motorcycle helmet functions. So I am quickly helping her get her helmet off, the whole time she is bending over and making retching sounds……and it all was fine. Ha, you thought I was going to get covered in puke, didn’t you…Nope, this wasn’t college…but that is another story.

It was the end of our Parade. I took her to a Wendy’s on the corner, got her some water and kept her in the Air Conditioning (which is a Gift from God on days like that).Β  Then I called my wife and had her come by and pick the niece up ( We were all heading to the Zoo after the parade, and this way I got to have some fun riding the motorcycle that I can’t have with a dizzy nauseous teenage on the back. Plus I really didn’t want to have her put the helmet on again.)

So what did I learn? 1. Hydrate. You would think I would have learned that by now having lived in the high desert for the last 17 years. Nope. It is a lesson I must learn over and over again. It is my mental Groundhog’s Day. My mental Prometheus. 2. Sunscreen. see hydrate for how stupid I am. 3. To Helmet or Not to Helmet, that is the Question…actually, no you idiot, that shouldn’t be a question at all. In a parade when it is 100 degrees and you’re going basically negative miles per hour, do not make your niece wear a full faced helmet. 4. If you forget 1,2 and 3 for some reason, expect your wife to give you “that look” when she comes to rescue your niece. The look that says, “Dear God, I’ve married a complete and utter imbecile…How did this happen and how can I kill him in his sleep and get away with it? 5. There is no 5.

Some photos here from the Local Newspaper:

http://abqjournal.photoshelter.com/gallery/Albuquerque-PrideFest-Parade-2012/G00007m6u_TC7H9c/C0000bkZQ.UxBjtg

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I was too busy riding and making my niece nauseous to take photos. I did do some video…that I need to edit…but here is a short clip:

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This is just a random clip I grabbed. I had planned to edit down the clips, but I think I might just put up a few clips and not make an “official” video. This is the first time I used my new ContourRoam helmet camera. I have a lot to learn.

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After the Parade we all went to the Zoo (because, really, where else do you want to go at noon on a day that is 100 plus degrees other than a place where multiple exotic animals are sleeping in their odoriferous and slowly baking poo). Here is a clip of me catching up to the wife and giving her a wave…

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You can’t see, but she waved back…but I think she might have had a cramp in her hand as she didn’t hold up all her fingers when she waved.

I will put up the other clips tomorrow.

Till then…have a blast…

Gavin

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For more info on Brammo, please visit:Β www.brammo.com
For more images, photos, discussions and all around Brammo goodness:Β  visit, lurk and maybe join:Β www.brammoforum.com





Halloween 2010…The distant future.

4 11 2010

A quick blog post—this is a mash up of a couple of internet posts I did about this Halloween and the costume I made. So the post will likely be a bit “rough”

In other words, all errors and typos are intentional πŸ™‚

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So I was inspired by a friend who did a cardboard robot versions ofΒ  star wars storm troopers***…wanted to do a cardboard robot with the iPad as my chest piece playing clips of robots from classic movies…it all got a little complicated as cardboard became plastic trashcan, arms are drainage ducts, eyes are infinity pendants, got an old compression, oil pressure, vacuum pressure dial off ebay… etc etc…It is now over six feet tall and insanely uncomfortable and hot…gah, what we do for art.

The legs never came together, so I did a last minute box thingy…the last minute box thingy was horrid to walk in, so that was scrapped for silver body suit–a left over from last year when Deanna and I went as “Hole in the Wall” contestants. Might save the robot costume for next year and do the legs and feet right.

Anyways…will post some video later…one good thing is that the costume kept me from getting too drunk…almost impossible to drink in…obviously a Halloween costume flaw.

Here is the pumpkin I did…my first “scrapping, not cutting” pumpkin. My daughter hasn’t been able to play any Fallout 3 for a couple of months and is missing it…so I made this for her as she came home for the weekend just to hit the Halloween party.

Needed a bit of touch up.Β  Lightening of the face and hand…but not bad for a first effort…heck, only cut one of my fingers doing it. Of course I think I probably will end up getting a tetanus shot next week anyways as my robot costume has nuts and bolts and a few screws sticking into the habitation compartment. (edit. covered exposed screws with foam and managed to go the whole night without cutting myself with my costume…so probably don’t need a tetanus shot…yea, teh win).

(side note: Heck we were invited to 3 adult Halloween parties this year…does anybody remember when Halloween was for kids?)

As for Halloween trick or treaters coming to the door on Sunday, surprisingly had a ton of kids this year. Only a few from our neighborhood and we usually get maybe 10 kids on Halloween…not this year…lots of parents bringing their kids by car to our neighborhood…had to run out and get more candy as we thought we had over-stocked, but went through 4 bags of candy very fast…needed double the amount we had on hand.. Huge groups of 15 kids at a time, then a group of 7, then a group of 15 etc etc…was fun though…I think the parents brought their kids from less safe neighborhoods to ours…which is cool…don’t want kids trick or treating in the war zone if the parents can get them to an area with less car traffic and less gun fire

The final cleaned up version of my first scraping pumpkin. A bit of scraping behind the face and hand to thin the pumpkin “meat” and lighten up those areas so the shirt and pants would appear as darker clothing. I used a cord and 60w light bulb to get good illumination from the pumpkin. One, candles don’t put out as much light. Two, the light of a candle is less focused. Three, a strong light allows me to not have to scrape as deep into the pumpkin…easier on me and the pumpkin πŸ™‚

The pipboy lasted well all weekend and went to 3 parties and was on display for the trick or treaters (along with my robot costume sitting on the porch outside). I thought for sure it would get smashed, but still “alive” this morning. I think I will do a scrapping not cutting pumpkin for a couple of more years…was fun.

(sorry for the bad image…love my iPhone, but she doesn’t do low lighting photos well)

As for my costume…everybody loved it…I think the eyes are killer and the size is more impressive when you are at a party and suddenly see me walk in or walk by. And the kids REALLY loved it… at first they were afraid of it, but then gah, they followed me everywhere like baby ducklings…hugging me and yelling, “we love you robot”…it was borderline surreal. and a bit tiring…after about an hour of non-stop being either herded or followed by children I pleading with other adults, “please help me, why isn’t anybody else interacting with the children?” they were, “oh, you’r doing a great job.” finally had to tell the kids that robot needed to power-down. which meant get drunk.

(Robbie the Robot from Forbidden Planet was my inspiration)

The ipad had clips from about 10 robot movies…an hour long loop…no movie sound, instead I inserted clips of robot noises and robot phrases (“i am a robot”, “warning warning”, “powering down”, “you are a man, i am a machine, other than that slight difference we have much in common”… etc etc)

My eyes pulsed and had insane depth due to led magic…the mouth was my area for vision, but you couldn’t see in, just out. and i loved my steampunk dial console…had temp, oil pressure and vacuum pressure…real gauges. It’s the little details that make it more fun for me. But the kids loved the robot hands the best. Grabbing them, shaking them.

going for some cupcakes.

If I use this again I will work on getting the robot legs…tried a couple of things…didn’t work out like I wanted…so went with simple silver legs…

body…trash can, head…Halloween cauldron, arms….drainage pipe, hand…robot claws with real ratchet sound…

But enough about me….

my wife, who is constantly cleaning and we all make fun of her for it, went as a super hero called Mighty Maid. And yes I am a lucky man. Beautiful, smart and very very cleanly. She is the wind beneath my wings and the cleanser on all the counter tops.

Gavin

Deanna had a good photo of the pumpkin without the light on–or her flash overpowered the light…either way, good image of just the pumpkin and scrapped pipboy image.

Bonus photo and link.

*** drew is my hero….and the inspiration for my being a robot this year.

http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=19157&highlight=cardboard

(love seeing them in front of “real storm troopers”)

 

Second bonus…. Cardboard super heroes done up with paint and precision…

(quite impressive. some mad skills there.)






Winter Gloves.

27 10 2010

Sigh…Yesterday I had to break out the winter gloves.

Why? Especially so early in the year? Usually I”m not rocking the winter gloves till December. And no it’s not that I’m getting old and frail. Well not completely.

This is why…

33 degrees is just a bit cold, so time to put away the fall gloves and go for my “high tech” winter riding gloves…yep, regular old ski gloves.

Luckily I was back to my fall gloves this morning, and hopefully for many more weeks. What is crazy is that I was riding just a week or so ago up to the top of Sandia and getting a sunburn. I actually rode that day in light leather coat and even without a glove on my left hand as I was trying to film some of the ride while holding my iPhone….Yes, very dumb.

side note:

***Kids, don’t do what Donny Don’t does***

End side note:

But it was hella warm compared to yesterday. And that is up another 5 thousand feet and usually 20 degrees colder. Hopefully yesterday was an aberration, and that the winter gloves say hidden under the seat in storage until at least Thanksgiving.Β  Time, and my increasing frailty, will tell.

Here is the short video from the mountain ride…Yes I was driving slow…and yes the video is a bit jerky….you try driving one handed while videoing with an iPhone.

Again, iPhone…Scooter…twisty mountain road…filming…one handed. That said, I will duct tape the phone to my helmet next time πŸ™‚

This was nearer the bottom and not as twisty as the top…I hoped to film going all the way up but: one, it really was less than safe. two, I wasn’t having nearly as much fun as I do when I get to ride the turns fast. So it is what it is.

On a second side note:

Went with Daniel and Zack this weekend on a ride up to Madrid and the Mine Shaft Tavern (surprisingly not a gay bar). Good ride, good company…Nice buffalo burger. Fall gloves πŸ™‚

Third freakin’ side note (isn’t everything in essence a side note when it comes to blogs?):

Last night heading home from Geeks who Drink (we got 1st place…yea, randon knowledge and drinking…thank god the Irish are good at something πŸ™‚ ) I hit 10,000 miles on my bigger scooter.

Will put a few more miles on her this weekend as Daniel, Zack and I (and maybe I can convince some of the scooter people?) head down to Los Lunas and visit The Tractor Brew Company. We will try not to “Get Plowed” as we will have to ride back and get ready for the Halloween Party at the McCullough-Aaron household.

http://www.getplowed.com/

 

This time of year is beautiful down along the Rio Grande…All the cottonwoods should be nice and yellow.Β  So getting a few good rides in before the leaves all fall is my plan…that and the weather (when not 33 degrees in the morning) is great this time of year for nice long rides.

That will be three weekend rides in a row…sweetness. And all the scooter people are riding down to Tucson the weekend after that. Not sure I can make it, but the thought of driving 480 miles with a bunch of crazy scooter people is almost too good to turn down. I feel a fever brewing around thursdays the 4th and might need a couple of days off work πŸ™‚

8 hours of riding a scooter one day, followed by 8 hours of riding a scooter the next…ah, a painful bliss that calls to me. Sure by Sunday I will have to watch football laying on my belly with frozen peas duct taped to my ass, but the upside is hard to pass up.

Gavin

ps…yes I know I still have my solar panels to discuss and a blog to post on electric vehicles….soon…