This one’s for @velocb, @jtaylorjones and @courier429 and I know @kirkalbers will eventually see this


[Disclaimer, not my cats, BUT THEY’RE SO GODDAMNED CUTE]

I’ve owned a smart for for just about three years now. I’ve enjoyed my time on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, SnapChat and have even found some use on USA Cycling’s half-assed attempt on a useful, user friendly smart phone application.

After a breakup with a women I believed I was going to spend the rest of my life with, my friend suggested an app I’d never heard of – Tinder.

It took some elements of “Hot or Not” and FB messenger, gave you a little BIO section to try and express how much of an individual you found yourself, or how interested in food and photography you were, or what sport teams you followed religiously; but were either largely non-religious or felt compelled to inform your future EX exactly how the wrath of God work.

Seriously, it appeared, on paper, to be a positive environment.

I downloaded the app to my smart phone and began to use it immediately.

I added some photos – mostly of me racing my bike, BECAUSE, LIKE THAT’S WHO I TOTALLY AM. I let them know the rules “PMA | No Jerks”.

If you’re unfamiliar with the system – swipe one direction, hope for a hook up – swipe another direction and hope you never see that photo again.

I swiped. And swiped. And swiped. There were some gorgeous women on there and fancying a night out with them made me very excited.


After a few hours, a few shots and a lot of beer, there was a match.

I immediately struck up a conversation and against my friend’s best suggestion I did not send a d*ck p*ck.

She was a young professional that worked for a popular, app based livery service. She traveled. Read. Enjoyed coffee and had a very nice since of fashion. SHE WAS MY DREAM GIRL.

Or so I thought.

Date #1

On a Wednesday afternoon -After a days of chatting – I finally mustered up the nerve to ask her for coffee We agreed to meet Thursday morning around 11am.

Later that evening, on my usual Wednesday night closing shift, the host informed me I had a table of five at table 51. I prepared the waters and headed out of the kitchen. As I rounded the corner in to the dining room and took my first glance at the table, I said to myself, “Oh she’s pretty.” As I got closer, my stomach began to turn.

I approached the table with the confidence of the Lion from Wizard of Oz and dropped the waters, of course to her first, and proudly said, “Good evening, how is everyone? I am Spencer and I’ll be taking care of you.”

She looked right at me and winked.

I went over the evening’s features and excused myself from the table. I went to the server side station and checked my phone – she had already messaged me, “#AWKWARD”

For the rest of the evening we made uneasy eye contact thought I remained collected.

A few moments later I returned to the table and the group fell silent. I presented the five separate checks [fucking amateurs] and walked away. I once again returned to my phone. I opened a message that said, “I told them group how I knew you. They all thought it was very adorable.”

JESUS CHRIST. My stomach dropped.

I returned to the table and collected their bills, swiped their cards and wished them a wonderful evening.

A few hours later, as I sat at the bar slamming a few heavy IPAs and a few shots of Bulliet, I got a message, “So I can’t lie that meeting was about relocating me to San Francisco to head the office there. I will be leaving Thursday afternoon, if you’d like to grab that cup of coffee before I fly out I’d enjoy that.”

I declined and wished her luck.


Shortly after that experience I deleted the app from my phone; only to redownload it a few nights later in a drunken rage. I began to swipe like a madman. I changed my profile pictures from biker guy, to punk rock bassist to handsome model guy with a decent sense of style.

I awoke in the AM with a match and a message.


“Hey, I think I know you,” the message read, “Did you go to ****** High School?”

Hardly able to open my eyes, I responded, “Yes. Quite some time ago.”

We chatted for a few hours and it turned out we had a few mutual acquaintances from the school. Over the next few days, I invited her out for coffee. The meet up kept getting pushed back until, finally, on a Sunday morning she agreed to meet for a cup around 3.

At roughly 2:45pm I received a message that she had to push back to 5pm, then to 6pm. I knew this was going no where but to hell quickly – straight for Hookupville a municipality I have no tolerance for. Around 3:30pm we agreed to get a drink at a high volume cantina on a popular block in Columbus. Against my best discretion.

Date #2

I arrived five minutes early. She must have at least been six minutes early because she was already sipping a clear cocktail with an sour, acidic fruit on the rim.

I introduced myself and we began that slow and low small talk. I ordered myself a Bulliet, light ice.

It was cumbersome to say the least. The conversations were all dead ends. I mean, I’d ask a question and she’d answer with a single word. Then I’d rant about some bullshit for ten minutes and ask her thoughts. Our conversation style did not mesh well to say the least.

I ordered a second Bulliet, light ice. Then a third.

At some point, with enough bourbon I thought, the ice would eventually break. It didn’t.

I ordered another, a fourth, Bulliet, light ice. After about two hours of painful, headache inducing small talk, I finally had to use the restroom. I got up, slid my phone in my pocket – to text my buds the deets from the urinal, of course – and made my way to the bathroom. As I walked through a small doorway, I noticed the exit sign, out of sight from the bar.

In my slightly inebriated state, I made the most awful decision of my life – I made a b-line for the exit. 

Within forty-five seconds, I was down the stairs, out the door, on my bike and around the block. I never looked back. I never even considered going back.

Out of sight but not out of mind. I made my way to my favorite bar and ordered a shot of Bulliet followed by a strong IPA.


The next morning I felt awful and it wasn’t the pounding headache of drinking a half bottle of Bulliet or deciding an IPA was a great chaser; it was the fact that I ditched a very nice person that I had absolutely nothing in common with. She was actually very nice, very pretty, had a very good job and worked very hard. As we sat there talking, neither of us could make a conversation work. Which is okay.

I never heard from her again, for good reason, but I always imagine that I’ll see her out and I’ll likely deserve the slap in the face I have coming my way. Or the beating I’ll get from her and her friends.

I deleted the app for good after that last incident and haven’t redownloaded or one like it since. I’ve been struggling with being single recently but decided that if I can’t meet someone face to face, I’m likely better off single than superficially perusing an app, judging beauty or attractiveness based on a few pictures and one hundred forty character bio.

Plus, if you can’t properly inform people of who you are in one hundred forty emojis, I’m not sure we’ll ever get along anyway.


[ZOMGZ not kitties but collies are so fucking adorable fuck me fuckkkkkkkk]

Jerks in Tall Socks

I hesitate to announce, but my 2013 cyclo-cross campaign came to a quick  and uneasy end.


(Le Race Face)

The unravelling began around Mid-November after a series of very strong races from Infirmary 1&2, UCI 3 and Smith Farms CX. I got sick, took week off the bike and tried to race at Alum Creek. After crashing quite hard and then rolling a tubular, I threw in the proverbial towel. Later that evening I spent 5 hours in the ER after what became known as the “COGOtality”. Seven stitches later and zero hours on the bike outside a race, I decided to skip my goal for the 2013 season – the Ohio State championships of cyclo-cross in Broadview Heights.


(Le Podium Face)

Fortunately, that was a great idea. The race was only about a week after the COGOtality and my skin was still healing. The course, I’ve heard from numerous reports, was icy and rutted and just about everyone went down once. Thankfully I stuck around Columbus and partied hearty all weekend.


(Le COGOtality)

The following week, Thanksgiving week, I again partied hearty. Very few hours on the bike and one too many whiskeys, I was in no way prepared for PostgivingCX. I dusted off the old single speed and gave it a go despite staying out till the wee hours of the morning with my friends. It was a complete disaster. In the end I decided that if  I can’t podium in a local single speed race, what’s the point of racing?

The second annual PostgivingCX party was a tad different than the year before. Instead of food, we just drank. I had been busy setting up and tearing down the race and was in no way prepared to cook, bake and serve food to my friends. In turn, we stayed up and listened to music and enjoyed a few rounds of goods beers and good Knob Creeks.

Unknowing to all my friends, I had a plan. After the disastrous week of drinking and not riding, my body felt like a pile of shit. I had a plan –

  • Ride the next few days out
  • Party hard
  • Then get to work

As it stands, I am in the “get to work” phase. “Get to work” you may ask? Yes, “get to work”. While the temperature is only going to be getting cooler, I plan on putting in some good hours in the next 14 days. When the temperatures drop below 30°F I can last about 2/2.5 hours outside. Hopefully, over the next 14 days I can get anywhere from 28-30 hours in and that should be a nice base for my next set of goals, which begin in early January.

Tony, Alex and myself got to work by slamming some super sweet and super secret dirt roads. Getting out, despite a nearly debilitating hangover, was amazing. I climbed okay for being hungover, but really I just had a great time finally getting out to ride. The roads were great and the dudebrolyfe-ing was greater. These dudes are some good dudes and I hope to retain some serious friendship for along time to come.


(Le ShredZone 720)

Outside of that? Yea, well, no drinking. At least not for 14 days. After that I’ll see where I stand.

Anything else? You may remember Ian Broadhead, former contributor to this blog while it was momentarily renamed “The VeloBros Standard”. Well, we’re embarking on a new journey in local blogsmanship. We will be co-managing a new blog called “Jerks in Tall Socks”. Expect more than just stories of bicycle racing and riding. Expect more than analyzations of mediocrity and amateurism with in our local cycling scene. We’re not necessarily jerks, but we do wear and believe that tall socks are the one and only way to approach any given ride or race or life journey. Take it for what it is.

Check it out here –

It’s been nice world, see you next time.



Maybe the best summer ever? Potentially, on record, this is the most mild summer central Ohio has seen is years. I mean, quite literally, Sami and I have not had the A/C on for more than 24 hours for the past 2 months.

So if the weather’s nice, that means there’s been some bikin’, right? Sure.

  • A lot of nice rides.
  • AND some hard rides.
  • There have been some beautiful
  • And some fucking ugly rides
  • I’ve done some rides just to put shit on Strava
  • And I’ve done a few rides just to post to Twitter
  • I’ve narrowly avoided the Circle and it’s plagued “group ride”
  • Oh, races! Sure, plenty of those things too.

But really I’ve just been having a lot of fun. It wasn’t until last week that I felt a little strong. There was this itch, but I felt good. Maybe it’s the new bike –

1094078_10100273340934877_1756417830_o-1I’m totally harnessing the strength of my Basque brethren on Euskaltel-Euskadi on this one. Let’s hope I can keep the rubber side more often then they do.

Good news? I’m a category 3 road racer now, which is a big deal right? Nahhh, not really. But at least races are going to be longer and if I want I REALLY, REALLY want go up against those dudes at Panther, I can. Guess it depends on if i feel like staring at my stem on the road in front of me though. Still, every experience is a learning experience and getting to ride with 3s will teach me a lot, much more if the day comes that I jump in a 1/2/3 field.

So, yea. Bikes, right? bikes bikes bikes bikes bikes.

9344180522_72c8535c7b_zIt may just be a silly short track race, but winning felt good for a day, still disappointed I couldn’t celebrate with 100 margaritas though.


Head down & chasin’ Tony. Thanks for the picture Mom!

Who knows. But bikin’ is fun and if it ain’t than give it up.

Also, take a few minutes, ahem, hours, a day to talk non-bike related crap. You know, ask what others are in to. Maybe read a book or watch a show completely unrelated to cycling. Remember that family and friends don’t always want to hear all about the race or the training, but that doesn’t mean they don’t care, right?

I’ve yet to figure out the balance between cycling and non-cycling life, but some days it’s just better to sit on a couch with Sami, eat popcorn and watch Breaking Bad than it is to even look at a bike.

Lastly, thank you local bike shop and don’t be a turd to the man or woman giving you that wicked sweet discount. Remember they’re not making any, or much, money off your sorry ass, so buy them a beer or two if you see them out. Take them coffee. Buy them lunch. Take them beer. Cookies work too. They’re cyclist too, so food of any kind is good, right? Don’t demand onsite repairs or assistance every time you walk through the door – and if it’s important (remember that cycling is recreational/leisure for 98% of us, that “important” is subjective) give them a call first and see if it’s okay.

Maybe I’m just high from huffing GooGone all morning trying to get last year’s rim tape off my ‘cross tubbies or maybe I’m finally excited about riding bikes, but you just gotta remember to keep that effing PMA.



Coaches evaluations of the past 3 weeks

After the inaugural Tour of Franklin in downtown Columbus, I vowed to give bike racing a proper go and get better. But after some power evaluations with Coach Ripley ‘alien slayer’ Jonesy. She also informed me that I’m missing about 40% of my power when I need it – usually because I do some inefficient techniques at the most ineffective times.

First off, Coach Ripley says stay off the front. My excuse was that it is hard, especially in the category four fields. The ridiculously poor handling makes the category four fields a proverbial clown car. To be 100% fair, my ability to lean and turn my bicycle hasn’t been what it was in the past. After a few spills in some gravel road races this year, I’m a little weary of my own skills in whilst leaning over sideways.

Second, Coach says to get more quality rides in. Quantity can look cool on Strava, but quality is what counts on the weekends. I had no rebuttal to that.

Third, she wishes that I would get out of my own head during races. Again, I couldn’t agree more.

Lastly, Coach Ripley reminded me to have fun. Something I often think about, yet commonly overlook.

Race reviews for nerds that care –

  • 6.8.2013 + KingsCX Short Track – Went down to check out the short track races at KingsCX. Light turn out, different style course than Cap City Short Track. Tight and twisty with some decent elevation for the short lap. Rode well, never gave it too much gas. Flatted in the SS (on my cobbled together SSCX rig) and crashed hard during the 1/2/3 open. Gashed knee and so on.
  • 6.15.2013 + Ohio State MTB Championship at Chestnut Ridge – The category one field was strong; a bunch of Clevelanders that can shred. Chestnut Ridge, for what it’s worth, is not a race venue. Perfectly fun trail for a few laps, but too tight for racing. The groups spread out quickly. My first lap was a PR (somewhere around 41 minutes, 3 minutes off lead pace), laps two and three were significantly worse. A friend said, “Hey, top 10 in a cat one race is a top 10 no matter what.” I begged to disagree.
  • 6.23.2013 + Tour d’Burg – In the past couple of years I’ve rallied on and on about d’Burg being my favorite race of the year (mountain, road or ‘cross) and that hasn’t changed at all. I felt strong going in to the race and had some very good rides the week before. I was feeling strong and my turning was getting better. As it usually happens, things didn’t go according to plan and I finished a distant sixth, so far off the podium. 9127283678_108117e5a8_b(Thanks Mom)
  • 6.28.2013 + Tour de Grandview – If I felt fresh and strong at ‘Burg, then I definitely felt strong at Grandview, but something was missing. I did some crushing pulls to bring back two or three breaks and set up Aaron for a run at the podium. Unfortunately I didn’t recover quick enough and he wasn’t able to get him to the top step. Third for him, pack for me. Very disappointing.

9173769569_b1d2a7c7ec_b(Doing work. THANKS AGAIN MOM)

  • 6.29.2013 + Hyde Park Blast – I always say I won’t go back, but I always go back. Admittedly, I enjoyed myself a little too much after Grandview and didn’t eat within 2 hours of the race. Combined with two or three beers, I never got a proper recovery. The category four/five race started dry, but after two laps we were racing in torrential downpours. The field splintered and I made the top half of the first group. From there everything went down hill. The category three/four race was dry but with sprinkles. Starting just 3 short hours after the end of my first race, fresh isn’t what I’d consider myself. I made the initial split and hung on at the back of the group and popped thirty minutes in to the race. I hung and finished strong in the second group. Pack finishes in both races.

It’d be nice to say that I’d be getting back to work, but there aren’t many crits left to do. One option is the Lionheart GP (Formerly the Pur Tour) on a course that really isn’t all the fun. Quite frankly, I don’t like it. However, it provides the opportunity for multiple races and it’reasonably close to home. Another option is the Mass Ave. Crit in Indy. It’s further away, but the quality of field will be quite a bit higher than Lionheart GP. I can do two races, but the expense of the trip may not be worth it. Both races on August 10. On August 11, there is a full on RR in NE Ohio – Wooster area. Part of me will want to be there, the other part is saying, “race MTBs at Westbranch instead.”

I know, this shit’s boring. Just wait until I win a race and all you’re going to hear about his how much pizza I’m going to eat. Seriously.