Top of Pocupine Rim. We had to battle to the death with many UNICYCLISTS. They were having some kind of one-wheeled rally on the very trail we were riding on Saturday. Wolf gave them respect and told all of them they were winners as he rode by. Riley, Dave, Brooks and I sped past the uni-tards and called them out for what they really were: Circus Boys in Training. (With no disrespect to Circus Boy and Hurricane, whose unicycle skills are used appropriately and judiciously in the Manti 4th of July parade.)
This is the Happiest Club in Moab. Larry is showing off his battered and scarred knees to the sunshine while the rest of us are just maxin' and relaxin'. BTW: The Wolf's knees are heretofore known as The Monster Baby Heads.
Riley and Phil on a lovely ride in the slickrock desert. We both had moments of spiritual clarity on this ride. You really had to be there.
Dude with the camera: Dave Madsen
The Wolf vs. The Stoned Uranium Bicycle Girl
So, we had a funny episode in the life of the Wolf down in Moab. Why this is funny is because these kinds of stories always seem to involve the Puppet Master and the rest of us get to watch in amusement. Wolf gets himself into these dilemmas because he is the nicest guy in the world and also the one with the shortest patience. Now, having to battle these two conflicting behaviors his whole life, the Wolf has certain little tics and mannerisms that tip all of us off as to what kind of mood he in, once these traits begin to clash. Hence the tale of, Wolf and the Stoned Girl at the Bike Shop:
Scene: The Wolf (W) walks into this bike shop on Main Street in Moab and proceeds to ask the first person he sees about a trail we want to ride. This person happens to be Stoned Girl (SG):
W: Hi, how are you?
SG: Hi!....(she pauses, eyes very glassy and wide, and she looks at all of us and then attempts to focus on Larry).
W: Hi...um, do you know if the Upper Porcupine Section is open to ride?
SG: Hi!.....Ummm....the Lower Porcupine Section is awesome! I rode it yesterday!
W: Oh cool, that's good to know. What about the Upper Section, you know, is there any snow on the trail?
SG: Hi!....(she proceeds to walk over to the counter, pick up a plastic jug of water and hastily takes a large gulp to curb the oncoming cotton mouth that will eventually render her almost unable to speak).
W: Okaaaay. (The Wolf has now gone from hands in his pockets to his arms folded and his stance has now widened. What this means is the Wolf is deciding on whether to keep talking to this person, who he is quickly perceiving to be kind of an idiot, and doing it in a way that doesn't hurt her feelings...too badly). Is there someone here who knows if the upper part can be ridden?
Bike Mechanic Guy with Bad Hair (he happens to be wheeling a bike by and overhears the last 10 seconds of this conversation): Uh, yeah, the Upper is just dusted with snow but should be ok to ride. No worries.
SG (as she now looks at Larry like she's seeing him for the first time): Oh, the Upper part, yeah, it has snow on it.
(Now, Bike Mechanic guy is off helping someone else clearly leaving no one for Wolf to talk to except Stoned Girl).
W: Ok, so, is it rideable on the upper part? He just said there was snow. How much snow? Did it snow there last night? Are people riding it this morning? Are you guys taking riders on your shuttle to the Upper Parking Area? (Folks, this is CLASSIC Wolf behavior. If he senses you don't understand him or didn't hear him, he rapid fires several questions at you to get your attention. If you can anwer one of them correctly, you will not get the Wolf Stare followed by the Half Wolf Laugh, the Wide Wolf Eyes and the Wolf Turning His Head to Look Around Him to Make Sure He's Not Getting Punk'd by Ashton Kutcher.)
SG: Um, yeah, that upper part is killer when the trail is good. Great descents and gnarly turns. (pause). Are you guys going up there?
W (clearly exasperated now, not knowing where to go from here, he looks around for his posse for back up. However, his posse want no part of the Stoned Girl's action and we are all in various parts of the store stifling laughs and smart ass comments): Okay, here is what I need to know: can we drive up to the Upper Parking area of Porcupine Rim and ride the UPS trail today? Right now?
SG: Oh yeah, all the snow is gone. You guys will have a killer time.
W (with the fakest smile known to man): Great. Thanks. Have a nice day.
Band of the Week
This feature was suggested to me by my main man Ryan Brooks as we were travelling down to Moab and we were all creating our On-The-Go playlists on the iPods. He said it would be nice to know of different bands from different genres that he had not heard of previously. This way, he doesn't have to do any of the research or legwork but can just download the tunes right from his computer knowing that if a band made Band of the Week, they must be good.
OK, here we go. Oh, and they will be in the Playlist so you can sample their music. This week's BOTW is:
These four guys from Birmingham, England, have had many comparisons to The Cure, Interpol, Echo & the Bunnymen and Joy Division. I love all the aforementioned bands but what makes Editors stand out is the immediate connection you can make with their songs. They formed in 2003 and put out their most recent album in 2007 called An End Has a Start. They are completely obsessed with the Big Themes of Life: living, dying, leaving loved ones behind and finding meaning in any of it. As dark as they appear, they are sublimely optimistic and tragic simultaneously. Have a listen and enjoy: Editors.
PS: they do covers of R.E.M and The Cure which I've included in the Playlist. If you want to try just one Editors song, skip to Smokers Outside Hospital Doors.