Ride for Veterans

Cycling and anything that keeps the wheels turning. Marine veteran remembering the time I served as well as looking to help others.

Getting some tail, and using my fingers.

Catching the tail wind on a brief ride tonight.

There’s nothing better than riding in the same direction as the wind. Doesn’t happen too often here in Orlando either due to luck, or the great stints of weather I end up riding in. When it does though I fully appreciate the added boost. The soundtrack to tonight’s ride brought to you by DJ Swan. Good buddy of mine and always has a great mix to pedal to. You can check out some of his tracks here.

It wasn’t a very long ride tonight, I wanted to do it more for speed and intensity to check on something my body has been doing. Too many migraines this week to ignore. I’m thinking there is a connection with my blood pressure. That or I have just been around too many other people that have been pissing me off. Both are plausible.

What the hell is the matter with people?

The-Big-Lebowski-WTF-GifThe end of July has always been a fuzzy time for me in the past. This year it’s just been filled with an abundance of inner issues. Combine that with the mini interactions I have with people, you know the ones that make one want to run head first into a brick wall.

A quick example of one of those mini interactions occurred tonight. I like to call these type of people too stupid to let their brain catch up to their own dumb. I’ll try to put that in plain English or something that makes sense. Ever watch someone do something you know is going to be wrong and at the same time you can see it on their face that they know it as well? Well in these instances these people are being stupid at such great speeds that it’s damn near impossible for them to stop the current actions.

This type of driver deserves a brick through the window.


Not too sure why drivers pull this maneuver, but they do constantly. Speeding past a cyclist only to slam on their brakes and cut in front of them to make a right turn. I’m thankful that I have quick enough reflexes to stop myself from slamming into the side of vehicles that do this. Wouldn’t it be much easier to wait 0.5 seconds for the cyclist to pass the road you wish to turn down?

The special person that cut me off tonight received a double dose of my erect fingers. Letting them know just how appreciative I was of their driving skills.


Now how many of you perverts read the title of this post and assumed I was talking about a girl? For shame!

I’ve been told that water keeps you alive.

Riding around Orlando.

While out exploring the Orlando area I learned a few lessons. Mostly where NOT to ride again, that cobblestone is annoying and that there needs to be more water fountains. Granted I should have used my brain and brought some spare water with me. I only encountered the, “You came to the wrong neighborhood M-er F-er” feeling a few times.

The ride itself was pretty enjoyable for the first half. Every time I came upon a road I’ve never traveled down I choose to see where it went. In doing so I ran the risk of getting lost. Which I did, several times. As you can see in the map I had made loops around two different airports before realizing I was lost.

I hated running out of water. I had cotton mouth and was growing irritated that Orlando, which is pretty pedestrian heavy has so few places for public water. Like I said though I should have packed more water for the ride so I can’t just hate the city over it.


Once I did find a water resupply point I filled up and drank from it like I had been stuck in the damn desert for a month. The only way to describe the feeling is to compare it to old Nintendo games when your guy was down to 2 or 3 life lines and you were sure you were going to be game over. Water at least got me back to half life and I continued on my ride.


After the ride.

I kept craving burger king during the ride. Just to keep with the healthy habits I went with subway instead. Jared would be proud! I wonder if he’s into cycling. He doesn’t come across as one. Jerk. I also poured a cookies and creme protein shake down my throat fast enough to feel sick from it afterwards. Took about half an hour before I could feel normal again.

Just for fun my body decided to have an outstanding cramp. My left hamstring locked up and hurt like hell. I thought the muscle was going to snap and leave me auditioning for a part in the life alert commercials. I’m happy to tell you that I survived it and there were pretzels and beer waiting to reward my struggle.



Running red lights without wearing a helmet.

Settling into a new home.

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Sorry that my posts have been few and far between lately. I recently moved to a new location within Orlando and have been working on getting everything situated. Can’t wait to get out on the bike once everything settles and explore past my previous boundaries.

Not divulging my location, but I get the pleasure now of seeing all kinds of skilled drivers around Conroy and Kirkman road. The erratic driving of tourists and pissed off Floridians is outstanding. I’m still trying to wrap my head around the the thought process of those who speed up to 50mph just to pass a car and then slam on their brakes to sit in backed up traffic. Was that one extra spot worth putting yourselves and others at risk? frabz-STUPID-DRIVERS--STUPID-DRIVERS-EVERY-WHERE-154d1f

My riding skills will definitely be put to the test while maneuvering through this part of Orlando. Even walking a couple of miles crossing the roads in this area is like playing Frogger. My first stroll out and I witnessed three separate car accidents within a half hour. Even with all the visible hazards I still watch people putting their lives at risk, especially those on bicycles.

Stupid cyclist.

Not sure the reason, but many of the people that ride bikes throughout downtown Orlando decide not to wear helmets. This is a huge pet peeve of mine. I witnessed one such person on the way home from work one morning. This guy on a bike pulled out into traffic without checking his surroundings. Weaving all over the road and running a red light at a busy intersection. It’s pretty sad when someone like myself who loves cycling has to silently curse about a fellow rider.


My new location is much closer to work so my primary rides won’t be just commuting back and forth to work anymore. I’ll have the chance to ride as a hobby and take pleasure in exploring my area. I’m very paranoid about getting hit by a vehicle in this area, but I believe with time I’ll get used to it and figure out ways to get to safer roads. Cannot wait for those 40-50+ mile rides in my future. Which I need to be doing more of, because unless I get back on the hamster wheel or curb my high intake of calories I’m going to balloon up and become a couch commander.

Excited about the road ahead.


My life always takes twists and turns as I’ve said in my ‘about me’ section. I have a path I’m on and like many trips it’s a little foggy. I know of destinations I’ll come across and goals that come to fruition. Each day bringing me closer to what I desire in life. Just like any new ride the road will be lined with speed bumps, road blocks and unexpected pot holes. As long as I stay focused and determined I believe I can accomplish whatever I actually set my mind to. Tomorrow will be my first real ride in my new neighborhood. Hopefully I’ll make a few new cyclist friends or have some new stories to share. Stay safe out there and keep pedaling!


It’s okay I miss you too!

I’m sorry everyone! I know it’s been a while since my last blog post. This week has been pretty hectic. Instead of working nights I have been working from sun up to sun down.

Diagon Alley is opening soon as I’m sure you’ve already heard. Combine that with the today and tonight show at Universal and you can understand the fun we’re having being in security.

Despite the heat and busy schedule for this week, I am having a good time meeting people and listening to bands play on the Universal concert stage. I mean come on how many times can you go home from work and say you were paid to watch Jimmy Buffet sing Margaritaville?!

I’m looking forward to this weekend because I’ll have a couple much needed days off and have time to spend with my friends.

A couple of updates to keep everyone in the loop.

My little brother just came home from Afghanistan this week safely!

Secondly, this bulls*** in Iraq is going to continue to happen decade after decade. We are a nation that needs to focus on rebuilding the American dream! Not one that needs to try and break up every little pissing match countries thousands of miles away stirs up. We did our part in making sure they had new AMERICAN humvees to drive around in and tried and tested M16 rifles. You’re welcome ISIS. It’s a shame.

Florida has a hit and run problem.

Even the police officers are doing it.

Recently I’ve been seeing a lot in the news about ‘Hit and Run’ incidents. More specifically between vehicles and either pedestrians or cyclists. One of the drivers was even a member of law enforcement. Driving away could mean the difference of life and death for those involved. I understand that in some instances the pedestrians or cyclists were being unsafe. However consider the same situations involving your loved ones. Would you want someone to drive away leaving them on the side of the road? How would you feel about a person after finding out they were the ones that kept driving?

When I tried googling “cyclists killed” or “Pedestrians killed” I was shown results that already included the state or Florida. Titles such as Florida bike deaths lead the nation, or Florida is the deadliest state for walkers and cyclists. Starting to see the problem? For those who are quick to say that it’s the tourists that are causing the problems I can promise it’s not. After almost a year on the streets here It is rare that someone from another state causes me any issues.

Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act

Recently in Tallahassee action has taken place to impose stricter punishments for those involved in these accidents. A driver by the name of Michele Traverso Struck and killed a cyclist, Aaron Cohen. An article in the Tampa Bay Times gives a brief description of the new bill.

SB 102, called the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act, creates a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of four years for a driver convicted of leaving the scene of a fatal crash. The bill also imposes a minimum driver’s license revocation period of at least three years and driver education requirements for people who leave the scene of a crash.

I find this to be an outstanding step in the right direction, but its not enough to just impose fines and strict penalties. I feel the bill should be amended to include a mandatory set of classes that each offender is required to attend in order to get their license reinstated. Clearly the pedestrian and cyclist laws are not being adequately taught to drivers throughout Florida and they need to be.

A new bill introduced.

Over two years ago in Tallahassee a cyclist was struck by a vehicle and subsequently left to die on the side of the road. The driver received a sentence of two years in prison as a result. Mickey Witte, lobbyists and fellow cyclists helped to pass this bill.

A community with a common understanding that this problem needs to be corrected. Aaron Cohen left behind a widow and two children. He also left behind the reminder that roadways aren’t safe.

Drivers in and around the Orlando area.20140514-020353.jpg

I commute back and forth to work 5-6 times a week and this story could have easily been about you or I. I’ve witnessed it several times, the drivers that pay little or no attention to their surroundings. Recently I’ve began keeping track of them here.(Wall of shameful drivers)  You could be on the list…

I know the solution to these accidents can’t be eradicated overnight. I know of a bike route that’s going to stretch across the entire state of Florida that is still in the planning stage. I really hope it comes into fruition soon!

Other states have already put into place new roadways that provide for a safer shared roadway. This is a costly procedure and I don’t expect that it will be completed through most states right away. You can’t put a price on someone’s life however. With the growing cycling community throughout the United States we need to adapt and fit the needs of everyone.

Time to clear up a few misconceptions about cyclists.



Many times I have heard the honks of vehicles or the words, “GET ON THE SIDEWALK” shouted at me. People I’ve talked to have tried to tell me that bicycles on the road is illegal and the roads are meant for cars. WRONG, in fact roads were originally created for bicycles. Read up on the facts. Each state law is different in today’s world and motorists and cyclists would benefit from reading them.

Florida law concerning bicycles: (These are some of them, the rest can be viewed here.)

(1) Every person propelling a vehicle by human power has all of the rights and all of the duties applicable to the driver of any other vehicle under this chapter, except as to special regulations in this chapter, and except as to provisions of this chapter which by their nature can have no application.
(4) No person riding upon any bicycle, coaster, roller skates, sled, or toy vehicle may attach the same or himself or herself to any vehicle upon a roadway. This subsection does not prohibit attaching a bicycle trailer or bicycle semitrailer to a bicycle if that trailer or semitrailer is commercially available and has been designed for such attachment.
(5)(a) Any person operating a bicycle upon a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing shall ride in the lane marked for bicycle use or, if no lane is marked for bicycle use, as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway…
6) Persons riding bicycles upon a roadway may not ride more than two abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles. Persons riding two abreast may not impede traffic when traveling at less than the normal speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing and shall ride within a single lane.
One of the major differences between vehicles and bicycles is that they are not allowed on highways or interstates. Basically if the speed limit is higher than 55 MPH bicycles are prohibited from entering. Which there are signs all throughout Florida has signs designated to let pedestrians and cyclists know.

Unless those with the power to implement more bike lanes or educate the population on a large scale does so, drivers will need to accept the fact that cyclists and pedestrians will from time to time be on the roads. The cowardice act of hitting someone then leaving them on the side of the road is disgraceful. I agree with this new bill because 2 years in prison is not enough. In my opinion it should be weighted the same as vehicular manslaughter.

Everyone out there stay safe! Drivers and cyclists alike. We don’t need to put ourselves in a situation that requires notifying the next of kin.