Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Food for thought!

I listened to this story on "The Story" by Dick Gordon on NPR on my ride back home tonight. Check it out and I believe you might find it interesting!

Beyond Dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico

riki ottRiki Ott
When Riki Ott heard about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, it brought back a nightmare she’s lived with for the past 21 years. Riki was fishing for salmon in Cordova, Alaska in 1989 when the Exxon Valdez ran aground and dumped millions of gallons of crude oil into Prince William Sound. At the time, she hadn't told many people in Alaska that she had a PhD in marine toxicology, but that knowledge helped her as the community took stock of the damage and made sure the voices of the fishermen were heard. Now she’s in Louisiana to help citizens and fishermen there deal with the aftermath of the Gulf spill. One of Riki's biggest concerns is about the potential dangers of chemicals dispersants.

Peace :)

Beyond Dispersants in the Gulf —

I listened to this story on "The Story" by Dick Gordon on NPR on my ride back home tonight. Check it out and I believe you might find it interesting!


Beyond Dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico

riki ottRiki Ott
When Riki Ott heard about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, it brought back a nightmare she’s lived with for the past 21 years. Riki was fishing for salmon in Cordova, Alaska in 1989 when the Exxon Valdez ran aground and dumped millions of gallons of crude oil into Prince William Sound. At the time, she hadn't told many people in Alaska that she had a PhD in marine toxicology, but that knowledge helped her as the community took stock of the damage and made sure the voices of the fishermen were heard. Now she’s in Louisiana to help citizens and fishermen there deal with the aftermath of the Gulf spill. One of Riki's biggest concerns is about the potential dangers of chemicals dispersants.

Peace :)

Monday, May 24, 2010

Oak Cliff, here I come!

On Saturday 5/22/2010, I rode to Oak Cliff, just for the heck of it. Why not, it was a great day to ride like any other day! My bike computer registered 56 miles or so.

I saw this flower bush near Marsh. I am not sure what kind it is. I thought it might be a Oleander, but I am not sure. Anybody?
I stopped at REI Dallas to use the facilities and to fill-up my water bottles. They had a 20% off sale going on and the place was packed. I got out of there in a heartbeat so I can be out during the nice sunny part of the day. However, I did stop to check out the merchandise on my way back. BTW, check out the cool Raleigh in the picture with rod brakes and all, just like my dad's.
Out on Northaven Road, I saw this nice bike parked right on the driveway. It was heartening to see a bike parked outside without anybody keeping an eye on it or locking it up. In my old neck of the woods, St. Louis city, this bike would have been "repossessed" by someone else, just like that.
From Airline and Mockingbird, I rode the KT Trail to get to  Victory Park. The trail was busy with lots of bicyclist and pedestrians. Lots of dogs, YES!
The tail-end of the KT trail near Victory Park is pictured below. I think they are protecting the wildflowers on the trail, which I think is great. Texas has some amazing wildflowers. You can see more pictures of Texas wildflowers here and here.
My landlord in St. Louis was very nice. He let his tenants have as many animals as they wanted to as long as they took care of them and the flat. I see the trend in renting is taking a positive turn. This is great news for pet owners, especially if they happened to own a large pet and had to rent.
The reflection of the clouds in the water caught my eye. Plus, the statue was a fine one too.
I believe this is Houston street just a block or two before getting on the Houston Street Viaduct!
Downtown Dallas from the Houston Street Viaduct. The Houston Street Viaduct is quite a beautiful one. I like this part of Dallas. In my humble opinion, the Houston Street Viaduct connects the very nice, rustic parts of Dallas with its modern downtown. There is more information about the Houston Street Viaduct, here.
Yet another view of downtown Dallas from the Houston Street Viaduct!
A view of Dallas's umpteen highways from the viaduct.
If you ride south on Jefferson after the Houston Street Viaduct, it takes you into Oak Cliff. I like the historic parts of Oak Cliff. They remind me of St. Louis, especially the City. Pictured here is the interior of Spiral Diner, one of my favorite eateries in the DFW metro. The bikes you see parked are the bikes of the employees. I secured mine to the dedicated bike rack using my Kryptonite New York LS.
They always have some really cool dishes at Spiral Diner. Here is their menu, check it out! BTW, cute kitty!
For lunch, I ordered the Parmigiana Wrap. It added a bit of color to my day, shall we say? :)
The outside of Spiral Diner in Oak Cliff. Very nice indeed!
Spiral Diner is at intersection of Beckley and Zang in Oak Cliff. In the distance, you can see the skyscrapers of downtown Dallas.
After my scrumptious lunch, I rode to the Bishop Arts district in Oak Cliff. There are a few nice stores on Bishop Ave. Of particular interest to me was The Epiphany Boutique. I bought myself a BFOC T Shirt from there. If you rode your bike to The Epiphany Boutique, you get 10% off BFOC merchandise. The shop is quite interesting and they sell some really cool clothing. You should check it out if your travels take you to Bishop!
The Trinity river as seen from the Zand street bridge!
Another view of Dallas Skyline, this time from the Zand Street bridge :)
After my exploration of Oak Cliff, I rode back to Irving, with a quick stopover at REI Dallas to check out the sale merchandise. Pictured below is Hwy 635, which is busy much of the time. Boy was I glad I wasn't driving :)
Hope your weekend was a fun one!

Peace :)

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Y'all are my sunshine...

We are all gathered here, in the info-space, to share our ideas about food and health, to cherish and to rejoice each others recipes and ideas...

I was very honored today when I received the Sunshine Award from Vivacious-Vegan.

The Sunshine Award is awarded to bloggers whose positivity & creativity inspires others in the blog world.
The rules for accepting this award are:-

Put the logo on your blog or within your post.
Pass the award onto 12 bloggers.
Link the nominees within your post.
Let the nominees know they have received this award by commenting on their blog.
Share the love and link to the person from whom you received this award.

I am delighted to share this award with you my dears:

My angel wife from AngelSoap, not only are you an artist but you also are an excellent cook. You have been kind enough to share some of your recipes and the dishes with me. I love you and I am fortunate to have you in my life. So, I present you the Sunshine Award!

Vivacious-Vegan, you gave me inspiration to start blogging about my food. While I have posted some of my food recipes on my cycling blog, I give you credit for the inspiration. Your blog always is great to read, although, as I have admitted in the past, not a good blog to read late at night (makes me hungry). So, you my dear, are my next recipient of the Sunshine Award!

Vegan-Epicurean, your recipes rock! We follow your blog and we love it. We are pleased to give you the Sunshine Award!

Papaya-Chronicles, your blog is lovely and I love reading your recipes. Your blog also makes me super hungry so I try not to visit at night. It is my honor to give you the Sunshine Award!

Richard, your blog always makes me think and many times puts a smile on my face. I always seem to learn something new from you and I thank you for the same and I am honored to award you the Sunshine Award!

Peter, your cause is simply awesome! I don't have enough words to express the happiness your journey brings me (and a whole bunch of us). Your determination humbles me. I am honored to award you the Sunshine Award!

Myles, you have introduced me to some fine fellas in Texas. I would not have met some of our mutual friends without you. You deserve the Sunshine Award, mon ami!

Meli, I simply love your blog and those awesome photos of Cappuccinos. Your blog makes me smile and makes me feel many years younger. Keep up the great work, my friend! I am delighted to present you the Sunshine Award!

Steve, your blog always has valuable content and is always very nicely written. I have learned a bunch of things from your blog. I am very pleased to present you the Sunshine Award!

Chris, you bring peace, calm and piety to cycling! Amen!! I simply love your blog. I am extremely happy to give you the Sunshine Award!

Vik, you an encyclopedia of bicycling, especially the modern day craft! I have learned so much about different bicycles and outdoor products from your blog. I am delighted to present you the Sunshine Award!

Stu, the adventure you have undertaken is simply way cool! I love reading your blog, checking out your phenomenal photographs and reading all about your trip. I am very happy to present you the Sunshine Award!

Thank you all for your contributions which have enriched my life in more ways than I can explain.

Peace :)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Handlebar Grips

A few weeks ago, I dropped Meera on the sidewalk, while I stepped away from her for a minute. The wind blew her down and having a basket full of groceries on the back didn't help that either. Anyways, to cut the long story short, during this catastrophe, the original handlebar grips that hit the sidewalk cracked and broke apart.

I was gonna order some grips that resembled the original ones from Harris Cyclery, but, I got these really cool Brooks handlebar grips from my friend Ryan. He bought it off a bicycle store in Dallas (taken off a bike that they were parting out). My cost was $15. Much better compared to retail of $90. I am stoked.
The color of the new grips don't match the color of the black Brooks saddle on Meera but I think I can live with that :)

Peace :)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Photos from Irving Bicycle Fest!

I volunteered for the Irving Bicycle Fest yesterday. It was at Centennial Park in South Irving, not too far from the TRE. I got there around 9:30 AM to setup. Marc and Joel who got there earlier had already setup the course for the Bike Rodeo for kids. My objective was to be a good gopher and I think I did pretty good.
The kids learned lane discipline, stopping at STOP signs and observing traffic rules and watching out for traffic. I would say there were probably around 20 kids who participated in the Bike Rodeo. They all got a nice certificate.

One of my friends from work had brought her two kids along and they participated in the Bike Rodeo. I also helped fix some of the problems with my friend's kid's bike and also try to teach the kid how to ride a bike. Mr. Bob Chaplin, one of the LCI's had brought some extra kids' helmets and he was kind enough to give my friend's daughter one which fit her head much better than the one she had brought with her. Thanks, Bob!

A whole bunch of growed-up kids from Carrolton came by and they also rode the Bike Rodeo path for validation or something like that, though I personally think the kids showed more self-control :)
There were some very cool bikes. One such a bike was this Mercier, with the original MAFAC brakes and all. It was missing the front fender but it was a fine bike.
Ms. Gail Spann, my TS101 instructor, brought two adorable Penny Farthings. They apparently belonged to her grand kids. They were fine machines!
There was bicycle parking available and two fine lasses from the Girl Scouts watched our bikes. I did lock Gikma to the bike rack, just to play it safe.
I met Steve A at the event. He was making fine adjustments to his front derailleur and tested it by test driving his bike to Irving. It was good to see you Steve!
City of Irving also helped with this event.

BikeDFW wrapped up the event around noon. This event was a really fun event and I was so happy that I could volunteer to do something fun and good.

After a quick stop at a really nice all vegetarian Indian buffet, Pakvan, on O'Connor near 183, I rode back to Valley Ranch. I think this joint is new and the food and the service was simply outstanding. I hope they keep up the good work.
The beautiful mustangs of downtown Irving!
Downtown Las Colinas and its beautiful canal!
I rode the Campion trail back home and met this rather deceptively fast friend on the trail!
Peace :)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Irving Bicycle Fest!

BikeDFW brings you the infamous Irving Bicycle Fest . Don't miss out the fun and frolic for the entire family.
Here are the details:

Irving Bicycle Fest

Saturday, May 15, 2010
10 AM-12 PM
Centennial Park
444 West Second St., Irving, TX
BikeDFW will be putting on a bike safety rodeo for kids.

Peace :)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Chickpea Salad!

Tonight we had Chickpea Salad for dinner!

Ingredients:
Green Onion 3 stalks
Red Bell Pepper (half)
Parsley 1 Tsp
Dill 1 Tbsp
Sea salt - a pinch
Cayanne Pepper (to taste)
Dijon Style Mustard
Veganaise 1 Tbsp
Organic Garbanzo Beans (1 can rinsed)
Avacado
10 Cashews

Preparation:
Mix all ingredients, gently, in a large bowl and let sit for an hour so the ingredients marry.

Served on a bed of chiffonade spinach and served in a Red Cabbage bowl!

Bon appetit!

Peace :)

Click-Stand Max Review!

Recently, I ordered a Click-Stand Max for the Thorn Nomad MK2. There are different types of Click-Stand. I got the Click-Stand Max which is recommended for Tandems and Touring Bikes.

My Click-Stand Max came in the mail last week and I didn't get a chance to actually test it until today. While today's test was not one involving a loaded touring bike, it was testing my expedition touring bike with the Arkel TailRider on it.
Here is a list of things I about the Click-Stand Max I wanted to learn first-hand.
  1. Is it really easy to use?
  2. How well does it support the bike?
  3. How easy is it to carry?
Here are my observations:

Ease of Use
  • The Click-Stand is really easy to use. All you have to do is to unfold the Click-Stand and place your bike's top tube in the U-shaped portion of the Click-Stand.
  • Attach the Brake-Bands. I personally recommend using both the Brake-Bands on both brakes, especially if your bike is a heavier one, such as a touring bike.
 
  • Voila' - you are done!
Stability of the Click-Stand
I tested the stability of the Click-Stand by parking my bike with it on a paved surface and also on a non-paved grassy area. In both areas the Click-Stand supported my bike very well. It was not a very windy day but I was out in the open where there was a bit of a strong breeze and that did not affect the Click-Stand's stability. As I mentioned earlier, I will test the Click-Stand when my bike is loaded as well.

Easy to Carry?
The Click-Stand is very easy to carry along. The Click-Stand is very light weight (approximately 100 grams for the Click-Stand Max, perhaps the heaviest of all Click-Stand products). The Click-Stand folds really compactly (approximately 10" in length). While the manufacturer offers an elegant solution (widget) that facilitates attaching the Click-Stand to your bike, I simply stuck it in my Arkel TailRider.
So far, I am very satisfied with the Click-Stand Max and I give it a Thumbs-Up!

Peace :)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Naturally in South Padre Island!

We just got back from a week in the lovely South Padre Island (SPI). If you are a vegetarian/vegan and if you have to go to SPI, fear not Mon Ami, about the availability of vegetarian and vegan foods. For all your healthy food needs, in SPI, I strongly recommend going to Naturally's on Padre Blvd.
Naturally's has a healthy, mouthwatering menu. Here are a couple of dishes we ordered.

Behold the Beeching Burrito! Mucho vegetarian and yummy-licious!
And, presenting The Naturally Yours Salad,  the mother of all salads! Skip the Feta cheese if you want to avoid dairy!
Last, but not the least important, Veggies Galore & Soy Mozzarella on Rosemary Foccaccia:
The atmosphere at Naturally's is quite casual and it is very relaxing. In addition to a great restaurant, they also sell healthy foods and some books to feed the hungry mind. The food was so healthy, this man changed drastically from looking like this...
to looking like this... 
Y'all know what I mean? :)

Naturally's also cater to those who want to eat dishes with meats in them. So, I would not call it a vegetarian restaurant. We ate at Naturally's about 6x during our stay of 1 week in SPI and we loved it.


Even our cat got suspicious and tried to spy on us. See below and you will know what I mean :)

Peace :)

PS. I have no monetary interest in Naturally's.