Sunday, July 29, 2007


Here are the winners of the Tour de France...Cadel Evans on the left was second. Alberto Contador of Discovery was first and his teammate, Levi Leipheimer, was third. Go Discovery!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Contador in yellow...

I should be excited...I am really. Contador, my man from Discovery is in yellow in the Tour. He took the leader's jersey when Rasmussen's team fired him after catching the Dane in a lie. He'd maintained all along that he was in Mexico when the anti-doping forces were looking for him to test his blood and other bodily fluids. Turns out he was in Italy. Naughty Chicken! (His nickname.) So Alberto donned the yellow duds last night and will ride in them today. Go Conti! (Please don't be another druggie.)

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Happy birthday to me...

What a nice birthday gift. Alberto Contador (in 'Best Young Rider' white), a 24-year-old rider for Discovery Channel, won today's stage of the Tour de France and moved into second place just behind Michael Rasmussen (in yellow). Woohoo! And the icing on the (birthday) cake was Levi Leipheimer's move up to fourth place. He's Contador's American teammate. If only they could've pulled George Hincapie, Discovery's faithful "old" New Yorker, along with them. I'd love for him to win something. He deserves it after serving Lance Armstrong for so many years. I guess he got a stage victory last year. That's going to have to do I guess. His hopes are fading this year. He's in 37th place, 40 minutes behind the man in yellow. (Follow the Tour!)

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Another one bites the dust...

My brother Patrick who lives in Russia finally bit the dust. He started a blog. Ha! He resisted for a long time, but he has succumbed.

Visit him at

Post a comment making fun of his blog. LOL!

Thursday, July 19, 2007's why!

Yesterday I wrote about my recovery ride. Here's why I take it easy the day after a hard effort...

This morning, I pushed my riding up another notch. I knocked out 21.64 miles at 19.7mph. I was at 19.8mph until the last quarter mile or so. I just couldn't hold on to that tenth against a stiffening south wind.

Still, this ride was my third best non-wind-assisted ride ever. I rode 23.37 miles at 19.7 in April 2006 and I sprinted to a 19.8mph average over 10.68 miles in August of the same year.

Today was a painful sort of way. If only I could get a group of guys to ride with me at that pace. Argh!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Hard to please...

Got this email from a friend recently...

Soon after my wife and I met, she mentioned how she really wished that she could afford a riding lawnmower. She was a single gal that worked all day and was often tired in the evening when she got home from work. So, being the handy sort of guy that I was, I made her a riding lawnmower. I guess I thought she would squeal with delight and give me a big hug. To this day I have never been able to understand why women are so hard to please.

I love it!

See what God can do...

I went to visit Marjorie in her new home in Wellington this week. She seemed as happy as could be in her cheerily decorated, two-room apartment. That didn’t surprise me. Marjorie’s not much of a complainer. She always makes the best of life.

Somehow our conversation turned to what she was doing. She talked about all the free time she had – free time to pray. She’s keeping busy on the church's behalf.

Marjorie’s down-the-hall neighbor, Jane, has told me dozens of times that she does the same. Jane prays for all the folks in Argonia every night. She prays throughout the day as God brings friends to mind.

God’s church is blessed with an abundance of men and women dedicated to the spiritual protection and blessing of their brothers and sisters in Christ. Many of them pray every morning for those they know who are in need. They count it a privilege to take their friends’ troubles to the throne of God in heaven. God is pleased to listen to and answer their petitions.

Prayer matters. A prayer-weak church is a plain weak church. No church can survive long without the consistent and persistent prayers of its members.

Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” (Matthew 7:7, NIV)

He’s calling his followers to action. Ask. Seek. Knock. Those are all active verbs. Prayer is not doing nothing! It is not thinking wishfully out loud. It is not playing “I hope so” with the Almighty. Prayer is actively pursuing the God who loves us for the things we and others need. It’s vigorous. Intense.

After Jesus said, “Ask…seek…knock,” he went on to say: “For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Matthew 7:8, NIV)

There’s a promise here. Don’t miss it. God will answer the prayers of his people. He’s given his word. Ask…receive. Seek…find. Knock…doors open.

The only time I know of in the Bible when God says, “You can’t have what you’ve asked for,” is when you’re asking selfishly.

“You do not have, because you do not ask God,” James writes. “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” (James 4:2-3, NIV)

“Which of you,” Jesus asked, “if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” (Matthew 7:9-11, NIV)

God is good. He wants to bless his children. He wants to answer their prayers.

I want you to think of a situation you’re facing right now. Anything. A delightful thing. A disastrous thing. God wants you to pray about that thing – whatever came to your mind first. He wants to hear from you. He wants to act on your behalf. He wants to help. Take your circumstances to God. Do it now. Don’t rush things. Lay it all out before the Lover of your soul. See what God can do.

To receive my once or twice weekly message via email, send a blank email to Past messages are available at


Yesterday I soloed 20.18 miles on my Giant Sedona at 18.6mph. It was hard work. I was ready to quit at times. It wore me out. My legs were buzzed.

So this morning I rode recovery - same miles, 20.12, but a much more reasonable 16.3mph pace. I rode the entire time seated in a lower gear...didn't stand up on hills. My legs will be happier tomorrow, more willing to endure torture again, because I rested today.

There's a life lesson here. When you're working your tail off, busy as all get out, you need time to recover. Rest is not sin, friend. Take a break some time this week. Nap. Enjoy a hobby. Walk. Chat with a neighbor. Pray. Laugh. Visit the library.

To receive my once or twice weekly message via email, send a blank email to Past messages are available at

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Two days to go...

On Friday morning, July 14, a rather intense competition will take place in Clearwater, Kansas...the final swim meet of the Ark Valley Swim League. Argonia's team will be there along with four other teams - Clearwater (Argonia's chief rival due to sheer numbers), Conway Springs, Belle Plaine and Mulvane. Fifty or so kids from 67004-land will swim their hearts out for individual glory and for team pride. Will they pull off the upset and finally beat Clearwater in home water? Only time will tell.

At the Mulvane meet on June 30 they pulled off a 55-point victory, 391 to 346, against Clearwater with far fewer swimmers in the pool. A few years ago that was the stuff of dreams.

I watched the Argonia kids in the pool today. Practice was hard. They worked! Yesterday's times were the best of the year. They're peaking at the right time.

Can't wait to see what Saturday brings.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Overkill: A Haiku

Stupid bug buzzing.
Poorly aimed deathblow breaks glass.
Bug taunts crying man.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Monday, July 9, 2007

Horseshoes, hand grenades and...

Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades...or so the old saying says. I beg to differ. Close counts in biking too. I have had close encounters with all sorts of critters. This week on vacation I added several new animals to my nearly missed list. They're marked with an asterisk below. These recent meetings inspired me to post the following list.

Animals I Have Nearly Hit:
  • Beetle
  • Box Turtle*
  • Canadian Goose*
  • Caterpillar
  • Chipmunk*
  • Deer
  • Dog (Duh!)
  • Duck*
  • Possum
  • Rabbit
  • Skunk
  • Snake*
  • Snapping Turtle* (very large)
  • Squirrel

Most of these have run (or slithered) out in front of me along U.S. Highway 160, but a few have stepped into harm's way on back roads and bike trails.

Animal lovers, please note! I DID NOT HIT ANY OF THESE CREATURES! Don't write to me and tell me how cruel I am. Please.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Reformed blog...

My brother set up a blog not too long ago...lots of discussion of Reformed theology and the decisions of the Christian Reformed Church.