Sunday, October 06, 2013

Cats, Pirates and Ponds, Pirates, Ponds and Cats, Ponds, Pirates, and Cats


To begin, I must state how happy I am for my hometown Pittsburgh Pirates.  I never left you and followed you even through the worst of years.  I became a Yankee fan while out here, switched divisions and all.  My grandmother was pretty upset when I told her that after only living in the city for a year.  But, grams, I pleaded, possibly over Thanksgiving dinner, the 98' Yankees were an incredible team.  I lived with Carlos then and he was born and raised a Yankee fan and to watch games with him, to see young Mo on our TV that summer was priceless.  Amazing, actually.  See, my grandma would watch Pirates games in the evenings with a meal she had cooked for herself and sip one Iron City beer throughout nine innings.  It was beautiful and her devotion to that team was one never fleeting.  Every fucking night in the summer, there she was: IC Light/dinner/talking to the TV.  I'll never forget that about her and I know, good bless her soul that made it 94 years, that she would be so proud right now.  Yet, she'd be a realist and know that 9 innings of ball is a lot of ball and you can't get too excited about anything until they really win it all.  (Photo above is courtesy of Lee Mazzola and Harvey Hawkens Ehrbar)


Kumo and Apache are getting along pretty well.  Sadly, the only chance I get to take a picture is when they aren't.  The one above is a rarity.  Apache is 6 months old and 98 percent grey.  His nose, which I'm obsessed with, is totally grey.  He is named Apache in homage to Commanche, the best cat I have ever owned, pure black, and was a soul who could read into everything.  His primary motive in life was to provide comfort.  Kumo, my 9-year-old boy has been taking it pretty well.  He is meowing and following me around less.  He is cool with the little guy until he wants to play.  Then, Apache gets defensive and hisses, growls, etc.  Yet, he is growing and sitting at the window as I type staring at busy Washington Avenue, amazed by it all.  He is taking big kitty strides.  Kumo, on the other hand, needs to regress.


Today's ride, a 54-miler, took me to Forest Park, Cunningham Park, Alley Pond Park and then out to Port Washington in Long Island.  It was a great ride at points.  The above photo is from Cunningham Park which connects to Alley Pond Park.  Gorgeous urban, tree-lined trails abounded in both, yet neither are that long.  My riding partner, Joe, told me that some of the oldest trees in NYC exist in these two parks.  All of those parks in the city are awesome to ride, especially if the weather was as shitty as today (so few pedestrians).  It began with a mist  and then a drizzle and then it was just......moist?  Took a smoke break (stupid, I know) about 12-14 miles in and got munched by mosquitos.  There were dozens of trails to veer off on, but we decided to stick to our plan.  Make it to Port Washington.  So, on we rode on Northern Boulevard, which is hairy as all hell, lots of fast-moving traffic, but hills to die for.  At least going down them were to die for.  Climbing them, not so much.  Then you are in Nassau County.  It happens quickly, actually and it is a time when you realize how fucking packed in we are in so little space.  Manhassett is next, which has an old art deco theater I wish I snapped a shot of, but then that would have required stopping and that would have sucked.  Finally, after dips and curves and some more hills you arrive in Port Washington.  It is a quaint, little town and we sat and talked about Sandy.  Had she ruined it?  We looked around at the grass and lack of water damage.  We assumed she hadn't.

And, so another weekend rolled by.  Other good stuff to see some really old, good friends uptown, got news an old friend got a new job doing what she would (really) love and is getting out of a shitty work environment, and I know I have to listen to more of The Fall.

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