James Pearl Thinks Blogging is Dead


Well-Known Member
Team MTBNJ Halter's
I have been sporadically riding the bike as best I can but I feel awful when I push at all. Yesterday I was hoping to do a solid 2 hour tempo ride. After 1:11 I wanted to shoot myself in the face. Today I dialed it back to super low effort and rode for 2 hours with no issue. But any effort is just a ton of pain. I don't know what the hell this process does to you, but it sucks. This week sucks.
do you think riding for any extend duration and intensity is derailing your recovery? do you need to scale it back, get healthy and then step back on the pedal to hone your fitness for a later CX peak and nationals? sounds like some major trauma your body is working through.


Mayor McCheese
Team MTBNJ Halter's

I think it's probably having some impact. When I write the word "impact" it makes me think of the IT equation that Priority = Impact * Urgency. Something has a high Priority if the Impact is large and the Urgency is large, and only then. For those who are not familiar with this, let me define those terms. Impact means the number of people it effects. If it's just me, the impact is low. Urgency means how bad it is. So if the mail server goes down for the company, this is sort of P1 since it is high impact, high urgency.

I will stop here because the above is total nonsense as it pertains to me as an individual. Since the Impact is always 1 for a system defined as "self", this just means that P=U. PU, your analogy stinks. Sorry, I got off the rail there.

The event you quote was my coming to terms with the fact that yes, I am likely derailing myself. It was at this point that I dialed it back and let the ride(s) come to me. The next 2 days were better. And I need to let it happen as it happens. This coming weekend is what it is, and as I write this I am sitting in the back of the car with D, while Mark drives and Alex talks on the phone with work. We left New Jersey with the blob of gray melancholy hanging over the state. It is clear blue sky where we are now. We'll be in Rutland in about an hour. Today is Pine HIll.

My point is that this coming weekend of riding is an escape back to Vermont, away from the melancholy of New Jersey weather, and the drone of low-impact jaw pain. I need this escape right now more than anything (this is an overused overstatement, I know). Ok so maybe not more than anything but my house right now is just this comfort zone of discomfort. I bounce between the kitchen table, the living room couch, the other couch, the office chair, and the office couch. Through my day I cannot find anywhere I am 100% comfortable because no matter where I am, I bring the discomfort with me.

Side note that my allergies have been acting up, which adds to the headache factor.

I am cautiously optimistic that things will be at least a little better Monday. I'm sure I'll let you know. Good luck this weekend.


Dropped off the kids at school this morning and hit the road to Alex & Mark's house, arriving just before 10:00. We tooled around the house a bit before leaving - Alex was on a call then I had a call at 10. We got out around 11:30 and hit the road with a full car. We meandered north and the sky went from drab gray to beautiful blue. We bounced around working on & off through the drive. Uneventful ride, though working in the car made me feel a little crappy at one point so I stopped working and just looked out the window at the blue sky and talked.

Not New Jersey:


Got to Pine Hill around 4:30 and dipped into the trails for about an hour. System there is a lot of fun. We didn't hit everything but today was just a teaser to the weekend. It's hard to sit in the car for so long and not go a little stir crazy.

Overlook trail:


Dinner was Roots in Rutland, a place they have been to a few times. Food was outstanding - add it to your list. I am tired and it's late, so I don't have a lot of juice to wrote much about it. I got cod and everyone else got steak. And we all shared beef poutine. Winning!

D got dessert, of which I was forced to eat some:


Alex drove from Rutland to Ascutney, and we are staying at an Airbnb that is literally in the middle of the trail system here. So I found out today that Ascutney is an abandoned ski hill, which is sort of a concept that I find hard to believe given how much people ski in the state. We are staying in an old ski lodge on the side of the hill. Currently we're trying to put together a big loop for tomorrow, based on the 2 links @JDurk posted above.

We're the blue dot. That's where our ski lodge is:



Well-Known Member
Team MTBNJ Halter's
I've been to Pine Hill and Roots, which are 2 of Rutlands best. Rutland is kinda cool because you're in this little city but there are these great mountains in the back ground that call you to come play in them.

I don't think Killington is on your agenda but they do have some awesome flow trails near the bottom, that are Kingdom like.

Also check out ski shops in the area for xc skis, they may have deals this time of year. If you buy, be prepared for Mark an Alex to curse you on the way home, as you wrestle 185cm skis into a car carrying 4 adults.


Mayor McCheese
Team MTBNJ Halter's
I'm late in taking pen to paper here, so I'm going to give a quick rundown of the day. This will have to be the 15 minute version because it's almost 11:00 and we're getting up early and heading out tomorrow pretty early.

Notes on the day

* Slept until 7:00, and had the best night of sleep since I have had this mess done to my jaw. Was not perfect but felt pretty good overall.
* Drank coffee and sat on the couch for 2 hours this morning, then got ready to ride at 10:00
* Rolled out around 10. The trails are literally 100 yards from the condo.
* The weather is AMAZING here. You should come up now.
* Overall, loop we did here:
* Today is, by FAR, the best I have felt on a bike in a while
* Both yesterday and today I felt I left something in the tank after the ride, which again, has not happened in almost 2 weeks
* Overall, Ascutney is awesome. I really enjoyed this park and I would sign up to come back for a 2-day all-Ascutney trip in a heartbeat.
* The climbing here is legit, yet it is all done so well you don't suffer for it. It does not ruin the ride by punching you in the face
* The trails are really well done, but they are also challenging which I liked a lot.
* Best trail was South Ridge Run. This was a unanimous choice for the 4 of us, and Mark said it may be his favorite trail ever
* We met 2 women who work with VMBA, and they said there are a bunch of trails off-map that we should check out someday
* I also donated $20 to the VMBA in exchange for their map
* Again, we have a great group with the 4 of us. Really enjoy this crew
* Alex went off the hook with her choice of riding shorts today. See pic below
* After the ride we went back to the house and had turkey sandwiches, a pot of coffee, and showered up
* Went into Woodstock to grab some ice cream & supplies for dinner
* Back at the house they made dinner while I sat on the couch and wrote
* Dinner was a pasta concoction plus salad plus squash. Really good.
* After dinner I cleaned up. No cook = clean up
* Then we played cards until now.
* We are leaving the house early to hit Thunder Mountain in the morning



Mayor McCheese
Team MTBNJ Halter's
It's Monday morning. By the time we got back & done with dinner & shower & such, it was 11:00 and I didn't have it in my to sit down and write this. I'll recap real quick.

Woke up in the Ascutney Airbnb at 6am. Made coffee, mulled around briefly, then Alex was up to make pancakes. Ate pancakes, cleaned up, packed, and we were out the door by 7:45, just off the stated goal from yesterday of 7:30.

Didn't sleep as much as the night before. My jaw was hurting just a bit more. And I had a headache that was nagging me, and my bag with my allergy meds had disappeared from the previous day. Not a great start. I pounded it with coffee but that didn't seem to help.

Got to Thunder by 7:30 and pulled in behind @Robin. Said hellos and such, then took a while getting ready as the sun made its presence known. It was going to be a hot day today.

There was a college DH event, maybe some ECCC thing? So the place was pretty mobbed. I am not well-versed in this, so the wait was far greater than anything I have ever experienced, which made it really hard for me to get in a groove today. I was also on the Scalpel, which is not the right bike for this place. I had mounted a new rear tire on the RIP last week. But like literally everything to do with that POS bike, it didn't work and the brand new Stans valve was leaking. I am so done with that bike, and shit not working. Everything I do with it is like, forgive the analogy, pulling teeth. So I brought Ted instead.

Wrong choice. Did I mention this bike has a bald rear tire and no brakes left? It works for 99% of New Jersey. And at Ascutney, it wasn't perfect but it was fine. Today it wasn't ideal. See the headache comment above. I had deliberated renting a bike. But it seemed like too much effort so I skipped it. In hindsight, I should have rented.

We did 7 runs in all, stopping after #3 for lunch at the lodge, where I ate a veggie burger which tastes yummy. I felt better for 1 run after that, but shortly after fell into my half-assed riding style of the day. I think on run #6 things clicked a bit more after I slowly went ass over tea kettle on Harold's Ramis (whatever it's called) and just got pissed at the bike and started riding it like I DGAF if it broke in half. I just slammed it into everything, regardless of what that anything was.

Thunder was a learning experience on myself yesterday. I was lazy in many regards in the paragraphs above. And my skill/experience/fitness was not able to cover that yesterday and I paid for it by not having as good a time as I could have. I'm glad we went, because this is an itch we've been meaning to scratch for 2 years. But now I know the next time I do this, I need to be better prepared.

Also, not to be totally downplayes was that my jaw pain was back for most of the day and I had a lingering headache from waking up to going to bed. Fall allergies I suppose.

Then we hopped in the car, stopped at a coffee shop where I got "chocolate bread" which is a Massachusetts euphemism for "cake made in a bread pan" and drove back to NJ with a stop in NY to get our car at Alex & Mark's.

We love these weekends, and this one was no different. @2Julianas and @MurderBort are always great companions and this is another great trip in the books with them. I look forward to their future purchase of a suburban with a tow trailer, so we can bring 8 bikes and a maid/butler with us. I also look forward to the next trip we have planned, the long Thanksgiving weekend with them out in Pittsburgh. That should be fun. And I'll make sure my bikes work properly. Well, unless it snows, in which case we will be bringing skis & snowshoes.

Ok, the bell is ringing. Tea & oatmeal are done. Time to start the Monday.

Mark got bumped to another lift this cycle, so it's just the 3 of us here.



Mayor McCheese
Team MTBNJ Halter's
I slept really well last night. Like 8 hours of really well. That was nice. I enjoy waking up and writing every morning but sometimes I need to sleep, and today was 1 of those days. I woke up and knocked out the yesterday blog post real quick. I can write other stuff later.

@seanrunnette - the thing about jousting is that the jousters need a target. It's easier for them if the target doesn't have armor.

@pooriggy the difference is that East Burke is buffed out to the max, and the Scalpel is pretty dialed to that kind of riding. Plus I imagine the tires were better, the brakes worked, and it wasn't falling apart. I would love to get a new bike, many bikes, but the reality is that we have a wedding coming up and I'll be installing a new bike into my face when I get more dental work done in the next 6 months or so. Ignoring that, I need to save this bike for when Zac briefly passes through the large stage. At that point, I'll get a new bike and he can beat the piss out this one on his way to an XL frame and beyond, if needed.

We have less than 3 weeks to the wedding so shit is starting to ramp up. Made an appointment for the marriage license for this Thursday.

We were going to go to CR today but long story short, the rain bagged that.

Before that happened, I went back into the dungeon to try and get this RIP rear tire to seal on this rim. First attempt did not work. Ok I let it go, then go back up to work. The thing to note here is that the bead pops back on every time, and I get a leak that you can hear. So the bead pops on, then comes right off. Not good. I work a bit then go back to the dungeon and try again, this time putting in another small bottle of Stans. This is the 4th bottle. It doesn't work. And it then starts just pissing out Stans like everywhere.

It is at this stage of the day that I totally and completely have a meltdown. Like Michael Douglass, in Falling Down, fashion. I take the bike off the stand and throw it out the dungeon door. Then I walk out and pick the bike up and hurl it across the lawn. I let it lay there and think about what it has done. I walk back into the dungeon and look at the clock, randomly, because I genuinely want to know what time it is. Mind you, this clock has stopped and started working randomly for the last year. It says 5:30pm. I smash it with a sledgehammer because fuck this clock.

I then mow the lawn. Then weed wack. Then I blow the sidewalk & porch & back patio. Then I put a tube in the tire, it'll have to do. Shortly after that it starts to pour.

I later get on Zwift and ride for 2 hours. I felt good enough to push the whole time and my jaw only hurt a little bit. In the @taylor185 scale of "how stupid is this?" the answer was, not that stupid. I think I am almost healed. On that note, I only took Advil this morning when I got up and then after the ride. I did not need it to survive the day.

It's only Monday.


Well-Known Member
Staff member
Team MTBNJ Halter's
I imagine all the years as a race promoter are paying off preparing for the wedding:
getting the permits, deciding where to put the feedzone,
downgrading Mitch to the kiddie table.

And we are really digging The Five.
We just got to the first big reveal in epi 6-
I know there is more coming in the last 4 episodes,
and I think you mentioned a follow up season?
Yeah, I can't imagine how they would line things up for that,
and they really just shouldn't.

Regarding the wheel,
have you tried turning it off and back on again?