Friday, September 29, 2006

Sad News

Hi All,

I'm sorry to have to report that Australia (especially the Gold Coast) is getting more like the USA every day, but in case you haven't heard the terrible news about Tony Nugent, a good friend and colleague of ours, here are some links.,23739,20483440-3102,00.html,22606,20487334-911,00.html

I'm glad they caught the prick that did this and I cannot see how he can be charged as anything but an adult, despite him being 16 years old - if he had the ability to think his way into stealing from someone and then mowing them down in a car, then he's every bit as adult as he needs to be to be tried as one.

Unfortunately, Tony is suffering severe head injuries and his prognosis is poor, at best. This is coming just after Tony started to recover from a previous total bilateral kidney failure a couple of years ago and get on the road to being able to start working again. He was finally starting to see a way out of the forest he had been in for a while, and then this little fucker comes along and takes that away from him.

And how will his mum feel? She saw it happen. I don't know how she's able to sleep, and I hope the prick that caused this can't sleep ever again. What about Tony's 3 children?

It disgusts me that people like his parents - look at the report on his father - are able to raise kids and give them the sort of "me first" attitude that gives them the idea that stealing and then running a human being down in a car whilst making a get away is a reasonable way to live. The prick who did this was capable of his own thoughts and actions, though, and is 100% responsible for what he has done. I just hope that our court system can bring itself to punish the criminal to the fullest extent of the law - there should be no leniency in this case at all - he knew exactly what he was doing.


The Outspoken Wookie

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Freedom at last!

Well, I have just finished a 62 day straight workathon and I finished it in style at the Brisbane Jazz Club. So, then I had a day off, and I'm only part way through that.

A while ago (around 6 or 10 years ago, that is) I said to some friends that I should buy a bike and start cycling again as it was something that I used to enjoy back when I was a fit little fscker at high school, playing 6 competition squash matches a week plus training plus sailing plus school and cycling inbetween all of these. But that's when life was good and I didn't have a care in the world. Things change from when you're 14, so I've found out!

So, I decided to make good on that 6 to 10 years of mouthing off and actually buy a bike. And, since in that 6 to 10 years I have gained the benefits of both a dodgey right knee (medial meniscus issues) as well as 2 bulging discs at L4-L5 and L5-S1 to add to my already questionable C1-C6 issues caused as the result of a major head trauma in high school in April 1987 (yes, dates me, doesn't it?), I thought that a mountain bike with both front and rear shockys would be a good place to start.

I ended up with a Trek Liquid 20 bought 2nd hand from Riders Cyclery at Macgregor. I'd heard only good things about them, so decided to buy from there. I got the bike, some sexy daks and decided to stick with the cleated pedals and got some comfy "I don't want to walk like a duck" Shimano shoes with fitted cleats. It all cost a little more than I'd initially set for myself, but that's life, and I was far from concerned - I intend to do a decent amount of kilometeres each week (like, around 200), so getting a good bike was more important than saving a few bucks.

Well, after some 19 years of not riding a bike, as well as generally being about as unfit as I've been in my life, let me just tell you that there are a few muscles in my legs that wanted to jump out and throttle me this afternoon! I still have to get used to the cleats, mainly getting them locked in, and I think I should have a fire drill on getting them out at very short notice, but I think that I'll be fine with them in a short space of time.

I managed to squeeze about 5.6 km out of my legs today at between 15 kmph and 21 kmph before they wanted to fall off - which, all things considered, I'm happy with. I'm back on it tomorrow and intend to keep up with daily morning rides, sometimes also an evening ride, and the odd longer trip on the weekends.

At least I have a few friends who either ride regularly or used to ride regularly, and me getting on my bike, so to speak, has encouraged a few of them to also get back on theirs. And as there's approximately 520 km of bikeways in Brisbane now, we should all have no real excuses for not getting and staying fit.


The Outspoken Wookie