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Velominatus: johnthughes

Order: Level 3 Velominatus

Location: Antwerpen, Belgium

American in Belgium....with luck, permanently.

@johnthughes's activity:

Het Volk (it will always be Het Volk to me) and now the Strade Bianche may well mark the sentimental beginning to the season, but those are specialized, pre-season races that appeal mostly to riders who are preparing for bigger objectives later in the year, such as the Cobbled or Ardennes Classics. Same goes for Tirreno Adriatico and Paris-Nice; t...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. @johnthughes Revoted as I am stupid and kittel is not starting »

  2. VSP PICKS: 1. Cavendish 2. Sagan 3. Boonen 4. Degenkolb 5. Greipel »

  3. As a matter of preference it would be “Boonen, Cavendish, Kwiatkowski, Phinney,Sagan”…but then there is reality. Seems like a sprinter year. VSP PICKS: 1. Cavendish 2. Sagan 3. Kittel 4. Degenkolb 5. Greipel »

Wind is an asshole. I have no patience left for it. It has all of it been used up, gone, finished. It is the only force that I’m aware of (with the possible exception of gravity) that is more stubborn and less willing to listen to reason than I myself am. It blows me around on my bike, it embezzles speed from my Magnificent Stroke. No matter...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. Ahh, Seattle. The Flanders of the US. Almost moved there once upon a time. This weekend was glorious in Belgium, but two weekends ago it was all about the wind. One long solo ride nearly all kanaal work. 110km and all it did was get worse and worse until… »

The most important moment in a man’s life is the first time they have a beer. I place it on the list above sex and having a child because sex usually only happens as a direct result of drinking beer. As for having children, I’m given to understand they are poop factories at first, then promptly become loud, and then obnoxious before the...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. When I was in NYC it was a lot of drinking, eating, and no sleep, and then getting on a bike in the morning with a massive hangover, trying not to purge on the guys behind you. Then I moved to the motherland and joined a club and found out that if I did t… »

I’m a non-climber who enjoys climbing. I’d enjoy it more if I was good at it. And “enjoy” might be too strong a word, “tolerate” might be better. But dragging 89 kilos up a volcano gives one time to contemplate the cycling life .Let us define non-climber. It’s someone either too fat, too big (gravitationally challenged) or a fast- twi...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. @Dfitz Doing it myself at the end of June, but not the fondo, just my club taking over a hotel in the Bormio, spending a week riding the climbs, and finishing everything out with the Stelvio on the last day. I am looking forward to it with both anticipa… »

I recently overheard someone say that there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing. This is the kind of statement that makes me want to hate people as a species a little bit. Of course there such a thing as bad weather. There are also bad people (loads of them), bad ideas (even bigger loads of them), bad advice (especially on the inter...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. @the Engine I have been there a number of time for work and because I have some very close friends there. It’s basically one of them that is making me an offer I am not sure I can refuse. Yeah, the work is in the north suburbs(god I even hate typing… »

  2. @johnthughes Because editing isn’t possible, I feel I should correct something….it should be a “…Vlaamse making her way…”, the LvdK is most definitely now and always has been a woman, I did not mean to imply, by my fledgling grasp her mother tongu… »

  3. Between the Nanoflex and Gabba I wear during the late, off, and early season here you would think I was a rolling Castelli billboard….but I wouldn’t live without it. It is *litterally* my Flandrian Best. That said, life may be taking me temporarily out… »

I’ve never been able to decide if choices are a gift or a curse; a lack of choices introduces simplicity but also with it the risk that the simple choices do not meet the demands of a complex world. An abundance of similar choices, on the other hand, often reduces the impact of getting things a little bit wrong, but also decreases the thought...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. ^^^^^^^ Have to remember to log in before posting =) John(the American in Belgium) »

  2. At 42 years old(43 in march, ouch), 15kg over(at least, though should be down 8-10kg by summer), and with the last 133km of Ronde van Vlaanderen, the whole 167km of the La Chouffe Classic in the Ardennes, and a week with my club in Bormio with the last da… »

Disregarding my Schwinn Typhoon, I started keeping score with my 1976 Peugeot PX 10 LE. It came with a Stronglight 52 x 45 and a 14 x 21 five speed freewheel. I always thought this Peugeot was set up for the pavé of northern France with those gears and wire-wrapped and soldered 3x tubular wheels. Yet according to Peugeot’s advertising, this...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. @HamDer In the afternoon we caught some cake at Manefiskeren(I think, huge cake). Then in the evening it was just beers on the patio at Nemo. Everything was so packed. Super fun though, great attitudes, happy people. »

  2. @ErikdR Ha, Just came back from Copenhagen a few days ago. My grandparents immigrated from Denmark in the early 20th century and I still have family there(cousins a remove or two), but they had come years ago for visits in the States, and now take visi… »

  3. @Teocalli I managed that while moving…though I may have set a record for slowest forward movement on a bike that isn’t a track stand. =) »

  4. @ErikdR My nickname for my girlfriend, Lady van de Kempen, I am an American and have been living in Belgium for about three years now. She is from Belgium, from a region east of Antwerp known as de Kempen(loosely translated, “the country”). »

  5. This pic is a few weeks ago…the LvdK and I rented a house in the Ardenne for a week and invited her parents to come along for a few days. Her father, 65, who I have nicknamed the OFH(Original Flemish Hardman) rides an old Diamant alloy whose lowest gear… »

As surely as the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, if you ride a bicycle you can bet your ass against an apple that you are going to get a flat. Not if, but when. Death and taxes, and all that.This could be Pierre or Antonio or Jean-Michel, most likely a name that rolls off the tongue with the same ease he rolled his dead tubular from the...

@johnthughes's posts:

  1. @Rob @Rob If I read their website it looks like you are doing la roche en ardennes…..and the Col D’Haussire! For me, not someone who has been a climber(until recently). My first try up it, during the La Chouffe Classic, left me broken, bonked, shamed,… »

  2. Maybe this will work better than the link View Antwerp2Malmedy in a larger map »

  3. @Rob @Rob good to hear another kindred spirit. If you get a free day or two let me recommend catching a train to Mastricht and then riding over the mountain to Malmedy and staying at the youth hostel. First quarter is rolling foothills(passing through … »

  4. @Gianni The language is both easy(Lots of words that are the same or very similar) and hard(words and sounds that don’t exist in US english; ‘d’s that sound like ‘t’s, ‘b’s that sound like ‘p’s, ‘t’s that sound like ‘c’s except for “sometimes”)…and i… »

  5. @PT Given you don’t care(find them not applicable) for the stated reasons, let me give you the most important one. The chance that your ride falls over and damages the drive train. This cannot happen when it is laying on it’s left side. »

  6. After moving to Belgium, I was informed that a mini-pump is considered superior to CO2 on the basis that if one is serious about one’s ride, then one needs a way to maintain a high heart rate while changing a flat. Of course that was translated roughly fr… »

  7. @TBONE @VeloVita Blow out/Gash liners come wrapped around every delicious Meli Waffle. Why would you buy any other kind? »