Thursday, January 31, 2013

Tuesday, January 29, 2013


Here's a video I shot a couple weeks ago of Joe Brown and I snow biking in Winthrop. (He owns Methow Cycle & Sport there.) The video is for an upcoming Seattle Times story and they wanted me to do an accompanying voice-over. Thus, the abundance of "Um's" and "Uh's". (Please excuse.)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


For a little collarbone-related peace of mind before I leave for Luxembourg, I saw Dr. Bergman yesterday. He's the surgeon who plated my collarbone in May 2010 when I Supermanned over my bike handlebars on the Boulevard Trail in Bellingham.

I'd been wondering if I should have the titanium centipede removed (see above X-ray shot yesterday) because a screw, or something, visibly protrudes. (See here and other posts throughout this blog.) And while it doesn't hamper or limit my mobility in any way, sometimes my collarbone aches and with such a protuberance (that's an upsetting word), I wondered if it was time to have it taken out.

But Dr. Bergman says no. The X-ray shows that the clavicle has healed well and there's no sign of a screw working its way out, which had been my concern. He prodded around a bit, said everything felt good and that the protuberance (there's that word) might just be bone growth atop one of the nine screw heads. "Whew!," say I. I was loathe to have more surgery.

In the above photo, please also take a moment to admire my first-ever Fu Manchu mustache. Or maybe it's a biker mustache. (What's the difference?)        

Saturday, January 19, 2013


Sorry I've not been writing much in the way of words lately, but I am frantically packing up the house in anticipation of our family's grand relocation to Luxembourg. We leave Valentine's Day, a little less than a month! Pretty darn excited though I will certainly miss Bellingham, the Northwest and the terrific friends I've made here. And of course, we'll be back at some point in the future so there's no point in me getting all weepy-sad.

See the bottom of this post for details about next Sunday's open-house kinda sorta good-bye thang that my good friends John and Nancy Clark are hosting. All are welcome! 
Glenn and John (who's laughing, not having some sort of fit) on Saturday, above the clouds on Burnout Road at the southern flank of Chuckanut Mountain. That's Lummi Island in the foreground with Orcas behind it.
Last Wednesday, I rode the snow bikes with Joe Brown of Methow Cycle and Sport. Lots of fun! I'll be writing a story about it for The Seattle Times. 
Today, John and Scott try to figure out what the heck this solar-powered, beeping, toilet-looking thing is.  It's up at Galby just east, and a little below Whoopsie Woodle. 
Glenn and John yesterday climbing Fragrance Lake Road. 
Partially frozen Lake Padden, today.

Hey y'all, I am deeply humbled by my good friends John and Nancy Clark who are hosting a "So Long for Now" Open House for Mike McQuaide (that's me) on Sunday, January 27 from 2 - 5ish (or whenever). Everyone is welcome and should feel free to pass the word on to whomever the heck you want to. (I mean, John Clark'll be there so you know it's pretty much open to anyone.) 

Here are deets from the Clarks themselves: 

"We are hosting an Open House to wish Mike (and Jen) McQuaide a wonderful new adventure in Luxenbourg. They came to Whatcom County and jumped right into the community many years ago, making us laugh along the way and showing us things us "Nativies" had ever seen or experienced! Hope you will join us! Jen has already started her new chapter in Luxenbourg with Mike and Baker joining her in the next few weeks.

Feel free to BYOB and bring an appetizer if you choose!

At John & Nancy Clark's, 2133 Walnut Street, Bellingham (671-5953)

Please pass the word on to anyone you know that might like to attend!"

Sunday, January 13, 2013


Words to follow.  Thanks to John Clark for the running pics and the pre-race shot of Glenn and I. ... 

Here's the video I put together. (Sorry it's shaky.) 

Thursday, January 10, 2013


Had another great meeting last week with Village Books’ Chuck Robinson. Looks like we’re going to move forward on my next book, tentatively titled “Biking Whatcom County.” Plans are for Chuck to publish is as part of their Chuckanut Editions publishing arm. 

Super-duper psyched, am I! It’ll be for ALL riders, from ultra-casual to ultra-Ecker, that is, ultra-hardcore. For roadies AND mountainees. Look for it (hopefully) by Ski to Sea at the end of May!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013


Full dislosure: McQ gots hiself a man crush on Tommeke.  

Saturday, January 05, 2013


But oh, it was most excellent to be riding Chuckanut Mountain today with Titanium Cowboys Johnny Boy Clark and Grandmaster Glenn Gervais!

Tuesday, January 01, 2013


I had grand plans of getting 2013 off with a bang by completing a significant-ish ride with some of Bellingham's cycling finest. 

So I jumped into the Holiday Hangover Hundo, organized by Scott Alexander, and quickly realized that I had absolutely no power in the legs. Nada. Zilch. Nothing. 
I knew I wasn't up for 100, but I thought maybe I'd ride down to Samish Island and back, about 50 miles or so. It was not to be.  

I got halfway down Chuckanut, saw the sign for Cleator Road and that was it--I took a left, climbed up to the Interurban Trail and headed back into town. 
Stopped at Tony's in Fairhaven where I grabbed a quad-tall no-room Americano, a window seat and watched a mellow New Year's Day morning unfold. 
Not sure why I felt so blah. Wonder if I've been pushing it too hard lately with all the cyclocross and run training I've been doing. Kinda felt similarly blah two days ago on our 9-mile run in the Chuckanuts. Like I just couldn't get going. Perhaps I've got our upcoming Luxembourg move on the brain. Speaking of which, here's the quick 'n' dirty.

My wife, Jen, just landed a job with a health care company in Luxembourg City; ever since our trip to Paris a few years ago, we've been eager to get back and so when this opportunity came up, we jumped on it. Neither one of us has been there but here are some things we know about the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. 
  1. It's the tiny European country that starts with "L" and isn't Liechtenstein.
  2. How tiny? Thirty by 50 miles; less than half the size of Whatcom County. Population-wise, Luxembourg City is about the same size as Bellingham.
  3. If you're ever singing the Guns 'n' Roses song "Paradise City" to yourself, you can sub in "Luxembourg City" quite easily; it fits perfectly. Go ahead, try it. 
  4. Luxembourg is one of the richest countries in the world which I guess means it's probably one of the most expensive. (I guess we'll find out.)
  5. Frank and Andy Schleck are from Luxembourg.
  6. It's about perfectly located in the heart of Europe, wedged between France (Tour de France, Paris-Roubaix), Belgium (Tour of Flanders, Liege-Bastogne-Liege) and Germany (Jan Ullrich). Paris is two hours by train, Brussels, Belgium and Frankfort, Germany appear to be about the same. 
  7. They speak French, Germany and Luxembourgish in Luxembourg. I speak English but almost 40 years ago I spoke German well enough to earn a C+ at Timberlane Junior High School. So, ... there's that.
Things are moving pretty quickly for us: Jen leaves for Luxembourg on Monday (Monday!) with Bake and I to follow in early March (early March!), as soon as we can get our house rented and take care of the myriad details that need taking care of. Plans are for Bake to go to an international school there. 

We're pretty exited. It's a daunting adventure and I'll miss the Northwest like crazy, but I presume we'll be back at some point. And hey, if you're ever in Europe and want to hook up for a ride, be sure to contact me. I'll no doubt be opening the European Headquarters of Titanium Cowboys International.