Well, the wind was bad and gusty but it didn't knock me around as much as I'd feared it would, so I rode on. I was perhaps ten miles from home when I pulled in the clutch to come to a stop and the bike made this awful ZHIZZ-ZHIZZ-ZHIZZ noise; it wasn't brakes and it wasn't tires and I didn't know what the fuck it was, but it only made it when I was going faster than 35 MPH.
Rode on for another mile or so, then pulled off the road to check it out. Turns out the damn chain was too tight.
Now, I know when I put it all back together on Saturday evening that I set the tension correctly. The correct chain tension leaves perhaps half a centimeter between the chain and the swingarm, and I was positive that I'd set it up that way. But there, by the side of the road, with the bike on its centerstand, I shut it off, put it in first gear, rolled the back tire forward, and the damn chain didn't get closer than an inch to the swingarm--which is way too damned tight.
So I went to Pep Boys and spent $23 on a set of combination wrenches and a stubby adjustable, and then reset the chain tension right there in their parking lot. (Said tools, or a similar set, will remain with the bike from now on.)
I rode on, and the bike was splendid for the rest of my excursion. The ride and maneuverability are wonderful with the new tires. The performance was where I expected it to be, except that going into the wind required about 30% more throttle than usual.
So I got to CompUSA and looked over what they had for fans. I could have spent $20 to buy two 2" fans, but I wasn't sure they were the right size--and it was too much damned money, anyway. So instead I bought a slot fan (one that goes in an expansion slot and is powered from a drive power plug) for $7.
I looked at keyboards; they have a really nice gaming keyboard there that "only" costs $100, but it's made of aluminum and lights up and has a really, really good typing feel to it.
I looked at motherboards and video cards. Part of me is tempted (when I finally get a new machine) to save my pennies for a really, really high-zoot video card--spend maybe $400 on it, and be able to put all the detail sliders in WoW to their maximum positions. That would be neat.
Hard drives--none of the damned hard drives have prices on them any more. WTF.
So I gave up looking at stuff I don't really need right now, paid for my slot fan, and left. I was hungry, so I stopped at Chick-fil-A for a chicken sandwich and was underwhelmed by it.
Look: the basic #1 combo--a chicken sandwich, fries, and a medium Coke--is $6. For $6 I expect better than a bun, a piece of chicken, and pickles, you know? As chicken sandwiches go it was competently constructed, having good texture and the expected level of flavor. It did not seem exceptional to me in any way, though.
McDonald's sells their premium hamburger combo--the black angus burger--for $6.41 with tax. So I think Chick-fil-A could do better than this.
Oh well. It's not that it was bad or anything; it just wasn't anything special, is all.
Got back on the bike and rode home, and it was a pleasant ride all the way. Now I feel well-tenderized, but since I don't have to go anywhere else that's okay.
* * *
I got four links to AoSHQ here, because I saw them and wanted to comment.
#1: Obama thought he won the debate.
You're kidding me, right? He actually thought, "Hey, that went pretty well! I'm awesome--as always!" He actually thought that?
#2: Same story, different perspective. President Chipper McClueless apparently astounded his aides by his self-assurance:
BO: Hey, that went pretty well, didn't it?Why do I keep writing Saturday Night Live sketches for free?
Aide: (Laughs) Oh yes, Mr. President. Splendid.
BO: I know, right? It's like Romney was moving in slow motion or something. Damn, I knew that debate prep with Kerry was a waste of time. I'm better than everyone!
Aide: (Realization slowly dawning on him as Obama speaks) Uh...Mr. President...you...lost. You lost the debate.
BO: (Laughing) Oh, come on now! I know better than that.
Aide: No, really, sir...really. Honestly. You lost. Romney mopped the floor with you.
BO: You are so fired.
Yeah, check out this info:
In an extraordinary insight into the events leading up to the 90 minute showdown which changed the face of the election, a Democrat close to the Obama campaign today reveals that the President also did not take his debate preparation seriously, ignored the advice of senior aides and ignored one-liners that had been prepared to wound Romney.In other words, Ol' Slammin' Barry-O is the bestest with the mostest! He's better at everything than anyone else is!
What was it I said back here? Oh yes:The Democrat said that Obama's inner circle was dismayed at the 'disaster' and that he believed the central problem was that the President was so disdainful of Romney that he didn't believe he needed to engage with him.Extraordinary. As Monty Python said of one of the Twits of the Year, "He has no idea when he's losing. He also has no idea when he's winning. He has no type of sensory awareness whatsoever." Or words to that effect.
'President Obama made it clear he wanted to be doing anything else - anything - but debate prep,' the Democrat said. 'He kept breaking off whenever he got the opportunity and never really focused on the event.
The Democrat, who is aligned with the Obama campaign and has been an unofficial adviser on occasions, said that David Axelrod, Obama's chief strategist, was stunned that the President left the stage feeling that he had won the debate.
Look, let's be honest: Obama was not ready for the debate. Okay? He didn't bother to prepare for the debate because it's not fun and he already knows he's the smartest guy in the room no matter where he goes, so why should he have to do any prep for a debate with a Republican? Everyone knows those guys are all crazy neanderthal retards, and the smartest man inAnd:
the worldHISTORY certainly doesn't need to prepare for a debate with a mentally defective cave man!
Problem: whatever his political deficits may be, Mitt Romney is not a mentally defective cave man. Also, Barack Hussein Obama most assuredly ain't a genius. He may or may not be intelligent, but a genius he is not; and even if he is, a person of average intelligence who is prepared for debate can mop the floor with a genius who is not.
I'm not saying that Obama's lack of preparation excuses his performance; far from it. I'm saying the opposite: there was absolutely no excuse for Obama to have performed that poorly. He screwed the pooch because his own hubris led him to think he could win the debate just by showing up, because he's such a genius that he could crush Mitt Romney without breaking a sweat. He was wrong, and it was because he's not as smart as he thinks he is.Here's the problem: Obama was so convinced that Romney was a stupid bumbler, he didn't bother to prepare for the debate, got his clock cleaned, and thought he won.
No one is.
#3: Hilarious RNC graphic detailing how many times Obama has mentioned Big Bird versus how many times he's mentioned Libya or his plans to fix the economy. It's pretty damned funny...and makes a telling point.
#4: Andrew Sullivan is apparently losing his shit but the real meat of this post is about Obama himself:
Let me suggest something that many conservatives realized after the debate: Obama did not do that badly. For Obama. He was the same listless, droning, exhausted-of-ideas scold we have seen for at least two years now (and maybe three).Emphasis removed, but it's not really necessary.
He was Obama. This is what he is. He is not quick-witted. He is not, as I think I saw Mickey Kaus note, a wonk. He has never been a wonk, a detailed-policy guy.
He is a guy who speaks vacuously of hopes and dreams and change and fairness.
He always has been.
The problem, for the liberals, is not Obama. This is what you bought. This is your guy. It wasn't his A game, but it was something close to his B+ game.
The problem was Romney, who was commanding, fluent, reasonable, articulate, sharp-witted, warm, occasionally funny, full of ideas, full of facts, full of thoughtful, detailed criticisms of Obama policy (who the hell expected him to bring up, as an afterthought, Dodd-Frank's failure to specify what a "reasonably qualified" mortgage applicant was, and how that chilled lending? Obama sure didn't!), and, therefore, ultimately, full of qualification for the job and yes, full of gravitas.
That's the problem.
Not Obama. I repeat: This is who Obama is. He has never been this brilliant intellect and keen policy analysts liberals have, in their BubbleWorld, dreamed him as.
The problem is not that Obama is or was awful. The problem is that he is what he always is -- adequate and hardly ever more -- and Romney is actually on top of things, an accomplished executive with a winner's thirst for victory and an A-student's understanding of what victory requires.
What achievement did Obama have that qualified him for the Presidency? He hadn't even completed his first term as a US Senator before he ran for President; he didn't sponsor much (if any) legislation during his terms in either the Senate or the Illinois legislature, and was known for voting "present" on controversial issues.
During the 2008 race, Sarah Palin had the most executive experience of any of the front-running candidates (Obama/Biden, McCain/Palin).
Obama had none whatsoever.
Obama's supposed high intelligence was smoke and mirrors, generated by a friendly press who wanted him to win the election, who abandoned all pretense at unbiased reportage in order to accomplish it. His college transcripts are still shrouded in mystery because the press is very carefully not curious at all about them.
His erudition turns out to be entirely dependent on who's feeding lines to the teleprompter; without that crutch this "greatest orator" turns into a stammering hack.
And he can't even tell when he's lost a debate. Shit.