Notes from the road: The 2004 to-do list

With the race calendar about to kick off, it’s season preview time here at VeloNews. Over the next couple of issues, the print magazine will feature previews of the European road season, the European and U.S. mountain-bike seasons, and the domestic North American road season. We’ll have first looks at the new teams, all the key players and the races. Since that territory will be covered ad nauseam, I thought that this week I’d present a season preview from a little different perspective. So, without further explanation, here’s the Notes from the road “to do” list for the upcoming year: Get

By Bryan Jew, VeloNews managing editor

With the race calendar about to kick off, it’s season preview time here at VeloNews. Over the next couple of issues, the print magazine will feature previews of the European road season, the European and U.S. mountain-bike seasons, and the domestic North American road season. We’ll have first looks at the new teams, all the key players and the races. Since that territory will be covered ad nauseam, I thought that this week I’d present a season preview from a little different perspective. So, without further explanation, here’s the Notes from the road “to do” list for the upcoming year:

Get a slice of apple pie at the top of Oak Glen after the Oak Glen road race at Redlands.

Have beer(s) and brat(s) at Superweek in Milwaukee.

Buy a giant pretzel from a guy pushing them up the Manayunk Wall in a grocery cart at the USPRO Championship in Philadelphia. Get a Philly cheese steak. Eat some crab cakes.

Stop by the side of the road and pick up a bucket of fresh strawberries during a stage of the Tour de Georgia. Have breakfast at a Waffle House. Get a slice of pecan pie.

Go out for seafood in Monterey during Sea Otter.

Sleep in a Motel 6 and wake up for breakfast at Denny’s somewhere in America.

Go to the New York City Cycling Championship and get a hot dog from a street vendor. On second thought ….

Grab a beer and sit on lean up against the crowd barriers at Athens Twilight and feel the breeze of the peloton as it passes within inches of your face.

Cram into the back of a team car in a race caravan, and hope that they have an extra boxed lunch from Subway.

Grab an espresso at the start of the San Francisco Grand Prix, er, T-Mobile International presented by BMC Software.

Kill some time at the Wachovia race in Trenton by going down to the pizza parlor on the backside of the course and getting two big slices and a Coke.

Get an ice-cream cone at the USPRO Crit in Downers Grove, if the line isn’t too long.

Eat some donuts and hope that inspiration strikes for my next Friday column.

Luckily, no Atkins Diet for me. After a month (since New Year’s Day) of being inundated with news stories about the low-carb diet craze – in which they inevitably interview some rather, um, large people who have started “low-carb-related” businesses – I’ve finally reached my breaking point. So, after my high-carb breakfast (Waffles? Bagels? Donuts? That stuff’ll kill you), I’m going to start outlining my own diet plan, based on years spent covering the fittest people I know – pro cyclists. It’s called the “Get off your butt, exercise, and then eat whatever you damn well please” diet. Trust me, it’s gonna make millions. But until then, I’ll eke out my meager existence by, among other things, keeping up this weekly carb-fueled column.

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My last word on the donut/doughnut thing: It’s just a guess, but I’d say the people who are spending more than two minutes of their time debating the spelling aren’t the ones who really enjoy their donuts/doughnuts. So call ’em whatever you like, just don’t take the last one.

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You know it’s a Super Bowl lacking in star power when He Hate Me is the biggest attraction on media day. Maybe they should play this one under XFL rules. Where’s Vince McMahon when you really need him?

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I can guarantee you, some confused reader is going to e-mail: “Don’t you mean Jim McMahon?”

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Of course, the real biggie on Sunday is going to be ’cross world’s in Pont-Château, France. Anybody want to lay some money that a Belgian wins the elite men’s race? Check out VN.com for the same-day coverage, and then enjoy the big game.

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Column topic that didn’t make this week’s column: Five riders who should have breakfast-cereal nicknames.

Column topic that won’t make next week’s column: Cleveland Indians pitching prospect regrets starring in Japanese gay-porn movie while in college.

Ideas? Comments? Send ’em to webletters@7dogs.com.