The roommate and I started watching The Tour de France back in the days of the (now discredited and disgraced) US Postal team dominance of the tour with Lance Armstrong (circa 1999). Despite all the doping controversy in the sport of bicycling, the Tour has remained our July tradition. Normally we watch the replays, but today we have an extra day of vacation for the July 4 holiday, I’ve had the joy of a leisurely breakfast and watching the Tour live for a change.
In 1999, I couldn’t have predicted that I would have been able to talk even semi-intelligently about any sport, let alone the Tour, which has basically four different sub-races going at the same time. There’s the overall race (the yellow jersey), the sprinters’ competition (the green jersey), the king of the mountains (the polka dot jersey), and the overall team standings. There’s also a white jersey competition for best young rider, which is where you can see the new talent that will be dominating the general category in future years.
Today, Peter Sagan took the stage win today despite his cleat slipping out of the right pedal during the final sprint. He just clipped back in and kicked in a secondary sprint with a level of composure that made it look easy. The two-time world champion has become something of a favorite in the house because he’s generally charming in interviews and fun to watch race.
Nathan Brown took the polka dot “King of the Mountains” jersey from his teammate Taylor Phinney, which really won’t get going until the mountain stages of the race. They’re both Americans. Rooting for people from your own country, no matter where they are in the standings is very traditional for the Tour. There are only three riders from the USA on the tour this year, all on Team Cannondale-Drapac. (The third is Andrew Talansky.) This, of course, means that we’re rooting for Team Cannondale-Drapac this year (despite being a Specialized bicycle house.)
It wasn’t a sprinter day, so there were no real changes to the green jersey, which Marcel Kittel took yesterday.
Geraint Thomas took the Yellow Jersey yesterday and maintained it today for Team Sky, but that will likely not stay. Team Sky’s General Category contender is actually Chris Froome, so it’s not unexpected for Sky to ‘let’ Geraint Thomas ‘lose’ the jersey (so to speak.)
With a little luck, I’ll be able to get my own cycle out this afternoon and do a little riding of my own. As much fun as watching the Tour is, ultimately it’s my own time on the bicycle that’s the best of all.
Whenever my roommate leaves the house, Sophie-dog, Labradoodle-in-residence, flops over as shown in the photo above and acts as if all will to live has left her body. The roommate is Sophie-dog’s favorite human in the house. Without the roommate, there’s just no reason to exist, apparently.
Oh, eventually Sophie-dog will become desperate enough to seek out my company for cuddles, pets, and scratches. Not for a long time, though. First, there are several hours of “I’m wasting away. I’m dying by inches without my human. There’s no point to any of this anymore. This breathing I’m doing? It’s just for show. There’s no purpose to any signs of life in this fuzzy body.”
Finally, after she’s bored both herself and me to tears, Sophie-dog will haul herself to her feet with great effort and trudge over to my chair (or the couch, depending on where I’m sitting.) She’ll push her muzzle under my hand and then drop her chin into my lap.
“Pet me now. It’s been days since I had any sign of affection. Days.”
“I recall petting you just this morning, Sophie-dog. During breakfast. You remember breakfast, right?” I tell her, scratching behind her floppy ears. Sophie-dogs like being scratched behind their ears.
“Days. There’s no love for Labradoodles in this house. None, I tell you.”
“None,” I confirm, petting the top of her head. She could really use a trim. I can barely see her eyes under her shaggy eyebrows.
At this point, Sophie-dog flops down at my feet. “I’ll just keep your feet warm until the entropy of the universe takes its inevitable course. It shouldn’t be long now.”
“You’re probably right, Sophie-dog.”
The roommate has started taking some masters level engineering classes. Sully has claimed one of the books as ‘comfortable for lounging’ because that’s what cats do.
I have been out-of-town, ill, and trying to get a start on my Nanowrimo project. All of these things have contributed to my neglecting this blog. Hopefully, I will get a little time today at lunch to write about my trip to Vogue Knitting Minneapolis.
I really should use the time to knit or actually write on my Nanowrimo project.
Because I have been busy, here is a picture of one of my cats.