Saturday, February 28, 2015


For over two years, I've planned to ride my bicycle to visit my aunt & uncle in Simi Valley. This February I finally put plans into action. I figured that riding the 200+ miles to Simi would act as a gateway drug for me to even longer rides across multiple state lines. Longer rides like those of my heroes - 
Matt & Siobahn and Justin & Meg and Deanna.

the rig as I set out on it Tues 7:15am

1st stop my weekly game of disc golf with John in Balboa Park

2nd stop - the secret Neil Blender skatepark in Mission Bay
so much fun - even if you have to wear a helmet - only accessible by bike or RV

the Rose Canyon bike trail leads to the UCSD campus

A - pit stop at the Che Cafe
B - quick visit with Jamie & Otis at Zero hq
C - mandatory salad stop at Peace Pies
D - surprise visit with Shanais of Nii Bar on their one year anniversary

made it the 43 miles to Dave's by 4pm & had a mellow skate
Dave whipped up a divine dinner from items on hand at the house.

state park between Pendleton & San Onofre

A - took a breather above the beach at San Clemente
B - butterfly garden at Doheny State Beach
C - took a wrong turn and went up a crazy steep hill, but it afforded this wild viewpoint of Dana Point harbor

day #3 begins down the PCH north of Laguna - found a famous ditch
fanagled my way into this amazing RIOTGRRL art exhibit at the Orange County Art Museum
hot tip courtesy of the the Tempster

took a skate history class from Jim Gray & he helped me make my #SkateLabOrBust sign
jokers is a sick shop, one of my favorite clients from the Overboard days
 A -when I left Jim he was going to skate with Jinx, so I tripped out to see a customer setting up a JINX
B - loads of old VHS
C - OHIO SKATEOUT was playing when I walked in - Hosoi with a wallie
D - the JOKERs jeff grosso tee
E - Lucero dropped off his magazine collection - these early Thrashers were some of the gems
F - Michael the buyer and hella cool cat - stoked I caught him at the shop

Mother's Market in HB for a salad and a shake

dudes filming at a beachside bench
caught TACO THURSDAY at the Secret Spot - saw Edgar made the Burnout!

took shelter in Long Beach with Viola's mom, Judy!
day #4 begins randomly meeting Amy Caron on the early morning streets of Long Beach

Ferris Bueller's house is not in Chicago... it's in Long Beach

after a 2 skateparks in LBC I spent the rest of the day with Gabe

Smithers on the Matix ramp

quick visit to the museum at South Bay Skates on the ride from Matix to Gabe's pad
lots of rad records emerged from Gabe's vault - tons of Simi Valley stories
day #5 begins with an unplanned visit to Vern's place in Marina Del Rey

he showed off some of his skate art and made a fine tofu scramble

kicked it with my homegirl, POPPY, in MarVista
I borrowed Ben's truck Y& drove to downtown LA for Fauxgazi & it was unparalleled fun!
Vern even got to play bass on one song! I was reunited with my pal Keith who is the frontman of the band!

wanted to go see their 2nd show of the night, but elected to try The Grain Cafe & turn in early.
day #6 send off party of Poppy & Ben - leaving MarVista

tunnel on Sepulveda humping over the hill paralleling the 405
fuel stop at Follow Your Heart in Canoga Park  - aka the Valley

approaching my last hill climb exiting Chatsworth
the last 10 miles into Simi were the most grueling and the last 2 miles the rain came down
 BUT I MADE IT - 220 miles in a leisurely 6 days.

spent the next couple days split between working on the magazine collection at SkateLab

the other half of the time I was chilling with my uncle Elias & aunt Jeanne!
Over the next few days, I will do more extensive posts on some of the places I visited!

Monday, February 16, 2015

test ride

For over two years now, I've wanted to ride my bicycle to Simi Valley. Yes, I want to ride it to more scenic places as well, but since I have family in Simi, I thought that would make a reasonable, in state destination for a ride. Earlier this week I did a test ride with the bike loaded down. Clocked about 65miles and rode to Leucadia and back in one day. Tomorrow begins the week plus journey to Simi Valley.

should of zigged when I zagged at Rose Canyon - had to backtrack - but now I know
brief snack break at the Che Cafe to sit with Rich's murals
looking forward to Salad Days screening at the Che in March
passed the La Paloma in Encinitas - world famous for skate video premieres

 A - rode as far North at the Leucadia skatepark, took a few turns, then rode to Peace Pies
B - parked out front of Peace Pies
C - a marvelous kale salad
D - then my day was made when Barry walked in
Annette & Barry were promoting their upcoming raw potluck

Barry is very engaging

this little buddy was patiently waiting

palm trees, American flags, and insane drop ins - Hairball, Bam, Omar!

stopped by the Zero reading room, but Jamie & Ed were in LA for the day
skated the new clover for a bit
Mike was on the phone for a long while - note his original Blaze Blouin collection

so I had some time to photograph some of the cool stuff in his office
 A - my guess is Meza made this for Mike's 30th birthday
B - Drive like Jehu poster & Lance Mountain painting of Steve Caballero
C - Neil Blender handmade fingerboard
D - Mark Lake handmade fingerboard
E - Andy Harris grinding

surf headed south near Del Mar

snack break with the gulls
then after the longest hill climb of my short life, I got hit by a 90year old man in his Lexus.
He made a right turn into my rear tire, but luckily didn't knock me down. He stopped in time and somehow maintained balance. I sure did see how easily I could die. Exchanged info and I was able to hobble home by 6:19pm. Having left the house at 7:33am, it was too long a day on the bike. I jumped in the shower and prepared for my dinner guests.
Kristina & Steve Bailey scooted over for some talk & tacos.
I'll do better to take more breaks and read my book on the ride to Simi.

I'll use the hashtag #kevridestoSIMI