Lucky Number 13

 Here's my race number from Hood. Ahhh lucky number 13. Everyone's favorite. I told myself that I'm not superstitious and that it therefore won't have a negative effect on me. It seemed to work because I had a successful time in Oregon. Then right before the crit, one of the officials said to me, "Don't you know that you're supposed to wear 13 upsidedown?" Of course I know that! But I was in the midst of bunking this trend. Moreover, I was thinking, "Don't you know that you're supposed to fine me if I wear my number incorrectly?" No harm, no foul, no fine, and a good result. BAM!We celebrated an excellent week in Hood River with a delicious BBQ, highlighted with tasty smores over an open fire... well, a screened in open fire, so the fire still leapt out. I frequently opt for the PUT-IT-IN-THE-FIRE-TIL-IT-CATCHES-ON-FIRE method with my marshmellows, and did the same on this occasion. Sadly for the first time ever, the smokey/charred flavor overpowered the delicious caramelized sugar so I left with a bitter taste in my mouth... literally. I guess that's bound to happen when I've downed a dozen marshmellows. Lesson learned.Otherwise, things were awesome in Hood! We had very good results (3rd and 4th on GC, 1st Team GC, Best Young Rider, yellow jersey for a day, and a 1st and 2nd on two stages), incredibly generous hosts who conveniently all lived within a stone's throw of each other, a smorgasbord of food including something in the area of 36 chicken breasts, and remarkable weather that averaged in the mid 90s. A wicked scoa'cha!  Thankfully Graham-O and I shared a bedroom in the basement where the temperature hovered in the 50s. I think he put on his jacket when his teeth started chattering. I, on the other hand, basked in the cold since just standing upstairs put me into a sweat.Among other highlights at our hosts' house were the scooter and the almost-tandem bicycle. The scooter was a handsome steed that apparently hadn't worked in many weeks. However with the mechanical prowess possessed by Graham (spinning the oil tank cap for no apparent reason) and Becca (pushing wires around randomly, also for no apparent reason), the scooter fired up with fury! It was very pleasant to go fetch lunch in the suffocating heat on the scooter.Then there's the almost-tandem bicycle. "Almost" because the person on the back doesn't have handlebars nor pedals and doesn't really offer anything to the person on front besides encouraging words of support and excessive weight. But she's a beaut all the same, so Graham and I took her for a spin once or twice. Bu'bye now.