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 Post subject: Dun Run 2006
PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 3:38 pm 
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Another year, another Dun Run over. It was a good year, a good ride, good fun all round.

I arrived Thursday to be met by Madame Vice Chairman, who escorted me across 20km of London (it's a VERY big place) to her rather spiffing flat in Ealing. Here I met Emily, who is a charming young lady, and MVC proved to be a dab hand in the kitchen (with a concoction of pasta and pine nuts I committed to memory and will be trying out on Frood this evening). The boy Zipperhead showed up for dinner, bringing with him gifts of expensive chocolate and some powerful haematite magnets that were a hair's breadth away from infringing the Oidz copyright — he had an appointment with Madame Archivist's sexy clone, Dr Samantha. I am reliably informed that the session was most therapeutic.

After dinner there was fun in the garden, where we indulged in experiments with fridge-cold magnets and grapefruit juice (the magnets were more effective) and the use of an old bicycle pump as a flame thrower. MVC and paramour were also quite surprised when I identified the presence of shagging hedgehogs in the back passage by the noise alone. MVC had to fight the temptation to indulge in spoffling said beasts, as they were already quite put out by the attention of some excitable voyeurs.

Friday was spent on my first ever experience of girly shopping for girly things. I bought a dress. Admittedly it came from the rather splendid Cyberdog, which I can thoroughly recommend if you like all things that flash or glow under blacklight. It was from this emporium that MVC and I purchased the spiffing 7 of 9 head torches that fellow Dun Runners may have seen us sporting, and my fetching silver hair gel (which was splendid, even if Chuffy said it looked like I'd had snails crawling on my head). Condor was also great.

The London Eye, which was the major tourist attraction we went to, was rather impressive, although I did cause MVC some slight concern when I suggested that it might prove interesting should the capsule start filling with water; or if one of the passengers went berserk and slaughtered everyone, so that the capsule returned to the bottom made opaque by blood covering the inside. The security checks were risible so the latter was perfectly possible.

Later MVC tried to broaden my education by taking me to a fetish club, but for various reasons we did not gain entry. I shall retain that story for the Dungeon, I think. Instead we toured London by motorbike, thrumming over bridges and past Admiral Nelson. I was dressed in a strappy, kinky, minimalist number with high leather boots and MVC was wearing a corset and motorbike leathers. One has to confess that speeding around London in fetish gear with something hot and throbbing between one's legs is simply super fun.

On the day of the Dun Run there was a major panic as we discovered that the coach had left for Suffolk that morning and was sitting at the beach wondering why there were no cyclists clamouring to get on board. MVC handled the crisis with remarkable panache, finding another coach to bring everyone back to London and giving the original company an earful. This did leave needing to sell the remainder of the tickets somewhat urgently as the first coach company refused to accept responsibility for the massive cock-up. MVC did consider telling them that they really did not want to fuck with the League as we have some of the most useful people, ranging from lawyers to practitioners of the Dark Arts. It may yet come to that, although I suspect the small claims court will be the first stop.

The Pikes had also suffered a disaster. Speedy-- the Windcheetah -- was, to put it succinctly, somewhat fucked. It was rather too late to get it repaired. They arrived late afternoon, rather discombobulated, to pick up MVC's Street Machine. Mr Pike required a recumbent owing to a severe shortage of skin on his derriere after some 1st degree chafing he had suffered on a ride the previous week left him unable to sit on an upright.

Finally we were off, and for the first time since League records began there was a Sorority majority in the peloton making its way to Hackney. This was history in the making.

The ride to the pub was largely uneventful, although there was a red light moment, entirely Mr Pike's fault, for which he still is owed a damn good spanking.

At the pub in Hackney the usual suspects showed up in dribs and drabs. We made a League encampment under the usual tree, and so were easily found by Wing Commander Spesh, Zipperhead, Fuzzy, Evil Kiwi, AlexB, Paul, Munky etc.

Gradually, however, it became apparent that the residents of Asteroid M had been given leave to mix with outsiders, and I realised I knew hardly any of those gathering. The dictator himself showed up, although did not return the greeting I offered him. Our beloved Provost and Lady Provost were also present but remained elsewhere in the park, not wanting to run into the dictator lest things turn sordid.

It was, for me, a sad, bittersweet moment that would set the tone for the rest of the weekend.

The ride itself was good this year, even with the rain. My personal lighting theme was deep sea plankton, and I was most impressed by the Chairman's impression of a basking shark. It certainly gave me a jolly good incentive to keep up my pace.

With Tim on the recumbent the Pikes' pacing was slower than most of the League gang's. We parted at the tradition petrol station stop, as they left first on the basis that we would catch up.

Catch up we did. But not in a way we would ever have desired or hoped. The lovely and beautiful Mrs Pike stopped to give first aid to a young man who had been hit by a van driving on the wrong side of the road. When our group — comprising Evil Kiwi, Spesh, Zipperhead, MVC, Emily, the Chairman and myself — caught up the road was full of ambulances, police and cyclists. Mr Pike told us to keep on rolling and we did, as we were not needed and getting in the way of able assistance is only just worse than not stopping when help is required.

We did not find out what had happened until much later, but it was obvious something terrible had occurred and it was a rather pensive mood that settled over us for a time.

The rain started coming down just before the feed stop, despite my best efforts and those of the Chairman. I can only apologise. Thor was drunk. He was the sort of drunk that leads one to forget where one left one's face and nothing I said — no amount of cajoling, persuasion or threat — had any effect. He was far too busy insisting I snog him even though he was smelly and had a soggy beard.

In the end he said he would make sure we had a warm spell for going swimming, and told me I should be grateful for the rain as it would stop me getting hot. He proceeded to call me rude names, involving such terminology as 'frigid', 'wench' and 'impossible to please'. I really will have to do something about him later.

The feed stop was even more crowded than I had been expecting and I was glad of my decision to go self-sufficient this year. We stopped to rest our weary legs and bottoms, scoff some snacks and make use of the flask of coffee I had bought. Emily was already inside the village hall, having burned off the front unnoticed at some point, and MVC joined her. After a water refill and the obligatory rest stop, during which I was forced to battle to the death with some daddy-long-legs, we were off into the darkness once more.

I always enjoy the second half more than the first. I don't know why. I don't enjoy the first half at all. I think it is simply that my metabolism is in its low state for the time of night covering that first half. Perhaps this is also why I can't remember the route for the first half but I am not too bad on the second half.

This year the theme for the second half was dictated by a thunder god with a hangover and the unwelcome attention of an over-zealous p***ure fairy. We played leap frog with the Pikes, zooming past them only for them to pass us while one of our part changed a tube or vanished behind a hedge to relive pressure in a full bladder.

The last twenty miles were covered at a blistering pace, set initially by the Chairman on his 68" geared Mercian track bike, but turning into a breakaway by Emily and a young chap doing his first DR whom we had picked up before Framlingham. I gave chase, hotly pursued by MVC, but was dropped roughly a mile from the beach as the others made best use of their unfair advantage granted by the capacity to shift into something bigger than a 70" gear.

Thor kept his word and the sun was out by the time the worthy Mr Barnes showed up with the truck, our bags and thus the swim kit. Emily, MVC, the Chairman and myself braved the waves after the necessary work of packing the bikes was done. The sea was pleasantly cool, although the surf was fierce and I had a slight mishap when attempting to leave the sea involving being smacked over the head with a tonne of water. The Chairman informs me it was rather impressive.

That bittersweet feeling came back with it became clear that a group of people from Asteroid M had taken over the back seat of the coach — as League members know this is traditionally reserved for the Sorority and additional members of the Committee as may be necessary to facilitate the entertainment. Although MVC suggested we ask them to move, it was quite clear that it was an ACF coach, not a League coach, and so it would have been most improper to do so. I was very disappointed, as I had gone as far as bringing a special outfit for the trip back and the Belles' remarkable talents were hampered by having to sit elsewhere.

Nevertheless, talent will shine through and Emily proved most talented. A worthy addition to our ranks (should she ever get around to registering).

On to Paddington then, with the majority of the passengers missing out on the floorshow owing to having crashed out. Still, if they would rather sleep than observe lesbian bondage and girl-on-girl strawberry bootlace races then that's their loss.

This year will have been my last, I have decided. I have completed the Dun Run 5 times in a row now, this last year on fixed. The event is becoming a victim of its own success. It is too popular now and for me has lost some of its magic. The tragic death of one of the participants this year seems to hammer that point home. The camaraderie is no longer there amongst the riders as a collective whole: now there are subsections.

The subsection in which I found myself was not League one. It was an ACF one. It bothered me that Chuffy felt unwilling to join the gang of old friends because the dictator was around. It made me realise that I am still angry with Sam for being such a control-freak; for making me choose between my friends; for making me choose between my friends and my principles; for banning all mention of the League on his forum and then saying the ill-will was my fault.

Charlotte is a beautiful person whom I love dearly, and the Dun Run is an event at which I get to see some of my dearest and most valued friends, but I saw the web address for ACF on the coach ticket and that smarted. It hurt, still, because of what happened.

There is no point doing something that is not entirely enjoyable and for me the social aspect of the ride was always the most important. I tried to forget about the ACF fiasco this year but I couldn't because it was an ACF peloton and an ACF bus. That was enough of an edge to spoil it for me.

Forgive and forget? There are people over there calling Charlotte MVC who haven't even heard of the League or the Sorority. That smarts. My memory is too good to forget. I have few friends on this world: Sam managed to come between us with his obsessive need for control and that's not something I can easily forgive.

When any surplus funds get ploughed into another ride, I won't get to hear about it because ACF is an insular society where I am persona non grata. No. I can't forgive and forget. I want to be childish about this, dammit, so nyer.

Anyway. My thanks to Graham for Thursday's entertainment and Saturday night's company. You made the first half bearable. Thanks to Charlotte's dad and sister, for services above and beyond the call of duty. They both deserve medals. Thanks to Emily for many things, including dinner and the demonstration of things to do with jelly babies and cable ties.

But, above all, thanks to Charlotte for a simply wonderful weekend. She is a wonderful treasure who makes the world a better place by the very fact of her existence.

There will be other events and other rides. I hope to see some of you there.

Sam

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 5:28 pm 
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Sam,

Just remember


"Nil illegitimi carborundum"


Sorted :evil:


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 6:44 pm 
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Chuffy and I enjoyed the ride too, but it did indeed have a very different flavour from the last time we rode it. As observed, Chuffy was not possessed by the spirit of mingle, so we relaxed on the periphery. At least I got to say hello to everyone I wanted to (even though it would have been nice to say more than hello), and finally met Fatters :hug:

I can't believe the coach picked the wrong day...doh!

The most eventful part of the ride was Chuffy's amazing freak p*ncture, which initially resulted in steady deflation. Having realised that his spare tube had a schraeder valve, and our pump being presta he opted for the pump up and hope for the best stratgegy. Amazingly enough, re-flating every 9 miles or so seemed to work, and it held out for the last 32 miles....

Oh, and was grateful for the kindness of strangers - in particular the true gent at the food stop, who overheard me moaning about having to queue for water and promptly produced a huge bottle from his car boot to top up my bottle.

The racy boys who kept overtaking us and then having to wait at each junction because they had no idea where they were going were also quite amusing.

We arrived at the beach far earlier than anticipated, though this meant breakfast was only 10 people away. I then went down to the sea for a paddle. The sea was a bit frisky, and resulted in me having to wring my chamois out....although Chuffy pointed out that I didn't necessarily have to do this while I was still wearing my shorts and standing in front of several casual observers.

A couple of hours of tea-drinking, lurking, pun*ture repairing and chattering was followed by a toddle up to the ruins, though god knows what the ruins thought of us. Someone was enjoying a kip next to the fallen walls. After exhausting the local entertainment it was then time to get back on our bikes and poddle over to the B+B for a hot soak, a snooze and an epic feast with ale.

Think it will probably be our last, too. It felt like a long way to travel for a ride and things have changed since the last time. Such is life, I suppose.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 4:42 am 
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Shame the long standing regulars are starting to give it up, for various reasons, & a shame it's reached the point of self destruction through its own success. For me it's a year too soon, I'd intended making the attempt next year as part of the build up to LEJOG & was looking forward to meeting people.. Oh well there'll be other rides.
I'm sorry RB doesn't feel comfortable with ACF company, the posters don't have a problem, it's purely between SW & RB/Chuffy, I'll happily pass time with any of you & refuse point blank to dis another cyclist 'cos they're on the wrong forum. :braaak: :kissy:

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 9:51 am 
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It's not that. I'm sure the posters are just fine.

But I can't go over there, Heretic. Sam has a problem with me. And if the posters over there stay over there, then we don't have a relationship. The DunRun for me was about maintaining friendships. As it stands there are very, very few ACFers who venture outside the bubble these days, so I can't really maintain a good friendship with them if I can't go in.

That's my problem with ACF. It's not just that Sam is a control freak - it's that he's the sort of control freak that wants to corral everyone inside his living room and forbid them making reference to the outside world, even though this means that they can't talk about those of their friends he has banned.

It's an insular world. That bothers me. It also bothers me that Charlotte and I set the League up as an independent thing together with everyone else who still comes here, but we don't see her any more and it was an ACF bus, even though ACF is exclusive (no matter what Sam says).

That's up to Charlotte. This is my problem, not hers. After everything that's happened I'm not prepared to put myself through that niggling pissed-offness again.

At the end of the day it seems to me that a lot of the ACF people have forgotten where those friendships started, and Sam is certainly not willing to fess up to the fact that ACF would not be the success it is if there hadn't been the disaster over at C+. ACF isn't his first attempt at a forum after all, it's just the first one to get any members.

Sam

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 11:44 am 
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Right, that's it, I read your write up and in spite of being referred to nicely it upset me. It upset me because your upset shines through (and I'm not someone who "does" subtlety).

Now I'm upset because this planet holds very few entities that share my very warped sense of humour (I think a bag full of fake blood capsules in the London Eye would be a giggle)

So, next year you tell me where the ride is and I'll come up there, but please try and keep the nasty hill count down, I really don't like big fuck off hills.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 12:18 pm 
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It's not an either/or thing, Graham. You know you'll always be welcome at my hearth. Just let me find somewhere to live other than my Mum and Dad's house and you can come visit.

Frood's just as warped, by the way.

We'll just have to get some more League events up and running. Is Alchemy over yet?

And I want to meet Gunner. For real. In the flesh. And given that Gunner is deeply territorial and doesn't venture outside Yorkshire, I suppose the mountain will have to go to Mohammed. Or something.

Sam

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 1:19 pm 
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Shmaybe we could take a leaf out of Phil Malcolms book and have some sort of almost but not quite half way meet at a Yoof hostel or summink.
I know it's not half way but Dumfriesshire is nice...

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 1:30 pm 
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Oh dear.

A long way to go for a less-than-great time.

Makes me think that one of the things I like about cycling is the (temporary) sense of true independence I get when doing it - not having to worry about other people ...

If something gets inside that zennish bubble it's dead annoying - particularly if it's something that ought to have been possible to ignore and that turns out not to be the case (ACF/Sam stuff).

And it does sound as if the ride itself could have got too big to be enjoyable.

Maybe I'll still do it one day - the idea has a romantic neatness to it - but it's dropped a couple of notches down my "things to do one day" list.

Oh dear.

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Last edited by RJ on Thu Jul 13, 2006 8:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 1:49 pm 
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It is a long way to go for one ride. But I have my new Hilleberg Nallo GT 2 now :smug: and I've been thinking that maybe we should organise a long weekend - either Youth Hostelling, as per Mrs P's suggestion (Dumfries is quite nice, as long as we don't go anywhere near Stranraer) or camping. Start somewhere and take a couple of days to ride someplace else.

And there's the Scottish Dun Run, which I fully intend to organise for June-ish next year.

Sam

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"You might remember that 'annoyed' is my natural state!"
http://quantumcoyote.com
"Ya'd think we could just attracts ants, like normal people."


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 4:34 pm 
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When we went to Dumfries last year we stayed here. It were gradely, camping or bothies - the CTC arrived en masse just as we were leaving for the KM birthday thingy. Plus it had it's only little wood with loads of red shquirrels caping about like nutcases :D I like the long weekend idea, people can always turn up whenever suits them if they can't do the whole thing

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2006 5:09 pm 
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That looks really nice.

I shall post a thread in the Events office and we can think about a date.

Sam

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http://ravenfamily.org
"You might remember that 'annoyed' is my natural state!"
http://quantumcoyote.com
"Ya'd think we could just attracts ants, like normal people."


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 4:59 pm 
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Cobblers. I didn't say hello to Zipperhead :cry:


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 5:49 pm 
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I noticed. But I was too polite to mention it :roll:

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 10:22 am 
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'ello Ravenbait me darling. Long time since I logged in, not such a long time since I lurked. Work pressures prevent me forumming everywhere :(

I had to pop in though as I could hear your muttering through the open window. I agree with much of your comments re the atmosphere on this years run, and like you I also decided that it was probably my last.

The big thing though, is that the community as a whole is bigger than just the league. Yes I know that I've always been on the fringes of the club, preferring to sit quietly in me own little corner, but that doesn't mean I'm not friendly.

One thing I did enjoy was the meeting up of old friends at Hackney, a quick "hello" then wander off to see somebody else. Seeing other people unexpectedly was also a pleasure, and I amazed myself by identifying Chuffy and Baggy for the first time as I whizzed past them standing in a layby. I just had time to yell a quick hello over my shoulder, yet it was enough. (Proper pleasantries were exchanged at the next meeting in Dunwich).

Sorry that I didn't ride with the club this year, but my agenda for the ride was to see if I could ride home again and within Audax timescales. The club's pace was slightly wrong for this, so I stuck with Stefan (of the beard) as it was just the two of us heading for Southend and I had the map.

I know this (seemingly closed from the outside) group and ACF are seen as seperate entities; but I think the jumbly bus is amazing. I see Barry's coach service as a cattle train - just something to transport folk home; whereas Charlotte's coach I see more as a meeting of friendly cyclists from here, ACF and C+. The fact you feel person non grata on ACF shouldn't stir up this bitterness in you. We're all just lost and lonely cyclists looking for a place to chat.

Anyway, what the f$$$ am I waffling about and why didn't I sleep last night?



Dunno, but I shall be checking the Events office for a Dun Run equivalent which ticks all the boxes that the dynamo used to. A fun group ride of friends.


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