Thursday, October 30, 2008

Today's post brought to you by the letter tree

OK, so tree isn't exactly a letter, but today's post is still sponsored by trees. I don't think trees get enough due, they provide shade, leaves to play in during the fall, lifesaving oxygen, and obstacles. Yes, obstacles. Of course the first rule of an obstacle is that you're supposed to avoid it. Hence, the name- Obstacle. Say it with me now...

Last night was another rendition of the taco ride. Yet, it wasn't exactly the taco ride as a group of us met and headed out early to make sure we had enough time to fully enjoy the awesome weather and our great trail system. Lou, Andy, Matt, and I headed out from the shop at 5. I was rolling on a new bike to test ride. Timing couldn't have been better as it gave me a chance to drop my battered front wheel off to have a new spoke put in, trued, and have the bearings cleaned and packed. The bearings were feeling a bit "crunchy" last time I checked.

As soon as we hit the trail, the race was on. Andy and Lou were attempting to drive each other into the dirt as Matt and I headed up the rear. We cruised at a pretty good clip through the woods and made it through unscathed. We stopped for a quick beer break provided by Matt in the form of MGD cans he was hauling on the pave trail above the exit to Denman's. The opening of the beer can must have been some type of signal as we were soon surrounded by a large group of additional riders. A few more minutes of shooting the breeze and it was time for a loop of Hillside and Rollercoaster. My climbing legs weren't quite with me, but I still made the best of it and enjoyed the workout.

Dusk was starting to settle in as we headed back for a reverse loop in Denman's. Lou, Matt, and Tom were in the lead as I worked on hanging on with them. We met a few more taco riders coming through Denmans forward so they turned back to follow us as well. Tom was gassed at this point so he let me by in attempt to close the gap that the other two opened up. I was railing the turns and hauling down the trail pretty good on the test steed. Definitely impressed thus far. Then came the moment.

Damn, now I was two for two. It wasn't a narrow gap or even a tricky part of the trail. I just hung my shoulder out too far and the tree leaned in just a bit. Trees don't move. They move you. I nailed my left shoulder on a small tree and blew off the bike to the right jamming my other arm and shoulder into the ground. I rolled around to assess my damages. Luckily no damage to the bike (whew) though the sudden stop did kill my little commuter headlight, my left shoulder definitely felt the impact along with the left hand, and the right shoulder was pretty jammed up feeling. Nothing to keep me from jumping back on so I waited for Tom (and his lights) to show back up and tooled the rest of the way back following him (and his light).

Back to the shop I rode before heading to Giff's to drown my pain with beer and tacos. I enjoyed some beers with the guys before heading off to Squirrel's to grab some parts for my costume. I hope to see the rest of you sometime this weekend either at Spooky Woods or the Dirty Du.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Bouncing baby boy

Well, at least it isn't the expensive kind (yet). Apparently I bounce well. Actually, let me rephrase that, I bounce better than Squirrel. I tried my damnedest to get out of work early enough to get at least an hour on the trails last night. Alas, the demons of work wouldn't let me get out of there until it was 5:45 by the time I hit the trail. Smart money was on hitting Denman's forward and backward and be done since I'm not running lights.

The trail really was in great shape. The leaf cover has somewhat filled and made the muddy spots less likely to coat you completely in goo. The rest of the trail was really leaf covered, but dry. In some spots there was literally a carpet of green leaves down that made for some awesome looking scenery. I was a bit too focused on putting down some good effort to stop and take pictures, but I definitely took a mental note of how cool it looked. However, along with the leaves, the wind from this weekend had put down a ton of sticks and in some places logs on the trail. Several people had moved some of the larger pieces and it appeared Squirrel might have all ready been down with the chainsaw to get most of the big pieces out of the way- Thanks Guys! The small sticks didn't really present any problem (or so I thought).

I made it through forward at a decent clip and just started the return when I ran into Brian's buddy, Corey. We stopped for a minute and exchanged a few words before heading on our respective directions. Just after the fire pit, I came to the log pile and hit it hard. Oops, a bit too hard. I've been trying to work out a plan to cross this obstacle as quickly as possible and also working on lifting my rear tire to keep it from popping up in the air so much. Well, I've done a couple wild nose wheelies all ready trying to get the timing right. Tonight was by far the closest I've come to totally eating it doing this. The rear end came up and I actually felt the shock fully compress before it rebounded just enough for me to get the back tire on the ground. That shook me up a bit for sure, but at least tragedy was avoided.

I hit the gas again and made a mental note that I was pretty lucky to get out of that without harm. Note- do not tempt fate or Bike Ninjas as they will come back to kick your ass. Just a few minutes later, I rounded a corner and bam, before I knew it I was over the bars and rolling on the ground. WTF?! Attack of the Bike Ninja! You know it's not good when you hit the ground hard and then roll over to see this:

Yup, score one for Bike Ninja attacks on Denman's. Consider yourselves warned. I have no clue how that big of a stick wedged itself so perfect into the spokes, but let me tell ya, it stopped me in a heartbeat. Luckily I was on dirt, only running about 10 mph (coming off a slow turn), and I bounce (better than Squirrel). Damn, it still hurt a bit, but no permanent damage. I bent one spoke and the wheel is slightly out of true, but other than that, I was able to ride out at a pretty good pace. The wheel is getting dropped at the shop tonight for the boys to play with. I'll be riding something "different" on the taco ride tonight. Can't wait to see you guys on the trail!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


and no I'm not talking about our much loved and recently fought over trail at the Science Center. I'm just talking about day to day life and everything that goes into it. It seems everything these days is in a whirlwind- work, family, finances, weather, etc, etc. Let's break it down shall we?

Work: Just when you think you're on top, a wave of stuff comes smashing back over you. Take for instance this morning. I had one major thing on my desk to accomplish by days end and any various number of small side items. Along about 8 o'clock I get a call that one of my sub contractors doesn't seem to be fulfilling his obligations to meet deadlines on the jobsite and they want a meeting at 1 this afternoon to make sure I keep his butt in line. OK, so that throws a wrench into the day and now I'm scrambling to make sure all my ducks are in a row too. I decide that we should take over part of his work load and now I've got several large scale items on my desk, plus a phone call to fill up my day and then some.

Family: Actually, family has been pretty decent. Miranda and Corley were out of town a couple days last week and I was able to get the house cleaned. I also had a good steak dinner with Squirrel and his family on Friday night. It was nice to kick back and chill. Saturday was pretty busy as we hit the Science Center in the AM for some Halloween fun and then Night Eyes Saturday afternoon along with going out to eat that night. Sunday was pretty lazy though as Corley and I hung out in the house and watched the wind attempt to remove the shingles from everyone's houses.

Finances: I've been eyeing these pretty close as of late with all the ups and downs in the market plus the general piss poor shape of our economy. Things look pretty decent for us, but you can never make too sure. I even earmarked some money to possibly purchase a new mountain bike. Now, a week later, I've seen my quarterly IRA statement (down over 20% for the year), had our home equity line of credit shut down because they estimate my house is worth MUCH less (over $20K) than they told me 1 year ago, and I'm still wondering how our taxes, year end bonus, and sales for our business are going to shake out for the rest of the year. I hate credit card debt and luckily, we really don't carry any balances unless it benefits us with something like 0% financing and the like. This means we're just fine financially, but I like having the cushion of the line of credit for emergencies and/or to use as a slush fund in case something too good to resist should pop up (read new mountain bike). Funny thing is, I think this very thing happened to a number of other people who are probably a bit less responsible when it comes to spending and now they're up shit creek having no more access to easy cash. This leads to the current housing storm we're all hearing about and in turn drops my property value...

Weather: Wow, I can't believe the wild ass weather for fall. We go from torrential rains, to cold, to warm, to windstorms, to cold again in a week. Pretty wild. At least the winds helped speed the drying process for the center trails and word is they're about perfect for now. I'm looking forward to riding since it's been over a week now. I'm itching to get out and I have to practice up a bit for this weekend's Dirty Du. I've teamed up with Heather from PRC to ride the relay portion while she runs. I can't wait!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Autumn Flow

Hmm, what a difference a few days can make. From the hot spell Sunday afternoon to definite fall feelings yesterday and almost chilly today. Seeing the rain coming forth, I figured if I wanted to get any trail riding this week, I better make sure to get my ass out there yesterday. I can't say as I regret the decision! The weather was pretty much all you could ask for being just cool enough that arm warmers felt nice and you could still unzip the jersey to get plenty of airflow without being cold.

I parked at Ashworth pool and hit Rollercoaster on my first run through. The line is flowing faster and I'm hoping as the new section burns in it will continue to get better. After running there, I headed over dirty express to Denman's for a backwards loop. Just inside the entrance I ran into Steve checking out the handling of his new single speed Tricross on the trails. We both had no other plans than to enjoy the day so I turned around and we hit a forward loop together. He slowed a bit to walk most of the logs as I'd probably have done as well, but for the most part, the flow was just about right for fun and still being able to chat a bit.

We headed back to the science center where I lead a couple laps of Hillside. I am getting better at the trail flow up there, but still ran once route twice accidentally before finding the screaming drop I was looking for. I made sure to help Steve fully enjoy his gearing by hitting all the "good" climbs sans 1 or 2. Surprisingly, I felt pretty lively while climbing and riding last night. My legs had plenty of pep even though I kept myself pretty much in check all night and never ran that hard. I figured I'd be paying back Saturday's effort from Track and Back.

We looped through Rollercoaster again before parting ways. I did a reverse loop on coaster. It wasn't as fun as riding it forward, but still gave me some good work on hill climbing and was a good cool down for the day. I hit the parking lot right about 6:30 as dusk was starting to set in and ended basically a perfect afternoon. There were a lot of like minded people out enjoying the day right along with me which was great to see.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Track and Back

I learned a good lesson this weekend. You can only fake it for so long when it comes to endurance and training. I'm woefully out of shape when it comes to doing anything bike related that requires me to go for more than an hour or two at any type of reasonable pace. I need to spend some serious time if I want to get any level of bike fitness back for the next season. The plan is to kick my butt in gear and get to the gym along with buying a trainer and spending hours soaking the floor in my basement.

The morning was definitely a bit on the chilly side with temps hovering in the mid 30's when I rolled out of the house at 6. I thought the plan was to meet some others at Starbucks for some java before hitting the start of the ride. Nobody showed, so I sat and warmed up with a cup o joe and rolled to El Bait Shop around 7. The weather had turned quite a bit in that hour. It was now pretty much like riding in the shower with the amount of water vapor in the air.

My favorite part of the ride still has to be rolling through town with a police escort. It's great seeing a cop fly up to an intersection and block traffic for you. My friend Courtney and I were the early go getters and rolled clear to the start of the hills on Vandalia without seeing another rider. Grelk sliced by at that point in time cruising his streamliner. That was the last we'd see of him before we hit the turn at the racetrack. We held on to a pretty steady pace and made a quick stop at the Monroe aid station as our only stop on the way out. Somewhere around Reasoner the sun started to melt some of the fog cover off and we could see around us a bit. By this time, we'd hooked up with another rider from Iowa City and were rolling through a 3 person paceline. No real hammering, but we were upping the pace a bit now. I started to pop about 2 miles from the track and fell off the back as the other two rolled on.

We hit the track around 11 with just a shade under 18 mph average. Not bad for the amount of hills on the route. However, I looked back at last year's ride and I'd made the same jaunt a full mile per hour faster. This year they were a bit more prepared with food when we showed up. I was a bit disappointed that they only had water at the track though. After sucking down some lunch and giving the legs a quick break, I rolled a few laps at the track and headed back towards home. Courtney, The Rev, and I made up the return trio. The Rev pulled us all the way into Reasoner and I was getting slower and slower at that point. He made the executive decision to check out the bar and catch a bit of the game while we rolled on.

The roll home was pretty decent. The rolling hills took it out of me, but not quite as badly as I expected. We hit El Bait Shop around 3:15 in time for some beer and relaxation. I felt much better at this point than I did last year. Last year the last water stop wasn't set up so I was forced to trudge the last 15 miles on just a few sips of water in 90 degree temps. No worries this year as the stops were all staying put and the temps were much more agreeable. I downed my BBQ sandwich, two free beers, and added another on top before calling it good. I did win a new blinkie in the raffle so all was not lost. I rolled into home with 106 miles and 4700' of climb for the day. All in all, not too shabby.

Now here's where the training issue started to catch up to me. I've long contested that most anyone can ride a century, even a moderately hilly one like this. Having somewhere around 300 miles in the bank over the past 8 weeks, I was pretty sure I qualified as having no training for this ride and I made it in decent time with just under 6 hours ride time. However, I paid for it Saturday and Sunday after the ride. I think my body pretty much ate itself up to get me home. Though I really didn't feel that bad either day, I had absolutely zero energy. I bailed on riding Sunday morning and pretty much laid around most of the day yesterday. At least I proved my own theory...

Monday, October 13, 2008

CITA trailwork gets a thumbs up

Here's my thumbs up for the trail work day put on by CITA over the weekend. Saturday was cracked bright and early with me heading over to pick up a couple power buggies from Capital City Equipment. Now, allow me to hop on a high horse here, but I think the CITA guys are in serious need of some direction when it comes to what will and won't work in regards to power equipment. Having a little experience in such things, I thought this might be a bad idea. I wasn't disappointed. You see, power buggies are designed to haul heavy loads of concrete over flat compacted surfaces. What we were working on for the most part wouldn't remotely be considered flat or compacted. Hopefully nobody from the equipment company reads this, but we're damn lucky we didn't spend the better part of the day fishing a buggy out of the creek. We still put the buggy to use, but a 4 wheeler with trailer or small Bobcat would most likely have been a much better choice.

I showed up around 9 and dug straight in on getting things going along with the rest of the early risers. We quickly realized that additional tools and material would be needed so I headed off to Home Depot in search of some wood, wheelbarrows, and sledge hammers. With the plastic smoking and screaming, I got our supplies and made it back just in time for the work day to officially kick off at 1. I spent a good chunk of the afternoon ferrying broken concrete to the 3 different work areas on the trail and letting the manual labor hump it in from there to use as trail armor.

After I hauled pretty much all the concrete we could ever want, I pitched in and helped the crew at the entrance place armor. I've also had a bit of experience building stone/boulder retaining walls, so placing armor came as a pretty natural fit. It's heavy and tiring work, but all in all it went pretty well. That is, until about the last half hour when I slammed stone against stone and forgot to remove my thumb first! F'ing meow! That really stung. It's been quite some time since I've smashed my thumb that good. I retired from slinging stone at that point and directed the other two guys on how and where to place while I nursed my wounds. Stay tuned to the end of the post if you like gore...

All things were pretty much wrapped up by 5:30 and the remaining group walked all the new sections. Not too bad so far. I was pretty happy with most of the work and couldn't wait to give it a run. Not one to let being dog ass tired get in my way, I threw on my bibs and shoes for a trial run. I certainly didn't let it hang out, but I gave it a nice run through and enjoyed it except for one spot that just didn't feel right (more on that later).

Here are a few pics stolen from Justin and Squirrel of the day:
Attempting to get the buggy stuck (you don't see the 8+ guys it took to push it back out of this spot)

Morning break time

Armoring the trail (before my thumb got smashed)

Enjoying the fruits of our labor with a nature walk (and beer)

Andy says "Hey ya'll watch this"

That pretty much wrapped up my day as I was beat and headed for home. My day wasn't quite done yet though. As promised, here's your gore for the day:
Throbbing thumb wakes me up at quarter to 2 in the AM

Hmm, a swollen and mashed thumb and a drill bit, whatever could I have planned...

Tried to drill by hand first, but ended up breaking out the power tools

Ahhh sweet bloody relief

Sunday found me meeting the guys for our typical Sunday morning thrash through the woods. My thumb was still pretty damn tender so I assumed my racing heart rate would promote some serious throbbing. Luckily I was mostly wrong. We took our usual line through Denman's and I started working on my log crossing skills I'd been advised on by Pete and Lou. Amazingly enough they worked pretty well. I did have a few exciting moments as my timing was off which sent my rear wheel hurtling skywards while I tried to not go over the bars.

Most of the way through the first lap we met Tom who was out getting his dirty hundy in for the month. He couldn't have picked a much nicer day. We decided to double back and meet up with him for a loop through Hillside and Rollercoaster. The amazing morning temps held out and we worked up a healthy sweat. I even managed to stay upright with the exception of the damn creek crossing on rollercoaster.

Everyone else headed off to church and home after one lap, but I stuck through another trip through Denman's with Tom as it was such a nice morning out. Even a couple hours at work on a Sunday looming directly ahead couldn't darken such a sweet ride.

Posing with Tom at mile 38 of his hundy

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Ragin weekend

Another great weekend. Life sure seems sweeter once you've gone through the crap! Friday night consisted of beer, racing at night, a bonfire, and good buds. Really, it's hard to beat such a combination. I headed over to Squirrel's place around 5:30 to drop off a birthday 6'er I'd picked up for him and then to tag along on the ride over to set up for Quarter Rage. Fuller showed up a few minutes later along with yet another Steve and we headed off towards Denman's.

We made a quick beer stop at QT since you can never have too much.

Actually we came close to having too much as we had more than we could keep on ice so that necessitated we toss them in our bags and commence to drinking as soon as we hit the firepit. As more people started showing up I took off on some recon as we were riding the trail in reverse. After the lights went out we lined up for our turn through the darkness.

I was off in 3rd position with a few fast riders lined up behind me. With this being my first night time offroad experience, I wasn't quite sure what to expect. I will say that a headlamp from Wal Mart and a commuter light really aren't conducive to making good time through pitch black singletrack. At one point, Andy blasted up behind me with his light casting a huge arc of light. My speeds instantly picked up 2-3 mph until he dropped me without so much as saying goodbye. I did make it through and had a fun time. Surprisingly I was only slower by about 4 minutes at night. I felt like I was crawling along most of the time as I easily could outrun the amount of light I had available. Afterwards we kicked it at the firepit for another hour before I headed out. Sounds like partying went on another 2-3 hours after I left.

Saturday I rolled out early in search.need of a haircut. Part of working so much lately meant that I'd put trimming the hair on the backburner by a good 3 weeks or so. I was way overdue! After getting my ears lowered a bit, we all headed over to Grandview College to enjoy some activities and tour the new building they were dedicating. As Miranda and I are both alums and I'd been the project manager for the millwork on the new building, it seemed fitting that we go check things out. Of course it didn't hurt that they had a bounce house and other activities for Corley to enjoy. We were going to hit lunch there, but damn, it was like $8.50 for hot dogs, burgers, and the typical associated fare. Sorry, we'll pass.

I headed off to work for the balance of the afternoon while the girls went back for lunch and nap time. We went to run some errands that night, but found Costco closed by the time we arrived. So, we opted for desert over at the mall and letting Corley run around a bit before we hiked back to the south side.

Sunday morning was absolutely perfect for riding. For those that missed the Sunday trail ride, you guys have no clue what you missed. Lou and I were the only takers and we hit the road around 7. First up was a loop through Denman's where Lou blazed out of site in no time flat. At least this time we had an agreement to meet back up on Hillside. I paced my way through and then we reconnected for some fast spins through Hillside. We took a spin through Rollercoaster where we both flubbed the water crossing and switchback. On the way back out we ran into another pack of guys getting ready to hit Hillside and decided to tag back on with them. Another full loop of those two trails and we decided on a final reverse loop in Denman's to finish out the morning.

Now here's one of the best parts in my mind. Lou being the gracious guy he is, put me out front and let me hit it for all I was worth. Obviously he really didn't have trouble keeping up with me, but knowing he was back there, led me to pushing everything pretty hard. I was running way too hot in a lot of corners, winged a couple trees, and just pushed hard all around. I made it to the final log heading out and managed a perfect over the bars dismount as I once again stuck the chain ring into the side. As I was trying for some comparison times, I mounted straight back up and hit it out to the bridge. In doing so, I apparently missed Lou's repeat of my stunning display of skills albeit he was on the big entrance log versus my piddly one.

The rest of Sunday was spent hanging with my baby girl while Miranda had to work. We headed down to the farm. Corley had fun checking out the various critters and bugs including this fuzzy caterpillar.

We finally headed home just in time for bed and another weekend was down the drain.

Monday, October 06, 2008


Friday I played hooky for the first time in a while. It was just way too nice outside to be bothered with trivial things like work. Actually, I did work and only played hooky for a couple hours in the middle of the day. Miranda, Corley, and my mom were heading down to Howell's Tree Farm just west of Cumming to pick out some pumpkins and have a good time. I thought that sounded like a blast so unbeknownst to them, I decided to meet up.

Well, no good deed goes unpunished so I showed up at 10 and didn't know they had changed their plans the night before to meet at 10:30. Of course, with my wife's timing, that actually meant 10:45. So, I sat around and waited for almost 45 minutes. However, the day was beautiful, fall was in the air, and the sun was shining, so it wasn't exactly torturous.

We headed off to the kids play area first thing. There were tons of things to do for the kids:
A log to do balance beam routines

A big slide to go down

Plus they had a bunch of sings, a maze, teeter totter (I hadn't been on one in years), and a sand box filled with corn. Corley played to her hearts content and we were all pretty happy with the day.

We finally headed off in search of our pumpkins and picked out 3 in various sizes to take back home with us.

We headed back to town for lunch and I was still back in the office just after 1. What a great way to kill off a few hours in the middle of the day! Apparently I wasn't the only one thinking that as I actually ran into another guy from my office who'd taken the full day off. It also helped to temper Miranda's response a bit to me planning on hitting the Quarter Rage on Friday night.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

I'm a better person

I'm not better than you or anyone else really for that matter. I'm just better than other versions of myself. I'm better when I get time to destress and decompress. I'm better when I ride my bike.

Now that I look back at things a bit. I'm wondering what I did before to give me the same kind of release. I know I spent hours and hours in my garage working on various cars, engines, and other tinkering projects. I think the shift of focus to those projects always helped to relieve some of the day to day tensions, but I don't think it did anything like biking does for me. It's a whole different ball game.

I've got to admit, I think I'm pretty lucky for happening into this lifestyle. While I'm not quite the extreme commuter or daily junkie that a lot of people are, it's definitely a part of my lifestyle now and not just a hobby or sport I choose to participate in. Riding with the guys last night, Pete mentioned how he had bad memories of last winter riding through 13" of snow and ice with Fuller and I. I can't help but think those were some of the fun times and not something that should be dreaded.

I'm excited for the next few months. I've got things wrapping up at work. I've got some time off coming sometime. I've got some chores that have been put off that should be getting completed. I'm just looking forward to being more of a participant in my life again. I can't wait. I hope the rest of you reading this blog get infected with some optimism and enthusiasm today. Enjoy it, revel in it, and feel good about it. We all deserve it!

All banged up and no place to go

At least that's what my knees are telling me this morning. I took off a bit early to make sure I got plenty of quality time on the bike last night. I hit one loop of Denman's before the taco ride. On the very first logover I ate dirt. I stuck my chain ring right into the log, rotated forward on it, and slammed my ass into the ground. Apparently I took the brunt of the impact on both knees though one shoulder is showing some signs of battle damage as well.

I got back on and tried to ride out the pain as I typically do. Nothing doing today so I settled for the fact that I'd be hurting for the ride and just enjoyed the scenery instead. The good news is there were no further incidents of eating it, at least for me... I finished up my loop and headed over to the shop to meet up with the rest of the group.

We only had 5 or 6 of us leave from the shop, but apparently there was a big group waiting somewhere in Denman's. Pete and Lou announced at the beginning they were resting and anyone wanting to go fast was welcome to head out in front. Ya right, their resting is flat out haulin ass for the mere mortals we are. As expected, they were moving along well with Fuller behind them and me sitting 4th wheel. I just about clipped Steve on the big log pile as he slowed more than I expected, but luckily we avoided a tangle. After that we swapped back and forth a bit before I slowly fell off the pace.

about 3/4 of the way through, we hit the other group enjoying beers and waiting for us. We shot the breeze a few minutes and then turned around to ride Denman's in revers and then head for tacos. I was happy I'd taken the time earlier to get a full loop in as we were now shorted some of the trail. The fast guys took off again while I just held steady. One of the guys I don't know too well apparently bit it on an optional log over and then had his bike run over by Pete causing a bigger pile up. Nobody hurt, but one set of handlebars was slightly bent up. No other incidents, but I did ride the log in reverse that threw me down earlier.

Off to Giff's for tacos and Olde Style we headed. It was pretty cool having a big pack of muddy, happy mountain bikers weaving through the streets just like we owned the place. Since I didn't have to ride back home, I opted for doubling up on both tacos and beer. I was happy as a pig in shit! It's hard to beat good friends, good riding, and good times. Thanks to all you guys that I get a chance to hang out with. Riding is good, but enjoying the company just adds to the pot.