Saturday, December 12, 2015

Fun With Charts and Graphs

So it's mid-December and winter hasn't arrived yet.  No snow to ski on, and too warm to swim.  So what am I doing?  Wasting way too much time wading through the cesspool known as the web.  But today I spotted a treasure floating amongst all the sewage.  Check this out this analysis of Lake Michigan water temperatures:

Here are some observations:
- Even though the lake temps are well above average now, they were well below average in early 2015.  If you recall the lake nearly froze over last winter.  So the lake temps started off cool in spring and stayed that way all the way through the swim season (mid-May through Sept).  This matches my impression of 2015 as a below average swim season (temperature-wise anyway).

- If you look at the two really great swim seasons, 2012 and 2010, the opposite occurred.  The water started the year warmer than average and stayed warmer than average all through the swim season.  I recall 2012 in particular as the year when we had three solid months of water temps in the high 60's and low 70's.

- So if this pattern holds (i.e. if the water stays much warmer than average this winter), the 2016 swim season might be very good or even great.  But of course at this point I have to curb my enthusiasm.  So many of my predictions about Lake Michigan have dashed on the rock piles of hard cold reality.  But it's something to dream about during the dark days of December.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

In Between

Tragically the Lake Michigan swim season is over, and my swimming has been tyrannized by walls, black lines, and chlorine.  For me, this is the "in between" season, the time between Lake swimming and cross country skiing.  If you, like me are looking for fun things to fill the gap, Kahuna has suggested a worthy activity in a comment on the last blog posting.  I reprint it here:

If anyone out there is reading the blog this time of year (even the buoy has gone into hibernation), note that the Bike Fed's Santa Cycle Rampage is set for Sat. December 5th. Eastsiders tend to start at Cafe Hollander on Downer at 9:00 a.m. God willing, Sheboygan Santa will be there, with his magic sausage, along with his coffee can collecting for World Bicycle Relief (see their latest video at this address: Bring your check or cash if you are interesting in helping. Last year we raised over $400 for WBR (because Sram doubles donations, that's enough for 8 sturdy bikes). Note too, to celebrate Shorewood advancing to the Silver Level of the League of American Bicyclists' Bicycle Friendly Community rankings, my group (Greater Shroewood Bikers) is holding a Shorewood Community Cycling Celebration, at the Rampage After Party, 4-6 pm, Sat. Dec. 5th, at Three Lions Pub. Hope to see some of you there.

If the weather is anywhere near reasonable I will do the rampage this year.  (Anyone know a good place to get a Santa suit?).

Kahuna, congratulations and thanks for your efforts on behalf of Greater Shorewood Bikers.

Friday, October 30, 2015

2nd Chance for Loss of Innocence (WARNING: unauthorized blog post)

Next Swim:  Saturday Oct 31st, NOON.  Sunday TBD.

Last Swims:
Sun Oct 25th 1PM
La, la, la insert last-swim-details here.  Or not.

The buoy says water temps are above 50.  Let's not miss another chance to have a last swim, and another chance to do more shots of.... whatever random thing people bring, and most especially, another chance to rip off the Patriarch's clothes.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

End of the Season and the End of My Innocence

Next Swim:  ?? 2016 ??

Last Swims:
Sun Oct 25th 1PM
Water Temp: 47
Waves: Gentle Rollers
Water Clarity: Good
Crew: Showgirl, Panini, Whatzzisname?, Itch, Diablo, Gumdrop, with me, Capt'n, Crash, and Scarface cheering from shore
Wetsuit/Skin: 3/3
Pitsch: 10

Sat Oct 24th 1PM
Water Temp: 55
Waves: Gentle Rollers
Water Clarity: Murky
Crew: Capt'n, Diablo, Mr. Anonymous, Itch, Showgirl, Crash, Patriarch
Wetsuit/Skin: 4/2
Pitsch: 7

Despite some bold Killepitsch-inspired talk about continuing to swim, I think realistically we've reached the end of the season.  Good thing, too, as the ladies, have lost all self control.  After practically forcing me to drink shots, Showgirl ripped off my shirt and Panini groped me all over with  her cold wet hands, while Crash and Scarface stood by and laughed.  Ladies, show us and yourselves some respect!  We're more than just handsome hunky studly sex toy playthings!  

Friday, October 23, 2015

Weekend Swim Plans

Next Swims: Friday Oct 23rd 5:30PM
Sat & Sun Oct 24th and 25th 1:00PM

Last Swim: Thu Oct 22nd
Water temp: 58
Waves: 1 foot rollers
Water Clarity: Excellent
Crew: Itch, Diablo, Panini
Wetsuit/Skin: 1/2

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

One More Day

Next Swim: Thursday Oct 22nd 5:30PM

Last Swim: Wednesday Oct 21st 5:30PM
Water Temp: 58
Waves: One foot rollers
Water Clarity: Good
Crew: Itch, Diablo
Wetsuit/Skin: 0/2

It's remarkable how the water temp has held steady in the upper 50s for the last two weeks.  It's beginning to look like we might still be swimming this weekend.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

I'm a (double) loser

Next Swim: Wed Oct 21st 5:30PM

Last Swim: Tue Oct 20th 5:30PM
Water Temp: 56
Waves: Small Rollers
Water Clarity: Excellent
Crew: Whatszhizname, Diablo, Itch
Wetsuit/Skin: 1/2
Pitsch: 0, but in it's place Itch brought some vile awful tasting substitute

Of all the love I have won or have lost,
There is one love I should never have crossed.
She was a girl in a million my friend,
I should have known she would win in the end.
I'm a loser
(Lennon & McCartney)

Today I got my comeuppance for calling people losers for showing up on the beach but not swimming. Today was my turn to be the loser. Not only did I not swim, I forgot to bring the Pitsch.  I paid big time. If scorn and humiliation were not enough, I was forced to choke down some Czechosolvackian  foul smelling terrible tasting concoction that's been rattling around in the back of Itch's Jetta since 1985.  I am writing this two hours later and I still can't get the aftertaste out of my mouth.  Yuch!