Friday, April 30, 2010

That's So Couch - The three Rs

After Vino's love affair with the lost art of letter writing this week, Tourdecouch pondered what else has been lost and refound again in the peloton?


Technically, unsure if he reads like books and stuff, but I'm sure he does - Mark Cavendish sure gives us cycling fans something to enjoy reading everytime he opens his mouth and that's how he makes it here.  It also brings us to the: 

Spot the Difference section

British as bollocks, spot the difference between these two:

Cavendish and Winston Churchill

 - Both have written books

 - Both said to have a lisp

 - mental health issues - read Paul Kimmage article again, I am worried.  Churchill also famous for the black dog phrase.

 - Quotable quotes:

Mark: “Lance [Armstrong] is the biggest name in the sport now, but I’m the second biggest."
Winston: "History will be kind to me for I intend to write it."

 - Victory Salutes - oops Winston, got it the wrong way



Lance wrote four letters of his own this week:

Mr Eddy Merx Merck Mercks Cannibal
Belgium, Europe

Dear Mr Cannibal

All promotional photo sessions with Pistolero must be cleared through me.

May I remind you, there’s no I in Mercx Mer …Mercks… your last name….

Remember, your son works for me. But for how much longer? Only you can answer that question

7x Tour winner, 5 x Father


Mr Chris Horner
Nearest McDonalds
Never really lives outside of America

Mr Horner

It has come to our attention that you are not eating team issue Honey Stinger snacks.

Johan’s already said you’re on thin ice and not likely to make it on the Tour team again this year. So, wouldn’t you want to do everything you could to make it? And yes, it is because you and Machado are doing better than me. There is I in Radioshack.

Should you continue to breach this part of your contract, your punishment will be wearing Johan’s line of clothes at all functions even though we’ll all be in the shack gear – don’t tell him, but I think they look like shit, I use the t shirts he gave me so Jose can wash my car  I think he also said something about chinos soon….he loves the chinos.  I also couldn’t get him away from the Radioshack jersey design either.

But seriously dude, I’ll have five kids to support soon. It’s not all about cancer.


Mr Graham Watson
Back of bike/in a pub or pizza place somewhere
Europe, The World

Dear Mr Watson

I was taking a peruse of your Twitter page recently and found this:

“There's some wonderful images of Contador and teamates on April 27th ‘the TDF cobbled stage 3 - see Wish I could have been there! “

This is in breach of your Mellow Johnnys contract which states that you must not tweet positively about Contador or his ‘team’ mates. And what about that link to – you know it’s velonews all the way baby.   You'd been doing so well all year.  Wha' happened?

You have been warned.

Dear Cleatus the foetus (I love that joke)

Sorry about your other new nickname Cinco. I think we got the idea off the Beckhams....(but I’m not so sure it WAS there)…but it’s still better than Spain (too close to Alberto), Europe (whatever), King Yoga, Pinewood Derby, Kona, Private Jet. I wanted to call you Trek, SRAM, Nissan, mellowjohnnyjr, Adelaide or Leadville but Twitter said that would breach their new advertising rules. I am a brand after all and this would be blatant they said. But more fool them, Cinco is sublim subl unconscious advertising for any Governor campaign I may want to do sometime.

Cadel too puts pen to paper:

Cadel’s diary – March 26th 2010

Thomas sure is spending a lot of time in the bathroom. I want him to come out again and play some more Michael Jackson, I’m scared out here alone with just my thoughts.

‘You can’t win the Tour’ ‘
Shut Up! Shut up.’.

Anyway, where was I? When I knocked on the door, he got all offended like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman when Richard Gere busts in on her in the bathroom, so I didn’t open the door or push it any further because I didn’t want to embarrass him about flossing. I wouldn’t want him to think I think he’s taking drugs. And well, you shouldn’t neglect your gums…ask Cav. Thomas sure drinks a lot of water too.

(H20 (1 litre) + microdose EPO) + ½ hour = still riding

Surprise testing:

(H20 (1 litre) + microdose EPO) + ½ hour coffee and chat with UCI tester = pass TDF 09 testing


Friday, April 23, 2010

That's so couch - 23 April 2010

Cycling to get a mockumentary?

It was a little funny TourdeCouch was reminded of the matching coldsore scene in Spinal Tap when both Johan and Lance were sick with the same thing, but Spinal Tap star  and thinker upperer of his own mockumentaries  Christopher Guest hanging out with Lance wasn’t something I was therefore then expecting. As a fave of the Couch’s, it was at first, disappointing. But my thoughts soon turned to comfort:

A) his arms are crossed in this photo – body english for “I hate being here”
B) he’s doing it for cancer
C) he took pity on The Shack and Lance for worst use of celebrity in an ad ever -
D) he was after material for a cycling mockumentary

D was my favourite thought. Lance and the cycling world and its history would provide much material for a mockumentary. Lemond, rivalries, and the badger too? You can’t make that shit up.

But it’s more like C – because I then discovered that Guest directed a series of ads for livestrong like this one  and this one  which I’m sure you’ll agree are just a bit better than the universe one…. (shudder)

Overheard at the Radioshack dinner table at Pais Vasco

Horner: Hey Li, want some of my fries
Li: No dude….I’m not really that hungry
Horner: Oh ok…but we’ve got another hard stage tomorrow, you gotta carb load and you've got to keep up with us old bastards.
Li: Yeah, I suppose you’re right. Even though I’m not hungry I can’t have that many carbs
Horner: Oh yeah, why
Li: I’m a little bit…insulin resistant….
Horner: Hmm. But you're looking more muscly and lost a bit of fat, what’s your secret?
Li: Um…lay off the McDonalds, I can’t believe you put that shit in your body

Which brings us to the:

The Cycling Rivalries


1st Pais Vasco
10th Amstel Gold


94th Pais Vasco
DNF Amstel Gold

Cadel v Contador

Understated, keepin' it cool

It's e-naf now

Cav v…Gr….no…Cav
We heard it all – Cav saying he was better than Greipel, then an article in Guardian with more choice quotes, then pretty much a near breakdown by the time he made it to Kimmage where he inadvertently admits that he really does need his family but he pushed them away.  And there was also this.
Cav:  “It might not be this year but I know I can get back, and then no-one will remember this. So it’s just putting up with it, just getting through it. I have real downers, really big downers.”

PK:  “When did you last have a downer?”

Cav “Recently. I wouldn’t have said that shit last week [he made headlines for an attack on his teammate and fellow sprinter Andre Greipel — ‘me on bad form is still better than him’] if I wasn’t on a downer. But sometimes you are not yourself and it’s easy to get down.”
He’s got his critics for a lot of things, but Cav always ends up being honest and pointing out that he stuffed up.

One thing I was comforted by from this article was it wasn’t the fault of the NHS for the state of his teeth – stupid bugger went training too hard too soon…and his gums bled.  My faith in socialist health policies is restored.

But let’s hope someone’s got Cav’s non-cycling back and he’s not just good for another headline…..especially a tragic one.

Twit's and blog's so couch

Cyclist and a gentleman - not going to quote what he wrote, but Robbie Hunter did what most press did about Terreblanche murder - confused homosexual sex with rape. 

Watch out London cyclists, Graham Watson is in town:
"..see what happens when you Tweet while driving in London..! I meant to say.." 3:24 AM Apr 16th via Tweetie
And watch out the Chinese-English:
Very trusting, these Vietnamese people - the Chinese would have taken me hostage until the morning... 2:26 PM Apr 18th via Tweetie

A first 4 me - resto' didn't take cards, no cash machine working nearby, went back to hotel without paying for my dinner! Will pay Monday... 2:24 PM Apr 18th via Tweetie
Johan Bruyneel tweeted this warning to Cancellara about his multi-wins after Devlaeminck arrogantly said he would've beaten Cancellara: 
Reading the reaction of Roger Devlaeminck after Paris-Roubaix. Winning that race 4 times must leave some brain damage. Pay attention Fabian!   9:36 AM Apr 11th via Seesmic 
Johan would know, he's seen this stuff before:
 Lance to John Wilcockson in 2008 in his cloyingly titled book "I'll kick their asses.  The Tour was a bit of a joke this year. I've got nothing against Sastre … or Christian Vande Velde. Christian's a nice guy, but finishing fifth in the Tour de France? Come on!"
Lance tweeted this about doping control 
"9:15pm. Bunch of kids over for a sleepover w/ the Armstrong kids. How to make it awkward? USADA shows up demanding blood and urine. #really?
But remember when he said this to John Wilcockson again for his book:
"I'm doing this for my kids...with news so accessible these days on the web, they'll be able to read any story they want. And I don't want them growing up and reading all these things about me and doping."
But they don't even have to google it, they only have to read his tweets to see his views on doping control.

And lastly, a rather telling quote from a website about Clenbuterol   (my emphasis)

The drug hangs around in meat animals, which alarms pharmacologists. The drug is known as a 'repartitioning agent' which means it reduces fat and increases muscle in animals, thus the use for producing a better meat animal -- that also produces residues of the drug in the food supply
More love songs and dedications

Tourdecouch leaves you with more love songs and dedications from one of Guest’s mockumentaries A Mighty Wind (also written by Eugene Levy,the guy singing).  Catherine O’Hara had not used an auto harp ever but ended up doing all this live.  The first one is played live at a concert for filming.  The second one too was performed at this live concert, but this one's from the Oscars as it received a nomination.  It's a pity though I couldn't find the Sureflo song!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

That's so couch - 8th April 2010

Avatar - The Sky People

Any of the Na'vi: ‘Why are you all here, we defeated the last lot of Sky People AND we paid our subscription, now just leave us alone.’

Brailsford/Sunderland:  ‘No no, we’re not here to hurt you or your planet.  We’re different Sky People, we too are of different skin, see, blue and black…and Plus…yes, even we have to pay for that too,except for Wiggo.’

Na'vi: You still haven't explained why you are here. 

B/S: We’ve come so you Na’vi can teach us your ways. We need guidance, how do we choose our Tour de France team?

Na'vi: Oh, ok.  Even so, how can we trust you?

B/S: We brought our god's paywall with us, don't worry, no one will be able to get through that and grab any of the unobtanium (quality news) without paying.  So, how do we choose our team?

Na'vi:  We will go to the tree of souls.  The team and the management have to all sit down around the tree, hold hands and chant.  It will then guide you.

B/S: Oh goody - a love-in, they're fab.

B/S: Wow, this place reminds us of our bus.  Oh riders, there's no need to cry, we'll go back to it soon
(When they reach the tree, the team do as they're told by the Na'vi and begin chanting)

Rupert, Lord of news that's not free
We're indecisive, guide us through this tree
Give us this day, our inspirational cliche
Blue Sky Thinking, at the end of the day
Climbers, roleurs, sprinters, all?
Or last ones to the bus the first to fall?

(A roaring thunder is heard)

Rupert: Oh, come on.  It's obvious.  Let the team choose itself.  But Wiggo's a given.  So is Gerro - we don't want the Australian tifosi to come after us.  By the way, tell Wiggo he'll find his tickets for the England games at the World Cup under his bus seat with his daily print copy of The Times - print, he's so old school. The rest of you bastards, you think I wouldn't notice all those downloads, you're bloody paying for The Sun page 3 from now on.

Cyclist and a gentleman - Robbie Hunter part 2

Robbie's tweets from April 1, 2010:

 - What is a 50year old woman doing with a kids scooter in a shopping mall..she even got the knee guards going.

- Ha ha on her way down!hence knee guards! Serves her right for acting like she is 5!

 - Almost got a photo of her on her ass but she got up to fast!she peeled out there in a hurry!!think she was embarrassed?

- Gotta get out these shops! Just seen a guy with more makeup on his face than his misses!! WTF isnt it april fools day tomorrow?

The Cycling Rivalries - Sky v Saxo v Radioshack

The Flanders cobbles brought out the true colours among the big boys.  Sky worked hard out the front mostly, Saxo took control of the race punishing the peloton with its pace up front and delivering Spartacus at the right time, and Lance rode really well almost the whole way without a team.  Here's how they all roll:

Sky training during the week before the big race, those zany kids:

(Team Sky website)

and here they are at play:

Saxobank are well hard.  You saw how they rode at the RVV. Not one gave in until they'd given all they could.  Serious business. Only people who are that serious swear a lot.  Matti Breschel swore his head off in a post Flanders interview after the bike mishap.  And here's how Jakob Fuglsang said Saxo likes to roll:

'...think that I used a wrong C-word in my last tweet...we some times use it internally in the team...but in a fun-kind-of-way!!' 
They work hard, they play hard and they swear hard. Just like this: 

For a while there, Lance fell well back.  But even with only one or two teammates still kicking, he seemed to bounce back to finish in the main group of chasers. He was so impressive, I was reminded of this:

Side effects of eternal youthfulness may include the runs....a lot. 

Twit's so couch

Graham Watson eating the crumbs that fall from the masters table? 'Just survived a nice evening in company of @mellowjonnys and @taylorphinney and others unspecified in Kortrijk - thanks for the free meal!  Apr 6th

Johan starting to think, this Lance comeback better be bloody worth it? ' Just got a call from my wife saying that our son Christian started to walk today, 2 days before his 1st birthday. Sad to miss this...' Apr 4th

Ben Day runs into not a bigoted cyclist hater like he first thought but a die-hard Giro fan who tells Ben what he really thinks of the Amgen:  ‘and then to finish the story the bloke says that he’s going to let his cows on the ro1ad before ATOC to soil the road #defecatingcow  Mar 31st

And couchiest quote for Paris-Roubaix goes to: Red Kite Prayer:
...really, in this race, the road is nothing more than a pavé-delivery device....If the entire race could be run over pavé, we, the fans, would be that much happier.

Friday, April 2, 2010

TourdeCouch's fave Flanders far...

Tour of Flanders 2009 from ken iino on Vimeo.

I do like this one too, but I like this coz it captures a bit for me what I'm yet to experience in 'real' life, there in Belgium- the crowds, the culture AND the cobbles.

Sunday night (for Australians)....are we there yet??