Perfect timing for the one hour we are about to enjoy on the quiet mountain. Just completed our first 75 mile week in over a month.This morning, I went through all of this slowly, striving for real time. We have solved several bike problems (for now) that posed a serious threat to take me off the bike for good, like now. A small reconfiguration of the leg straps is preventing a recurring assault on my groin (never a good thing).

I grabbed him and began bashing his head on a cinder block. I have also been treating myself to a bottomless pit of real or imaginary pulmonary failings. Halloween was, as the IOC says at every Olympics closing ceremonies, the best ever. This time, we are planning a metric century (64 miles), which will double as an evaluation of how we think we might hold up for an actual century -- Tucson is less than a month away. I did not, however, consider the end game, and, when I finished the steak, there were three bites stranded on my tongue. Even so, peaks throughout the Land of Enchantment tower more than a mile over surrounding cities and towns less than five crow-flight miles away.

Up to this point, the dream was unremarkable for me. This produces up-close wide angle views of many miles of high mountains.

So, I think I have won the war when it comes to the physical experience of skiing, hiking, biking, etc. This technique is not putting a dent in how much I miss just being with my family out there. Mercifully, the discomfort instantly disappears when the pedals stop turning. We went back to the pulmonologist to review the round of tests I referred to in the "Suck It" entry. So we brought up the diaphragm pacing system we have been considering. The U of Utah is ready to schedule us to come in for the procedure. "We can probably get the doctor in to see you between patients". My reading on the one test shows "minimal" diaphragm function. This will turn out to be a most unfortunate entry if I go in for the pacer evaluation and find out the diaphragm is already dead, and that I have been breathing by way of a process known as "magic". [Here is why I erred on the side of publishing the piece. A long time ago I wrote about new ALS symptoms: "It's not your imagination, and it won't get better". I'm not as nimble with the wheelchair as I was a year ago, so I parked and watched from various locations. Highlights: The best costume: Kat Winski, as a recently spayed dog. If there was a little kid nearby, I remained motionless even if there was a teenager ripe for a scare.

To address the back, I have messed with ergonomics and flexibility. I worked my way up slowly but the first bite pills have taken out of the pain was on 600 mg advil, and 1000 mg tylenol. Once again, no physical examination (that's three visits with no doctorly behavior). "Tell us what you know about the DPS, please." Keep in mind the device was approved by the FDA in 2012. Over the next few minutes we heard him say the following: 1) Not too early to call hospice, but let's start with a referral to palliative care. 3) Most people who have ALS don't go this route, but you could have a tracheotomy and mechanical ventilation. This, "Schneebeck's First Law of ALS", has held true for more than four years. Including the cone to keep her away from the healing incision. Jimmy and Niko were unconcerned with such collateral damage. At any moment from until about there were 20-50 people in the front yard.

I stood at the top of many runs and filled my lungs with crisp mountain air, armed with fair notice of what was coming. How many people with roots as deeply sunk in skiing have taken their last turns with no clue about the finality? But here's the thing: I can't imagine the cost that would come with getting over it. It is a few hours a day, and I get some great stories when they come back. I figured there would be plenty of time for that later. My quads are melting away faster than grass grows or paint dries. The last of a three-part rant about pulmonary issues. I have seen him three times, and, the knee pat aside, he has never laid a hand on me. It's an implanted device that will keep the diaphragm pumping longer and happier. I took an appliance box, decorated it like a restaurant table, put a foil roasting pan in the middle, cut a hole through the box and the pan, put my head up through the holes, wore a scary mask, and had Jean place fake potatoes and vegetables in the pan around my head. A local radio station named our neighborhood the best place in the Burque to troll for treats (they may as well have just called our house the best house in the city because we are the class of Altura Park). About 1000 visitors and over 55 pounds of candy came and went.

Along comes a heart attack, a car crash or a bad diagnosis and we have a worm feast. I lived my pre-ALS days at the cabin in full throttle. Weakening muscles in my low back mean pushing hard brings searing pain to the lumbar. Our one hour ride has turned into over the course of about two months. So, I'll keep hammering away as long as the back, neck and friends will allow. Happy Hanukah, Chanukah, or however it is correctly spelled. Probably not the last you will ever hear from me about the topic, but this is all for now. Now, don't forget to call me if you get sick." I'm not making this up. This one was 50% higher than the first two (still a 40% drop from July). We had an hour set for testing before the appointment with the doctor, but the tests took only a few minutes. "It is time to make the difficult decision", he said. Everything he said (except the piece about having to leave New Mexico, which he made up) is coming. You have to have more than "minimal" diaphragm function to even be eligible for the pacer. The back and forth I went through on whether to publish, as well as the debates I have with myself within the piece are illustrative of a point worth making (even if it is repetitive or sort of obvious): ALS may not cause cognitive dysfunction, but it does mess with your head.] Days 1583-1595, November 8-20, 2014. The commotion in the yard could be heard from a block away. When I was the creep in the casket, I had an age limit.As we pushed off to break the inertia, the tips of our poles chirped like crickets as the poles bent forward in the densely-packed snow.Two sharp metallic clicks from each of our poles (a family tradition for good luck).As I chased him down, he retreated into a huge slipper. ALS may not cause cognitive dysfunction, but it messes with your mind. Before my pulmonary dysfunction has a chance to take me down, a far more sinister threat is coming for me. For some time, I have had an annoying habit of biting my lip when I yawn. Five to ten times a day, I chomp down violently on my lower lip. Once or twice daily, some sort of spasm sets in and I can't release the grip of my jaws. Until someone got close enough to be in the danger zone. One curious victim reacted with a piercing scream and ran backward several steps. Jean introduced herself to an eight year-old as a "zombie transvestite Robin", quickly correcting herself, "oh, you don't know what that is". I'm not going to a lot of detail here, but a port-a-potty is useless to me, so I was committed to staying as-is until we returned home. If there is a headline from my personal day on the bike, it will read: The 110 mile El Tour de Tucson ain't in the cards. But the food must be slippery like heavily-buttered mashed potatoes. Very tasty, but I had to four bites before the fourth one pushed the first one far enough back that the first one fell into the swallower. I have never tried it, but this must be the method recommended in the instruction manual for a beer bong. But the venerable Virginia mountains, which geologists say are roughly four gazillion years older than the Rockies, lay low above the historic rolling landscape of western Virginia.I trapped him in the slipper by throwing several hacky sacks in behind him. She regained part of her composure, marched back to Niko, put an accusing finger in his face and scolded "you know what? A parent leaned over to quietly give Superman a hand -- "you know, like Aunt Michelle". Top two reasons: (these are the smaller font under the headline) Man spends five hours on bike prairie dogging; reports being "very tired" after 62 miles. Tomorrow is the Day of the Tread, and the one year anniversary of the last time I had a cycling accident (after 80 uneventful miles, we took the entry into our driveway too hot and flipped the tandem). This went fine -- three on the tongue, the fourth pushes the first down the hatch. The easiest food -- actual food -- to get down is Jeff Croasdell's Italian Wedding Soup, which seems to consist of orzo, chicken broth, spices, olive oil, butter, bacon grease and crack. It is the dinner equivalent of a hot Krispy Kreme doughnut. The foliage is beautiful, but generally available only in small doses. New Mexico's southern Rockies were born of a less violent collision of plates than the northern chain.With the rat still firmly in my grasp (he was screaming obscenities at me), I paused for a moment to clear a tickle from my throat. The Village of Angel Fire sits in the Moreno River Valley, which is funny because the "Moreno River" exists mostly in the form of a vague and invisible sensation of cool, damp air in the Valley.