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Dave Moulton

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Drink Your Water

I have a pretty serious urinary tract infection. If you have never experienced one of these, I advise that you take all the steps to avoid one at all costs.

It involves frequent trips to the bathroom, and when there the best you can manage is a slight dribble, with a pain that I can only describe as “Pissing Razor Blades.” To be repeated every twenty or thirty minutes.

This all started quite suddenly and without warning in the early hours of Monday morning. I didn’t go to a doctor until I was pissing blood on Tuesday.

It is caused by bacteria in the pee tube, and is easily treatable with antibiotics, which I am now on. I am improving. The pain now is now at a level where I mutter the word “Fuck” under my breath, instead of screaming it out in agony.

I am not looking for sympathy, in fact I need my arse kicking for allowing this to happen. The doctor said it is usually caused by not drinking enough water. I am not opposed to drinking water, or even dislike it. It is just that I am not good at keeping account of how much, or rather how little water I take in on any given day.

I get busy doing other things and simply forget to drink water. This has been a painful lesson and I will do better in the future. Apparently I should drink 60 oz. of water every day. I have a large, 20 oz. drinking glass, which is a British pint. I need to drink at least three of these a day. I drink one straight off the moment I get out of bed. Another mid-day, and one in the evening. Sipping water all day long will not work for me, because I can’t keep track.

Originally the last thing I wanted to do was to go public with this. But then I thought if it means someone else can avoid going through this, it will be a plus. Please, drink your water, don’t go through the agony I am experiencing right now. Before this happened, I was priding myself that I could go the whole night with only one trip to the bathroom. So this was completely unexpected.

I am exhausted because I have not slept properly since Monday, but it is improving. My urine is clear now, still frequent but less painful. So I can’t really leave the house. I should be all better by this time next week when the antibiotics have run their course.


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Fuso FRX Criterium

When I first introduced the Fuso frame in 1984 there was just one model. It was simply a “Fuso.” Then after a couple of years I was getting requests for chrome plating, and an upgraded paint job, so in 1986 I brought out the Fuso “LUX” model. LUX short for Luxury.

So now the original Fuso needed a model name, so it became the FR1. FR for Fuso Racing, and “1” because it was the 1st. Fuso. In another year or so, I realized there was a need for something in between the no frills FR1, and the no expense spared LUX model. So I introduced the FRX model, which was the same frame as the FR1 but had some “Extra” time spent on the paint job. Hence the X.

The FRX was at a price point somewhere in between the other two models, and costing a little more meant that I could offer a few more “Custom” options. I did build a few Fuso FRX track frames, and even fewer Criterium frames, like this one. They are quite rare.

I only know of two on my bike registry. I am sure there are a few more, but I never kept an acurate count of how many of the various models I built. The reason I never kept better records, I never expected to be corresponding with owners and writing on this blog, 25 or more years later.

The Criterium model was based on the geometry of my custom ‘dave moulton’ Criterium frame.

It had a slightly steeper head angle of 74 degrees, and a shorter fork rake or offset of 1 1/8in. (30mm.)

It had a higher Bottom Bracket height, also the seat stays were the larger 5/8 in. diameter as opposed to the 9/16 in. diameter on the other Fuso models.

This is the reason for the different seatstay caps you see in these pictures here. These are the long fluted kind, the standard Fuso caps would not work with the fatter tubes. As its name implies it is a specialist frame built to be stiff and responsive, and handle quickly.

This bike was built in 1989, and is still owned by its original owner. It is a 60cm. (C to T) but looks bigger because of the higher BB.


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“Chillin” is a word that has crept into the Urban Dictionary. A word for “Relaxing, doing nothing in particular.”

Chillin, in my book would require having happy thoughts, or better yet no thoughts. Living in the moment.

Children do that so well, they are not thinking ten minutes into the past or future. Animals too, like the cat on the right.

Their brain is not developed enough to have a whole a lot of memories of the past, or thoughts of the future. Human kind’s intelligence and memory capacity is both a gift and a curse.

I left the bike business in 1993. Over 20 years, or a lifetime for some young person. Since that time I have practiced doing nothing.

If you think that sounds easy, the next time you go to a doctor’s office or take your car in for an oil change, try to sit in the waiting room with your hands in your lap, and do nothing. Do not pick up a magazine or fiddle with your cell phone. More important keep your mind blank, free of any thought.

In the 1990s to achieve this state of mind I would have to make a point to set time aside each day to meditate. I did not get into meditation out of any desire to engage in some mystic eastern religion, but after reading about the practice it seemed like a good idea.

At the time my mind was constantly filled with negative thoughts, and as a result my life was filled with negativity. Throughout my waking hours my mind was filled with either thoughts of the past or future. I was either reliving the bad events of my past, or worrying about the possible misfortunes of the future.

My daily life was a constant torment and I realized it was of my own making. In time I realized, no matter how hard I tried my past would never get any better. What was the point of constantly reliving it, over and over?

The same with the future, it was only imagined. I was mourning some future bad event before it even happened. Worse still, my negative thoughts most probably brought about the very thing I was worrying about.

At least by consciously sitting quietly and pushing all thought from my mind, I was not thinking negatively. At first it was extremely difficult, I could not go but a minute or so before a thought about something or other would pop into my head.

I became an observer of my own mind. I could see that one idle random thought would lead to another and pretty soon there would be a whole train of thought on a track leading to who knows where.

At first my meditation sessions went something like this: Sit with my mind blank… a thought pops in… push it out… repeat… sit with my mind blank. In time, the periods I could consciously keep my mind blank increased, and if thoughts did pop in, they were pushed out with ease.

Even more beneficial, in time throughout the day while driving to work, or during my time at work I observed idle thoughts entering my mind, idle chatter that served no useful purpose. I began to consciously push these thoughts from my mind and keep it blank.

It probably took me about five years of effort to banish idle chatter from my mind. Today I rarely set aside actual time to meditate, instead I practice keeping my mind blank at all times.

While I sit and drink my coffee in the morning. If I drive my car, or ride my bike, or as I already pointed out while sitting in a waiting room somewhere.

Having a blank mind while driving or riding my bike is actually better and safer than being deep in thought. To be deep in thought, especially about something troubling is to be distracted, even to be in a state of trance.

Driving or riding a bike does not require conscious thought to anyone with experience, it is automatic. By that I mean even defensive riding or driving is automatic. Keeping the mind clear of extraneous thought, one is actually more alert should an emergency occur.

Keeping my mind blank is like sitting in front of a blank computer screen, or having a blank page of a notebook in front of me. It is an opportunity for creative thoughts to appear.

Just as it is impossible to convey my thoughts to someone else if that person will not stop talking and listen, if my mind is filled with constant chatter, creative thoughts have nowhere to enter.

I can highly recommend doing nothing when nothing is required, my life is mostly stress free. It is not necessary to be thinking if all you have to achieve is waiting for the oil to be changed in your car.  It is not difficult either, but it does take time, it is not going to happen overnight.

It has taken me over twenty years to get to the peaceful happy place I am now. But looking back it took me a great many more years to get to the mental Hell where I lived before.


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Giro Republic Cycling Shoes

I love the simplicity of Shimano SPD Double Sided Pedals. (Left.)

I never have to look down to see which side is up, and they are easy to click in and out of.

They are ideal for the tourist or commuter, or the non-racing leisure rider like myself.

The main drawback I have found is finding a decent pair of road cycling shoes that are compatible with the two bolt cleats.

Strictly speaking these SPD pedals are mountain bike pedals and there is an abundance of mountain bike shoes available, but these all have the thick knobbley, rubber soles that look more like hiking boots than cycling shoes.

I also found the rubber knobbles tended to get caught up in the pedals, preventing a smooth clip in. Most road shoes have the three bolt cleat pattern and it is possible to fit adapters to covert to the two bolt cleats.

I tried this for a while, but road shoes have either a carbon fiber, or hard plastic sole, that is slicker ‘n snot. With these somewhat tiny SPD pedals this is not a good combination. More than once I failed to clip in on the first try and my foot slipped off the pedals, carving chunks of flesh from my ankle.

So I was more than pleased when I recently discovered the Giro Republic cycling shoe, designed with people like me in mind. (See picture above.)

The shoe has a stiff hard plastic sole, with two replaceable rubber pads either side of the SPD cleat. These rubber pads, along with a replaceable heel, not only make the shoe comfortable and easy to walk on, but acts as a guide for the cleat to engage with the pedals.

These shoes have laces that give them the old school look that I like. There are all manner of high tech fasteners for cycling shoes these days, but shoe laces are old tech and have been around since shoes were invented. They wear out, you replace ‘em.

The price of these shoes was around $150, but I shopped around and found a pair in a color I could live with, (The grey ones above.) for $74.98. I bought them from Competitive Cyclist. I have bought other clothing and helmets from them before, and have been very happy with their service.

Buying shoes online is always a crap shoot, conversions from European, to US sizes vary wildly between different brands. It seems these Giro shoes tend to run small, and as a result the first pair I got were too tight.

No problem, shipping was free, and a quick phone call to Competitive Cyclist and they emailed me a return label. I just resealed the box, stuck the label on, and dropped it off at my nearest UPS store.

I reordered another pair one Euro size bigger, they arrived within the week and fitted perfectly even with thick winter socks. If the length of the shoe is right, the laces take care of the width, and ensure a custom fit.

For those who might think about going to their local bike store to try on shoes then buy online ‘cos it’s cheaper. Please don’t do that, it is tacky. I don’t have decent bike store within 25 miles of my home, so I don’t buy much there. But if you are lucky enough to have a good bike store nearby, it is all about building a good relationship with them.

If you try on shoes but don’t buy, then show up a week or so later with a new pair of shoes on, they will know what you did, and all trust has flown out the window. So by all means buy online and save some money, but if you get the wrong size, send ‘em back like I did, and wait patiently for the right size.

Anyway, back to the Giro Republic shoes. I am very pleased. Clicking in and out has never been easier. These would be perfect for someone commuting to work. They come in black or brown leather, stylish and comfortable, you could walk around in these all day.

The purist roadie will say that cycling shoes are designed for riding the bike, not walking. That may be true, but at my age I do not want to be slipping and landing on my arse, as I carry my bike down my front steps. This could happen if I am wearing carbon fiber sole road shoes.


Addendum 11/22/15: I am using these Giro shoes with Shimano M540 Double Sided pedal pictured at the top of this piece. People are emailing me to say they have a problem clipping into these pedals with these same Giro shoes. I have experienced no such problem which would suggest there are variations either in the pedals or the shoes. Please take the issue up with Giro, as I don't have an answer.


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Opting out of the system

For the first half of the last century the Tobacco Industry pretty much had a clear run of things, and what a fantastic business model it was. Tobacco is relatively cheap to produce, it grows in the ground.

It requires very little processing to turn it into a product that is highly addictive, ensuring once a person is hooked they will buy the product for the rest of their somewhat shortened life.

There was a time when doctors would even recommend their patients smoke. They would tell their patients, it calms the nerves. Menthol cigarettes help congestion, etc., etc.

Through the Great Depression of the 1930s the Tobacco Industry did just fine, people had to have their cigarettes, they were addicted. I’m sure in many cases cigarettes came before food.

Everything began to change in the mid-1950s when the medical profession linked smoking with lung cancer and other ailments. Since that time the Tobacco Industry has declined very slowly. It is still the same fantastic business model it always was, just not on the same scale.

So what replaced the Tobacco Companies as industry giants? The Pharmaceutical Industry, the Drug Companies. The Drug Company’s business model has so many similarities to that of the Tobacco Industry.

Drug Companies tell us they spend billions on research, but once a new drug is approved it costs pennies to produce and the sky is the limit for what they can charge for it. One tiny pill can sell for more than the cost of a whole carton of cigarettes.  

Pharmaceutical Companies do not cure diseases, there is no profit in curing things. They produce drugs that control symptoms. Like the tobacco companies before them, this ensures the consumer has to buy the product for the rest of their life.

Just as some will go without food to pay for cigarettes, some elderly people have to choose between food and medication. The drug industry is pretty much recession proof, in the same way the tobacco industry was through the great depression of the 1930s.

It was the medical profession that brought down the tobacco industry. The drug companies will not make that mistake, they have the medical profession onboard as part of their plan.

I feel doctors and hospitals should be allowed to make a fair return for the service they provide. But it seems morally wrong to me that people’s health should be run as a multi-billion dollar industry. We have the medical profession, the drug companies, and now the insurance companies all taking their slice of the pie.

For fifty or more years people were told smoking cigarettes was a good thing, now we know different. Will it be another fifty years before someone tells us our whole health care system is wrong. I can’t wait that long, so I am doing my best to opt out now.

I grew up in the 1940s and 1950s when everyone smoked tobacco, I chose not to. Today I choose not to pay these ridiculous prices for a medication that will not cure me, and can possibly harm me.

My health plan is simple… To avoid getting sick if I possibly can. I am doing this by exercising (Riding my bike regularly.) and eating a healthy diet.

The other part of my plan is to avoid taking any medication as long as possible, preferably never. When a medication is advertised on TV, the long list of side effects they read off as a disclaimer leaves me wondering if the cure is not more deadly than the ailment.

This is not advice, I do not have the qualifications to give advice. It is simply an opinion, feel free to weigh in with yours.


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