Friday, September 7, 2007

Worst of NYC Craigslist SPECIAL EDITION: L'Amour du Velo

Williamsburg, Brooklyn*. Bikes are important here. If you live in a large city chances are you have a neighborhood like it in your town. It is a place where young men and women dressed in the height of fashion walk their bicycles (also dressed in the height of fashion) up and down the sidewalks like Afghan hounds. A college town without a college, it is a land where the new residents while away the increasingly large number of years between childhood and adulthood by desperately seeking things to have in common with one-another. It is also the place where I saw the only Specialized city-edition Langster I’ve ever seen outside a bike shop. (It was a Seattle edition, by the way.) Depending on your disposition or your demographic, it is either heaven or hell. Regardless, as a person interested in the increasingly important role bicycles play in this segment of society, I like to check into Craigslist Missed Connections every so often and search out the bike-related posts. It’s like seeing bike trends with bat sonar, and I’m surprised bike companies aren’t doing the same.


*[now incorporating Greenpoint and Bushwick]

bike accident on corner of nassau/mannhattan [original URL: http://newyork.craigslist.org/brk/mis/415226820.html]

Reply to: [deleted]
Date: 2007-09-06, 6:00AM EDT


When i was hit by that car last night. You came to my aid! I cannot say thank-you enough to the guy who called the police and who picked me up off the ground, to the lady who gave me water, to the little crazy man who drank that water (and offered me beer) and even to the motorist who stayed behind, who was cordial, even though his freind proclaimed me as drunk and without brakes.
It was an adventure, and after several hours in the hosptial to luckly have no broken bones, all I can say, is thank-you to those who stopped thier day to help out a stranger.
cheers brooklyn!
and if that was you e-mail me so I can buy you a beer!

Location: williamsburg/greenpoint


There’s nothing funny about a car/bike collision, but this one proves a suspicion many of us have had for some time now, which is that all these new brakeless riders must be hitting something. When coupled with actual statistical evidence (as linked to in the comments section of this site some time ago by an astute reader), the evidence is nigh incontrovertible. Alas, who will save our nation’s young? Who will affix a simple caliper to the front (yes I said front) of their fixies? Who will convince them that added stopping power is more important than the ability to do bar-spins unfettered? (And who will convince them bar-spins are stupid anyway?) And who will remind them that they’re no longer covered under Mom and Dad’s insurance policy, and that one day their parents will refuse to pay for both their rent and their medical bills while they wait for their bands to become famous?


saw you with a cute track bike.... - m4w – 35 [original URL: http://newyork.craigslist.org/brk/mis/415085357.html]

Reply to: [deleted]
Date: 2007-09-05, 11:25PM EDT

This was a few months ago, but I remember you. My friend and I were walking back to his house when we stopped to get beer. I waited outside and I saw you with this cute little Bianchi track bike. I commented on needing a good lock and you said that your ex took it from you when you broke up. If that was an "I'm available" then I don't know what is. Anyhow, I think you're really cute and would love to take you out for dinner or something. I might be too old for you but I will leave that up to you.

Location: willie b


Ah, yes, the aged interloper. Upon getting dumped by his wife he immediately thinks back to the hot girl with the studded belt and the track bike he saw in Williamsburg six months ago and posts this gambit. If that was an “I’m available” then why didn’t you say something? When she said she didn’t have a lock, why didn’t you reply with, “Why don’t I lock your bike to a pole for you with my manhood?” She’d doubtless have replied, “Why, your manhood would have to be tremendous in order to do that!” You then could have confirmed, “Indeed.” Instead, here you are months later, writing a lame message, putting it in a bottle, and throwing it into the sea of desperation. I have a bad feeling the next step will be buying a Pista and riding it slowly through the ‘Burg, trolling for young fixie chicks like a dorkier Gordon’s fisherman.


so what color bike did you wind up getting..? [original URL: http://newyork.craigslist.org/brk/mis/410819190.html]

Reply to: [deleted]
Date: 2007-08-31, 3:02PM EDT


me - apple guy from bushwick with the beard getting my handlebars looked at (in the name of safety)..
you - cute redhead wearing glasses, said that you worked at cafe grumpy, getting ready to buy a new bike...
we had some really nice small-talk about riding single speeds, coasting, commuting to work in the city, and your friend who is a chef-turned-messenger (and loving it).

i'm kicking myself for not introducing myself.

drop a line, if you wanna pick up where we left off.

Location: williamsburg/greenpoint


Flopping-and-chopping your bars is one thing. Screwing up, going to a bike shop, and asking them if they’re OK to ride is quite another. This post does prove one thing, though: coasting is the new fixed.

65 comments:

mhandsco said...

Excellent as always.

A slight correction, however. Put your ear to the ground and you'll hear the rabble scrambling like they just opened the door on new Apple product day: cross is the new fixed.

Ronald said...

Damn-it must be nice to have time to notice shit like other people when.......

Prolly said...

I suspect there are multiple bike snobs because the posts this week have been weak.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Prolly,

Ha! Sorry, we'll all try harder for you.

--BSNYC

I must be strange said...

Sorry this is so long, and probably boring, but...

I must be an anomaly. I ride a fixed gear. I ride without a brake. I ride on the streets. I have never been in a collision. Maybe it is because I pay attention. Maybe it is because I try to ride the streets with bike lanes as much as possible. Maybe it is because I follow traffic control devices. Maybe it is because I'm not an idiot and I ride fixed because I like it, not because it is trendy. Yes, I know that brakes are a good idea. I also know that arguing about having/not having them is pointless. What if my chain breaks, what if your cable snaps? What if, what if, what if... Ride what you want and suffer the consequences of other people's observations and your own decisions. If I crash because I can't stop my brakeless fixie fast enough, it's my fault. If I crash because someone slams me from behind with their car, it doesn't matter if I have brakes or not.

Peace.

Anonymous said...

Sorry if I am the butt of a joke, but is this serious? Do people actually post tripe like this on craigslist? (I don't want to waste my time actually looking) I have this incredibly horrifying vision of these buffoons sitting at a table in a trendy coffee shop patio watching Quicksilver looped on video while posing for the love of their lives, pathetic. What's next, "Take Home Messenger" on TLC?

Doug said...

If #3 knows she works at Cafe Grumpy, why not just go to Cafe Grumpy? I don't understand.

I also don't understand this sentence, from #2: "If that was an 'I'm available', I don't know what is." The actual meaning of that sentence is, "I am confident that you are not available." It doesn't make any sense! Lordy, Lordy.

Brett said...

while on the subject of online bike postings, here's one worth checking out: http://cgi.ebay.com/Litespeed-Vortex-Compact-Frame-Easton-Carbon-Titanium_W0QQitemZ160155250807QQihZ006QQcategoryZ98084QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

Anonymous said...

There isn't a Portland edition of the Langster. Maybe you mean Seattle?

Prolly said...

PWND

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 1:07pm,

Yes, you're right. The green one with the wooden fenders. I get confused west of Hoboken.

--BSNYC

Scott said...

When I read, “Why, your manhood would have to be tremendous in order to do that!”, I nearly fell out of my chair.

A suggestion: substituting "member" with "manhood" would have actually made me fall out of my chair.

gewilli said...

cross is the new fixie only for the non-hip...

gears, brakes, complicated shit like that keeps the "trendy" away...

chain has to be on a fixie, singlespeed or coaster brake to be "in"

cross bikes will never be "in" thank doG for that

Anonymous said...

Request to Bike Snob:

Could you please perform the same service for Upper East Side cyclists, to save us the trouble of reading craigslist ourselves? I've been riding an old steel bike with fenders and a basket since before I knew that was hot and am just wondering if anyone has noticed.

Perhaps a Parrot said...

you're friggin' hilarious! I check your blog every day, and (hope you don't mind), have linked some of your better stories on my own blog. Thanks for making me laugh so hard I cry.

Anonymous said...

gewilli -

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but what if they are riding single speed and fixed cross bikes?

Sad to say it is becoming dominant in Portland.

And the bandana too...

Check this recent craigslist post:

"Saw u at cx race. You - skinny jeans and Vans, me- skinny jeans and Vans. The way you rode, so hot! Must be b/c you had no brakes. Can I wipe your muddy ass with my bandana?"

quaffimodo said...

Afghan hounds. Meow.

bikesgonewild said...

...gosh, this is all just SO confusing to a country bumpkin like myself...

...think i'll go out for a nice enjoyable bike ride...

...la de da...

BikeSnobNYC said...

Perhaps a Parrot,

Thank you! That's great to hear. I'm glad somebody's enjoying it. (Ahem--Prolly?)

Anonymous 2:04pm,

I am consistently stunned by the reports that come in from Portland. I think the cycling community needs to assemble the equivalent of a UN peacekeeping force. Or at least air-drop some brakes and derailleurs.

--BSNYC

Jim said...

Prolly, I suspect there have been multiple commenters on this blog, because the comments this week have been weak. Not that I'm a homophonophobe or nothin. Doug raises a good question, however. If Darwin's theories are correct, how the hell do so many stupid people manage to reproduce, and how is it that they can achieve a black-hole like population density in trendy neighborhoods of large cities without tearing a hole in the fabric of space-time, except for when they order fancy, hard-to-prepare drinks while in a very long line at Starbucks? Either Darwin was wrong, or being incomprehensibly stupid is no barrier to getting laid, reproducing, buying an overpriced condo, and getting a Double Decaf Foamed Lite Soy Ice Mochachino with a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Alexi said...

"incomprehensibly stupid is no barrier to getting laid, reproducing"

being stupid is no bar to getting laid, i've got a kid on the way to prove that.

len said...

are you kidding me saying that racing a cross bike singlespeed is trendy?

cross, especially in northwest is all about the slop and ders can be a big time weakness with chain suck and mis-shifts. the singlespeed also forces the rider to keep the momentum, while this can be more painful and tiring than crossing on a geared bike there are arguably many cross situations where it could be an advantage. besides track standing and drunken derbys it probably the discipline where the cyclist as at the least disadvantage.

i'm beginning to think some of ya' team kit wearing wannabes have been spanked by a dude riding a singlespeed klunker is cutoffs

bikesgonewild said...

...non sequitur...bikesnob...

...check fgg's 'paris-brest-paris' photos...now there are some serious fix riders, even including the dude w/ spd sandals (hate 'em), but props to them all...

...notice the details...

Anonymous said...

Looks like bikesnobnycSNOB.blogspot.com is available.

Jim and Prolly could hate all they wanted and nobody would know that there were 2 of them!

I wonder if CL will be flooded with fixies in a couple of years... I'm holding out.

evano said...

So I was skidding my fixie around town while smoking a cigarette, talking on my celly, checking out some fellow fixters' rides and thinking about that tight new custom top tube pad I'm going to design and have hand made in America at a custom shop for $80 the other day. Low and behold, I saw some guy pass me on a bike. Only, when this guy stopped pedaling, his bike didn't skid. It didn't even slow down! When I asked him about it, he told me that that's how bikes used to be made, and that you can still find them at some shops, even in different sizes. Apparently the trend for these "free-wheel" bikes is growing. I'm going to put my converted 1982 Schwinn Super Le Tour that I had powder coated red/white stripes to match my sweet Chucks on Craigslist for $800 tomorrow. Then I'll drop by my local shop to see if I can find a "Coastie" (that's what I call'em. Pretty soon everyone will, so remember where you heard it first). Only, I'll get mine without any pussy brakes.

Anonymous said...

Beware CL fixies, nothing says stripped hubs threadings and seized seatposts like a CL fixed gear for sale.

Most of those things will be worth less than the pointless/worthless toptube pads they're sportin'.

Anonymous said...

My band played a gallery opening in Minneapolis not too long ago for one of the hipper, drunker, more inattentive audiences I've seen. Anyway, my bitter amusement was topped off that evening when I noticed a rotting old 10 speed parked outside. The bike had been stripped of its shifters, but both derailleurs were left intact and the rear was being used as a chain tensioner on a multispeed freewheel. Best part: both brake levers and calipers had been removed. I wish I had brought a camera.

Anonymous said...

I should add that the bike was locked up, and hadn't been there a couple of hours earlier.

Brian said...

My fiance has a theory that people with flop & chop are single, whereas people with drop bars are taken.
You could see how this theory applies when browsing the missed connections.
There's an equation there somewhere...

SKiDmark said...

I don't know if you have more hipsters per capita, or if traffic is just more insane (definitely, been to NYC) but we don't have the problem here in Portland with hipsters smashing into stuff. If we did, it would be all over the news because there is already enough hatred for "fixies' generated by the Police and the local media. Maybe they just walk their bikes and take the MAX (trolley)...

If I needed a brake on my track bike (it sees the track too) I would put one on, but I don't. My fixed mountain bike has cantis on both ends.

Philip Williamson said...

The (non-sequit) PBP fixie pics are here: http://www.fixedgeargallery.com/articles/p-b-p/
Or: tinyurl.com/34nk5n

I like the lights. Do you like the lights? I like the liiights.

bikesgonewild said...

...lights is good...

...i'm not a "young dude" anymore...
...i have "experience"...
...i have "been around" riding awhile...

...so lights is good, front 'n' back...dusk 'n' dark...so i can "be around" riding and get more "experience"...


...but those P-B-P fix rides are pretty damn cool considering their owners put some serious k's on 'em in the rain & dark...

Anonymous said...

re: PBP fixed gear bikes

whaaat? comfortable looking, sensibly put together fixies? I am appalled!

man, that Gaansari on p.3 is nice.

and on p.9, the Bianchi Pista with a generator hub! American hipsters scratch their heads in utter disbelief!

Anonymous said...

I own that Seattle Langster and it is one sweet ride. Lightweight, great color and (with the help of a rubber band) it perfectly holds an Olso© iced latte over bumpy pavement.

_Tim

pippi said...

www.howtoavoidthebummerlife.com/weblog/archives/hippybongstocking.jpg

Singlespeed cross is here.

and it looks tasty.

Chris Sims said...

I've gotten a chance to read your oh-so eloquent posts, some while cyber-loafing at work, and some at home after a massage session with my Riddle (including the happy ending)!

If it weren't for some anonymous 'Riddle supporter' who commented on my blog (reference your editorial and corresponding comments on my bike) I'd have never been exposed to this banter and rant concerning the cycling community. I usually just look at the pictures and casually read the write-ups accompanying the FGG photos and go my merry way. After posting my intentionally verbose message to accompany my FGG entry I was ready to ride and put some miles on my Jonny, but then I got subtly sidetracked thinking about the resulting commentary.

Anyone who may be concerned about my gear-choice may care to know that Miami is flat as a board, and I prefer to glide along on the city streets at the comfortable cadence that 52:14 allows. I prefer gliding these days to spinning like a hamster (or gerbil?) while riding, daily, on my bike.

Anyone who thinks I am self-absorbed because I have a little fun dropping Conan quotes and tout my travel-inspired bike a little can contact me personally, as I choose not remain anonymous, and I can find out a little bit more about what makes you tick, if you tick at all... I do enjoy my bike, and although I do fold, rather than mash, my toilet paper when using it, I am not anal-retentive enough to have aligned my tire labels with my valve stems, but thanks to the person who pointed that faux pas out to me. The same goes for anyone wondering if I will actually ride a tight track bike like this on an actual track... the answer is yes, and with the leg strength I build riding 52:14 daily, a real track gear will feel like a granny gear on the velodrome... that training gearing, to me, is worth the locomotive-slow starts I make from traffic lights :)

Before I was introduced to this blog, I never heard the term hipster, because here in Florida we don't have many of them, and if we do have them they rarely ride prettied up bikes, they are driving around BMWs, Land Rovers, etc., and parking unabashedly in handicapped spots as they cartwheel out of their vehicles into the local health food store. The only hipster I remember I had the misfortune of meeting was in DC while at a LBS shopping for gear... This girl promptly slam-dunked a friend of mine (who was in DC for chemo for brain cancer) because his GT? mountain bike was not cool enough; she rode the fixie conversion like all the other kool kids...

As I am learning, we don't have the over-bloated, trendy, cliche, self-absorbed fixed gear scene as exists with our enlightened compatriots in NYC or other cooler cities than Miami. And that's OK, because I'd rather have to field the occasional remark from those same BMW and Land Rover drivers when, on the odd weekend or so, they pass me with their $5000+ unobtainium weekend-warrior bikes, spouting 'fixed gear, what are you crazy?'

My bike, though not cheap, is one of two bikes I have (the other being an ebay purchased franken-track) and my only form of transportation. I'm glad to have worked with Jonny Cycles and proudly represent him down here in Florida, sporting my intentionally low-bling but nonetheless meaningful color scheme as I previously described.

To all the haters, see you on the road... or maybe not.

To all those who are and/or respect cyclists, including me and my bike, a Big Up to you all.

Bike Snob NYC, thanks for what I consider to be a favorable review of my bike... I plan on writing less and riding more, but I'll check out your posts from time to time because they are pretty cool!

I'm out!

Chris

dozed off said...

At first I had no idea who Chris Sims was... by the eighth paragraph of his comment, I figured it out.

marlo said...

I haven't used this in ages! It's exciting:

TL;DR

Anonymous said...

Oh, Chris, where do I begin? Yes, there are hipsters here in Miami. And yes, they ride around on fixed gear bikes. You obviously haven't been to PS14. How do I know this? I work in a bike shop. These fucktards are constantly coming in with righteous old bikes wanting them converted to "fixies". Just go behind any American Apparel store down here and look to see the bikes locked up back there. I feel bad, because took those brakes off of those bikes. Oh, the track? It's in Cooper City, just about an hour and half north of here. But, maybe with that awesome 52:14 you can make it in an hour. Dude, you rock.

giantcu92 said...

Chris,

If you have to defend yourself against being a tool-bag hipster, then you probably are. I'll never see you on the road, because I ride outside the city limits, you know, in the country for hours on end, and rarely see any cars, let alone others on bikes. It's called, training.

giantcu92 said...

Chris,

If you have to defend yourself against being a tool-bag hipster, then you probably are. I'll never see you on the road, because I ride outside the city limits, you know, in the country for hours on end, and rarely see any cars, let alone others on bikes. It's called, training.

bikesgonewild said...

...don't really think there was any doubt that the bike was a pretty cool fix...
...but talk about loooooooooooooooong winded...
...don't justify, just ride...

Anonymous said...

I saw the accident on Nassau/Manhattan. The driver turned onto Nassau from Manhattan and hit the cyclist in the process. I'm not sure how fast one can react in those situations. I've been in the same sort of accident. Car turning into you coming from the opposite direction. I solved the problem by getting a high output light which drivers can see from a distance.

Anonymous said...

any chickie who can't afford to pick up a lock for her bike prolly also can't afford those regular visits to the gyno. run away!

shannon said...

And the delicious irony here Chris:

Your rebuttal is as "intentionally verbose" and self-important as your original post; which, of course, is an even bigger crack up. (Defending the indefensible is seldom wise.)

The great thing about BSNYC however, is that even though we're laughing at you (and yeah, we're def. laughing at you), it's all in good fun.

Enhancement Smoker said...

Chris, have fun blowing out your knees on your superbadass 52/14 while "training". Are you actually training for wheelchair races, silly man?

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