Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Apoca-Watch Update: Retirees on Tall Bikes


With the Pistadex in New York City at a relatively robust 430 (not counting this frame-only offering), it is easy to grow complacent. Lest we forget, however, that just last month Kanye West purchased a Cinelli Vigorelli. So it is vital to remember that the Fixed-Gear Apocalypse looms like a celestial trackstander, its handlebars growing ever twitchier as one of its slip-on Vans prepares to come down from on high and smite us all. And if mere words are not sufficient to strike fear into your hearts, perhaps this photo, sent to me by an alert reader, will force you to sit up and take notice:



Yes, that is indeed two-time Dauphine Libere winner Lance Armstrong enjoying a beverage from a styrofoam cup along with three tall bike enthusiasts. (And yes, that tall bike does indeed have a pie plate on it.)

If you're unfamiliar with tall bikes, they are essentially two really crappy frames welded together to create one extremely crappy bike, and they satisfy the age-old human compulsion to sit up high and look ridiculous. Tall bike enthusiasts are generally the sorts of people who developed a distain for authority relatively late in life, and so they engage in adolescent hijinx into adulthood instead of stopping after middle school like the rest of us. They also refuse to get jobs and they tell their parents to "shut up" well into their 30s. As such, they are fiercely protective of their image and integrity, and tall bikes are one of the few types of bikes not to have been "legitimized" by the bicycle industry in that no company offers a pre-built tall bike. (This probably has less to do with the fact that the bikes are stupid than it does with the fact that The Great Trek Bicycle Making Company just hasn't come up with a cheap enough way to ship the giant boxes yet.) In any case, for better or for worse they are a symbol of underground, alternative bike culture.

Or at least they were until Lance Armstrong, secreting an Olson twin in each pant leg, showed up on the scene. According to the tall bike owner's blog, "WE WERE AT SOME ART SHOW IN AUSTIN AND RAN INTO LANCE ARMSTRONG. WE ASKED HIM IF WOULD TAKE A PICTURE WITH US AND WHEN HE SAW THE TALL BIKE HE WANTED TO RIDE IT!! HAHAA FUKKKIN CRAZZYY!!!" Crazzyy indeed. Surely there is no more mainstream symbol of cycling than Lance Armstrong, and surely his chocolate winding up in the peanut butter of the tall bike scene, however fleetingly, is a giant, throbbing Reese's Peanut Butter Cup of doom. It's not just crazzyy--it's apocalyptic.

Here's Lance about to mount the bike:



Now, I wasn't there, but if I had been I might have tried to tackle Armstrong at this point. Perhaps by preventing him from actually riding the bike I might have been able to stop the prophecy from coming to pass. But alas, I wasn't, and he did:



Note the reflective heels of his Nikes glowing like demon eyes as he propels the hideous contraption forward and the rest of us towards our fate.

Incidentally, the Pistadex in Austin is currently at 400. While this is hardly apocalyptic in itself, thanks to Armstrong's tall bike-riding antics Austin will now not only be famous for being the home of Richard Linklater and Matthew McConaughey's naked bongo freakout--it will also be famous for its role in the Apocalypse.

Meanwhile, there were small signs in New York this morning too. On the Brooklyn Bridge, I saw a cyclocross bike with bullhorns. Then, in front of the Apple store in SoHo, where bike company marketing execs are rumored to scout out the bike rack for inspiration, the usual array of tendy bikes was absent, with just a couple of forlorn 10 speeds in their stead:



And further across town, a brace of fixed-gear freestyles huddled together, as if in anticipation of their own doom:


129 comments:

M. Weed said...

Awesome!

Anonymous said...

LEROY JENKINS!

Anonymous said...

now i can read it

Michael S said...

Writing entirely in capital letters makes one look incredibly intelligent.

Anonymous said...

top 5 aint bad

Anonymous said...

Since learning of the fixed gear craze through bikesnob, I have avoided going to areas of Austin likely to include fixed gear goofs (with mixed success as their range seems to be increasing to reach the previously un-hip suburban locales I frequent). It will be interesting to see how the cowboys with jacked up pick-ups respond to the competition should the tall bikers venture out similarly

leroy said...

Scary indeed.

Glad I took the Manhattan Bridge this morning.

All I saw was a guy on one of those little Dahons.

Aren't those the anti-tall bikes?

Anonymous said...

That CL ad for the gray pista is unclear. What if the sale actually is for the complete bike? That could mark a seismic shift for the pistadex!

Anonymous said...

does spelling fucking with three k's mean that they are racist or just stupid?

Anonymous said...

It takes a lotta dope to wanna ride one of those.
2x winner of the Dauphine...
haha!!!
Nice work Snobby!

datamokey said...

Warning. I fear that the influence of the apocalypse may be spreading west. No tall bikes as of yet, but I think that I may have seem my first fixed gear rider in Wyoming. His appearance was similar to what is described in this blog; unusual pants, questionable eyewear, non-practical belt with possible sid vicious type studs, and a sort of confused yet smug demeanor. Not being familiar with the geography of NYC, is it possible that there is a hill big enough there that due to his lack of brakes he could not stop and rolled all the way to WY? If so we are willing to return him, we will pay postage.Let me know if you are short 1 doofus.

erik k said...

holy sweet baby Jesus!
Lance Armstrong on a tall bike,
the end is near!

repent!

repent!

Anonymous said...

"Lance Armstrong, secreting an Olson twin in each pant leg, showed up on the scene."

"and surely his chocolate winding up in the peanut butter of the tall bike scene, however fleetingly, is a giant, throbbing Reese's Peanut Butter Cup of doom"

shaking with laughter ... coworkers are beinging to wonder.

oh man.... snoby, you win. i submit.

Anonymous said...

or rather, beginning*

Prolly said...

Yeah, Josh and Jacob were fucking thrilled about Lance. They posted it on our "board" a few times.

Pretty fucking rad.

Prolly said...

What's next? A monkey on a track bike?

ohhh wait

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CwexQZdrFmM

Jon is a Typhoon! said...

tall bikes in the corporate world:

Here at microsoft in the great pacific northwest, I often see two or three tall bkes locked up outside one of the buildings, could this be a sign??

broomie said...

Those photos are like smoking pot with your grandparents. Just uncomfortable and weird.

quentin loves caddy said...

19!

bob biker said...

Pistadex down, as in leading the NYSE (about-to-be) postwar collapse? Tall bikes on the radar, as in 70's stagflation undead? Ye gods, what in the bikeworld will preface the return of Richard Milhous Nixon, a zombie? Please save us, snobby! I'll call commissioner Gordon.

Anonymous said...

This morning I saw a guy with two perfectly functional brakes and a handful of gears skid.

Apocalypse, shmocalypse.

e* said...

Search for signs and wonders no more, Snob: The Apocalypse is Now.

This morning while getting a cup of copy, I noticed a lone, scruffy, rolled-up skinny-jean douchebag in the coffee shop across the street, posing conspicuously next to a goofy geometry track frame with chopped and flopped bars, requisite (and ridiculous) powder-coated wheels, stickers, top-tube pad, and spoke cards.

So what? you ask.
Where's the apocalypse? you ask.

Right here, brother: I live in Birmingham, Alabama. There's not a bike commuter, or bike messenger, or velodrome, for 200 miles.

The Apocalypse is here. Act accordingly.

Anonymous said...

Blogger Jon is a Typhoon! said...

" tall bikes in the corporate world:

Here at microsoft in the great pacific northwest, I often see two or three tall bkes locked up outside one of the buildings, could this be a sign??"

the iPod is to the Fixie
as the Zune is to the Tall Bike

Sprocketboy said...

Lance Armstrong, winner of the Classico San Sebastian, riding a tall bike! Is nothing sacred? I will never feel quite the same now when I eat a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup.

urchin said...

Armstrong on a tall bike--
Apocalypse aside, we have now seen the absolute last word in drafting buddies. I want some of that wheel...

Anonymous said...

Tall bikes are fun and anyone that disagrees is a hater of all that is fun.

Anonymous said...

oh, i hate fun haters

ZiP said...

anonymous 1:17:

do you mean

the iPod is to the Zune
as the Fixie is to the Tall Bike ?

Anonymous said...

Vive la apocalypse.

It's gonna be a good year to build a nice cheap fixed-gear.

Salut!

clayton said...

anyone familiar with the tallbikes for jesus crowd? they're a trip. there were a handful in nashville when i went to school there. seemed like an act of unadulterated narcissism.

Karl Rover said...

Once again, real life is much funnier than anything Hollywood could come up with. Lance on a Tall Bike. What's next, his jogging and bongo buddy Matthew M. being a father? Oh wait, that did just happen...

Anonymous said...

Floyd - "Hey, lance, did you hear your tallbike incident is putting your street-cred in the ranks of hipster douchebags?"

Lance - "Oh, who said that?!?!?"

F - "Blogger A, Blogger B, etc..."

L - "Can you print that out? I wanna frame and hang it next to my 7 Yellow Jerseys's, my NY Times Bestsellers' Merit Badge, my pickled testicle 'Francis,' and that 48-pack of used Trojans with Sheryl Crow's cervix imprint pounded into the reservoir tip."

ieavethelighton said...

so funny

mr.complaint said...

As a guy who has captained a balloon tired Columbia with two friends aboard, down Lombard Street while 3 sheets to the wind, I would like to ride a tall bike.

I have also ridden an ordinary, a tandem, a PPV and a pedalboat.

http://tinyurl.com/2poplz

I have not ridden a recumbent and it is not on my Bucket List.

I'm happy to say that I've never seen a tall bike rider riding no handed without brakes. Which is more than I can say about fgfsers.

clayton said...

"my pickled testicle 'Francis,' and that 48-pack of used Trojans with Sheryl Crow's cervix imprint pounded into the reservoir tip."

BAH

brian said...

I like the subject of these lone, far ranging wannabes turning up far from the herd in Wyoming and Alabama. Mr. Snob, I would like to hear your analysis of this phenomenon.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Brian,

It is interesting. Some may be proselytizing, like missionaries. Others may be astute converts. Still others may be home from the big city visiting family, bikes in tow. And of course, some are just lost, like the seals and whales that occasionally wander into the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn.

--BSNYC

bikesgonewild said...

...you mock & you jest, but wait til the "tallbike racing series" visits your town this summer...no lycra, no drug testing, in fact beer & buds are encouraged...

...this is lance's new business venture & it's his way of showing he's just a regular fun guy...matty maconaughey is his investing partner in this...

...it's been the talk of the industry for a while now...

Forrest said...

You should have said "Never won Flanders instead" of 2x winner of Dauphine.

db said...

And of course, some are just lost, like the seals and whales that occasionally wander into the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn.

So, Navy sonar sends some pods of fixed-gear freestylers out of their territory?

Anonymous said...

no on has called it out yet - two time winner of the dauphine? perhaps one of the most clever lines I have seen. That and the crow comment...

thefutureofamerica said...

"WE ASKED HIM IF WOULD TAKE A PICTURE WITH US AND WHEN HE SAW THE TALL BIKE HE WANTED TO RIDE IT!! HAHAA FUKKKIN CRAZZYY!!!"

I think if you replaced 'bike' with 'cock' that would be perjured directly from the Penthouse forum.

Cool The Kid said...

BSNY always with a thumb on the pulse on the NYC biking scene...

I too have seen the migration of the hipster from the brakeless freewheel track framed top tubed NJS ready beast to the haphazardly, art shop welded tall bike. On a corner in Prospect Heights, I saw two dudes dripping with irony like Lance Armstrong dripping with androsendione after a race... wearing the cool expression of indifference while riding down Washington Av. on tall bikes...

I turned to my roommate and said, 'its only a matter of time before the trust fund hipsters are welding together autographed limited edition Cinelli frames...'

I for one, being the shameless hipster I am, have signed up for a welding class with my local community college. I am also buying two 'Chinese Food Delivery' bike frames...

leroy said...

Re seals and whales in the Gowanus:

"Fish gotta swim,
Birds gotta fly,
But they don't last long if they try."

Does the Tom Lehrer observation quoted above apply to fixies far from home?

Did I see the first robin of spring this morning? Does it count if it was frozen solid?

Questions, questions, questions....

Anonymous said...

My favourite tall-bike-rider quote (insert whiny voice): "I wish people would stop staring at me."

Matt in Seattle said...

I would like to qualify this statement by revealing I have ridden tall bikes numerous times and I have found them nothing but fun times. I don't own one and likely won't ever, but they're just plain fun and I'm supportive of them.

That being said, I can in no way argue with the main point of this post. The Apocalypse is surely neigh when you see something like this. If the bike companies get a hold of this information and run with it we're all doomed to become the gum on the Almighty's giant sandal of destiny. The apes will once again roam unchecked in all reaches of the world and everything will be covered in their shit instead of ours. This cannot be allowed to happen! Austin, if you're out there and you read this, you must stop the Lance from accessing the tall bike at all costs. Maybe a Cheryl Crow paint job will do the trick...

Adam said...

The best part about this? Lance never returned the bike.

His flashing Nike's mocked the poor kids, who were too stoned to realize that they no longer had a ride home.

broomie said...

Anon 1:58

Well said, good point and funny.

The Skidmark AKA said...

Tallbikes went mainstream when they did the Coca-Cola / Cyclecide tallbike jousting commercial over 2 years ago.

My tallbike is fixed and the frames are lugged bitches.

Tallbikes go back as far as fixed gear bikes, google "lamplighter" or "circus bike".

What rock do you people live under?

Heckler said...

I guess this is where the FGF's go, post apocalypse...

http://tinyurl.com/m8agz

Anonymous said...

What would be the best method to fuse two carbon frames together? I want a lightweight tall bike, but it must be vertically stiff and laterally compliant.

Francis! That guy is a nut!!

clayton said...

mainstreem looks terribly different from such disperate perspectives. i see maybe 1 tallbike per month in person, rarely in the media, and i hear occassional tall bike discussion on bicycle specific blogs.

hardly mainstreem from my vantage point. one commercial two years ago and your lugged bike count for little.

broomie said...

Just because you saw it on TV or a clown ride it, doesn't make it mainstream.

My rock is the next door to the Rubbles. Sometimes I can see Betty undressing.

Nick said...

In my best overwrought Mel Gibson, "Gimme back my sport!"

Nick

datamonkey said...

e Said: "This morning while getting a cup of copy..."

Hey E, were you across the street at Kinkos? Remember I am laughing with you, not at you.

The SkidMark AKA said...

Like I have the only tallbike in Portland...

Sometimes I see more tallbikes than "fixies".

Doesn't Black Label ride their tallbikes anymore? Maybe it is too mainstream for them, and the rest of the NYCers missed the boat (bandwagon)?

gttim said...

...secreting an Olson twin in each pant leg...

That thar is comedy!

The incident would have been funnier if he had done a Julich and put both wheels in the air! The Olsens flying out of his pants shrieking.

"Hey Lance, have a few beers and a couple of shooters. Wanna ride my tall bike?"

Anonymous said...

When the fixed-gear trend dies, could it please take the ironic-hair trend with it?

Commiecanuk said...

Anonymous said...
What would be the best method to fuse two carbon frames together? I want a lightweight tall bike, but it must be vertically stiff and laterally compliant.


Not to mention as fast as vaseline-coated hamster coming out of Richard Gere's ass, both in a particle accelerator.

Lance Armstrong said...

whew..that was fun, we were all hopped up on HGH and EPO..that tall bike is a great way to score with "women". Francis approves.

Dr. Martin Van Nostrand said...

You won't find fixies in front of the Apple store anymore, it's impossible to ride a fixie while watching Youtube on an iPhone, the greatest example of American ingenuity, like, ever.

Rumor has it Steve Jobs is buying Blackwater to run his own moral disaster, "iRaq". (iRan in 09)

Jim said...

Yep, the world is coming to a pretty end when the winner of the 2003 Texas Dirty Du is seen atop a Tall Bike.

On the other hand, I can only voice approval for CHUNK 666, because while tall bikes might be an atrocity, and jousting tall bikes might be a travesty wrapped in an atrocity, jousting tall bikes *on fire* is sublime.

clayton said...

skidmark, as mentioned previously by bikesnob, portland doesn't count. yours is a fairly unique city.

honestly, i saw more tallbikes in nashville during 4 years of college than i've seen in NYC. black label and others do ride them here, but i just don't see them that often. maybe they're too busy dumpster diving?

Anonymous said...

Lost on it all - is the Mullet - how can it get any better than that!

Bill Basso said...

The upside of the apocalypse is a phoenix. Sure there will be a dip in fixed gear riders, but the end result will be an even larger user base than at the peak of the fad.

For example, there are more joggers now than during the peak of that fad. More surfers today than during the Beach Boys.

Hopefully the brake-less users will be culled from the gene pool and some great pedalers will evolve to the ranks of top competitors and a large number of people will find better fitness and more efficient living.

Hats off to our hipster hooligans.

mm said...

Hahahahahahahahahaha awesome.

Pascii said...

If you look at it from a quantum perspective, us merely talking about the fixed gear apocalypse tugs down on the Pistadex daily. So keep it up BSNYC! If you want it bad enough, it will happen.

fashion josh said...

HAHHA
HEY THANKS FOR POSTING A LINK TO BLOG!!

clayton said...

no wonder it had three K's.

The SkidMark AKA said...

There's tallbikes in Chicago, Minneapolis, Richmond, San Francisco, LA. I even saw one the last time I was in San Diego four years ago. I know you guys like to think of NYC as the epiicenter of all things cool, but man, since CBGB's closed...

the skidmark aka said...

Wait...tallbikes aren't cool they're stupid!

Jonathan said...

The URL of the Tallbike Enthusiasts blog?

fashionjosh.blogspot.com

The prosecution rests. One suspects he got a tallbike after reading about them in Vice magazine.

openyoureyes said...

I would pay money to see a tall downhill bike. The crashes would be spectacular and it might kill off both wretched (I ride the chairlift up the mountain instead of riding up) downhillers and (it is more important to me to look cool than to ride) tallbikers.

Would any of you pro-tall bikers be interested in a tall-bike freeride session at Whistler?

clayton said...

skidmark: the point of debate was whether or not tallbikes could be considered mainstream, not whether or not tallbikes maintain a presence in any quantity in a few urban centers.

great point johnathan.

stream of nothing said...

the world's gone crazy. Lance looks almost apologetic.

rick said...

e*:
The guy you saw in Birmingham isn't a sign of the Apocalypse; it's a sign that someone bought a loft in the City Federal building. You'll know they've sold 8 or 9 more when you see an alleycat races. . .

red said...

Jon is a Typhoon saw tall bikes on the Microsoft campus? I've never seen them here. I suspect Jon is a Typhoon is seeing normal bikes, and he is only 2 feet tall. (That's 2 meters if you're Canadian, European, or pretentious.)

Anonymous said...

I'm quite sure there are no tall bikes on the Microsoft campus. However, if I ever see one I will affix the Bike Snob NYC Seal of Disapproval to it.

SkidMark said...

broomie seez: "My rock is next door to the Rubbles. Sometimes I can see Betty undressing."

nice comeback - crazzyy funny!!!

Andy Pandy said...

When normal items start to mutate like Guatemalan twins it is a clear indicator that the apocalypse and /or radioactive isotopes are prevalent. I for one am disappearing into my concrete bunker for four score and twenty years with my bible and perhaps one or two of the Olson twins

leroy said...

Yabba dabba doo, Broomie!

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:14--I hope you were being funny with your metric conversion.

Johnny Payphone said...

"Stupid", yeah, that's the best Vice could come up with, too, after begging us to be in the mag then dissing us when we declined. Now, I'm no tallbiker, but you tip your hand when you reveal how threatened you are by a bunch of punks out there having fun and -gasp- not giving a shit about some blog. I've got a job, and it's a fuckton more fun to do than suck dick at the office. Fortunately being a-scared of tallbikes is so common there's a word for it: "Douchebag". You are a "douchebag".

MJ said...

"two-time Dauphine Libere winner Lance Armstrong"

That may be the greatest piece of bike writing I have ever read.

Stay Classy Bike Snob NYC

Steve Jobs said...

You would never catch a man riding a tall bike on the Apple campus

weenies!

cartman said...

You guys are all gay, I'm going home!

Anonymous said...

i heard about a young man who operates his fixed-gear bicycle via tennis ball stuck onto the stem, sans handlebar while visiting seattle. i wish i could have seen it.

Anonymous said...

Hey biksnob,
just started reading your blog. was wondering, why do you seem to have such a problem with fixed gears?

is it just the people riding them, or the bikes themselves? if you hate something just because trendy people like it, that's just spite, not criticism. i'm not trendy, and i just starting riding one and it's great - speeding up, slowing down, and stopping all through the forward and backwards fluid motions of your legs. never having to move your fingers except to hit the front brake on emergencies. and being able to slow your bike to a crawl before red lights... you should try it. i never ride my other bikes now.

Anonymous said...

jonny payphone (where you live). found guilty of what you assume all others to be, you pretentious little ass pirate. go back to the radio shack and living in mom's basement in your world of fantasy. you couldn't even get hired to suck dick. "oooh...I met lance, I'm cool by association!" no...you're...not.

Anonymous said...

anon 12:17...keep with it for a week or two. it should become obvious. hang in there!

at least you have a front brake (and a helmet hopefully).

Anonymous said...

I'd rather see a big tall bike craze sweep the nation than live through another second of the fixed gear trend. Just an actual velodrome riders 2 cents.

waitingaround said...

"Seelie, 27, is an avid cyclist who over the years has befriended members of tall-bike clubs through Critical Mass rides and while studying photography at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. For the last three years, he has photographed the Brooklyn chapter of Black Label. "

ah, Pratt, the very center of the cheapo, anti-consumerist bike movement!

waitingaround said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Philip Williamson said...

anon 12:37
I think BSNYC has a problem with hipster posers latching onto a cool bike thing and making it a trend that has nothing to do with cycling and everything to do with scoring with the girls who are driving up the prices of vintage '40s dresses.

I think Anonymous 12:43 was patronizing you, but he didn't get your name right.
You should fight.

In the big picture, scoring with girls is MORE IMPORTANT than cycling, but still...
No. Wait. Integrity more important. Dammit, I'm confused. Small head make big head wear mullet, get chicks. Yesss...

Bluenoser said...

Hey red,

learn conversion and get a mac.

no wonder windows suck

-B

sorry, I'm just being pretentious

Ogre said...

Nerds!!!!!

brendan said...

man, vintage ten-speeds are totally the new fixed gear bikes. those folks at apple are cutting edge.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Johnny Payphone,

I make fun of just about every aspect of cycling on this blog, so bear in mind that as often as not when I make fun of something here I'm also making fun of myself. Maybe not in this case, as I don't ride a tall bike either, but it was nothing personal. I'm also not "scared" of tall bikes, but there's certainly plenty that's silly about them (just like there is about roadies, and fixed-gear riders, and so forth). I think the real "punks out there having fun" are indeed "not giving a shit about some blog." And the very least, I think they relish the disapproval. As renegade cyclists (or renegade anythings) if you're not pissing people off then you're doing something wrong. And I can respect that attitude. If they're sincere they're not looking for anbody's praise or acceptance, and I'm sure they'll keep having fun and Never Mind The "Douchebags."

Anonymous 12:37am,

I have no problem with fixed gears and even ride one myself (though certainly not exclusively). As above, I make fun of everything, and there's a lot about the fixed-gear trend that's just funny. But certainly the positive side is someone like you getting more into cycling because of it and having fun. That's what's important. Enjoy the bike.

--BSNYC

Bikesgonewild said...

Vote Hillary in 08!

meenamade said...

hey "waiting around",
you should keep making yourself feel better about not getting accepted to Pratt by making dumb blanket statements like the one above. admittingly there are a lot of people affiliated with Pratt Insitute that are probably just as obnoxious as you but there are plenty of them who support bike culture in a non-pretentious manner.

tod seelie is not an advocate of blind consumerism or following a bike trend. he is genuinely passionate about photography and subjective subculture. he has lived in rat infested apartments with flying roaches in bedstuy. he has taken steps to document his relationship with bike culture and the people involved in an intelligent and respectful manner. so before you make some flippant asinine comment again about the school someone went to you can "wait around" for a swift kick in the pants.

Nick said...

"and he is only 2 feet tall. (That's 2 meters if you're Canadian, European, or pretentious.)"

Err, ahh. As an ex-engineer . . .that's actually about 0.61 meters.

Nick

clayton said...

johnny payphone, if you were responding to skidmark calling tallbikes "stupid" then you missed the point. he was being facetious. anyway, if "tallbikers" don't care about some blog or the opinions of its cubiclled dick suckers, why are you here to so passionately defend them with personal attacks against people who could very well be doing something similar to whatever it is you do.

you do realize there’s more to this world than attempting, unsuccessfully, to “fall off the grid” (Johnny payphone? i saw you in a film once and think we even have some mutual friends if not acquaintances…). i mean, if you’re a total nihilist, that’s fine, but not everyone is, and dumpster diving and often ill-informed idealism don’t make a difference to much of anyone but yourself. so while many people actually do sit in offices counting beans (many even enjoy it!), many of the vagrant/rebel/renegade/what-the-fuck-ever cyclists i’ve met, and i’ve met many, suck enough of their own dick to have lost site of reality long before losing the ability to function in any role meaningful to the betterment of humanity.

Anonymous said...

Don't you see, 2 forlorn 10-speeds outside the apple store. The girl from the movie Juno riding around on an old 10-speed. The 10-speed is the next hot bike.
I better get the designs on the table here at Trek, we can't fall behind the times.

waitingaround said...

meenamade wrote: "so before you make some flippant asinine comment again about the school someone went to you can "wait around" for a swift kick in the pants"

meenamade, neither your response nor the piece linked in this post are doing anything to diminish my assertion that Pratt is for moneyed, pretentious twits.

(for the record, when i did go to college (and you were in grade school), i had no idea what Pratt was.)

ibisss said...

Tallbikes are the Dungeons and Dragons of cycling. The rest of the cycling world cares about tallbikes as much as the rest of highschool cared about twelve-sided dice.

ZiP said...

In response to meenamade's comment:

I agree. Tod Seelie's very genuine in his documentation and participation in the scene. Going to Pratt has nothing to do with life experiences before and after the time in an art school.

Anonymous said...

The first picture bothered me for awhile until I figured out why. LA looks completely uncomfortable, which is understandable because no matter how much those other guys try to look like hipsters, they can't hide the fact that they are complete losers/nerds.

In fact, I think this applies to most self-consciously hip cyclists, whether fixed, trackies, or roadies. Cycling is basically just one big nerd magnet.

Except for commuters, of course. We are completely cool.

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:14--"I hope you were being funny with your metric conversion."

Yes, he was being funny.

And to bluenoser and Nick -- stand up guys, they're goin' over your heads.

meenamade said...

im not going to use any more of this blog space to banter with idiots. however, i will allow myself one more indulgence.

from 'waiting around' to me:
(for the record, when i did go to college (and you were in grade school), i had no idea what Pratt was.)

yeah, keep using unintelligent superficial judgements such as schools attended and your seniority as a means to be condescending. maybe if you made fun of the sounds i make when i eat or the fact that i cant take my shoes off indoors or your face would melt it, you would be entertaining. unfortunately, you are just annoying.

Anonymous said...

Got a handful of tall bikes in Kansas City. Just thought I would add to whoever is keeping the list.

Anonymous said...

Dispatch from Chicago -
My husband saw something I wish I had seen for myself... two kids bikes welded together to make a "tall bike"... only it was the height of a regular bike. Now that's funny social commentary.

Oh and he also saw a girl hurt herself when her tall bike broke in half. Ouch.

the skidmark aka said...

Was I being facetious? Actually I think they are stupid. That's why I build them. Totally ridiculous and loads of fun. People in cars laugh and point at them. I don't care if they are laugh "at" or "with" because at least they actually saw me, instead of running me over.

Anonymous said...

skidmark-

I love the justification for a patently unsafe bike design being safety.

Brilliant!

Anonymous said...

facetious, maybe not. ironic? yes.

Anonymous said...

When I saw the first photo, I concluded that Lance had been photoshopped into it in a brilliant bit of satire. I recoiled in horror to see the grainy, Oswald-Loch Ness photos which followed. Lance really needs a 9-5 job to keep himself out of trouble and Olsens.

c_c_rider said...

even in Birmingham, Alabama???

holy shit

Lance Armstrong said...

Don't forget I finished 102nd in the 2005 Paris-Nice, how quickly you assholes forget.

c_c_rider said...

i wonder who's hoping to win these?

Anonymous said...

A couple of years ago, in my hometown upstate, I witnessed the local Tall Bike Dude, a vegan warrior modern primitive type, pull his converted diesel ambulance into a steep driveway, get out, open the backdoor and inadvertently spill 55 gallons of untreated fryer grease down the driveway and into the storm drain. The week before we watched as he spray painted his junkyard monsrosity with a bunch of little kids hanging around in the mist. So fucking green.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 9:47

That's almost as green as smashing TV sets in vacant lots. Gotta love the lead in CRTs.

Mr. "now I'm no tallbiker" Payphone,
please don't be so disingenuous.

You're better than that, of that I am sure. Keep up the ratting!
You're doing good stuff and I may not join you but I'm in no position to criticize (except for the TVs).

Tallbikes ARE fun, you just have to be willing to deal with all the attention. Either you lap it up or you do your best to let it run off your back.

Ordinaries are fun, too AND fixed-wheel and many ride them no hands.

And Wheelmen?
They wear funny outfits.
Not unlike many "normal" lycra-clad cyclists who also garner disapproval from the public.

Riding ordinaries in the city (outside of an event with Wheelmen) is something I've only seen once (and when the streets were really icy). But it was a joy to see.

Thanks, BikeSnob!

And take a few deep breaths, Skidmark. Don't be one of the jocks taking over the moshpit from the D&D punks and spoiling the fun.

ZiP said...

http://velospace.org/node/5679

Anonymous said...

I wonder if LA would joust, I'd go up against him.

The writer of this artical too I would joust, but out of malice not comradery.

oh, by the way, I ride a tall bike and, I've always had a problem with authority...when I was 5, the principal of my school told my folks I was a delinquent and I would be locked up before I was 18...never happened, my tall bikes to fast...they couldn't catch me.

Cutthroat Tony said...

The responses found in here are incredible!

JohnnyP! How many COUNTRIES have bicycles, alone, taken you to? I love you and miss you. Tell the Aussies that I think they are weird, but I would still like to visit.

I can defend others but only so much, and when I speak... I speak for myself first and my family second. I hope to God, Allah, Valhalla, or whom ever the hell is in charge of things down here, that tallbikes do not ever become mainstream or commercial. Tallbikes are NOT the epicenter of those that create them. There is a lot more that goes on in the freak bike world, and if you don't know... you weren't meant to know. You're welcome to come watch, and even join in, but sitting back and judging anyone but yourself is just needless unproductive narcissism. Again, on behalf of myself, my crew, my family, and all other bike clubs... I hope that our world is never threatened by your world. You can have what is important to you. Which seems to be having your noses up other peoples asses. What a sad boring life. Good luck to all that read this, it's up to you to make your own life amazing.

Free thinking,

-Tony
Cutthroats RVA.

larse said...

yeah, dope tallbike....let's some day bike ride 2gether...i'v tallbike too...cool, if we bike ride ...visit here, haha:)

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