Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Too Much Irony, Too Little Time: The Elusive Nature of Bike Culture

In my first post yesterday, I posted this picture, and commented that the owner had more money than sense:


Well, later that day I received an email from the owner himself. It turns out that I've actually referenced another bicycle of his on this site as well:


In the case of the earlier post, I wasn't being particularly dirisive (for me anyway). I was simply comparing Fixedgeargallery and Velospace and therefore juxtaposing two Pista Concepts. But I do admit that the comment about the BMC came off a bit harsh. And, understandably, the owner felt compelled to point out that I had in fact mentioned him twice and that he had not expected to be singled out for simply riding his bicycle to a bicycle race. Not only that, but another reader felt compelled to comment on his behalf as well:

Snob,

The fixster with more money than sense was actually racing that frame at Kissena on Super Sprint Sunday - with lovely carbon fiber track bars. Frankly, I think it's cool that it doubles as his ironic coffee bike.

You actually commented on something of his before - carbon track drops with no tape on them. It turned out that they were special carbon bars with integrated grip texture in the carbon. No wrap needed. You got a hard-on for this guy or what? Two strikes!!!


I'd hate for anybody out there to think that I've got a vendetta going against anybody. (Or, worse yet, a "hard-on.") I mean, the truth is that I do have some vendettas going, but they're all against either quasi-celebrities like Michael Ball or just things that irk me like pie plates and people who lock their wheels and skid in front of you on the bridge bike paths. I didn't mean to single this particular guy out. As such, I think he deserves an explanation.

Most importantly, as I said earlier, the "more money than sense" line was a bit harsh. But, in my defense, it is technically true. Let's take a look:

Sense

"Sense" is hard to quantify. Different things make sense in different circumstances. A radiation suit doesn't make sense at the beach, but it does in a nuclear power plant. (Or at the beach at Coney Island.) Similarly, a BMC Track Machine might make sense at the track, but it's probably not the most sensible bicycle for street use, and that's how I saw the bike being used. I've created a Sense-o-meter to illustrate this:

The top bicycle is a sensible city bike, and the bottom bicycle is Theo Bos's Koga Miyata. As a city bike, the BMC ranks closer to the Theo Bos bike than to the city bike. Obviously, if we were talking about olympic velodrome use, this would be inverted. But since the bicycle was being used on the street, this is the scale that I applied.

Money

Money can be as subjective as sense, but it's a bit easier to quantify since you're talking strictly in terms of numbers. An expensive bike is an expensive bike no matter where you use it. To illustrate this, I've made a Money-o-meter of track bikes. At the bottom is a Bikesdirect special, which goes for $299.95 for the complete bike. (Represented by a half a dollar sign.) At the top is a hand-crafted Vanilla track bike, which starts at $2,800 for just the frame. (Represented by four dollar signs. Yes, there are certainly more expensive frames out there, but you have to cap it somewhere.)



The BMC Track Machine costs about $1,800 for the frameset (depending on where you buy it), and as such ranks pretty highly on the Money-o-meter. It is represented by three dollar signs.

So we've established that the BMC is not the most sensible city bike, and we've also established it's pretty expensive. But does that mean the owner has more money than sense?

Money Vs. Sense

Putting the Sense-o-meter and the Money-o-meter side by side and plotting a line between the two points at which the BMC appears on each, it would appear that the BMC track machine is indeed more expensive than it is sensible given the circumstances in which it is being used:


So, assuming the owner actually paid for the frame (which is likely though not a given), it's reasonably safe to say that he indeed had more money than sense.

Of course, I don't think the real issue is that I wrote inaccurately. I think it's that I wrote glibly. Simply saying he's got more money than sense doesn't take into account myriad other factors. Still, I don't think what I said was so bad. I happened to commute on my road bike this morning, and if I were to apply the Sense-o-meter and the Money-o-meter to myself for my commute I'd definitely have more money than sense today too, and I'd begrudge nobody for saying so. All the same, I suppose when I posted the BMC I could have said something velo-politically correct like, "This person is exhibiting an inverse relationship between bike cost and practicality for the occasion," but you've got to admit that's a little cumbersome.

The other thing that bears mentioning is the commenter's observation that the BMC is an "ironic coffee bike." The owner corroborates on his own blog that he did indeed have ironic intentions. This would not be the first time I've missed fixed-gear irony. I also apparently missed it when I got mad about that King Kog photo, which they went on to explain was actually intended as a joke. I'm actually concerned that I seem to be missing so much irony, since I'd like to think I have a decently-functioning sarcasm detector. I suppose the reason I'm having so much trouble is that I just don't expect the irony to be so darn expensive. I mean, I understand Judah Friedlander wearing a $10 World Champion hat, but $1,800 is a lot of scratch for some irony. Then again, I guess that's just more irony. Also, the owner was surprised I singled him out on the site, yet his bicycle was in fact a rolling ironic statement. My grip on irony is clearly tenuous, but to me that would imply he'd want the ironic statement to be noticed. Wow, this is getting confusing. I may need to take a class or something. In any case, I just hope he rides and enjoys his bicycle, whether it's in sincere mode or ironic mode, depending on bar choice.

While I'm on the subject of fixed-gear irony, I'm not sure how much is intended in the following video, which is a promotion for a new book called "Rain City Fixed:"



I've actually been in touch with the person who put this book together, and I congratulate him on finishing it and wish him the best of luck. I do admit I'm sort of baffled by the "bike culture's" compulsion to preen and model and to photograph itself and its fashions and thereby emulate some of the more disappointing aspects of the larger culture, but I'm sure someone out there can tell me what I'm missing. I'd hate to put my cycling shoe in my mouth two days in a row.

232 comments:

1 – 200 of 232   Newer›   Newest»
Anonymous said...

Podium!!!

ant1 said...

podium

g said...

podium day 2

Anonymous said...

odium

Anonymous said...

Yesterday I thought that the phrase "more dollars than cents" would have had a nice ring to it.

Love your O-meters! Excellent reasoning and illustrations!

bikesgonewild said...

...i just elbowed some wannabe out of a top ten placing...not cuz i wanted to place but i just wanted to elbow a wannabe...

Anonymous said...

lucky 7!!!

AH said...

In my track racing days it never once occurred to me to put flat bars on the bike to ride around town. That's pretty pretentious -- like taking an F1 car for a trip to the convenience store. It screams "look at me!!!" which is the antithesis of cool...

g said...

but wouldn't that be ironic too?

scott said...

I think, Snob, that you may be interrupting somebody's ridiculous good times. Shame.

With that said, I'd like my ironic coffee bike to be a BMC TM. The FGF's hanging out in the gas station forecourt across the street from my coffee shop would totally swoon, and their waif fixette girlfriends would be mine.

Anonymous said...

So an EAI Bareknuckle rig at $1500 built up is on the level, if one rides it with purpose on the streets?

I really think the whole package needs to be considered part by part, i.e. a Chris King headset ($150) and Phil Wood hubs and bottom bracket ($450) on a crap-ass Peugot ($100 on CL) is senseless, but would probably look balanced according to your meters.

Gonflé said...

For Chrissakes people. If you:

a.) Live in NYC,
b.) Ride a fixed gear (ironic or non) and,
c.) Can't stand a few jokes at your own expense...

DON'T read a blog that makes jokes at the expense of people who live in NYC and ride fixed gears.

It's sort of like not checking your ex's myspace page so you won't see how much fun they're having.

Anonymous said...

"Wow, this is getting confusing. I may need to take a class or something."

NO, NO, NO. You don't need to look outside of yourself for answers... Snob, you are at your best when your answers and inspirations come from within!

What the heck -- did some nasty lawyer send you a letter?

wishiwasmerckx said...

Snob, I am hungry. Could you please make me a pie chart for dessert?

ant1 said...

Great graphs Snobby, but your artistic talents would be better used on fresh scorn (Will?), rather on justifying previous examples. There is no need to defend your views, you had us all at hello.

urchin said...

Wow, Bob Mionske's got nothing on you--will you be scheduling any talks in support of your new book 'Snideness and the Law: Your Rights and Responsibilities as a Snob?'
My group would love to have you speak.


We'll, um, throw in some free Photoshop tutorials...

Anonymous said...

"I'm a good fucking writer." -irony

Anonymous said...

a bit off subject, but these guys just finished RAAM on fixed gears and averaged over 15mph for the entire 3000 miles. Not sure of the money/sense factor, but I would have to say lower in the latter. Still pretty impressive. link

SD said...

Curiously, the writer of the nasty letter seems to be not a lawyer (as one would expect to be on a BMC), but a record producer. Sensitive artist types really should ride snide-comment-proof bikes.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Ant1,

I think it's important to audit yourself once in awhile.

--BSNYC

Anonymous said...

They should ride whatever the fuck they want.

AnnaZed said...

I think it's important to repeat yourself once in awhile.

AnnaZed said...

RTMS, you cheated.

ant1 said...

Snob,

Good point, we'd hate to see you turn into the Enron of the Blogosphere.

ant1 said...

Annazed.

good one!

BikeSnobNYC said...

AnnaZed,

That's cheating? Should I put it back? We need an official!

--BSNYC

ant1 said...

Doesn't the UCI sanction this blog? I'm sure Mr. McQuaid would love to arbitrate.

Anonymous said...

Best post ever! Love the graph. Some people need to be spoon fed, others need you to digest it for them and then puke it down their gullets!

Anonymous said...

snob, yer too kind, too diplomatic. i applaud your aplomb. i however am not, i tell it like it is: that bmc w/miniature handlebars is rediculous. please, someone tell me the performance value of handlebars that short.
outdone only by the idiot talking in the vid wearing the blue cap, and the idiots photographing other idiots beacuse what? they ride a freaking bike? i don't get it, i just don't get it. he was talking as if he just made War Dance w/the help of Nelson Mandela for christ sake.when what he did was get vain geeks to "pose" w/bastardizations of what the lots and lots of people have been riding for years!!
these folks are the antithesis of anything even remotely cool, unique, interesting-they are lemmings, at best. oh, big surprise a chick riding a fixed gear bike in NYV w/o brakes got hit by a cab. idiots. nothing ironic about it, just idiots.

Strayhorn said...

Must be fewer people in NYC than my daughter alleges. You hit the same guy twice?

Anyway, I've never felt compelled to take a photo of my bike. It's sitting here in my office if anyone wants to see it. Perhaps I should charge admission.

Russ said...

That bike absolutely deserved to get made fun of. It's not your fault that the same guy had another bike ridiculed before (carbon grip? seriously?). Maybe he should take a look in the mirror.

If you build a bike that screams "LOOK AT ME, I'M SO COOL!" you have to take the bad (RTMS making fun of you on the interweb) with the good (skinny guys with bandanas kowtowing and offering to buy you PBRs). If that's not to your liking, sell all the fancy bikes and buy a Fuji Track.

AnnaZed said...

Well, when normal (as in performance enhancing tools free) people delete their posts there is a little grey "post deleted by author" ghost left behind. The way you did it just makes me seem sort of crazy - not that there's anything wrong with that or entirely inacurate for that matter.

BikeSnobNYC said...

AnnaZed,

Sorry, didn't want you to question your sanity! Since it was just a duplicate post I considered it "site maintenance" and not cheating.
I didn't even stop to consider the possible repercussions.

Can I use the Boonen "my drink was spiked" excuse?

--BSNYC

Polygraf said...

My neighbor has got an ugly fj toyota tonka truck looking thing-he parks on the street(no driveway) and i don't think he ever leaves brooklyn.
I've encountered a rider in prospect park a few times who rides an amazing Ellsworth truth- he only rides in the park!
These idiots have more money than sense at least the BMC gets ridden and posed.

Scott said...

I'm as confused as you, RTMS. If the guy thinks the bike is ironic, isn't that admitting that it's stupid to ride it to the coffee shop?

What is it with hipsters and their irony? Can't they just do what they want and not try to explain it away with irony? It's much harder to make fun of sincerity.

wool chamois said...

I think the sense-o-meter and money-o-meter are not distinct entities at all, as the Snob represents them, but different aspects of a single, multi-faceted whole, like a hologram, or a patch of delivery van oil that changes colors in the Harlem sunlight, just before you hit it with your front tire while throwing your bike to win a criterium. For instance, if you buy a very expensive track frame, but use a credit card to do it, thereby going into debt, you have less than no money, but an proportionately negative amount of sense. In this instance, while costing a good deal of money, our hypothetical track frame is actually perfectly matched to the sense of it's owner. This is difficult to illustrate graphically, unless it's charted in "ironical dollars," which of course is the standard unit of measurement of the home mortgage industry. The point is: phenomena don't reduce neatly to a simple graphic.*

*Unless, of course, you happen for work for the Federal Government.

Anonymous said...

http://fixedfortworth.blogspot.com/2008/06/spread-word.html

wow

Stevious said...

I'm struggling to find the words for that video.

Do people like that really exist?

Human Powered said...

I'm doubting the ironic coffee bike statement. If he ever intended to put together a purpose built track bike he would have put some decent wheels, tires and pedals on the thing (when set up for track as posted on his blog). Of course these are not remotely feasible for a coffee bike so I am left to believe "ironic coffee bike" was the primary motivation therefore rendering it indulgent rather than ironic. "Me thinks he doth protest too much."

Your sarcasm radar isn't broken, your BS radar works fine too.

AH said...

wool chamois--
Yer makin' my head hurt with all that high-falutin' logic -- cut it out!

kurtdriver said...

Isn't everything ironic these days? I'm with you on this one snob, I went to watch a race here in Vancouver recently and the best bikes amongst the fans were the old steel bikes, not the Litespeed or the carbon bikes I saw being paraded about. Race bikes are for racing. O yeah, and what's the difference between that guy and the posers who made a film about themselves? Please people, some humility, or at least subtlety! Sign me"old crank".

bike shyster said...

sadness in the form of drivel

veloben said...

BSNYC/RTMS/etc.

Geez, not only a very interesting and good fucking writer, but fundamentally a pretty decent human being.

It's rare person who can distinguish and separate their disdain for a group from the need to be sensitive to offense caused to an individual. Nice.

lashon ha-ra

areUpake? said...

bike shyster... you have already been told. GO AWAY!

AnnaZed said...

My only beef with the Sensometer is that the "sense" bike pictured (which is sort of like this one -though with its horizontal top tube its probably a picture of a real Dutch bike of some sort):

http://www.electrabike.com/amsterdam/

would be really hard to carry up and down tenement stairs or to fit into your apartment if you have an elevator. So, you would have to have a big loft or an apartment building with guards for the parking structure to sensibly own it in NYC.

I think that skews the results, but not by much.

datamonkey said...

Dear Snob:
as a data/stats person I must say that your presentation of the sense/money meter demonstrated an almost Vulcanistic application of logic, and also sweet fucking graph. If you ever need work, give me a call.

AH said...

That video got me thinking about irony:

That the DFW Metroplex can probably get more high-end "track" bikes at that silly photoshoot than at a Friday night of racing in the Superdrome.

Anonymous said...

Being featured on the bikesnob website is an honor, no matter what derision is received. Dont let these naysayers spoil our fun, bike snob! Keep making me laugh at other peoples expense till the icecaps melt and I'll be a happy man.

datamonkey said...

One question. I am from Wyoming: what the hell is a coffee bike?

Anonymous said...

Bike Shyster --

Get lost!

AnnaZed said...

Bike shyster, or whatever you are calling yourself for this particular post, please buzz off. You are boring everyone.

Anonymous said...

Uh Oh...

http://toronto.en.craigslist.ca/tor/bik/
723091520.html

East Side said...

so, the photo-shoot video has me confused...was that "hot bikes with douchebags" ?

JIM N said...

There is nothing ironic about "Rain City Fix". Especially not the amount of effort that goes into customizing their looks and their bikes, so that they can all look pretty much exactly the same. There's also nothing ironic about spending a lot of money cultivating a grungy aesthetic, and then putting out a coffee table book of photos of yourself and your friends. It is only a shame that earlier youth movements weren't so efficient at self documentation and the manufacture of souvenirs.

JIM N said...

AnnaZed @ 2:41

Couldn't you lock it outside?

Anonymous said...

That video makes me want to ride a razr scooter and have my tattoos removed.

g said...

"hot bikes with douchebags"
Classic!

Jim said...

Not sure you really needed to explain yourself, BikeSnob. You should be pleased to have been caught applying a fairly consistent aesthetic, one that can be relied on to catch repeat offenders even when they disguise their bikes by replacing the frames, wheels, bars, cranks, and saddle.

So even if it's true that you suck, as some commenters allege, at least you do so with a great degree of consistency, and consistency is a form of excellence in its own right.

And that is ironic enough that you could ride it to the local coffee shop, if only your alleged consistent suckage came with powder coated deep vee wheels and short bars.

areUpake? said...

Jim N, lock a bike up outside overnight in any major city? Here in Portland we even have our ghost bikes stolen.

Opinionated Cyclist said...

Bike Shyster, how would you like it if I came over and spammed up your blog with links to my sick nonsense?

Really? You would?

I'll be right over!

Anonymous said...

no progress on tall bike video coverage at the tour... no official recognition of (genuflect) goose cheese... increasingly jumpier and sporadic sprints for the finish... good fucking... fucking good... hostile douches... douch hostility... snob cuddling up to the man... i gotta go home and listen to some burt bacharach. "what the, world, needs now,

Anonymous said...

Shyster,

The Snob doesn't come to where you blog and slap the dick out of your mouth.

bikesgonewild said...

...interesting, woolchamois...i would surmise that if we accept that bsnyc/rtms's 'sense-o-meter' or 'ironigraph' as i call it, could be modified to go up to eleven (11), then perhaps in theory, it should be able to handle "less than zero" equations...the question then becomes "is it better to calibrate it on the 'melodic costello scale' or 'literar-ily sequential easton ellis' gravimeter...

...hey, pundits will ponder...

...& sorry about the wannbe into the barrier earlier...micheal ball was screaming "chop 'im. chop 'im" into my earpiece...later i bought the kid a coffee & gave him a "rock racing" t-shirt...
...i'm not normally like that...someone put 'angustora' into my tea this morning...

Anonymous said...

is, love, sweet love

veloben said...

Jim n,
It is only a shame that earlier youth movements weren't so efficient at self documentation and the manufacture of souvenirs.

Oh I don't know. The HJ did a pretty good job of that. Back in the day.

Matt said...

I believe the Sense bike is a Pashley Roadster in the 24.5" size "for the taller gent". It has 28" wheels, comes in either 3- or 5-speed and runs about $1,500 in the U.S., which is actually pretty cheap per pound. It would be tough to lug up and down the stairs, though a set of carbon drops would bring the weight down a bit and be ironic, too.

ice cube said...

u-locks in back pockets are so hot right now! But carrying a patch kit is not.

Pack Phil said...

Can someone pleeeeease get a pic of that BMC strapped to the back of a Benz or Escalade???

Ka_Jun said...

"This person is exhibiting an inverse relationship between bike cost and practicality for the occasion,"

Holy shit, those graphs...

ice cube said...

BSNYC,

I am surprised you didn't mention an awesome one in the FGG today. Ariana Lara Franco's submission is that of all the cliches in fixiedome. I wont go any further but I really think you need to see it.

Anonymous said...

You're totally right to criticize this yahoo...his "track mode" setup on the bike has ATAC pedals - how legit can his "track" riding be?

JIM N said...

@rupake:
I lock my bike every day, but I am a professional bicycle security consultant.

@veloben:
harsh.

Anonymous said...

I hate bike culture wannabees! They are the trailor trash of bicyclist

erik k said...

when in doubt make more diagrams

Ski Bike Junkie said...

The graphic depiction of more money than sense was more logical than any executive presentation I have seen at any of the 5 fortune 500 companies I've worked for. Forget writing--I think you should become a CEO.

ice cube said...

ERIK K,

That is simply beautiful! hahahaha

BikeSnobNYC said...

Erik K rules.

--RTMS

Anonymous said...

and what is up with the queer boy take it up the #%* pants these bike culture wankers prefer to wear??? and how about that dofuss wearing womens shoes!!! I hate these fixters even more...

jc said...

lool at the more money sense comparison.. classic...

erik k said...

snob im flattered

Anonymous said...

I have a pie plate on my unicycle, is that ironic?

leroy said...

Honestly, I just don't see what all the fuss is about.

I have always wanted to have more money than sense.

And considering how little sense I have, it's surprising I still haven't realized this goal.

Anonymous said...

I have a pie plate signed by Floyd Landis, top that!

yonk said...

"...baffled by the 'bike culture's' compulsion to preen and model and to photograph itself and its fashions..."

Yes! Thank you for saying it. Why the need to model & document everything? (as if the "style" does not already scream look at me).

Let’s be transgressive & sub-cultural: O.K. it’s time for a photo shoot, coffee table book, & boutique retail store!

That and the penchant for riding indoors. I just don't get it.

Anonymous said...

snobster -- I bet you meant "derisive"

ryan said...

The trailer for the book makes me feel sad.

areUpake? said...

wait A pie plate on a unicycle? how is that even possible, and if it is which is the drive train side?!?. I need proof cause I call bs

bikeslob 80220 said...

There must be a simple regression equation we can use to determine if a bike makes sense within the scope of its observed application. Some possible coefficients and constants could be # of spoke cards, # of brakes, vertical distance between saddle and bars, gross weight vs. weight of lock, % NJS compliant, etc.
Then there are "special" situations such as bikes with TTMBL's. These are outliers and should be thrown out of the data set.

ice cube said...

Rain City Fix.
Okay now I get it...This must be where slc stole their "bike culture" from. Secondly is this an elaborate joke by you BSNYC? I kinda hope it is.

C.P. said...

Thank GAWD/RTMS I'm in derision heaven!

"...thereby emulate some of the more disappointing aspects of the larger culture"

Amen.

And hallelujah, for the LaShon Ha Ra, Irony...etc.

Ahhhh and how can I forget the cute little man-princesses in designer sleeves taking pics of themselves so they can look at themselves even more

I'm in heaven. Only one thing to ask.

If BG Dubs could just put Shyster into the barriers one more time. I'm thinking its the perfect day.

I do have to confess. I Heart BMC in non-irony mode. If only someone could start a bike-rescue project...for the fashionably abused..if only =)

Cameron said...

Those Rain City guys have already sold out and are now planning a fixed gear exclusive racing team. Plans are already in place to race in next years RAAM.

Official Spy Shot

bikesgonewild said...

...leroy...go to the top step of the podium...

...erik k, please join him on the second step...although it was a close finish, leroy threw his bike, didn't crash & hung on for the win...

...& this judges' ruling was based not on the foto finish but the personal relevancy of leroy's comments...

bikesgonewild said...

...cp...if i hip-checked shyster into the barriers, there'd be no apology, no coffee & no rr t-shirt...

...i might even lean in & quietly say "ta, ta, bitch" before i did it...& i think i could still retain at least ok guy if not reasonably good guy status...

mr.complaint said...

Irony is that all the individuals in the video remind me of English dubed Japanese cartoon characters.

And the only bicycle being used is one being used as a pogo stick.

Anonymous said...

Well I am English and unicycles come fitted with pie plates by law. How else do you stop the derailleur from going onto the spokes?

AnnaZed said...

JIM N said..."Couldn't you lock it outside?"

Well yes Jim, you could, but it would really fuck with the Sensometer and you would be lucky to come outside and find your chain guard waiting for you in disconsolate loneliness for you when you came back outside (the rest of the bike having been vandalized and/or stolen). This is New York we are talking about, dude.

ice cube said...

CP

"Designer Sleeves". I love it!!

areUpake? said...

anon 4:45 so you are saying that europeans have geared unicycles with derailers?... hmmm now I don't ride a unicycle but ... how? so are they free wheeling as well? cause that would be pretty interesting

AnnaZed said...

Oh and icecube, the really frightening part of Ariana Franco's FGG post is this:

"I'm currently in Sarasota, FL about to get another one way ticket with my bike, I'm just not sure where...."

Three guesses where she ends up. (winner gets a warm PBR).

ice cube said...

BSNYC,

I caught word that now along with fixed gear riding, The Boss is now in(again) and tattoos of and or pretaining to him are in high demand around Brooklyn. Just a little FYI. So that means I'll start seeing them here as soon as the Portland/Seattle scene deems him cool too.

opinionated unicyclist said...

There is a rerailer on each side, so you can be in two different gears at once, and have two pie plates. They just have never caught on in the US.

areUpake? said...

opinionated cyclist, apparently I am slow cause I still don't understand how its all put together? do you have any pictures of such a contraption?

Bikeslob 80220 said...

Manprincess?

I like it. "Douchebag" is so over-used these days.

Rerailers rule (ou) said...

Wish I did. I'd put 'em on Youtube.

ice cube said...

annazed,

I'd bet Sea-town again but I'd put the big bucks on NYC. I think she's ready now given that she has the FGG street cred and a messenger bag! I mean she was pictured next to it at least. Are those tattoos or really gnarly road rash scars?

Aaron Edge said...

— I put together this book for a few reasons:

1. Bikes are fun, all of them.
2. How and where we ride them is fun, inside or outside.
3. Switching up styles/parts/colors/sizes, fun also.
4. The folks in the photos were fun to work with.
5. Having a project with your best friend, who takes great pics, is fun.
6. Seeing people stoked on the finished project is fun.

Thank you BSNYC for the mention of this thing and also to all your readers for their comments... also quite fun.

And, the "Official Spy Shot" is awesome, well played!

Anonymous said...

Are you funnin' us?

Anonymous said...

blue sky thinking....

edge - 'lets monetise this sheeeet'
tosser in hat- 'koooooool'
chick -'where's the chamois creme?'

AnnaZed said...

Oh no icecube, the smart money is on Brooktown USA, the epicenter of all that she aspires to.

In any case it will be someplace else soon given that even she has to be self-aware enough to realize that in Sarasota the only thing that her current carefully crafted look signals is "white trash with tramp-stamps curiously affixed to calves."

tex said...

In any case it will be someplace else soon given that even she has to be self-aware enough to realize that in Sarasota the only thing that her current carefully crafted look signals is "white trash with tramp-stamps curiously affixed to calves."

How, er, ironic.

Alanis Morissette said...

Isn't it ironic, Don't you think?
And yeah, I really DO think.

Anonymous said...

Ooh Mr Areyoupake never call an Englishman a european. Geared unicycles are the way forward don'tcha know. Didn't us limeys invent irony? And black pudding, though I think you call it blood sausage, it sounds horrible either way, now Marmite is another thing altogether and a by product of beer what more could you ask for? Except maybe duel pie plates?

Anonymous said...

Aaron --

Thanks for being a good sport.

Anonymous said...

rain city fixed - wow, looks like seattle has surpassed williamsburg in number of fixster piles.
glad i moved out of the city 5 years ago, this shit is depressing.

AnnaZed said...

Good sport! Aaron must think that he has died and gone to fixed gear heaven. He's been made sport of by the one and only RTMS/BSNYC. His place in the hipster firmament is secure - forever.

OM Flyer said...

A coffee-table book about coffee bikes. Wasn't this on Seinfeld about 15 years ago?

Faceplant said...

Areyoupake? The gears and freewheel aren't half the fun. It's the brake that really makes things interesting

Anonymous said...

bikesnob,

i haven't read through all these comments so i don't know if anyone has pointed it out yet, but the bmc track machine has relaxed geometry, quite possibly making it better for the street than for the track. this could be one of the reasons the rider chose to ride it on the street over more aggressive track frames.

C.P. said...

@bgw least ok guy if not reasonably good guy status...

At least, at the very fuggin least. I'll raise m'cup of drivel to that, and make sure to aim for the fallen rider from behind.

@I-Cube. Dig the Brief Hist. o' Time in the Profile. Elegant U? also?

@BSlob,

Thankfully I woke up in a dumpster one day, as luck would have it with RTMS on my PDA Screen and have kept my inner manprincess remission ever since.

ice cube said...

ANNAZED,

Good call on Brooktown. I was about 95% on that. The look is just fantastic, really though it is. How long will it be before TRL or Bravo start pulling messengers/fakengers over just to see who they're wearing/riding. The bandana is a bit of a mystery to me. Does it go up over the face like at a hardcore show or does it sop up that sweat from the gruling ride to the coffee shop?

Andrew said...

aren't we all missing something?...

isn't the coffee table book the peak of a fad? aren;t we turning a corner?

repent! the apocalypse is near...

i predict pistadexes to drop within two months of publication

Andrew said...

also when did i go from daddo to andrew?

ice cube said...

Word that CP!

Anonymous said...

that BMC wanker deserves all the ridiculous derision in the world. Who are his parents? Anyone raising a son/daughter like this ridiculous freak should be banished like leppers were banished from society

Anonymous said...

Gonflé,

You need a reality check.

Anonymous said...

I know its hip for the bike culture freaks to emulate gay culture and thats all fine and good if that is what your into. The problem I see is people who aren't into same sex marriage being catagorized with those who are just because they are ignorant. Back in the day we rode BMX bicycles all over town wearing levi pants with a strap or strong rubber band to keep the chain from eating the pant leg.

frilly said...

'You got a hard-on for this guy or what?'

Snobby, thank you for addressing that one tout de suite cheri. Whew.

Jonathan said...

daddo/andrew: are you this guy?

http://andrewdaddo.com.au/

wool chamois said...

"The problem I see is people who aren't into same sex marriage being catagorized with those who are just because they are ignorant. Back in the day we rode BMX bicycles all over town wearing levi pants with a strap or strong rubber band to keep the chain from eating the pant leg."

Phew, when I read that quickly, I thought you were riding around with a strap on and a rubber. Of course, as the Boy Scout motto says ...

frilly said...

A strap on AND a rubber? Wouldn't that be negative points on the Sense-o-meter?

wool chamois said...

"A strap on AND a rubber? Wouldn't that be negative points on the Sense-o-meter?"

One man's door is another man's ... oh, never mind.

Anonymous said...

hahahahaha!!!!....hahaha!!!..Oh man! now I don't know how one can think about bicycles and lesbian sex..hahaha!!! right on!!@!!

Anonymous said...

If anyone is wondering...I work at a bike shop and it is kind of slow today so this is helping to pass the time

Anonymous said...

I will give you a dollar and a blow job if you EVER spot one of these Seattle hipster kids further than 2 miles from: Cal Anderson Park, the Cha Cha or the Redwood.

These are not bikes. They are fashion accessories they tote from the park to the bar to the park to the bar.

-Seattle douchebag

wool chamois said...

"These are not bikes. They are fashion accessories they tote from the park to the bar to the park to the bar."

Kind of "pret-a-porter" meets "porta-potty".

Andy Pandy said...

Wasn’t Glibly a dwarf in Lord of the Rings… just suggestin. And if you would want to push the green line of sensibility a little further, then riding shoes. One end Il Grillo’s gold and rainbow Sidi version, at the other extreme a pair of Exustars from Nash Bar. In reflection a little less snarky perhaps and give him props for at least being consistent.

But at the end of the day.... what kinda crowd would you expect to draw when Mr Balls is in the court, like bees to a honey pot

Aaron Edge said...

"I will give you a dollar and a blow job if you EVER spot one of these Seattle hipster kids further than 2 miles from: Cal Anderson Park, the Cha Cha or the Redwood."

— I hopped on my fixed pista for a 28 mile ride on Sunday, from Capitol hill (Cal Anderson park) to/around West Seattle and back. I'll take yer buck, you can keep the service. :)

Andrew said...

thats not me - but how weird is taht/

Anonymous said...

That is Seattle. The place where the video was shot is a living space that operates as an underground club/studio/etc... If you live in Seattle it should not be hard to guess the neighborhood.

When I was there (playing a show) there were actually "no bikes" signs posted inside - as in more than one sign. Maybe it's to keep the riffraff out?

Anonymous said...

You congratulated this guy on finishing the book???? He should be punched in the face for for making this book! The guy in the blue hat with the neck tattoos made me want to start a web site 'hot bikes with douche bags'!

Anonymous said...

Those leppers are rediculous.

Jonathan said...

the daddos are like the australian wayans brothers, or the baldwins, or something. im not sure if theyre into bikes.

Anonymous said...

I hope this BMC riding fixter wannabee part of bike culture toad has a strong constitution and knows that our deriding comments are intended to help him see the error of his ways...I don't want him to hang himself or do anything crazy

opinionated unicyclist said...

Aaron,

Huh! That ain't nothin'! I hopped on my unicycle today and rode 42 miles uphill and into the wind, even though my left derailer was acting up and I couldn't get out of low gear!

Anonymous said...

Scroll down for the Steam Punk Recumbent

Grump said...

Dear Mr Snob
You are too kind with your comments. If I had the talent to do a blog, like you do, I would have included the phrase "shit for brains". I have nothing against people with more money than sense, but I reserve the right to laugh at them.

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget a steampunk bicycle

For me the holy grail will be a steam punk FG

Judi said...

Me and Dominic say fixed gear bike culture has jumped the shark. The guy in the blue hat, in that video, was a tool. The book looks lame lame lame.

Maulie said...

Snob,

If the person in question paid that much for the bike, wouldnt he now have less money than sense?

If he started with money and no sense, then spent the money. He would have neither money nor sense.

Does that make sense?

-Maulie

Anonymous said...

BARF!

MG said...

Hysterical post, BSNYC. I only wish you could have guest lectured for my policy analysis course. Your Money- and Sense-o-meters are brilliant!

xXridebigmacXx said...

Rain City Fix....this thing is just begging for a Christopher Guest style parody on YouTube

AMRcyclist said...

Last!

BSNYC,
Your Money X Sense write up is extremelly good. Mr BMC guy, and friends, should feel honoured to get such a mention.

Cheers!

Emily said...

Hey, nice to see you've gotten the hang of Adobe illustrator. But don't get all Perez on us now.

Johnny Sprocket said...

The Australian Daddo brothers are like the Baldwins, except with 3 Stephens! How's that for torture?!

ken (the evil) said...

great post again snob. thanks everybody. not you buddy, 5 seconds of your video clip was 4.5 seconds too many...

Ronsonic said...

Offended BMC boy should take pride in having bikes so exceptional that they keep getting noticed. He's gotten the attention those bikes were meant to attract.

Whether that's good or not depends on your interpretation of post-deconstructionist ironicism.

Anonymous said...

Boy this is everything soul less about these little fixed gear non conformist conformist little sheep i loathe with a vomit passion.Those tats,"those crazy bikes", Wow man? Thats not cultural, thats fashion, sheep,monkey see monkey do,dog crap commodity bike riding.The hippies had more of a community than any unique NYC bike "culture" thats just a carbon copy of pseudo punks.What does this bike culture with pretty clothes create??Videos?

simonlamb said...

im having a really rubbish day but that post has really cheered me up thanks a million.

Frederick said...

Ayeeee my eyes! That video was the worst. They do know that 'dork chic' is an oxymoron, don't they?!

SD said...

1. My Little Ponies are fun, all of them.
2. How and where we play with them is fun, inside or outside.
3. Switching up styles/parts/colors/sizes, fun also.
4. The folks in the photos were fun to work with.
5. Having a project with your best friend, who takes great pics, is fun.
6. Seeing people stoked on the finished project is fun.

bryan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I was a bike messenger in Seattle for a year and a half up until fairly recently. Did I recognize a single person from that "rain city fix" garbage? No. What does that mean? It means that not one of the people in that video has any affiliation with the culture that they stole the entirety of their identities from. Wishing them the worst.

Anonymous said...

was there any bicycle riding in that videoclip, or did i miss it? was it in between the barspins? irony

christopher cummings said...

when will these douchebags realize that if you want to do something for the sport, put down the pabst or reingold and get on the track.

Anonymous said...

anon 6:09-that guy w/the bmc wasn't riding his bike on the streets, he was walking it. so wtf does geometry have to do dw/it? geometry questions aside, he is a tool for putting those short bars on that thing. aaron edge-what exactly do you do for a living? other than tool-worship and shit-talk? please put the bikes down guys, and go back to yer tattoos and cheap beer and melonchaly longings to get laid by the girl w/the really cool tattoo and ill-fitting clothes. what a freakin geek.

Johnny Belteshazzar said...

Christopher Cummings said...
when will these douchebags realize that if you want to do something for the sport, put down the pabst or reingold and get on the track.


Ahhh I wish it were so! but that would mean not one would be doing anything for the "Kulture"!

Oh snap...yeeeeah....that's the whole point Muahahahahaahah HA!

ChrisB. said...

Going forward, you might want to address bike's owner as "uber producer, songwriter, Lakeside Lounge owner and Steve Earle guitarist" . . .

He's a real (credible and successful) artist, and long time cyclist. No poseur here.

In short, this guys got so much street cred, that even a record setting number of comments will hardly make a dent.

And while I'm a thrifty guy myself, two guitars, two bikes (neither of which is worth more than $500), I'll admit that if I'd actually made money in the music biz, I too might find myself riding something just as senseless as this man.

ChrisB. said...

. . . and yes I do feel totally lame for defending someone here in the comments section.

Anonymous said...

The real poser of the group was that dude with drop bars. What kind of rider are you if you cant do bar spins?

K-Ro said...

While I'm all for everyone doing their own unique bike thing, and also very much appreciative of Snob's ruminations on the intersections of all these various aspects of bike culture - that video really made my skin crawl.

Kevin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Commiecanuk said...

More money than sense...those graphs were too much like school, and thus you lost me.

Men with bikes are like chicks with shoes. Yes, I ride a $400 Dahon bike every day to work, this is my Payless "sensible shoe". Cheap, comfy, water proof, and don't care too much if I step in dog or alpaca shit.

But, for a day on the town and getting laid, it's the $5000 Cervelo R3 with Record, or the Jimmy Choo of bikes. Flashy, sexy, uncomfortable, fragile, and I don't dare run over gum.

Coincidently, Jimmy Choos, Payless, Dahon and Cervelo are all made by the same 8 year old Tai girls.

techb3 said...

touching.

Anonymous said...

"Rain City Fixed" -Isn't that the name of a Queensryche song or something?

Daniel! said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Daniel! said...

If anyone is wondering...I work at a bike shop and it is kind of slow today so this is helping to pass the time

Oh! Wow, I know I was wondering! I was, like, "who is that anonymous commentor? What does he do to pass the time when it's slow at work?" And now I know!

I hopped on my fixed pista for a 28 mile ride on Sunday, from Capitol hill (Cal Anderson park) to/around West Seattle and back.

28 miles!!! On a fixed pista?!

Anonymous said...

yo track-bike girl

C.P. said...

@Chrisb

I'm wondering tho, did RTMS bag on the rider? Apparantly not. He's bagging on the choices being made.

There's a larger context here. One that I've yet to find the language to describe adequately.

For me the SNOB brings the super-affluent post modern west to a cultural "fault-line"

An abyss. There are people that ride bikes because they have to. Humans that make certain riding choices out of years of trying to figure out what is valid, long term over time. Valid being practical, or usefull, or a wise choice given the activity...well suited for said activity.

What is the primary activity of the FG world? riding?.....

No fashion.

What's the primary activity of the Bimmer driver, the Hummer driver..

Track driving? Off road Driving?

No, it's Fashion, Gratification of one's personal whim, one's personal fiat.

It seems that many of the FG choices being made seem to be made out of one criterion; fashion.

Much like Kevin alludes to.

Again, while I've not come to any conclusion on the matter it currently seems to me that the larger context for SNOB's critique is a Kulture where one may make a "choice" albeit a "consumer" choice void of any purpose other than to suit one's personal whim or fiat.

Does humankind aspire to dropping thousands of dollars on Hi-perf Vehicles solely to satiate one's whim or fiat?

For reasons I'm not able to fully describe that this moment....The SNOB is well righted in making fun of individuals making those kinds of choices.

Granted I'm as much as anyone all about having my personal fiats satiated.

However for me SNOB is pointing out that there is a larger context to life, humankind and the choices being made.

That which is, IS whether one percieves it or not. Perhaps it's the unspoken larger context that SNOB alludes to....that there is a greater context for riding and the choices one makes about riding....

One that isn't soley based on personal whim or fiat, but well...

again the words escape me but I hope that the BMC rider, The Rain City Folks, Bimmer drivers all have a great day in spite of it all. and Hopefully they along with myself and humankind will attempt to aspire to and make stronger choices in a far greater context than in the vapid satiation of one's personal whim.

bikeslob 80220 said...

**"Rain City Fixed" -Isn't that the name of a Queensryche song or something?**

I was thinking more along the lines of Saigon Kick or Britney Fox

Anonymous said...

c.p.,

Start a blog.

SD said...

cp-
Nice manifesto. Can you post a warning here before you bomb something, so we can get out of the way?

ChrisB. said...

CP,

I totally agree.

My response was really directed at the, "wanker," "fixster wanabee" crowd not the uber blogger BSN himself.

I guess I'm believer in the "it's not what you have, but what you do with it" and "it's not what you do, but how you do it."

My art-school grad wife and I have this sort of discourse all the time.

-Men who own large pickup trucks for no practical reason. If you install car steroes at Best Buy, what do you need the F250 for?
-Women who for some reason find value in the fact that their boyfriend/husband was at some point in a band. Was the band good? Did they make great music?

15 years of playing in rock bands has given me a greater perspective on my younger years hanging out in the bike racing crowd. As a younger person I was put off by all the posing, posturing, and big spending. But if there's one thing I've since learned, it's that these people exist everywhere you go. People who are more invested in the idea of the thing, more than the thing itself.

Somewhere there's a literary crit paper on the relationship between the work of late poet Wallace Stevens and the writer of this blog.

Anonymous said...

c.p.,

Again, start a blog.

c.p. said...

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,
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blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

prolly said...

As for c.p. ...

"blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
for whatever thats worth."

chrisb. said...

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

Anonymous said...

JAA Freilich Alter!!!!
The Deutsch man in the film didn't say anything about ti being fun an ,,cool"! he said yuppie fixed riders suck and need to go back to Wurstland!!
girl did a bad translation!!

Anonymous said...

c.p.+chrisb.=

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,
blah,blah,
blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,blah,

ChrisB. said...

Anonymous,

You're a "fixed gear wannabee," "wanker," bastard.

But you're right.

Anonymous said...

you people need to quit reading blogs and jump back on your $3k track bikes that mummy and daddy's credit card bought.

Anonymous said...

I started watching that horror flick with the sound off. It looked like they were going into a crack den. When they reached the bottom of the stairs I was right.
I turned it off right there.
there is no way that dude was on his way to the velodrome with the gearing he had on that BMC, unless of course he races juniors and is gear retricted.

Anonymous said...

Since "bike culture" consists of a lot of people into color coordination (deep Vs matching Oury grips matching top tube pads matching bandannas, all blending into a transgressive shade of conformity), I think someone should come out with a Garanimals-inspired fashion line of mix-and-match clothing for these tattooed simpletons. To match their fierce preening, the line can be called Grrranimals.

Anonymous said...

Riding a track bike to a velodrome is like wearing a mask and snorkel en route to the beach.

Stephen O'Malley said...

"Rain City Fix": from the same genius who brought us the "Genuine" LP, at least 5 poseur doom metal bands, and fucking HIMSA. Bring me the head of Aaron Edge!

Aaron Edge said...

"Bring me the head of Aaron Edge!"

— Though I'm quite sure it's not the real Stephen O'Malley posting... at least someone is taking time out of their busy day, reading up on my previous band history. I'm flattered, thank you for your time!

ant1 said...

just a few more and we'll have 200 comments

ant1 said...

So close....

ant1 said...

just one more...

ant1 said...

Let me be the first to congratulate myself for being the first to congratule BSNYC for posting an entry that got 200 comments.

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