When we last saw the Lone Wolf, observant readers noticed that the shadow cast by his bicycle had a blue tint to it. I was not sure why this was--until I received this photo from a reader:
I was incredibly grateful to finally have a closer look at the Lone Wolf's setup. Note the forward-angled tri post which serves to not only compensate for what must be an extremely relaxed geometry, but also provides the trunk for what is essentially a "water tree." He's also kept the chainguard on, taking advantage of both its protective and aero properties by integrating it with the translucent blue fairing. Dual wheel covers and a frontal fairing also see to it that this bike cheats the wind like Bernie Madoff. Time trial bikes are sometimes referred to as "slippery," and this baby is more slippery than a wet ham.
Even without his "A" bike, the Lone Wolf's visage exudes confidence, and as much respect I have for his arch-nemesis Bart Kaufman I'm afraid Kaufman may be less a wolf than a jackalope in comparison:
Not only is the jackalope simultaneously proud and absurd, but antlers on a rabbit is not dissimilar to a rack on a Madone.
Speaking of rotund, hibernating animals (everybody knows jackalopes hibernate), now that spring is here those cyclists who go "underground" during the winter months are beginning to re-emerge tentatively into the wild. While I personally welcome these shaky, bewildered riders back into the fold, at least one woman is less than impressed:
To all the male cyclist... - w4m
Reply to: [deleted]
Date: 2009-03-19, 7:40AM EDT
that stuck it out through a cold nyc winter and didn't hang their bike up for 5 months, your looking good out there. I enjoy watching you race by now that the weather is getting warm and the layers are coming off.
To all the grotesque men that i passed going up the bridge yesterday morning that ate like f'n pig's all winter, and ordered delivery every night, played guitar hero that were out riding yesterday trying to make it up the bridge with a doughnut and a heavy krypto chain on it's last link around their waist on a fixed gear. You're gut is not sexy. You're growing a second chin. You're a part timer. Cover up please, and get out of my way when i'm coming over the bridge.... thank you.
As if trendy urban cyclists didn't have enough to worry about when it comes to peer acceptance of their wardrobes, it turns out women are actually counting how many links they've got left when they wrap their Kryptonite chains around their waists. For this reason, I think Kryptonite should offer their popular New York chain locks in custom lengths so that those of excessive girth can still show a little chain slack. This would have a slimming effect and might in turn earn them a little bit of slack from judgmental ladies like this one.
In the meantime, though, clearly if you need to use the last link of your chain when you wrap it around your waist you should instead put it in your bag. Actually, unless you're a messenger and you're locking and unlocking your bike every few minutes you should probably just keep your chain in your bag anyway. I'm not sure why riders buy such large messenger bags yet continue to keep their locks on their bodies. Most bags I see that are not worn by actual messengers are empty and flat and are so huge they look more like capes than bags.
I suspect it's only a matter of time before the chain-around-the-waist look becomes so popular that people just start wearing them even if they're not riding. This look works especially well paired with some u-locks hanging from your ear tunnels.
But with spring comes bike theft, and I was dismayed to read that at least one woman has been relieved of her tire:
to the douchebag that stole my back bike tire at the Marcy JMZ... - 25 (williamsburg)
Reply to: [deleted]
Date: 2009-03-18, 11:41PM EDT
To the person who stole (or perhaps, borrowed?) my back bike tire from the Marcy JMZ sometime between Tuesday and this evening...
We missed an amazing connection. I feel like my fist and your face would get along famously. I"m a pretty good looking girl. I mean, i have no noticeable scars, no missing limbs or disfigurements, and all of my teeth touch. Perhaps you would like to meet up some time for coffee, or maybe even a bike ride (i"m guessing it is safe to assume you like bikes?). Maybe even as soon as Friday? oh wait, thats no good for me, I really just see no way that a person of such low income could come up with the money to replace that tire on such short notice. It's a good thing that I don't need that bike to get to work or anything, cause then I'd really be fucked. Oh right, I DO. Seriously though, thanks for at least picking the beginning of spring to take that shitty burden of a back tire off my hands. It really was just another piece of dead-weight that i was sick of hauling around, and who really uses their bike in the summer anyway... I really can't wait to hear from you...I think we missed a very magical moment that we could have spent together, and I for one, would love another chance...
ol' one wheel.
I realize a lot of people say "tire" when what they really mean is "wheel," but if you think about it just stealing tires is pretty smart. Stealing a wheel from a bicycle can arouse suspicion and needs to be done quickly, but stealing the tires just makes it look like you're fixing a flat so you can take your time. I'm sure passing cyclists would even slow down and ask you if you needed any help. (I always ask cyclists with flats if they need help, but I actually accelerate when I pass because I don't want to hear the answer. I shudder to think of how many tire thefts in progress I might otherwise have thwarted.) Actually, the only reason you don't hear more about tire theft is that most people don't have the necessary dedication; instead, once they've got the wheel off they figure they might as well graduate to wheel theft so they just take off.
Of course, the rarest of all thefts is inner tube theft. The inner tube thief stealthily removes the wheel, removes the tire, takes the inner tube, replaces the tube with packing peanuts, re-mounts the tire, re-installs the wheel, and slips off into the night like a wet ham. Victims don't even know they've been hit until they try to ride off; even then, many don't realize it and just think the crunching noise is coming from their bottom brackets. Meanwhile, the inner tube thief deflates and flattens the tube, puts a little talc on it, re-packages it, and sells it on the notorious inner tube black market. A dedicated inner tube thief can make dozens of dollars in as little as a month.
This is why I rub tubular tires on all my commuter bikes. They're pinch-flat resistant and just plain pinch-resistant.