Monday, May 11, 2009

Indulgence: How Much is Too Much?

When it comes to professional cycling, there's only one thing more compelling than a Grand Tour, and that thing is a nice juicy (or powdery) drug scandal. So even though the Giro d'Italia is well under way (in Italy, I believe) all the attention is currently on Classics star Tom Boonen, who has once again tested positive for cocaine. However, the good news is that Boonen does not have a cocaine problem. Rather, he's got such a bad drinking problem that cocaine just seems to enter him by accident:


I do not think I have a problem with cocaine, I have problems when I drink too much. 364 days per year I am good. But if I drink too much, it's exactly like I change in my head...

I need help. Someone should teach me to understand what happens when I drink too much.


There's nothing funny about drug and alcohol abuse--except when it leads to lots of wacky hijinx and comic pratfalls, of course, in which case it's absolutely hysterical. As such, I found Boonen's cry for help quite moving, mostly because it was accompanied by a complete lack of slapstick. (If Boonen had, say, puked on Phil Liggett, jumped into a Lamborghini with Paola Pezzo and Mario Cipollini, and then crashed into that caveman-like statue of Eddy Merckx, I'd be less inclined to take it seriously.) So as cyclists, I believe we need to heed Boonen's plea and stage our own intervention. And since Boonen's problem seems to be that he doesn't understand what happens when he drinks too much, I've done my part by assembling some PSAs that are guaranteed to both teach him and scare him straight.

Here's a chilling film which, if I'm understanding it correctly, is a dramatization of what's happening inside your brain when you drink:



I think what this is saying is that when you drink you kill brain cells, and consequently your brain can no longer handle its workload. Personally, this was more than convincing enough for me, and immediately after watching it I poured every drop of liquor in my home into the toilet. However, a true problem drinker like Boonen probably needs more convincing, so in order to drive the point home I found another video:



Now that's what I call intense. It makes that last video look like an episode of the "Teletubbies." I had already poured my booze into the toilet, but this one actually drove me to flush the toilet. (If you came over to my place for cocktail hour yesterday evening, you might want to gargle some Listerine.) But you know how it is with celebrities. Once they're on that path of self-destruction it can be almost impossible to steer them off of it. I figured what Boonen needs is a video that speaks to him in a language he understands, and that language is of course cheesy Dutch R&B:



So please join me in raising an O'Doul's to Tom Boonen, and here's hoping he dries out soon. Incidentally, if Boonen is drinking so heavily that he's consuming cocaine without being aware of it, who knows what else is entering him unwittingly? After all, there are certain foreign bodies that don't show up in doping controls. I just hope nobody's been giving Boonen the "pinky test," if you know what I mean.

Speaking of strange bars and places to put your hands, a reader recently sent me some absolutely awe-inspiring cockpit shots:


This bicycle has more hand positions than someone reciting "Atlas Shrugged" in sign language, and it's proof once again that anything is possible with bar-ends. Really, the only way this rider could outdo himself would be to incorporate controls from other vehicles as well, such as a steering wheel, a joystick, and perhaps even a rudder. Here's a shot from another angle, which gives you a better sense of what it's like to be at the helm of this incredible craft:

I sincerely hope that Tom Boonen sees this bike one day, because it could certainly teach him a thing or two about being in control. I do find it odd though that, with all the attention to detail, the rider has omitted the padding on the forearm rests. Incidentally, I'm going to let you in on a little secret: while most riders use some kind of foam in this application, the hot new setup among the pros is silicone breast implants. Rumor has it that Lance Armstrong was the first person to use them for time-trialing, since he developed a taste for artificial breasts during his stint as a retired celebrity playboy and wanted to find a way to keep his hands on them when he got serious again and returned to the sport. Naturally, once the Patron started doing it the trend swept through the peloton and beyond, and now there's actually a brisk silicone breast implant trade on eBay. I've never used silicone breasts for time-trialing so I can't say whether or not they work, but I will say that if you're a recovering addict you should probably avoid them. I'm sure if Tom Boonen had a pair of fake breasts on his handlebars he'd be trying to do drugs off them before he got off the starting ramp.

As I said earlier, drug and alcohol abuse should not be taken lightly. Furthermore, as cyclists, we're more susceptible than most to excessive behavior. The same impulses that lead us to train obsessively, upgrade compulsively, and dress ridiculously can also manifest themselves in overly indulgent behavior off the bike. For example:

Solo wing-eater at Croxley Ales - w4m - 26 (East Village)
Reply to: [deleted]

Date: 2009-05-10, 10:18PM EDT


You were eating wings tonight by yourself, but you were sitting behind me, so I didn't get to look at you too much. I was with two of my girlfriends in the dark corner. I kept accidentally hitting you with my bike helmet, and for that I apologize :-) I so wanted to talk to you, but unlike all the other charming women in the city, I have no game :-) I think you're adorable and because you seem way too nice, you probably aren't at home reading craigslist missed connections. But on the off chance that you are, and you're single, and you'd like to be wacked in the side again with my bike helmet, shoot me an email and we can indulge in some greasy 50-cent bar wings together!


One day you're just taking an innocent ride, and the next thing you know you're on a booze-and-chicken-wing bender getting beaten with a cycling helmet. The fact is, more cyclists are injured in drunken cycling safety equipment bondage sessions than are saved by helmet use. Don't become another statistic--how many of us need to wake up beaten and surrounded by empty chicken buckets with our hands and feet u-locked to four poster beds before we change our Boonen-like ways? Yes, it's a slippery slope to self-destruction, and that's because it's coated with chicken grease.

Sadly, though, the perversity isn't going to end soon. This past Saturday, "Bicycle Fetish Day" took place in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and a reader snapped this shot of a reverse-drive tall bike:



Meanwhile, half a world away in Taiwan, somebody's rubbing a Chunk:


Still, there are some encouraging signs. This ride may have riser bars and no brakes, but the rear rack is a nod to the "new practicality," and it's also locked up very securely:


Not sure about that steep head tube angle and proprietary headset though.

77 comments:

mikeweb said...

Petacchi!

mikeweb said...

and Cavendish?

WheelDancer said...

Boonen = bozo

Anonymous said...

Whoot Who

Anonymous said...

yep

Bill said...

"one the Patron" - now that my proofreading gig is complete....

congrats mikeweb, you were beast today, as the kids say, i think.

Anonymous said...

Atas Shrugged?

Anonymous said...

BOO-YA!

Bill said...

damn, didn't even notice that, probably because I loved the image of somebody signing it too much

Luck E. Seven said...

Too much is never enough!


A

mikeweb said...

Thanks Bill - It was the hangin' out with Boonen this morning that put me over the top.

rezado said...

Sweet baby jesus

ant1 said...

ant1st!

Anonymous said...

Coulda podiumed if I didn't read it.

Bill said...

I especially love lance's quote "it's a blow for quickstep...a blow for boonen....a blow for cycling..." something like that.

Pontius Pilate said...

Top 20. Man, I need to give up the cigarettes.

Hail Caesar,

PP

red neckerson said...

withering

im withering

mikeweb said...

"Atas Shrugged"? - Snob, Ayn Rand will return from the grave and force you drink your own toilet cocktail using the sheer power of supernatural Objectivism.

CommieCanuck said...

oh yeah..my drinking led me to worse things. If this were a valid excuse, the number incidents of shotgun marriages, misspelled knuckle tattoos, and waking up with Kirstie Alley would be a fraction of what they are.

Boonen, proponent of the "Beer Goggles" defense.

Winning races led to his drinking, which led to his coke intake.

Problem solved.

mikeweb said...

At least that 6 point buck of a sirrus is sporting 'wheel brows'

Anonymous said...

Atas Shrugged ????

CommieCanuck said...

Term for Tom Boonen passing Taiwanese riders for the win: Blowing Chunks.


thank yew.

Strayhorn said...

Can't rap a man for doing things I've done myself. Although I have to admit that when I've had too many, no one's given me coke. Usually all they offer is marriage, Nigerian cash schemes, and hope & change I can believe in.

Bill said...

apparently gasquet was hanging out with him

Rantwick said...

"Atlas Shrugged" in sign language? I don't know what other people find funny, but man, you almost made me spit out my mouthful of coffee... well done, snob.

mercator said...

That's right sonny, 17 year old single malt tastes reeeally bad. Best leave it for us old geezers who don't know any better.

WheelDancer said...

Perhaps Bill is on the right track; someone offered Booned some blow and he had something else in mind when he said yes.

rezado said...

How do you get on the list for cocktail hour at snob's place?

Snob you should drink toilet booze more often if it is going to get you to post earlier.

Is sunday really the best day of the week to drink libations for the porcelain god?

RB1 said...

What really happens inside your brain http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXFiycUbG3I

brent said...

maybe doping is a thing of the past in the pro peloton. it seems that we are back to an age where true men are winning the races. men who aren't afraid to indulge in alcohol, cocaine, chicken wings and hookers.

ahhhh, i love cycling.

Mister Grammar said...

Here, let me do it:

Atas Shrugged?

Bristol Traffic said...

That headset on the toddlers bike is even wierder, because the black plastic on the front enables/disables steering. Push it down and the stem locks in position -the parent is then in charge. Flip it up and the kid has control.

Other Side of the GW said...

Near the end of the 2nd booze PBA the kid inserted the text, "Alcohol is Discusting. I think he tested some of his items before proofreading his vid. Or maybe he drano the Lysol toilet cleaner. His spelling is "discusting".

Other Side of the GW said...

Or drank, even. And I swear, I didn't drink any Drano.

Robert H said...

The front fender on the Chunk screams "practicality".

Daddo said...

ohhhh!!!!

atLas shrugged!

now i get it - that is funny!

Anonymous said...

KARA GOUCHER IS HOTT!!

streepo said...

Dagny Taggart is HOTT!!

I think she is Jolene's sister.

Disgruntl Ed. said...

Really, is there any reason why the word "madcap" did not appear in today's post?

ringcycles said...

Poor hipsters, here in BSNYC Land, every day is bicycle fetish day. They only get it once a year? I can hear Fausto saying now "the bicycle, she is a demanding mistress"

Anonymous said...

I think it was the 190 takes for his "I am Tom Boonen, and I am Specialized" commercial, that put him over the edge. Think about it.
Try repeating that in a serious tone of voice without being intoxicated. Who's got the blow?

Durga said...

Hey, that's my bike!

Durga

grog said...

ATLS SHRG
CHKN WING
FSHR PRCE

CommieCanuck said...

Bristol..if Tommeke had that headset, he wouldn't be in this mess.

Johnny Sprocket said...

Tom needs to quit cycling and take up guitar in a metal band. Then he can drink and do coke to his hearts content. He already has a 'metal mullet' anyway. Tom rocks!

Anonymous said...

Specialized QuickStep race bike = $9000.00
Energy expended winning paris-roubaix = unfathomable
Tommeke busted for 3rd coke offense = priceless

Mongo Pusher said...

Konovalovas! a.k.a. "Chunk Rubber"

Luck E. Seven said...

You had me at Paola Pezzo.


A

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Bristol!

I have a much better understanding of the true origins of the 'Fixed Gear Community'. The honor of the Velodrome is returned.

Thank you, Snobbie!

I never get tired of gratuitously greasy pics of Cippo..

Seanywonton said...

Speaking of typos, how about those ones at the end of the second video? I wouldn't want to drink that "Discusting" booze, & neither should you, "homes"!

That kid was pretty cool though. I give him 4 years before he's palping 40's of his favorite brand of malt liquor.

BikeLemming said...

Surely the lack of aerobar pads on the strangely cockpitted bike must mean something?

Anonymous said...

* * * NEWSFLASH * * *

Tyler Hamilton has been killed in a training accident in Colorado. His chimera Tileer Optimus Maximus Hamiliton apparently has survived the crash.

Tileer stated "Tyler was an immense pu$$y who did nothing but hold me back. I think he was attracted to Lance Armstrong in a very unhealthy unmanly sort of way if ya catch my drift. Good riddence.

Anyhow with that millstone around my neck Tyler no longer dragging me down I plan on racing and winning the TdF and Vuelta this year and next year all the spring classics as well.

I HAVE NEVER TESTED POSITIVE! Of course I've never been tested. Heh! The TdF isn't until July so I'm off to Hamsterdam or Holland whatever to help out Boonen with his cyclo-groupie auditions and tranendental vegetation sessions. Ta ta till the Tour volks.

Tileer O M Hamilton

Anonymous said...

can one ship 360cc breast implants "flat rate"?

Bill said...

curse of the old grey lady strikes again...

http://www.velonews.com/article/91901

Surly Bastard said...

Typos and spelling errors galore in the kid's anti-alcohol videos:

Discusting?

Maybe they'd been huffin' the cleaning products afterall ...

"More hand positions than signing Atlas Shrugged."

Fuckin' brilliant ...

55th!

red neckerson said...

i had to go to lexington cos of something i cot from jolene but im saving that story for a slo news day

mikeweb said...

I think all the typos on that kid's PSA viddy were intentional. At least I hope so...

Surly Bastard said...

Consider that the single malt that kid swiped from his dad's liquor cabinet is 2 years older than the stuff Boonen's been tappin'...

Bluenoser said...

Hey Snobbie,

Maybe Tommeke needs this guy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKss2pBYQ6Y

-B

Gary said...

That Kettler trike with distinctive bungee cord was parked outside El Toro taqueria on Valencia St in SF. The parents and 18 month old kid were munching burritos at the next table from me. If I see them again I'll tell them they're net.famous

BadBeard said...

601st!

Johnny Sprocket said...

How can breast implants be "slightly used"? Maybe they were Pams?

deffiinnatly said...

I don't see anything in the bike-helmet assault ad to indicate that her victim is a cyclist too. Or do they only allow cyclists into Croxley Ales?

Philip Williamson said...

El Toro!
Mmmm...

Anonymous said...

BSNYC:
"trime-trialing"

You had me at breast implants.

Anonymous said...

you know honey it's such a shame, you'll never be any good at this game. you bruise too easily.

CommieCanuck said...

Anon 4:07...Tyler Hamilton jokes are done. File with Marco Pantani and Roid Landis.

hillbilly said...

lot less comments when BGW is gone. maybe he was using multiple names. just sayin.....

ant1 said...

69th!

Wes said...

Don't be disgusting ant1.

ant1 said...

wes - do you mean discusting?

Bill said...

whole new meaning to KOM points

Tyler said...

I love the massive U lock on the stroller

Anonymous said...

lantern rouge

Etoro said...

Boonen:

http://velocitynation.com/content/features/2008/tom-boonens-pulp-reality

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