Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Contingency Plans: Fresh Rolls, Pit Dogs, Wet Feet, and Spare Wheels

Yesterday, I complained about the cycling world's obsession with the opening and consumption of beer. To illustrate this, I posted a video from Portland Design Works, which gratuitously shows that their "3wrencho" combination wrench and tire lever has "vital" bottle-opening capabilities. I then went on to express mock confusion concerning the fact that cyclists aren't similarly enthusiastic about other easily-obtained goods such as toilet paper. Well, not only have PDW heard my cry, but they've gone also so far to edit the "3wrencho" video accordingly:

3wrencho- marcal edit from PDW on Vimeo.

I was amazed and delighted to learn that, in addition to flat repair and bottle opening, you can also use the 3wrencho to proffer a roll of Marcal:

It's truly a testament to the ingenuity of the engineers at PDW that they had the foresight to design that functionality into the tool. Really, I have only one minor quibble, which is that the new toilet paper scenario shown in the video is rather implausible. If one were sitting on the toilet while perusing the artwork of Mike Giant only to find oneself out of toilet paper, one would not sit there shouting helplessly until a friend came to one's aid with a roll of Marcal and a 3wrencho; instead, one would simply do the logical thing and clean up after oneself using the Mike Giant art. I've found myself in a similar predicament many times while reading The New Yorker, and in each instance I was tremendously grateful for the work of Sasha Frere-Jones. I won't go into too much detail, but I will say that while Frere-Jones's writing may not be that engrossing from a literary standpoint, it is tremendously absorbing when it comes to personal hygiene. Sure, it's kinda scratchy, but that's nowhere near as irritating as actually trying to read it.

Ultimately, though, the "Oh drat!"-clenching-of-the-empty-toilet-paper-roll moment alone more than made up for this inaccuracy, and I only hope PDW continues to incorporate practical non-cycling applications into their bike tools. Bottle openers may be "cool," but if they want to give "hipsters" something they actually need instead of something cool then they should think about equipping future products with a built-in lice comb.

Speaking of Portlanders and ingenuity, their creativity is in no way limited to multitools. Proving once again that they are far more advanced than the rest of the country when it comes to anything involving cycling, they are now augmenting their cyclocross with actual dog racing:

This is great news for Portlanders and their dirty, hairy, smelly sidekicks (as well as for their dogs), though it's awful news for the rest of us. Portland cyclocross racers are already smug enough about how much muddier their races are than everyone else's; now on top of that they're going to start feeling superior to people who aren't forced to race through post-dog race waste. Soon struggling though knee-deep mud won't be enough to qualify a 'cross race as "epic;" you'll also need to face-plant into the feces of a Great Dane. (Yes, there's a "clydesdale" category.) Worst of all, though:

There’s even a special category for “carry-on and lap dogs” where owner must carry their dogs along the entire course.

This should mean every cyclocross-related forum on the Internet is going to be hijacked by "epic" threads about the proper technique for "portaging" a Yorkie. (Not to mention all the stupid accessories that are sure to follow.) The only real winner here is the pet industry, since dog ownership in Portland will surely double when everyone rushes to acquire a spare "pit dog." (Pit bulls, incidentally, make excellent pit dogs.)

Meanwhile, here in the World of Reality, in a neighborhood called New York City, we also have what aspires to be "bike culture," only it's a bit more quaint. For example, just last night was that "Biking Rules" PSA Film Festival at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Even though I was a juror in the PSA contest, I was "unable" to attend this gala, though I did ride by the building on the way back from my flimsy excuse. Presumably the building was filled with bike nerds, which would explain why it is radiating smugness:


Here are some of the bike nerds' "whips." Just try entering the rarefied world of bicycle advocacy without a leather saddle, swept-back handlebars, Wald baskets, fenders, and spoke cards and you are sure to wither beneath the raised nose of Lady Smugness:

I don't see any generator lights, though it could be that they're just waiting for Planet Bike to release a set that is powered by the rider's self-righteousness. I also don't know which PSA won, though I'm looking forward to finding out. Hopefully they gave David Byrne an honorary award for singlehandedly inventing the concept of riding a bicycle in New York City. (It's true--I saw in the Times.) Between Byrne and that guy who "independently" invented the mountain bike New York is truly a city of cycling pioneers.

Actually, I did consider attending the PSA festival, but I got cold feet. "Cold feet" is a condition that makes you apprehensive about doing something, as opposed to "wet feet," which is a condition that can make it highly dangerous to ride an R-Sys:

Mavic R-SYS Premium Clinchers - $1000 (Financial District)
Date: 2009-11-18, 12:33AM EST
Reply to: [deleted]

Brand New, put wheels and cassette on them, never been ridden, pretty much just been wheeled into and out of R&A. Shimano/Sram. Stupid light for alloy clincher. Have the skewers and the padded bags for them. Don't want to ride them cause I got wet feet and think I am a little to big for them (185 lbs). Currently have Pro Race 3's on them and would consider leaving them on if you don't dicker with the price too much, I paid through the nose for these....


Actually, riding an R-Sys under any circumstances can be dangerous, but if your feet are wet it's tantamount to suicide, so the poster is wise to sell. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if this explained what happened to Ben Delaney of VeloNews. The Mavic R-Sys literature clearly warns users that using them with wet feet can lead to catastrophic failure. (This should be of particular concern to triathletes.) I wonder if the Mavic Engineering Team checked to see if Delaney's socks were still damp.

Meanwhile, if you find yourself forced to palp your R-Syses (R-Si?) with wet feet, I would at least recommend carrying a spare set of wheels. While this may seem excessive, more and more New Yorkers are doing so. (It's possible that, due to the increasing popularity of cyclocross among "hipsters," "pit wheels" are the new top tube pad.) Just make sure that if you do carry spare wheels you don't accidentally leave them behind:

LOST/STOLEN: Mavic Ksyrium SLs - $100 (East Village)
Date: 2009-11-15, 7:53PM EST
Reply to: [delete]

I accidentally spaced tonite and unlocked my spare wheels and walked with my bike a block and a half away before realizing I left my wheels in front of Lula's Sweet Apothecary on 6th between Ave A & Ave B.
They are the '06 SLs, have Continental Touring tires on them, and are shimano-splined. They aren't the best wheels anymore, but they have sentimental value so if any kind soul has found them and is willing to return them I would reward them.
Thank you.


Here's another New York City rider who opts to travel with at least one spare wheel:

Some people choose to ride with only the two wheels on their bike and a spare tube, and others choose to bank on the durability of the tube and prepare themselves for wheel failure instead. It's definitely a "worst case scenario" approach, but I suppose it's not entirely without merit.

But not everybody in New York City is risk-averse. There's still some "edge" to be found here, as you can see from this potentially dangerous bike:


Not only is it equipped with wooden bars with integrated "grips:"


But it's also got a potentially crotch-savaging homemade leather saddle that would make Eric "The Chamferer" Murray chamfer out his own eyeballs in horror:

There's also this sweet Cleveland "theme bike" in the purple and black cityway:


It's 100% wet feet compatible. You can even ride it in flippers.


93 comments:

mattoidbunko said...

It's been a long time...

Anonymous said...

first

wishiwasmerckx said...

First?

Anonymous said...

podium

E said...

Top Ten

wishiwasmerckx said...

Fuck,these podium sprints are hard. Is it considered doping if I prepare a macro in advance so that I only have to press one button on the keyboard before hitting "enter?"

Dylan Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike giant said...

I'm gay ok?

hillbilly said...

WIWM - yes. and good idea.

Didn't we establish that the moron's name is Sasha, not Sacha?

Is Portland (sorry, PDX) trying to one-up everyone for absurdity, or does it just come naturally. Seany?

kale said...

10?

BikeSnobNYC said...

Hillbilly,

As I was typing that I told myself not to make the mistake yet made it anyway.

--BSNYC

Anonymous said...

Trop tren

Anonymous said...

yeah

Astroluc said...

YUMY BEER

Rick Donkey said...

I think I have lockjaw from just looking at that Centurion.

hillbilly said...

Can't Vito act as a spell/fact checker and throw feces at the screen or something when that happens?

BikeSnobNYC said...

Hillbilly,

The reality is Vito is useless as a fact-checker since he spends most of his time either pleasuring himself or watching movies like "Any Which Way But Loose" and "Dunston Checks In." (Sometimes he does both at the same time.)

--RTMS

Anonymous said...

I dunno. Should the Fat Cyclist have a contest to see how many Yorkies can be stuffed in a Wald basket?

Anonymous said...

A new (and presumably essential for R-Sys) accessory and/or component? "...just put wheels and cassette on ..."

kale said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mikeweb said...

punctuality will not be tolerated!

Disgruntl Ed. said...

The great mystery to me is why you would put wheels on your wheels, like the R-Sys seller did. Carrying around an extra wheel or two seems sensible by comparison.

I offer a "to" to precede "wither."

kale said...

This whole dog thing would open a whole new realm of themes for PDX: Recyclery collabo with the PDX humane society and Bike Gallery with the AKC, and of course there would be all the 'hand-bred' canineways from Vanilla, etc.

Astroluc said...

I accidentally spaced tonite and unlocked my spare wheels and walked with my bike a block and a half away before realizing I left my wheels in front of

Translation:

I had Way-y-y too many PBRs, which was also why I was walking rather than riding...

eric said...

I knew after 3 paragraphs this post was not to be trifled with. Snobby, your wit is sharper than the edges of that Centurion's saddle.

ant1 said...

ant1st!

kale said...

FWIW, that bro should have totally used square drive panheads instead of drywall screws for the saddle.

wishiwasmerckx said...

So, the description of Vito's favorite pastimes is indistinguishable from your own. They say dog owners begin to look like their dogs, but I was unaware that this applied to simians as well.

hillbilly said...

ah yes, don't we all, don't we all....

Billy Reid said...

Giro to DC!

ant1 said...

nice one today snobby.

hows yr edge said...

It should be noted that Lula's Sweet Apothecary is vegan ice cream joint. Obviously a hot (cool) bed of hipsterism. Perhaps the spacing came from a vegan ice cream induced sugar coma.

Klaus Mohn said...

Wednesday tweed!

Strayhorn said...

I actually like that homemade leather saddle. The brass wood screws are a nice touch. Wonder if I could get it in fashionable colors?

Meanwhile, I'm sad to discover from the photo that people actually use spoke cards. I thought the Snob had just been kidding about that.

The addition of dogs to the 'cross world is an interesting touch. I hope there's a class for people who can carry them on their heads, as African women do with their laundry.

I know, I know: don't give 'em any ideas . . .

Billy Reid said...

I think he got wet feet because he pissed himself when he saw what happened to Ben while riding on the R-Sys.

rezado said...

hi-rez

kale said...

Don't forget to check out the Centurion's custom theftproof seatpost binder bolt.

Anonymous said...

new york is soooo cool. i want to be just like you guys.

grog said...

. . . dogs playing poker with spoke cards . . .

. . . not having a dog, Vito decided to train his cat to race with the bicycle, with mostly unpleasant results.

Yes i did read correctly "vegan ice cream" but my brain said to me "vaginal ice cream". I started thinking about possible flavors.

rezado said...

Clydesdale?
The Mongolians will feel right at home.

ibn bin necker said...

so me and rikim we been thinkin we gots lots in comon with them mooslims likes they dont likes shaving and we dont neither and they likes guns and high explosives and so does we and they dont take no shit from no wiman and we dont neither except when jolene is on the rag or coming off oxycontin cos her doctor wont treat her migrain headaches no more

i even likes the ideal about all fat ugly chicks having to were burkas hell the ones around here except for jolene need a burlap sack over there heads

we gots to talk to them ayatoller fellers about granting special disclination to hotties so they kin were daisy duke shorts

thats what im sayin

Bad Lawyer said...

Of course, the "cleveland-themed" bike caught my eye, being somewhat acquainted with these mean streets . . . and I have to say Snobbie that fixie doesn't have nearly enough reflectors or a rear pie plate to qualify as "Cleveland." A malt liquor decal might have given me pause, but Cleveland?. . . only on the downtube.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, that bike's more like a "Middleburg Heights."

southpole said...

http://www.cyclepassion.com/
just in case you missed it ...

OnTheDick said...

you're so great.

CommieCanuck said...

Finally, dog racing and cyclocross together. But I think that beagle is a fighting beagle, which would merge dog-fighting and cyclocross, which will attract NFL players and just increase the size of this to a supersport.

They are already doing this in China, except there, they eat the losers.

MINGUStheMECHANIC said...

Aren't going to grant PDW an interview and let them defend their product? just kidding.

Wagner said...

http://www.santher.com.br/portugues/prodCons/snob/guardanapos/index.htm

snob is not enthusiastic about toilet paper, but he has his own brand of napkins...

Anonymous said...

The 3wrencho doesn't hold a candle to my vintage Helicomatic freewheel tool. It's got a real bottle opener on it, spoke wrenches and a bit to remove one of the crappiest freewheels ever made.

I DO like seeing the return of metal tire irons though. I hate those nylon jobs.

Dave said...

I might have accidentally spaced tonight when I inexplicably picked up a loose set of wheels left on the street.

Please contact me with details about the reward.

Anonymous said...

I DO like seeing the return of metal tire irons though. I hate those nylon jobs.

Who needs smooth breaking surface if you dont got no breaks, right?

leroy said...

BSNYC--

Thank you for reminding us that Mr. Frere-Jones' neighborhood has an entire academy devoted to music (and expensive popcorn).

Talk about street cred.

You won't find me gainsaying any insights he may have regarding Jared Leto. Or Yanni.

leroy said...

BSNYC --

You have inadvertently conflated Mr. Eastwood's and Clyde's oeuvre.

They did not make "Any Which Way But Loose."

They made "Every Which Way But Loose" and "Any Which Way You Can."

(Note to self: do not sit next to Vito at BAM screening "Eastwood/Clyde: the collaborative years." Not even if Vito offers to pay for the popcorn.)

Brian said...

I can't catch a break

CommieCanuck said...

That orangutan should have won the Oscar, not Eastwood. All Eastwood does is mumble and squint.

I heard he ate the orangutan after the second movie finished shooting.

Fierce Panties said...

The perfect accessory for my 85 Bridgestone T700 with swept back bars, Wald basket zip-tied to the rack, hand hammered fenders, and an AYHSMB leather saddle?
A BSNYC seal of disapproval spoke card. That's the only trash that I would allow blown into my spokes.

Salty Seattle said...

MMMM BEER


[No animals were harmed in the creation of this knuckle tatto.]

Salty Seattle said...

Or whatever it is I just said...

Hail Wednesday!

CommieCanuck said...

What's with the beer openers? Don't y'all have advanced Canadian twist-off technology, or cans?
CASA, the Canadian Aromatic Suds Agency worked hard in the 80s to eliminate beer openers in our lifetime.

Udder said...

Apparently the rider of the white Centurion with the wooden bars only turns left, as the bars are not centered and there would be a natural lean.

Is this a NASCAR bike?

An English major said...

I just happened to notice that the title to this post contains the oxford comma, denigrated elsewhere on this blog.

rural 14 said...

ant 2nd!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

I DO like seeing the return of metal tire irons though. I hate those nylon jobs.

Who needs smooth breaking surface if you dont got no breaks, right?

Smooth breaking surfaces are for dancing or Jens Voigt style sliding. Now, I don't have Crabon Frisee rims, but I can't recall ever marring the braking surface of any rim with a metal tire iron.

Fred said...

The Oxford comma is the Fred of punctuation.

Anonymous said...

Am I going blind or does the bike with blue deep-Vs have the brake lever mounted on top of a bar tape?

flynn said...

i use Marcal for bar tape

Anonymous said...

i use marcal as an impromptu self-destructive chamois

Benbo1008 said...

Tru dat re the only redeeming use of an article by Sasha (Sacha?) Frere-Jones. I cringe every time I see an article with his byline. I don't know who he's scr@!#ing at the New Yorker, but he's not there because of his writing.

Smuggie said...

Chamfer? I chafe!
Dear Sir, it's called skiving!


HEY! Is that a double toe-strap on the water bottle cage in that picture?

Sami said...

With all due respect, Mr. Snob, you need an editor.

"...if you're feet are wet..."

I am available to provide you with some much-needed editorial oversight, should you see fit to use me.

Klaus Mohn said...

English Major 4.44:
Who gives a fuck?

VAMP IRE
WEEK END

It looks like Ezra Koenig has a finger missing on his left hand.

Scott said...

It looks like your bike nerds have not yet discovered dutch bikes.

Bad Lawyer said...

CC--

changing pics in mid-post, tossing off Canadian Nanny-state witticisms like so many empty water bottles...you never cease to astound me with your peloton leadership!

Bad Lawyer said...

* the day before yesterday, you deleted your thoughtful defense of Lemond? Lemond may be a pantload, but Lemond's earned a worthy defender. And you set out a worthy defense, why the delete?

CommieCanuck said...

delete?

I don't even know how to delete a comment once it's posted.

MajorMantra said...

Speaking of R-si, I was amused to learn in my mechanical engineering lecture the other day that "Rsys" (sys is a subscript) is the numerical expression of the reliability of a system. Ironeeeeee....

Bad Lawyer said...

CC, not you...Asterisk deleted his Lemond post.

ryan said...

wait, is this spare business for real? is it spreading? is the spare a 650c for doing sweet barspins at the spot? i don't get this, but that does not surprise me.

bk jimmy said...

That Cleveland bike is ingenious--the owner has obviated the sadness of unused canti studs while setting up a rack high enough to ford the Ohio River!

Stoked on Spokes said...

actually the translation of "spaced" is i raced in NJ earlier and snapped my derailleur on the last lap after the pit, and sprinted the whole last lap. then had to walk my bike and shit the 7 miles back to the train station. so i was pretty far gone and had too much mud in my brain. later when i was looking for them a friend who was there said they saw then get taken while my back was turned and i was right there, but said friend didn't realize they were my wheels. some friend.


yes, totally admit it was my "spare" wheels. got 'em back. they were my road wheels that i use to get around/train on because i race on tubulars. yes, race, not sit and comment on blogs all day. but thanks BikeSnob, you are part of the force that helped me get the wheels back.

Bluenoser said...

Commie,

You seemed to have missed the Canadian Robertsons on the seat of the Centurian.

-B

Anonymous said...

RE:Physical Culture Underware.I do believe the bulk of those styles are called "hipsters" and i cant believe you overlooked that ultimate dis

Anonymous said...

RE:Physical Culture Underware.I do believe the bulk of those styles are called "hipsters"and i cant believe you omitted the obvious dis

Anonymous said...

RE:Physical Culture Underware.I do believe the bulk of those styles are called "hipsters"and i cant believe you omitted the obvious dis

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Anonymous said...

RE: Contingency Plan - You don't see it much today, but when I was racing road TTs about 25 years back, it wasn't that uncommon to see other competitors riding out to the event with their 'race' wheels attached to the forks. There was a particular clip-on rack that allowed you to carry a wheel on each side. Now of course, everyone just drives out to races !