Friday, April 2, 2010

BSNYC Fridaculous Fun Quiz!

This is an exciting weekend for cycling. First of all, the Tour of Flanders will take place, which means that the types of people who are really into romantic images of suffering and "embrocation" will hold Belgian-themed viewing parties. Also, at least here in New York City, the weekend looks like it will feature a very pleasant weatherway, and this means the riding should also be quite pleasant. You might even get a chance to "wheelsuck" behind some hardcore cyclists with "weird style diktats:"

Ironically, though, the best thing about this weekend in terms of cycling is that it marks the start of the New York International Auto Show. I always enjoy when the car show comes to town because it throws the "bike culture" types into a tizzy of smugness. In a way, "bicycle advocacy" is quite similar to the Tour of Flanders, in that each is decided by a small group:

Anyway, every year when the car show comes to town, the "smugerati" like to reflect on what it means:

Of course, what it means is simple: New York City is the media capital of the United States, so if you want journalists to come and take picture of your crap, this is a good place to display it. However, this is too easy for the "bike culture," who prefer to put the whole thing in "culture vs. culture" terms, and to treat the car show like Passover by dwelling melodramatically on the suffering of our ancestors:

Speaking of the local "bike culture," it has a "celebrity spokesperson" in the form of David Byrne, an artist who used to focus on music but who now works in the media of smugness and bike racks:

A reader recently alerted me to a Byrne interview on CNN, and even though it focused on his view of song lyrics he also took the opportunity to remind viewers of the following two things for some reason:

"I don't listen to the radio very much but that could be because I don't have a car."

"I ride a bicycle to work every day."

This is great for David Byrne. Furthermore, I have nothing whatsoever against Byrne, who like any hardworking person deserves his success. I do, however, think the New York City "bike culture" is making a huge mistake by holding him forth as an example all the time. Yes, despite presumably having plenty of money David Byrne does not own a car; furthermore, he rides a bicycle to work (as many of us do). But let's consider New York City itself:

As you can see, it's a very big place. But here's where David Byrne lives and works:

Not only is this a very small portion of the city, but it's also one of the most expensive places in the city (if not the entire country). Obviously, by no means is everybody who lives there well-off; also obviously, there's nothing inherently wrong with being well-off. Still, the fact remains that relatively few people can make the choice to live and work where David Byrne does, and even the well-off can't always live where they work.

If we widen our view somewhat, we see the area in which most members of the "bike culture" live, work, and recreate. This is larger than the David Byrne-iverse, but it's still a relatively small portion of the entire city:

Here, too, rent and real estate is expensive, and not everybody can decide to live and work here (unless they predate gentrification and got "grandfathered in"). For those who can, though, it is still small enough that riding a bicycle is an easy choice.

Here, though, is the whole city, and it might amaze some members of the "bike culture" to learn that actual people live there:

Sure some of these unfortunate people are tragically unfamiliar with the world of "five Japanese slow-drippers," "Saffron Kings," and expensive cocktails with excellent "mouth feel," but I assure you that they are people nonetheless.

What's more, like anything great, New York City is more than the sum of its parts, and you really can't understand it without also taking the surrounding area into account:

Really, New York is a huge place filled with friends and relatives, employers and employees, and so forth, all of whom need and want to interact with each other and to obtain goods and services. We're not all individuals who exist in tiny Byrne-iverses; we need to travel all over all the time:

You can't even see the David Byrne-iverse under all this mess. The truth is, not having a car can be a difficult and expensive decision to make. I know David Byrne rides his bicycle to work every day, and I know he takes a bicycle with him on tour, but I would wager that he's no stranger to the occasional Town Car. I'm guessing he does not ride his bicycle to the airport. I'm sure he uses motor vehicles while touring. In fact, it would not surprise me to learn that, despite not owning a car, Byrne spends way more money on car travel than a family of four in a modest neighborhood who commute by train but also own a Honda Civic. Can the family of four use bicycles a lot more than they realize? Almost certainly. Does the transportation infrastructure need to change to better accommodate bicycles and pedestrians? Undoubtedly. But if the "bicycle culture" really wants to make bicycle use seem normal and accessible, I'm not sure citing David Byrne as an example is the most effective way to go about it. I'm no stranger to the Gentri-verse and I ride my bike all the time, and I can't even relate to him--which, I guess, is why I also can't always relate to the "bike culture," since they seem so determined to rarefy the normal.

Anyway, I'm pleased to present you with a quiz. As always, study the item, think, and click on your answer. If you're right you'll know, and if you're wrong you'll travel to "back in the day."

Thanks very much for reading, ride safe, and keep it universal.


--BSNYC/RTMS





1) These homemade wooden handlebar extenders were spotted by a reader in:



2) This bicycle, spotted by another reader, indicates that chain-drive "p-fars" may be the future of fashionable cycling:





3) What's the best part of owning a crabon fribé bicycle?






("Wait, what kind of bike is that? Hard to tell from the subtle branding.")

4) Rock & Republic, the company founded by Rock Racing director Michael Ball, has filed for bankruptcy protection.

--True
--False




5) "That's my Portland!" The newest use for bicycles in "Stumptown" is:






6) Good news for New York City bike commuters! An inventor is now offering:






7) Why is this topless woman holding a Trek?




***Special "I Have No Idea What They're Saying"-Themed Bonus Question***

92 comments:

Daddo said...

chicken dinner?

shoegazer said...

thanks snobby
thanks mom
go george!

shoegazer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jefe said...

Podium?

shoegazer said...

loveless

Jefe said...

Almost.

rezado said...

hi-rez

Adam said...

top ten!

ryan said...

top ten? but i havent taken the quiz yet.

Wu Mingzi said...

The Miraculous Mandarin -- ah, Snobby, my love for you continues to grow!

innerlighter said...

made it!?

innerlighter said...

damn.

Anonymous said...

クロスバイク。

urchin said...

Hm--no right answers for the first two questions. Is this a zen thing?

IBS said...

The name on the frame is ... suck it.

Anonymous said...

heu mais qui? je ne suis meme pas dans les vingt premier . Putain de bordel de merde la putain de sa mere de fils de pute de pd encule de merde. it is like wipping your ass wiz silk

rezado said...

the answer for number one is screwed up

Anonymous said...

FLAN DERS

FLAN DERS

FLAN DERS

!!!! !!!!

rezado said...

yeah this is fridaculous

hillbilly said...

Right on, btwn Byrne and that schluffer Sullivan, I would prefer to not be advocated for, I'll take Paul Carbonara as my representative

Jefe said...

After watching the Jumpin Joe Hendricks video several times, I skipped to the next You-Tube selection of his 1980's NBA halftime appearance. I couldn't help notice that his stunts would not even make a Danny McCaskill blooper video. It's great to see the progress Man has made in using a bicycle for something other than traveling from one place to another.

Anonymous said...

Cars? And not the awful Okasekian whiners.
With the dachshund and Weiss references this blog is beginning to lean in the germanicway direction. As any capable intern will tell you "lobster" is Hummer in german. Is BSNYC secretly worshiping an obscenely obscene but soon to be extinct SUV? Are the followers being brainwashed??

Anonymous said...

Asian bike porn gives me a woody.

Anonymous said...

New York is big enough to do a century ride without leaving the city (and you don't even have to go to Stagnant Island!).

IBS said...

Maybe the hummer being referred to isnt of the gas guzzling variety but of the nut guzzling nature.

DEEZ NUTS

Fat said...

People like Byrne love to pat themselves on the back...and when that person is famous, other people love to join in with the patting and show it off as if it were their accomplishment (while ignoring negatives such as extra town car use). I'm skeptical if Boonen or Cancellara will be able to pull off a win Sunday.

Anonymous said...

Thank you again for succinctly summing up my thoughts which I often lack the words to express. I avoid bike culture like the plague. I almost always ride my bike to work. But when it snows, I sometimes have to drive in and the plow the roads for the cars. Does this make me an enabler?
P.S. Spotted on a bumper sticker: "Carpe Deez Nuts."

MoeAlfa said...

Those Mormon guys must have left their jackets somewhere.

veloChine said...

Snobby,

Can you share how translated the last Quiz question? Was it a coincidence that you used traditional chinese characters (which is what people in Taiwan use). I any event, very impressive

Billy Reid said...

ooh, someone is curating the car museum!

Mike said...

Hilarity delivered again!

IBS said...

这些坚果

Helen said...

Nice post.

IBS said...

Helen,

Thanks. I get that all the time.

IBS said...

My crabon post is built for speed.

samh said...

What the hell does "Fruit taste stone child good 吃" mean?

ervgopwr said...

FRID AY!!

Daddo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Daddo said...

"despite not owning a car, Byrne spends way more money on car travel than a family of four in a modest neighborhood who commute by train but also own a Honda Civic."

Maybe it's because I like his music - pretense and all - but I feel DB needs a bit of defense. My sense is that he rides a bike not to be smug (he does a lot of other things for that) but because its better and quicker than a car and that he enjoys it. I would tend to think, that if you factor OUT the type of car use that he does (while on tour and other "rock-starly" duties) that a family of 4 in a modest neighborhood actually spends way more on car travel than he does. A

And more importantly than defending him, I would LOVE to see the Snob and he try to prove/disprove the Snobs hypothesis in a kind of blog-off. Now THAT would be fun.

Go at it boys!

sufferist said...

Are people double posting on purpose today or is there something wrong with the commenterator?

sufferist said...

Are people double posting on purpose today or is there something wrong with the commenterator?

Bo Bo said...

After Harelbeke, there is no way Boonen's going to let Flecha finish anywhere near him! I say Tommeke and Cancellara will cancel each other out allowing Breschel to escape for the win. I also think Rabo's going to be a surpise which I say only as a pretext to write

LARS BOOM

Nogocyclist said...

Is there something wrong with the comments? I left a long... OK a very long comment... and my computer had an error. It did not post. I went and ate lunch and when I came back the comment was there.

I see a bunch of double comments, so I am guessing it is happening to others.

Anonymous said...

這是什麼?

vewy cwevah

Bo Bo said...

Oh, and the leaders will look back to see Hincapie having good sensations again.

Anonymous said...

stop saying flanders over there.

yogisurf said...

"I'm not sure citing David Byrne as an example is the most effective way to go about it."

Snobby, David may not be the best person to get people out of cars and onto bikes, but it all helps.

I'm leaving work early today (on my bike) to go to the dentist. I’m riding my titanium bike to the dentist since that’s the only way he lets me park it in his office. My new $800 crown will help him buy his next Serotta.

Anonymous said...

If not David Byrne, then whom?

Raquel Schmidt said...

wtf?

Mikey said...

What is the name on the frame?

Sigurd said...

"Hey honey, hold up my bike so I can get a good pic. And uh ... take off everything but your panties".
"?!?"
"Because, dummy, it'll really help move this bike! You're the one who said we'll be short this month! Come on, strip down so I can get this ad up. It's not like I'll show your face or anything!"

Manhatten Labor Control Moderator said...

Is Spencer on vacation or do you just have him doing the filing?

iTaint a sin said...

Embrocating my chamois is one of my few pleasures in life.

Jefe said...

I've discovered that if I put my cursor over a commentor's name and press the F1 key, while holding down Control, Alt, Delete, I can delete their posts. So be careful! Oh, and with Shift and Scroll, I can cause double postings.

urchin said...

OK, I'll be the one to pick poor George to crash. Hey, I'm a fan, but what are they doing going to completely new bikes two days before the cobbles?

BARS SNAP

npj

Jefe said...

I've discovered that if I put my cursor over my name in the comments and press the F1 key, while holding down Control, Alt, Delete, the photograph disappears from the right.

I am still trying to figure out how to change everyone else's photograph. When I figure this out, watch out!

Anonymous (for a reason) said...

Jefe,

I had to ;p

Don't tell people all my tricks.

Ronsonic said...

A silly percentage of the Gentri-verse considers itself well traveled if they've seen all five boroughs. They generally have no concept of the geographic scale that most people demand in autonomous travel.

Anonymous said...

BikeSnobNYC in even another language.

Anonymous said...

Snobby,

Bike to Work month is coming up. Need to edjumacate the newbies about fenders. I remember a PSA you had a few years ago --- Fenders: because it's probably urine.

Can you post it again?

rural 14 said...

ant 2nd! - back from a flat city, wherein riding is much faster. Here in rural 14land...the distances are longer, and it's durn hilly. So getting around, esp in winter, is a big committment...if there were a bit more support from the highway dept, it'd be a bit better (though we do have more and more "share the road" signs etc up here. though they are put up in random places). Surely there's some sort of rural bike resource / coalition thing out there? But haven't found it.

Jefe said...

Anonymous (for a reason) 9:28 p.m.: You are very tricky. Others may not realize Jefe 9:18 was not me. The official Jefe comes with a Tour of the Battenkill race photo. Don't accept imitations.

jake said...

The locking Japanese bike in the last video had quick release skewers on its wheels..

Anonymous said...

http://cgi.ebay.com/Triathlon-bike-bicycle-all-custom-carbon-sickest-bike_W0QQitemZ220579149669QQcmdZViewItemQQptZRoad_Bikes?hash=item335b8ab765#ht_818wt_1165

ultimate rich guy bike. lets play guess the sellers career: hedge fund owner or hedge fund owner?

Heh heh said...

"This bike has only been ridden a few times in Central Park NYC."

gih said...

Wow! that woman lifting a bike is so strong. Is that edited? 'coz that bike is heavy I think.

cyclegoddess said...

I swear the woman holding up that bike ....is me.

Anonymous said...

Please, more pictures of Jews on bikes! I LOVE it! Hilarious! Jews are such fucking spazzes.

Anonymous said...

fair trade bike coffee.

wet liberal.

M. Cippo said...

That ebay pic is totally biting my practice of using live topless bicycle stands!

PCLA said...

I always thought that "emBROcation" meant making new friends- "Alright bro, we're homies now!"

frilly said...

No more dissing hipsters! Today I had the misfortune of flatting on a downhill. Scary. Made it over to the sidewalk and got my stuff out to change my tire. This street is on a well traveled cycling route, however this stretch is in a sort of bad neighborhood. So I was kind of nervous. Anyway, I was fumbling around like a 16 yr old in a backseat praying that somebody would stop to help. Two roadies had already gone by. A hipster on a single speed stopped, got off his bike, and took command of the operation. His bike has a flip/flop hub & he rides fakie sometimes. Yes, I had to ask. So if you were the dude who helped me change my tire on Tower Grove Ave today, Thanks again!

Cognorant said...

Glad that all worked out for you Frilly, friendly folks come in all kinds of persuasions!!

Cognorant said...

I usually don't play this game but.....

Cognorant said...

It's late and I can't sleep

Cognorant said...

and I can't ever come close to podium at the start..

Cognorant said...

Sooo.......100!!

ant1 said...

ant1st!

Pontius Pilate said...

HAIL CZSR

-P.P.

Pontius Pilate said...

I would have been here sooner, but Good Friday is a pretty busy day for the likes of yours truly.

-P.P.

Sudarma said...

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Spam Musubi said...

@ Sudarma:

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Anonymous said...

Dude,we all waiting for you to say something about that "notorious" LANDMARK BICYCLES shop,in NY.Biggest bunch of incompetent,scummy idiots this city has ever seen in years.Plenty material there!

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