Friday, April 23, 2010

BSNYC Friday Fun Quiz! [insert "karate hands" here]

(This Obama-themed "tarck" bike is even more ironic now.)

As you've no doubt heard by now, the big local cycling-related news story yesterday was that the NYPD clipped and carted away hundreds of bicycles in downtown Manhattan, citing security concerns for President Barack Obama's speech at Cooper Union:

("Got another bomb here. Should I just throw it onto the truck with the rest of them?")

More specifically, it seems they suspected that the bicycles could potentially be "pipe bombs"--which, as one commenter on the afore-linked-to story wryly pointed out, is why they sent a bunch of officers in windbreakers instead of a bomb squad. Yes, I guess we've all been brainwashed by Hollywood--whereas movies like the "Hurt Locker" might lead you to believe that potentially explosive devices should be defused and disposed of by experts wearing armor, I guess in real life the safest course of action is to get a bunch of thick-necked people from Patchogue to hack away at the locks and then pile all the bombs onto a flatbed truck. (I wonder who an officer has to piss off to draw the "driving the truck full of possibly explosive bikes" detail. Really, if anybody should be upset about this, it should be the cops, whose lives are apparently worth less to the city than bomb robots.) Then again, I wasn't there, so for all I know the deadly bikes were all inspected by experts first, and then once they were deemed to be safe they were then cut and carted--which still doesn't make sense, since at that point they might as well just have left them there. In any case, I suspect someone somewhere just panicked at the possibility that something might explode near the President on his watch, since the whole operation has the finesse of a teenage stoner shoving his pot paraphernalia under the bed and desperately trying to clear the air with a copy of "Maxim" when he hears his parents coming home.

Speaking of things lacking finesse, I would like to remind you that my first book-related appearance (or BRA) will take place on May 1st at the Powerhouse Arena in Brooklyn, and since I've never addressed more than three people at a single time (yelling at Access-A-Ride vans doesn't count) I should be about as smooth as a Nü-Fred "palping" his first IRO:

Nevertheless, I very much hope you'll join me, if only to find out what a "bike lover's prize pack" is. (I hear this guy was using one when they caught him in flagrante velo.) Plus, I may even "sweeten the pot" with some additional stuff. (And by "sweetening the pot" I don't mean I'm going to be bringing a honey bear bong.) Also, this coming Monday, I'll be visiting the radio station WFMU:

If you had told me years ago that one day I would appear on the very same radio station as the guy from Voivod, I would never have believed you. (I also would have desperately tried clear the air with a Voivod album sleeve had you knocked first.)

In the meantime, 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 receive a bike lover's prize pack absolutely nothing but a sense of smug satisfaction, and if you're wrong you'll get to hang with the "Bike Headz."

Thank you very much for reading and for forwarding items, ride safe, and be sure to nurse that post-Earth Day smugness hangover. (I hear burning plastic shopping bags works wonders.)


1) "Help! Somebody call the NYPD!" Yes, Langster can indeed be used as a "velo-weapon."


3) Fill in the blank: "FINGER ____"


4) In Berlin, what's the penalty for hurting a pedestrian while on your bicycle?

--€20, maybe

5) Why is Alexandre Vinokourov nonplussed?

(Math = Mental "Karate Hands")

6) "Snytace aero bars" + "Dur ace group" + "spinergy rims" + "Clipsless peddles" =________

--One (1) "epic" Softride

7) P-fars are sooo 19th century.

***Special Cliché-Themed Bonus Question***

"Stop and smell the _______:"


VK said...


mattoidbunko said...

I'm back!!

VK said...


VK said...

Crap - 3 of 4

ant1 said...


VK said...


ant1 said...

what the hell snobby? 10 am? no work today?

VK said...

My first "first" - after back-to-back centuries. Ah, truly an epic day.

shoegazer said...

well doggie!

ant1 said...

congrats VK.

Anonymous said...

hey, top 10!

Anonymous said...


VK said...

Thanks, Ant1st. You have been my Merckx-like inspiration and I only hope to get half as many 1st as you did in your heyday.

10,000 Aches said...

I gotta start taking my training seriously now that RTMS is writing full time.


Anonymous said...

"the FIRST! Guy--the mental marsupial whose contribution to the great discussions of our online times is to post the first response to any given topic, consisting of the comment "FIRST!" Clever? No. Original? No. Ironically self-mocking in a postmodern deconstructionist kind of way? Uh, no. Puerile? Now you're getting close. And yet there seem to be multiple FIRST! Guy clones lurking around every forum, ready to share a very important message."


Anonymous said...

16th! best score for me!

frilly said...

Geez, Snobby, I feel like I'm back in school--only one cup of coffee, late for an early class, and I failed the quiz.

waxmouth said...

Pipe bombs?! That is an outrageous pretext for confiscating hundreds of bikes. If my bike were confiscated, there is no way I could prove ownership, beyond showing a couple of photos (I don't have a serial number registered or anything like that). Or can anyone just walk into the precinct and say, "um, that's my bike over there, officer, the expensive-looking one..."

Is the NYPD reimbursing for the $100 kryptonites that they cut?

Ai me! I'm gonna put on my windbreaker and go dismantle some pipe bombs.

Astroluc said...

18 wikkid early post

Nogocyclist said...

Wow! Easiest post I can ever remember.

7sp said...

I'd like to adress the whole "ironic" thing (, etc.), if you don't mind:

What exactly makes the fixie hipster esthetic inherently "ironic" to such an extent that it must always be referred to as such?

I'm thinking: the first time someone puts on an ugly pair of pants/handlebars because they are ugly he/she is probably ironic. But all consecutive imitators aren't. The irony is a threshold state, then it's just fashion.

ant1 said...

"the complain about people saying FIRST! Guy--the mental marsupial whose contribution to the great discussions of our online times is to post criticism of people who enjoy being the first to comment "FIRST!" Clever? No. Original? No. Ironically mocking in a postmodern deconstructionist kind of way? Uh, no. Puerile? Now you're getting close. And yet there seem to be multiple complain about people saying FIRST! Guy clones lurking around every forum, ready to share a very important criticism."

RG said...

Personal property means nothing to Socialists. Only when people stand up to them will respect for property be re-established.

ant1 said...

RG - i thought the cops were fascists? at least that's what lebowski said.

hillbilly said...

same as what frilly said.

in high school i showed up to our 'morning meeting' late as asst principal was discussing tardiness and he added that getting a ride to school with me was a legitimate excuse.

Daddo said...

early - somebody must be getting out of town

waxmouth said...

Note that the fine for salmoning in Berlin (or, as the Guardian article put it, "if you cause havoc cycling in the wrong direction") is 10 Euros more than what you pay for hitting a pedestrian.

Pontius Pilate said...



mikeweb said...

Dang!! The weekend started early up in heah!

Buffalo Bill said...

I finally aced the quiz, I must be a morning person! Note, that epic softride comes with a spare set of Zipps.

Also, if that pfar has a chain drive, is it still a pfar?

CommieCanuck said...

Geez, Snobby, I feel like I'm back in school--only one cup of coffee, late for an early class, and I failed the quiz

That's ok, just get a retro-active sick note from a doctor/relative, get yourself diagnosed with ADHD, and you get a pass without ever working again.

I actually rarely watch those YewToob video links, but this was was fascinating, as this guy who clearly is useless on that bike fells compelled to make a video for widespread entertainment, yet cannot garner even a head turn from passers-by. They are below non-plussed, they are anti-plussed.


Vino Browz said...






Nogocyclist said...

Oops! In my comment at 10:46 I used a wrong word. It should say earliest, not easiest. Sorry Snob, I did not mean to belittle your Friday Fun Quiz.

And no I did not stop at the bicycle pub in Portland. I just stayed up to late last night trying to come up with great comments to make instead of "First."

The removing of bikes for the purpose of stopping the potential of their use for weapons is much more likely just an excuse to remove the bikes so crowds can watch the motorcade.

My very next comment is in honor of Anonymous 10:27. I am not trying to make the podium.

Nogocyclist said...


Astroluc said...

BE on the lookout for a poilce bike auction in about a month... yes, you too can buy your bike back from the people who stole it "legally" under the pretense of safety.

Free country? my ass.


Anonymous said...

This bike is a pipe bomb.

CommieCanuck said...

So, we need to fight back.

The internet is losing valuable space for animal couch porn, to douchebag hipsters riding bikes.

We need to start a project: contact those guys who upload the videos, posing as a Hollywood producer, and offer them ridiculous contracts, while going on about their awesomeness.

In a perfect scenario, we also need to burn James Huang. I say we see how long we can jerk these guys' chains.

I vote Snob to do it, and start the framework for book II, now that I hear that James Cameron has bought the rights from book I.

mikeweb said...

I give it maybe a couple of weeks before an enterprising person imports a bunch of unlabeled track frames from Taiwan or China and creates a new brand:

Pipe Bomb

Anonymous said...

The Mavic Bike Bomb - An explosive ride.

rezado said...


Red neckerson said...

It's morning and I ain't even close

I'm sitting in the pubic libary with them computers with spel chek habin to grade papers from them brats at eku

when me and rikim ain't looking at porn just like them lazyassed wall street fellers I study mideval lit and philosophy

them brats don't know shit about chauser

IBS said...

If you think that daisy is in a weird place you should see where I have a sunflower tattooed

Anonymous said...

Manhattan cyclists were lucky by comparison. The city of Oakland CA. has been updating parking meters to a new electronic system.

Early on in the transition, city workers went around the downtown area lopping the heads off a bunch of the old mechanical meters that were being phased out. A whole bunch of bikes locked to the meters were immediately stolen.

Municipal Brain Fart.

Anonymous said...

Another California idiocy:

In the months after 9/11, the bike lane along the Golden Gate Bridge was shut down "for security reasons." Meanwhile, any number of tractor trailers passed over the bridge every minute.

Is there any explosive so powerful that an amount small enough to fit in a bike frame would bring down a structure that big?

Jefe said...

Pipe bombs? Sure. This is just an NYPD plan to preempt Critical Mass. Look for bike confiscations after all future official visits. I think the Ambassador from Lichtenstein is coming next week.

CommieCanuck said...

Is there any explosive so powerful that an amount small enough to fit in a bike frame would bring down a structure that big?

You need to read Bikeforums. Hollow crabon frames can fail CATASTROPHICALLY, forcing keyboards to get stuck on all caps. Using crabon as the igniter, you can store anthrax in the top tube, diesel in the down tube and fertilizer in the seat tube.

Don't you watch "24"? Trust no one.

ant1 said...

"forcing keyboards to get stuck on all caps." genius.

Anonymous said...

Maybe I should get Obama to visit my neighbor so the cops could clear out all the old junkers left to rot on the street. Nothing like caring about the local environment.

spacemodular said...

Ah... Now you get to experience how crazy the fans really are!

Anonymous said...


Michael said...

Who leaves bikes on Houston Street? Me (when in NYC, or now in Seattle) I never leave my bike unwatched (and locked) for more than 5-10 minutes. If I have to stay longer - I'll put it in a building. I'm willing to bet most of those bikes on Houston Street were junkers. No I don't like NYPD action.

Anonymous said...

My bike is da bomb!

Daddo said...

(make up your own jokes)

Kevin said...

Hey Snob, et al:
Do any of you know the name of the series of YouTube videos, narrated in English, that document some of the hardest stages and most famous rides in Tour de France history? Specifically, I'm looking for the video that documents José Luis Viejo Gómez's 22 minute win over 2nd place in the 11th stage of the 1976 TdF.

VK said...

Anon 10:27 - try harder next time. The grapes might taste sweeter then.

In the meantime:

So are those bikes returned? If not, will there be some sort of an auction and a change to buy Cervelos for $100? I could look it up, but easier to just ask here.

Ronsonic said...

This is just NYPD payback for the bro' going on trial for out-douching the CM douche.

Plausible enough, I say. Let's go with it.

Anonymous said...

In relation to the security threat posed by bicycles I was going make a smart-arse comment about the Big Dummy's truck like capability, but such a comment would probably be caught in some sort of internet surveillance filter and have one added to a terrorist watch list, so I won't go there!

However, it's probably too late given the key words in my knuckle tat idea at 10:16, and as for CommieCanuck at 12:58, well he's f**ked isn't he! They're probably kicking his door in as I type.



Ufdder said...

The removal of the bikes by NYC is part of the economic stimulus package. It's called "No cash for your clunker."

But you do get a coupon for $5 off on an American made Rivendell bike.

thegock said...


Anonymous said...

By the way, I'm not Anon 10:27.


ant1 said...

i heard the bikes could be picked up at the 7th precinct, bring a pic of you with the bike.

Anonymous said...


mikeweb said...


I can envision thousands of computer screens with the splash screen for Photoshop being started up after your last comment.

yogisurf said...

Government at its best. I hope the world’s greatest Madone survived.

Salty Seattle said...

Loved number 5!

There I was thinking that "non-plussed" did not accurately describe Vino's penchant for gazing off into the distance self-importantly, as though he was practicing for a career in modelling men's fashion. And then, I clicked on the answer (the only one I got right.)

I'm still glad to see Ivan McDreamy back in the peloton, as his "cute, but stupid" antics get me every time.

Anonymous said...



Salty Seattle said...

Snobbie wasn't early today.

He's just changed all his clocks to operate in the DST time zone. (Daddy Standard Time.)

grog said...

Bike Lovers Prize Pack

Thank you Snobbers.

Salty Seattle said...

Oh, and Snobbie,

I hope your first BRA offers you better support, provides you good definition, and makes you feel cute, more than my first one did. And Trust me. They will get bigger.

I am sad to say that my unpaid intern will not be in attendance, as she will--hopefully--return from Mexico that day.

Oh crap! I gotta start getting my documentation together!

Etoro said...

"Let Astana have their Tartar Sauce"
- Charles Montgomery Burns

Anonymous said...

Same deal with the large drum of potentially explosive liquids at the airport. I guess logic doesn't apply during wartime.

J-Bird said...

NYPD probably heard those bikes were flashing their tire tits.

Salty Seattle said...

Thinking disjointedly this week. Sorry for the multiples of comments.

I tend to beieve the whole bike-confiscation thing is a huge conspiracy by the Transportation Alternatives (I mean, Tax Alternatives) folks that you guys have out there. Afraid to raise the ire of the tax-fearing, your city's government conceived of an ingenious, evil plan:

1) get people excited about cycling as an alternative form of transportation
2) get them to buy their own bikes with their own money
3) get them to start riding consistently, such that streets are regularly filled with bikes
4) Harvest!

My other theory is that the NYPD is collecting the bikes as payment to the mafia, for 'security purposes.'

I kid! I kid!

But, I'm sure it's only a matter of time before this starts happening in cities across the US.

Forget Road-ID. You won't be in a bike crash, if you don't have a bike. ID your Bike!

JL said...

Was there a sign saying bikes left there would be confiscated? This was a scheduled visit...

Anonymous said...

Voivod?! Hilarity!

Fred said...

I'm printing up the "Ceci n'est pas une pipe-bomb" top-tube pads right now.

Should make a killing with all the graphic artists/liberal arts types who lost their bikes recently.

Anonymous said...

I only ride crabon pipe bombs that weight less than 6 babies.

Snobby, you continually slay me with the quiz video. But it hurts so good.

Happy weekend!

Anonymous said...

The banging finger (and its hand) in that picture looks all wet or sweaty or greasy...

...just sayin'

ringcycles said...

7/7 and the bonus! Ah, the spring training regime is paying off. I am inspired by #7 to manufacture a set of tweed knickers with embroidered messages across the back, ala Rock and Republic. "P-Fars Not Dead!"

Anonymous said...

I read the Outside article. I'm very depressed you're already married.

Anonymous said...

@RG 10:54

teabag much?

Salty Seattle said...

I love you all.

San Fran Nan said...

I thought all those bikes belonged to right-wing bastards.


Leo said...

Those bikes should have had a "this bike is not a pipe bomb" bike sticker on the frame. they're all over tucson, where they are printed by worlds best bike stickers.

B-rad said...

Maxim? I think not. Hustler or Club.

Jase said...



Anonymous said...

Leo, speaking of stickers:



Nogocyclist said...

Via Leo The sticker. It's about half way down. Don't know anything about the site, but they do have some cool stickers for bikes.

Ambassador Fail said...

What's going on?

Anonymous said...


glenna said...

PennyFarthings make me hard.

theshepherdsdog said...

7 out of 7, first time ever getting a perfect score

Bike Headz said...


Anonymous said...

Has anyone here read graham greene's novel The Quiet American? It's a vietnam war novel and there's a scene where the vietminh plant of bombs inside bicycle frame pumps throughout Saigon, and the french get word and place the bicycles in fountains before they explode .. maybe that's where all this paranoia comes from...

The Self-Absorbed Samaritan said...

Is this what they mean by a "New York state of mind"?

leroy said...

Podium!! Yes!!

What? Two days late? Oh dear.

Boy is my face red.

But I was waiting for the New York Times piece on the sequel to Scorcese's "Gangs of New York." It came out today. Take a look.

According to an interviewee, no one cares about messengers anymore. But bike culture is still not for sale.

It's in the Times so it has to be true.

Ride safe all. And no yelling at the Hasidim in the bike lane on Shabbos. That's just boorish.

CommieCanuck said...

as for CommieCanuck at 12:58, well he's f**ked isn't he! They're probably kicking his door in as I type.

Cuba is lovely this time of year.

CommieCanuck said...

Those bikes should have had a "this bike is not a pipe bomb" bike sticker on the frame.

Better, "In Case of Emergency, this bike is a pipe bong". Or, if crabon, a personal flotation device.

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fixie bikes said...

hope on wheels right?