Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Living Fierce: Unleashing your Personal Best

As much as I enjoyed my visit to Gothenburg, there is nothing quite as comforting as familiarity. I take solace in the predictable, and my life here in Uh-merica is just that. For example, I know that when I wake up in the morning, the sun will rise. I also know that this sun will shine on monkey feces, since my helper monkey, Vito, likes to relieve himself on my bedspread in the middle of the night. Mostly, though, I know that people in Portland, OR will continue to love beer and bikes, which is why this article on BikePortland should come as no surprise whatsoever:

Yes, it's well-known that putting a bunch of frames in any Portland establishment can double business overnight. This is not limited to bars, either. Even the Multnomah County Health Department is embracing the "put a bike on it" approach. Did you know that, because of low screening rates, less than 40% of colorectal cancers are found early? Well, by installing bike-themed colonoscopy stations all over the city they expect Portlanders will flock to have their colons examined with endoscopic tools fabricated by the city's top framebuilders. These stations will be staffed by United Bicycle Institute student volunteers:

(A UBI student inspects a patient's "bottom bracket" for polyps.)

When it comes to cancer, early (and artisanal) detection is they key to prevention.

Also, apparently Portlanders can't even get through a pint of organic beer or an order of organic french fries without being tempted to perform bike maintenance, which is why the BikeBar has "loaner tools:"

"Hold that thought--I really should service my hub bearings. Can you watch my organic seven-grain stout?"

But clearly the most important amenities are the "'Plug Out' exer-cycles that you can spin and generate electricity while you wait for your order." This is a stroke of genius on the part of the owners, since it simultaneously preys on Portlanders' compulsion to pedal bicycles at all times as well as their borderline pathological need to feel good about themselves, thereby ensuring that the establishment never has to pay a single utility bill. Now that's how you harness the power of smugness.

Meanwhile, when it comes to bicycle-themed entrepreneurship we New Yorkers are woefully behind. However, there is the odd flicker of brilliance, such as this Kickstarter pitch from a Brooklyn man for a bicycle "break" light:


Unfortunately, there are a few problems with this device. For one thing, as far as I can tell, the light only works when you use your brake, which means you're still cloaked in darkness in a non-braking situation. This dovetails into the second problem, which is that nobody uses brakes anymore anyway. If he invented some sort of tire that shoots sparks when you skid then perhaps he'd be on to something. As a bonus, such a tire would open the door for brakeless riders to immolate themselves should they attempt to skid in the vicinity of a fuel spill.

Still, I was inspired by his somewhat disjointed story about how he was inspired to invent the brake light, which is basically that he got into an altercation with a cyclist after nearly running the cyclist over. This reminds me of the Festivus origin story in its sheer negativity. Also, it should go without saying that the kid in the tie-dye is awesome:


His thumbs don't go down for two and a half minutes:


His visage is also nothing short of mezmerizing:

In fact, I haven't been so entranced since my encounter with the Nonplussed Journalist:


His gaze was so persuasive that, despite my initial skepticism, I'd somehow ended up pledging $20,000:

We also now have the exact same haircut, though for the life of me I can't remember going to the barber.

Speaking of brakelessness, a reader recently forwarded me this video of a "midnite crit" in our notion's carpital:

DC Midnite Crit from In The Crosshairs on Vimeo.

I'm always excited to watch a Nü-Fred on-the-bike slapfight, and I knew the competition was going to be fierce when I saw how much trouble some of the participants have with putting on their helmets:


While others forego helmets altogether and opt for the time-honored "windblown butt-cut" look:


The riders tear through corners at a moderate clip, making sure not to use their drops lest they inadvertently pick up speed:


As for the course, "It's about a 10-mile, 10-lap course...crit style, no one gets dropped:"

This explanation puzzled me for two reasons. Firstly, since when does "crit-style" mean no one gets dropped? I can assure you that people do get dropped in crits, and in fact I've been dropped in every single crit I've ever entered. Secondly, at almost no point in the video are any two riders anywhere near each other, which technically means that everybody got dropped--except for the winner, of course. Really, this is less a "crit" than it is a "hipster ITT."

Speaking of the winner, he gets a trophy, and then scowls like a man who knows just how badass it is to beat a bunch of people who don't know how to put on their helmets:

Like tying your own shoes or doing your own laundry, winning trophies is impressive when you're a young child but becomes less so with each passing year. However, in the hipster community all of these feats are sources of great pride until you're well into your 30s. In fact, some say winning a trophy in no-drop crit is the first step to becoming a GNC fixie model, as forwarded to me by a fellow Tweeterer:


Fixie crits may be the new triathlon.

101 comments:

Anonymous said...

one

Anonymous said...

two

Anonymous said...

three

Anonymous said...

four

Anonymous said...

five

Anonymous said...

six

Anonymous said...

seven

Anonymous said...

eight

Anonymous said...

nine

Anonymous said...

ten

Anonymous said...

I DID IT!~!!!!!!!!!!!

Mike said...

Welcome back, Snob. We missed you.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

No comment.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Caught it in the first minute posted, and finished 13th! Shit, this has gotten hard!

Pebes said...

by the way, now that i've completed "the ten" all you haters may commence sucking my balls.

Astroluc said...

technically in the top ten of first posters... sort of

Matty Hammers said...

Insuring?

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Warm that steel up first please.

Indy Falconheads said...

In all fairness, HUB makes some very tasty beer.

crosspalms said...

I love the address of that BikeBar, between Shaver and Failing. Isn't that pretty much where we all are?
Nice job, anon/Pebes!

I am not a big crank engine said...

No body commented on the size of those cranks on that recumbent from yesterday. That was truly beefy and awesome. Those swedes must have some damn impressive legs.

Ditka is god by the way, stupid to even ask.

crosspalms said...

oh, and shoes, tying your own shoes (typo)

ant1 said...

ant1st!

Anonymous said...

Uh-merica? Uh-Meh-rica!

JONESIE MCJONES said...

BUTT CUTT

mikeweb said...

At a full 7 minutes 50 seconds, that 'break' light video is about 7 minutes 20 seconds too long.

Also, all the fiscal conservatives here will be happy to know that New York State is now $190 closer to balancing the budget after my visit to DMV traffic court today.

eliot said...

My god, that kid is the spitting image of Anton Chigurh.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Thats not hair it's a helment made of chocolate.

hillbilly said...

CRIT DROP

Anonymous said...

Thanks mr. snob.

I've nothing against "unofficial" races, I've do a handful each season; it's a great way to practice and can be lots of fun.

That said, folk who take part in these and get agro about it should try a real race.

Bike races are hard.

Marcel Da Chump said...

I like whiskey. Straight no chaser. But I wouldn't mix alcohol with bicycles.

portlandanonymous said...

alotta portland coverage...starting to become "BSPDX", aren't we?

have you moved yet?

Fingerbang Assistant said...

"...now that's how you harness the power of smugness." BRAVO Snobby! You're Lob's gift to blogging!

Kenny Banya said...

Wow, 10 miles x 10 laps is about a 100 mile crit, without hydration or nutrition, and nobody gets dropped. Kenny is impressed.

Anonymous said...

Great post, almost as good as yesterday.

Here's a question: did this blog reach a new milestone yesterday with the addition of racist trolls?


balls.

xyxax said...

@crosspalms:

+1

Anonymous Coward said...

I hope the kid from the kickstarter video started talking with his thumbs, "Red Rum," indeed Mrs. Torrence.

Jonah Gibson said...

Bike themed colonoscopy ads entirely appropriate as the procedure is just like having a bicycle shoved up your bum, only with anesthesia, so actually more comfortable than having to ride an endoscope designed by Tomás de Torquemada (as many modern bicycles seem to be). Still, last time I had one done they found cancer. Had 14 inches of southbound pipe removed. Still walking around, so probably worth the discomfort.

JustPotatoes said...

I distinctly heard some "woo hoos" in that video, but they were nowhere near 46 mph. Novices.

TheInternationalBambooConsortium said...

did not have time to read the entire blog... any stories on calfee bamoo bicycles?

BTW, we are now selling our new laterally stiff yet vertically compliant tube set (both straight and variable-butted) for well under 5 times the price of the titanium tubeset from 7 Cycles.

Hungry panda said...

I'll take two

itown said...

I was wondering when you were going to comment on those GNC adds in the last 3 issues of Bicycling Magazine... The first time I saw them I knew they would come up here!

Twistyface said...

"Live fierce" guy look slike he is about to warm up his fixie-themed bagpipes and give his 'men only' sewing circle a rousing blast of "flower of Scotland"...

His expression says that he knows he'll never make it as a model unless he gets one of those mock-pageboy haircuts.

weimarpoo said...

That kid totally had the lego-man hair cut!

Anonymous said...

ASSCLOWN

Twistyface said...

Is the "Assclown" an evil version of Ronald McDonald? Sounds creepy.

Anonymous said...

forty seven

Anonymous said...

fordy ate

Anonymous said...

@Twistyface

You know the 'official' flower of Scotland is the Thistle. Seems appropriate for the land of kilts.

Anonymous said...

@Twistyface

Slap a red wig on GNC boy and you got your evil Ronald right there.

ce said...

It's all well and good for you Uhmehrickans to Live Fierce on your bicycles, but not everyone in the world is afforded those same freedoms. In the repressive police state of New South Wales, Australia where I live, the road rules state that you are not allowed to ride your bicycle "furiously":

245–1 NSW rule: riding a bicycle negligently, furiously or recklessly
(cf RRR, cl 96A)
(1) The rider of a bicycle must not ride the bicycle:
(a) negligently, or
(b) furiously, or
(c) recklessly.
Maximum penalty: 20 penalty units.

Salty and Sore said...

I did my laundry!!

Though, I must be woefully behind. Apparently the new thing is getting your picture taken, portaging 'the steed', while doing your laundry. Doh!

Oh well. The Fremont Fair and Solstice Parade is coming up this weekend in Seattle, including the annual (and original) naked bike rider....uh.. free for all. Time to start greasing up one's eyes.

Stupid Name said...

"road rules state that you are not allowed to ride your bicycle "furiously""

Can somebody please define "furiously"

It mus have a different meaning down under, like "driving mad drunk"

crosspalms said...

@Salty & Sore
Watch out for those flesh mobs, I hear they can be dangerous.

Anonymous said...

Eagerly awaiting LiveSnob's cutting commentary on Lance and Tyler's encounter, has Bazaarvoice sent out the talking points yet?

gsport george said...

The bicycle brake light is a fantastic idea... It must be, why else would a Google search for "Bicycle brake light" get so many results including multiple patents and actual products for sale at knock down prices. The fact that you never see anyone using one and everyone you ask about the idea says "no thanks" should be no deterrent to this intrepid inventor and his poorly disguised medieval playmobile friend...

Barfly said...

It ain't Portland, but it is Oregon...http://cyclepub.com/... and definitely out-smugs Bike Bar on Williams.

Jasper said...

To my eyes, Live Fierce guy is either Prince Harry or Mark Renshaw - I could never tell them apart anyway, but I doubt that the prince has abs like that.

grog said...

fiddy nein

rural 14 said...

ant 2nd!

Anonymous said...

let's see you actually win a trophy in a bike race before you dis too hard...

http://techcrown.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/Lance-Armstrong-Alberto-Contador.jpg

bikesgonewild said...

...so, billy joel is building bike brake (break) lights in his basement these days ???...wow...

...& speaking of 'a new york state of mind', mikeweb, i'm sorry to see that you basically got kicked in the teeth by the ny dmv traffic court...

...you take the time to show up in court & still get nailed $190 for a bicycle related offense ???...

...sounds like somebody's 'agenda' is still in place...

ervgopwr said...

Live Fierce or live farce. Fixy model for GNC?

We've got a real live hulk riding our velodrome that would tear this fiercester a new one.

Anonymous said...

Salty & sore:

I'm confused. Why do you need to do your laundry BEFORE the naked bike ride?

Erudite A-Hole said...

Can't anyone use adverbs anymore? I read Snobby for his excellent writing as well as the counter-smug punching he does so well.

Live Fiercely, por favor, not Fierce.

mikeweb said...

@bgw,

And I wasn't even riding 'furiously'. Though it was January in NYC, so I was riding fur-facedly.

Not Lance said...

Live Strongly, too

Matthew said...

"It's about a 10-mile, 10-lap course...crit style, no one gets dropped"

Facepalm.

Also, Rammstein without the vocals sounds weird.

Anonymous said...

I imagine Prince Valiant looked just like that when he was a boy.

Anonymous said...

I say that the tie-dye kid is a few short years away from this:

http://imgur.com/ZBzGD.jpg

J Scott. Ner to return. said...

"Hungry Panda....Said..'I'll take two!"

I've never laughed so hard in my life.

-J. Scott (uber.douche)

David said...

So, the bike bar has frames-only on display, lest a Portlander who's had one too many try to actually ride?

Anonymous said...

Panties!

Vegas said...

NOTA CRIT
BIKE RBAR
COLO CNCR
KICK STRT
HLMT HAIR
LIVF IERC

FUBA MBOO

David said...

The GNC ad shows why I'm afraid to set foot in a GNC, much less buy anything there. Is he portaging that bike or giving it foreplay?

Anonymous said...

Pogeybait!

Anonymous said...

Pogeybait!

urchin said...

Live fiercely, so that others may fiercely live.

leroy said...

I don't mean to brag, but my gastroenterologist says I'm quite an asshole.

g-roc said...

7:50 of that kids hair was about 5 minutes too epic for me. I lost interest around the same time he did. The lack of thumbs up created a simultaneous lack of lustre in his hair.

Oh, and I believe in DC that is the proper way to rock a helment.

PJ DC said...

the winner won a pretty sweet messenger bag i'm pretty sure that's why he was excited. unfortuneately he has been placing first at most alleycats here (and some road races too) and hopefully i can change that up soon haha. as for the helmet, sorry i didn't have it on right my hair is a COMPLETE mess as you can see. cxhairs put on a really good street race COURIERCROSS (which chris also won) that was pretty sweet. i really wish more people came out to the crit though... hopefully there will be more!!

PJ DC said...

i guess it is "bike snob"... seriously after seeing that video i really need to get a new helmet because i dont want to cut my hair. i badly want a teardrop-shaped TT helmet that i can wear every day. my head is too big for most helmets as is, but really my hair is sooo messed up right now

Anonymous said...

(mostly because of the helmet)

Jacques Strappe said...

As Dan Hicks of 'HotLicks' fame said ...


"How can I miss You if You Won't Go Away?'

Tyler's Chimera said...

So Tyler Hamilton and Lance Armstrong meet in a Colorado Bar. A fist fight ensues.

Who Wins?




ANSWER: The Guy with the BEST DOPE!

Rupert Murdoch said...

By the way, corporations don't pay taxes. We pass them on to the consumer,(you) who can't pass them on to someone else. Please try to remember this the next time you tell the government to tax me more to pay for your health insurance. Hey, it's your money.

xyxax said...

Too late, but breaklite boy reminded me of someone and it just came to me: Little Milton from the album cover of "Thick as a Brick".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:JethroTullThickAsABrick.jpg

Anonymous said...

Wow, guy from New South Wales is right
http://www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/viewtop/inforce/subordleg+179+2008+cd+0+N/?autoquery=(Content%3D((%22riding%20a%20bicycle%20negligently,%20furiously%20or%20recklessly%22)))%20AND%20((Type%3D%22act%22%20AND%20Repealed%3D%22N%22)%20OR%20(Type%3D%22subordleg%22%20AND%20Repealed%3D%22N%22))&dq=Document%20Types%3D%22Acts,%20Regs%22,%20Exact%20Phrase%3D%22riding%20a%20bicycle%20negligently,%20furiously%20or%20recklessly%22,%20Search%20In%3D%22Text%22&fullquery=(((%22riding%20a%20bicycle%20negligently,%20furiously%20or%20recklessly%22)))

jacky jan said...

I love the address of that BikeBar, between Shaver and Failing. Also, all the fiscal conservatives here will be happy to know that New York State is now $190 closer to balancing the budget after my visit to DMV traffic court today.

Anonymous said...

white people in DC suck. Like Brooklyn only not trendy.

Hack Facebook said...

The post is really nice.

Marcel Da Chump said...

@XYXAX,
you're on the money. My memory was bugging me over that one.

yogisurf said...

Ohhhhh the camera is on ME...I better get out of the saddle and make it look like I'm trying. The 2nd place guy want to share some Funndies with the winner.

Tapper said...

hey BikeSnob...have you seen the CyclePub in Bend (just south of Portland along the Fleece Highway)

http://www.cyclepub.com/

sit at a bar on a bike and ride around town drinking microbrews getting blasted. Healthy and fun!

Why, Lob... Why? said...

When it comes to cancer, early (and artisanal) detection is they key to prevention.

Really? Is they?

CAMPIONE CYCLES CALGARY said...

Isn't a "fixie crit" a scratch race?

CXHairs said...

Honored to be a part of the fun. http://www.cxhairs.com/2011/06/17/a-rite-of-passage-skewered-by-bikesnobnyc/

James said...

Why does the "fierce" GNC/fixie guy have road clipless pedals? Performance parts are totally out of theme for fierce riding.

Anonymous said...

That's okay, we'll just tax your income, Rupes.

Mass market item manufactury will employ more of the madding crowds than luxury yacht manufacture and even all-you-can-eat $1000 gold-leaf-encrusted desserts.

Read all about it in those Econ 2 classes you missed.

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Fixie Bikes said...

Why would parents ever give a kid such a terrible haircut?! D: