Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Oregon Manifest Destiny: Dare to Dream

Back in the "Olden Days," settlers loaded up covered wagons and headed west in search of land, gold, and fortune. Very often, these settlers were Polish rabbis, and along the way they would befriend wily bandits with hearts of gold. Then, comedy high jinx would ensue--or at least that's what I was led to believe by Ken Burns in his acclaimed documentary about westward expansion entitled "The Frisco Kid:"

(Amazingly, in 1979 someone thought this movie was a good idea.)

Today, however, "Manifest Destiny" manifests itself rather differently. Basically, the way it works is that people from the East Coast who are way into bikes decide to "light out" for Portland and live out their most absurdly velo-tastic fantasies. However, in the absence of a modern-day equivalent of the Homestead Act, they must instead turn to Kickstarter:

This person is going to find himself rather disillusioned when he arrives in Portland and finds there are already at least twenty mobile bike shop-slash-rolling dance parties already operating. Indeed, it's time to face the prospect that Portland is about to become "biked out." Soon, destitue framebuilders will wander the streets, offering their services to random pedestrians, who more often than not will also turn out to be destitute framebuilders. In fact, some estimates have it that by 2015, one in three Portlanders will be full-time framebuilders, and one in four will have received some sort of award from the NAHBS. Really, the city needs to put some kind of cap on transplants or the whole "bike culture" bubble is going to explode in a hail of lugs and tattered "shants." Unfortunately though the city will probably not take the necessary action, because when Portanders read "put a cap on the 'bike culture'" all they can think of is this:

Handmade cycling caps are to Portland what kippot are to Ocean Parkway. If you've never visited, I can confirm that they actually put a cycling cap on your head when you deplane at PDX. This is why the garment is also sometimes referred to as a "Portland lei."

None of this is to say that anybody who is compelled to embark upon a Search for Self should not heed that inner voice--it's just that in Portland the make-believe bike job market is already saturated, so you might want to look elsewhere. For example, there's always Boulder:


Given the current state of the economy, there's something almost touching about a person who wants you to give him money so he can film himself drawing, climbing, and riding bikes:

I am creating a video about utilizing bicycles as transportation to "project" rock climbs near Boulder, Colorado. The title, "The Backyard Project," takes on two meanings: the first, and most obvious, is the verb "project" or the act of rehearsing the movement on a challenging rock climb until one climbs the route without falling. The second definition, and the goal of this video, reflects the merging of climbing, biking, music, and art into a collaborative, multimedia "project."

It's vital that you support him in this, because climbing is the source of his artistic inspiration:

I strive to emphasize the intimate, expressionistic sides of climbing and to illustrate this artistic lifestyle through its nuances: the preparation of food and gear, anticipation of the climb, ambient noise, existential experiences, and heightened senses; all of which contribute to my use of climbing for artistic inspiration.

Yes, as long as he can keep climbing, he will remain inspired to make more videos of himself climbing, and he can live the rest of his life in a constant feedback loop of sustainable self-indulgence. All you have to do in order to make this possible is hold an actual job and give him your money. He may even pluck out a lovely tune for you on his spokulele:

Not all Kickstarter campaigns are self-indulgent though, and some have highly practical applications for the cockpit enthusiast:



I suppose if you can't actually have this guy stand next to your bicycle scaring the holy crap out of everybody who comes near it, then buying his Leatherlock security system is the next best thing:

Because nothing confuses a thief like a series of elastic bands.

Speaking of dreams and the current state of the economy, just because money's tight doesn't mean you should give up on your dream of building up that sweet frame you've got lying around. Sure, bicycle components can be expensive, but every so often a complete build kit comes up on Craigslist for a price that's nearly too good to be true, and that's when the wise shopper knows to pounce. Here's one such opportunity:

Nimble Crosswind Trispoke wheel, Shimano Airlines, Brooks titanium - $350 (Midtown)
Date: 2011-10-11, 2:33AM EDT
Reply to: [deleted]

Nimble Crosswind Carbon Tri Spoke Front Wheel (with tire and wheelbag) $350

Shimano Airlines (New In Box) Rare air powered shifting system $650

Brooks Swift Titanium railed leather saddle $200 Antique Wooden grips $65


If you want to turn heads in Williamsburg or whatever your local equivalent is, just roll up on a bike equipped with a crabon front wheel, a Brooks saddle, "vintage" wooden grips, and the finest (and, I'm reasonably certain, the only) air-powered shifting system ever made. For maximum effect, simply replace the stock Shimano Airlines canister with an air horn--that way you'll produce a delightfully shocking blast of sound whenever you change gears. Or, if neither are available, there's also a popular (and delicious) "kludge" that involves Easy Cheese.

And if Craigslist isn't your can of squeeze cheese, you can always "hit up" your local "swap meet." However, to get the best deal you may need to compete with shrewd Mennonites, as in this photo which was taken by a reader last year at Trexlertown:

'Twas never a Trek the subject of such intense contemplation:

My guess is that, as a member of a highly capable, frugal, and self-sufficient community, she ultimately determined she could make the entire thing herself in about 25 minutes and walked away.

Lastly, yesterday I mentioned the unrivaled rigidity of a beehive bottom bracket, but on a mountain bike all that stiffness is useless if you don't also have a suitably "beefy" fork crown. That's why you need one with BNT, or "Bird's Nest Technology," as spotted recently by another reader:


Crabon weave has nothing on bird's nest weave.

110 comments:

keanu said...

woah

g said...

race is on!

Anonymous said...

Podium?

Kenny said...

AND THAT'S HOW A BILL BECOMES A LAW!

DogShot said...

1st bird's nest.

Anonymous said...

Podium

Nogocyclist said...

At Last!

wishiwasmerckx said...

8th again for two straight days?

theEel said...

topteneel!

Ed said...

Top Ten

Anonymous said...

Finally Snob!

grog said...

and the babe?

Anonymous said...

back to 11

cyle

PK said...

What happened?

Anonymous said...

BIRD NEST

mikeweb said...

Uh, Bu-bye Birdy.

Buy-cycle said...

Top 20. Late. T-boned by an antelope

bikesgonewild said...

...i looked over wishiwasmerckx's shoulder for the answers...

...turns out there's no quiz today...

..."...i could a' been a contenda..."...

Anonymous said...

TOP TWENNNNNNNNNNNNNNTEEEEEEEENTH!!!
[and thou readeth thine blog].

OBA said...

Worth the wait today...

Anonymous said...

TOP TWENNNNNNNNNNNNNNTEEEEEEEENTH!!!
[and thou readeth thine blog].

GhostOfTyrone said...

... the longest anyone has ever looked at a Mongoose...

crosspalms said...

And here I thought "The Frisky Kid" was Ken Burns' biodramedy about BGW...

If you use a propane tank instead of air on that Shimano thing, can you turn the derailleurs into flamethrowers?

Anonymous said...

Sweet Lob! Turns out I am wearing the same shirt as the climber/freeloader guy.

Spooky.

And all the people said "A-meh!"

Boulder Lothario said...

I strive to emphasize the intimate, expressionistic sides of fucking and to illustrate this artistic lifestyle through its nuances: the preparation of food and gear, anticipation of the fuck, ambient noise, existential experiences, and heightened senses; all of which contribute to my use of fucking for artistic inspiration.

Neil said...

that bird nest is a trap. you can't trust a mongoose.

Anonymous said...

Late because of performance enhanced tuesday sex

Easton Heights Blogger said...

the Amish chick is local; they live in Maxatawny just down the road from Trexlertown.

The Elder Farkus said...

Ah jus popped my tart lookin at that.

Anonymous said...

Oh well,
Nobody seem to care about my comment yesterday linking to the video about this guy being hit by a buck while racing in South Africa.

Nobody here but The Guardian did like it, they even put the link on their front page today!

(and please excuse my english)

Anonymous said...

I need sex but I don't want the girl to fall in love (again).

Tell me Wilcat Rock Machine, what should I do ???

Anonymous said...

Just google map "Trexlertown" and you´ll see (by zooming in) that it really is a cyclist´s town..

Marcel Da Chump said...

The Backyard Project: yet another doucherism
for "fund my self-indulgence".

Anonymous said...

@ anonymous 2:14 PM

Are you me????

CommieCanuck said...

'tis a mighty bicycle, English, but all ye haters can suck my hand carved oak balls.

bikesgonewild said...

...crosspalms...as they say in the business - "...only the names have been changed to protect the innocent..."...

A Very Minor Amish Poet said...

It appears my third wife-to-be
lusts after old-fashioned steel.
Hmm, she could be the real deal.

CommieCanuck said...

If you use a propane tank instead of air on that Shimano thing, can you turn the derailleurs into flamethrowers?I'm sure some eurodouche on Weightweenies has hacked that thing with helium or hydrogen gas.
I refuse to ride anything that requires that I memorize Avogadro's number (which keeps changing because he's always late on rent).

CommieCanuck said...

She actually wasn't thinking of buying that Trek, she was just asking, "so this is what the sodomites prefer to ride?".

What's up with the sneakers? The Amish have an Asian division making Nikes? That's cheating.

Anonymous said...

Usually birds build nests in the forks of TREES. I guess any fork will do!

jno62 said...

The "buck" video was wild. It was also viral- 3 people sent me links.

I think the Amish gal is probably wondering if she can ride the trek with her skirt hiked up. Moral dilemmas.

CommieCanuck said...

Just google map "Trexlertown" and you´ll see (by zooming in) that it really is a cyclist´s town.

While your at it, take a look at Cockermouth, UK.

CommieCanuck said...

The best part of that buck video was the comment, "Welcome to Africa, rich white boy!".

PK said...

Mennonites = ultimate retro grouches?

JB said...

Mennonites =/= Amish.

Mennonites:Amish::Swingers:Baptists

crosspalms said...

Yesterday Amerigo, today Avogadro. As long as we have Avogadros, let's make guacamole.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

At least the climber guy has the good sense to rock a triple on his Surley. But I'm not paying to see him grunt his way up a mountain.

Now Boulder Lothario on the otherhand I might be persuaded to spend a buck or two to watch that video.

As a contribution to the arts of course.

bikesgonewild said...

...mennonite girl deeply contemplating a bicycle at a swap meet - "...so this is from whence it all began for my brother floyd...it looks to be a machine devised by devils & thus it brought him to the lowest of hells...woe be to you, oh seller of this demon steed..."...

...guy selling cool old bike at swapmeet - "...i wonder if these mennonite chicks put out ???...i wonder if she's wearing panties ???...jeez, she's makin' me horny...i'd like to plow her little furrow & plant my demon seed..."...

..americana...where old meets new...

Maxitawny Phil said...

Q: What is this?

Clop, clop,clop, BANG, clop,clop,clop?

A: A Mennonite drive-by shooting.

xyxax said...

Now that we've had the birds and the bees demonstration, I still don't understand how bikes reproduce.

Anonymous said...

Boy I wouldn't want to get nailed by a charging buck. A charging wildebeest, now that's another thing.

At least the crabon survived!

self-obsessed and sexee said...

Are there hot babes in Portland?
Is that a female in the bike cap?
I can't freakin' tell!

Anonymous said...

Oy Vey! Portland? Again? Jeebus, Snobster, low hanging fruit!

Etherhuffer said...

Amish, meh. Now Dukhubors, there are some real hotties.

Anonymous said...

I'd hit it!

dirtbagdetroit said...

even though the mongoose nest is empty, i'm sure one could easily get a goose egg if ridden as is...

TheTye said...

DüSH CLMR

hillbilly said...

Portland lei is frickin brilliant.

Anonymous said...

@ anonymous 2:14:

http://www.reverbnation.com/artist/song_details/10074047

Anonymous said...

Mr. Boulder climber whipped off Left Wing?

Sorry, I only donate to entrepreneurs who can send 10+ . If he were wearing his Flat Cap rather than that helment, I might make an exception.

jenna talia said...

glittertrashdetroit.tumblr.com

Anonymous said...

Unless I'm much mistaken, Ken Burns did not direct The Frisco Kid.

It was Luis Bunuel.

Or am I confusing him with Gerard Oury?

http://tinyurl.com/RebbeJacob

g-roc said...

@self-obsessed and sexee 2:46

Why, that's none other than little Blossom all growed up. She still plays an alleged woman on TV. IMDB it if I've lost you.

Leslie Wong said...

Besides making the leatherlock, it looks like Jason Winters also tries to steal gear from motorcycles. Is he trying to protect himself from himself?

Anonymous said...

6.02 x 10^23, as far as I remember.

hey nonny mouse

Anonymous said...

"Votre commentaire a été enregistré.
Cela peut prendre un moment avant que votre commentaire ne s'affiche sur le site à le message d'origine."

Why's it in French all of a sudden?

hey nonny mouse

Save teh Freds said...

methinks the Amish hussie is wondering whether steel, crabon or aluminum is best suited for those green jersey sprints between lovers during whatever that time is that all young Amish are encouraged to throw away their values and pursue hedonistic debauchery for a year or so.

Anonymous said...

I'm raising money so I can retire early from my wall street banker job. Working stresses me out and seriously represses my artistic impulses. Will anyone out there support me? I'll grow a beard? anyone...? I'm sure someone will be happy to replace my hugely disproportionate contribution to the U.S. tax system.

Jasper said...

Hey nonny mouse,
No doubt WCRM is outsourcing his comments to Canada in advance of a move west.

Y. Moon, deceased said...

No Sister Sprocket jokes yet?

Anonymous said...

"Project" in "The Backyard Project" is not a verb. What a prat.

Anonymous said...

Damn!

Even more dangerous than Australia...

http://thebrowser.com/videos/mountain-biker-gets-taken-out

cyclotourist said...

PROJ ECT$

self-obsessed and sexee said...

@g-roc

An alleged woman? My hormonal balance is restored. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Looks like Levi is supplementing his income again by selling old traning materials to Floyd's family.

Anonymous said...

A response from the rolling bike shop:http://rolling-wrench.com/wordpress/?p=214

Anonymous Coward said...

Isn't that Letle Viride Selling his wares to the Amish girl?

The Amish are so industrious, not like the shiftless Mennonites

I Go Around and Around said...

Those Mennonite women are sexy. Have you ever seen one work a butter churn? Pure sin it is. Pure sin.

But then, I like a woman with sinewy forearms and a good grip on the handlebars.

Is it going to rain in NYC? Again? Gdmt. I think those "Se Ocupa Wall Street" are doing the wrong sort of dancing.

West Van Rain Forest said...

Anon4:44 I thought I was the only one to see Levi Leipen heimer flogging his old chromoloy steed to yon tart of sooners.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Sexee, thanks for rescuing me from an existential crisis. When I first saw that picture, the pink hat and glasses suggested a woman. Then I saw the schnozz and the jawline, and began to doubt my ability to differentiate the male of our species from the female.

That is an important skill to possess inerrantly, lest you be condemned to spending the rest of your life cruising around on chickswithdicks.com.

self-obsessed and sexee said...

wiwm,
androgony is my second pet peeve.
My first is Anon 2:14's comment.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

BUTR CHRN

Nebraska bike commuter (non-DWI edition) said...

Never heard of those Airlines. I think I got out of the business about the right time.

Anonymous said...

I don't believe there is a reason in the world I would send that guy in "Posh" Boulder a dime to continue living his dream, whilst I must bust my ass to barely survive where I'm living now. Boulder is ridiculous expensive and filled with twits.

Mein muder said...

anon 4;24? What point are you trying to project? Ah.

Anonymous said...

I don't know, John Wayne. Is this me?

Buffalo Bill said...

We all need to have more existential experiences, why should I pay someone else to have one for me?

JDH said...

T-town has a velodrome. And Mennonite hotties. She can leave her bonnet on.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the "fat cyclist" water bottles is what caught her attention.... I can just hear her thinking... "fat" and a "cyclist" only the English.

George McFly said...

*** Manifest Density ***

Anonymous said...

Red Hartebeest: a reason why you should always wear your helment

Bears Watching said...

WIWM @ 5:55

You may be onto something there. if you look closely at the folds in her dress she appears to be giving us a "Podium Salute"

Or, it could be I've been staring at the folds in her dress too long.

Anonymous said...

Man,
Fatcylist is a sad personnage.

The guy just can't stop plugging brands.

Plus, he goes on and on about his weight but he keeps drinking Mountain Dews, eating donuts, sausages and Subway sandwiches.

Then, about once a week, he asks people to donate money for cancer.

Come on, look in the mirror douchebag!


(now I feel better; I think I should stop reading his blog but I keep going. Masochist I guess)

wp said...

whoohoo, snobbie is back!!!



this ghostwriting by Vito had gotten tedious and unfunny.



so says my helper ferret Ricky.


or just being afk for a 1/2 a week has clouded mine judgement.

nope. no, that's not it. it's this here bottle of wine. it certainly is.

Southern Wildfish Massacre

wp said...

next i'll read them there comments

leroy said...

Anon 8:51 --

You remind me of the guy who wrote:

"The maximum level of suffer you have experienced on the bike equals having to skip a nice juicy dinner isn't it?"

You should meet Dr. L, you guys would hit off.

(Now I feel better ... even tho' Humor Analysis Deficiency Disorder is no joking matter ... as anyone who's been HADD can tell you.)

96?

Some Random Quaker said...

Mennonites are just Amish hipsters.

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

99...

(I may need to borrow BGW's ellipses if this lead out goes any longer)

....

Anonymous said...

Hey, I think that Red Hartebeest is with the NYPD.

bikesgonewild said...

...are you talkin' to me ???...

...100 what, anyway ???...

ken e. said...

subtract point one and it's 101.9 (fm)
in vancouver, british columbia, canada.

C.I. T.R.

fitzcarraldo is so not going to fit on knuckle tattoos.

Anonymous said...

You can buy artisanal organic butter based chamoix cream in Amish country

Anonymous said...

Now we know why Yehuda Moon shut down - they're making a live-action version!

CommieCanuck said...

No doubt WCRM is outsourcing his comments to Canada in advance of a move west.
Canadian migrant commentors.
Jeeess seniorita, the Snob from New Jork, he say jes!

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Fixie Bikes said...

It WAS a good movie idea!

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