Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Blackouts and Black Buttes: Offline and Off the Grid

As you may have noticed, certain popular Inter Net webbing sites are participating in a "blackout" today. The purpose of this blackout is to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act, or "SOPA." For example, if you go to Craigslist to buy a crappy used bike or get ripped off while trying to rent an apartment, you'll find this:



Or if you go to Wikipedia to gaze upon the raw essence of male sexuality that is Nonplussed Bib Shorts Model Guy:


You'll find this:

Though if you go to Kim Jong-Il Looking at Things, you'll still find this:

Unless you're actually in North Korea, in which case your "computer" is just a state-run newspaper taped to a cardboard box.

Needless to say, operators of webbing sites do not like SOPA, because while it is ostensibly designed to protect copyright holders, it could also hinder free speech as well as the sort of user-generated content that makes the Internet so simultaneously wonderful and awful. Imagine, for example, a world without videos of people "bombing hills" on their fixies to stupid songs for which they did not receive the proper clearances, or even a world without crappy bike blogs that make fun of the aforementioned videos. It would be a living heck. You'd hate it. In fact, you'd hate it so much you'd move to another world instead, like Narnia, or Hogwarts, or the idealized version of Brooklyn in which the Huxtables lived.

I too do not like the idea of SOPA, but despite tremendous pressure on me to join the blackout (well, one guy emailed me) I will not be doing so. This is for two reasons: 1) It would be disingenuous of me, because even though I'm against SOPA in principle the truth is I really don't know nearly as much about it as I should; and B) When Wikipedia participates in a blackout, millions of people take notice, but when this blog takes part in a blackout the 19 people who read it and already know way more about SOPA than I do just see me for the douchebag I am. Given this, it seems to me that it makes way more sense to leave the blog switch on the "on" position so that people can alternately leave intelligent SOPA-related comments from which we can all learn, and/or gratuitously post the word "scranus."

Of course, one argument in favor of SOPA is that the entertainment industry backs it. The Motion Picture Association of America says that piracy costs the business of show billions of dollars a year. This is a great tragedy, because without that money studios and producers couldn't give Will Smith $20 million to star in "Men In Black III," a movie that has already cost something like $215 million (about half of what Congress spends on all of public broadcasting) and isn't even finished yet. Yes, life without incessant sequels and insipid comic book movies that cost hundreds of millions of dollars to produce is just too nightmarish to contemplate. Plus, we should also remember that piracy supposedly costs the entertainment industry jobs, since apparently there's no way to budget for a film that allows the star to have a $9,000 a month trailer as well a $25,000 a month apartment around the corner from that trailer without also firing a few PAs that earn annually what Will Smith spends on lunch. Therefore Congress really should help these people with some bespoke legislation that ensures us the constant stream of shitty entertainment we all deserve. (Maybe they can plaster Big Bird with product placement while they're at it.)

Anyway, I doubt SOPA and PIPI and Pipi Longstocking and all the rest of them will get very far in the long run, since I've just had word that the Best Made Company has joined the blackout. However, they won't actually be blacking out their site. Instead, they're offering customers this $375 hand-stitched artisanal blindfold:

Just slip it over your face and--voilĂ !--instant blackout. It's also handy for generally living in a state of ostrich-like denial. For example, if you ever find yourself in an unattractive, non-minimalist environment where you're surrounded by ugly people (such as a hospital or a Walmart), you can just slip it on and imagine yourself in a rustic luxury "cabin" in the "wilderness" eating pancakes drenched with designer maple syrup and looking at framed maps of places that haven't existed for a hundred years.

Moving on, yesterday I mentioned Gene Hackman's bicycle "accident" (it's cute when they call getting rammed by a car an "accident"), which prompted a reader to leave the following comment:

Bogusboy said...

Is it, perhaps, just barely possible that Gene Hackman is not an accomplished cyclist and was, in fact, riding like a geriatric Fred?

JANUARY 17, 2012 9:02 PM

It certainly is eminently possible. However, another reader has forwarded me actual video evidence that Mr. Hackman in fact has crazy mad tight sick bike-handling skillzzz:



Though if that's what Hackman was doing when the pickup truck hit him I suppose we could say that he bears some responsibility for the incident.

Speaking of cabins (as I was a bit earlier) I also received an email from yet another reader informing me that cabin porn is the new bike porn and directing me to the following site, which was indeed full of some of the filthiest cabin porn I've ever seen:

That's the kind of porn that sends fans of the "Americana backwoods revival" straight to the outhouse for some hot and frenzied "whittling" sessions. Seriously, that's full frontal cabin porn--you can see the whole derned woodpile for Lob's sake:

(Exposed woodpiles are the "beaver shot" of cabin porn.)

I think I even see a solar panel, which is of course the cabin porn equivalent of a "tramp stamp," and I won't even address the fact that this cabin is in a place called "Black Butte." There's even bike-on-cabin porn on freecabinporn.com, though frankly it leaves a lot to be desired:

Unless of course you're into bikes with step-through frames and missing front wheels "getting it on" with storage sheds. After all, who am I to judge?

Lastly, from cabin porn to portage porn, from a reader in Austin comes this action shot of a rider portaging a couple of big rods and a nonplussed pussy:



If the rider is also en route to a cabin then I may have hit the jackpot.

152 comments:

mikeweb said...

Whoopsie

Anonymous said...

██████████████████████████████████████████████████████████

(and podium)

Ed said...

podium

Jeff N. said...

Top fizzy!

Anonymous said...

fourth?

Anonymous said...

damit

Anonymous said...

ant1st blows goats

Kenny Banya said...

Best Made is blacked out?! Wow! SOPA is doomed!

Anonymous said...

top 10

Kenny Banya said...

Gold mikeweb, GOLD!

JB said...

Early doors!

hillier99 said...

Top 11, but non-plussed.

hillier99 said...

Top 11, but non-plussed.

Anonymous said...

Panties!

Anonymous said...

Early panties!

Anonymous said...

Blackout panties

mikeweb said...

Yeah Popeye! THAT'S how to deal with salmoning beautiful Godzillas!

Note: though there was a full 7 minute gap between 1st and 2nd on today's podium, I deny using a Gruber assist to blow apart the breakaway 18K from the finish. That was the EPO, with a SOPA chaser.

Also note: after commenting, I went to read the blog post as opposed to 'podium pissing'. Nobody likes a podium pisser. OK, some people like podium pissers, but please put on a Rapha branded incontinence undergarment first. Thank you.

Will Smith said...

The green-eyed monster of jealousy is almost as scary-funny as the aliens in my movies!

mcheung said...

wooo I was mentioned! as the aforementioned "tremendous pressure" on your pants yabbies. ███ ██ ███████ ████.

JB said...

Big rods, a pussy, no helment, flip-flops, and a cigarette. Where's the blue-tooth earpiece?

crosspalms said...

JB
I think the Bluetooth earpiece is attached to the non-plussed pussy's pink sweater. Or maybe it's just blacked out.

OldPortMemories said...

That's not an easy thing to train a cat for the shoulder ride.
Many years ago there a man in the good Portland who would ride a bicycle with a calico cat on his shoulder.
Awesome.

mr. Wookie said...

wacked out with the blackout

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Arrrrrrr... That's a dandy double eye patch for online pirates!

Anonymous said...

Scranus!

Jasper said...

@JB - hey that's my line, but hell, I didn't wake up fast enough today.

LooseCannonMuthafucker said...

My job got quit yesterday.
Awesome misunderstanding.
Now I have wide open vistas of opportunity before as opposed to a life draining rail commute.
I hate you MBTA and I know the feeling is mutual.

Anonymous said...

This SOPA's a DOPA.

Buffalo Bill said...

gratuitous scranus post

Bill Smith said...

Instead of blacking out the site, how about starting the post with a Fred wearing a blindfold?

libertyonbikes! said...

Mid pack cat 4.

g-roc said...

Without the ability to check my facts on Wikipedia, I say the following with complete lack of credibility and great trepidation of North Korean repercussions, but I'm pretty sure that's a picture of Kim Jong-un looking at something. But then, without Wikipedia, I could have totally messed up the spelling, or for that fact, the entire name. In fact, Kim Jong-il may have still been alive on January 9th according to the North Korean calendar. I may never know as I'll have totally lost interest in this by the time Wikipedia is back on line tomorrow.

leroy said...

Arrrr matey, them scurvy government dogs best be refraining from messing with Big Bird.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

This post brought to you by the letter... Arrrr

Marcel Da Chump said...

Some SOPA with your lunch?

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0112/71567.html

Anonymous said...

G S P
R C O
A R S
T A T
U N
I U
T S
U
S

Anonymous said...

Last night, as I walked home in the freezing rain (because, in the far north where I live there are no buses, so "If it rains ice, walk"), I wondered about the passions I might have.
Now, 12 hours later, I still don't know.

Paul Bowen said...

I've seen two fixie-hipsters this week riding with the heel of the hand on the top of the bar and the fingers wrapped under the curved part. Is it the fashion? Looks hella uncomfortable.

The King of Park Slope said...

Ahem ... scranus ... there, I did it.

Dr. Feelgood said...

SOPA my scranus.

le Correcteur said...

Good post; but you set the bar really high yesterday, Snob.

Anonymous said...

Best Made's new video...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zey8567bcg

Anonymous said...

In the early part of the last century it was said, "At all costs, save the banks."

But what economist today would say, "At all costs, save the investment firms"?

These two entities are essentially, profoundly different. Todays GS is not your grandparents S&L.

Wait a minute.
WTF?
Wrong blog.
Nevermind.

Anonymous said...

So, I searched for "vagina" on Wikipedia. It went to the page, and I saw a picture of a spread inner labia. Just as I was growing erect it went to the blackout.

There should be an occupy Hollywood. Unemployed people can seek to protest and disrupt the industry. In the end, we can hope for equitable pay and publicity for all people, not just piece of shit entertainers.

Amega said...

It's cat guy! That guy, and his cat are kind of jerks.

Anonymous said...

Give rodgirl some credit; her cat seems into it, and her forks are not backward

TEXA SCAT

Anonymous said...

Ach, wikipedia isn't admissible as an academic source anyway.

Blind...blind...blindblindblindblindblind (fold)

(does he have a bike?)

hey nonny mouse

Buy-cycle said...

Hipster me says 'Pssh, i knew about SOPA before it was cool'. Top fiddy?

g-roc said...

Anon 12:42, now that's probably something I'll remember to check on Wikipedia tomorrow. Preparing for disappointment.

grog said...

Again no Recumbabe

MISS BABE
CATS RULE
DOGS DRUL
SOPA CRAP

McFly said...

I had a vision in a dream in an epiphony that you would use the word "ostensibly" today, I feel so damn validated right now that I may rare back in my WORK chair, spread my legs and pollute my Dickies with unbridled hot karl joy.

Anonymous said...

I had to learn the following without the benefit of Wikipedia.

The famous Florida Keys Overseas Highway was recently awarded one of the highest honors a roadway can receive. It was dubbed an “All-American” Road.

Once, while passing through US airspace on the way between one socialist paradise and another, I gazed down in wonder at that road. All-American indeed: what other nation builds a road into the middle of an ocean?

Land of the free. With luck, speech will remain as unrestricted as the ability to build a road to anywhere.

Ride on America.

Scranus.

Anonymous said...

Come on, Man! Get to the shed porn. What is this, some kind of poetry club?

ArtVango said...

Doodles.
Yeah.
Doodles.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I always liked Gene Hackman's work. Now I think he's super awesome.

Will Smith not so much.

Jizzy Jeff said...

Just as I suspected, Hollywood players (the 1%) think the 99% are jealous of them...human nature on both sides. But the level of greed it takes to put their interests before the common good is heiniously deplorable. So what? They're shameless and they know it.

Tommy said...

So I've worked as a mechanic in the "Bike Industry" for almost 10 years now. And I've been reading this blog for about 1 year all-but daily. Not looking for attention or being sarcastic when I say... Thank you Mr. Rock Machine, for letting me know the cynicism cycling has instilled in me is O.K. and that the simultaneous hatred of 'hilpsters' and 'Freds' is not just something in my own mind. And that companies that market $12,000 bikes that say McClaren on them but are actually made in Taiwan (McCraren?) and 'Boutique Brands' who claim to be somehow better or more unique, make custom Titanium commuter bikes for lawyers with a 3 mile commute to the office, all for the same price, are just two sides of the same retarded coin. --Thank you. No joke, you give me hope for the future of this sport. Looking forward to your new book too by the way!

Esteemed Commenter DaddoOne said...

I was debating who was the bigger Douche - Romney or Smith when I decided it was whoever was responsible for this

Esteemed Commenter DaddoOne said...

Tommy,

Come back when you read DAILY

Anonymous said...

scranus!

brett said...

Butte is pronounced like Beaut

Anonymous said...

Twas peace I sought
For all in life was naught

My girlfriend went astray
the MAN had pennies to pay

ne'er had been so much despair
mine estate not assuaged by prayer

of a cabin did I dream
making my own butter and cream

Reality doth crush my hopes
Cabin porn replaceth my mopes

Anonymous said...

Nonplussed pussy is the best kind.

it's all about pace said...

why do you hate Will Smith?

Burn Hollywood, Burn said...

One of my favorite sites, This Isn't Happiness, is blacked out because the Will Smith's of the world can't stand to lose 1¢.

Anonymous said...

brett,
U a moran.
That is all

Tommy said...

DaddoOne,
You sir, are not a douche at all.

Ok, THAT time I was using sarcasm. ;)

That comment was some well deserved praise for Snob, and had nothing to do with you. In fact I pride myself on that being my first (and after this one here) ONLY comment I plan to post here. Because unlike you, I know when to respectfully keep my mouth shut. Good day to you.

Cycles of revolt said...

Just like the French Revolution corrected the excesses of a corrupt, delusional aristocracy, the second American Revolution Will depose our insane, narcissistic Hollywood monster. We created it and we'll destroy it.

Esteemed Commenter DaddoOne said...

Tommy,

good - keep it shut - humor escapes you

good day to...never mind

Stacey said...

Thanks for letting Wikipedia take one for the team, buddy.

I've read your blog for a few years now and I do want to let you know I appreciate the fact that you finally wrote something about Wikipedia other than just posting the picture of that guy in bibs.

Dooth said...

Tommy, the esteemed commenter daddo one was just playfully busting your chops...a N.Y thing...you coulda reciprocated in kind without the malice.

Anonymous said...

scranus

Anonymous said...

GRAN FOND
SOLD OUT!

fred fondo
volunteers needed
post-ride foil packet drifts along route guaranteed,
along with some teeth, crabon fibre chunks, and lots
of air cannisters
EPIC FRED

John T. Angle said...

Blackout with your sack out.

Quilled and Lugged said...

+1 to the Dooth...

@ Esteemed Commenter DaddoOne, as we always used to say, fuck 'em if they can't take a joke.

Fred said...

Out of respect for the blackout, I'm not posting any comments today.

bikesgonewild said...

...for some inexplicable reason, i hungered for mexican soup for lunch today...

Roger Daltrey said...

@Tommy, Can you here me?

Anonymous said...

Also, in the background of that cabin porn shot is a peak named Three-Fingered Jack

Henry Gibson said...

A poem

I passed a turd
It looked like a bird
Oh my word
That's just absurd

Carlos said...

Chill guys, I think Tommy just missed the humor part upon first read, probably gets it now. No big.

Gene Hackman said...

Who the hell is he to question my mad skills?

screaming skull said...

you da man! Gene!

Anonymous said...

You know what pisses me off?

When they slip a COTTAGE into a CABIN porn site.

Come the EFF on, man!

AllFeelsSameInDark said...

That's like when they try and sneak a korean girl into my japanese porn.

Like a round eye don't know.

JDH said...

Hackman's the shiznits.

JDH said...

Oh yeah, 87th.

Anonymous said...

"Tramp Stamp" is so passe'.
We now refer to that little accessory to whoredom as the "Alabama License Plate".

Ben Levy said...

That cabin porn deal was hilarious. How do you come up with this stuff? You could write another book on just your side related views of life with the incidental bike relations just like this cabin porn bit.

Anonymous said...

< humor escapes you >

I thought, "Missing a "u", perhaps?" and then remembered - two nations divided by a common language. (excused)

However,

"Tommy, Can you here me?"

fails on both spelling and use of capitals.....

hey nonny mouse

Anonymous said...

Beaut is pronounced like "gofuckyourself".

Anonymous said...

refusing to blackout my douchiness.



....aaaaand scene.

Anonymous said...

in australia, instead of celebrities getting hit by cars we have celebrities hitting cyclists and then hitting the twitterer about it!

Warniegate....

http://www.cyclingtipsblog.com/2012/01/cyclist-versus-warnie-the-cyclists-story/

Warnie is an australian cricketing legend. He once bowled mike gatting from around his legs. He's now better known for being engaged to Liz Hurley, texting (probably while driving) and laser hair treatment.

I'm sure he'd have an awesome wikipedia page.

Siri says.. said...

"gofuckyourself" is pronounced, "I respect you."

Breaux Chien said...

Weed?

Dieselday.

Ralph (pronounced Rafe) said...

The Rapha model is the very picture

of non-plussitude.

Mikeybicycle said...

Well at least 96 of us read your drivel. I and my artisinal cat Leonitas Tom Cruise Murphy are glad you stayed the course and blessed us with another insightful glimpse into the life cycling.

Mikeybicycle said...

Well at least 96 of us read your drivel. I and my artisinal cat Leonitas Tom Cruise Murphy are glad you stayed the course and blessed us with another insightful glimpse into the life cycling.

Mikeybicycle said...

Well at least 96 of us read your drivel. I and my artisinal cat Leonitas Tom Cruise Murphy are glad you stayed the course and blessed us with another insightful glimpse into the life cycling.

LateNightExcitement said...

One HUNDO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

LateNightExcitement said...

Wait if Mikeybicycle inadvertently triple posted then I'm not really the One HUNDO!!!!!!!!!.
Unless of course it's just aboot the number and not the number in relation to content.

Lyin' Abe said...

Cabin sex must be off the hook.

Sinyard Liberation Army said...

I imagine Specialized supports SOPA/PIPA because they wouldn't want their hard earned 'intellectual property' being ripped off by the bastid Chinee...

Oh wait-- you mean Specialized already steals others' ideas?

And all their DOGSHIT bikes and accessories are already made in China?

At least there's still Rapha, and Rapha Cock Tattoos.

g-roc said...

Mikeybicycle - if you factor in multiple posts and that all the anonymous posts and "Name" posts are the same guy in Deluth, I'm not sure that all 19 readers even read today's post. 96. pfftt. In Snobby's dreams.

Anonymous said...

scranus

g-roc said...

... or was that Duluth? Without Wikipedia, we'll never know.

Anonymous said...

SOPA - scranus

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

Don't forget nipples.

Pete Townsend said...

Daltrey was stoned on Wednesday weed. Thus the bad spelling. Not to mention singing

Anonymous said...

scranus?

ce said...

Snob, you missed the perfect excuse for another day off! I wish I had an excuse to take the day off. I actually work in the hut porn industry. I'm serious, just yesterday I was fluffing a hut out in the wilderness, tending to the wood pile and taming the bush. It's what I get paid for.

I suppose I should just do my job and shut the fuck up.

Regarding manifestos, I found the Unabomber manifesto to be an interesting read, but Dr. Seuss's "Oh, the Places You'll Go" was the closest I found to a manifesto I would adopt as my own. That was, until I saw the video rendition . Now I'm a little confused, surely the cross section of upstanding citizenry captured in the video are not the type who would knowingly flaunt copyright law?

Anonymous said...

What does this have to do with Janet Jackson's nipple?

Anonymous said...

Anon from yesterday.
Is Leonard Sinyard a Steely Dan cover band?
Is so I might be your guy.
Ex porn industry.
Have great rhythm spanking asses.
Also spread cream cheese on a bagel rather well.

Anonymous said...

DULL OOTH

BLAK BUTE

grog said...

Happy Tommy: Does this bus go to Duluth?
Gruff Driver: No, this bus goes beep-beep.

THAN KYOU
HERE ALWK

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Anonymous said...

sorry to report that the beaver shot is extinct. the few brazilians out there do not count. everyone else is kojaked.

helena said...

This cruiser is what happens when you mix a classical-styled bicycle with a vibrant color pallet Hermosa Beach.
womens beach cruiser

helena said...

California Bikes This cruiser also has a forward pedaling desigen, meaning the pedals are shifted four inches forward to allow for better leg extension and more open and comfortable seating postiion.
cruiser bikes

lindsey larson said...

this is a far better way to black out the world around you: http://www.studio-kg.com/ostrich/

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OMR said...

Lovely shoes ! It's perfect for the summer

http://www.xtraorbit.com/1366.html

john said...

The guy in the one piece looks familiar, must have been somewhere on the internet.

john said...

The guy in the one piece looks familiar, must have been somewhere on the internet.

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