Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Big Budgets: Round and Round the Hamster Wheel

Like most people, I have an Internet browsing routine.  First, I get drunk off Bartles & Jaymes wine coolers, which I acquired a taste for in middle school.  (Wine coolers were invented to hook children and were the alcoholic energy drinks of the 1980s.)  Then, I fire up my web-enabled Apple Newton, at which point I desperately seek out folding bike porn until I pass out on the fire escape.

By the way, nobody does hardcore folding bike porn like the Dutch.

Anyway, last night I was on something like my ninth pomegranate raspberry when I discovered that the publication formerly known as VeloNews was looking for a managing editor:


This surprised me, since last I heard everybody was leaving and the staff had been reduced to basically this:



That wheel spins up nice.  I bet the bearings are ceramic.

In any case, I swore off working when I became a bike blogger, and in the ensuing years I've degraded into something that is not only completely unemployable but is also perennially unshaven and exudes a strange aroma during certain hours of the day.  Even a bedraggled outfit like VeloNews would surely never hire me, since I look and act like something that might transmit lice to the other hamsters.  However, by this point Old Man Bartles and Old Man Jaymes were at the helm (just as they were in high school when I applied to SUNY) and once I saw how easy the qualifications were I figured I'd try to land myself a job:

In addition, the ideal candidate is intimately familiar with acronyms/abbreviations such as UCI, USAC, ASO, WADA, NCCA, IMBA, HRM, LBS, TT, KPH, OTB, JRA and, of course, DFL.


That's easy, here goes:

UCI: United Cheese Institute
USAC: United Society for the Appreciation of Cheese
ASO: American Society Organization
WADA: Washing A Dirty Arse (British Internet slang)
NCCA: National Cheese Cheese Association
IMBA: IMBA!?!  Damn Near Killed Her!!!
HRM: Her Royal Majesty
LBS: [Abbreviation for pounds]
TT: Tea Time
KPH: Koala Pals Humping (Australian Internet slang)
OTB: Off Track Betting
JRA: Jewish Riflery Association (the world's smallest shooting club)
DFL: Dorky Fred Loser

Obviously I got through that one all right, but the next one was tricky:

The ideal candidate will be able to spell names like Frischknecht, Maaskant and Vinokourov from memory.

Fortunately, not only can I spell those names from memory, but I can also type them with my eyes closed:

Frisheyndeicht
Maskcant
Vinoculator

Emboldened by success, I was on to the next hurdle:

The ideal candidate can list off every winner of the last 20 Tours de France.

Now, I may have been drunk, but not so drunk that I wasn't able to spot a trick question a flamme rouge away.  As any pro cycling pundit worth his suitcase of bad metaphors knows, due to the decades of doping scandals, subsequent disqualifications, unsuccessful appeals to the CAS (that's the Cheese Appeal Society), and so forth, the winner of every Tour de France for the last 60 years is now officially Walter Diggelmann:


When Diggelmann finished 50th in the 1952 Tour de France, he surely wouldn't have dreamed that he'd one day be elevated to the status of winningest rider in Tour de France history--winninger even than Lance Armstrong, Miguel Indurain, Bernard Hinault, and unfrozen caveman bike racer Eddy Merckx, shown here in the famous Molteni orange:



("Back in the day," Merckx cut a striking figure atop the podium.)

Anyway, having nailed the last qualification, the next one was laughably easy:

The ideal candidate is able to fix a flat tire in under 10 minutes, using only tire levers and a mini-pump.

Puh-leeze.  I can do that, and so could Walter Diggelman:


As for the final qualification, in my case that was merely a formality:

One last thing — a sense of humor always helps.

Oh yeah, I have one of those.  Here's a knock-knock joke I just made up:

--Knock knock.
--Who's there?
--Walter?
--Walter who?
--Walter Diggelman.

I only hope they'll pay my relocation expenses to Boulder, where I plan to move to "The Peleton," which became my dream home ever since I first learned about it:


Looks like the developers at "The Peleton" could have used a better managing editor.

Speaking of cycling publications, I was reading Bicycling magazine's "Buyer's Guide" in the bathroom recently when I noticed some interesting items.  First, there was the "Cane Creek Angleset Headset:"


About which the magazine had this to say:


"Properly installed, it performs flawlessly, with only occasional creaks."

The only time it's acceptable to say something performs flawlessly with only occasional creaks is when you're referring to the sexual prowess of Mario Cipollini:


("Properly installed, the Cipollini performs flawlessly, with only occasional creaks.")

It's not his fault if the bed frame is a little creaky--though the excess hair oil usually quiets things down after a few minutes.

Next, I noticed the "Industry 9 I25 Wheelset:"


Which is apparently not a race wheel:

"Add in the feathery weight, and these look an awful lot like race wheels.  And they could be, but they also have a 23.5mm rim, setting the tire beads farther apart and creating a larger-than-normal tire volume.  The result allows lower pressures for better damping of road vibration from an otherwise stiff, race-worthy wheel."

If an $1,000 pair of wheels with a total of like eight spokes is not a race wheelset, then what is a race wheelset now?  So I went over to Competitive Cyclist, where I learned that if you want race wheels in 2012 you have to get something like this:


These seem expensive at $3,600, but it won't be long before you want to upgrade to these:

Sure, $6,000 for a set of wheels may seem completely insane, but that's only because it is.  So is $1,750 for that matter, but apparently that's merely a "budget" race wheel now:


Privateer gear. This is something we discuss at length in mountain biking, but don't address enough on the road. Most of us sponsor ourselves. We need components that are practical; we need parts that are light, strong, and fast and that can do it all on a budget. This intersection on the component matrix is filled admirably by Reynolds with their Assault Carbon Clincher Wheelset.

Most of us do sponsor ourselves, and if this is the current state of affairs in cycling equipment then our sponsors really need to come to our senses and drop us immediately.  Plus, all of these crabon wheels will be obsolete even before they reach the end of their incredibly short service life, since the poor crabon rim braking performance is already forcing the move to disc brakes.  And, worst of all, due to the low spoke count you probably can't even use spoke cards:





I thought the spoke card had gone the way of the top tube pad (and the dinosaur for that matter), but at least one entrepreneur is using that to reduce the great cities of America (as well as Washington, DC and Chicago) to hunting grounds for hipster kitsch:

For the initial run, there will be five spokecards for each city. Each spokecard will have a theme, and guide you to four places around that theme that you can bike to. For example: The four best photobooths in Chicago, four under-appreciated monuments in Washington, DC, or four places to play Buck Hunter in Brooklyn, New York. In addition to that, if you go online, I'll have bike routes and additional tips for bike adventures on explorosaur.us!


Visiting Brooklyn to just to play Buck Hunter is like visiting Mario Cipollini for the conversation.

126 comments:

mikeweb said...

First Hanster

s said...

First loser!

Blog Drafter said...

Crafting the Artisanal Podium

singlespeedwaster said...

Podium!

Kenny said...

...AND THE LAW HAS BEEN PASSED, IT'S A BILL NO MORE!

Anonymous said...

bonjour!

Frank Bartles said...

Thank you for your support!

Anonymous Coward said...

Top Ten once again.

Jasper said...

Early doors

Anonymous said...

Friggin' impossible to fix a flat with just tyre levers and a mini pump.

You need a new tube or a patch kit, too.

Anonymous said...

The Pussy Wagon only stocks Boones Strawberry Hill.

Kenny Banya said...

IMBA USAC

theEel said...

weed.

Keith Earickson said...

I can't think of anything to say, doesn't everybody else build their own wheels out of wood? I weaved my own rim strips out of spare beard hairs.

Terre Haute Karl said...

The dude in the explorosaur video needs to practice more before making the video. It was really obvious that he was reading cue cards.

Blog Drafter said...

Haha...great post, lol, etc.

portland anonymous said...

top twenny?

Anonymous said...

Walt Diggelmann?

Wasn't he a porn star?

A bike porn star?

Get it? Get it?

I slay me.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Sun Country by the 2 litre. Nearly as good coming up as it was going down. Those were the days.

Anonymous said...

wooot

streepo said...

Knock, knock.

Anonymous said...

Still effing hating the new comments format.

Really now. Majorly even.

Sans serif, left justified fucking chaos it all is.

Arrrrgh!

leroy said...

My dog insists that the proper spelling is farshnoshket.

But what does he know? His scholarship is farblondjet, farpotshket and farchadat.

But I agree with his observation that you really need to put a Rapha kit on that hamster to simulate riding conditions.

mikeweb said...

The Brompton trailer guy was really chatting up that checkout girl, huh? I mean, he was hitting on her HARD.

It was sort of embarrassing to watch...

Other than that, I really enjoyed the dialogue in it though.

crosspalms said...

$3600 for wheels is Cosmic, all right. And $6000 is almost twice as Cosmic. Still too many spokes, though. I'll wait for the no-spoke wheels that are held together by mind control. They'll be owned by the kind of people who own Strads and lend them out to virtuosos.

Anonymous said...

gah, missed the podium. must've been my itchy scranus.

balls®

Anonymous said...

http://nycc.org/message-board/carbon-wheels-club-rides/54708

"I have been getting the itch to upgrade my wheels. I'm not sure, but I don't think I've seen many carbon wheels on SIG/club rides. Would you recommend against riding on carbon wheels for SIG/club rides and for training? Or do you guys just ride alloy wheels mostly and leave the carbon wheels for races?"

Anonymous said...

I went for a ride today with a friend. I enjoyed it a lot, but with $6000 wheels I'm pretty certain I would have hit cycling nirvana. Pinarello are opening up a dealership next to my work, I wonder if they'll accept a kidney?

Anonymous said...

Panties!

DerZoots said...

The videos were awesome!

I am listening to some Italo Disco and it was perfect for the folding bike and even better for the hamsters.
That fat little guy just kept on trying.

No Bonus This Year said...

Weed!
Second!

And panties!

Billy said...

I'm getting the shakes imagining just how poorly carbon wheels with rim brakes would hold up to a Boston winter. My alloy rim is dead after just three winters now.

Anyway, I always appreciate some dutch bike folding porn, so thanks for that.

Buy-cycle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Buy-cycle said...

Scranuses

wishiwasmerckx said...

Well the red Solo cup is the perfect receptacle,

and you, sir, do not have a pair of testicles

if you prefer to drink from glass...

a whiner from Oakland said...

"Assault" carbon wheels huh? Somehow these kind of names always bugged me.

"Crossfire," "Crosshairs" "Double cross" - cyclocross is especially guilty of dubiously named products.

Murder is this nations biggest fantasy.

Anonymous said...

Snobby - please provide us with a list of your favorite dutch folding bike porn sites. You mention them but don't list (tease). BTW - the best raleigh twenty site is http://raleightwenty.webs.com/.

Regards

cycle

Anonymous said...

Snobby - please provide us with a list of your favorite dutch folding bike porn sites. You mention them but don't list (tease). BTW - the best raleigh twenty site is http://raleightwenty.webs.com/.

Regards

cycle

wishiwasmerckx said...

I am passionate about helmet use in cycling.

Last weekend, I took to the slopes, and was surprised that at least 20% of the skiers now wear helmets. I consider this retarded. Sure, if you are skiing out-of-bounds, in the snowpark or in the trees. But if you are skiing in control on groomed slopes? What for? It's SNOW, for goodness sake.

I wear a helmet when I ride because streets are made of asphalt and cars are made of steel. If they were made of snow, I would abandon the helmet for cycling, too.

This apparent cognitive dissonance is causing me some distress.

Anonymous said...

The pan flute makes all the girlies get wet.

Anonymous said...

What may not define Dutch cycling according to last weeks wrong answer video but is clearly obvious is the absence of spandex, bike helmets and drop bars (and straight bars for that matter). In other words, no "Freds" or other speedsters. As such, a relative calm and order appears to prevail amongst dutch riders. How nice.

Anonymous said...

I had no idea riders used to race in ballet flat shoes. Did they have cabron insoles?

Anonymous said...

VELO SNUZ

wishiwasmerckx said...

Anon 1:44, if we rode 12 mph on upright townies around others who have ridden their whole lives on safe bike paths like the Dutch in that video, I would forego a helmet as well.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Anon 1:47, I have been around long enough that I still have a pair of those "ballet flat" cycling shoes in my garage.

They were held in place by a small cleat on the bottom with a slot for the back edge of the pedal cage. That and toeclips with Alfredo Binda toestraps.

Look, a ski-binding manufacturer, was the first to come up with clipless pedals, and the rest, as they say, is history...

Buffalo Bill said...

I can't figure out how to fix a flat using only a pump and levers, without using either a patch kit or a spare tube. If you can do it, you deserve the job.

devink said...

budget race wheelz haha

Marcel Da Chump said...

Velo Snob.

deleted comment said...

The author was removed by the content.

Shram said...

Snobby, please tell us you're applying for the job and will be moving to Boulder.

Anonymous said...

wishiwasmerx,

sounds like you've never skied at >5 miles perhour, or gotten off the green runs. Or, collided with another skier or rider. and what bass-ackwards resort only sees 20% of the people wearing helmets? In CO it's more like 95.

Cat6 champion said...

"Most of us do sponsor ourselves..."

Get with the program.

Here's my Kickstarter project: "When I ride my bicycle, I come across people with expensive wheels. I want to subvert that paradigm by getting my own expensive wheels and ironically half-wheeling everyone I come across. Video footage will of course be posted on Vimeo."

Lightweight Obermayers, come to papa.

GhostOfTyrone said...

You're under-rating Buck Hunter.

Anonymous said...

I'm going to go watch some Dutch bike porn and sponsor myself, or whatever the kids are calling it these days.




balls™

Anonymous said...

Dutch checkout girl.

Hot

ce said...

KPH! I'm surprised and a little disappointed that no reference to wanking was made where you wrote "Most of us do sponsor ourselves...". Perhaps the parallels are self evident, but a big time editor would not let that opportunity pass.

Anonymous said...

Team Kit distro day most common comment...

"Just who is sponsoring who here?"

Second most common comment...

"SOOO, Gucci"

Third...

"Who the fuck designed this abortion?"

ce said...

Anon 2:20 got there before me.

Anonymous said...

If an $1,000 pair of wheels . . .

So I'm thinking "an thousand" must be some kind of snob affectation. Then I realize that you're probably writing "one thousand" and it's me who is reading "thousand".

I feel so much better now.

Jed said...

Wait till the unemployment office gets wind of your capricious atitude towards what may have been your ticket to financial independence. Santorum knows a snob when he sees one, and so sir, do I.

grog said...

Coffee out the nose today. Great post. But everything is better with Recumbabe.
Now I want my own hamsters.
Yes, in a tight spot, a float can be faxed with only a pimp. It involves tying a knog in the tuber at the scranus of the hole.
Do I get the job?

Paul Bowen said...

If he left his Brompton like that in London he'd be walking his groceries home.

Paul Bowen said...

If he left his Brompton like that in London he'd be walking his groceries home.

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to the new Blog once you get the Velo job.
#bike smug BCO

Udder said...

Hey Snobby, you should sell Bicycling Magazine that bridge that goes from Manhattan to Brooklyn, or at least, your wheelset.

Captain Hardbread said...

tell the Dutch Dude three items can be carried in your scranus, and he might have impressed the blonde in the parking lot with vito's lunch

Anonymous said...

wishiwasmerckx... my personal crash stats:

road riding: about 1 in 600 outings or about once per 1200+ hours of riding

mountain biking: about 1 in every 3 rides or about once per 6+ hours riding

skiing: about every 15 minutes or approximately 24 times a day

Cipo said...

eating pussy

DerZoots said...

@Paul double post Bowen

You double posted again.
Impatient man you are.

That is all.

Scranious

bikesgonewild said...

...mikeweb ftw !!!...

...(said quietly off to the side - "ummm, mr mcquaid...i hope you're gonna test this guy...i heard he's using hamster adrenals, so, i'm just sayin'...")...

Anonymous said...

You stumped me Velo: how do you generate the heat to melt one of the (hopefully plastic) tire levers into a makeshift patch?

McFly said...

So just when I thought the Dutch Folding Porn could not get any better there is a hot trio of seasoned GMILF bumbling around the Netherlandish streets in uber-cougar mode. Genius.

Anonymous said...

advise on career transitions welcomed. Send to Anonymous, 12:49. The mailbox is always empty, sigh.

mikeweb said...

"But Pat - um, Mr. McQuaid, sir. He's only jealous because he hasn't had a top 10 finish in, like, a whole week now. By the way, what ever happened to his B sample. Ah, I see... Oh, what's this? A form with your bank account and routing numbers? And what's that other number below, with all the zeroes..."

bikesgonewild said...

...hey, dammit...just play by the rules...

...either give him the check or get off the podium...

...that's all i'm sayin'...

bikesgonewild said...

...re: the hamster wheel...

...what did one hamster say to the other hamster ???...

..."dude, you are SO fucking up my training right now...just wait your turn"...

Quilled and Lugged said...

I might have had a gander at the Peloton website thing, but there was an ad for a Vengelicious right in the middle of the front page, and that kind of put me off. At least I hope it was an ad. Is there anything at all interesting in it?

Quilled and Lugged said...

@ bgw - a long lunch break on a rainy day in the Bay Area I see.

bikesgonewild said...

...quilled & lugged...nice to see a little rain & i'm sure you'd agree that we can't complain about riding conditions this winter, huh ???...

...of course, when we hit summer,the pundits are gonna be screaming "...drought, drought, drought..." & we're gonna constantly hear about 3 minute showers & don't flush unless necessary...

...during the big drought years ago, the catch phrase was "...if it's yellow, let it mellow...if it's brown, flush it down..."...

...true story...

misster-PISSTA said...

could not read for a few days due to prepration for group CX show tonight 29 feb,2012 at 111 minna sanfrancisco

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Actually, this is not quite true:
"Friggin' impossible to fix a flat with just tyre levers and a mini pump.

You need a new tube or a patch kit, too.

February 29, 2012 12:44 PM"

I once had two flats, used my spare tube, had no patches, and was stuck. Dug deep into the memory banks and came up with the fact that you can tie a tight knot in the tube where the hole is and carry on. Makes for a bumpy ride, and I doubt it would get you a podium finish, but it beats the hell out of walking home.

Anonymous said...

"apparent cognitive dissonance"? I don't know what that means. Actually I do, but it's more fun to pretend I don't. BTW, I'm wearing my lacy panties today, which only makes me miss the serifs that used to adorn my inane comments the more. Serifs are like the lacy panties peeking out from under the letters' short shorts.

Quilled and Lugged said...

@bgw - as long as it doesn't rain on Sundays. Some years it seemed to only rain on Sundays at this time of year.

Anonymous said...

Your muzzer was a hamster, and your fazzer smelt of elderberries!

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

...that is an 'lol' but it's kinda true...

...it honestly is like that some years - nice during the week & funky on the weekends when people wanted to ride/play...

...ps...new google blogger format is constantly screwing up...sheesh...

Albuterol Clentador said...

Ufff...hoy entrenamiento muy,muy duro y rapido,vaya dolor de piernas!Pero dia para recordar,bati mi record en el puerto donde hago los test.

McFly said...

I rode to Paris Landing State Park at Kentucky Lake yesterday afternoon....in shorts....in February...and got HOT. The End.

g-roc said...

Wow, those Industry 9s had me confused. The only rim width dimension that ever carried any relevance to me was the inside bead. It had me convinced those were MTB rims. Couldn't figure WTF they were talking about. But now I see. 23.5 is the outside measurement. Not sure why I would want to know that. #gettingmygeekon

Комментарий удален said...

Этот комментарий был удален Путин. Я убить меня.

Quilled and Lugged said...

@bgw, yeah, blame the tools, it will make you feel better (insert inane smiley face here)

McFly said...

groc,
I have the greatest set of aero rims (hoops) known to roadkind. Behold, the MATRIX ISO-CII. 30 sweet MM of wind cheating technology manufactured in good ol' Waterloo.

DerZoots said...

Ha ha ha,
Yeah and in Waterloo 700c = 702c.

Weed.

McFly said...

Waterloo is an American-Indian name for Bidet.

zoomer said...

Weed panties!

Anonymous said...

I know it is not right to analyze folding bike porn, but I could help but to notice that the rider just waltzed into the supermarket without locking his bike. If that was Brooklyn, that'd be one unhappy Dutchman on the way out.....

DerZoots said...

I don't get why he needed a bike trailer/shopping cart for a bag of crackers and a cucumber. He could ride home with the small bag in one hand and the cucumber down his pants like any normal person would.

Scranties.

Anonymous said...

Looks over shoulder...

Anonymous said...

Crashes!

bikesgonewild said...

...@комментарий удален...
... Вы не будете смеяться, если Путин посылает "плохое настроение" эскадронов смерти для вас, да???...

...просто говорю'...

bikesgonewild said...

...@quilled & lugged...speaking of tools, i don't wanna suggest i could do with a new laptop but i regularly employ a ball peen hammer, a cold chisel & a monkey wrench to keep this baby runnin'...

bikesgonewild said...

...no joke...i just caught the national news...if any of our regulars or their friends or family live in any of the areas devastated by tornadoes today, my heart goes out to those folks...

...shocking stuff...

Anonymous said...

cipollini is little onions, y´know that?

Anonymous said...

a deep waaaahahahahaha to you replacement horse snob.

Cheap race wheels waaaahhehahahe

visiting just for the conversation waaahahahahehhhe

spoke cards & tube pads wahahahahehe

Ru Pual has the greatest laugh! Watch the tube of her/him!!! guzzle it whole!!

ce said...

cock blocked

ce said...

WHAT THE HELL ARE THESE THINGS!!!???

McFly said...

Ce,
Fixters do not understand the concept of ANY cable.

Anonymous said...

dinosaurs aren´t awesome, they are terrible. have you ever seen a komodo dragon, the little brother of t.rex, rip up something like a deer? just horrible!

DerZoots said...

How much cash does a jacked up low end bar/stem set fetch on the craigs list anyway?
Definitely not enough to get a proper cable cutter but enough to get janky red street tires for a mountain bike it would seem.

J Mertz said...

If I change my name to Anastasia, do I automatically become a worthless dumb ass who can't hold a camera, or even remember what I want to sell so that I have to read off of q-cards...or does it take practice to be a dumb ass?

don the cyclist said...

This comment has been authored by the remover

Derf said...

Scranusaurous Explorer.

Derf said...

Scranusaurous Explorer.

jachmilli said...

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Anonymous said...

nice opinion.. thanks for sharing....

Nationwide Auto Loan said...

I can't think of anything to say, doesn't everybody else develop their own tires out of wood? I woven my own rim pieces out of extra hairs hair.

OMR said...

Lovely shoes ! It's perfect for the summer

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

jachmilli said...

Beach cruiser prices have escalated to an outrageous price these last few years and together the founders realized there had to be a way to make things more affordable.

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The2GirlsTaechSex.com said...

Well, Kinda lovely hamster wheel indeed.

sri said...

wonderful site it is .. so great definitionBike Trailer

Robert said...

Dude, those hamsters are so cute. Much cuter than a bike.

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