Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Out of the Loop: Basking in Victory, Basting in Oil

Until a couple of weeks ago I was traveling extensively in order to promote my second book, "Smilla's Sense of Snow."  If you've ever had to travel for work, you know how stressful it can be.  I, on the other hand, have no idea how stressful it can be, because I don't have a real job.  Instead, traveling for a non-job means I've officially lost my grasp on the few remaining tethers that anchored me to the semblance of a respectable existence, and I now float aimlessly through life like a distracted zeppelin.  Grooming, for example, is but a memory, and I now look and smell like a forgotten garment you might come across at the bottom of a long-neglected laundry hamper.  (Perhaps because that's where I've been finding my own outfits lately.  My philosophy is that if you can't remember the last time you wore it then it's technically clean.)  Concepts like "time" and "appointments" are now just meaningless constructs.  And I've also like totally lost track of the sport of professional bicycle cycling.

I certainly have no regrets when it comes to abandoning lame stuff like "haircuts" and "being on time," but I do lament the fact I haven't been following pro bi-keen.  In particular, I seem to have completely missed a hum-doozy of an Italian Giro, which I'm the last to learn was won by Rider Hejedal Ryder Heyjadahl Winonadal Ryder this guy:


Words can't adequately express how elated I am that this, the greatest of all the Italian Giro Tours, was won by an American cyclist from the United States of America.  That's why, in lieu of words, I prefer to convey my swollen sense of national pride by means of this video, which features a dead drug addict singing some song about a star-fangled bandana:



In retrospect, that sweatsuit was a desperate cry for help.  (As, arguably, are all sweatsuits.)

Anyway, this is a great moment in sporting history, and to find another American from the United States of American Giro of Italy winner you have to go all the way back to 1930 and Luigi Marchisio:


("Howdy, partner.")

A good ole boy from the Texas bayou, this Amish Shaker Mennonite parlayed a hardscrabble life as an Orchard Street kosher pushcart vendor during the waning days of the Wild West into a career as one of the finest professional cyclists the state of Philadelphia has ever produced.

Yes, they just don't make 'em like Luigi Marchisio anymore.  After him, they broke the mold--or, more accurately, they sold it to a factory in Taiwan and now use it to stamp out $10,000 clumps of plastic called "S-Works."

Meanwhile, in other Giro news that I missed but everybody else already knows about, a guy clad only in his underpants wound up with his very own Farnese Vini team bike:



The above video was forwarded to me by a reader, and from what I can see he was helping out with a wheel change:


After which the team car just drove off and left Underpants with the bike.

By the way, I shouldn't have to remind you what kind of bikes Farnese Vini ride:


(Cipollini showing his "O" face.)

It's a cosmic inevitability that if you wander around Italy wearing only your underpants, sooner or later you're going to end up alone with a Cipolli.

Speaking of Cipollini bikes, this is not just some sort of rubber-stamp branding exercise like so many other bike companies created by former pros.   No, Cipollini is so "hands-on" that most of his employees have already filed restraining orders, and his bikes use proprietary technology developed by "The Layin' King" himself.  For example, it's long been known that Mario Cipollini's profoundly oily complexion was a key factor in his speed, and that's why each Cipollini bike is lovingly hand-basted straight from the factory:


(After this come the breadcrumbs.)

I'm also assuming Cipollini himself came up with the corporate slogan:


("The Champion, The Power, His Tool")

Which he obviously "borrowed" from this:



Though it's certainly better than the second choice, which was "What's Italian, slathered in oil, and won't be there in the morning?"  And while we're on the subject of rhetorical questions, what's the complete opposite of a Mario Cipollini?



This is true for many reasons, not least of which being that David Byrne doesn't own a car, whereas Mario Cipollini not only owns a car but also does unspeakable things to passengers in its back seat.  Byrne is also highly unlikely to start his own crabon bicyle company, for, as he tells the New York Times, he much prefers the communal smugness of bike share:


As well as the "exhilaration" of in-line skating:

There’s an exhilaration you get from self-propelled transportation — skateboarding, in-line skating and walking as well as biking;

Incidentally, here's David Byrne Rollerblading:

 

This is a familiar sight on the West Side Greenway--or it would be if most people who encounter it aren't so horrified that they then leap into the Hudson River to their deaths.

Also, Byrne explains that New York's bike share program will be accessible to people of all races and income levels--but only by accident:

New York’s program will have some advantages over the Paris and London programs. New York’s high-rise housing projects are scattered throughout the city, so neither they nor their inhabitants will be excluded from the covered bike-share program area. The ugly tendency to segregate by race and class will be, in a small way, mitigated here. By bikes!

Really, this is a major issue here in New York.  Sure, we do our very best to only provide cycling amenities to the forces of gentrification, but the problem is that they're never all that far from the other people they recently displaced.

By far though my favorite part of this piece was the feeling of smug satisfaction I experienced when David Byrne actually used a term I created:

I rode down the protected bike lane on Ninth Avenue; it’s definitely a lot more relaxing to ride in these than it is to negotiate naked New York streets, though you do have to watch out for salmon-cyclists who ride against the flow of traffic.

Yep, that's right, I coined the expression "negotiate naked."

Speaking of being naked, do you feel that way if certain parts of your bicycle don't match certain other parts, or if they match other parts but not the right other parts?  Well, if you answered "Of course not" then you'll be as baffled by this item in the latest "Bicycling" as I was:


I was still trying to work out whether or not the above was satire when I read this at the bottom of the very same page and decided that it was:

"Two layers of bar tape at the end of each drop creates a tactile signal that alerts you when your hands are getting close to the end of the bar."

If you're the sort of rider who needs a "color code" and who depends on "tactile signals" to keep you from grabbing thin air instead of your handlebars, then you may want to give up cycling and explore the "exhilaration" of in-line skating instead.  Or, you could just get your bike "professionally assembled," like this one which was forwarded to me by a reader:





Giordano Libero Men's Road Bike - $400 (Potomac, Rockville, Bethesda, NIH)
Date: 2012-05-27, 9:56PM EDT
Reply to: [deleted]


100% Positive. No scratches. Brand New, professionally assembled 25-inch Men's Road Bike.
Test ride for 15 miles. Gear shifts smoothly.
Unfortunately, I'm moving back to California, so I must sell this recently bought bike soon.
Welling to negotiate a better price.



Scoff if you will, but it does adhere to the "color code" chart, which means it passes muster as far as "Bicycling" is concerned.

Of course, if this bicycle is too flashy for you, you could also get a more classic ride, like this one which was forwarded to me by another reader and is "made from parts:"



If your bike is made from anything, it should definitely be parts.

106 comments:

theEel said...

Weed!

JB said...

Hi

theEel said...

again?!?!

Dan said...

a lot of scrolling to get second

Dan said...

or fourth, dammit

Jimbo said...

Jeez!

Chriam said...

5th!

mikeweb said...

Fork you.

Anonymous said...

TOOOP TEEEN?

Anonymous said...

TOOOP TEEEN?

JonMack said...

Am I missing a joke here? Hesjedal is Canadian

Anonymous said...

12?

Captain Hardbread said...

I like recumebabe's parts

Anonymous said...

RYDER?! I BARELY KNOW 'ER!!!

McFly said...

So you are going to make a bike completely from scratch?

Step One: Create the universe....D'OH!

Anonymous said...

So get a job already.

Top twenty!

mikeweb said...

So, is Arm-strong Vancouver-ese for Armstrong?

Can anyone from America's 'Tennessee tophat' weigh in?

asshat said...

"just what you need, a nutter stand"

Dave said...

So David Byrne doesn't own a car?

JB said...

We're laughing at "professionally assembled" because the fork's on backward. Correct?

JB said...

Maybe it was assembled by professional union pipefitter.

Anonymous said...

It's salmoning all the time that bike.

Anonymous said...

My body is made from parts.

Big Charlie said...

Fine form today. All the Cipo-oiling must have relaxed you.

LOLed at the Underpants Bike guy. If I every get to see a Grand Tour, that will be the outfit of choice. You never know if it will earn you a bike.

The Byrne article was pretty good too.

Negogiating naked.

Anonymous said...

David Byrne does not own a car, he does also not own dignity.

Dennis Hopper said...

Oh man, snob, man! That was some high class shit, man! It blew my fucking mind, man!

Don't forget to put food on the Hoppers table.

Anonymous said...

Are you just trying to bait those in America's beaver cap?

http://ryderhesjedal.ca/news/racing-news/item/hesjedal-victory-does-canada-proud

mikeweb said...

anon 12:26 got it.

That professionally built bike-cycle is self salmoning, or is capable of auto salmonatio, scientifically speaking.

I'm guessing this is another trait of Cipo that is reflected in his bicycles.

singlespeedwaster said...

At the tail end of the top 30, pants are mandatory once again. I no longer feel free.

Buffalo Bill said...

Thanks for reminding me, I left my laundry in the washing machine. Just another benefit of reading this blog.

T said...

Looks like Cipollini has Louis CK working in his factory.

Tara said...

Also, I am pretty sure American Andy Hampsden won the Giro in 1988.

But kudos to our new Canadian overlord, Ryder Hesjedal

ken e. said...

yah ryder!

Invisible Man said...

Responding half-seriously (which I know isn't in the spirit of This Thing of Snob's) I just posted recently a blogpost about how it affected London's cycling culture that the rich and poor people all lived closed to each other: http://invisiblevisibleman.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/why-cyclist-should-write-londons.html . I'm about to move to New York, however, so I'll be delighted to see if I get to share bike paths with David Byrne despite not having a fabulous fortune from having written songs and sung them in an odd, staccato rhythm.

It's a criticism of London's bike share scheme that it's mostly the rich that use it. I don't personally find it that easy to tell people's income level as I cycle past them. But it's probably at least a partially valid criticism.

manifest destiny said...

No way is Ryder Canadian. Would he risk losing the Giro for a high-sticking penalty?

Anonymous said...

BIG SUIT
BIG SUIT
BIG SUIT

crosspalms said...

My bar tape and sidewalls match because they're both filthy. But the fork is facing the right way.

Paul Bowen said...

"It's a cosmic inevitability that if you wander around Italy wearing only your underpants, sooner or later you're going to end up alone with a Cipolli."

Marvellous.

Paul Bowen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Hmm... where else could I put two layers of tape to remind me that my hand is getting close to the end?

Paul Bowen said...

That bike could well have been professionally assembled. Note that the advertiser doesn't say what type of professional was involved - maybe s/he got a proctologist to do it?

Anonymous said...

imagine morgan freeman saying the following: titty sprinkles.

you're welcome.

balls®

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

SKBTFBC

(signature kevin bacon trailing front break caliper)

nice.

bikesgonewild said...

...just remember...ryder hesjedal is from the best part of the united states of america, the canadian part...

...& i didn't wish to be an alarmist & comment on bsnyc/rtms/wcrm's appearance when i saw him recently at the sf rapha bra but i thought it was a talk being given by charles manson or the unibomber guy, ted kaczynski...

Anonymous said...

That certainly cuts my wardrobe choices down when I visit Italy. Just underpants.

DerZoots said...

Hi bikesnob!
Thanks.

Goodbye.

bikesgonewild said...

...btw...you can't "...leap into the hudson river..." to your death right now...you'll just land on another distracted teary eyed ny rangers fan...

bikesgonewild said...

...few people are aware of this but that giordano libero is designed with the choice of 'normal handling' or the option of 'ultra quick steering'...

...the seller is obviously a serious cyclist being as he's chosen the latter option...

Jed said...

It doesn't take much effort to imagine what type of rider will mount himself on a cipo steed. I rather endure the aspirational shame of a scattante before a cipolinni.

Anonymous said...

Uh, is that fork on the professionally assembled Libero on backwards? That's some freakin' toe overlap if not...

Anonymous said...

Yep, hey, look at the brake caliper on that front fork on the Libero. Some "professional" who installed that cludge...

wishiwasmerckx said...

I am mortified to learn that my sidewalls are improper because they are the same color as the dominant color of my frame. I shall rush home at lunchtime to change them out immediately.

brandon cox said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

nice rack(?) in the last ad on eBay... whose safe hands are those?

Anonymous said...

Jobs that Snob would excel in:

Professional Peramubulator.

Editor of "real" bicycling books and journals.

Designer and builder of vertically stiff, horizontally compliant railroad trusses and bridges.

Davis Bryne's tailor.

Cippo's "houseboy".

These are just a few suggestions, I'm sure there are many more.

Anonymous said...

Apparently,

Being a famous musician and bike enthusiast qualifies one to evaluate bike programs.

It also must qualify one from repudiating the use of complete sentences: "by bike!" I know; it flows so well you'd think it is one but it isn't.

As a humble blog commenter, I feel so very unappreciated about my area of expertise, as well as my sense of humour.

Anonymous said...

I'm such a cheapskate that my bar tape is second-hand. But we are famous for that here....

hey nonny mouse

A. Hitler Geography Professor said...

Canada is located in North Amerika!

So every Canadian is really an Amerikan!

Comprende'?

Jefe said...

Did you just realize that yours is not the only satirical work in Bicycling? Must of the road bike reviews are written strictly for laughs.

Anonymous said...

That professionally assembled bike is a Unicycle with a training wheel.

Dave Stoller II said...

Yesterday while riding at a local park bike trail I noticed one of the Cinzano Team guys of 'Breaking Away' fame gaining on me. Just as he was about to thrust his 1970s vintage Campagnolo 18 inch hand pump into my spoke field I deftly kicked him in his male package zone.

I've seen the movie Cinzano dudes.

Your game is OVER!!!!

Anonymous said...

Jefe - I've suspected that for years. Bicycling exposed!

cycle

Marcel Da Chump said...

That David Byrne wiggle dance gave me an acid flashback.

kelly said...

O Canada! A Canadian wins the Giro and LA is playing for the Cup. O Canada!

Big Charlie said...

By the way, your in-depth (for you) coverage of the Giro got me thinking of your boondoggle to the Tour de France "reporting" you did a couple of years ago. Will this be repeated this year?

It seems we haven't seen much bicycle cycling contesting race-coursing coverage from you lately. Let's smarten up, OK? Or are you too busy "socially commentating"?

Anonymous said...

I may be way out of touch but isn't Cippy's bike a little short for him? His elbows cross mid thigh.

Anonymous said...

I may be way out of touch but isn't Cippy's bike a little short for him? His elbows cross mid thigh.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely hilarious. Glad to have you back, Snob.

Anonymous said...

RYDER is a native of VICTORIA British Columbia.

You cannot get much more Canadian than that; except maybe to pull the jersey over the other guys hockey helmet and start wailing on him.

Ryder RULES "nuff said". Ref: Thing

d. byrnes chauffer said...

Yes. It is true. david byrbe 'the unpretentious one' does not OWN a car.

He leases a 2012 Hisapno Souza Reebok 1200000 SLX XP RS TerraDouche'Plane. The most exclusive of exclusive automobiles in the entire universe.

When entering or exiting the automobile d. byrne wears only mens underpants. He does this so he won't be noticed by the everyday people in NYC. In this guise he just blends into the crowd.

d. just picked up an awesome team bike while visiting Italy. He plans on donating the bike the the 'Tilford Rebel Without A Clue Institute' so that cildren of Wall Street Bankers will always be assured of having a top of the line ride.

Dooth said...

Obvs, David Byrne reads this blog. Probs, he comments. Perhaps (prhps?), he commented to-day.

Anonymous said...

Snob, you should congratulate yourself on having penetrated David Byrne's cycling lexicon to the point where he is writing your brainchildren into the pages of the Gray Lady. Perhaps it was a coded message to you, pleading for you to not savage his piece? Next up, he'll release an album entitled AYHSMB filled with Afro-Cuban paeans to the Lobster God and Recumbabe on the cover.

McFly said...

Andy Hampsten is from America? I thought he was from Colorado....

Redundancy Dept of Redundancy said...

We have alot of Captian Obviouseseses on this blog commentary sections.

Anonymous said...

Every time I see Recumbabe in your post I have to touch one of my parts. Today it happened twice.

I think the HR lady is getting suspicious.

Davis Bryne said...

I have a tailor, thanks. Got any spellers?

Anonymous said...

Snob, lately this blog has been lacking in meaningful analysis of the social and economic implications of African in-migration in the Florida panhandle.

Anonymous said...

So you haven't followed professional bikeen lately. Join the club. Watching grass grow (or golf) is more exciting.

Ray Sexlight said...

Tactile taping is as dumb as inline gear indicators. You should know what gear you're in, you shifted it there. I mean, blind people get along just find without a visual aid. Maybe tactile taping is a blind thing.

Doug said...

Now here's an Epic burrito story.....http://www.calparks.org/stories/chipotle-loves-state-parks.html ...
Cippolini basting optional.

Captian Obvious said...

Ray,
I don't want to shoot holes in your theory but I do not think you can give blind people visual aids.

Anonymous said...

RELEASE ALL THE FARTS!!!



The window will not roll down, bitch we're gonna die.

Cat6 for Life said...

Sheesh! First the indignity of having David Byrne lay claim to having coined the phrase "douchenozzle". And then to read spurious lies claiming that Luigi Marchisio was a Giro winning cyclist from the state of Philadelphia, when virtually any sixth grader paying attention in class knows that he was an alternate skip for the Mexican National Curling Team. Let's get our facts straight, shall we?

The Park of Slope King said...

That bike was put on the front forks backwards.

Talking Anus' said...

you may ask yourself ...


how did I get this Look 695 IPACK continuous Fibre Zed2 Crank w/keo's & new HSC7 fork crammed up my rectum?

McFly said...

I agree with The Park, the fork is assembled correctly. The bars and frame are inverted. I cannot speak for the wheel but according to Bicycling Magazine(tm) you should be able to read the writing on the hub. But it would actually be backwards if you were on the seat, which is backwards. Dammit I need to reinstall that healment mirror.

Director/Producer Michael Rasmussen said...

****OPENING THIS WEEK****

'Weekend @ Recumbabe's II'

This first sequel in the hoped for 'Weekend @ Recumbabe's' trilogy just adds to the amazing capers of Hyler Tamilton, Uan Julrich and Lloyd Flandis as they blood dope and drug their way through a fun filled XXX 3D weekend at Recumbabe's beach house in the Hamptons culminating in the Douche' Bay to Montauk Rapha Professional Unicycle Enduro.

g-roc said...

Snob, don't worry about not being able to pronounce Ryder's last name. He's so far removed from his roots, no one in Norway is even capable of pronouncing it the way he does.

Great lob acolyte Ralph Palperson said...

Attn: Davis Byrne
May 29, 2012 4:51 PM

You must be new to the BSnyc blog comments section.

ALL MISPELLINGS ARE INTENTIONAL.

They are coded messages to the great all knowing and all seeing lob!

If I were you I'd be wearing several slices of lemon around my neck and liberally annointing me own self with copious amounts of 'drawn butter' for the next several weeks or so. I fear that you have incurred the wrath of the great lob.

Anonymous said...

F E N I T I K L E E

Davis Bryne said...

@Ralph Palperson

All my spellings are intentional, too, whether they are or not. But thanks for the Cipo-tini recipe, I can't wait to try it. Is is better with gin or vodka?

The Ghost of Frank Rizzo said...

As Governor of our fair state here in Canada's Preparation H receptacle, I hereby declare July 1 to be Ryder Hesjedal Day, and extend an invitation for him to be Grand Marshall of our Independence Day Parade.

PowerRobbingFlex said...

Kon-Tiki

Anonymous said...

How did you miss this in the latest Bicycling?

"I try to do intervals and structured portions of my workouts in a tailwind. Not only does this provide a mental boost, but sailing along at higher speed simulates the velocity and LEG PEED [sic] of racing in a group"

http://bicycling.com/blogs/ramblingman/2012/05/25/cheating-the-wind/

g-roc said...

Nice try Anon 11:11, AKA Bill Strickland, trying to drum up hits to the Bicycling website. Is this what it's come to?

Darrel Stamp said...

I have just come across your blog and think it's hilarious; will definitely be stopping by in the future! Great comment about your laundry...I too have employed this philosophy from time-to-time

Darrel buybikes247

Anonymous said...

Darrel...you seam sew sinseer....

Anonymous said...

Panties!

Anonymous said...

Panties!

David said...

Antipodes! (Think etymologically.)

running_on_ice said...

A little bit about bi-keen in Colombia. Written by some guy that's from the same country as the Giro winner. http://travelingtocolombia.com/category/cycling-colombia-blog/

grog said...

Chapter 102.
Great Babe in the morning!
As DB doesn't own a car, I don't own a recumbent, and have never been to the Babe's beach house.

amabel87654 said...

So what is the conclusion please??

Mikes,
2 Girls Teach Sex

Robert said...

So Italian biking is best kind of biking?

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