Thursday, November 1, 2012

Getting Around: As the Crowe Flies


(I guess I was a journalist for the two seconds it took me to snap this photo last night.)

Every now and then people send me messages electronically.  Sometimes these electronic messages contain a question.  Sometimes they even contain multiple questions.  Here's an excerpt from an electronic message containing multiple questions I recently received from a reader in Chicago:

In the wake of Sandy there's been a lot of coverage of the auto, subway and bus systems in New York. People are reported to be walking over bridges, sitting in traffic, and waiting for shuttle buses, among other things. I'm not surprised to find little coverage of people choosing to bike to work but that sure seems like a great alternative at the moment. Do you have any anecdotal information to share? Have you seen bike shops with lines out the door? Noticed a great deal more bikes on the streets?

These are all excellent questions--for a journalist.  Unfortunately, I'm a blogger and not a journalist.  Basically, the difference between a journalist and a blogger is that a journalist goes out into the world and investigates stuff, whereas a blogger merely reports from his own tiny bubble.  Yes, it's true that you can be a journalist who happens to report via blog, but I'm a pure blogger, which means the only place I really investigate is the recesses of my own posterior.  (Or, colloquially, I have my head up my ass at all times.)

Anyway, not only do I report exclusively from my own tiny bubble (or my own ass, now that I've mixed metaphors it's getting difficult to keep track), but in these post-Sandy days my bubble/ass has shrunk considerably.  This is because I'm really only making trips that are necessary, and any pressing business I had elsewhere in the city has been postponed for the time being.  Moreover, the woman I tricked into marrying me can't go to work because there's still no power in her office, and my two year old child doesn't even have a job at all, shiftless layabout that he is.  (Yes, I actually have 17 children, but the other 16 have grown up, had families of their own, retired, and moved to Phoenix.)  All of this means that, as a family, we've been sticking pretty close to home.

Nevertheless, judging from the accounts of actual journalists (not to mention my own past experiences with blackouts and transit strikes), I'd venture so far as to say that, while more people than usual will certainly take to their bicycles, Sandy is not going to suddenly transform the largest city in Canada's cargo pants into Amsterdam or Copenhagen.  Sure, part of this is because of our deeply-ingrained transit habits, but it's also because lots of people in New York have pretty long commutes, and the simple fact is that someone who hasn't been on a bike in 20 or 30 years is not going to suddenly ride 27 or 17 or even seven miles to Manhattan.  And all of this results in what city planners call "a gigantic clusterfuck."

But again, please keep in mind that I am a bubble/ass-dwelling blogger who is extremely lucky to live in a part of the city that has fared pretty well in the storm, so any words I write about it aren't worth the ass from which I pulled them.  Plus, in portions of the city where there is still no power it seems people are making industrious use of bicycles:


I say the city should attach the entire CRCA to the power grid and make them pedal around the clock until this whole thing is over.   It's time for the Freds to finally start giving something back.

Also, while there's no better vehicle than a bicycle in times like these, it's still important to keep in mind that post-disaster New York City is probably not the ideal environment for the novice cyclist.  No, you need to be a seasoned urban rider, like Russell Crowe:


Who, as a Tweeterer informs me, was making Australian meat pies of the paparazzi in New York in the days before the storm:

(Pap?  Smeared!)

11.6 of his communist miles is 7.2 Jesus miles, and if he did 7.2 Jesus miles in 30 minutes then he was traveling at the blistering speed of 14.4 miles per hour.  Of course, as we all know, 46 miles per hour is the speed at which a Fred goes "Woo-hoo-hoo-hoo," and now we also know that 14.4 miles per hour is the speed at which Russell Crowe gets all self-congratulatory--though it's not surprising he's so fast given how hard he trains:


At least he has the good sense to dismount while smoking.

Speaking of America and the USA and Jesus and how awesome we are in comparison to the rest of the world, a Velonews editorial makes the case that it's now up to us to lead the "global fight against doping:"


Right, because all our other global fights have been turning out so well.  Honestly, it's pretty difficult to have faith in this great nation of ours when our college students can't even keep their heads out of their u-locks (via another Tweeterer, and turn the volume down because the music will make you want to kick your cat):

 

I sincerely hope he was expelled immediately for being a complete idiot.

You know who would never be dumb enough to put a u-lock around his neck?  Mario Cipollini.  (Though if he did do it he'd probably be able to slip it right off again thanks to all the grease.)  However, he does like to put cycling socks on his "downstairs parts," and here he is being fitted for a pair (as forwarded by another reader):


("I think you're going to need an extra extra large.")

So why cycling socks?  Well, because he wears them during coitus because the wicking properties make him even more fertile, and his goal is to populate the entire world with little Cipos and Cipettes.

There will never be enough sawdust for a future that unctuous.

120 comments:

Anonymous said...

First!

RANTWICK said...

breadcrumbs yum!

babble on said...

wooot!

Anonymous said...

Top Ten

le Correcteur said...

Missed the effing podium! Damn!

Anonymous said...

Awesome neo-pro

Kenny said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Yea rantwick and babble!

Kenny said...

AND THAT'S HOW TO LOOK COOL WHILE RIDING A BIKE WITH A CIGARETTE HANGING OUT YOUR MOUTH!

Anonymous said...

TOOP TEEN

Comment deleted said...

Thank you for leaving your ass bubble long enough to post, RTMS.

However, your idea of expelling college students for being complete idiots would deplete our campuses. Personally speaking, I rely on complete idiots for my paycheck.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

MEAT PIES
PAPS MEAR

theEel said...

weed.

babble on said...

OOOOOOOOH FRILLY!?!

Come out come out where ever you are! Cipo's here today... come out to play!

babble on said...

Um, Snobbikins??
What do you MEAN the music will make you want to kick your cat? That's the best song ever, and easily the highlight of that dumbass kid's video.

Muh nah muh nuh.

RANTWICK said...

Me and Babble podiumed together. It was intense.

I have a question. Where's the key for the U-Lock? I mean, if he got it ON his neck...

Am I just being dead stupid somewhow?

RANTWICK said...

@babble - that music, in that context, made me phone my cat and threaten her with a good kicking.

When watching it performed by Muppets, it is fine.

babble on said...

scofflaw

Comment deleted said...

Yeah, I can just see college dude getting out of the lock, reaching into his pocket and saying "Oh, THIS is embarrassing!"


RANTWICK said...

It was just the one time, and for the UNDEAD! Is there no forgiveness in this world?

Buffalo Bill said...

I wonder how many of the kids that are born 9 months from now will be named Sandy?

Anonymous said...

Hallowe'en alleycat, much silliness. Beer later, good.

hey nonny mouse

Anonymous said...

Top 25!!

Jai Sangha said...

Greetings from Canada! Glad you like our cargo pants. I started a blog recently and really enjoyed this post. First, my wishes with everyone in NY. In fact, the first image of the tree on the car caught my attention.

I like how you transitioned from the original feedback question to Russell Crowe (I like what you did with the title) and kids with U-Locks around their necks.

I enjoyed your humour and self-effacing thoughts (really, bloggers write out of their asses? Here I was thinking we do a great service to society).

I run a bicycle rental service at my college campus and we just switched to all U-Locks. I just hope nobody loses the keys because it does not look pretty getting that thing opened again.

Keep up the blogging. Will check back. Cheers!

Anonymous said...

I prefer to wear a sock on my...



balls™

Anonymous said...

On your saline balls?

dnk said...

Snob,


Sorry you can't make it out of the house and onto your bike with your camera/phone/video thingy. There is some pretty amusing stuff happening on the bike paths and bridges. Wish you could be there.


Wish I could "report" on it all with the proper comic tone, but then again if I could I wouldn't be reading your blog....

McFly said...

Cigarette and a healment. Fucking. Awesome.

All The Looters in Brooklyn said...

Now? NOW!

Anonymous said...

okay, so I ride into work everyday (my commute is only about 3 miles) and can offer some color on the bike commuting scene post Sandy (if anyone cares). I've noticed fewer cyclists on the road over the past three days instead of more, I think people are just staying home. The car traffic is pretty crazy given that most public transport in and out of the city is still closed. The result is that there are a lot more cars on the road than usual and the drivers are pretty frustrated given that it just took them 2.5 hours to drive 20 miles. My commute has been equally as pleasant, albiet slightly more smug. Bottom line, not the best time to take up bike commuting on the streets of NYC. As much as it is my birthright as a New Yorker to bitch about everything and everybody, I have to say the city is doing a great job dealing with the clean up and the citizens are showing an unusual level of thoughfulness and courtesy in navigating the post-Sandy shit show. (queue annoying Jay-Z song...)

Anonymous said...

I thought that may have been some Hot M.I.L.F. on that stationary tanden.[SHUDDER followed by cold chills] I was so wrong.

Anonymous said...

It is absolutely imperative, once you have weaseled your way into a national cultural sport and pissed all over it, to lead the cleanup effort.
And do it your way, godeffindamnit!
Also doesn't hurt to hurl a hideous insult at them in the first parapragh of your sanctimoniuos editorial.

Anonymous said...

Gets you thinking. You just don't hear enough elephant polka these days.
Sad, really.

Anonymous said...

It wont be long before your youngest leaves home and joins his siblings here in Phoenix. Just make sure you send him with enough money to buy a sub-compact 9mm Glock upon arrival. No self respecting Phoenician would be caught dead without one.

leroy said...

My dog explained that the difference between a journalist and a blogger is that the journalist dresses like Roland Hedley for work and the blogger works in his boxers while wiping Cheeto stained fingers on his un-ironic Hello Kitty T-shirt.

But he's just be grumpy.

I told him he was getting a U-Lock collar for Festivus.

Pat Smear said...

Cat 6 for life!

Anonymous said...

Those Firemen aren't wearing approved safety goggles. What are they thinking.

McFly said...

Hey Babble I got some breakfast at 5:18 a.m. It was so satisfying and delicious.

Jimboner said...

C A T 6 N O T D E A D !

babble on said...

McFly -was it Skittles?

Frilly said...

Oh Cipo! I have socks, lots and lots of socks.

xxoo
Frilly

Anonymous said...

Homer, are you just holding on to the can?

africansingle said...

The latest in crabon hurricane aftermath (aftermarket?) tyres ?
http://www.designboom.com/weblog/read_2.php?CATEGORY_PK=16&TOPIC_PK=24611

Anonymous said...

Tilford does have a car. He uses it to take his bike to the car wash to rinse off the Kansas dust.

McFly said...

Nah. No skittles. Just um...man this being decent is tough...it was more of a scheduled maintenance thing. For me. It was magical.

Anonymous said...

That was he can blow out his bearings then blog about how awesome he is at replacing them. He is, ya know?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Bike Snob, thank you! No one roasts "Freds" and "Fredliness" like you do. I have a question. Brett Roadie rides his ultra-light road bike 20 mph for one hour. Corie Commuter rides her pannier clad hybrid bike 15 mph on her one hour commute to work, and Cam Cruiser rides 10 mph on his ultra-heavy steel cruiser for one hour on his way to his favorite pub. The question: who gets the most exercise? My answer; only Brett (and his fellow “Freds”) and Russell Crowe really cares. Riding bicycles, for the most part, is all good.

Anonymous said...

Cipo is so well-endowed that he uses a u-lock as a cock ring.

Anonymous said...

Cipo is going to eat those socks like they were a warm, juicy pussy.

Anonymous said...

Roland Hedley's that guy that used to turn up in Doonesbury strips wearing a safari suit, isn't he? Is he a real person too?

hey nonny mouse (overseas and ignorant of such things)

Frilly said...

Awesome! I'll bring the baguette.

Anonymous said...

More journalism in this blog or imafuckinkillya.

Touristsbike said...

Still laughing at the anti-forrest gump! I bet he didn't even notice sandy.

Anonymous said...

I'll bet that NYC sewers having been this clean since they were constructed but I feel sorry for all those alligators, snakes, and rats, that live in NYC sewers. Having your life disrupted like that with all that water gushing in. PETA should be all over this.

babble on said...

Frilly - perfect! you know you'll have plenty of olive oil handy to dip it in...

McFly - I'm intrigued, but rather than probe you for more details, I will sit back and congratulate you on your self control this week. You've exceeded my expectations.

African single - those would go really well with my black leather trousers and studded high heel booties.

g-roc said...

If I had those big knobby tires on my bike, I'd be happy going 14.4 Jesus miles per hour too. Still, I'd prefer to see 23.2 Commie Canuck miles on my speedo. 14.4Jesus miles looks so depressingly slow in comparison.

(admittedly, I only said the above so Russell wouldn't punch me)

Billy said...

Do dooo do do do! Mana-mana! I love that song.

Anyway, there was one line in the NYT transportation clusterfuck coverage that caught my eye:

"Only bicycles seemed to be rolling."

Well duh. Amazed they even though it worth mentioning. Waiting for the smugness news service to pick that up and run with it, or maybe they're too nice to use the storm as an opportunity to point out how little sense it makes to drive into Manhattan.

leroy said...

My dog says Roland Hedley is real, but you can't believe half the stuff he says.

I think he's just miffed because we saw a small tree blocking the Second Avenue bike lane yesterday and I ignored his Yakov Smirnoff impression: "In NYC, tree lift limb on you."

Marcel Da Chump said...

News flash: bike racks full to capacity at the Time & Life Building. Building management installed an extra rack.

J said...

I've been extremely lucky as well in my part of Queens. Bikes lanes do seem a bit more utilized; though once you hit queens bridge, you probably have to walk the bike lane with the inundated and irritated droves that are prime to sock the smug regular cyclists!

Anonymous said...

Anon. @1:45

As someone named Brett, I take great pride in being able to differentiate myself from the t-shirt wearing time traveling retro Fred from the planet Tri-Dork a.k.a. Bret based on the spelling of my name. In all other regards we are nearly identical, but i take comfort in the fact that I'm not the one lampooned by Wildcat Rock Machine.
Much thanks,
Brett with two t's

Anonymous said...

I think I am in love with Babble.

Anonymous said...

I don't trust that "Jai Sangha" character @12:38. Firstly, he gave an accurate summary of Snob's post; who has the time to actually READ the post, when we all compete to make the podium, and be first with the snarkiest comment? Secondly, he said he's from Canada; well, why was his comment in American and not that Canada language? In Canada they say stuff like "woot!" and "OOOOOOOOH" and "Muh nah muh nuh." He's a troll....

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Babble you got a pair of black leather trousers?!! I'd love to see a pic of you rocking those!

Фofonov said...

Best part of the day? Having BSNYC giving me the disgusted face while I was salmoning at his caravan on E8th Street in Kensington. To my defense: I was avoiding the stupid traffic on Coney Island and as a bonus: i got to sup you, your wife and the 17hooligans you wee toting

g-roc said...

woot! OOOOOOOOH. Muh nah muh nuh.
Just sayin'

leroy said...

Socks? Socks!?

That's the way to a woman's heart?

No wonder folks dope to win a pair of socks in an amateur criterium.

It all makes sense now. It's a Darwinian thing.

Anonymous said...

Yup, socks and drugs and rock and roll.

hey nonny mouse

Invisible Man said...

To answer briefly the point from your correspondent (which I know is not the point, but I'm being contrarian) yes, out here in the world outside Snob's head, people do seem to be cycling more. The bike room in my office on Sixth Avenue is fuller than I've ever seen it. The problem is navigating round the bit of Manhattan with no traffic lights because of the power outage. It's made me finally appreciate what traffic lights do to tame the cars. I tried First Avenue on Tuesday, got spooked quickly and headed back over the Manhattan Bridge to home. I've since been riding to Greenpoint, over the Pulaski Bridge then via the Queensboro Bridge to the bit of Manhattan that actually has power.

Dog on Car Roof said...

At the very max of the storm, with rain raining and wind blowing Cipo's hair straight back, my dog trotted over and dropped my helmet at my feet. WTF? She wanted me to ride to my death. I kept one eye on her thereafter. This morning she told me to vote for Mitt. Now I'm keeping two eyes on her at all times. WTF! A republican bitch in the household all these years. Man's best friend, indeed. Will be closing and locking the bedroom door tonight.

babble on said...

Anon@ 3:30. Thank you. I enjoyed that.

CyclingAdvocate/ PoliticalWonk said...

Dog on Car Roof,

Tell the truth..."vote mutt", she said.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Фofonov,

Sorry! That's just my normal face. I can't blame you, the line for gas was snarling everything.

--Wildcat Rock machine

Dooth said...

I need to know where Cipo gets his shirts!

McFly said...

WTF is so great about Mine(Mind?) Craft and why do I have to literally peel it away from my son. Who is not a fat dork? Yet.

McFly said...

My puncuation got flip-flopped and I sincerely apologize for it.

Fnarf said...

I was quite interested to note the technique of that cop with the bolt-cutters; he was bracing the tool on his "pants yabbies", which is either really stupid or really tough, I dunno.

Of course, there are hundreds of bike thieves in NYC (and elsewhere) who could have had that lowly U-Lock off in five seconds, like they do all day long every day.

babble on said...

McFly - I dunno, but it's a damned pandemic.

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

He is always wanting me to "come and see what he did", its digital Lego blocks, at best. I use my free time to much more creative things.

babble on said...

Mine gives a blow by blow account as he goes, whether anyone is listening or not.

In a remarkable moment of self-awareness yesterday, he said "I sure talk a lot," to which I replied "Yup. You sure do."

He comes by it naturally, poor thing... He is, after all, the second Son of Babble.

Muh nah muh nuh.

McFly said...

How old? Mine is 11. He can get talky but is pretty chill for the most part.

There is incredible yoga porn in the new issue of BICYCLING the MAGAZINE. On page.....69...I crap you negative. She even has a killer cyclists' tan lines. Me likey.

Pat Morgan said...

Like your blog! Nice video and music! Good choice for when you are riding

Comment deleted said...

McBabs,

Apparently, you can build a computer out of rocks with it. That would have gotten my attention at that age.

Anonymous said...

The key broke in the lock.

Anonymous said...

Babble on...
Do you commute in your black leather trousers??
I do, and it's great.

Just Say Yes to Beyond Category Drugs said...

1-86 are DQ'd for EPO'ing. Top O'Heep. YES!

Anonymous said...

Jesus, now McFly and babble are discussing the love children...

monika.gilmore said...

The last thing people want while they're trying to clean up after Sandy is everyone suddenly deciding to grab a bike and wobble all the way to work. With trees and power lines/poles down, flooding, limited transit, and street closures, no one wants to watch out for the people who bike the way they drive...

babble on said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

So Manhattan is now just like Venice is everyday. Maybe some fixed-pole gondolas would be apropos.

babble on said...

Comment Deleted - actually, as far as games go, it's kinda cool.

McFly - he's nine, bless him, and funny as all hell. Keeps life interesting...

anon@7:21 - meh.

Anonymous said...

Brett, Have you ever asked yourself why poor Bret, has been so freely "lampooned" by the wise and venerable Bike Snob. Probably because Bret has "momentary" lapses in cycling etiquette or occasionally looks down on other cyclists who may keep him from achieving his personal best for that day. Only he can say. "On your left" ding, ding!

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Hey McFly I got one 11 years old too and yup he'll build stuff with the digital blocks for hours on end. I don't get it back in the day we played with pac man and asteroids and tank on atari and they got the coolest graphics today on xbox but they have fun with those giant stupid pixels on mind craft.

babble on said...

anon@ 6:45 - I commute in whatever I'm wearing to work that day - typically a suit(skirt) and heels. Black leather isn't always office appropriate, but never say never!

Poppa Wheelie said...

I want leather pants

Poppa Wheelie said...

I'll wear 'em everyday.

MOJO RISN

McFly said...

We used to play alot of racing games which are fun as crap but he is in a different phase. I say TOCA Race Driver on PS2 is still the best Jerry, the best.

Although....Mario Cart.....

We ARE doing a CX Saturday so that should be fun.

Anonymous said...

Black leather pants are never "appropriate" anywhere (except if you are a rock star), that's why it's appropriate to wear them everywhere!

To feel their power!

Yours,
Anon @6:45.

babble on said...

Then if you fake it till you make it you'll be a rock-star in no time. Powerful logic.

McFly said...

Like with the skittles.

Homo Hendrix said...

And the wind cries ...

Larry


Dum Dum Dum

Lee Ho 'The Canibal' Fook said...

****TONIGHT SPECIAL****

Human Chow Mien*

*25% Werewolf Discount 7:30 to 9:00

Anonymous said...

Inverted fork post Sandy bike commuter:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/planetgordon/8145513871/in/set-72157631904784902/

Btw, watching this photo album.. No lights no fenders on NY bikes??

g-roc said...

Comment deleted - I am so using McBabs from now on. Awesome.

Oh, and McBabs 5:27, we appreciate you not elaborating on the "creative things" - at least the Mc, the Babs, shmaybe intrigued.

Anonymous said...

quite some bike commuting happening in post Sandy NYC:

https://twitter.com/search?q=%23bikenyc

McFly said...

In honor of Snob slamming on crabon CX bikes and fancy equipment, and also in order to focus on bikecycles and not on......not bikes I have opted to showcase my '91 Raleigh Competition with 30c Kenda Kwiks as my avatar. And the only mod from road bike I made was a 39 tooth chainring down from a 42. Cyclocross like its was meant to be. In last place.

Anonymous said...

Even the WSJ...

http://blogs.wsj.com/metropolis/2012/11/01/novice-cyclists-dust-off-their-bikes-after-the-storm/

Anonymous said...

Oh well, my comments were a celebration of black leather pants.
I love mine and wear them often, on and off the bike!

(Please excuse my english as it is not my first language.)

Yours, as always,
Anon @6:45.

Drunk Poet said...

There once was a girl from Vancouver...

She would fuck in an I-ROC with louvers....

Gear Shift in the middle....

She still got her Skittles...

Then sucked like her last name was Hoover...

martian anus said...

spodeetastically dudes

Hungover at Work said...

Let's find that cat that shit in my mouth.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if this has already been commented, but why would an esteemed actor take a decent mountain bike and put those crazy handlebar extenders on them? also, his bike has a pull shock. I can imagine that he has a personal bike lackey that hates having to pump that thing up.

Anonymous said...

Steve Tilford buried his Swiss army knife by a tree. There is a 63% chance he will remember where it is. There is a 37% chance it will rust to death.

crosspalms said...

I don't have any black leather pants, but I once bought a pair of lederhosen thinking they'd make great bike shorts. They didn't. I got a couple of Halloweens out of them, though.

Bikes for kids said...

Getting in after the initial rush also gave us some time to chat with the bike company reps, specifically the guys from Felt, Greg at Fatback bikes, the folks from Giant, and especially the reps for Tailwind Nutrition.

Anonymous said...

http://yt.cl.nr/whl_vY7BuAs

Anonymous said...

helical

Tomzkpf said...

Homer, are you just holding on to the can?

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