Monday, August 12, 2013

The Best Thing About Bikes Is All The Great Stuff To Put On Your Head!

That's it, I'm quitting bikes.

It's been a steady build-up, but I'd have to say the final straw on the cake is the guy I saw this past weekend riding a bike with clip-on aero bars while wearing compression socks and one of those Giro "Air Attack" helments:

I didn't take a picture because I was "off the clock" and trying to enjoy myself, but it was a really unfortunate get-up.  Really, I suppose there's nothing even remarkable about it these days, but I guess I've grown sufficiently out of touch that I still find it jarring, and between the socks and the plastic hat it looked medical--like the sort of ensemble your doctor would insist you wear if you were prone to on-the-bike seizures.

Come on.  You're taking a leisurely Saturday ride over the George Washington Bridge.  Do you really need to wear surgical hose?

On the opposite end of the spectrum from the clinical, medical, terminal Fred look is the organic, recycled, bamboo-frame-lashed-together-with-reclaimed-dental-floss look, and somewhere around there lies this hat to which I was alerted by a Tweeterer:


With Bike share and rental programs taking off across the US, safety has become a huge concern for travelers looking to optimize city time via a bicycle. But lugging around a helmet can be a bit cumbersome and renting one can often be downright nasty. Enter the Paper Pulp Helmet. A 100% recycled and recyclable, simple, inexpensive option for riders looking to stay safe when having their personal helmet is not an option.

I don't mean to make it all about looks.  I really don't.  But do you really need to strap a used coffee filter to your head to use a fucking Boris Bike for 15 minutes?


At the very least you should complement your coffee filter helment with some recycled rainwear:


(Can you correctly name this movie?  If so email Giro and ask for a free "Air Attack" helment.  They're not running a contest or anything, I just like the idea of people bothering them.)

You've got to hand it to the Automotive Industrial Complex, though, for the've successfully brainwashed us into being completely and utterly unable to get anywhere near any sort of bicycle without donning some kind of ridiculous outfit.

By the way, here's how the coffee filter helment is made:

 

I'd cut out the middleman and just put on a newspaper hat, but that's just me:


(Finally, a helment you can read in the bathroom.)

Anyway, if you want to ride around with a cupcake liner on your head then be my guest.

Speaking of revolutionary new inventions to put on your head, a reader has informed me of a new product called "Cat Ears," which purports to reduce wind noise:


Our products Dampen, Buffer, and Deflect oncoming wind... so you can hear everything else better

"Rest your index finger in front of your ears during your next ride if you need a reminder of
 just how much of the surrounding world you are missing." - Technical Editor at Bikeradar.com

About our products:

  > Easily attach to the helmet straps

  > Soft materials dampen/deflect wind

  > Reduce loud annoying ear wind noise 

  > Acoustic transparence is maintained

  > Important sounds can be heard better

  > Performance/Satisfaction Guaranteed

Here are the Cat Ears once they've been installed on a Fred:


(Always wear your glasses over your Cat Ears.  You know, because otherwise you'll look ridiculous.)

Of course, if you're a sufficiently hairy man could always save the $8-$16 and grow a pair of sideburns for free instead:


(These Integrated Wind Deflectors are rated at "Fred Woo-Hoo-Hoo-Hoo Speed" squared.)

Or if you're a woman or otherwise facially hair-challenged and find wind noise a problem you could always just coif yourself accordingly:


Just don't style your hair like this, because the channels will only serve to amplify the wind noise at high speeds, like an un-faired roof rack:


(Alexandre Vinokourov reportedly bought a pair of "Cat Ears" and uses them as eyebrows.)

Lastly, here's a video via another rider to get you good and mad for the rest of the week:


I know what you're thinking, and I totally agree:

He could have spared us all that wind noise with a pair of Cat Ears.

125 comments:

balls™ said...

podio!

McFly said...

Leah was a bitch

tridorkable said...

PODUIM! Happy Monday, everyone.

ChamoisJuice said...

almost

Marcel Da Chump said...

Club Paradise

JB said...

Weeee! Broke my first chain ever this weekend. Changed my first chain ever this weekend.

mikeweb said...

Lots of Cat Ears sold = increase in Elvis sightings.

Grandmaster B said...

Top 10! I am your father!

DB said...

Haven't read yet.
Present.

Anonymous said...

Top 10 from Hanoi.

Roille Figners said...

Top X?

Serial Retrogrouch said...

10???

Roille Figners said...

DAMMIT!!!!

babble on said...

Good Monday!

Name said...

TOP TEN. READ. SAW VIDEO


RINGWRIT 14

Serial Retrogrouch said...

RF... our questions are way too rhetorical. of course we didn't make it... everyone is doping.

dnk said...

I came. I read. I'm conquered.

babble on said...

I feel so invisible. I alerted you to that silly cardboard contraption a month ago. :(

Name said...

Damn. Shouldn't have watched vid.

And new caption is Cretint 61. Fitting.

babble on said...

...sniff...

Sigh... that's fine. Just fine. I'm just going to go back to bed now and flick the bean.

JB said...

That dude slowing down the funeral procession (and thus at-fault-by-default) needs some cat ears. I could hardly hear the English gal spouting off like she's part of a This is Spinal Tap remake.

"Are you stoobid?"

"This one shalln't be played."

crosspalms said...

My sure-fire cure for annoying wind noise is to ride slower. You're welcome.

Anonymous said...

Garbage barge!

Serial Retrogrouch said...

i hehed and hawhawed... and even lol'd until the last video...
shit always leaves a bad taste.

babble on said...

OMG I spent all that money on expensive laser hair removal treatments for NOTHING?

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

Just stick a couple tampons in your ears to cut down on wind noise. They even have a handy string for attachment to your helment straps so you don't lose them.

DerZoots said...

Nothing I like better than a little funeral argy bargy I do say!




Robot funeral code: 19 Oputran

Comment deleted said...

I'm too lazy to read it and find out, but how good can the equivalent of an egg carton be at protecting your skull?

Comment deleted said...

I also missed this detail from the funeral dust-up story: was the corpse wearing a helment?

Anonymous said...

And this is the safety angle of helmets you never hear about:

When I see one of those Brontosaurus-egg-carton hats I *will* collapse in uncontrollable laughter, be I cycling, driving an 18-wheeler, carrying babies, or whatever, with all the concomitant risk to the public safety.

They should ban those things as a public menace.

DB said...

I cannot identify that movie.

Little help, please?

S├ębastien Lamarre said...

Finally a helmet you could use in the bathroom.

Wonder how it goes for cycling in the rain.

BamaPhred said...

Cat Ears, Bundt Pan liner helments, funeral scuffling. Funeral argy bargy would have been better if someone got pepper sprayed.
Call me whatever, but I pull over and stop for the funeral processions, ambulances, whatever. Stay alert and ride safe!

Anonymous said...

Magic paper pulp helmets. Oh, America.

Giro said...

$10 million to whoever can name the movie.

Anonymous said...

It's clearly Hedy Lamarr, but I can't name the picture …

Serial Retrogrouch said...

does vino's carpet match his eyebrows?

Spokey said...

babs;

It was absolutely the cyclist's fault. You can clearly see that he's riding on the wrong side of the road.

And don't give me the "but the cars were too". I'm sure they had invoked the "driving on the wrong side of the road to a funeral" waiver.

DB said...

This is a bicycling blog so it's either from Breaking Away or American Flyers.

Comment deleted said...

What is Club Paradise?

BamaPhred said...

Maybe a Monty Python sketch?

Comment deleted said...

Giro, make the check out to "Dr. C. Deleted", if you please.

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

Well honestly, what's the big deal about recycled helmets?

My dog has been selling those for years.

They're made of tin foil, can be formed in any aerodynamic shape one wishes and custom ventilated with a fork or pencil.

They're light weight and reflective.

Extra bonus, they block those pesky radio waves whose messages are louder and more disconcerting than any wind noise.

And when you're done, you can use them to bake potatoes.

DB said...

Was Hedy Lamarr in Club Paradise?

DB said...

Snob:
If that Giro helment was grey, it would resemble a tick that has fallen off my dog.
That is one ugly piece of head gear.

g. said...

I believe he was in Blazing Saddle and it's Hedley.

leroy said...

My dog informs me that's Hedley Lemar, not Heddy Lamarr.

But I think he's thinking of Tippi Hedren.

McFly said...

Sometimes I trick my bike by acting like I am putting protection on and then when I start to mount up and the head is out of it's peripheral vision I quietly slip it off and leave it laying on the stand and roll out of the shop with that more natural intimate feeling.

BARE BACK

Roille Figners said...

Great way to cut down wind noise: lose the healemenent! Although there are arguably no "important sounds" that you can't hear easily. "Cars coming" are loud as shit. "Sirens" too. "Horns" are just the sound of babies crying, so you can ignore that. "On your left" you can definitely ignore the shit out of. "Your Budnitz creaking" you won't be able to escape.

Anonymous said...

that dude in the video was asking to get hit, 1. he was riding a Brompton, 2. He wasn't wearing cat ears. Luckily he was wearing a helmet cam.

cdinvb said...

I'm thinking I want to dampen my ears I'll just work up a decent sweat. Or take a shower. Oh hell. I think I'm using my liberal arts education. My nose is going up in the air. Guess I'd better pull on some whitey tighties, cut-offs, a t-shirt and go biking. Wonder if I should put on two coats of sunscreen.

Buffalo Bill said...

I bet the bloke who got run over by the funeral procession had that clinical, medical, terminal Fred look. At least afterward.

rural 14 said...

rural 1st!

still here

RoadQueen said...

I feel like if you and your bike know each other well, and neither of you are just out with random riders/bikes, you probably don't need protection.

As for the wind thing, yeah I don't ride fast enough for that to be an issue.

3G said...

seriously, why has cycling become so stupid? I'm trying to think of THE one product that was produced that spawned stupid shit like Cat Ears. Everyone is so entitled to think that their product can make cycling more enjoyable. Face it, if you can't just get on a fucking bike and ride it then go take up sewing. These products make me so angry every time I see one.

\rant or /rant. sorry i forgot how to write HTML.

Anonymous said...

Just finished bikesnob abroad. I recommend it a good read. Well done WCRM. The thing is rife with typos though. The good people at Chronicle may want considering hiring a copy editor.

RoadQueen said...

Dude in the funeral video was pretty much an asshole. I mean, I'm not condoning the stupid bitch and bastard in the car hitting him, for Pete's Sakes. Last time I checked, being a convicted asshole didn't get you the death penalty.

But cummon...you're going to block a funeral procession? Really? Way to be an asshole, asshole.

Spokey said...

afternoon queenie

hope you're feeling better.

Probably most of us don't ride fast enough otherwise we wouldn't be here wasting our life.

RoadQueen said...

Thank you Spokey, I'm feeling much better.

I still can't suck literally, although I'm finding epic ways to suck figuratively.

Happy Monday!

McFly said...

Yes yes RoadQueen....exactly. And if you just happen to have an "accident" then you know you were both responsible but still totally blame it on the bike.

crosspalms said...

anon 1:25,
I recommend the person I saw the other day in a Chicago Manual of Style jersey

RoadQueen said...

McFly: 'Accidents' are just additional fun if you've got your cables tied.

Just sayin'.

RoadQueen said...

CREA MPIE

Flyover bike commuter said...

The best thing about the paper helment is that it's held in place by a recycled thong. He needs to get his girlfriend- at least I hope it belongs to his girlfriend- some colorful thongs that match the paper.

McFly said...

I am not going to lie though. I do almost always wear protection when I am riding the heavier kind with the bouncy rear end. You just never know when they are going to throw you if you start down a dirt road.

Anonymous said...

Think on this:

Any car approaching, that you can hear, but not see, is, roughly speaking, behind you.

All cars approaching from behind you, are either
A) going to hit you, or
B) not going to hit you.

Of the cars in category A), some will 1) sound just like cars that are not going to hit you, and some will 2) reveal in auditory format the fact that they are going to hit you; e.g. tires squealing, grinding against a guardrail, or being too much in your right ear such that directionally you know they're DIRECTLY behind you, things like that.

Of the cars in category A)2) (i.e. cars that are going to hit you, that you are auditorily aware of), some portion i) you can't do anything about, and some portion, ii) you can avoid.

Thus, Cat Ears are useful for category A)2)ii).

Flyover bike commuter said...

McFly,

If you don't want to get thrown,

never say "Your sister loves this"

on any ride, ever.

David said...

Road Queen

Read "The Bicycle in Amsterdam" or close to it. Just been reading it and half way through. Dutch riders could give a rip about cars. But the cars don't run them down, at least most days. But I am with you. I remember the old 70's ads about being "dead right" where someone gets flattened even though they are in the right. Being a fatberg(look it up) to the rest of the world endears cyclists to even less people.

RoadQueen said...

All you need to win the rodeo is an 8 second ride.

RoadQueen said...

David,

I don't even see that funeral procession incident as car vs. cyclist. To me, that was Asshole vs. Emotionally Fragile People In Vehicles Way Bigger Than Him.

Some assholes just decide to pick on the wrong people at the wrong time, then they're all indignant when they get the same treatment back.

RoadQueen said...

Oh hey, congrats and kisses to balls, McFly and tridorkable!

McFly said...

Apparantly Babble does not need protection.

She just uses her hand in the event of a major get-off.

Anonymous said...

RQ said "kisses to balls".....heehee

RoadQueen said...

Anon @ 2:00

Good eye, my friend. I didn't even catch that one until you so kindly pointed it out.

Remember what I said earlier about sucking figuratively in epic ways?

You're Welcome.

David said...

@Road Queen

Yeah, you can probably flip off the Prius driver but the Humvee might not be so smart.

As an aside, the list of A-hole drivers around here follow a consistent paradigm:

Dodge Truck
Jeep(male or female driver)
Volvos
Prius

I think its cuz the Prius drivers don't like driving but now that they can save the earth with a battery car the jump into the fray with the bigger dogs.

jayteepee said...

So that was the real inspiration for Wiggo's sideburns?

MLE said...

I pulled what I thought was acat hair from my cheek today. I am finally starting to grow a beard.
thank you god.

Vernal Magina said...

is that Rick Moreanus?

RoadQueen said...

David, your list is eerily similar to mine. Although I would have to encompass all lifted, loud, 4x4 trucks in the #1 slot, not just Dodge.

Everyone else slows down, gives a wide passing arc, waves. I smile and do the same. Those on the list? Barely move over, whiz by like they're being chased, and the diesel owners mash on the fuel to fog you out for good measure.

Anonymous said...

Ok, I may have been wrong about it being Hedy Lamarr (and Hedley wouldn't be caught dead in that outfit).

Actually, it looks like Rick Moranis, and it looks like maybe he's supposed to be tiny, so I guess it's from one of those "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids" movies (none of which I've ever seen)?

FR8 said...

I saw "Crow-Man" on the bike path yesterday. He's going to make me a helmet with a giant condor on it. I'm going to ride it in front of funeral processions, as a public service you understand.

BamaPhred said...

CD nailed it. What is Club Paradise and Who is Rick Moranis? Calling Podium girls to Mr Deleted, please.

Jonathan said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSox50NGUEg

Really?

McFly said...

Martina Navratilova looks pretty good with corn rows.

BIKE DYKE

Coffin Jerk said...

I wouldn't be caught dead in that funeral procession.

Roille Figners said...

Speaking of the dead, a guy jumped off the bridge to his death this morning. Passed by on my way to work, saw him sprawled out. Very sad, though his face looked peaceful, maybe even smirking. The cops were standing around not doing shit to help, which is how I knew, either I'm in New York, or the guy was dead.

RoadQueen said...

Coffin Jerk:

Over your dead body?

JB said...

Anyone got a pic of a cyclist wearing the Giro Air Attack helment? I need something to program into my HMMWV cyclist detection system.

Anonymous said...

Those Giro helments are old news. Vos wore one in the Olympics last July -> http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/galleries/photos/34566/4/4/women-s-road-race-london-2012-olympics-by-andy-jones.html

CommieCanuck said...

I feel so invisible. I alerted you to that silly cardboard contraption a month ago. :(

I did too. I think this means we're breaking up.

Few people know those cardboard healments are Canadian Army Surplus.

ChamoisJuice said...


http://www.jimhodgson.com/images//jenscat.png

ChamoisJuice said...

No matter how low you are, you can look at someone with aero bars on their bike and think, I am better than that person, and that makes me feel better about myself.

Anonymous said...

Steve Smith > you

Dooth said...

Rick Moranis in Club Paradise said "primo cannabis sativa." Yes, he did say "primo cannabis sativa." Primo. Cannabis. Sativa.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

OH MAN LOL!!!
Hey bikesnobnyc did you see that Bret is in the WorkCycles add on the side of your blog! And a mini-me Bret. And fresh lobsters -Hilarious.

You got to be in on that!

ChamoisJuice said...

Do you ever have one of those days, when the fact that you are not wearing compression socks and an aerodymanic healment doesn't really help you feel any better about yourself... like life is just one big cat 6 sperm race, and fuck me, the aerodynamics actually does help.

wishiwasmerckx© said...

99,
ps I like masculine women.

Fucktard said...

C

crosspalms said...

Do those ear people also make Cat 6 Ears, which create a wind sound to make you think you're going faster than you really are?

sctv_undead said...

One must be very young to not know Rick Moranis' work.

Crazy funny guy, but the "honey I shrunk..." things were dumb. Apparently they paid quite a few bills though, so nothing wrong with that.

Look up SCTV. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vkc5-RI39Ho

Most famously, Bob of the "Bob and Doug McKenzie" sketches.

Geddy said...

Take off, to the great white north, take off, it's a beauty way to go

Comment deleted said...

As seen on Gerry Todd...

Wait. No, this is the best.

Comment deleted said...

Shoot - Eugene Levy is Perry Como; still, all of SCTV rules.

Anonymous said...

Moranis' David Brinkley: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3mN7NxDpm7Y

Blog Drafter said...

List of vehicles that will kill you 'round these parts:

1. Crown Vic with an old person wearing those giant sunglasses. They WILL NOT move over an inch. (Mostly because they literally can't see you.)

2. Bubba in a 150. Especially on a Saturday morning. Seems they're all out gettin' beer before the race starts. It's a split between working 150's and the Pretty Boy 150's, they'll both kill you.

3. Any car driven by a teenage girl. They're just addicted to those phones. Teenage boys don't seem so bad in that way, except that the sons of the NASCAR fans will run by revving their V8 every time.

4. Any lawn service truck/trailer, which invariably will be stuffed with illegal Mexicans looking to hurt somebody.

5. The worst: an old S10 with an ATV slung sideways in the back. Might as well brace for impact if you see one of these coming up behind.

David said...

Blog Drafter

Same rules here on the Crown Vic. But those folks scare me when I am in my car too, not just biking. The yard service guys are a menace.

Serial Retrogrouch said...

CD,
those two skits are hi-larious. just made my day... first one is especially to my liking cuz i take pictures... and there's something japanese about it.
second one because like him, no matter how much i smoke, i don't get high, i just get depressed. so it's funny.

thanks

and scaranus

Ange said...

I literally laugh out loud every time I read this blog. Thank you, Wildcat.

babble on said...

McFly - I'm not sure one cat hair qualifies as a beard!

ChamoisJuice said...

I was having a bad day, and then I watched this video and I feel much better.

The worst drivers in the world are East Indian Canadians.

Huh? said...

So those cat ears somehow make the wind more humid?

McFly said...

Cat hair? Beard? Is this some kind of code? I am confused.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to see the paper helmet ridden in the rain....at the end of the video they proudly show it dissolving.

Coffin Jerk said...

RoadQueen: Yes, it would be a grave mistake.

L Ranaldo said...

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/bike-blog/video/2013/aug/09/bike-blog-experiments-speed-video

Bike Tinker said...

David 2:05 PM
Yes. The giant white trucks, and the Prius people. Everything in between is fine, but those guys are all drunk in their own farts, and will actively try to kil you. "Fatass Fucks Drive Fatass Trucks." Out of town, it's the little cocks in their little black "fast" cars that buzz you.

Angie Kritenbrink said...

I enjoyed the video about the exercise in futility aka the making of the paper helmet.

Anonymous said...

It's pronounced He•ro.

Anonymous said...

I rather wear a female condom on my head.

babble on said...

OMG! It's finally real. All my life I've dreamed of flying a Jet Pack!!

Anonymous said...

For a few bicyclists, wind noise is really annoying. If they need 'cat ears' fine by me.

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Fred Nifacent said...

Moving by bike seems ok if you are a minimalist. If you have stuff like a washer, dryer, refrigerator, kids and all their crap I do not see it happending. Last time we moved, 5 inches of snow fell the night before the move. Let me see a guy with a 24 cu ft. side-by-side on his back in 5 inches of snow and I will consider it.