The assistant who allowed it to happen has been fired.
The funny thing though is that I don't even have a cat, and the little fucker just leaped out of the box when I opened it. That must be Brooks's idea of a joke. Anyway, I've decided to keep it for the time being, and I'm naming her "Countess Labia," at least until such time as I learn how to sex a cat, and which point I'll change the name to "Count Cockula" if it turns out to be a male.
In any case, I haven't "installed" (which is a pretty overblown word for bolting a saddle to a seatpost) yet, since I was SO, SO BUSY YESTERDAY, and when you put on a new saddle you have to do the whole thing with the tape measure, then you have to ride it up and down the block to dial it in, and then you probably have to move the little piece of electrical tape on your seatpost that marks your saddle height, and before you know it it's midnight and the cat has taken a crap in your underwear drawer because you forgot to feed it again.
Maybe "install" isn't so overblown after all.
I did, however, manage to extricate the saddle from its packaging, and the side your scranus goes on has this whole midcentury modern wallpaper thing going on:
While the underside is all rubbery, which is good if you're the kind of person who likes to ride over downed power lines after heavy storms:
Okay. Now I'll stop talking about it until I've put it on my bike and ridden it for awhile. (I'm talking about the saddle, not the cat.)
Speaking of being SO, SO BUSY YESTERDAY, while I was out and about being busy I rode a Citi Bike for the first time in awhile because one was actually available when I needed it, and I'm amused to report that Cat 6 racing is not only alive but flourishing in Brooklyn, New York, USA:
While the fixie riders form a shoal in front of the crosswalk, this cunning person trackstands behind them, ready to launch an attack the moment the light changes:
I made a right and went home on the subway, because I've given up on life.
Having given up on life, you can probably guess what I did when I got home. That's right, I poured myself some booze, sat my ass down on the couch, and watched Netflix until I passed out. Sadly, the hilarious Cuba Gooding, Jr./Horatio Sanz buddy comedy "Boat Trip" wasn't available, so instead I was forced to watch a documentary, the name of which I have since forgotten. (And I'm not turning on the Netflix to find out, because if I do and if "Boat Trip" is back on then there goes my day.) I do remember what the documentary was about though, which was overpopulation and stuff. Specifically, here's what the people in the documentary said:
--There's suddenly a shitload of motherfucking people on the planet;
--Even though our society grows exponentially more complex, we still have the same shitty dumb brains we did when we were clubbing our mates and dragging them into caves by their hair and bludgeoning wooly mammoths to survive;
--Because of the first thing combined with the second thing, we're not very good at planning ahead, and so we're basically fucked.
Needless to say I lasted about ten minutes before I was snoring away and drooling on myself, but the few minutes I did watch really got me thinking. For example, there was one guy who was talking about "Progress Traps." Here's how Wikipedia defines the concept:
A progress trap is the condition human societies experience when, in pursuing progress through human ingenuity, they inadvertently introduce problems they do not have the resources or political will to solve, for fear of short-term losses in status, stability or quality of life. This prevents further progress and sometimes leads to collapse.
So take the car, for instance. We invent the car, they're great, we can go places really easily all of a sudden, but a century later our economy depends on them and we're running out of oil and the landscape is overdeveloped and we're totally overridden with the things and they'll probably be our undoing.
But in the meantime, since we've still got the caveman brain, we're basically just concerned with keeping the gas as cheap as possible so we have more money for Cheetos and porn.
I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "I don't drive a car. I ride a bike. I'm not part of the problem, I'm part of the solution."
Are you, now? Based on the documentary I watched for ten minutes and the Wikipedia entry I couldn't be bothered to read all the way through, I think bikes are falling into the old "progress trap," too. Consider the "Bitlock:"
Evidently, holding onto a small piece of metal and inserting it into a bike lock is too difficult now. Furthermore, if you want to let someone else use your bike lock for some reason, handing them this small piece of metal is wildly inconvenient and can expose you to germs, herpes, and the bubonic plague. So instead some genius wants you to use your phone for all this, because everybody knows simple mechanical devices function much better when you add a completely unnecessary electronic element, especially in adverse weather conditions.
Plus, in the 21st century you have to loop every single asshole you know into every little aspect of your life, and now that includes adding or removing them from your network of people who are allowed to unlock your bike when you're not around. See, in the 20th century, if you missed a bus, you waited for the next one. Now, you send a text to Brandon, whose bike just happens to be right near the bus stop you're using because that always happens:
And of course Brandon lets you use his bike:
But, Brandon being Brandon, he wants something in return:
Uncool, Brandon, uncool.
Anyway, it looks like they struck a deal, and that hand position foreshadows the act of making payment later on:
So how is this a progress trap? Well, because this guy needs $120,000 and a fuckton of other resources to turn the simple act of unlocking your bike into a technologically advanced social networking circle jerk:
This on top of all the other resources being used to make all the mechanical locks already out there. But of course, unlike the metal key you already have (or the combination you keep in your brain because you're one of those dorks who uses a combination lock), the Bitlock offers "Health Tracking:"
Strava, Garmin, Health Tracking...why are people so obsessed with having electronic devices tell them what they just fucking did? I ride a bike for a few hours, I go up some hills, I come home hungry and tired. I know where I was, I know what I did, I know how I feel. I need my fucking phone to verify this for me?
Speaking of progress traps, it looks like Portland may be Portlanding itself right out of being Portland:
“We could become San Francisco,” Portland Housing Bureau program coordinator Kim McCarty said Friday at a conference organized by Housing Land Advocates about the role of transportation in affordable housing.
It'd be a shift that, if mismanaged, could pull the Portland neighborhoods that are relatively bike-friendly out of financial reach for much of the population.
So Brooklyn became Portland, and Portland's becoming San Francisco, and San Francisco is America's App-hole, ensuring we'll all be able to whack each other off via iPhone as we veer off into oblivion.
And that's why I should have watched "Boat Trip."
Lastly, in more great news for cyclists, I've received a press release informing me that FSA has released a headset bearing that saves an amount of weight roughly equivalent to a dollop of frumunda cheese:
Super Light (SL) ACB Headset Bearing - 38% Weight Reduction
MULTIKEO, WA 10/21/13 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - FSA is excited to announce its latest innovation as the leader in headset technology: Super Light (SL) ACB Bearings that are up to 38% lighter.
The new SL Bearings have the same chrome steel inner / outer races and balls that our standard FSA cartridge bearings use. You might ask “Well, where does the weight savings come from?” The answer lies in the housing. FSA’s new SL Bearings have a Hybrid Alloy Housing compared to the 100% Steel versions of our headsets. The alloy housing is responsible for up to 9.2 grams of weight savings per bearing, yet maintains the same legendary FSA durability.
Running our new SL Bearing is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to save weight on your bike. They are drop-in replacements for your current bearings and retail for only $29.99 each
I've done them one better by removing my headset bearings entirely and replacing them with petroleum jelly, but if you want to spend $30 to save nine grams go right ahead.