There was a time not too long ago when some snow wasn't really a big deal, but this thing happened in New York City recently where people love to form ridiculously long lines for no reason (it has something to do with gentrification as far as I can tell), and apparently yesterday morons were waiting on lines that wrapped around the corner to get into Trader Joe's:
Just so you know, assuming you have some form of currency, it's virtually impossible to go hungry in New York City. Sure, if you lived in Zone A during Sandy you had some problems, but as far as snow goes it's a total non-issue. There are people selling food everywhere. All the time. Like, every kind of food you can possibly imagine, and many you can't, and for prices that amount to some pocket change.
Of course, after reading that I shuffled into the kitchen for a snack, and discovered to my horror that I was OUT OF TRADER JOE'S® CASHEW MACADAMIA DELIGHT TREK MIX!!!
(Specialized is currently suing Trader Joe's over the use of the word "Trek," on the grounds that when people think of large American bike companies that sponsor dopers they eventually think of Specialized.)
After my initial panic I calmed myself by remembering that I can always
By the way, I have no problem whatsoever with beasts of burden pulling carriages around Central Park, and I was also amused to note that if you take this story and replace the word "horse" with "bike messenger" it's still completely accurate:
The horses built this country. Now they're just working a leisure job. It's not even like, hard work. They do a run cause it's 20 minutes, they sit around for an hour, they eat. It's exercise for them. If you take away the horses' jobs, what's going to happen to the horses? There's already thousands of horses going to slaughter in this country every year.
Actually, that's not entirely true. You also have to replace the word "slaughter" with "Portland."
Speaking of Specialized, remember how I dropped mine and worried that it might be cracked?
And then Specialized was all like, "Have a great day?"
@bikesnobnyc Hard to say from the picture. I would recommend taking it to the dealer and have them do a proper inspection. Have a great day!
— Specialized (@iamspecialized) June 14, 2013
To be honest, this dismissiveness kind of annoyed me. I'm a semi-profesisonal bike blogger with dozens of readers! I bet when Fat Cyclist drops his Specialized they give him a free frame replacement and a handjob. (I just made the first-ever Fat Cyclist/handjob reference on the entire Internet, and I'm as proud as I am violently nauseous.) You know, because he raises "hundreds of thousands" of "dollars" for "charity."
Anyway, between the possible crack and the litigiousness of the company who put their decals on the thing I've been feeling increasingly uneasy about riding it, and so the other day I decided to take matters into my own hands. It looked like the clear coat had sort of bubbled in the area of impact, and so I figured if I scraped it away I could see if the thing was actually cracked under there:
(It's extremely liberating to attack an overpriced crabon frame with a glass scraper, I suggest you try it immediately, preferably on someone else's bicycle.)
By the time the decal started coming off I figured I'd gone far enough, and so I leaned in and squinted:
It's hard to tell from the shitty smartphone picture, but it looks like maybe there is indeed a crack there, which I've outlined using Highly Sophisticated Graphic Image Technology:
Of course, at this point (or really before this point) a smart person would simply take this bicycle to an expert for analysis, but if I was a smart person I wouldn't be riding a crabon bike in the first place, now would I?
No I wouldn't.
In any case, stressed and going totally anal over your Fredcycle is no way to go through life, and I realized that, even if the frame wasn't cracked at all, by worrying away at that spot on the top tube it eventually would be, and that basically I'm behaving like a paranoid mental patient trying to dig an imaginary microchip out of his forearm. I also remembered that I recently received these lavish San Marco bicycle saddles, for no other reason than I'm a noted bike blogger:
The red one, a Concor, is all velvety, and I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it. As for the white one, a Rolls, it gave me an idea that has been the downfall of many a bike dork:
"I think I will build a bike around it."
For is that not the pinnacle of dorkdom, using some small component like a derailleur pulley or a water bottle or a scrap of handlebar tape as an excuse to put together an entire bicycle?
In this case though I figure I've got a whole bike's worth of parts on a frame I'm now embarrassed to ride, as well as an ostentatiously "vintage"-looking saddle. Plus, deep in my parts closet, I've got a frame that is not only begging for a "vintage"-looking white saddle, but is also far less embarrassing than a Specialized, which is a pink frame with the name "Faggin" on it:
(The Faggin, coming out of the parts closet.)
Back when we were younger carefree Brooklynites living on flat terrain this was my wife's singlespeed runabout, but since moving to the New York City hill country and obtaining a Workcycles smugmobile the Faggin has been consigned to deepest storage. Conveniently, my wife and I are the same height (well, she's probably taller but I like to say we're the same height because it makes me feel better about myself), so the thing more or less fits me, and so I think it's about time I eschew the overpriced superlight Taiwanese crabon and put some mediocre pink Italian steel between my legs.
Of course, I intend to keep the badly chipping pink paint, and besides the white saddle I will make no attempt whatsoever to "restore" the bicycle or render it in any way "attractive." Instead, I'll just move the parts over from the Specialized and replace only what I can't kludge or otherwise force onto the thing.
Then I'll take the plastic bike, strip it completely, re-decal it as a brand new Pinarello, and sell it for a shitload of money on eBay.
Speaking of saddles, I am still quite comfortable on the Brooks Cambium:
(Dead Christmas trees are more seasonally appropriate than disembodied hands.)
Though on the last couple of rides I seemed to be detecting a slight and occasional creaking from the saddle rails when I shimmy up towards the nose of the saddle to unleash my awesome climbing power. I asked Brooks if they'd heard of this happening before, and they told me they had not, and to their credit they neglected to add that it's probably because I'm such a fatass.
Anyway, I'll schpritz some lube in there and see if it goes away, and I'll let you know if it works just as soon as some of this goddamn snow melts.
See you at Trader Joe's. Happy plundering.