To which a commenter replied thusly:
The Fatties at bikesdirect are rideable and fairly cheap. The FBSO from wallyworld will shoot your eye out kid.
DECEMBER 15, 2014 AT 9:27 PM
Here are said Bikesdirect fatties:
Shooting your eye out notwithstanding, I'd argue that it's the Bikesdirect offerings that are the most dangerous, for the simple reason that they're just nice enough to send you into an upgrade spiral. In fact, about five years ago, I ordered a shockingly inexpensive singlespeed 29er from Bikesdirect with the intention of reviewing it on this blog. Instead, it was an almost-but-not-quite-good-enough bike out of the box that, in an attempt to tweak it to my satisfaction, I ended up gradually changing every nearly every single part on it. Here it is early in the process, when I'd only changed the pedals, the tires, and the cockpit:
If you're wondering why it's upside-down and leaning against a tree, it's because that's where it wound up after I fell off of it.
Eventually, the only original parts left on this humble mail-order bike were the frame and the v-brake arms--I even built a pair of wheels for the damn thing--and the only thing that stopped me from installing a set of dick breaks was that my Engin finally arrived.
The Bikesdirect is now in storage, where it is waiting for my kid to get big enough to ride it.
So yeah, I don't mess with those anymore. The Walmart bike, however, seems like it would be safe, because if it's anything like the fixie I reviewed there's no way I'd be tempted to "upgrade" a piece of shit like that.
That would be downright Sisyphean.
And speaking of yesterday's post and fat bikes and kids' bikes and all the rest of it, Specialized may offer a $1,000 fat bike for kids, but apparently this is was the "world's first" fat bike for kids:
I'm sure Specialized will figure out a reason to sue them.
In other (oldish) news, Fredly historical reenactments are the new "epic:"
Following in the footsteps of Europe’s greatest conquerors isn’t easy. That’s why Ride and Seek, an international tour company in Sydney, Australia, suggests doing it on a bike. Next summer the group is introducing its second “epic” historical cycling tour, the Napoleon Expedition, a 45-day journey from Paris to Moscow.
It’s a trip so historically focused that it comes with a recommended reading list, beginning with Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.”
Evidently you'll be lovingly coddled every pedal stroke of the way:
Unlike Napoleon’s unfortunate troops, cyclists will receive constant care, dining options and entertainment throughout, including daily van support to assist riders on the road and a cultural itinerary dotted with Champagne tastings, architectural tours and mountainside picnics.
All for a measly US$16,000:
The inaugural trip, which is to cover more than 2,400 miles, begins on July 18 and costs 12,995 euros ($16,280); rates for individual stages begin at 2,295 euros ($2,875). All breakfasts are included as well as most dinners and a few special lunches; and there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the tour to allow riders to venture out on their own.
Wow. I had no idea Freds had such an insatiable lust for history, but now I'm determined to cash in, which is why I'm pleased to announce my new business venture:
(Frequent repetition of "history" for search engine optimization.)
Basically, I'm going to order a fleet of bicycles from Bikesdirect (or maybe Walmart) and charge riders $5,000 a head (or helment if you prefer) to retrace General George Washington's retreat to White Plains in whatever that year was:
Tour does not include lodging, or meals, or transportation, but I will help you fix your flat should you incur one--though I will charge for parts and labor. Here is a typical invoice:
Also, thanks to my new Kickstarter partnership, riders will receive this fashionable pair of on-bike/off-bike activity shorts for their post-ride shopping spree:
I was amused by the video, though how is this look any better than wearing regular cycling shorts?
The simple fact is the only way not to look stupid when you're off the bike is to wear no cycling clothing at all. Of course, this is not always possible, in which case wearing all cycling clothes is better than wearing some cycling clothes. In other words, wearing baggy shorts and a jersey looks even dumber than wearing a full Lycra stretchy suit. At least if you're wearing the whole schmear people have a context, whereas if you're wearing some on bike/off bike hybrid outfit people think there's something wrong with you--though either way you're liable to be the subject of a screed in a conservative tabloid:
I have to admit this is an uncannily accurate portrait of a Fred, though I took issue with this paragraph:
This means boring dinner parties into silence with endless chat about bikes, spending long hours of family time out 'training', embarrassing your children walking around the house in bib shorts (think a mankini with padding around the nether regions) and paying eye-watering sums for obscure items of kit.
What, he doesn't do the legwarmers-with-no-shorts walk!?!