Monday, January 25, 2016

Not sure if you heard, but it snowed here.

Well we had ourselves quite a blizzard here in New York.  It was even bigger than the Great Blizzard of Eighteen Hunnert and Eighty-Eight, which of course I remember firsthand:


When you're a grown-up blizzards are mostly just a pain in the ass, but you know who loves them?  Young children and "bros:"
You don't tag me in that tweet?

What am I, chopped liver?

Anyway, if you're looking for an indicator as to the severity of this past weekend's storm, consider that it was so powerful they postponed New York City's first-ever fat bike race:


Yeah, that's right.  The fat bike race was closed due to...snow, which I thought was like the whole point of a fat bike in the first place:



Of course it's tempting to relish this irony, which is why I'm doing it, but at the same time the promoters had their reasons, and there's a difference between racing through snow and racing in the middle of an historic blizzard during the period of maximum wind and snow-dumpage.  Plus, as it turned out, there was a travel ban and a transit shutdown and all the rest of it, meaning if you got there you might not be able to get back home, not to mention the fact that a New York Post headline about how a bunch of novice mountain bikers froze to death in a Queens park doesn't do anybody any good:


In other words I was glad they postponed because I'd been thinking of heading down on the Pine Mountain 1 and this saved me from having to make an excuse for looking out the window Saturday morning, mumbling "Fuck that," pulling the covers back over my head, and staying home.

Hey, we've got to give the people in Minneapolis something to feel superior about:


("Call that a blizzard?!?  I'd have raced my fat bike and then spent the afternoon on Rockaway Beach in a thong.")

Speaking of blizzards, like any formidable weather event each one brings a lesson along with it.  Consider the aforementioned Blizzard of 1888, which taught us that the city was criss-crossed with too many fucking wires:


See, back then the entire city looked like a college student's power strip, and the resulting outages and downed utility poles made people realize they had to tidy that crap up and bury those lines.

In retrospect it seems obvious.

So what's the equivalent of all those wires today?  You know, an everyday convenience that's just some foul weather away from becoming a complete disaster and an utter clusterfuck?  Something that really ought to be addressed before the next shitshow?  Well, here's a hint:

A 40-mile backup on the turnpike on Friday forced thousands of people in cars, buses and tractor-trailers to sleep on the highway. Hundreds of emergency responders and National Guard members worked from Friday to Sunday clearing snow and providing fuel, food and water to stranded people.

Yes, of course I'm talking about cars.  However, I wouldn't expect anything to change anytime soon, because there is nothing more American than driving right into an apocalyptic weather event:

Among those stranded were more than a dozen buses of Catholic high school and college students who were returning from the March for Life in Washington, an annual anti-abortion demonstration.

A stranded bus full of Catholic high school and college students on their way home from an anti-abortion demonstration?

By this time next year all the babies conceived while they were stranded on the bus will be about three months old, so hopefully they check the weather beforehand and bring plenty of diapers and bottles with them.

Meanwhile, last Friday I mentioned the shifter cable on my WorkCycles Fr8 had frozen on me, and a reader was kind enough to inform me that I'm not alone:

This experience also demonstrates something about Amsterdam cyclists: Not only do they store their bikes on the street, they also ride in ALL conditions including snow. Of course they do; How else would they get to work, take the kids to school, do the groceries and visit their friends?

Why that's a silly question.  In a car of course!  Not only are cars a symbol of Freedom™, but they're also impervious to bad weather:


Sure, when you grow up the novelty of snow mostly wears off, but I don't think I'll ever get tired of watching assholes who think they're driving the Snowpiercer getting stuck in it.

And of course nobody relishes snowstorms like the smuggies:


For the uninitiated, sneckdowns are neckdowns created by driving patterns in melting snow or slush. Sneckdowns highlight excess asphalt that could be repurposed for streetscape improvements to slow motor vehicle traffic and make walking safer.

I have mixed feelings about this.  On one hand, yes, the snow does help underscore how much public space we gratuitously allocate to cars.  Furthermore, there's nothing quite like watching idiots struggling with said cars in the snow to emphasize how pathetic our dependence on them truly is.

On the other hand, yes, the first day or two after a blizzard may indeed be a magical time when motor vehicles are immobilized and children may play freely in the streets, but if it were to go on for much longer and the Park Slope Food Co-op and the Whole Foods in Gowanus were to both run out of provisions due to impassable roads I guarantee the smuggies would be the very first people to turn on each-other and resort to cannibalism.

But sure, point taken about the "sneckdowns," which may be the only portmanteau more annoying than "brifter."

Penultimately, here's Carlos Sastre recovering from a blood transfusion:


And lastly, addled cycling commentator Phil Liggett now claims to be the Dr. Frankenstein to Lance Armstrong's Frankenstein's Monster:



Speaking directly to the New Zealand Herald, Liggett said: "I built him up. I created him into a great cyclist, and he was, even though he took drugs.

"On the other hand, I feel hurt and cheated that we made him look better than he should've and turned him into a star."

He really shouldn't blame himself.

If anything, thanks to his commentary I've slept though countless Tour de France stages.

83 comments:

Bryan Bracy said...

podiums for everyone.

Anonymous said...

podiation.

Ted K. said...

106. FIFTH PRINCIPLE. People do not consciously and rationally choose the form of their society. Societies develop through processes of social evolution that are not under rational human control.

Anonymous said...

Ted K. is a fanboy of criminals and federal prisoners

Anonymous said...

Where's all this yellow snow that people talk about?

N/A said...

When Wildcat finally buys his fatbike, he can curate snow rides to the GowAnus cAnal.

Anonymous said...

here

JLRB said...

Are you crazy posting during a snow emergency? Staff off the information superhighway until the plow trucks are done earning overtime

Anonymous said...

Back in the pack.

cycle

Bryan said...

Had some flurries down here in SC! Was enough for me to consider Saturday a snow day and do nothing at all. I really should get out and ride soon...

streepo said...

scranus

Spokey said...


top 10 discounting ted

Spokey said...

damn too slow at the hunt and peckering

bad boy of the north said...

welcome to the cow anus whole foods.artisanal snow for everyone.

Anonymous said...

Rapha!

Spokey said...


i still like phil

Chazu said...

Weehoo!

bad boy of the north said...

thanks,dop,for the congrats.i'm a hair north of put.our little area received a mere dusting.hearts go out to those that Jonas dumped on.

bad boy of the north said...

is phil really legit?

Serial Retrogrouch said...

..."On the other hand, I feel hurt and cheated that we made him look better than he should've and turned him into a star."

...I thought more apt feelings would be 'ashamed and sorry'

BikeSnobNYC said...

Serial Retrogrouch,

Phil Liggett's job is to create a narrative around a sporting event, I don't think he has anything to apologize for.

--Wildcat Etc.

Anonymous said...

SNEK DOWN
If anyone should pose topless on a bike in times square let it be recumbabe.

P. Bateman said...

i like phil's commentary during the tour de francais. i think his analysis of castles and aristocracy is quite on point.

dcee604 said...

Wow, that's a lot of snow you guys got! I'm up here in Canada, and it's a nice sunny day today! And you all thought Canada is covered in ice and snow!

Dorothy Rabinowitz said...

I'm all stuck up in this snowdrift...any of you fruit cakes ready for an old-fashioned skankdown?

Wrench Monkey said...

There's something about the Minneapolis winter guy that reminds me of the bibshorts guy...

N/A said...

@Wrench Monkey:

Is it the cocksure way they walk into a room?

Grateful Fred said...

I am forced to drive a snowplow as part of my job. I clear the bike lanes and bury the parked cars.

Wrench Monkey said...

@ N/A:

That can't be it, because neither one reminds me of the Lone Wolf.

Stephen Cuomo said...

Please make an exception and be nice to Phil, he's created so much enthusiasm for cycling; the doped sort AND otherwise.

CommieCanuck said...

Congrats for surviving the Snowpocalypse.
Phil Ligget has got nothing to worry about, the internet did a much more profound job of fluffing Lance's accomplishments. For about 5 years, there was simply no way an American team could be dirty in the sport of those filthy Yurupeens, most of which are not even Christian Fundamentalists, and thus have no moral center. Of course the group that did the most Lance-fluffing was the regulatory groups and sponsors who made millions off his ass, then were first in line to throw him under L'autobus.
But, as usual, the last to cash in big was Oprah.

Serial Retrogrouch said...

...I was only saying that based on his sentence (I only know about Legit through your blog). He lumps himself with the herd of those who 'made him [LA] look better than he should've'. There's an admission of guilt in there, no? If so, why then feel hurt and cheated...

[I get the cheating part from LA leading everyone on, and how now EVERY damn person who ever mentioned his name feels cheated and hurt]

Scranus

wishiwasmerckx said...

Phil has nothing to apologize for? Try telling that to the "colored boys" in the peloton.

wishiwasmerckx said...

...also, since this blog always manages to circle around to its rich heritage, car cake photos, please...

dop said...

While all the other NBC announcers covering the 1996 Olympics Womens' MTB had sawdust coming out of their mouths as Paola Pezzo's boobs bounced to a gold medal in a jogbra on a bumby course, Phil gave the call on the homestretch:

"Here she comes, the sultry Paola Pezzo, she'll win the first womens' etc"

Victor Kaminski said...

vsk said ...

Aw man, just as I was gonna do some laps at Prospect...

Just another storm of the century.

vsk

JLRB said...

Stephen Cuomo @ 1:05 - there is a kind other than doped?

P. Bateman said...

@Dop - just had to search engine Paola Pezzo. and i'm pretty sure i can now enter any room very cocksure. she is quite yummy. i would love to check what PSI she was running if you know what i mean.

photos of her on an old gary fisher - bike looks cool as hell too.

Spokey said...

@PB

my recollect is that phil doesn't know crap about the castles. i think paul s is the castle maven.

P. Bateman said...

wonder what CJ would make of her outdated geometry and hardtail fisher bike?

i for one love her geometry and hardtail.

Captain Oblivious said...


WhaT iS a cJ?

P. Bateman said...

a cunnilingus job. duh.

leroy said...

Dear Mr. Anon 11:10 AM --

I don't know where all the yellow snow is, but my dog wrote a poem.

He also borrowed money for a business opportunity that hasn't panned out.

Freddy Murcks said...

Fuck it. I am checking Strava.

Freddy Murcks said...

Literally. I just checked Strava regarding this morning's MTB snow ride and I am just as mediocre as ever. Oh well, wouldn't change a thing.

dop said...

That ride in 96 was pre-youtube, or it would have gone viral. It ran late at night, so it seems to have seen seen by middle-aged freds up with colicky babies. (sample of one).

Aside from the visuals, she ran a great race. She had a fall, and ran her bike up a hill rather than start awkwardly in mid trail. She had visited Atlanta before the Olympics & realized that she would have to ride the way she trained, (shirt open in a sports bra) when the temp was 90 & the humidity matched it.

Then she won it again 4 years later in Sydney.


Sorry. That last picture had no boobs

dop said...

The stills don't do the live ride justice. . That was a bumpy course.

Anonymous said...

i wish phil could be replaced by the GCN guys.

ChamoisJuice said...

I was never really that hot for Paola Pezzo. She's famous for winning the olympics with her boobs hanging out of her open jersey. She's not a bad looking woman, but she's no Emily Batty.

The bike she won in Athens on, was a Gary Fisher, identical to the Trek OCLV frame of the day, with the standard/fucked up geo 71/73, short tt, long stem. A few years later, GF would be the first large company to push longer tt/shorter stem bikes, "genesis geometry". And 29"ers. Dooder has questionable fashion sensibilities, but he was ahead of the game on geo and wheel size.

My favorite XC racer eye candy from that era, was that Diamondback body paint poster.
Katrin Bruel

David Olson said...

Snob,

Thought of you yesterday as we were digging out the car that bank owns and that we don't have to drive right away, but possibly at some point MIGHT drive before the melting started (and we didn't want to make it angry). And so many others doing the same thing on our block left me agape, nay, gobsmacked, at all the energy we put in for absolutely no reason. Did I over-comma?

P. Bateman said...

hmmm...didnt realize the olympic mountain bike course is still open in atlanta. wish i had my old univega ready to ride. will have to hit that up next time i'm up visiting the fam-damily.

Roille Figners said...

As I was reading the words that the fat bike race was canceled for snow, I already knew it had to be because of an insurance company. We wouldn't want to do anything the insurance companies don't like! They might have to actually cover a loss, which everybody knows is NOT THEIR JOB! Insurance companies are for collecting premiums only!!

Captain Obvious said...

CJ - Your ability to perseverate about stuff that nobody gives a flying fuck about is truly remarkable. Assuming that you have friends, which I kind of doubt, I am sure that they really tire of hearing you tell the same pointless stories over and over and over and over and over....

wats7 said...

Katrin Bruel? Who are you kidding? That looks more like Kristin Wiig doing her Target cashier impression.

bad boy of the north said...

wow,didn't know that dibnpjt kvjdf had been commenting here at least three years ago.you guys sure have a long history.i purposely made their name cryptic.

caPt scrAnus said...


CJ

Is that anything like MockingJay? Because I really liked that Jenny Lawrence in those movies.

dop said...

so HAL is IBM?

bad boy of the north said...

yep......dop.yep.

Anonymous said...

It's like Ray J. Johnson. "Now you can call me Ray, or you can call me J..."

dop said...

Oh dear. A new treasure trove from Florence Colorado

Dooth said...

I prefer sauerkraut and mustard on my irony. But relish will do.

David Bowman said...

"so HAL is IBM?"

Yes. Start with HAL and shift each letter one place forward.

Anonymous said...

Bring on the sneckdown and carcake porn.

bad boy of the north said...

perhaps Watson would work?same thing with ufe l.since he was trending today.

bad boy of the north said...

or zoom speak.....people of a certain age may remember the show.

BamaPhred said...

Snob's in rare form today. When does the cabin fever set in?

Roille Figners said...

Of all the shitty little mistakes that get my panties in a bunch, my new favorite is the one where someone turns you "into" the authorities like Ted's brother did.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Roille, snitches get stitches.

A Descendant of King Louie said...

No dumping on PL. If it weren't for him and Paul S we'd never get to hear the history behind the Chateau porn shots, PL: "and this is the Chateau where King Louie would call for a royal mount and a "lady" (har, har) of the court would be lead to the royal mounting chamber"., PS: Yes Phil, and sometimes more than one at a time were lead to the royal mounting chamber."

Anonymous said...

RF: "Of all the shitty little mistakes that get my panties in a bunch, my new favorite is the one where someone turns you "into" the authorities like Ted's brother did. January 25, 2016 at 7:52 PM"

Come on, didn't you ever want to be turned into an authority figure, like a fireman or a cop?

Cold Feet said...

In preparation for the blizzard, I put a pair of snow-shoes in the hallway closet by the front door but when I needed them, they had melted.

Anonymous said...

CC at 105: Of course Opera cashed in big because she is big. Or as Grouch once said to a waiter "Sea bass, why you've never seen Sea Bass until you've seen mama's bass in the morning".

Anonymous said...

"SNEK DOWN
If anyone should pose topless on a bike in times square let it be recumbabe. January 25, 2016 at 12:23 PM"

Let it be Babble.

Matt said...

I live in Saint Paul, right next to Minneapolis. It actually doesn't snow that much here. The last time we had anything like your past weekend's snowfall was the 28" Halloween Blizzard of 1991. Five years ago the Metrodome roof collapsed under..,17" of snow, and that was a top ten blizzard. We don't get the snow, we just get cold as fuck.

JLRB said...

From DOP's Ted K update

"The papers reveal that Kaczynski remains strongly opposed to technology. Yahoo News reports that he is not allowed access to the Internet, but he still solicits email addresses from letter writers to share with others as part of his efforts to create an anti-technology movement."

Waitagodamminute - then the posts here aren't real? It's like the Lance doped thing all over again

Victor Kaminski said...

vsk said ...

Don't know if this was put up earlier...

https://momentummag.com/south-dakota-bill-would-require-cyclists-to-dismount-for-passing-cars/

Find a fucking car and get off your bike for it ...

vsk

JLRB said...

Didn't know this until now, Trump's dad is a Fred

Dooth said...

Three to four foot snow banks on Manhattan streets and wet sloshy streets is nothing to the senior citizen I just saw zooming up third avenue...while I'm downing drinks at the Continental.

I'm jones-ing to ride.

bike bum said...

cant think of anything

James Barker said...

In reference to the Clog Jockeys riding in bad weather - http://www.aviewfromthecyclepath.com/2016/01/sometimes-winter-weather-is-so-bad-that.html

Crocodile Dungarees said...

Car collisions with Kangaroos are epidemic down under. Shouldn't Roos be required to wear helmets?

some guy from upstate said...

Nice to know that the organizers still worry about what the insurance company thinks given the usual "if the organizer leaps out from behind a tree and hacks you to death with an axe, it's still not our fault" wording in the typical bike race waiver.

Also, "an historic"? Those lime-eaters at the Brooks blog are wearing off on you.

Hope you managed to dig out ok. Not a speck on the ground here in the capital.

kajal sharma said...

after reading the contents my major doubt are clear now