Monday, March 7, 2016

You can't spell "propaganda" without "pro," "pagan," or "da."

Track racing:


Long forgotten except by the British (and, for a fleeting moment, the "hipsters" of the early aughts), this form of competitive cycling was once hugely popular, to which the video I posted this past Friday attests:



And in addition to containing perhaps one of the first recorded instances of one bike dork asking another #whatpressureyourunning:


A number of astute readers also noticed the Nazi fag flying over this Track Friedrich napping in a box:


(Fascists, Freds, and Fedoras: The Golden Age of Track Racing)

Of course it's a jarring image, but let's not forget that this video is from 1937, when the United States was still basking in the Great Depression and the typical spectator at Madison Square Garden was probably hoping the situation in Europe would just sort itself out so they could get back to lunching on beams or whatever the hell they did back then:


(You may have noticed by now my grasp of history is tenuous at best.)

Similarly, who could have known that a mere quarter-century after this photo was taken Donald Trump would be elected President of the United States and begin the chain of events that would ultimately lead to complete global nuclear annihilation*?


Or that Viatcheslav Ekimov was a post-apocalyptic space warrior sent back in time to stop him?

Sure, it seems obvious now, but hindsight is 20/20 and all the rest of it:


(Humanity is so screwed.  #whatvisionyourunning)

*[SPOILER ALERT: Trump is elected, half the US population attempts to flee to Canada, Justin Trudeau attacks us preemptively with the nukes they've been hiding to prevent this from happening.]

Speaking of track racing, UCI President Brian Cookson assured the sport's dozens of fans that they checked for motors at the Track World Championships:


Though he sort of buried the lede there, since the real news was that there's still such a thing as a Track World Championships.

If a tree falls in a forest and there's nobody to hear it does it still make a noise?  Similarly, if a musclebound freak is warming up on rollers and there's nobody to see the landing strip on his head does it really matter if there's a motor in his bike?


Either way, ever since this whole motor thing has started making headlines people have debated what the proper term for using one to cheat should be, and it seems like we're moving towards "technological fraud."  This is because when you think of a "mechanical doper" you think of two-dimensional automaton Levi Leipheimer:


("Hello.  My name is Levi.  I ride bicycles competitively.")

And yes, I realize that as far as cultural references go Levi Leipheimer is about as fresh as Rachel from "Friends:"


(Hello again.  It's still me, Levi.  I am wearing a wig for humorous purposes.)

In any case, the UCI is so concerned about technological motor fraud that they're conducting "invasive tests:"

“We’ve been taking this very seriously since I’ve been president and there have been invasive tests at events,” Cookson told the media at the Worlds in London.

Holy shit, invasive tests?  Where are they keeping these motors?!?


(Wiggins surreptitiously passing Cavendish a motor for rectal insertion.)

That's what you call a "Femke handshake."

Speaking of motors, here's an entertaining video:



SPOILER ALERT: They conclude that a bike with a hidden motor probably wouldn't be very effective for cheating, which of course means that bikes with hidden motors are totally being used for cheating.

Meanwhile, in other technological news, cyclists really should stop trying to advocate for themselves because it's clear that German luxury car manufacturers are going to solve all our problems:



The new Audi A4 is the first car in the world with technology that warns drivers a cyclist is approaching — before getting out of the vehicle.

It is designed to prevent “dooring”, which can have fatal consequences — two reported deaths in the past five years in Victoria alone.

Despite the recent overhauls of bicycle-related fines, only Victoria, NSW and Queensland have a specific offence for “dooring” a cyclist.

Yet it's illegal to ride without a helmet anywhere in Australia, go figure.

A radar hidden behind the rear bumper senses when a cyclist is approaching from 10 to 15 metres away, which triggers a red light to flash near the driver’s door mirror.

A second red light along the top of the door trim also flashes at the same time, as an extra warning for the driver.

The system works up to three minutes after the engine has been switched off, or when the engine is running.

The technology is standard on every version of the new Audi A4 luxury sedan, which went on sale this week priced from $55,500.

Yeah, that ought to work well, because if there's one thing motorists pay attention to it's warning lights.

But don't worry, because it's been tested...by News Corp:

News Corp Australia tested the technology with the help of one of Australia’s top triathletes, Lisa Marangon, from Sydney, who gave it the thumbs up during a training ride this week.

“I wish more cars had this. A lot of drivers don’t look when they get out of their cars,” says Marangon.

Well I'm convinced.

Now that they've tested it on a triathlete, maybe next they'll test it with an actual cyclist.

Lastly, apparently Seattle's bike share program isn't working out very well:


Yet miraculously, Seattle found cash to bail out Pronto, a failed, barely used bike-rental venture that needs $1.4 million in March and a $5 million infusion in 2017. Operating costs will approach $2 million a year — forever — but might be partly covered if ad sales and ridership trends reverse.

Bike-sharing is a neat amenity, but it’s not working in Seattle. It’s too costly for a city that claims it can’t afford the basics. A bailout would undermine the credibility of city leaders, especially since Pronto reeks of insider dealing.

I really should start an urban planning consultancy, because I'd happily charge them over a million bucks to tell them the problem with their bike share program is their stupid helmet law.

Then again, getting rid of the helmet law might actually work, so they'd never go for it.

76 comments:

Ted K. said...

TECHNOLOGY IS A MORE POWERFUL SOCIAL FORCE THAN THE ASPIRATION FOR FREEDOM
125. It is not possible to make a LASTING compromise between technology and freedom, because technology is by far the more powerful social force and continually encroaches on freedom through REPEATED compromises. Imagine the case of two neighbors, each of whom at the outset owns the same amount of land, but one of whom is more powerful than the other. The powerful one demands a piece of the other’s land. The weak one refuses. The powerful one says, “OK, let’s compromise. Give me half of what I asked.” The weak one has little choice but to give in. Some time later the powerful neighbor demands another piece of land, again there is a compromise, and so forth. By forcing a long series of compromises on the weaker man, the powerful one eventually gets all of his land. So it goes in the conflict between technology and freedom.

Matt said...

podium?

ricochet said...

BIKE SCUM WILL REMAIN

N/A said...

Back in 1937, the average steel worker was only 3 foot tall. They were bred for their size so that they would be less affected by the high winds at the heights in which they worked.

JB said...

Eat it, Ted, you doping MF'er.

Two Claws said...

Two claws up!

Anonymous said...

Ka Pow!

Serial Retrogrouch said...

topus X

Anonymous said...

topus X !!

bad boy of the north said...

I wonder how a hidden motor would've been for a bike like the old-timey crescent one in the old-timey ad?i quess the technology just wasn't there back then.perhaps the closest would've been the not-hidden engine whizzer bikes.

NHcycler said...

N/A typed:

"Back in 1937, the average steel worker was only 3 foot tall. They were bred for their size so that they would be less affected by the high winds at the heights in which they worked."

I'm constantly amazed by what I'd missed as I dozed off in high school.


I had to check the photos with "bread." Nowhere did I see any money.

N/A said...

You can't spell "propaganda" without some letters.

Serial Retrogrouch said...

...no, you can't spell 'propaganda' without a 'pro' and a 'pagan'...'da'!!!

NHcycler said...

Hallelujah! You know what this new Audi warning light means?

Because this has to do with the hated bicycle, the auto execs have finally run out of ideas for new features to add to next year's models. Now I can finally shop for a car without the feeling that I'll miss out on the Next Big Thing!

And seeing that Audis in the $55k (and up) price range now have this anti-dooring feature, it should become safer to ride in the wealthier neighborhoods. Can't wait for trickle-down to do its magic.

Schisthead said...

Is there a section in the new book with photoshopping?

Levi is very humorous.

Or is it the wig?

balls™ said...

So, if you're a Spanish pro cyclist on the tail end of your career, you could switch to your "climbing bike" in the middle of a stage and switch back to your other bike before the finish? Do both bikes then get scanned at the end of the stage, or just the one that finishes the race?

...asking for a friend.

ken e. said...

pack fodder. beunos dias!

Anonymous said...

ha ha

..if you watch that whole video, you find out that the hidden motor made the tester a minute slower (up some 'wicked hill' in england) than without it..

wle

NHcycler said...



Schisthead typed:

"Levi is very humorous.

Or is it the wig?"


That's Levi? I thought Rachael had aged a bit...

Donald T. has never said...

I got nuthin'.

Shuf said...

Nazi "fag?"

Grump said...

That picture of Leipheimer in a wig was excellent......Made me laugh.
Don't think that that motorized bike would fool anybody with that waterbottle with a wire coming out of it.

Two Claws said...

I think you got some stuff wrong, who ever heard of a time traveling Eskimo? Is his igloo a tardis?

The Hardboiled Film Noir American Version of Goebbels said...

Take a ganda, at this propaganda!

N/A said...

Eskimos have over 100 different words for "tardis".

N/A said...

If you enter your tardis a second time, you are said to have "retardis".

Anonymous said...

A helment law isn't the only thing that's stupid about Seattle.

N/A said...

"Stupid In Seattle" starred Yahoo Serious in his most poignant role to date, as a single man that loses his goldfish in a freak toilet mishap. He moves to Seattle to get stoned to the bone on their maryjanes.

crosspalms said...

Nazi guy probably thought he was in the six-day bicycle master race.

biek_shares said...

It turns out that Seattle bike share issue sheds light on why a city would want one.


Let's pretend it costs $1 million annually to run. They trade biek real estate for $1 million/yr or some other number. The sweetener is State/Federal subsidies that turns the biek share system into a net-positive for the municipality.

At 29:00 in there is a lone critic that claims NYC's biek share system is entirely private. Not true.

http://www.seattlechannel.org/CityInsideOut?videoid=x61789


All very interesting.

Donald Strumpet said...

Fly your freak (National Socialist counts) fag!

Fausto said...

Another great moment in Australian law enforcement. Apparently they take shoe color very seriously.

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/taxi-driver-fined-for-wearing-brown-shoes-not-the-proper-uniform-cop-says/news-story/48bbd379b2f674fc856b98134d13e740

Very Slim Pickins said...

"does it really matter if there's a motor in his bike?"

Forget about putting a motor in the bike. Back in the day, until the 50's anyway, there were time trial races that used motorcycles for each bike rider. There was some kind of roller gizmo attached to the rear of the motorcycle to prevent the bike rider from crashing if he touched the rear of the motorcycle.

Very Slim Pickins said...

"Trump is elected, half the US population attempts to flee to Canada, Justin Trudeau attacks us preemptively with the nukes they've been hiding to prevent this from happening."

One presumes that Babble will temporarily house any American refugees who arrive at her door with a bicycle.

Pathetic Old Cyclist said...

I'm sure that your standard, run of the mill, high end Audi driver really doesn't give a fuck about dooring cyclists. My guess, the see thee light and have no I-fuckin'-dea what that light means.

McFly said...

If the motor kit comes with a bottom bracket that DOES NOT CLICK LIKE A DAMN BB30 then I will happily buy it and toss the motor.

Tim Wilcox said...

And speaking of motors and the UCI, do they require some sort of licensing for derny riders? How does one get a job as a derny rider? Looks fun...

Dooth said...

What a coincidence...the Pink Pussy Cat Boutique is having a sale on rectal insertion motors, so I've heard.

NourskSiklist said...

Ach, collected by Ze broom wagon again. Typical of automakers, they've made an expensive high tech solution to a low tech problem. Instead, appreciate that it's not the dusty highway of post apocalyptic Australia, look in the mirror for other traficants, then open door. Unless your mirror was nicked by the War Boys. The Na zits also tried mechanical doping, but with the tech of time, the engine and batteries (U-boot provenance) required a thirty kilogram trailer. The burly SS-men insisted it was just water bottles, but no dice. Grrrrr! I think beam lunching could be the next big thing in Brooklyn, just the thing for novelty and excitement. Investors, get in early.

Anonymous said...

One of the main problems with the Seattle bike share is that it started out in debt. A large chunk of its operating budget is spent just servicing debt.

trama said...

Helmet laws and bike shares go together like hotbuttered popcorn and sand

Can't wait for that earthquake/volcano/pyroclastics/lahar/tsunami to reset the waterfront property uses.

Anonymous said...

You're a doper

Anonymous said...

No ostrich? I remember when this site used to be relevant...

DB said...

In my investigating where to move if Trump wins, Canada doesn't come close to first according to HSBC bank. Looks like we'll be in Singapore, Sweden, Germany and Bahrain before we cross our northern border.

CommieCanuck said...

I think Nazi fag was referring to his cigarettes. I had a friend from the UK who liked to announce in bars that he was going out back to suck on a fag. "no, no, not what you think, mate, I only like the short slim ones".

We are already preparing for an influx of American refugees post Trump, stocking up on XXXL T-shirts and khaki shorts...I may sponsor a few to clean up my lawn. So cute with their lethal weapons, we will be providing plastic toy ones as pacifiers while they integrate into CDN society and learn to drink really shitty coffee and drink milk from bags.

MILK BAGS

(We still doing knuckle tats?)

JLRB said...

Does the new book include pictures of the blog's featured guests, like Levi, non-plussed, recumbababe, time-traveling Fed, with magnetic pieces to add, like wigs, comment bubbles, etc.? Since its in pre-order mode not too late to add them....

babble on said...

Heh, and when I lived in the UK, and way more than once, I overheard the phrase "Bum a fag, love?"

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

If a cyclist is doored in NSW Australia, is the cyclist automatically guilty of violating the 1 meter rule?

Let's see the 5 years retired champeen biekist now ride up that Old Bristol Hill on a bike with no motor and see how much longer it takes him than it did on the biek with the motor.

If the motor will turn its 80-whatever rpm in a gear where the motorless rider can't spin at the same 80-whatever rpm it is a help, just like having domestiques or a lead-out train.

I always forget what year I parked my Tardis in, any idea how I can keep better track of it?

Freddy Murcks said...

Isn't 'milk bags' a euphemism for women's breasts? Sort of like 'fun bags', but a little more clinical.

Spokey said...

great to get back to the blog and commentariat.

i really missed ted. as least as much as i miss my appendix.

i used to refuse to ride with people who didn't wear helments. didn't want to have to go back and tell their wife/hubby, girl friend, mother that they were currently lying in the hospital with tubes coming out and drooling.

but now i don't give a fuck-o. besides i decided bad news was a job for the coppers.

if the duck becomes prez and half the the peeps leave? seems kinda stupid. that means that some of those fleeing to america's dandruff voted for him.

if trump gets the nomination and picks clinton as a running mate i guess the entire country will empty out. So we'll become a leporid paradise.

Roille Figners said...

LOL: "stocking up on XXXL T-shirts and khaki shorts"

Pathetic Old Cyclist said...

Spokey,

Just when the prospect of a Trump or Hillary WH seem immenent, yours is the first that actually mentioned to possibility of both of them on the ticket. THAT is some scary - ass thinking!

I also used to do the " I don't ride with people who don't wear helmets". But now i don't care what you wear. if you crash and burn, there's someone I might actually beat.

With all this talk of running up to Canada after the election, I took some time to check out how difficult it is to emigrate to Canada. It's not easy. They prefer that you speak either of the "oficial languages" ( English / French) fluently. There's a test. Before acquiring citizenship, there's another test. it's not easy to become a Canadien citizen or get Permanent Residue status, but it is preferred if you have job or at lest a self sustaining career. Jobs are tight in The great White North, with the exception of Ontario. It's also fucking cold. The don't give away rights of citizenship or benefits quite as freely as freely as Canada's Low Hanging Scrotum to the South. Still, it couldn't hurt to drop Bab's name.

It's off to Canada I go

the Jimboner said...

I went to see the Trump in NC today, he looked tired and bored, the crowd only cheered when protesters were tossed out or he bashed on "little Marco" or "that liar Cruz". He did the Heil Donald pledge and assured the crowd that his right hand was strong. My eleven year old daughter was nonplussed throughout the entire affair.

crosspalms said...

I like Canada, but I think I'm permanent residue in Chicago, where I just shook propaganda hard enough to get pagoda and panda out of it.

Isn't Trump kind of Rob Ford before the drug videos came out?

DB said...

Commie:
It's Cargo shorts. Not Khaki shorts.
See you in a few months.

DB said...

Crosspalms:
Saw two caterpillars and a fly today. Put the grill on the deck, raked the yard, washed the car.
Aired up the tires, went for a shake-down spin.
All is good. It's spring.

Roille Figners said...

Letle's Rachel 'do was his makeover for the 90s. A few years after his seminal Letle Viride debut, the excesses of the era began to catch up with everyone, and it became harder to keep the band together. He watched the needle take another man. Then the guitarist shot himself in the face after proclaiming "It's not loaded, see, look." Then the drummer exploded (again). At that point Letle was just going through the motions, and most of the songwriting and studio decisions fell to his co-songwriter, keyboardist John "Fuzzy Nuts" Bauchredner. Amid slumping record sales and increasing critical hostility, and desperate for a hit, Letle was taken in, like many others, by disco's siren song. This resulted in a string of three even more fiercely maligned, tragicomically bad disco records that only sounded good when you'd snorted a quantity of cocaine for which the average listener would've had to save up two months' wages. For most of the 80s Letle was in and out of rehab and didn't produce anything musically except a guest appearance on Ace Frehley's "Frehley's Comet" record. A bitter feud had also taken root with Fuzzy Nuts. It would be a few more years before he would clean up his act enough to attempt a comeback. Through Frehley he had met legendary producer Jim "Bent Bones" Bendenboens. Bones impressed on Letle the importance of updating his sound - and his look - for the new audience, and insisted on the most modern, flashiest studio techniques. Letle was unimpressed, to say the least. However, just in time, along came "grunge" with its lo-fi aesthetic and its disdain for high-falutin' production values. In this new crop of musicians Letle saw his kindred spirits. Inspired by this and the TV show Friends, he grew his hair out into a Rachel, made peace with Fuzzy Nuts, put together a band, and recorded most of Letle Viride II a.k.a. the "Chartreuse Album" in two weeks of squeaky-clean sobriety with nothing more than Folgers crystals.

DB said...

Whoa: Maria Sharapova failed a drug test.

Roille Figners said...

POC - With the Canadas I have the unfair advantage of a Canadian-born parent, hence am "already a citizen," at least in theory. I've been "intending to" fill out the paperwork for like 8 years now...

babble on said...

I think milk bags are only in Ontario and Alberta... or at least I've not seen one here in BC in the decades I've called it home. But boobies are here in spades. And sometimes in the summer some girls even let 'the twins' out to play.

Starbucks is ubiquitous, though, so if that's your cuppa, you'll adapt quickly enough. Too true, though: it's really not easy to get permanent residence. Not even if you're married to a Canadian. I know from personal experience. The 18 month wait, endless paperwork, tests and fees were enough to send me and my British husband back to the UK for the birth of our son in the early naughties.

Anonymous said...

Have not read the story on Sharapova, but...

My working assumption is that professional athletes use the available drugs that make them better. If nobody is getting caught, and there is no serious enforcement, and then nearly everybody is using, or at least heavily using to recover from injury. Where there is advantage to off-season weight training, there is a bigger advantage to off-season weight training with drugs. The more money, the more drugs. The more drug benefit, the more drugs.



wishiwasmerckx said...

Sharapova claims that she took this drug for like 10 years before it was recently added to tennis's banned list, but her purported justification for taking it seemed a little thin.

Tennis's drug code has always been loosey-goosey. Interestingly enough, Nadal's fall from the tennis elite coincided almost exactly with the introduction of more advanced drug testing protocols. Draw what conclusion from that coincidence as you will.

Lastly, while Operation Puerto certainly dominated the Cycling news for a good long while, it is easy to forget that Fuentes also worked with tennis players who have to this day never been named.

wishiwasmerckx said...

...aNd wHEn I tooK sTEroiDS, tHe onLy siDE EffEct wAS rAnDoM cApitALIZatioN.

Frickus Rungus said...

I remember getting bags of milk from the grocery and really sturdy cases of beer from the government liquor store back in the 70's when we visited eastern Canada. The beer boxes were so nice that my whole family used them as suitcases in our camper. I would always get excited waiting for a new case of beer to come rolling down the conveyor belt from the secure government warehouse in the back of the store. No wonder I drink too much as an adult...

dancesonpedals said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BPsucks said...

Thing about Seattle, the bike share is a municipal endeavor, supported by people who actually care about urban cycling. The helmet law was enacted by the county, the heads of which are elected by areas including Belleview-home of bottomless parking-and Skykomish-butt fuck of big truck nowhere.

Pedantic Pissant said...

>Yet it's illegal to ride without a helmet anywhere in Australia, go figure.

Actually in the Northern Territory you can ride a bicycle without a helmet. But most Australians "think" the NT isn't really part of Australia and doesn't count so their absolute unwavering faith in all things helmet related isn't affronted by this uncomfortable abomination that could threaten their belief system.

(I use "think" in its loosest sense - Australian think is an oxymoron).

DB said...

Wonder if anyone has ever been accused of doping in curling?

Bruce said...

I thinks you mean an Aussiemoron.

BamaPhred said...

its a fact that drivers will ignore the bicycle rider warning light. I have an emissions control warning light glowing on Ol Missus' death machine as we speak. And I don't care. Cause she didn't tighten the $&@:;-/ gas cap, again. Somehow, it's my fault.

Anonymous said...

@Bruce is there any other type?

bieks said...

So glad I live outside Vancouver city limits. Condolences to Babs for having to help foot Gregor's bill on the upcoming bike share. Gotta wear a helment if you're gonna crash and burn. Hope those paper liners are flame retardant.

McFly said...

I was reading an article about Maria Sharipova where one of her sponsors Tag Heuer had dropped her and a Tag Heuer ad is right there in the middle of it. Stay classy Tag.

Bradley Chodos-Irvine said...

Actually the track world championships are really entertaining. The madison race that Cavendish/Wiggins teamed up to win is a crazy 200 lap race that makes the start of any "gran fondo" look mild in comparison. Great Britain is big on track cycling - lots of good riders come up through the program.

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