Wednesday, March 2, 2016

You can't spell "salmon" without sal, mon.

Morning in New York City.  The wind carried the faint scent of impending spring along with its usual halitosis.  I gazed across the rivulet of diarrhea that separates Manhattan island from the mainland, its untreated fecal matter being vigorously churned by collegiate Water Freds:


See?  Water Freds:


Crossing the lift bridge and alighting upon Manhattan I followed a bus festooned with Vision Zero propaganda:


That's Spanish for "Bus drivers should be allowed to run over small children without fear of arrest:"


Then I broke down the Brompton and defected to the Alpha train:


I passed the rest of the day as though in a dream:


It's depressing to consider that if they were making "Pee-wee's Big Adventure" today the studio probably wouldn't release it unless he was wearing a helmet:


Helmetless cycling is right up there with smoking when it comes to stuff you're not supposed to show people doing anymore.

Incidentally, by far the most common bike-related dream I have is that the bike race is about to start and I'm rushing to put on my bib shorts but I can't because I'm caught in the Lycra like it's a spider web or some sort of super-sticky goo:


(Okaaay...)

If you've ever tried to put on your cycling attire while you're still wet from a shower then you are familiar with this frustrating sensation.  In fact I'm surprised nobody's ever held a contest to see who can get "kitted up" while wet the fastest.  They could do it right after the trackstanding event and right before the Brompton fold-off.

Anyway, in the evening I more or less reversed my commute.  It was the usual fair-weather shitshow.  You know, drivers blocking the protected bike lane even though there's parking available five feet over:


And food delivery professionals salmoning at high speed:


("Whoosh!")

And idiots just hanging out in the bike lane with the car door open while they mash their stubby fingers against their fucking smartphones:


I like to imagine that, thanks to smartphones, the morons of the world are interconnected by a worldwide spoodge glob of stupidity just like the one ensnaring He-Man up there.

Speaking of food delivery professionals, while I'm mostly against salmoning (I did invent the term, after all), I tend to cut the food delivery people some slack.  The truth is these people work hard, and there is a way to salmon without being obtrusive about it.  So as long as they're not getting in anybody else's way I'm fine with it.

However, yesterday evening, one particular food delivery person took his salmoning too far.  In fact he was coming right at me in the bike lane.  For a moment I considered swerving out of his path.  After all, I was on the diminutive Brompton, and he was on some sort of pizza delivery tank complete with a front rack aimed right at my clown bike's steering stalk:


But then I decided "No!  I will stand my ground!  No salmon shall oust me from the bike lane that is rightfully mine!"

And so I looked right at him unwaveringly, and even my ridiculous bicycle could not undermine the magnitude of my determination.  At the very last moment the salmon swerved, and as I turned to watch him I noted with glee that he was forced to plant both feet on the street in order to regain his balance.

That's right, I'd very nearly felled him through sheer force of will.

Yes, for all the bike lanes and other cutesy amenities you've still got to ride furiously in New York City if you want to survive--though in New South Wales, Australia riding furiously will cost you $425:


I'm proud to report that between my fury and my lack of a helmet yesterday's ride would have cost me nearly one thousand of your Australian dollars, or "koala foreskins" as they're colloquially known.

By the way, it appears you can also incur a $106 fine for riding a bicycle "in incorrect position."  To this end, police in New South Wales have been trained in the latest bike-fitting technique, and if your position is not set up for maximum efficiency and power transfer then you will be charged accordingly.



Meanwhile, yesterday a commenter mentioned Vancouver's planned bike share program, and here's the burning question:

Yes.

Yes it will.

Nevertheless, instead of doing something sensible like getting rid of the stupid law, they've come up with some ridiculous disposable liner system that works like those ass gaskets you find in public restrooms:

As another major feature of the smart bikes, each bike will be equipped with a basket that holds a helmet, replacing the previous plan to store reusable helmets inside vending machines at each bike share

The company’s smart technology and helmet-in-basket design significantly reduces capital and operational costs given the system’s ability to allow for smaller bike stations and the elimination of any need for costly helmet vending machines and return receptacles, as previously proposed by Motivate.

Instead, each bike will be equipped with a basket that holds a helmet that will contain liners for people who will want to use it for hygiene purposes. The helmets, purposely designed by Bell Helmets for Vancouver’s bike share system, will be free for bike share users and maintenance crews will service the helmets on a daily basis.

Pathetic.  These idiotic helmet workarounds just go to show how these laws serve no real purpose and are basically religious/superstitious in nature, no different from a ritualistic diet or refraining from performing arbitrary tasks on the the Sabbath--though I suppose "helmet service technician" does look good on your resume.

(By the way, when I was in Vancouver I didn't even realize they had a helmet law, and I did manage to ride for over seven minutes without being tackled by an officer of the law.)

In other bicycle safety news, Knog now has a Kickstarter for its interpretation of the bicycle bell:



It's called the "Oi:"


Which should not be confused with the "Oy:"


You saw that one coming.

If nothing else, we've clearly entered into a golden age of bicycle bell design, and I've still got that fancy Spurcycle bell on my bike:


Sure, everybody ignores it, but the delightful chime makes me feel better about the fact that they won't let me pass.

I also ring it whenever I encounter antisemitism:


Oy.

Lastly, via a reader named Tim, here's a real beauty from the Portland Craigslist:


I'm assuming those are slingshots, which are a lot more effective than a bell when it comes to alerting people to your presence.

91 comments:

Ted K. said...

123. If you think that big government interferes in your life too much NOW, just wait till the government starts regulating the genetic constitution of your children. Such regulation will inevitably follow the introduction of genetic engineering of human beings, because the consequences of unregulated genetic engineering would be disastrous. [19]

Note 19. (Paragraph 123) Just think an irresponsible genetic engineer might create a lot of terrorists.

21st Century Cave Art said...

Podium!

dancesonpedals said...

podio

N/A said...

Brooks' failed campaign: "on the rivulet of diarrhea"

Anonymous said...

TOOP TEEN

Anonymous said...

I miss bikeslut

21st Century Cave Art said...

Podium!

ken e. said...

zzzz... present!

N/A said...

I read on the internets that BSNYC,INC. is partnering with Specialized to develop an anti-salmon bike. It will have a full windscreen on it, so that its rider does not get splattered with Chinese food.

clyde said...

TOPPUS XX ? Scranus ? Left coast winner ?

Anonymous said...

Yo! (Yo! is way more useful than Oy!) Top X!

clyde said...

Sorry in my delight at making the top 10
I overachieved on the number of X's

le Correcteur said...

I've got to stop reading; I'd be top ten if I hadn't read, watched, and so on! And now, perhaps the dreaded thirteenth!

dancesonpedals said...

Now that I've read it, this phrase stands out..

If you've ever tried to put on your cycling attire while you're still wet from a shower then you are familiar with this frustrating sensation.

On a number of occasions I've climbed out of the Hudson and tried to put on socks & bike shoes quickly. (It's called, 'Transition one'). It helps to have a spare bidon to spray the salty river water off your feet. I know the 'experts' will ride without socks & jump on the bike with their shoes clipped in first, but I don't want to be part of anyone's highlight reel.

Larry and Heather said...

Slingshots? Check out this slingshot
http://redkiteprayer.com/2016/03/nahbs-2016-part-iii-category-awards/
Scroll down to see the matching shoes, helmet and (WTF?) slingshot

Red Green said...

Hey! That's my bike.
And those sling shots are an excellent way to make drivers aware of your presence on the road.

JB said...

I think those slingshots could be a gun rack. Or a paddle rack for a water Fred sled.

Cuckoolemon said...

wear a helmet!!!

Two Claws said...

Two claws up!

...and dancesonpedals, coming out of the Hudson, it's probably not just salt in the water...

Anonymous said...

Gun rack, for sure.

wats7 said...

Two things: (1). A big resounding YES for the bike bell girl in white. Nice legs. And (2) Since when does a company who is already in the business of making bikey type things start a kickstart program in order to make more bikey type things?

wats7 said...

And a p.s. It sure looks like a snail to me.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

So what was the reason for said commute?

Grump said...

You should have yelled ..."Ramming Speed", as the food delivery guy approached.
(If you had a set of large drums mounted on your bars, you could have beat them, to increase your cadence)
PS. You need to cut off at least a foot off of that quill stem. That, and a picture of you on the "altered" bike, in a long sleeve skinsuit, would make "Photo of the Year".

Anonymous said...

I've noticed at the movies that people smoking in the flick will earn you a PG rating; suppose biking wihtout a helmet will get you there too? In that case if a movie showed a helmetless rider smoking on a fixie would it be rated "X"? If not it probably should.

Anonymous said...

More Snobby videos please!

CommieCanuck said...

thanks to smartphones, the morons of the world are interconnected by a worldwide spoodge glob of stupidity just like the one ensnaring He-Man up there.

Trump gets 49% of the vote in a state that has 114 colleges and 4 major research universities. So we know the spoodge originates from a brass and glass luxury suite on the 40th floor in NYC.

janinedm said...

So, every bike will have a helmet sitting in a basket on it? How do you ensure that people get the right fit because, as well all know, a poorly fitted helmet can be less safe than no helmet while a helmet you can't even get on your head is equal to no helmet.

Paul Bowen said...

"These idiotic helmet workarounds just go to show how these laws serve no real purpose and are basically religious/superstitious in nature"

Odd you saying that today as on the ride in this morning I was chuckling to myself about your referring some time ago to a bike helment as a "styrofoam yarmulke" (something must have reminded me of it, dunno what. Maybe I saw some polystyrene.) Anyhoo, it occurred to me that it's an apposite description as the helment and the yarmulke have in common that they are headgear worn to demonstrate that the wearer is of a particular faith position.

balls™ said...

Sorry I'm late. I was doing a little "helmet maintenance" and browsing tumblr.

Amanda Whurlitzer said...

"Helmetless cycling is right up there with smoking when it comes to stuff you're not supposed to show people doing anymore."

You know the original bad news Bears movie, the one from 1976 with Walter Matthau? Well in is not rated R. Not PG (as it was when it opened) and not PG-13, but R.

Not because of all the racial slurs, nor because is shows a little league coach passing out drunk during practice, nor even because the coach gives all the kids beer when they lose the big game.

But because it show the kids riding in a car without seat belts.

Anonymous said...

Sorry for the digression, but...

In Massachusetts, Trump got 49% of the Republican primary. Both HC and BS had about twice the votes of DT.

Of the total vote, he got 16%. Lots of Dems in Mass.

Back to bikin' Sunny and nice for the last 2 weeks in NorCal. The Stupor Bowl is gone, and our bike trails are open again.

Grump said...

Snobby, about this Oi (or Oy?) bell.
I thought that the band AC/DC patented that term, when they came out with their single, TNT, back in 1976?




Winky said...

So if you're riding a bike with the curved handlebars like they use in the Tour de France is it more important to have your hands near the dick-brake levers or near the bell? Watching that guy tear up the shared-use path with only the bell-shield readily to hand gave me the willies.

N/A said...

Searching for "funny helmets" in a popular searching engine yields some pretty decent results.


Anyways, I'm helmeted up and ready to take a spin on the ol' biek!

grog said...

Bike share, helment share, chamois cher, shoe share, oi share, recumbabe share.

Logan Johns said...

Why would you shower and then put your lycra on. Showering before you get sweaty seems a little neurotic. Or, are you showering before dressing in your finest formal bike kit to attend an haute couture event?

Some guy from upstate said...

So the brake levers on Snob's Brompton point straight at the ground, the brake levers on Jewish man on the right's bike point straight up. Is this some sort of secret code?

N/A said...

Shower before you ride to work? Some Freds like to wear their "kit" to commute in. And if they don't have shower facilities at their working place, then a pre-ride shower then pat-dry at work.


Also, a wake-up shower for early morning rides?


Also, you don't want day old ball sweat in your expensive chamois, do you? That'll break their space-age fibers down. Fact: Old ball funk can melt synthetic materials.

N/A said...

Another fact: Chopin created Old Ball Funk one evening, while high as shit on bath salts. This has only recently been discovered by music historians.

Dollarydoo said...

Knob Bell End

BikeSnobNYC said...

Logan Johns,

Why would you start a five-hour ride with a funky crotch?

--Wildcat Rock Machine

Victor Kaminski said...

vsk said ...

I know who I'd rather be tackled by in Vancouver!

vsk

ken e. said...

whoa nelly! never saw the vancouver video, but at the 4:45 mark if you had turned right (to the west), you'd have been at patisserie lebeau! WHICH IS THE BEST!!! accidental caps lock there, but if you love pastries, you should know this.

BTSY CLNS
BRNG FUNK
OLVR LBEU
BRNG BTTR

Neil said...

I think those are jousting racks...

P. Bateman said...

did your brompton come with special beans to grow that steering stalk?

if you are of english descent and happen to climb that stalk are you in danger of being devoured?

i think that is a design flaw that brompton, an english company, hopefully would have already corrected.

dcee604 said...

Luckily, I backed the Knog Oi bell before you posted it here. It's probably sold out now!
And when are you going to be in Vancouver again? We can Cat6 on those new bikeshare bikes.
With or without a helmet.

Anonymous said...

Not slingshots, rifle rack.

Bryan said...

Someday, I will own a Brompton. Someday. I like that Oi, but since when do established companies need to crowd source funds? Seems dubious to me

mondo_vino_ftw said...


Bryan and others.

Because selling stuff to bike people is a threadbare profit margin, capital intensive hobby someone is trying to turn into a business.

You'd have better luck "investing" in the wine business.

Anonymous said...

The positioning diagram says the Hipe angle is good, but I remember hearing in a song that I shouldn't believe it.

BPsucks said...

I don't know about Vancouver, but in Seattle, you mostly don't get bothered about being helmetless if you're a middle class white. I mostly where mine because it helps when dealing with cops if I crash.

the Jimboner said...

OI! is how you say HI! in Brasil.

Cu is how you say butthole.

oi_bands_from_yesteryear said...

Apparently they skipped the Oi! bands?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oi!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Oi!_bands

what does knog do with the extra cash they made? They made a whole lot with the bell.

McFly said...

I could not WAIT to get home from school and watch He-Man and The Maters of the Universe.

bieks said...

"...The helmets, purposely designed by Bell Helmets for Vancouver’s bike share system...
You shoulda seen the helments they accidentally designed for the bike share. Oi.

They only hand out no-helment tickets in Vancouver during bike to work week so you were safe. Wouldn't want the noobs getting any ideas about riding year round.

CommieCanuck said...

16%. Much better?

bad boy of the north said...

knog does make some really nice products.i have a few of their blinky lights.the new bell seems like a great idea,except that the dings will bring pavlov's dogs,or at least Leroy's.

Chris Yeargers said...

That's a gun rack.

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

McFly, who are the Maters of the Universe? Are the Masters? Baters? Taters?

Back in my day, we had Tobor the 8th Man, Astro Boy, Speed Racer, Three Stooges re-runs with Officer Joe Bolton and Superman re-runs starring George Reeves.

Good times, lemme tell ya!

livingjetlag said...

I remember back in college the "F*** the Jews" sign my friends and I would hold up in front one of the sororities now and then. They still wouldn't sleep with us, though. I guess it wasn't a very persuasive sign. In retrospect, probably should have said "please."

Anonymous said...

Colnago Comfort Bike

Mae West said...

Is that a steering stalk on your Brompton, or are you just glad to see me?

Spokey said...

Lieutenant Oblivious

McFly, who are the Maters of the Universe? Are the Masters? Baters? Taters?

here's a rare Mater for ya

The King of Park Slope said...

GUNS RACK

Captain Oblivious said...

Or just RACKs

Suck the helmet on my Dik said...

Still No Deaths on Citi Bike, 2.5 Years (reported in Dec. 2015) and we are a year and a half past 23 million rides and no deaths reported in August 2014, and still no fatalities and very few injuries (like 3 in NYC, and 5 in 6-7 years in The Mini-Apple, MN) and still the helmet worshippers continue their brain dead arguments for helmets. So apparently helmets cause gross stupidity. So why not helmets for things which are more dangerous, like well: Everything. Somebody has probably died from knitting in the last 7+ years of the bike share era. On rare occasions some pedestrian moron tells me to wear a helmet, and i have dispensed with all civility, just flip the bird, and tell them "you should wear a helmet, Fucking Moron!"

Anonymous said...

One bike share customer has died in Canada, but they were wearing a helmet, which probably was at least partially responsible for the fatality, cause helmets really do suck that bad.
(Oh and i guess canadians don't count)

FixedGear SingleSpeed said...

Well cross off Vancouver, New South Wales, and Seattle off my vacation list. Are municipalities that cash-strapped they need to extort fines from cyclists for not wearing helmets? I mean we all know a foam hat does nothing to protect a cyclist from a 2 ton automobile.

Freddy Murcks said...

The person that you are calling a "Water Fred" just looks like a nondescript dude in a boat. These are Water Freds, dear Snob.

babble on said...

I can't stand it any longer! The world has gone stark, raving mad. Sure, Snobberdoodums: the rest of YOUR day passed as if in a dream, but in my books every single fucking day is a nightmare, living in a world where a narcissistic, borderline personality like Donald Drumpf has even a remote chance of holding America's nuclear codes. WTF are you people THINKING??
And on the other side of the planet, you can get a $400 ticket for riding hard? Are you fucking kidding me? Meanwhile, no single government on Earth is prepared to actually stop drivers from speeding or even texting whilst in control of a vehicle, and thus every single day thousands of people are maimed and killed by cars out on the roads.
Healments for bikeshare bikes are just a great way to spread lice. No. Thank. You. Very much.
These are dark, desperate days indeed. The Canadian courts struck down legislation denying people the right to die with dignity, but honestly, if you're really ready to check out once and for all, it's not that hard. Hell, there's a road on every corner, and billions of entitled motorists happy to help you out of here, once and for all.

babble on said...

Mr Murks, that is a Frederika. And Snobi Wan was pointing to the fellows in the shadow of the bridge, rowing through the muck, up close and personal.

Spokey said...

wadda ya mean?

we gots choices. sure we gots a greedy narcissistic psychopathic moron on one side and a greedy narcissistic psychopathic moron on the other side

but

at what other time in our hemorrhoid history could we choose which sex we wanted our greedy narcissistic psychopathic moron to be?

Marble Hill Is Part of Manhattan said...

Both ends of that bridge are in Manhattan.

BamaPhred said...

Masters of the Universe? Hell, I'm not even Master of my domain!

Freddy Murcks said...

You're right, Babble. I couldn't see it in the small version of the pic. Crewing water Freds indeed. I wonder if they have a cox in that skull.

Anonymous said...

This passes for informed comment in bicycle helmet land (Australia):-

Marky, if you have been riding for 50 years without a helmet I think you are a very lucky man to still be alive, I sincerely hope your luck doesn't run out any time soon. Some people like to test fate or have a death wish, maybe you are one of them. Good luck riding, stay safe.

I'm guessing the author of the above asinine shit is a stupid fat fuck who can't see anything wrong with driving their monster SUV to MacDonalds drive-thru. Stupid fucks who wouldn't have a fucking clue indulging in censorial nonsense give me the shits.

Anonymous said...

When today's BSNYC blog dropped, the Knog bike bell kickstarter was at $64,000 I think. Now, 9 hours later it is at $101,546. And that is real dollars, not kola foreskins.

Hope Wildcat is getting a kick-back from his kickstarter plug.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Marble Hill is Part of Manhattan,

Yes, I am aware of that, which is why I said "separates Manhattan island from the mainland" not "separates Manhattan from the Bronx."

--Wildcat Rock Machine

leroy said...

"Don't drive furiously" doesn't quite have the same sense of urgency as "don't drive angry."

McFly said...

Errrr ummm not sure. I just remember Evil-Lyn complaining that Skeletor always had a boner.

Liberace said...

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Donald Trump said...

My assistant read me your blog today. You are not doing well.

Anonymous said...

I see why this blog is not on the Brooks site. They would not allow such poor photography over there.

bad boy of the north said...

lieutenant oblivious,don't forget captain jack mccarthy,hosting popeye and the ny st.patrick's day parade.

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

Bad boy, you're right, forgot all about Captain Jack McCarthy!

Speaking of Helment Laws, over in the Northern end of NY's grundle, aka Rockland County, they also have a Helment Law requiring anyone riding a biek to wear a helment, a step up from the NY State law requiring helments only on persons below age 14. But the maximum fine is only $50 in Rockland County, same as the NY state law. And I've never seen it enforced. Unlike Piermont police staking out their red light and pulling over every cyclist that runs it, and Nyack police, who periodically have stop sign pogroms against cyclists. Maybe they just add the no helment fine to the red light and stop sign tickets they write.

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Marble Hill is Part of Manhattan said...

I was responding to "alighting upon Manhattan". Didn't say "island" there.

Of course you already knew it. Why should that stop me from busting your chops about it if you don't get it perfectly correct every time?

Andrew Fox said...

Helmets are for chumps

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