...in bike repair:
Which is the literary equivalent of winning the Cat 6 KOM on the Manhattan Bridge during the morning rush hour, and Brooklyn-bound at that.
As for how my new book stacks up against the rest of the cycling world's prosaic efforts, I'm sitting in a respectable fifth position:
Nevertheless, in the meantime I'm reveling in my temporary celebrity by doing stuff like bloviating on podcasts:
I'm very grateful to Fat Cyclist for inviting me on his show, and somewhat less grateful that he posted this photo of us taken at a bar in Brooklyn some years back:
I may never live down the humiliation of wearing a Rapha jacket in public.
Speaking of my book, which is all I currently care about, I continue to receive nit-picky bike dork comments about the front fender on the cover because bike dorks can't shut up about that sort of thing. Therefore, in the spirit of the software update, I'm officially releasing a downloadable patch:
If you really can't stand that front fender, simply print out the above image and glue it to your book.
Now shut up.
Of course, even when you're the Number One Best-Selling Author In Bike Repair (no mean feat considering the book's not even really about bike repair), people still take advantage of you. Consider this Garmin ad in Bicycling that invokes Fred "Woo-hoo-hoo-hoo!" speed without crediting your's truley:
(Photo via Peter)
I realize I've mentioned this before, and I also realize I've got a somewhat inflated sense of myself, but there's no way that 46mph is a coincidence. Frankly, I think they missed a fantastic marketing opportunity by not paying me to be in the ad. Come on, me dressed as Bret and flying down a mountain pass with a great big "Oh shit!" look on my face? They'd sell a zillion of those goddamn Fred computers, guaranteed.
Indeed, by appearing in an advertisement in a glossy magazine I'd be realizing a lifelong dream--as I would if I got a chance to ride with Mario Cipollini:
Have you got a few hours to spare this Thursday (May 5)? Can you get to London with your bike? If so, head to London Zoo for midday and you can ride with the legendary Mario Cipollini.
Wow! London is possibly my favorite city in the world besides New York--and come to think of it New York is an overpriced shithole so I guess that means London is my favorite city period. (Or "full stop" as they say over there, see what an Anglophile I am?) So to ride in it with Mario Cipollini would be truly sublime. To that end, I'm launching a Kickstarter in order to get myself to London by tomorrow. Here are the rewards:
Pledge $5: I send you a terse thank you and pocket the money.
Pledge $10: I send you a terse thank you and buy myself a drink at a bar.
Pledge $100: Now we're getting somewhere.
Pledge round-trip first class airfare on a top-tier carrier: I ride shirtless and covered in olive oil as an homage to Cipollini and return with a sample of his semen you can use for breeding purposes. (You provide semen shipping container, available here at a discount, simply use discount code CIPO at checkout.)
By the way, if you're wondering why they're meeting at the zoo, Cipollini keeps a pied-à-terre there where he puts himself on display in exchange for free rent:
(Cipollini relaxing in his enclosure during a recent visit to London.)
Meanwhile, in bike tech news, BikeRadar wants you to know that if you complain about all these stupid new bike component standards then there's something wrong with you:
Which is odd, because if you read the article it goes on to complain about exactly the same thing we've all been complaining about:
The biggest real charge that can be levelled against ‘the industry’ is the widespread mistake of calling every new measurement a standard. Created a bottom bracket that’s 3mm wider than all the others? It’s misleading and inaccurate to tell everyone this is a revolutionary new standard. It is, in fact, an awkward new measurement.
Funnily enough, marketing departments don’t fancy printing Awkward New Measurement all over the down tube – not even ANM Technology – so they tend to write something else. They really should stop with the ‘standard’ thing, though.
Yeah, no shit. We're not complaining about the stuff that works and is better. We're complaining about the stupid bottom bracket shells that sound like Mario Cipollini cracking his knuckles before an "epic" wank.
Penultimately, remember the Frontal Aerospoke Craze of the Early Aughts?
it's back--and it's motorized!
Now you can launch yourself off the curb at 20mph, which seems like a really great idea:
Though I hope you'll be able to stop the thing with your paltry rim brakes:
Lastly, I was reading the following obituary in the New York Times:
And though I wasn't familiar with the artist I was intrigued to learn she created a piece called "Lick the Tire of My Bicycle," which one article describes thusly:
In “Lick the Tire of My Bicycle”, 1974, legs sprout from colorful buttocks on bicycle seat that are a target of a gun held by a hand that on is mirrored on the opposite side by a hand growing from a hairy phallus. The zippy ardor of the colored pencil striations in purple, orange and pink contrast with the dark violence of bullets, penetration and explosive, coercive sexuality. An ugly John Wayne rides a child’s pony like a carousel horse, with pistol cocked and the horn of his saddle obscenely erect. Close inspection of most of the iconic figures reveal critical details: Marisol likes to open doors to celebrity culture’s dark closet of skeletons.
I think I just found the design for the new BSNYC jersey.