As someone pointed out yesterday after the comments went all Godwin, this is a blog about bicycles, so let's talk about bikes. Bikes! And if you like to talk about bikes, you'll be pleased to know I've annexed (DO YOU SEE WHAT I DID THERE?) the Marin Pine Mountain 1, which is now officially a part of my stable, or quiver, or pod, or murder, or swarm, or whatever you call a bunch of velocipedes:
The bike's just too much fun to ride to send back.
Also, once again, I should point out that the Marin Pine Mountain 1 is not technically a fat bike, so you can rest assured that I AM STILL NOT GETTING A FAT BIKE.
I'm not, really. First you get a fat bike, then you get one of those Bluetooth handlebar speakers, and before you know it you've gone "full bro" and you're wearing Crocs to dinner parties.
Anyway, I liked the Marin just as it came out of the box, but now that it is my prisoner for life I've made some small modifications to better suit me: I've schlonged-out-and-donged-out the cockpit with my preferred longish stem (I find that makes for better climbing and more stable handling); I've also vag-ed up said cockpit by fitting my preferred dork-tastic labia majora-style Ergon grips; and finally I've swapped the saddle and seatpost for some others I had in my vast bicycle parts storage area.
And that's about all I'm gonna do until stuff wears out or breaks.
Speaking of breaking, after a couple months of road-only cycling due to a busted thumbing finger, the Marin was the perfect bike with which to regain my off-road footing, since wide gear ranges and even wider tires provide both confidence and margin for error. However, now that I'm feeling sharp and over-confident again, this morning I broke out my Engin custom artisanal singlespeed instead:
I was secretly worried that the Marin might have ruined me for singlespeeds with "regular" sub-3" tires, but I couldn't have been more wrong, and as I rode I fell in love with this bike all over again and congratulated myself for the umpteenth time for ordering it.
Yes, we cyclists love our bikes, as the inventor of the "Velojackr" well knows:
"Cyclists. We love our bikes, but we hate punctures. Nobody wants to flip their bikes and risk damaging expensive saddles, handlebars, gear shifters, and other cycle-tech accessories by resting them on the ground."
Firstly, I could listen to the word "ground" spoken in a Scottish accent all day. Secondly, is it really so hard to lay your bike down without damaging it? All you have to do is lay it down in the grass:
That seems like a more convenient option than taking up your bottle cage real estate with this tool Thermos:
Also, it's hard to imagine the typical cyclist will be able to place the Velojackr's patented handlebar rests in just the right orientation to receive the cockpit:
("Initiate cockpit docking procedure!")
No offense, but the sorts of Freds who represent the target market for this typically don't possess that degree of spatial intelligence:
("Cockpit docking procedure complete!")
I've also got serious misgivings about the name, which seems like it would be defined thusly:
1. Someone who steals bikes;
2. An exhibitionist who exposes himself while riding a bicycle.
The latter definition is reinforced by the fact that the Velojackr comes with gloves:
Because what's creepier than someone slipping on a pair of latex gloves?
It's almost as creepy as holding things near your midsection and measuring them:
Meanwhile, on the other end of the cycling spectrum from the Fredcycle with its cluttered cockpit is The Perfect Urban Bike:
Which is pretty much just like every other "minimalist" mail order bike, with the addition of some tire liners:
Or you could just use better tires, but that would be too easy.
Indeed, it's telling that the most promising Kickstarter innovation currently soliciting funding is the Rainette:
Which is basically a waterproof human baby sack:
This should go over especially well in America. After all, most people think you're crazy for transporting a child by bicycle on a beautiful sunny day, so you can only imagine their horror when it starts raining and you stuff your kid in a sack:
Hey, don't get me wrong, as a child-schlepper and parent I'm all in favor of both foul-weather child transport and putting kids in bags. It's just that the typical layperson probably wouldn't understand--though of course it's perfectly fine when the NYPD does it:
I guess they're taking that prisoner to go.