Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Let's Just Ease Ourselves Back Into It, Shall We?

I'm now back from my mini-tour of the Pacific Northwest and the San Francisco Bay Area, so let the rejoicing commence:



Rest assured a more thorough accounting of my travels will follow once I've had ample opportunity to order my thoughts and curate my photos, but here's the short version:

Portland

Lush, verdant forest trails just a short jaunt from downtown?


A fancy new bridge for pedestrians, cyclists, and public transit on which cars are not allowed?


Freak bikes as everyday transportation?


Yes, everything you've heard about Portland is true, and as steadfastly as I resisted its many charms I'm afraid I failed in that regard.

Seattle

Incredibly the sun was shining upon the Emerald City, and as soon as I arrived in town I fled it by boat to Bainbridge Island:


Where I visited Classic Cycle, whose ad you may have noticed over there in the right-hand margin:


In addition to containing a full-service bike shop Classic Cycle is also an endlessly fascinating bicycle museum.  If you ever find yourself in the Seattle area you'd be nuts not to visit it (if not for the ferry trip alone) and so profound are the shop's charms that they will be the subject of a future post.

Then I boated back to Seattle, where the weather had returned to its default setting:


Indeed, this person is taking advantage of a brief downpour to wash his hands with a bar of soap in a sidewalk puddle:


Yes, the inhabitants of Seattle are forever battling seasonal affective disorder, which is why in addition to a helmet law they now have a balloon law:


The idea is that if everyone rides around with balloons they can lift the collective spirit of the city from "blah" to "meh."

Speaking of Seattle, I'm pleased to introduce you to my newest sponsor, EH Works:


No, EH Works is not what a Canadian mechanic says when a repair job is good enough. ("Eh, works, that'll be five hundred loonies.")  It's Erica Hanson, who makes these beautiful tool rolls, and she was kind enough to present me with one at my Seattle book signing:


I'd been meaning to get a tool roll for my travel bike, since until now I'd been awkwardly stuffing everything into a droopy saddle bag:


Sure, it all fit, but when you want a specific item you've got to fish it out with two fingers like someone in skinny jeans looking for a quarter.

So as soon as I got back to my room I transferred everything to the EH Works tool rool:


Thus upping my convenience factor by about 10 and my aesthetic factor by about 100:


I like to think Eric the Chamferer would approve of this strapped to the rails of his handiwork.

Walnut Creek

The last stop on my mini-tour was Walnut Creek, CA, where I was the guest of Rivendell:


As with Classic Cycle, if you find yourself anywhere even remotely near Walnut Creek and you don't visit Rivendell you're out of your freaking mind, and I'll share more about my own visit in a future post.  In the meantime, I'll just note that my visit was one of many firsts: first visit to Rivendell, first ride on a tandem bicycle, and my first time trying a Campagnolo rod shifter from the 1930s:


If you ever get a chance to try one of these I highly recommend it, if only because it will put all this fussing over the differences between Force and Rival or whatever else the Freds worry about into its proper perspective.

I'll also add that the post-signing ride was positively sublime:


Oh, and also there were hatchets:


So please bear with me as I re-insert myself into my daily routine and come to terms with being back in New York City, where the riding and the landscape is a bit more...prosaic.  And where they only give water to cyclists in helmets:

Just for that, next time I head out to the beach I plan to buy the cheapest thing on the menu and positively decimate their bathroom.

81 comments:

Ted K. said...

142. Reform is always restrained by the fear of painful consequences if changes go too far. But once a revolutionary fever has taken hold of a society, people are willing to undergo unlimited hardships for the sake of their revolution. This was clearly shown in the French and Russian Revolutions. It may be that in such cases only a minority of the population is really committed to the revolution, but this minority is sufficiently large and active so that it becomes the dominant force in society. We will have more to say about revolution in paragraphs 180-205.

Jasper said...

Early doors

Anonymous said...

Podiummmmmmmmmmmmm

dop said...

Summertime Scranus

N/A said...

What pressure was Grant running?

N/A said...

Oh, and glad you're back!

N/A said...

Rod Shifter was a famous adult film star of the 1930s.

DB said...

Welcome back.
Everyone pretty much behaved while you were gone.

Anonymous said...

Drafting in behind the number 8 guy, welcome back!!

Grump said...

Snobby, that guy wasn't carrying balloons. It was his new mandatory backpack airbag that deployed my mistake. While you were gallivanting around the west coast, Congress passed an backpack airbag law to protect cyclists from rear end collisions.

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

11th! Welcome back!

Anonymous said...

Of all the bike shops in Walnut Creek, Rivendell is certainly the most precious.

commie said...

Snob, ride up to the Roll-N-Roaster with either this or this and demand your free fucking water.
Then, slowly sip it while pacing back and forth across the front of the windows.
Plus ten points if wearing a Trump 2016 T-shirt.

commie said...

While you were gallivanting around the west coast, Congress passed an backpack airbag law to protect cyclists from rear end collisions.

Yeah, but they were Takata airbags, and they killed Ensign Pavel Chekov. Read it on the internet.

cdinvb said...

Crepes. Didn't make the break. Well, maybe I can close the gap. I'd like to try drafting Ted K one of these days.

bad boy of the north said...

well,it looks like someone had fun last week....

leroy said...

Note to self: If next Gran Fondon't stops at Roll-N-Roaster, use facilities before BSNYC.

(Welcome back.)

Old timer said...

Yowza, I went to the BSNYC book signing at Walnut Creek on Saturday afternoon. It was as fine an event as one could ever imagine!!! It was hosted by Grant Peterson of Rivendell. Grant is, of course, perhaps the most principled spokesperson for sane cycling, in the business. Snobby was - no surprise - as acerbically entertaining in person, as in his BLOG!!! He also very cheerfully autographed copies of his new book. The event (a hotel conference room) was packed with the requisite “Freds”. A great time was had by all! (Wish Babble had been there, too!)

#Anyoneelse said...

Donald Trump's economic proposals would isolate the United States, hurt its economic growth, increase the federal deficit and cost millions of American jobs, according to new analysis.
The grim findings from Moody's Analytics state that the nation's wealthiest would benefit the most from the presumptive GOP presidential nominee's proposals, while middle- and lower-class Americans would be hurt the most.
"The economy will be significantly weaker if Mr. Trump's economic proposals are adopted. Under the scenario in which all his stated policies become law in the manner proposed, the economy suffers a lengthy recession and is smaller at the end of his four-year term than when he took office," the report said.

Blog Drafter said...

But how will that impact the gravel-specific market?

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

So, to tie this all together, economically, Mein Drumpf's proposals would bring our country back to the economic equivalent of the Campagnolo rod shifter. Except there would be no teeth on the rear axle or dropouts. We'd all just backpedal until the system jammed or the chain broke and the rear wheel fell off!

Bryan said...

You came back to us! Next time you travel by plane, you really should up your smugness factor and pack along the Brompton. Carry on luggage like a boss. Sweet tool roll, and very reasonably priced

Bryan said...

And I just had to get an EH Works tool roll :) #treatyoself

Glen Larimer said...

I hope your last sentence doesn't imply that you had something against Roll-N-Roaster's well-intended helmet rule!

Please read: http://cycletechrofo.blogspot.com/2016/04/wear-your-helmet-but-dont-use-it.html

Still don't have all the feeling back in my lip/chin!

babble on said...

Speaking of teeth, I got a kick out of that sawblade chainring if only for its irony factor.

sam disraeli said...

consider the source anyonelse, Moodys proclaimed their fielty to hrc prior to their trump 'analysis'. lies, damn lies, statistics.

Ripsaw said...

That chain ring on the bike in Classic Cycles was also used to mill lumber from the massive old growth logs that were harvested from the West Coast rain forests in the early 20th century.

Philarmonic said...

Snob,
the one time you come to the Bay Area in a few years and you have to do it on the same day as the Genentech concert. I hesitated but decided to go to the concert.

Keep up the good work. Always a pleasure to read your blog.

Victor Kaminski said...

vsk said ...

#Anyoneelse, stop carrying Monica's ex-boyfriend's wife's water.

"the economy suffers a lengthy recession and is smaller at the end of his four-year term than when he took office," the report said" ... that's what we have now with the Central Bankers pulling the strings in the current regime. Caterpillar retail sales decline for the past 42 months, trucking, shipping, and rail traffic in the dumps. There is no "price discovery" in the market. I don't think the top evil 1% worry about things like offshoring and dubious hiring practices of businesses. They don't get affected by it much.

Oh crap I thought this was a different blog...

I've been to Classic Cycle and the long sleeve jersey I got from them a few years ago is my go to Fall and Spring thing.

I have a hard time tying my shoes so I don't think a Cambio Corsa is for me, no matter how cool it would be.
Would be awesome to get a set of dropouts and have a new frame built for them but ... just because you could, does not mean you should.

Welcome back Snobby!!

vsk

You Take Them Out With A Ballpeen Hammer and a Section Of Pipe said...

"That chain ring on the bike in Classic Cycles..."

...is being held on by one sweet cotter.

Jeff Perry said...

My wife refers to those dangly little bags as "bike scrotums".

Andrew Kent said...

Great summary of Portland and Seattle. I hope to ride my bicycle in them one day.

McFly said...

Commencing with rejoicing in 5....4....3.....2....

[Well I just shit myself, is that puddle still available?]

Anonymous said...

you carry a spanner wrench in your tool thing? you fred you.

P. Bateman said...

"fish it out with 2 fingers"

i will not insert my 2 fingers into anything fishy

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Scranus Eh!

Anonymous said...

$50 for a blanket to roll your tools in? When does your Rapha sponsorship kick in? #sellout

Kraig said...

Hey Snob,

Would you describe the shifting as "precise, crisp, flawlessly mechanical" and the Quick release axe as "thru" ?

Thanks, Kraig

JLRB said...

Anon @ 12:39 - makes perfect sense when the tool kit is for a travel bike, no?

Anon@ 12:54 - #growup - do you think the author writes this blog for your pure enjoyment?

Pathetic Old Cyclist said...

What does the sign say in the Portland picture?.....'Yield to Bicycles'...? Preposterous!!!

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 12:54pm,

Not for nothing, but if you think being a bike blogger is "selling out" then you're a friggin idiot.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

I prefer the saddlebag to the tool roll. If an off duty policeman cuts me off with his car while I'm riding in the bike lane and starts waiving a gun at me while I'm fishing around in my saddlebag and an allen wrench falls out, he can say I had an ice pick and was lunging at him with it. And then have me arrested by other cops.

P. Bateman said...

i do hope you are able to one day actually sell out your blog to some international manufacturer...like...if panasonic decided to make bikes again...and you are able to retire to the sunny beaches of fort lauderdale with your peoples and live happily ever after.

Bryan said...

Gawd Snob...you're such a sellout! Shilling things on us like artisanal tool rolls, Brooks saddles, unaffordable folding bikes and affordable online bought bikes. You should not have any sponsors!! You don't need money, you're a blogger! How dare you open us up to really nice products just so you can make a living.

Now that that is over with, EH Works were really cool in presenting you with a roll. It's priced competitively. Looks classy as fuck. As I mentioned earlier, I just ordered one...so as far as EH is concerned, they already made money off of you! So, you're welcome?

Vat is dis Doping said...

From the NY Times:

"Kenyans Ask IOC for Clarification on Doping"

FOR SALE said...

Love the old looking, but no doubt new, tag on the roll, curated no doubt (does the fine print say "Printed in Brooklyn"?.

trama said...

WCRM,
What are these "Force" and "Rival" that you speak of?

SIXS PEED

dop said...

Harrumph. I just bought a tool roll. Two bucks cheaper than the yellow one that said camelback.

Fred Mercury said...

Please include photos of "epic" quill stems from the Rivendell ride. Did G. Peterson turn riders away if their tires were smaller than 38s?

Anonymous said...

I sense a sea change in your blog. Has your west coast visit given you a new sense of optimism? What other reason could you have for saying "campagnolo rod shifter" and not refer to cipolinni?

Paul de TeeVee said...

@Old Timer and Fred Mercury

P-E-T-E-R-S-E-N for fuck's sake or there's a slowly rotating Gransfors Bruk small forest axe with a trajectory leading to the back of your head.

GA-GUSH!

I bet you spell John Forester's name wrong too.

KNOW YOUR LUMINARIES

Anonymous said...

"Has your west coast visit given you a new sense of optimism??"

His trip to Italy for the vintage ride did the same thing, but temporarily. One more day in NYC will knock the optimism right out of Mr. Snob.

JLRB said...

I will complain about selling out the day Snob switches to that irritating format where you have to click on the screen to get to the next part of the story, but there are misleading click spots everywhere that take you to commercial (aka porn) sites if you don't click correctly. THAT is selling out.

Frickus Rungus said...

2:16 annony-moose: he said he was going to ease into it... Not thrust back into (into the back of?) it.

Welcome back Mr. Cotter! (pin)

Court said...

I visited Rivendell for some pedals and walked out with a Sam Hillborne. Be careful if you step foot in there. But you won't regret it at all. Roadkill and ramen weren't that bad while I recovered.

McFly said...

3 tire levers? You sir....are not fucking around.

N/A said...

No kidding. I don't even know how to use a third tire lever!

Frickus Rungus said...

N/A - I searched for how to use the 3rd tire lever on the internets and this is what I found. Laurie will explain what to do with your extra lever...

dop said...

I think you use the third tire lever when you lose the other two.

N/A said...

Well, if you're going to lose your levers, and, as such, decide to carry back-up levers, then how many levers are really enough? 5? 12? Where does it all end? howmanyleversyourunnin'?

Fred Mercury said...

@Paul da TeVee
I did not even know who John Forrestor was, but I looked 'im up. I was thinking about verifying the spelling of Mr. P, but figured it's not that big of a fucking deal, except to losers. Thanks for the edification, knob. Hardly a reason to threaten murder. Lighten up, Francis.

CommieCanuck said...

Donald Trump's economic proposals would isolate the United States, hurt its economic growth, increase the federal deficit and cost millions of American jobs, according to new analysis.
The grim findings from Moody's Analytics state that the nation's wealthiest would benefit the most from the presumptive GOP presidential nominee's proposals, while middle- and lower-class Americans would be hurt the most.
"The economy will be significantly weaker if Mr. Trump's economic proposals are adopted. Under the scenario in which all his stated policies become law in the manner proposed, the economy suffers a lengthy recession and is smaller at the end of his four-year term than when he took office," the report said.


So ...wear a helmet?

Snob, don't pretend you're not a thousandaire. This blog is a cash cow. Where do all those quarters I stick in the disc drive slot end up? Exactly.

SELL OOOT

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

Frickus, I'd like Laurie to demonstrate the Bead Buddy and the Bead Popper, maybe with an assist from Devon!

A Dollar for One Percenters, a Penny for You said...

CC at 441 I don't know how much US tax reporting you get north of the NSA Border, so don't take this the wrong way. But a GOP'er proposing a tax cut for the wealthy, while giving everyone else a middle finger, is old news down here south of the border. Besides, we all know that tax cuts for the wealthy pay for themselves through increased economic activity (tune into Fox and you can hear all about it, if you can get Fox in Canada, some countries block porn), just look at all the black ink the Ronnie Raygun and Bush Jr. administrations produced.

Anonymous said...

"Kenyans Ask IOC for Clarification on Doping"

Response: Eat rice, beans and vegetables, pharmaceuticals, not so much, unless their sponsoring the event.

Anonymous said...

If you are going to decimate the bathroom then that means you are going to destroy every 10th cubicle. So what if they only have 9 or 8?

Pat on the Back said...

I carry three (3) tire levers, I also carry a small adjustable wrench (max expansion of 15mm), a multi tool, and a folding plier-gizmo thing that proves useful for pulling shards of wire out of flattened tires. I am an amazing human being and a champion of champions.

fourhour erection said...

Gary Johnson. Libertarian candidate for POTUS. Just think. No more Dems or 'Pubs payin' off markers. Cheap weed, less war, more Liberty.

Jim Morrison said...

Roll tool roll

decimate positive said...

tootsie roll

babble on said...

Old Timer... me too! Nothing sweeter than a ride with a few birds of a feather.

JLRB - ++ heh heh #growup. Good one. :)

POC - We have the same signs all throughout Stanley Park, along with 30 km/hr limit signs. Motorists mostly ignore them, but it gives the right impression, anyway.

Coline said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
McFly said...

Laurie looks like the Girl Next Door. She has probably handled 2 levers at once but surely not 3. She only has 2 hands. Where would she even stick the 3rd one? Only so much rim.... please......


Maybe she holds it in her mouth in case she drops one of the other 2.

N/A said...

Laurie looks like a nice young lady with many fine qualities.

Anonymous said...

Her updated lawsuit has kept a series of salacious allegations, but it has also removed a demand of $100 million in damages and a referral to Trump’s acquaintance Jeffrey Epstein as a “Jew bastard.” In the lawsuit, the woman claimed that Trump and convicted pedophile Epstein raped her, underage at the time, at Epstein-hosted Manhattan sex parties in 1994. The woman said Trump told her that if she ever disclosed anything about the rape that she would be “physically harmed” or even “killed.” She stated that she was his “sex slave” for almost four months.

BamaPhred said...

Granfors Bruk is nice, but my money preferred the Stihl MS 391.

Anonymous said...

Funny take on bike apps http://www.cbc.ca/radio/thisisthat/first-there-was-the-driverless-car-now-there-is-a-riderless-bike-1.3644515

Anonymous said...

Whose updated lawsuit?laurie?oh,no!she probably wasn't even born then.

JLRB said...

Scranus

N'Dugo, Kip and Baleto said...

Your "magic pictures" are nice, but I prefer my Leica with the Zeiss lens.

Start at 55 sec. Good to see Shaft got some work.

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