Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Riddle Me This: Lost and Found

Today is Wednesday, and we all know what Wednesday means.

It's Riddle Time!

Here goes:

Q: What has no fenders, a kickstand, and is bedazzled by a man who does not own a car?

A: This!

That's right, a reader informs me that you--yes, you!--can win this fantabulous glitter-encrusted sparkly bicycle that has been personally festooned by everybody's favorite carless bicycle advocate. Note that, as per the above-referenced post, you do NOT have to be present to win. Also note that carless bicycle advocate David Byrne does NOT own a car. In fact, implying that he does, or even joking about the idea of David Byrne driving a Dodge Caravan filled with braying soccer brats watching "Spongebob Squarepants" DVDs and throwing Chicken McNuggets at each other, automatically disqualifies you from the raffle.

Sure, a sitcom starring David Byrne as the patriarch of a typical suburban family would be extremely entertaining, but the truth is he would never drive a minivan, nor would he "hit up" the fast food drive-thru, nor would he allow children to do something as vacuous as play soccer when there are obscure ethnic musical instruments that they could be learning to play instead. At most, David Byrne might visit a food truck on his folding bicycle and purchase some organic kimchi. But that's as close to supporting the evil fossil fuel-burning infrastructure as he's likely to get.

Just ask alterna-warbler Thom Yorke if David Byrne thinks jokes like that are funny. He learned the hard way:

David Byrne: a man who has principles, boundless creativity, and a djenbe drum in his bathroom. But not a car.

Anyway, so let's assume you win the raffle, manage avoid using the "c" word (no, not that one, guttermouth) in Byrne's presence, and become the new captain of the Rhinestone Express. Sure, you may think you're in smugness heaven, but I can assure you that your life will not be all peaches and cream--or djenbe drums and kimchi for that matter. You still have to deal with real world stuff, like bike theft. Sooner or later your bike will get stolen, and then you have to compose a heartfelt "stolen bike" post on Craigslist. Just make sure you include all the pertinent information:

Was your bike stolen? (anywhere in NYC)
Date: 2011-07-07, 3:08PM EDT
Reply to: [deleted]

I comb through CL everyday looking for rare bikes. Most of the time I find garbage bikes way over priced but, a lot of the time I see people putting in pleas for someone to give them a tip on their stolen bike. Here's my questions for you NY.

Where was your bike stolen?
How? Cut the lock?
What type of lock?
What time of day/night?
What type of bike?

Once saw this chubby hispanic dude scoping bikes across the street from Bembe on South 6 and Berry. I can tell he was a bike thief because he had a rare track bike very poorly painted over. Nobody in their right mind repaints a rare track bike with rattle cans and doesn't bother to save the headbadge.

Before you get your panties in a bunch about this post. I am Hispanic myself so be EZ.

I admit I did get my panties in a bunch--not because of the "Hipsanic" part, but because of the part about how "nobody in their right mind" would repaint a rare track bike. If he saw that bike on South 6th and Berry, then he saw it in Williamsburg, and nobody in Williamsburg is in their right mind when it comes to bikes. People in Williamsburg have been doing ridiculous things to bikes for years now. Nobody in their right mind puts a $1,000 crabon fiber front wheel on a $300 Bikesdirect special either, but it's certainly not stopping them. Really, spray-painting a Colnago is sensible in comparison.

I do agree it's always a good idea to include details though, but don't forget to mention what color mini u-lock skin you were "palping" when the theft occurred:

As stupid as I find the idea of u-lock customization, that text really made me cringe. Maybe I should stop using the "h" word.

Probably less crucial though is describing the race of the supposed thieves in ALL CAPS:

STOLEN BLACK SPECIALIZED by BLACK guys - $500 (Gramercy)
Date: 2011-07-11, 8:13PM EDT
Reply to: [deleted]

Saw you three standing there at 20th Park should have double checked the lock to know I missed the frame! Bonehead move! You just made $500 if you see this or anyone knows the bike 58cm large frame all black 2006 Specialized Crossroads Comp Pro disc brakes front fork shock. VERY GOOD condition! It's worth about $500 less the all blacked out front rim you don't have. Meet in Union Square. Cash no questions asked so I can return the $900 replacement Specialized I just bought. Hit me up quick CASH right now CASH money..

Sometimes it's OK to laugh at bike theft victims, and I'd say that this is one of those times. I'm not sure that seeing three people standing near the bicycle you failed to lock properly means they stole it. However, if they didn't take it but they saw who did, I'm pretty sure they're not going to tell you now. Good luck returning the "$900 replacement Specialized" too, I'm sure the shop will be happy to take it back.

Meanwhile, speaking of futile searches, I was pleased to see the return of the famous "Fire seeks Ice" post from one year ago:

Fire seeks Ice for rematch 1 year later, WSH Bikepath - m4m
Date: 2011-07-12, 10:40PM EDT
Reply to:

Well my friend, It has been a little over a year since that FATEFUL DAY but I HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN.

I HAVE NOT SLEPT A WINK THIS ENTIRE TIME! Instead I ride the West Side Highway Bike path looking for you, 24 hours a day - 7 days a week, on a CONSTANT vigil hoping to put this challenge to rest.

Lend me your ears, my friend, so that I may refresh your memory of the events that occurred May twenty first in the year two thousand ten:

7pm, zipping down the west side hwy bike path I started to notice some persistent ticking noises. Moments later I heard breathing noises that seemed awfully close, I instinctively turned my head and found you practically riding my ass. I eased my pace to let you pass, but when you didn't I cranked it up a little to leave you in the dust. To my surprise you came flying by me like the wicked witch of the west on your black and silver speedmachine.

As you passed, our eyes locked in slow motion and IT WAS ON. I noticed we were bizarre-o-world cyclists; you on your black and silver bike and white t-shirt and me on my white and gold bike and black t-shirt.
We raced faster than a unicorn on rollerblades that was grinding on a lighting bolt, and as I passed you for the last time we said our first and ONLY words, I said "Opposite bikes" and you fired back in an intense and raspy voice; "FIRE AND ICE".

When I told my sister about our silent bromance she wanted to know which one of us was Fire and which was Ice. I speculate that I am fire because my bike is white hot and your bike is Black Ice. Either way we must face each other ONE LAST TIME for a rematch in which only one of us will make it out alive.


Actually, he's not the only one looking, and here's another poster who may have had a run-in with Ice...or at least Ice, Ice Baby:

young biker tanned blonde rastas - m4m - 23 (East Village)
Date: 2011-07-10, 11:59PM EDT
Reply to:

hey man, sunday afternoon riding your bike in the east vil by astor place, you have blonde rastas, had them up, no shirt on were tanned, you looked funking cool as shit.
hit me up, we crossed eyes by 9th and 3rd and i was with a girl, lets get a beer talk about life.
if this works ill believe in Jah.

Or, it may just have been Ras Trent. Either way, I would also have liked to see the following added:

Works every time.

So what's the answer? How do we stop the cycle of bike theft, and assumptions based on race, and "epic" Cat 6 challenges between the forces of good an evil? How do we instead raise cycling awareness as well as money for new bike racks? Well, with "nerd rides," of course:

A reader alerted me to this, and I'd like to know how you distinguish a "nerd ride" from pretty much any organized ride. Are we supposed to believe that tweed rides, and charity rides, and Critical Mass, and so forth are not nerdy? I browsed the photos that accompanied the article and I saw absolutely nothing to set this ride apart from pretty much any given day in Portland. Calling this a "nerd ride" is like calling an alleycat a "hilpster ride" or a recumbent ride a "beard ride;" it's just assumed and therefore redundant.

Mind you, I say this as a total nerd, since what other kind of person would need a gigantic smugness flotilla to "portage" a single kid and some random crap? Meanwhile, some people manage to get the same "portaging" capability out of a cheap mountain bike:

I happened upon the above bicycle recently, and my smugness was piqued by the home-made rack--fashioned, as it turns out, by a handyman operating under the name of "FixItBrooklyn:"

I was impressed by this, and if I were him I'd abandon the handyman stuff and open an artisanal hand-fabricated bike rack curation shop in Williamsburg. This is just the sort of authentic-looking thing people there would love to put on their bikes and use to not carry anything.

Elsewhere in Brooklyn, I also happened to spot a LAY-oh-pard fixie:

All it needs is a handmade rack--and perhaps a matching u-lock skin.


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Hah...haaaah. Donkey!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh Snap!

Astoriasontop said...


Anonymous said...

I win again!!! Donkey.

Anonymous said...


ant1 said...


Mike said...

Yay bikes! Top 10?

Anonymous said...

not bad for a wednesday

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

All you haters suck my kimchi.


Ed said...

all the way up to eleven

samh said...

"We raced faster than a unicorn on rollerblades that was grinding on a lighting bolt<..."

I am not a bedazzled or rhinestoned engine said...

I thought it was always weed wednesday, why did you change it?

David Byrne and a bedazzler, who would have thought considering all of is conservative pajama outfits

I am a stressed weedless engine said...

Stress is having a dove chocolate thrown at me.

pebes said...

I want my own arch-nemesis.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm, U-lock skins? Does this mean I don't need to buy Soma's Palmy U-lock made of aluminum (lightweight! easier to cut!) available in a variety of colors?

Want to get rich? What the world needs is a Kryptonite Mini-5 done in titanium. It'd be a third lighter than steel, much harder to cut, look cool as shit and cost $700. I'd buy one.

le Correcteur said...

Top twenty; and read it too!

OBA said...

Skiddily-whoa! Nyabingi!

mikeweb said...

"I am IRONMAN!!!"


ringcycles said...

samh: not that there's anything wrong with that.

mikeweb said...

That Leopard fixie conversion is pefect for someone with one of these kits. It would look like the prey putting a beat down on the predator. The political underetones are unmistakable.

hillbilly said...

does David Byrne own a car?

Anonymous said...

I work in a bicycle shop and the instructions for changing the color of your kryptonite mini u-lock's shackle is the most over complicated, insane process. It involves warm pans of water, precise cuts in thick rubber that must be measured to the nanometer, and something akin to putting on handlebar grips without lube or an air hose. It's easier to install speedplays, or disassemble and rebuild an internal geared hub.

But I guess it will look cool when you use it to close the 3$ cable you wrapped around your top tube on your $2000 track bike with no bar tape.

Marcel Da Chump said...

Spark the Wednesday Spliff, or ima kill you!

mhandsco said...

Remain in Light. Byrne could shit on almost everything I hold dear and I'd probably still give him a pass.

honkybucket said...


I'll be your arch-nemesis. I ride a yellow road bike and possess a love for cheeseburgers. I'll call myself "cheeseburger crusade." You should adorn yourself as a milkshake and ride a brown mountain bike that you'll call "chocolate charles."

It's on.

Anonymous said...

In the first picture of the bike with the artisanal hand-fabricated bike rack - check out the shadow cast by the pie-plate on the bike next to it as it eclipses the sun.

Anonymous said...

In the words of the immortal bard, the Bruce, "The poets around here don't write nothing at all. They just stand back and let it all be."


recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Heck with the post. I'm gonna just sit here and stare at the Venus add. And work on my integrated aero-beard face fairing.

DoNotReact said...


grog said...

I heart Recumbabe,
and I have been automatically disqualified from the raffle.

Anonymous said...


J Scott. Riddle my Fiddle. said...

".......become the new captain of the Rhinestone Express."

Classic, just classic.

Anonymous said...

"we raced faster than David Byrne grinding on a bedazzled unicorn"

JB said...

"Bedazzled by David Byrne" = email from D. Byrne:

Subject: RE: raffle bike you agreed to curate
"put rhinestones all over the frame, or something"

The People of Detroit said...

LOL @ "Sometimes its OK to laugh at bike thief victims"


David Byrnes Butt Boy #1 said...

Wai'll yawl can kiss mah artisanal bedazzzeled axe.

Shram said...

Uh-oh, I've repainted my (un-)rare track bike with rattle cans and didn't bother to save the headbadge (lost those little tiny screws). Am I a marked man?

Anonymous said...

I guess Cav is a little excited about win #18.

Pele said...

David Byrne is all about soccer...

Anonymous said...

Is that the same David Byrne that used to sing for The Talking Heads ?

Anonymous said...

The passing of the beautiful godzilla doored in Brooklyn and flattened by a bus should be noted.

db said...

Would you call that homemade rear rack "artisanal metalsmithing"?

Anonymous said...

it's 'djembe', dipshit.

EDward said...

Funny you chose Thom Yorke - Radiohead has a link to on their band page. He's of the cycle chic persuasion.
Remain in Light does kick ass, and so does ok Computer.

Anonymous said...

sorry, djipshit

J-Bird said...

Djembe is easy to misspell on Wednesday Weed.

Anonymous said...

To change the colour of your U-lock, use coloured heatshrink. Much cheaper.

hey nonny mouse

(the Tour starts to get lumpy tomorrow....)

Nebraska bike commuter (non-DWI edition) said...

Byrne's Car would be a pretty good name for a band.

Nebraska bike commuter (non-DWI edition) said...

The bedazzled bike has pedal reflectors for extra dazzle.

Marcel Da Chump said...

I'm going back twenty years:
A messenger service I worked for had David Byrne's worldmusic label, LUAKA BOP, as a customer. The office was in a West Village townhouse, Twelve street between 5th & 6th Avenues-- if I remember correctly; artworks from Africa and India displayed thought out.

Dave said...

Wait so I need some clarification on this. David Byrne doesn't own a car. But he does own a drum?

Critical Ass said...

I wondered what had happened to Denver's top FGF douche crew.
This is pretty sad

Stranded said...

Let's lock Jay Leno (sans car collection) in a room with David Byrne and see who emerges still alive. The winner gets a bike to race Conan on his ultra-tall head tube machine.

Anonymous said...

Yesterday's Panties!
Tomorrow's Panties (in case I, you know, like forget and stuff, 'kay?)

Marcel Da Chump said...

*oops...displayed through out.

crosspalms said...

Calling something a hipster sensation doesn't seem like a great marketing idea

Trailer Park Cyclist said...


Chazu said...

Lasagna is one of the major food groups.

Anonymous said...

This was on the icanhazcheezburger website as a WIN:

But the chain line on that bike suggests it's a fixie (though it could be single-speed or have internal gears, my guess it's a fixie). Is there such a thing as a non-hipster fixie? Or, wait, maybe they mean the rider IS a hipster and the bike is going to kill THE RIDER. That's what I'd prefer to think, anyway.

Anonymous said...

Hee hee. That atrocious Lay-OHhhhhhhhhh-Turd tarckik bike is often prancing around on Bedford ave, of course. I'm all for freak-bike flag flying fancy, but it's disappointing the way hilpsters (black label groupies, etc.) think they came up with the idea of a tall bike or doing alley cats. People have been doing that shit for decades, kids. Sorry, but just like your fresh "tats", if you read a book maybe you'd figure out your "esoterica" wasn't your invention. So get over the identity crisis, or are you still throwing acid on windows of "your" bike culture?

Anonymous said...

< Is there such a think as a non-hipster fixie? >

Yes; track bikes used for racing and winter training bikes (for a start).

Do hipsters ride in the winter? I dunno......

hey nonny mouse

D. Burn said...

It's all there in the lyrics volken!

Ce que j'ai fais, ce soir la
Ce qu'elle a dit, ce soir la
Realisant mon bedazzler
Je me lance, vers la gloire, okay
Aey, aey, aey, aey, aey, aey, aey, aey
We are vain and we are rhinestoned
I hate people when they're not mon douche'

D. Byrnnnne said...

make that 'mondo douche'

Qu'est que c'est

Yes my ride does French

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I attest: hipsters don't ride in the winter. The Montreal hipsters, that is.

At the end of September, when it starts to rain frequently, the Super Hipsters (the ones that managed to ride through the whole summer) go and hide for the winter.

Which is a really good thing because the streets become less dangerous for everybody, including themselves.

In fact, so far this summer it has been raining quite a lot, so there is much less hipsters riding bikes...

Vive la pluie!! And please excuse my english!

Jasper said...

I've been riding fixed since most of those hipsters were in nappies (diapers to you). Luckily I forgot to curate my ride, so I don't get mistaken for one very often.

Anonymous said...

Apparently people are parting out their IKEA employee gift bikes and selling them on craigslist. Considering snagging this and converting it onto a sweet fixie and entering myself in the cycle courier championships here in Austin in October.

Anonymous said...

Cat sixed a demi hipster in Stanley park Van. BC today He was 20 something on crabon specialized black on black. Me 60+ on an 84 Pinarello, easily 7lbs. heavier; also did a major climb yesterday so legs not so fresh. Look on hipsters face priceless.(secret shame, I also own an S2)

leroy said...

My dog claims he saw a green Specialized abducted by little green men.

J i m s t e r said...

I like how they feel the need to explain to their audience that you need to purchase at least one ticket to win the raffle.

Because raffles can be so confusing to someone contemplating ownership of a bedazzled [object].

Anonymous said...


Marcel Da Chump said...

Nebraska bike commuter ( non-DWI edition ),
there was a band called Ed Gein's Car; named after the
real-life psycho killer.

Pontius Pilate said...



Bike Locks said...

Mini u-locks are very strong locks and its color is very nice. Its price is reasonable for everyone. Many people are use in UK.

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Fixie Bikes said...

They didn't need to make Thom Yorke any paler