Thursday, June 12, 2014

Love to Love You Baby

The Tour de France has been sullied by innumerable scandals over the years.  Doping, press cars sending riders headlong into barbed wire fences, finish line banner construction right out of the Stonehenge scene from "Spinal Tap"...  And now we can add cultural insensitivity to the list, as the Wall Street Journal reports that Yorkshiremen (is there a gender-neutral demonym for people from Yorkshire, and if so is it "Yorkies?") are being asked to refrain from using their endearing colloquialisms while helping out with the race:

"Avoid using words such as 'mate,' 'love' or 'darling'—they may sound friendly to you, but they could offend some people," he read on an April Tuesday.

The banishment of pet names that roll freely off the tongues here has stuck a stick in the spokes of pre-race preparations for the first part of the 2,270-mile Tour de France cycling race, which begins in Yorkshire this summer. The race hasn't started in England since 2007.

My first thought was, "Really?  Who's going to be offended by that?"  But then I read on:

Mr. Watt, a Tour de France volunteer from Edinburgh, said the first time a male bus driver called him "love" he did a double take. But now that he's lived in York for years, he embraces it.

Ah, I see.  In Yorkshire, men call other men "love."  Yeah, that's not going to sit well with your typical American moron.  (Yes, I realize "American moron" is redundant, like saying "ATM machine" or "Schleck crash.")  Just imagine typical American Keith Maddox were to come over for the race, and some affable Yorkie were to call him "love."  Can you imagine his response?

(Artist's rendering of Keith Maddox.  The tan line is from his kippah.)

"Hew yew cawlin' 'luv?'  Yew a how mow?  I awta run yew inna deeitch!  Cumma think aboudit, I awta run all them Tawr Day Fraynce bye-cye-clits inna deeitch too!  Why I come here for anyhow?  I hain't really thunk this vay-cay-shun through.  Dang Groupons..."

But that's not all, and the tourist visiting Yorkshire also runs the risk of being called "petal dust:"

He said he especially likes it when a colleague refers to him as "petal dust" or when he walks into his local bar in York and the bartender calls him "flower." (Mr. Watt, himself, only uses "mate" and mostly avoids referring to people as "pet," "duck" or "treasure," terms used in the region.)

"Petal dust?"  What does that even mean?  Sounds like something Chris Froome would say to taunt Alberto Contador:

("Eat my pedal dust, Fingerbanger.")

Or else something teenagers would use to get high:

(Teenager getting high off "petal dust.")

Anyway, apparently whoever wrote the manual is afraid of exchanges like this:

Many from Yorkshire say the terms of endearment are part of being polite. If, for example, tourists get too close to the cycling route, someone from Yorkshire might say: "Excuse me love, can you move back?"

What, this is a problem?  It sure sounds a lot better than the "Move it, asshole," you'd get if the Tour came through New Jersey.

Speaking of drug parades, someone alerted me to this article on the ethics of doping, though I can't for the life of me remember who it was or how they alerted me:

I only skimmed the article because I was high out of my mind on petal dust, but among the points it raises is that even classical musicians use drugs to aid their performance, so what's the difference when athletes do it?

There are many other forms of mental doping. An essential test of archery, shooting or snooker is the ability to control one’s nerves. Propranolol, widely used by classical musicians to improve performance, reduces anxiety and tremor. Stimulants such as modafinil (a wakefulness and attention promoter) has recently been used in sports such as running, shot put and baseball, and stimulants similar to amphetamines have long been used in baseball, cycling and other sports. These are all forms of mental doping. Since they undermine the need for courage, determination and ‘toughness’, our very nature as human agents, they should be banned.

What?  Classical musicians are doping?!?  Fuck that!  If I find out Yehudi Menuhin was dirty then I'm throwing out my entire Deutche Grammophon collection:

(The Eddy Merckx of the fiddle.)

I may have to make one of those caulking gun hypodermic needles and bring it to Avery Fisher Hall.

Anyway, I'm tempted to say the answer to doping is for us all to stop taking sports so seriously and come to terms with the fact that most of what we're watching is bullshit, but given that we're still willing to believe in ideas as absurd as "religion" and "God" then the chances of our accepting the truth as far as sports are concerned is virtually nil.

Still, I suppose there's a certain beauty in humanity's willingness to hold out hope for the future.  Sure, it's delusional because we're all doomed, but what is life if not a flailing delusion as we hurtle inexorably into the void?  Our instinct is to live in denial of our own futility, which is why we also make art, and ride bikes, and "curate" blogs, and launch Kickstarters like this one for the virtual bike shop of the future:

So one day I'll be able to "walk" into a "virtual" fixie boutique containing almost no merchandise and make my avatar stare at a blank wall?  Sure, that sounds way better than the Nashbar website.

If you're wondering why the video comes to an abrupt end, it's because that's the moment in which the sun goes supernova and we're all reduced to cosmic petal dust.

Speaking of art, I received an email from the Oregon Manifest about the "City Helment Series:"

The first thing I noticed of course was that they misspelled "helment" in the graphic, so I corrected it for them:

Anyway, here's what it's about:

CHI, NYC, PDX, SEA, SF!  We've teamed up with the talent magnet that is Artcrank to create one-of-a-kind helmet designs celebrating our five cities.

An Artcrank artist from each city has been busy working on a one-of-a-kind helmet design inspired by cycling in their city.  In the weeks ahead we'll be releasing the individual designs and sharing "making-of" videos showing their design process from beginning to end.

On July 25 at our five reveal parties, we'll be raffling off each city's helmet to benefit our bike advocacy partner in that city.  You could win a one-of-a-kind helmet and support your local bike advocacy group at the same time!

PDX :  Brad Simon
NYC  :  Meera Lee Patel
SF :  Jessica Henry
SEA  :  Ellis Latham-Brown
CHI  :  Justin Nottke

Naturally, I wanted to see who they'd chosen to represent New York City.  "Let me guess, it's someone who lives in Brooklyn," I thought, and of course I was right:

Her illustrations are inspired by the magical mysteries of nature, the quiet stories that lace through everyday life, and the bold colors of her native India. 

Sounds lovely and all, but I'm not sure what that has to do with something that's ostensibly made to keep your head from getting smashed in on the mean streets of New York City.  I certainly don't care for graffiti "art," but if there was ever an opportunity to get someone who's handy with a can of spraypaint to make a badass helment that looks like a shattered skull covered with spikes then this would be it.

Then again, sometimes I forget I'm old, and that the new New York City is about sunshine and petal dust and pickling tomatoes and keeping chickens in your backyard and "curating" an apiary.

Also, there's no way this NYC helment will be worse than the one designed by David Byrne:

Of course, if someone did make a totally badass smashed skull helment covered in spikes, you'd need an appropriate bike to ride while wearing it, and here it is via a reader named Nick:

Years in the making. First prototype for the public to buy. $713.00 OBO Serious inquiries only please.

I wonder of the production model will also have Biopace chainrings.


samh said...


Logbig said...



Anonymous said...

Podium (?)

Anonymous said...

Hey, sexy, lookin' good!

Rusty Red said...

Love you, podium!

Olle Nilsson said...

Cat 6

crosspalms said...

What's the fender for?

babble on said...

LOL! Years in the making!? Wow.

Spokey said...

top 10?

Olle Nilsson said...

Those city helments give you funny tan lines. And they make you sweaty.

Marcel Da Chump said...

Pedal dusted

Anonymous said...

Meera Lee Patel, let's make something beautiful together indeed.

Schisthead said...

Spooky, just watched Spinal Tap this morning.

That bicycle would be funny, if it wasn't so sad...

Spokey said...

Does this mean we have switch from frog to amphibious personage?

robots inteenhe paffages won't be tolerated in this year's TDF

PotbellyJoe said...

I have a serious inquiry for the design of Monster Bike (I don't care what he calls it)...

How much petal dust does one have to sniff before this becomes a good idea? Alos, you may want to kick around the idea of kickstarting a campaign on kickstarter to start funding this...

Anonymous said...

Hello love, somewhat non plussed over hurtling into to the smiley faced void.

Dave said...

I had $713, but I spent it all on petal dust.

Spokey said...

I was taking that slight of New Jersey personally until I thought that snobby was probably raised in the Gowanus canal.

so say it was just an onditlo construct. I say snobby is just jealous to be stuck in new amsterdamn

balls™ said...

It's been years since I bought a new bike. I should buy another bike.

Not. That. Once.

Also, I think you can guarantee the seat on that monster has been ridden in a naked bike ride. It's got someone's scranus all over it.

Buffalo Bill said...

And the lard said, 'Thou shalt not ride bouncy bikes. And whosoever shalt ride upon a bouncy bike shall be scorned and fed to the wildcats.'


Anonymous said...

The time for art has passed. Art is over.

Spokey said...

so someone tell that to Art

Description rduirity Yeah I'd like a description of that

dancesonpedals said...

Yehudi Menuhin? I thought that was yiddish for, "You da man"

babble on said...

Oh no! We've reached peak art, too?

Greenbelt said...

Yehuda Moon

Chickenhom said...

The gender neutral demonym for Yorkies is actually "sheep-shagging bastards."

Anonymous said...

Patel dust

dcee604 said...

That bike hurts my eyes! Maybe I need some drugs.

Kenny Banya said...

Totally Custom you say...

crosspalms said...

I think he meant costume.

Kenny Banya said...

Hey Snobby, here's $75,000 for your taking:

(Also, I'm too lazy to put it in link format)

Mr Plow said...

Why must people keep trying to mix art and bicycle cycling?

Anonymous said...

You know I didn't actually think about it, but we probably have reached Peak Art. Art is done by people whose basic survival needs have already been taken care of, so art tends to happen only where there is abundance.

Anyway the Tour is full of shit, like we needed more evidence of it. Their slogan is "When in Rome, tell the Romans to please stop being so Roman-ish or else it might offend all our deluded drugged-up money-whores and their sycophants."

Anonymous said...

Drugged up money-whores and their sycophants.
Now dat's funny right there.

Glad to hear you're riding Babs !!


Comment deleted said...

$713? I might consider $710, but $713? Forget it!

McFly said...

All this talk of futility and hurling pointlessly on a big ball of dirt has me thinking I should politely inquire more often to SEE THEM TITTIES GIRL....

Anonymous said...

i actually know what a biopace chainring is .. i feel so leet

Unknown said...

They spelled "stationery" wrong.

Anonymous said...

No, no, no. The kickstarter is to stop it from happening. Please give generously.


RoadQueen said...

Drugs are bad.

Fred Nifacent said...

Im from new jersey and go to the shore, the water is not bright and move it, asshold

McFly said...

I learned a lot of the Tool & Death trade from a gentleman named Winston from merry Ol' England. He let me call him a Wanker for about 6 months before he said, "You are basically calling me a Jackass."

Bloody 'ell.

Olle Nilsson said...

Chickenhom, that's gender neutral? Nevermind the men, that's something about Yorkshire women I didn't need to know.

mikeweb said...

In case you didn't know, Carlos Kleiber is the Roger De Vlaeminck of conductors.


leroy said...

Oh great. My dog saw that Ms. Patel quotes Bukowski and now he's smitten.

He asked me if I thought she would paint a dog.

I told him that probably depends.

Does he want one coat or two?

Anonymous said...

McFly 1:32 pm - Comment of the Day and Winner of the Internet

mikeweb said...

You can take the girl out of Joisey, but you can't take your 908 area code to Brooklyn.

P. Bateman said...

you know who else couldnt pay attention because he was on that dust?

everlast of house of pain on their highly underrated second album.

Spokey said...

I thought wanker was more jerkoff

Fred Nifacent

I gradeated from Manasquan so I do know they're wankers at the shore.

But here in the farm belt with mooing cows to calm the frazzled nerves of our daily commute, we are more genteel.

"Please sir. We'd mighty appreciate it you could move along. If not, would you care for a full or partial choke on the over under?"

robot says he knew NJ shore wanks are all rhreadi vulgar

Anonymous said...

I'm gonna build one of these contraptions but add directed explosives on the corners to protect me from the Keith MadOxes of the world -

commentatorbot_cima_coppi said...

I wonder if they know how much more Yorkshire council paid for the privilege to host than, say, the last remote location? That money went somewhere and not in a good way.

In all seriousness, Yorkshire's a great place to ride... if you can deal with the traffic, the inconsistent weather. I don't know if they still permit smoking in the pubs, but it made things difficult for me and my delicate sensibilities to just enjoy a pint.

Greyspoke said...

I am going to have to start using the word 'twaddle'

Anonymous said...

Those geniuses suggesting deregulating doping think it is all good because it doesn't directly affect them.

If you asked the author about starting their child on a totally untested PED program in their doped shan-gri-la, you suddenly get a different answer. Cowards.

babble on said...

Oh here we go. Why oh why do people do that!? You should have told him that calling someone a wanker is actually a compliment. Everybody knows a cocksucker is a good thing, but we use it as an insult. What's up wif dat?!

I am a proud and happy wanker.

Er, and it's not technically riding. I am simply using Bea bike as a wheelchair here in the hood.

dnk said...

The virtual bike store on kickstarter cancelled its fundraising project an hour ago.

Was it the Snob's post that sent them packing? Or the fact that the fundraising campaign has been up for more than a month, yet had only raised $6 bucks?

dnk said...

Correction: 6 british pounds

Anonymous said...

What makes you think the Sun lifecycle will end as a supernova? Certainly, nobody will be around even if it could...

I recommend keeping discussion to helments, drugs, and fancy bikes.

Spokey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dooth said...

I'm co-opting those endearing Yorkshirean colloquialisms... "love-ing and darling-ing" all over New Yorkie.

Anonymous said...

It seems the main problem with the Yorkie nicknames is that they're too affectionate(*), so how about calling people something like Lovelydouche, Magicalcunt, or Fucky to kind of temper it a bit?

(*) Well of COURSE an overly affectionate salutation is a problem, because
A) it 100% means they're gay (science)
B) that TOTALLY MATTERS, and specifically
C) all gays should go fuck off instead of constantly trying to get into our asses all the time because we're so freaking HOT
D) upon being treated nicely by a member of the same sex, it is necessary that one should fly into an angry rage immediately.

Anonymous said...

...and if you don't, it means
E) you're gay too, and specifically

Anonymous said...


Flyover BC said...

I'm so embarrassed, because we flyovers are so backwards, if not actually moronic.

I still have biopace chain wheels on the older bike.

I was hoping they'd be retro-trendy since Froome used ellipticals last year.

Olle Nilsson said...

Wildcat's posts from 2 years ago would have been a lot different if Wiggo was from Yorkshire. Thanks Wiggo, you big hairy treasure.

Flyover BC said...

I think "Morons" is a redundancy that applies to probably half of the human population.

If you realize how dumb the average person is, it's more important to know that half of everybody else is dumber.

To be fair, half of everybody else is also smarter, but those are the people I rarely deal with.

The captcha needs needs to clean its lens, unless the clue is blurry mailbox

Anonymous said...

No wonder Wiggo ain't going. He'd be calling everyone "cunt" as his preferred term of endearment. Either that or instead of his vocabulary, people would find his sideburns offensive.

babble on said...

But cunt IS a term or endearment! God knows I love mine. Dat's a fact. Anybody who doesn't love a cunt is all messed up inside.

Spokey said...

babs LOL

you're one to talk about messed up inside. At least at the moment

heueda was OK for a late day snort

mikeweb said...

Why not visit New York City for your summer vacation!

Just don't drink the water

Spokey said...

was that leroy's dog

it appears todllym. I'm staying over in america. you don't see the farmers doing that with their cows

JLRB said...

Why Love should Treasure a trip to NYC with your mate

Go for a ride on a Citibike - sit on a saddle that someone's sweaty nekid azz slid all over

when you get thirsty, stop at the water fountain for some dog azz

dancesonpedals said...

how can you not love nyc...i rode down seaman this morning, and got off AFTER cumming(s) was at Dyckman....who is not a super hero

God said...

Damn you

Anonymous said...

Snob PLEASE include a TRIGGER ALERT before posting any photos of HOT CHICKS in the blog. I come here expecting to see images of emaciated professional riders and schlubby Portlanders with stupid tattoos and so it was deeply disturbing to be reminded that the world does not consist solely of these people!!!

babble on said...

Well... ok. But still. You know it's true.

Dis Fookin Guy said...

Whenever there's "art" on the subject your lifestyle/hobby/niche/whatever it is almost guaranteed to be shit. (Unless your thing is art, then carry on).

Bicycle themed art exhibit is almost always shit.

I'm a motorcyclist and I've seen some motorcycle "art" and it was shit too.

Stop fucking bringing art into unartsy shit.

Al Dimond said...

From the article on legalizing doping: "In transcranial electrical stimulation (TES), a light electrical current is placed over specific areas of the brain via a portable stimulator."

Tran-scranial electrical stimulation? That might change the nature of sport...

Art said...

Art art art art Art

A r t

A right?

whtrshFrd said...

Oh, holy crap. I believe I'm a money whore.

Anonymous said...

I spent the first twenty years of my life living in Yorkshire. Twwed jackets and flat caps are part of my cultural heritage, and my Southerner wife still mocks me for saying bath rather than barth.

Oddly, I never ever heard another man call any other man 'love' or 'duck' or anything like that...

BamaPhred said...

Need a SD card? I will be sitting on a bench outside Yankee stadium, dressed incognito in the usual Groucho Marx glasses, nose, moustache disguise, wearing a white wife beater, bib shorts, knee high neon socks, and road cleat Sidis. Challenge phrase: Keith Maddox. Your Response AYHSMB.

BamaPhred said...

And lastly, Are there notable Yorkshire sheepshaggers? A Wiki sample: Captain James Cook, Guy Fawkes, the Bronte sisters, and Joe Cocker. Don't see a pattern except for the penchant for shagging sheep, I suppose

Vlad from Bucharest said...

Interestingly enough, the guy who wrote the article about classical musician doping is called Savulescu, which is a Romanian name. Like Ceausescu (our world famous dictator), Draculescu (Dracula's original name before moving to LA) and George Enescu. The latter is not only a famous Romanian composer (well, famous in his hometown still means famous) but also - prepare to be shocked - Yehudi Menuhin's teacher!!!!!
Mere coincidence? I think not. We Romanians hate each other on principle and hate the fact that we were born Romanians. Savulescu's article is a barely veiled attempt to discredit our most famous composer. Or perhaps even sinisterer motives are at play here.
Anyway, dear Mr. Bikesnobnyc, will you please write something about the World Football (or Sucker, as you Americans call it) Championship in Brasil? Way more people are watching that than Tour de France.

White Satan said...

Meera Lee Patel?
You can't spell infidelity without infidel.

White Satan said...

Meera Lee Patel?
You can't spell infidelity without infidel.

JLRB said...

Early Friday quiz warm up - what would you rather do:
1 wear one of NYC's new hellmeat

2 rude the $713 bikecycle

3 slide down a 50 foot razor blade into a pool of rubbing alchohol

BamaPhred said...

By ruding do you mean twerking my nekkid scranus all over it? Need to know so I can write in none of the above to answer

JLRB said...

None of the above is not an option - but you can combine 2 or more

Anonymous said...

"Anyway, I'm tempted to say the answer to doping is for us all to stop taking sports so seriously and come to terms with the fact that most of what we're watching is bullshit, but given that we're still willing to believe in ideas as absurd as "religion" and "God" then the chances of our accepting the truth as far as sports are concerned is virtually nil."

You keep taking it to the next level. How could global warming be true if the AntiChrist is suppsed to be the big evil we await? And anytime you mention Nashbar It makes me smile. Do you run any of their gear besides the closeout chamois cream?

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