Friday, December 12, 2014

BSNYC Friday Fun Quiz!

Earlier in the week I was talking about smug, meaningless infographics.  Along similar lines, some guy has now determined that if everybody who commuted into Manhattan drove a car, the island would need 48 new bridges or something:

Taylor calculated exactly how many bridges and tunnels would be needed for all these vehicles to enter Manhattan within a 4-hour period in the morning and a 4-hour period in the evening. In addition to Manhattan’s current 20 bridges and tunnels, he estimates it would require 48 new 8-lane crossings, which are drawn arbitrarily in the image above. For parking, Taylor estimates just the commuters would need the equivalent of a layer of underground parking under the entire island.

Good for you, Taylor.  So what the fuck is your point?  If everyone flew into Manhattan we'd need a giant runway.  If everyone ice skated into Manhattan we'd need more Zambonis.  If everybody paddled a goddamn gondola we'd need more canals:

By the way, Captain Brainiac drew 48 new bridges, and even with all that new construction not one of them leads to Staten Island.

I don't know if that makes him a bonehead or a genius.

In other news, cycling these days is all about hyper-specificity: the gravel bike, the fat bike, the aero road bike, and so forth.  In keeping with the zeitgeist, Rapha have now come out with a $350 cyclocross-specific shoe, and even the bike magazine reviewers think it's stupid:

Here's what they did:

Rapha took a mountain bike shoe, the Code, changed the upper, added $150 to the price, and now calls it a cyclocross shoe.

But the increased cost isn't arbitrary, and for that $150 you get a shoe that is laterally less durable and vertically less versatile than the cheaper mountain bike shoe on which it is based:

The price tag on the Cross Shoe is startling, to say the least, particularly given this shoe’s narrow range of use — they’re not durable enough for mountain biking, too warm to ride in the summer, and not warm enough to ride mid-winter.

Which basically comes down to this:

But the brand came up a little short on this one. The shoe, which is based on an already obsolete model from Giro, is not worthy of its $350 price tag.

In other words, Rapha obviously have a hit on their hands, because the new generation of cyclocross weenies are going to go nuts for these things.  After all, these are the same people who are buying Dugast tubulars at $125 a tire so they can ride on grass for 45 minutes.  And let's not forget those "killer value" $5,000 cyclocross bikes:

At $5,000, the RXC Pro Disc is a killer value for a carbon race bike...

It wasn't all that long ago that a "killer value" in a cyclocross bike meant buying a Surly Crosscheck or something, but apparently those days are over.

The revolution may not be televised, but the cyclocross has most certainly been Fredified.

And now, I'm pleased to present you with a quiz.  As always, study the item, think, and click on your answer.  If you're right you're not wrong, and if you're wrong you're not right--and also you'll see an appeal to those godless hipsters.

Thanks very much for reading, ride safe, and if you're buying gifts this weekend make sure to wear your shopping helment.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

1) Defending Tour de France champion Vincenzo Nibali confirms Astana is on drugs and so is everyone else.


2) How much for a gold-plated entry-level Giant?


(The other kind.  This kind wears cold cuts.)

3) Fill in the blank:  "Heroes Wear ________"

--Posthumous Decorations

(Typical bike messenger.)

4) Amazon has been subjecting bicycle messengers to:

--Geography tests
--Drug tests
--Time trials

5) It's enough with the fucking fat bikes already.


(" it me you're looking for?")

6) Whose buttock is Peter Sagan kneading?

--Alberto Contador's
--Ivan Basso's
--Oleg Tinkoff's
--He does not know, as the point of this team-building exercise is to figure it out solely by touch

(Just thinking about them makes him angry.)

7) Jerry Seinfeld thinks one-speed bikes are stupid.


***Special Triathlete-Themed Bonus Video***


Buffalo Bill said...

Happy friday all.

Spokey said...

podi podi

PK said...

Top 10!

Anonymous said...


Joe K. said...

That video of the Tridork just needs someone to come along and yell, "No bikes on the sidewalk!"

Unknown said...


McFly said...

That bonus video had some powerful curb appeal.

Anonymous said...



Triantelope on fire said...

Top ten and I spontaneously crashed with nobody around

Joe K. said...

A day in the Tri

Woke up, got on my bike,
Put a helment on my head
Found my way down an empty street,
And looking up, I noticed I was crashing down.

Grabbed my shoes

Fredrik Jönsson said...


crosspalms said...


Fart Slot said...

They want gondoliers to have license plates on their gondolas, too. They are a menace (in Venice)!

ken e. said...

take me back to the eighties please, i need a retry.

Raining Buckets in SF said...

Top 20 West Coaster

Anonymous said...

What was that stuff hanging from wild bill's hat?

ken e. said...

that is the most awesome triathlete video ever!

Anonymous said...

Toppus XX?

JB said...

"let me just slowly merge into this curb here, and [^*%@$#&]"

Aced the quiz, beeatches.

3G said...

Is Jerry riding a Budnitz!?

P. Bateman said...

did the Tri-dork hit a banana peel? what the hell? that is just a lovely bit of video.

A buncha faggots said...

Those hipster gondoliers are hazards to safe motor launch navigation, with no brakes or even reverse power!

Rivendell Splats said...

Never mind the problems for those trying to swim from bank to bank.
Whaddya call those people? Other than wet?

leroy said...

Well this is embarrassing.

My dog almost convinced me that "gondola" was a social disease one caught on the Staten Island Ferry.


Ride safe all!

(And if my dog asks, tell him "carpool" comes from the Italian term for a sinking gondola. I've got $5 riding on this.)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the Tri-video.
Biggest laugh of the day.

Spokey said...

'bout time I aced the quiz again.

thanks for an easy one snobbie

oh and


I guess those shoes are what you need for your new clear cut field. I'll keep riding on the street i guess. those things are 35 times more than i paid for the my current shoes.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Leroy:
Tell your dog the Pope has assured some kid that dogs go to heaven.

Triguy said...

I was choking on a Cliff Bar. What you saw on the tape is how one performs a self-Heimlich while riding a biek. Sometimes I have to do this 2 or 3 times.

JLRB said...

Neuman rides a single speed

Anonymous said...

What's up with Larry Steinfelds bike, anyway?

Grump said...

Ha!...I wouldn't spend $350 on a good road shoe..( But I would spend $150 on a $400 road shoe that had been gathering dust on a shelf for two years)...Yes, I am cheap. For CX, what's wrong with Mountain bike shoes?
Being on Astana is like having a job where you constantly F**k up, but are never fired.

Joe K. said...


Yes Newman did:

grog said...

MTB shoes were $50 on sale 5 years ago, and they still work.

P. Bateman said...

yeah, $350 for that piece of junk shoe?

save up another $150 and get these instead and improve your life by 35%

CommieCanuck said...

oh man, the Pope says all God's creatures are open to heaven.
WTF... that means mosquitoes in heaven, so what's fucking point, watch more porn.

CommieCanuck said...

Being on Astana is like having a job where you constantly F**k up, but are never fired.

So Andre Vinokourov should run for Senator in the Southern states? or city Councillor in Toronto?
Meh, I'd vote for him.

Gondoliera said...

Hey..diss water we go in, itza fulla da poop.

CommieCanuck said...

Taylor is an idiot, my 2010 plan for 48 zip lines into Manhattan was:
1. Safer
2. Faster
3. Better in snow
4. More woo hoo
5. Did not require healments

Flyover BC said...

Based on years of experience as a driver and working with planners, I can tell you that Taylor underestimated the carrying capacity of the proposed bridges by at least 50%. Therefore, Munhattun needs at least 72 eight-lane bridges, or 48 twelve-lane bridges.

herzogone said...

@JLRB and PotbellyJoe

The other Newman did also:

Comment deleted said...

Manhattan clearly needs at least one padding-lined bridge to allow triathletes safe access to the island.

McFly said...

I just gots me some Northwave Rebel SBS's for the mountains that are pretty damn swell. $160 MSRP on the Pro's Closet blowout for $69. They size very small so it took 2 tries and I actually called and had them measure from heel to toe with calipers.

They answers 300 mm and I was like WTF this is 'Murka!!!

Gonna re-tool my Lake's for proprietary field manuvers.

Regular guy said...

I was greatly concerned to hear about the crash at the International Mine Water Association>/a>. I take water quality issues very seriously.

dop said...

CD-No worries. I unclip &walk across the Broadway Bridge. It's not far from the corner of Seaman and Cumming.

P. Bateman said...

fyi - Formigli is doing their annual customframe give away. just give them your email and you are entered. no strings.

JLRB said...

I see a new movie production - The Devil Wears Rapha

Anonymous said...

Would like to know the sorry behind that crash, was he knocked out cold?

Looked like he got to close to the edge, then moved his hand which caused him to lose balance. Thanks for the carnage and another fun week of rough and tumble reading.

Mr. Pe·dan·tic said...

Yes Newman did:

Hey! There is a period incorrect coaster brake on that thing! (The bicycle thing, not the actor thing.)

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Nice sandwich grade quiz.
Comment #50
Non-Robotic Provenance 2796

Freddy Murcks said...

Aced the quiz. Can I now have the Bike Snob WCRM Certificate of Excellence in the Field of Superlatives that I have earned?

I do do have a question of my own, however? Who are the stupid assholes who are buying all of that shit from Rapha? I know a lot of stupid freds, but none of them are stupid enough to buy that overpriced shit. I guess it's possible that I just know a bunch of stupid, cheap-ass freds. But if that keeps them from wasting their money on Rapha gear, then so be it.

Also by the way, it was noted here that the Audi is the ultimate douche chariot. Based on my unscientific survey of displays of blatant douchery, I'd have to say that the Range Rover is in fact the ultimate Douche Wagon.

clyde said...

How bout if we just agree that Range Rover is the Audi of SUVs?

JB said...

Then what is an Audi SUV?

(didn't mean to blow your mind)

ken e. said...

i know this one!

an audi suv is a lemon.

JLRB said...

(Stealing McFly's line from yesterWednesday)

Rang Rover Range Rover, we call Fred over

yogisurf said...

Finally got 100%

FR8 said...

The horse's mouth.

Anonymous said...

Is Jerry riding a Budnitz?!

Old Man Budnitz said...

Is Jerry riding a Budnitz?!
That is what someone else said, but I’m not seeing the split top tube that is (one of my many) trademarks.

crosspalms said...

That map looks like a giant macrame project. It'll be quite a tourist draw.

Spokey, robot says it'll take 4228 tons of red yarn to make it. Sounds low to me.

Comment deleted said...

crosspalms, wrong units. It's 4228 gigaskeins.

Freddy Murcks said...

FR8 - That was fucking horrible. Can I get a refund.

Olle Nilsson said...

Jeez, with all the green lines pointing around the perimeter of Manhattan I got all excited, thinking WCRM wrote about that article I linked to yesterday about how you only go to jail in NYC if you drive without killing/maiming anyone.

Yeah, and Newman did ride a singlespeed, but who was talking about Paul?

Olle Nilsson said...

Although I guess you could say the same for Kramer.

bad boy of the north said...

hello neuman.....oops!ouch!

Pathetic Old Cyclist said...

Nice video, that's what it looked like when I did the same stupid thing 

wishiwasmerckx said...

I am an ultimate douche, so it follows that I drive an ultimate douche chariot.

I love my Range Rover. I love the sound of smaller cars, bicyclists and pedestrians as they crunch under my wheels.

I love filling up on premium gas while you lesser mortals scrape by on regular unleaded.

It is good to be the King.

Mr. Pedantic said...

I’m not recommending any one do this, but if you wanted to you could hear the start on the above video explaining the crash. It takes him over SIX MINUTES.

Mr. Pedantic said...

STAR not start.

(I know I need to learn to type.)

Spokey said...

will someone (or better two or three of you) please quit this blog!

it's Frīġedæġ-night and I'm sober.

Dooth said...

Anyone REMEMBER Seinfeld's first appearance on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson? I do. Homeboy had me in tears...and Johnny too.

dop said...

I listened to 2 minutes of the the triathlete's video explaining the crash.(He lost me going on about his dad picking him up & needing to get his medical card.

He broke his collarbone & split his helmet in two places. Fortunately he was wearing one.

ce said...

Dooth, funnily enough I was watching a documentary about Seinfeld last week which featured that appearance. From there it was really interesting learning about the tenuous beginnings of a show that went on to become such an institution.

slippery pete said...

14 seconds to illustrate the fabled JRA.

Anonymous said...

"If I can just get my one arm into an aero position, I can totally finish the 180k."- That's one high aussie.

Anonymous said...

Audi drivers around these parts are actually knowledgable about their cars and the A4 is a great car. The blond Moms from Naperville all drive Range Rovers and they look good in them.
The douches seem to be in Infinitys and Acuras.

The Voice of Reason said...

Science is what you can figure out for yourself, not what other people tell you.

”He broke his collarbone & split his helmet in two places. Fortunately he was wearing one.”

In the video he says “My head hit the concrete very hard, cracked the helmet in two places…”

This is how we know the “helmet” did not absorb a significant amount of the impact force, and the blow to his head would have been about the same even if he was not wearing a Styrofoam hat:

Take a piece of Styrofoam and bend it until it cracks in two. How much force did that take? Enough force to injury someone’s head? Styrofoam is very weak in bending and cracks with very little force. Styrofoam has more strength in compression, try pushing a piece straight down against a table and compare the force you have to use to crush it vs. what it took to crack it by bending. If the helmet was crushed uniformly and not cracked in two places we could assume force was absorbed by the helmet and not transferred to the wear’s head.

The fact that the wearer said “My head hit the concrete very hard…” is another indication the of the most of the force of the impact made it to his head without being attenuated by the Styrofoam.

Lani said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dop said...

Too bad we didn't have Go Pros back in 2002. We could be enjoying footage of Floyd Landis breaking his hip on a ride home from the gym. Roadies are notorious for poor bike handling skills, and their antics are a laugh a minute

Count of Sprint said...


duke of diversions said...


Count of Sprint said...

oh yeah, well

9.0553851 ^ 2 approximately back at you

skip said...


skip said...


Lani said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chad johnson said...

ochocinco plus one

El capitán sprint said...


ochenta y siete

R. Daneel Olivaw said...

so how does one post if you are a robot?

89 said...


i robot said...

i robot

Wellington said...

Those old gear clusters that weren't ramped or anything seemed to last way longer than the newer, thinner, higher tech ones. They took a bit of time to shift to the next sprocket but they lasted way longer. I miss those days when things lasted way longer and were simple to work on. I miss my mummy too. I miss Fanta orange pop. I'm going to hunker down in crawl space with some canned soup and bottled water until the world becomes a happy place again with things that one can repair instead of throw away.

Dave said...

Voice of Reason - not sure you've done due diligence on this scientific helmet research. Styrofoam is made in many different densities. It is quite difficult to break a helmet just by bending with one's hands. I don't know for sure that helmet manufacturers have also done good science on it, but I suspect they have. Here's all I know: I once fell with great force directly downward into the blacktop (my front tire popped and the wheel folded under major braking stress, going downhill) and when I stood up my helmet had a huge transverse crack in it, not from bending, but from straight on impact force. I had no concussion but I did have a crushed nerve in my neck that took a few months to heal. I am completely convinced that without the helmet I would never have stood up again. But feel free to believe what you believe. Anecdotes mean nothing to science, of course.

Dave said...

As it turns out there is considerable science involved in bike helmets, just like any other safety product:

The thing that caught my eye was the little graph early on showing impact force with and without helmets, and the ominous phrase "permanent brain damage". I will concede however that recent research shows little or no concussion reduction in twisting impacts.

Captain Oblivious said...



I thought it was Sunday? Where's the sun?

95 said...

95 ish

caged MonkeyMan(person)(entity) said...

I Been in Sorrow's Kitchen and Licked Out All the Pots

Spokey said...


Spokey said...

no one else is going for it

Spokey said...

then i will

Spokey said...

I would like to thank all the little gears who made this century possible

babble on said...

Mr Spokey- XX !!

Mr Wellington- I'm with you on that, but I sure hope you've a fucktonne of tins. You'd have more luck if instead you seek to find the happiness within. Just sayin...

Dave- and the science is clear. Torque causes a significant proportion of head injuries. All manufacturers should be required to use MIPS technology. Anything less is a farce.

Spokey said...


that snobbie must be getting old. I see that babs went back to legs on the blog but nothing is showing here.

babs too prurient or snobbie to prudish?

dop said...

tells us your beef, wellington

Anonymous said...

Who tweets more? VeloSnooze or the Onion? Can you tell the difference?

Anyway, surprised to not see WCRM listed as a celebrity

Curmudgeon was taken, what an injustice. Who curmudgeons more than Snob, and who is more full of sass? None, says me.


The Voice of Reason said...

”Styrofoam is made in many different densities.”

This is true. It is also true all bicycle helmets on the US market today are made from low density Expanded PolyStyrene (EPS, or Styrofoam.) Go to a store and pick up the different helmets. Do they all weigh about the same?

”It is quite difficult to break a helmet just by bending with one's hands. “

This is because your hands cannot generate the same force as a bike crash. If you cut or break a helmet into pieces you can bend a piece in your hands until it cracks. Breaking a piece in your hand does not tell you what happens to a complete helmet in a bicycle crash, but it will show you how little strength Styrofoam has in bending. By noticing after a crash most bicycle helmets are cracked more than crushed will give you an idea how little force was absorbed.

”The thing that caught my eye was the little graph early on showing impact force with and without helmets,…”.

The chart you link to appears to be results from the Snell FoundationBicyle Helmet Testing Standard impact management test (section E4 in the linked test standard.) To be sold as a “bicycle helmet” in the US, all helmets have to meet this test standard. They put the helmet on a test headform (like a manikin head) and drop in on an anvil. One requirement for passing the test is the Styrofoam has to crush and not crack. But in real life impacts bicycle helmets almost always crack, meaning the Snell test is not analogous to the real world. Therefore the chart you link to is not a picture of impact to you head with and without a bicycle helmet.

Spokey said...

To be sold as a “bicycle helmet” in the US, all helmets have to meet this test standard.

well not exactly. Helments are not required to meet Snell standards. Helments are required to to meet CPSC standards.

the short version from


A sticker inside the helmet tells what standard it meets. Helmets made for the U.S. must meet the US Consumer Product Safety Commission standard, so look for a CPSC sticker. ASTM's F1447 standard is identical. Snell's B-95 standard is tougher but seldom used.

the long version of requirements in the US is here:

if you browse long enough you can find Snell as one of several standards helments had to meet during an interim period. But that ended in the prior century.

Also I believe that Snell has incorporated more testing than you cite. Too lazy to look it up but I think it is either twisting or sliding or something. But more than just dropping a hammer on your head at any rate.

Spokey said...

oh and

Go to a store and pick up the different helmets. Do they all weigh about the same?

says nothing about foam density. You would need to know volume as well. And shell material, thickness, weight. Even that wouldn't get you very far either.

Spokey said...

and no dop

this is not some sneaky attempt to runup to a double century win

dop said...

bah humbug

The Voice of Reason said...

"says nothing about foam density. You would need to know volume as well. And shell material, thickness, weight.

Look at the different bicycle (not skateboard ) helmets for sale at your local store. Do you see a significant difference in shell material, volume of Styrofoam, etc?

Spokey said...

too lazy for the LBS but yes I do see a significant difference.

but I persevered and with a mighty struggle did a quick look at amazon. of the ones (looked at the first 10-15 listed from a search of 'bicycle helmet') that give some product weight (most don't) I saw a range of 12 to 20 oz. That's pretty significant. And similar size differences too. One with no product weight claimed a ship weight of 12 oz so that's really different.

All I was doing was showing you that your argument has several flaws. Rethink it if you want. I'm going back to waiting for some more people to quit the forum so I can have a couple of sunday night shots.

feel free to get the last word in

Foam Dome said...

I even use a helmet for safest sex.

The Voice of Reason said...

”…did a quick look at amazon...the first 10-15 listed from a search of 'bicycle helmet') that give some product weight (most don't) I saw a range of 12 to 20 oz. That's pretty significant. …All I was doing was showing you that your argument has several flaws.

Density of commercial available EPS range from 0.75 to 4 pounds per cubic foot.
Sources: 1

If some bicycle helmets were made out of low density/strength Styrofoam and others from high density/strength the weigh difference for the entire helmet would be 2 to 3 times, not 2/3 times.

Also I believe the Federal Government derived the US Consumer Product Safety Commission standard from the Snell testing procedures.

”Also I believe that Snell has incorporated more testing than you cite. Too lazy to look it up but I think it is either twisting or sliding or something.

The entire Snell test standard for bicycle helmets is at the link posted at 7:11 PM above.

Anonymous said...

Helments. No discussion of helment standards is complete without including ASTM Standard D3492 and for "personal dressings" it's companion D7661.

dop said...

Hey, I didn't mean to start another discussion about helmets, I was just being an asshole.

Bryan said...

That bonus video....trying to get us to date other tridorks

They don't need to breed if they can't do something as simple as ride a bike!

JB said...

Voice of Reason:
Most of your argument is based on the low flexural (i.e., bending) strength of EPS. I'll take your word for that. But, in what situation will the EPS of a bike helment see bending stresses? It's wrapped around someone's head, so it's almost always going to be in compression. If the EPS splits/cracks, then it's failed in compression, after absorbing a lot of energy.

-not a wear-a-helment freak

Spokey said...

last night almighty LOB revealed to me in a vision that if i breed with a tridork i'll go blind.

The Voice of Reason said...

"But, in what situation will the EPS of a bike helment see bending stresses?

Styrofoam is polystyrene with a gas (most often pentane) blown in under (the right amount) of heat and pressure to form bubbles. Take a piece of Styrofoam and press down on it down evenly until it crushes. As you press down the gas in the bubbles compress and pushes back. The material fails when the polystyrene forming the bubbles tears. But there is a bubble on the other side of the tear, and the gas that was in each bubble is still inside the “double bubble” and can still push back when compressed. The Styrofoam retains its compressive strength until enough bubbles have torn to allow the gas to escape to the outside. This is why Styrofoam is strong in compression.

Take a bicycle helmet and hold it so you can see the inside, and you have one hand on each side where the straps attach. Push your hands together hard enough and you will see the helmet try to get more oval: the sides you are pushing getting slightly closer together and the front and back getting further apart. The edge of the helmet has to bend to allow this shape change.

If you hold the helmet the same way and smash it down on a table on the front hard enough to break, you will see the Styrofoam crushed at the point of impact. But you will also see cracks on the outside of the edge between where your hands are and the point of impact. These cracks are due to the bending stresses induced by the edge of the helmet being forced into a less round shape by the impact. (Less round = front and back getting closer together, sides getting farther apart.”

Crushing at the point of impact absorbs a decent amount of the force. Cracking along the edge away from the point of impact absorbs almost no force. Once the edge cracks all the way through the helmet has basically no ability to absorb and additional force.

The Voice of Reason said...

And another thing.

and several others show the effectiveness of bicycle helmets in reducing head acceleration from an impact to vary linearly with speed up to about 8 m/s (about 18 MPH) but head acceleration increases rapidly at faster impact speeds. These higher speed impacts involve less crushing and more bending of the helmet.

Most bike accidents resulting in deaths and serious injuries are when a
motor vehicle hits a cyclists.

And fatalities go up dramatically withmotor vehicle speed

So how significant is the protection from a Styrofoam hat that works up to 18 MPH?

JB said...

VOR @ 11:28:
Yes, holding both sides of the helment and smashing it on a table will create flexural stress. But this is what is happening when a helmet is on someone's head and that head/helment strikes a surface. The head is pressing on the helment, which is pressing on the surface. Nothing is pressing on the edges (where the straps attach) of the helment. There is only compression between the head and the surface.

JB said...

"But this is NOT what is happening..."