Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Fred's Atomic Dustbin

So where do you like to ride?


Don't even answer.

Because whatever you're about to say is BO-ring.

See, you're not like Lucas Brunelle, whose seat is "sharp as a razor," and who tears around Chernobyl while you're gunning for the Strava KOM on your local molehill:

Yep, that's right, Chernobyl.  You know, the site of the worst nuclear power plant disaster in history?  Indeed, a number of people have brought this video to my attention recently, but to be honest I ignored them.  That's because for some reason I had it in my head that the'd already done the whole nuclear power plant thing and that I'd already mentionedit:

But then I remembered that in the video I was thinking of he only thought he was riding through a nuclear power plant, when in fact he was merely riding through a coal-fired power station:

So presumably he was so embarrassed by this that he said, "Fuck it, I'm going to Chernobyl!" in order to reestablish his street cred.

Anyway, so I've finally watched it, and it's got everything you'd expect from a video in which Lucas Brunelle rides through a radioactive wasteland.  There are respirators:

And questionable beverage choices:

And gratuitous shots of dead dogs:

And of course plenty of Geiger counter sounds:

(Geiger counters are the new Garmin.)

Good thing he's breathing through his shirt, I'm sure that will do a lot of good.

But most importantly, the film promises that answer to that age-old question:


All from the mind of Lucas Brunelle:

I'm not sure what happens in "Lucas Brunelle Goes To Chernobyl Part II," but I'm really hoping he does battle with an enormous mutant panda who got that way from eating bikes made from radioactive bamboo.

But before you get too impressed, keep in mind that visiting Chernobyl today is not exactly a death sentence.  In fact, it's actually a hot spot for tourists now:

Today, the number of tourists seeking to head deep into Chernobyl's Exclusion Zone, a 30-kilometer radius of contaminated land around the power plant, supports several tour firms.

So hot in fact that, when visiting Kiev, tourists choose it over the tank driving tour and the shooting-guns-with-hot-chicks tour:

So really, how dangerous could it be?

This isn't exactly cutting-edge stuff here--Anthony Bourdain went there years ago, for chrissakes!

I wouldn't be surprised if Brunelle was subject to more radiation while walking through the airport medal detector than he was at Chernobyl.  But yeah, crackling Geiger counters.  Scaaary!

Speaking of well-worn paths, riding your bike and then taking the train is apparently "one of the hottest things in cycling right now:"

With an assist from the train, multimodal cycling lets riders go out farther since they don't have to pedal back. And while it's hardly a new thing to take your bike on a train — multimodal commuters have been doing it for ages — many road cyclists we know are doing more big one-way rides like this, with several using apps like Strava and RideWithGPS to help them find new routes and plan distant outings that normally might be out of reach.

Certainly this is nothing new for the tweedies:

And even I myself partake in the multimodal adventuring, so how hot could it be?

I was sort of blown away by this stroke of brilliance though:

If you're in a jam and need to get your bike on the train that doesn't allow them, you can usually get away with putting the bike in trash bags. (This is easier to pull off if you're in street clothes.) Two extra-large contractor bags usually do the trick, one for the wheels and one for the frame.

A photo posted by Neil Bezdek (@neilbezdek) on

1) Okay, that's just clever;


2) Leave it to the MTA to say no to bikes, but yes to what as far as they know are some giant bags of trash, if not dismembered body parts.

Of course, if you do hop a train as part of your sub-epic cycling day trip, be sure to pack a Specialized flat-fix kit that only works with their special saddle:

It’s essentially a fancy tool roll that bolts into a (compatible) Specialized seat. It has a pocket for an (included) tire lever, a 25g CO2 cartridge, and a fat Velcro strap for locking it all down.

See, tool rolls are the new saddle bag, so leave it to Specialized to come up with a proprietary one.  As for why people seem to be abandoning saddle bags for tool rolls these days, that I don't know, but I suppose the aesthetic goes better with this whole new folksy rail-ridin' sensibility that is now pervading cycling--at least according to Business Insider, anyway.

Lastly, a reader by the name of Steve has sent me this dramatic marketing video for Fujitsu in which they demonstrate how their technology will save our lives because we're cyclists and therefore, apparently, stupid:

First, the cyclist salmons out of a parking lot or something:

Then he rides off a curb at slow speed:

Which of course results immediately in a "serious head injury:"

But wait.  He couldn't have had a head injury!  Let's look at the evidence:

Firstly, he's wearing a helme(n)t, and science has proven that you can't injure your head if you're wearing a helme(n)t on it.  (In fact, it's debatable that you can even crash in the first place while wearing a helme(n)t.)  Secondly, the top tube of the bike is sheared off, so clearly his groin took the brunt of the impact.

One thing's for sure though, which is that they should have hired a better stuntman:

He's probably got plenty of time while he waits for Fukushima to cool off.