Thursday, November 10, 2016

Sorry I'm late, I guess society is collapsing already.

What has the fins of a humpback whale, the skin of a shark, and costs $4,000?

If you answered two Anthony Weiners, you're wrong:

No, the answer is of course Zipp's new Fred casters, which harness the awesome marketing power of "biomimicry:"

Utilizing the principles of the emerging science of biomimicry, Zipp engineers studied the environment around them for instances of how nature solved similar problems of speed, control, and efficiency for the next generation of Zipp wheels. Think of a humpback whale’s fast but graceful movements thanks to the special features on the leading edge of its pectoral fins, or the unique micro texture of a shark’s skin, which gives it the ability to glide effortlessly through the water. These structures inspired Zipp advanced development engineers to, for the first time, systematically apply biomimicry to solve the complex challenge of designing a wheel that reduces both aerodynamic drag and side force.

Oh my god.

Please allow me to translate:

Utilizing time-tested principles of bilking Freds out of large sums of money by turning scientific terms into marketing buzzwords, Zipp's marketing team turned to Google to solve the problem of how wheels can't get any rounder and found this cool-sounding word "biomimicry."  Think of a humpback whale's ability to make Freds feel better about the fact that they're at least 40lbs too heavy to get any performance benefit from these things, and think of a shark's skin because sharks are cool.  These magnificent creatures inspired Zipp's hand-picked team of bullshit artists to solve the complex challenge of selling even more overpriced wheels to sucky Freds and tridorks who already own multiple pairs.

Come on, this is even dumber than Fizik's "Spine Concept," where you were supposed to pick an inner "scranus animal" before buying a saddle:

(I notice "I'm easily duped" is not an option.)

And yes, Brooks and Fizik are both under the same corporate umbrella, but at least Brooks's "Retrogrouch Concept" was a little more honest:

No matter how you responded the answer was always "B17."

Anyway, in addition to biomimicry and wheels inspired by the stiffness of whale boners, Zipp has also come up with a staggering amount of proprietary gimmicks.  Here they are:

HexFin™ ABLC dimples
Showstopper™ brake track
ImPress™ NSW graphics technology (which I assume refers to the whale boner decals)
Cognition™ hubset
Axial Clutch™

Holy shit, I feel like I just got HyperFoiked!

We're getting very close to the point where wheels will have more bullshit trademarked terms than actual spokes.

But they are hand-curated Indianapolis:

Each Indianapolis-made 454 NSW rim requires 12 hours to create and represents a true blending of hand craftsmanship and advanced manufacturing techniques. After each rim is laid up, molded, drilled, printed, and inspected, every wheel is assembled and tensioned entirely by hand in Indianapolis. 454 NSW rims are laced to our Portuguese-made Cognition hubs using Belgian Sapim® CX-Ray spokes and Secure Lock nipples for unmatched performance and reliability that is made to last.

Yet after all that you still suck.

No word if they're gravel compatible, so that can only mean a more expensive version is in the works.  Presumably this pair will cost twice as much due to its biomimetic Gastrolith™ gizzard stone rim bed technology.

In other news, like many Americans I'm still thinking about the election.  Specifically I'm thinking about how years from now when we're part of Putin's global empire we'll turn to each other and say, "So where were you when you learned Trump won?"  Well, all I know is when I got on a subway train in Brooklyn everything was fine, and by the time I got off the train in the Bronx Trump had clinched it.

I shuffled off the train as if part of a funeral procession, but incredibly there were signs of hope!  The area around the subway station is a pedestrian nightmare, but now it was littered with traffic cones.  "Great!," I thought to myself.  "They're finally going to do something about the quagmire of diagonal parking spaces:"

"And the goddamn sidewalk crater!"

As visions of pedestrian plazas and traffic calming and buffers discouraging heedless drop-offs danced in my head I checked out this sign and found out the reason for the cones is that they were filming an episode of "The Blacklist:"

My hopes were dashed twice in rapid succession.

Speaking of the election, I finally got a chance to take my official post-Election Day ride this morning, which is the reason for my more-than-usual tardiness:

I was very nearly home and riding up a particularly steep street when an oncoming motorist stopped and asked for directions.

"Were's the blah-blahblah-blah?," she asked, a cigarette dangling from between her fingers.

No excuse me, nothing.

It's a pretty quiet street, but there we were in the middle of it, with traffic liable to arrive at any time.  I didn't immediately know the place she was asking for but I thought I did.  I felt nervous and at the same time wanted to be helpful and so racked my tiny brain.  Then it hit me:

Why the fuck am I bothering?

"Sorry, I dunno," I answered, and rode off.

And at that moment, I made a solemn promise to myself, which is to never, ever give a motorist directions again, no matter what the circumstances.  I don't care if we're right in front of the place you're trying to get to, 'cause I ain't telling.  The most you're getting out of me is a "No idea."  Too often I have been stopped while cycling, 2nd Ave. traffic bearing down on us while some moron asks me how to get to 1st Ave.  Too often I have been stopped while pushing a stroller in a crosswalk, my tiny window rapidly closing while some vapid SUV pilot attempts to tap my valuable wisdom.  Too often I have been driving when some suburban dolt wastes a whole cycle of the light asking me how to get someplace while I bite my tongue to refrain from yelling, "I don't live in this stupid fucking town!"

So that's it, drivers.  You've got your bluetooth, you've got your phones, you've got your Google Maps.  You've got more navigational power than they did on the Moon landing.

You're on your own, suckers.


wishiwasmerckx said...


wle said...


now i got nothing to say
except for that


Spokey said...

podi again

Anonymous said...

they should have modeled their new wheels after penquins.

Serial Retrogrouch said...

finger bang!

Spokey said...

thank lob all answers end with buy a B17 as i checked all three.

but snobbie, must it be a B17? Can I keep with the C17 I've grown to like?

Schisthead said...

I am sorry yes I am,
I do not talk to strangers ma'am.
You're part of this dire plot,
Please don't tell me that you're not!
I am sorry yes I am,
I do not talk to strangers ma'am...

Anonymous said...

As a former B-17 owner I LOL'd.

Spokey said...

CX-Ray spokes and Secure Lock nipples for unmatched performance and reliability that is made to last.

wow and you used to have to buy those glasses in the back of the comic books to see those nipples.

Samuel said...

In with the pack.

Tamaranchorider said...

You got my vote!

Spokey said...

no way do i stop going uphill to give directions. i will point to the top and huff & puff out, "i'll stop at the top to talk". i'm a bit more gracious if going down hill.

Freddy Murcks said...

Like many Americans, I'm still thinking about the erection.

Anonymous said...

Shimano hubs, 32 DT spokes in a 3 cross pattern on box rims. Perfection that doesn't need trademarked names.

82medici said...

Get your wheels quick,because the new tariffs that are going to be imposed on Portuguese hubs and Belgian nipples will make these wheels even more expensive,unless Pence's Indiana gets a special import deal.

N/A said...

When asked for directions, always tell 'em to take 4 lefts.

Anonymous said...

You know the hits are just going to keep on coming when you start with a name like SRAM.

Joe said...

When I was a younger, more naive fred (at least according to the theory of fred relativity), I bought one of those Fizik saddles using that spine concept gimmickry (imagine a doofus at the LBS bent over in front of a mirror and intently looking at the box wondering "How close am to touching my toes..."). Afterwards my back was in searing pain after every ride. I sensibly said, "F--- this. Never again" after a week. Years later, a friend gave me their entirely different spine inspired fizik saddle after my old saddle broke and I was in a pinch. Turned out it was great. It's the most comfortable saddle I've ever ridden.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 2:31pm,

--OuttaTheBOX™ rims
--FreezingPoint™ spoke count technology
--FreeBallin™ cartridge-free hubs

Coming from Zipp next year.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

Unknown said...

I refrained from directing fossil fools for a number of years...missdirecting is oh so evil..but feels good making an indirect contribution to global warming and the frustration of seeing the world pass by through a sheet of glass with the slight uneasy feeling that you might have been given bad directions...

N/A said...

I like a good brass nipple, and I don't care if it's Belgian, French, or whatever.

BikeSnobNYC said...


I love Fizik saddles myself. I suspect the spine gimmick must have been invented to free bike shop employees from the time-consuming process of letting Freds sit on every goddamn saddle in the shop.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

Esteemed Commenter DaddoOne said...

excuse me, how do i get to All Hail The Black Market?

Anonymous said...

The biomimicry gravel bike wheel, designed from the profile of a broken collarbone of a Cat 3 CX racer.

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to visiting indianapolis and seeing sharks and humpback whales in their natural environment.

N/A said...

I'm glad that somebody is really digging into why whales and sharks are so damn fast on bikes.

Grump said...

Those Zippy $4000 wheels are the height of Fredipity. If you noticed, they come in clincher only, so few Cat 1-2, Pros will use them (or old guys who like to race on box rims with glued on tires)
I'm surprised that you haven't received any negative hate filled comments.....That's not the America that I know.

Bryan said...

You should step your game up Snob - while the "I don't know" is a perfectly legitimate answer, it teaches the motorist nothing. Pick out somewhere absurd - and send them there! The Museum of Sex comes to mind...what a great way to tell them to get fucked

BamaPhred said...

My Spirit Animal was water buffalo. Didn't see it in the catalog.

Pathetic Old Cyclist said...

It's nice to see 'Find Your Animal Guy" is wearing his helment in case he falls onto his head while bending over to touch his tosies. Any bike related activity, even toe touches, requires a helment.

Lieutenant Oblivious said...

Good thing Zipp isn't biomimicking our Narwhal with those wheels, that wouldn't sit well with me!

JB said...

No use of "asymmetric" in that crabon wheel copy? Huh.

Anonymous said...

I had to look up the "proprietary gimmicks" to make sure they were real... Mother of God.

Everbody said...

Gastrolith! I know a lot of people who are as useful as one.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

Looking to nature to solve complex problems is nothing new. Leonardo Fibonacci did it in the 12th century when he discovered the Fibonacci sequence and the Golden Mean

My spiritual scranus animal is the Recumbabe.

anon said...

Why is that the directionless never seem to pull over, much less into a gas station to buy a FREAKING MAP! Remember those? I have actually told a few to go to the nearest and waddle in to find one. Then blissfully ride away...

BikeSnobNYC said...


Had a driver ask me where the nearest gas station was once, which really made my head explode.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

leroy said...

But can you tell me, tell me, tell me how to get to Sesame Street?

Or more to the point, where was that picture of your ride taken?

Internal Combustion - And we're not talking about Babble said...

The Donald is going to make gas stations great again (including clean rest rooms and attendants who clean your windshield and ask if you need your oil checked - that would be Chris Christie when he's on work release).

crosspalms said...

Something for Zipp to consider for next year's models: onions are round (just like wheels!) and parts of them are very slippery (just like whales and sharks!).

wishiwasmerckx said...

If there are any country music fans on here, when asked for directions I say:

"way up yonder past the caution light
There's a little country store with an old Coke sign
You gotta stop in and ask Miss Bell for some of her sweet tea
Then a left will take you to the interstate
But a right will bring you right back here to me."

hellbelly said...

I generally will be helpful, but if they are absolute yutzes I will send them in opposite direction of wherever I am going.

Drock said...

I knew a sailor on a sub, he talked about the skin wrapped in shark like material, someone leaked the navy secret. I'll hold out for shark skin frame wrap, and that's my idea if no one else is thinking about it. And will the dons orange hair go grey as those before him?

cyclejerk said...

Perhaps in four years, Gary Johnson will be POTUS, and we'll all enjoy Wednesday weed everyday. I can dream, right?

Dooth said...

Knock knock...Wildcat? Leroy asked you a question.

BikeSnobNYC said...


RE: picture,I figured you of all people would know!

--Wildcat Etc.

Anonymous said...

Know what would be bad-ass, is if they impeached Trump the day after his inauguration. Any Congresstrons have balls/ovaries enough for the challenge?

Anonymous said...

I say B17, Chump says B52...

End of world is neigh.


Kerry said...

Snob, So you won't help motorists with directions anymore... I get that.. But, will you still wave to Freds coming in the opposite direction? oh, wait.. scratch that.

Full Fredly Confession:

Dear Snob, I have and continue to sin. In the past I have bought very expensive crabon wheels.. Tubulars no less. These were fully branded and top shelf stuff but didn't start with a Z or channel animal spirits to gain speed. Recently I bought a pair of $300 dollar 50mm deep crabon clincher wheels from No-Name China ebay site.

I'm not joking when I say best wheels I've ever owned. Roll beautifully, are straight as they were on KM 1 and break very nicely. For 300 I thought why not, they will be good winter training wheels and, well, kinda look sexy.. But, so far I'm very very much impressed.

disclaimer (less then 750 KM on them so far)

shamed fred said...

Oh man.. can't believe I spelled "brake" as "break"..

Oh the shame of it all.. now need to change profile name to hide identity..

Kerry said...

Message to whiney hipster gentrification whores...

HTFU, please. Life just handed you an ass whoopin.. You have two choices the way I see's it:

1. Continue to wallow in your self pity and be a bunch of silly ass drama queens...


2. Grasp the outreached hand that all us "deplorable s" are offering you.. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get back in the ring.

We have a great chance now to affect real change in the USA (emphasis on "we"). Trump isn't the antidote, but more like the fingers down the throat to help us purge the stomach..

You wanna continue to be little bitches, go ahead.. But, the majority of people are going to move forward now and build a truly good society where good people will be able to live wonderful lives and bad people will not be welcome. You can be part of it or not.. . But, for your future happiness I very much hope you chose to be a part of it.

Switch off your social media brainwashing devices and go engage with real people.. Maybe venture out beyond your comfort zone and go meet a real live redneck.. Who knows, you may find more common ground with them then you expect.


Anonymous said...

Doesn't "NSW" indicate "not safe for work"? What is this, rim porn?

BikeSnobNYC said...

I kinda enjoyed the comment about the wheels, but the pro wrestling rhetoric is extremely off-putting.

Sax Huret said...

Campagnolo / Fulcrum has a technology they name CULT. It cracks me up every time I see it.

Kerry said...

Snob at 12:51

Well, that's the thing about us that will never quite sit right with you guys.. Our low-brow, monster truck luvin ways... Or at least that's the image you have seared into your collective imaginations of what the modern conservative is.

I say it and I mean it with all the best intentions and motives.. Stop being a bunch of whining pussies and become part of the solution now.. NY'er love to think of themselves as the Avant Guarde of civilized society in a gritty, NYC kind of way.. Well, now's the chance to show it.

I'm completely honest when I say that only "we" (plural) can get this turned in a direction that is beneficial to all. Yes, it sounds corny and, well... very corny.. But, It's America and it's worth fighting for and it's worth trusting the other side, as much as you detest the idea of getting dirty with the great unwashed.


Anonymous said...

"Know what would be bad-ass, is if they impeached Trump the day after his inauguration. Any Congresstrons have balls/ovaries enough for the challenge?"

There needs to be a crime committed by a person in office to have an impeachment. Crime committed before getting in office are handled by the normal justice system.

Passing a civics class used a requirement to graduate high school. We should bring this requirement back.

two degrees said...

Kerry,knock knock.majority? tally American presidential race 2016.HRC 60,467,245 votes 47.7%.DJT 60,071,650 votes 47.5%

BikeSnobNYC said...


Trust me, I'm not exactly clutching my pearls here, and I know you're being tongue-in-cheek, but it's worth noting that nobody seems hung up on redneck stereotypes but you. You also seem to have a pretty cartoonish picture of NY. I can also assure you that, say, the 88% of the Bronx that voted for Clinton does not walk around believing they are the "Avant Garde of civilized society"--nor would they respond well to being called "whining pussies" and "little bitches." (Does anybody, really?)

As for the post-election protest and anguish, you of anybody should know not to believe the "dishonest media" all the time. Sure, a certain class of people has the time to wave signs in front of Trump Tower, but I can assure you most people are getting on with life and hoping for the best just like you. And maybe some good will come from all this, but make no mistake, you've been duped. New Yorkers don't think they're better than you, they just grew up with this guy and know what he's about.

And yes, even I can see a bright side. For example, this will the the first President I can think of who gives virtually no lip service to make-believe characters like "God" and "Jesus." That's a form of progress.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

bad boy of the north said...

Happy Veteran's all of you who have served proudly.Thanks for your service.

Spokey said...

anon @6:29
not what i learned in civics class

Article II Section 4 -

The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.

that misdemeanors bit has always been a tad vague. also, as the poster advocated impeachment the day after inauguration, in theory trump could commit an impeachable offense in the first 24 hours.

bad boy heading south said...

oh,and that song is stuck in my lttle brain or what's left of it.

JLRB said...

Kerry - Let me clue you in a bit - starting off by saying "stop by being a bunch of whining pussies" isn't a way to reach across the aisle.

Having the Presidency, House and Senate in one party probably means nothing changing except tax laws for the rich getting better, climate change denial, a likely roll back of civil rights advances, and maybe one of your loved ones will get tossed by their health insurer due to a pre-existing condition. I am not in a hurry to lend an assist.

Spokey said...

hey fuck-o(e)s

you do realize that snobbie already posted a quiz and you're falling behind teddy boy.

Kerry said...

Hey JLRB..

And there it is, in your very first sentence.. The condescending drone that caused the left to be flushed from office....

Conservatism won... big big big time..... And, if lucky we will appoint 2-3 supreme court seats. Take the offer of being part of the rebuild or leave it.. Your choice. You should feel lucky that the right would be this generous.. It's far far more then what they were offered in the previous 8 years.. (I'm a very solid independent and leaned left for the past 8 years but couldn't stomach any more of the constant victimhood status claimed daily by the hyphenated groups..)

I see a bunch of young, immature and ignorant punks marching in the street.. whining because they think their safe spaces, which the nanny state provided them are all gone.. What they hell are they protesting? Democracy? So yeah, I will start off unapologetically by saying that they, and their "tone" is that of a bunch of whining pussies.

One of the mandates that came from this is a total rejection of the entitlement class.. which you seem to endorse.

I want all people to have an equal voice in this Govt.. Well.. actually, scratch that.. I don't really give a rats ass about the sniveling punks and upset snowflakes.

So, I will say for the last time.. Ya'll need to pick yourselves up, represent your ideas and views in an adult and logical way and you will be part of the solution.. Anything less then this will simply not be listened to anymore and you will find society and the country will have moved on.. way on...

Enjoy the ride..

leroy said...

Kerry - I have a hunch you haven't spent a lot of time in NYC. I've spent a fair amount of time there and in the Deep South.

Some Irish guy once suggested that it helps to wipe your glosses with what ye know.

He was right.

Of course, there was a time Irish folks and their books weren't welcome in the U.S. But that was wrong, right?

leroy said...

Kerry - my dog asked me if you remember the GOP reaction to Pres. Obama's election and reelection. He says it's kind of of odd you're talking about spurned offers of participation.

But he also says the high prices for watered drinks at Trump's election night party at the Hilton are a sign of the best you're going to get from a Trump administration.

As for me, I think my dog's being optimistic.

BikeSnobNYC said...


Where do you see these people? On the Internet or real life? You have been had by a NYC "billionaire." (Though I suspect his tax returns would say otherwise.) If I were into stereotyping like you are I'd say the big-city huckster took the small-town rubes, but it's not that simple.

Please leave now. Come back in 4 yrs and we'll do a post mortem.

--Wildcat Etc.

Anonymous said...

"biomimetic Gastrolith™ gizzard stone rim bed technology" may be the finest phrase you have ever penned!!

Kerry said...


I see my relatives, of which I have plenty living in NY (Brooklyn) all sucked into this vortex of self pity and false fear.. I see protests all across the USA by jilted juveniles that are throwing petulant fits because they didn't get what they thought was pre-ordained for their futures. I see an eliteist media cast shocked and with tears running down their cheeks because they are stunned that Joe pack didn't swallow their bullshit this time.

In closing I'm just so sad that it's actually you and so many that just don't get it.. Hopefully you will when the shock wears off.. It's really you that have been taken in.. Don't believe for a moment that I or many many of "us" like Trump.. Hell no.. He's simply terrible. But, as I typed out above, and thought I was pretty clear about it, Trump is the figurative fingers down the throat of Washington DC which will induce the reflex to clear the poisinous content there. I have no doubt that in 4 years he and his cartoon family will be set to the side of the road with the rest of the trash..

OK, I'll leave Snob, but I will sorely miss your brilliant and witty sarcastic commentary. I say that without sarcasm or irony. You have a great gift.

And in dramatic fashion, as I exit stage right, let me make one last plea.. Let's use this moment now, as Americans to flush the riff raff out of D.C. ( If you haven't noticed, both sides of the aisles have serious rats that are now scurrying for hiding places) I hate to use this phase because it will brand me unfairly once again as something I'm not, but it's true and accurate.. It's time to drain the swamp... (or at least detoxify it) and Trump is the sewer man chosen to do the job.

Lob Bless Merica.. Lob Bless Dick Brakes, crabon and kickstarter programs..... and Lob Bless the United Blog of Snobville..

Signing off from somewhere slightly right of center.

Anonymous said...

Was that Kerry or Ted K.?

Thought this blog was about cycling. Fuck off, dude.

Anonymous said...

It's a holiday and you wrote a post?! How many of your seventeen (17) children are near death because of this? Oh my God (well not cuz I'm an agnostic atheist).

Anonymous said...

Anon at 7:48

He did seem a bit uni-bombish...

But, in fairness it was a blog about cycling until Snob started injecting doom and gloom about the election into it.. I think the comment section is fair game for political statements if ones are made in the body of the blog (which they were).

Love in, peace out.

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