Thursday, July 31, 2008

ah well

i'm injured right now. it's my shoulder, so carrying my messenger bag is gonna be an issue. typing is also kind of a problem, hence the no caps. anyway, i dont know if i can ride to work tomorrow, but since i've got an xtracycle and i don't have to carry anything on my back, i'm gonna find out. :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Your car sucks

According to Michael Zezima, your car sucks. I was going to write something semi-quantitative about cars compared to bikes in their impact on all of us, but then I found Mr Zezima's post, and he pretty much has it down. Cars suck. Cars kill people. Cars fuck up the planet. Cars enable us to live completely unsustainable livestyles, which in turn requires us to have an exceptionally excessive military presence in oil rich areas, killing more people.

Update: keep number 6 in mind when you turn the key. 121, is a LOT.

How lazy are you America? People die so you can sit on your ass for an hour a day to get to your office job where you sit on your ass for eight hours a day. Read that again! People die ! I'm a little emotional about this, because I recently read about a local cyclist getting hit by a car, apparently he's ok, but when some drunk dumbass in a two ton vehicle hits someone on a bike, the cyclist is in grave danger.

With all due respect Mr. Ford, regardless of the benefits of the automobile, I'm not convinced the price is worth the unimaginable cost.

Dorky vs Safer

A Bozeman cyclist was struck by a drunk driver on Monday night. Apparently the kid is alive as he was released from the hospital. But fractured vertebrae sounds kind of serious to me. Aggravated assault? Anyone know who we need to lobby to get that changed to attempted manslaughter? I'm not sure if I think ten years is enough, since he'll probably get off somehow, but we'll see.

I'm getting a helmet mirror. I've resisted it for a while based on the fact that I think they look kind of dorky. Maybe it won't keep me any safer, but I'd like that split-second warning anyway. Especially with assholes like Lamont Anderson driving around out there.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

What's the internet again?

Don't worry Mr Stevens. The bars on your jail cell are just a series of tubes. I've tried to keep my political fervor in check as much as possible on here. But for a dirty pol tied to big oil, which powers my favorite form of transportation to b$%ch about, I'll stretch the relevance a little.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The fixie goes political

Barak Obama is apparently the politician of choice with the hipsters. That may be the only thing that gives me pause...

Click on it few times.

Thursday, July 24, 2008


I did a great (if short) road ride tonight. We headed out on Manly, up Sypes to Summer cutoff, way north and then crossed Springhill, south through a subdivision to Airport east to...hmm there I can't remember where we turned. But you twist and turn down a pleasant country lane til eventually you end up on frontage and come back into the BZN on valley center.

Here's a better discription and it even has a map. Boy, somebody is sure on the ball.

Christmas in July...or something like that.

I'm starting to think I almost like commuting in winter better than summer. For one thing, it's cooler. But I also don't get to work feeling like a portable steam room in the winter time, even though I do sweat quite a bit regardless of how cold it is.

In other news I've reached what I think is a milestone. Today, I've worn the ass out of a third pair of pants, or is it fourth...


Polo was good last night. We finally got back some of that good old fashioned competitive spirit. Some new people showed up, and DNA didn't put a leg through a spoke shearing of a disgusting nugget of skin. Those who weren't in attendance missed and were missed, expect a healthy amount of shit talking. I definitely need to get real polo bike together though. My cruiser isn't exactly a 'beat em off the line' kind of machine. And that back wheel...hmm...

Monday, July 21, 2008

Just peadal already. It's better. I promise.

DNA is a lot of things. He's a dependable friend, a brother in arms, and a partner in crime. But, most importantly he is what the Samurai referred to as a worth adversary. I don't care what anyone tells you every ride is a race and you either throw down or you don't. Now, when we ride we aren't exactly competing, but neither one of us is holding back, if you know what I mean. It's an unspoken rule, except I've learned that when he say's 'C-Note, I'm gonna hold back a little' it's time to put on the big girl panties and bring my fucking A-game, cuz the shit's gonna hit the fan. And I'm not just talking about Dawn Patrol mt. bike rides, after work rides or early season road rides to burn some fat off. No, I'm talking about the impromptu hammer fest through the streets of Bozeman at midnight when we've both had a smidge to much to drink. Sometimes one of us is on an Xtracycle, or a fixed gear, or a touring road bike with a BoB trailer on the back. It's keep up er shut up, and frankly I wouldn't have it any other way. Cycling is, by it's very nature, a competitive thing and sometimes you gotta run whatcha brung.

Tonight we showed 317 some love, after all, they've been good to us, and post 'give me a whiskey/whatever (make it a double) we headed through the unlit streets in a drunken aplomb...FAST. We both took advantages where they presented themselves, but the fact remains that I had fun that I wouldn't have had if I'd driven to the bar. Nevermind the fact that driving while drunk is lame and stupid and illegal, and riding a bike intoxicated is perfectly legal if slightly stupid and begging for trouble.

Anyway, the point is that since we were both riding bikes we got to push our physical limits, and have a great deal of fun doing something we love, and that had we driven to the bar, we would have been idiots putting others' lives in danger, with no respect or regard for our fellow person, and most importantly I wouldn't have had an opportunity to flat out hammer, and my life is better for having had that hill to climb. It feels good to make your heart race and your lungs heave. Some of us ( actually most of us, just that some seem to have forgotten) take pride in a resting heart rate below 50 bpm, and you don't have to train for a marathon, you just have to put the power to the pedal.

Ride your bike. I promise it's better than whatever else is in your garage. (Better doesn't equate with 'easy')

...of course some coporate actions are necessary

It's always nice to be part of something Grass-Roots. But the fact of the matter is that making sweeping changes in the way this country moves its collective fat ass from place to place is simply going to take money and clever ad agencies. I'm just being pragmatic here. It's nice to see that the large bicycle manufacturers recognize that practical cycling isn't just a niche market. The Kona Ute is a perfect example of this. Even though Surly ultimately made the Big Dummy much better than the Ute (in my opinion) Kona still beat them to the punch, and the Ute is much cheaper. I'm not really surprised by this of course, if you watch the news for five minutes all you see is schemes to avoid paying 4 dollars for a gallon of gas. Anyway, this is Trek president John Burke discussing the writing on the wall, so to speak.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

What is it?

I see things and hear things like this from time to time and aside from deeply disturbing me, it completely baffles me. How is it that someone in a car feels so threatened by a cyclist that they can become enraged? Is it that you have the perception that cyclists are somehow slowing you down?

One night on my way home I actually had a guy in a 'pimped out' import pull up next to me and start revving all four cylinders. Really?!? Posturing to a guy on a bike? With your car? Maybe it's the fact that with hundreds of horsepower you're still slower than me, and I doubt you're having a good time in that rolling metal box. Or, maybe it's the fact that drivers are vastly in the minority and all that insecurity from being too weak to pull your own weight is just too much for you. I keep vacillating concerning gas prices, but assholes who think there's a good reason to try to kill someone with their stupidly unnecessary car make me wish gas was twenty dollars-a-gallon.

I hope this guy goes to jail for this. If you're weak enough to drive a car every day, at least take some responsibility for your slovenliness.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Beer and Buses?

My latest post on The Fix

Bozeman has this thing called Music on Main, and it's basically evolved into an excuse to drink while walking through the middle of main street. In order to keep everything all benignly American, local bars hand out bright pink wrist bands after people show an ID at the door, and then serve drinks in an 'inconspicuous' plastic cup so people don't have to be alarmed by seeing a bunch of twenty somethings walking around with 'gasp' alcohol. It's amazing how four years of high school so completely dictate everything about how people behave in every single facet of their lives.

Sorry I does this pertain to bikes? These wristbands have emblazoned on them an admonishment against Montana's second favorite pass-time.

(For those of you not savvy enough with the internets to click on the above picture, it says "DUI, you can't afford it. Be Smart. Ride the Bus" (Not-so-cleverly edited by yours truely)

Me being me, I felt the need to alter it a bit to turn it from a rather preposterous suggestion to a far more practical alternative to something powered by fossil fuels. Seriously, what would you rather do; sit on an odd smelling bus full of strangers (that you waited twenty minutes for), or have a pleasant midsummer evening ride on the most efficient form of transportation yet devised by man?

It reminds me of King Solomon who said 'there is nothing new under the sun'. I've remarked many times to sEtOH, Captain E, DNA, and the Coyote that over the last eight weeks, more and more people have been riding bikes around Bozeman. Every day on my ride into work I see another middle-aged guy wearing a Bell helmet with a neon yellow nylon cover riding an old school touring bike down one of Bozeman's main drags.

What does this all mean? I have no idea. But clearly you are smarter than American Big-Business. Cuz some generic ad company is pushing riding a bus, and true blue patriots are naturally falling into the most spontaneous solution to the sloth of fossil fuel that there is. (OK, Miller isn't really the 'true blue patriot' I'm just as much of a slave to a clever ad campaign as the next idiot. But hey, they play to a certain crowd.)

Whatever. Share the stoke with the other riders you see. They get what so many others continue to refuse. They get what you've probably embraced for far longer than it was fashionable. But hey! They get it! And even if they don't get it, you should help and encourage them until they get it. Cuz the future looks bleak for American obesity and increased habitual cycling has all kinds of benefits. And, even if it weren't for any of those things I know for certain that there is something about riding a bike, and if we get everyone to get that then everything else will be ok.

Be safe out there! Make sure your family knows you care, and tell your friends that they kick ass!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

People both suck and are awesome

This is cross posted from The Fix

The first part of this post is me being pissed and the last part is me being stoked, so if you'd rather read the good stuff, skip to the end.

I got the following email from youtube tonight.

Dear Member:

This is to notify you that we have removed or disabled access to the following material as a result of a third-party notification by The Collective Films claiming that this material is infringing:

RockySprints - Seasons Premier:

Please Note: Repeat incidents of copyright infringement will result in the deletion of your account and all videos uploaded to that account. In order to prevent this from happening, please delete any videos to which you do not own the rights, and refrain from uploading additional videos that infringe on the copyrights of others. For more information about YouTube's copyright policy, please read the Copyright Tips guide.

If you elect to send us a counter notice, please go to our Help Center to access the instructions.
Be aware that there may be adverse legal consequences in your country if you make a false or bad faith allegation of copyright infringement by using this process.

YouTube, Inc.

Apparently The Collective thinks that me posting video of ya'll racing RockySprints somehow falls under the jurisprudence of their copyright. I was so irritated about it that I sent them an extremely inappropriately crabby email about it (sue me, it pisses me off when people suck at life).

Here's another example of me 'infringing' on the holy copyright of The Collective (who at this point, can officially kiss my ass). Watch it quick, The Collective's lawyers are probably huddled around computers as you read this waiting to pounce. For anyone from 'The Collective' (what are you, The Borg?) who reads this, it's all in good fun...oh, and get over yourselves, it's not like you're Metallica, actually since there isn't a shred of your intellectual property in anything I posted, you're worse than Metallica. Congratulations, that's hard-core douchebagdom.

I'm sure it's all a 'misunderstanding' just because I mention in the info that it's at the Seasons premier. But c'mon, what do you pay those lawyers all that money for?

On a happy note The Kitchen was flat out humming tonight. That place is really starting to develop a good vibe. Every week there are new people showing up with this look on their faces that I can't describe, but you can tell that they are stoked to get a bike running. It's a really addictive environment, and I walk out of there every night tired and happy. DNA dropped by and got a 24-inch-wheeled Giant running for a little girl whose parents couldn't really afford to buy her a bike, or get her to soccer practice, since gas is about 30 dollars a gallon now. That's what we get out of The Kitchen, we get to hand somebody something that will make their lives better. If you have the time, money, or spare parts, I promise there are worse places or ways to disseminate them than getting more bicycles on the road for people to get around.

So, I guess I got to see the good and the bad today. I s'pose they call that life and it's up to me to chose to take the good and leave the bad.

Ride safe out there!

C Note


I got an email reply from the collective. It went like this:

Relax dude. Your video was accidentally caught up in a bigger attempt to get
pieces of our complete film off of youtube so we don't have our material
ripped off. Sorry. You can put it back up if you want and I'll do my best to
make sure it doesn't happen again.

Take it easy.

Jamie - The Collective

I now of course must apologize for equating them with star trek villains and greedy rock stars...and the douche-bag comment may have been a quarter step too far...

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Be safe out there...

Update: The young man Suz and I came across passed away due to head trauma. If you're inclined, send up a prayer for his family. I can't imagine what they're going through right now.

I had one of the most sobering moments of my entire cycling career today. Suzanne and I rode the Bangtail Divide, it's twenty-five miles of epic singletrack, ending with five miles of down-hill on Grassy Mountain. A mile from the end of the trail I came upon something I hoped I'd never see, and that I pray to God I never see again. At the top of a switchback there were two paramedics and eight guys standing around an eighteen-year-old kid. They had him hooked up to a pump to help him breathe because he had punctured a lung, and they were stabilizing his head because he had broken his neck. As near as Suzanne could figure from listening to the kid's friends, he had launched off of a roller about fifteen feet from the switchback, but cased the landing and landed on his head on the next section of trail below the switchback, which means he fell about eight feet straight down. I later saw his buddy pull his bike from the bushes about ten to fifteen feet off of the lower trail. One of the first guys on the scene told us that when he showed up the kid wasn't breathing and that his friends started performing CPR, while the kid coughed up the blood that was in his lungs.

We do this because we love it, it gives our lives meaning, brings us a greater spiritual center, there are many reasons; and the fact that there is a huge potential for injury is part of what makes all of those positive things so much more intense. But none of that matters when you're watching a kid struggling to breathe because of the fluid filling his lungs, and praying he doesn't die before they get him to the hospital.

I'm certainly not going to quit riding (I've got a dawn patrol scheduled with Mr. DNA in the morning) and I'm also going to continue to get everything out of cycling that it has to offer. But I'll never forget my harrowing view of the dark side of this sport.

So be safe out there. You always want to make it to the next ride.