Monday, October 31, 2011

Saturday, October 29, 2011

It's a 2009 Throwback

Finding time to squeeze in bicycle rides is difficult with the annoying daily requirements from jobs and families and school and other things like indentured servitude. Everyone is busy. I completely understand that. So, since I couldn't fit onto the social agenda of Z-the-12-pound kid, (and I didn't really call anyone else) I headed out for a quick solo off-road mission this week. It was rainy, muddy, lots of wet leaves covered the trails, and I was riding an 80s touring bike with racks, fenders, and 32mm commuter tires. Perfect. Bad conditions beckon fewer outdoorsy folks out of doors so I encountered very few people; I stopped for water without holding anyone up, and to keep things interesting, I rode trails in in the opposite direction of the norm with little fear of a head-on collision. Keeping things fresh is what it's all about. I had a blast, put in some really fun mid-week miles, and only managed to nearly kill myself once. Like the metal maniac web logger Stevil said about a week ago, I too feel like I am a pretty good bicycle rider and a pretty crappy bicycle racer; however, to that I would like to add that I am a also phenomenal bicycle crasher. One certain thing about going all-out on a bicycle (let me be the first to admit that my "all out" is a lot of dudes' recovery pace) is that you are going to crash. And one good thing about crashing a lot over the years, is that I can now do it pretty dramatically and not really get too hurt. I knew I had no business heading toward that log-over with the speed I was carrying and because of it I am now completely willing to admit that I can bunny hop on my commuter even less well than I can on my mountain bike. If a guy on a bicycle falls in the woods, and no one is there to hear, does it still make a sound? Most certainly. Everyone has seen the video of the guy getting hit by an antelope; well, I was making the same sound. Anyway, no matter how crappy the weather is, it always makes sense to get outside and embarrass yourself.

Speaking of things that are hardly worth speaking of, I cannot not include a little recap of last week's big cycling news: the world famous Bike Snob linked Pittsburgh's own celebrity bicycle racer, Steevo three un-ironic times! For anyone interested, the Snobbish One referenced Steevo's now famous 2009 hipster cyclocross video for the second time; Steevo shot off this tweet:

For anyone who has attended a cyclocross race in the past two years and hasn't seen this video, do yourself a favor and take a mental trip in the Doctor Who telephone booth to a time before 100+ Cat 4 fields.

Just because there hasn't been much content to sink your teeth into this post so far, I think I'll go ahead and include the 2009 video I was inspired to make after seeing Steevo's handiwork.

Local Government Rules!
by: darkwing

Just some office drones interacting in local government.

So whether you are turning yourself inside out in a cross race this weekend, getting rad on a bike that is completely inappropriate for the riding conditions, overclocking in an office cube, or just hanging around in your underpants, please remember to hold your head up because someone, somewhere is ringing a 6ft. cowbell.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Bicycle Motocross is Not a Bunch of Rebrobates

OK, the bmx side of cycular riding has been really taking up a lot of time here at Rigid. Here in PA, but on the eastern side of the state, there is a set of bmx dirt jumps that is pretty famous. The Borough, the guys that maintain the trails, and the landowner (an airport), all came together to create a system that makes it legal, and just in case anyone gets hurt and has a lawyer for a dad, they now have insurance . Rad.

Catty Woods Labor Day Jam 2011 from Bryan Close on Vimeo.

There are lots of other things out there that are rad, but since we already started with bmx, then let's keep it rolling. Last year FBM released a full length documentary about their company, about bmx, about riding bikes and generally misbehaving. These guys started a company called Fat Bald Men because all the shop owners and company bigwigs they saw at the time fit that description. Be forewarned, there are bad words, there are images of law breaking. I can imagine that to many mainstream-type people, this video only confirms the prejudices about bmx riders being dirty, reckless, reprobates. But the underlying story is that FBM is an American manufacturing company, making their way in an industry in which nearly every company uses overseas manufacturing. They created a business that has grown every year and are now considered one of the veterans. FBM was one of the first rider-owned companies to prove that great products come from the minds of the people who are out there abusing the products daily. Rad.

I Love My Bicycle: The Story of FBM (Full Movie) from Joe Stakun on Vimeo.

Lastly, for those folks who might be in the Pittsburgh region, local trails advocacy group, PTAG, is hosting volunteer trail building days on both Saturday (North Park) and Sunday (Highland Park), so if you can lift a rake, then you can come out and help out.