Thursday, November 30, 2006
Decorah is 150 miles south of Minneapolis; 300 miles west of Chicago; 150 miles west of Madison; and 150 miles from Davenport.
Learn more at twentynineinches.com.
Betsy Andreu, wife of former Armstrong teammate Frankie Andreu, alleges she overheard Lance Armstrong say that he uses performance enhancing drugs. The computer hacking is part of a concerted effort by Armstrong to conceal evidence of his malfeasance.
Armstrong's reaction: "Oh boy... Just when I thought I had heard it all. What's next? Saddam Hussein's WMD's are out at my ranch in Texas?"
Via Podium Cafe.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Rumor mill: Bianchi heist was hoax; Bianchi brand for saleDo you remember the one-of-kind Bianchi Armani Haute Couture bicycle that was reportedly stolen in 2005? Freewheel believes this "theft" might have been a publicity stunt. He writes
A high-end store such as Emporio Armani has stringent security measures in place. A thief is unlikely to get away with stealing a tie, let alone a bike. In addition, there are countless security cameras in operation at Caesars Palace. There’s no way someone could walk out of there with a bike and not be caught on film. So, where’s the picture of the thief/thieves?Read also Freewheel's followup.
I hereby declare that the Great Armani Bike Burglary is a hoax.
A publicity stunt.
Armani wants you to believe that the Emporio Armani Sportbike is really, really valuable. That the bike is sought after by discriminating thieves.
In reality, the Emporio Armani Sportbike is an overpriced hybrid.
While I'm passing along unsubstantiated rumors about Bianchi, I might as well mention that financially-troubled Cycleurope may consider selling the Bianchi brand. Via Dirt pedaler, which saw it at The BOSS Report.
I don't know how many in my audience regularly ride public transportation, but envision this scenario: You have an annoying dry cough -- you're not really sick enough to stay home from work, your throat is just scratchy and dry. You're riding the bus, train, or trolley to work and you can't control your coughing spams. The passenger sitting next to you kindly offers a throat lozenge.
My question: Do you get offended?
I sat next to the coughing passenger on the bus this morning. Should I carry cough drops with me on the bus and offer them to my seat-mates if they're coughing? Would that be rude?
Please comment and let me know what you think. I might even do the cougher a favor by preventing his ejection from the bus.
The public hearing on this new rule was yesterday. The NY Times reports on the rally held by cyclists in front of the Police Department, noting that City Council member Christine Quinn who most supports the new measures didn't bother to show up at the hearing. And the Village Voice asks the important question: Why are the police writing the rules they'll enforce?
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Portland may not be completely out of the running, however: Eurobike organizers will be at Sea Otter to meet with industry leaders about a second show, saying they are only "postponing" their plans for a big U.S. show.
It looks to me like Messe Friedrichshafen and Klaus Wellmann tested the waters, saw the underwhelming response, and are now deciding to do some good old-fashioned networking and flesh-pressing. I don't believe they've given up on the idea of a second U.S. bicycle trade show just yet.
More about Eurobike at the Sea Otter Classic:
Monday, November 27, 2006
Grant Petersen interview at Push Button For. Also at Chico Gino.
Cyclists differ from other workers not only because of their small numbers, but also because they are much more likely to enjoy commuting to work.According to this report, 59% of cyclists enjoy their commute, compared to 37% of those who drive a car to work. Furthermore, 19% of cycling commuters report that commuting is their favorite activity of the day, compared to only 2% of drivers.
Via Warren T, who got it from Treadly and Me, who saws this at Philadelphia Bicycle News.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
The conventional wisdom many bicycle advocacy websites tell us that bicycling is a dangerous activity, while the truth is that the risk of serious injury or death while cycling is somewhere between driving and walking.
This TIME cover story on perceived versus real risk discusses our reaction to real and perceived dangers, and the strange, unreasonable reactions we often have to small risks.
Please don't misundertand me: there are certainly risks in cycling and any other activity, and there are choices we make while cycling to increase or decrease the risk of a collision. Some of the choices might be reasonable because they provide great benefit at little cost; some choices are less reasonable; and then there's the huge middle ground of trade-offs and compromises. It's this big middle ground that experience and effective cycling education help tremendously to provide the tools cyclists need to make the best decisions.
- Get out and ride.
- Ninny bait.
- Psychology of sidewalk cycling.
- No babies on bikes.
- The dangers of automobiles.
Thursday, November 23, 2006
I'm on the road this weekend and I'm posting this from a dial-up AOL account so my followups are much slower than usual. I'm thankful for all of you who visit Cyclelicious! Have a wonderful weekend.
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Because the NJS promotes the Japanese bicycle industry, non-Japanese manufacturers have found participation in the lucrative Keirin market very difficult. The list of approved component and frame suppliers consists almost exclusively of Japanese companies.
While the NJS cachet is not necessararily a mark of quality, there's a certain distinction to owning this equipment because the NJS mark is so exclusive. It's a bit like owning a numbered limited production run of a piece of art.
Monday, November 20, 2006
A group of scientists at Indiana University discovered that one of the most effective drinks to help athletes recover after exercise is chocolate milk!
The chocolate milk research, published in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, was supported in part by the Indiana Dairy and Nutrition Council.
Nine fit athletes were asked to work out strenuously on a stationery bicycle, then drink low-fat chocolate milk, a fluid-replacement drink such as Gatorade and a carbohydrate replacement drink such as Endurox R4. A few hours later, they were asked to cycle again until they reached exhaustion.
The test was performed once with each kind of drink, and the data showed that the cyclists were able to go between 49 and 54 percent longer on the second stint after drinking chocolate milk than when they drank the carbohydrate drink.
"My way of explaining it is, there's really nothing magic about the powder in a can that you mix with water," cycling coach Scott Saifer said of the carbohydrate drink. "It's water, carbs, proteins, maybe minerals and electrolytes. What's in chocolate milk? The same thing. There's no reason it shouldn't be as good for recovery as a carb drink."
Gene posts the recipe for his "best ever bike ride recovery drink" at Biking Bis. He also points to Tim Grahl's experiment with a slightly unappetizing concoction involving tea, salt, and lemon juice.
Me, I'll stick to the powders that come in a can.
Read more about this breakthrough sports drink here.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
They got me in the quality department, but they can't touch the quantity I'm posting here. Those are literally thousands of Sock Guy socks that people are greedily pawing through. Sock Guy was selling these for $20 for eight pairs at Veloswap 2006 in San Francisco earlier today. What a bargain!
Photo info: Sock Guy smackdown by richardmasoner.
Friday, November 17, 2006
You know that rush of adrenaline you get when you narrowly miss being hit or hitting something? All those little annoyances when you see others doing things like running red lights and tailgating?Reproduced here with Yolanda's kind permission.
On your bicycle you use physical exercise to burn off that adrenaline as soon as it's produced, just like nature intended. In the car, however, it stays in your system. Every subsequent burst increases your levels. Adrenaline left unchecked results in either rage or panic and of course rage is the choice for power. We respect a controlled rage but not anxiety and fear. So they rage, gradually, they rage more and more. At some point they forget the base point, the point of reference and don't realize they're not being assertive, they're being asses.
Worse yet, most folks are oblivious of how much chemistry directs them. They don't believe or accept that their moods aren't justified simply because they're feeling that mood. It's like "well if I feel this way, it's natural because I wouldn't feel this way if I didn't have a good reason." Never willing to accept that they could be in the grip of a passion with zero basis beyond buildup of hormones like adrenaline.
I'm glad to see this news. I attended college in Wichita Falls, TX, using my bicycle to go everywhere in this small north Texas city. After I moved off-campus, I rode my bike to classes during the day, to and from my night job downtown, and -- during the summer -- five miles to my second job at a steakhouse at the north end of Wichita Falls. I did this year-round, rain, snow, shine, heat, cold, day or darkness.
Related: Wichita Falls Bicycle Blog.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Photo info: Foreign busy body bicycling in Beijing by richardmasoner.
- Winter cycling.
- Cycling rain gear.
- Slower cycling in winter.
- Winter cycling preparation.
- Winter riding gear.
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
A furriner apparently tried to take the lane while turning across an intersection in Beijing. The cab driver behind her becomes "infuriated, gets out of the taxicab, grabs the lady's bicycle and throws it to the ground twice."
Photos posted on Chinese blogs of the incident created "controversy and sparking an outpouring of respect to the foreigner and the denouncement of the driver." Read more about this Xinhua / Chinaview.
Does anyone know where to find these photos? Blogger Mo Jie reported the incident at sohu.com, but I don't read Chinese and don't know how to find the Chinese blog post.
Oh, there's a faint possibility of me visiting Beijing in the next month or two. Can one rent a bike in Beijing? Or would it be cheaper/easier just to buy a Flying Pigeon for the short time I'll be there?
Book review for AWOL : The Unexcused Absence Of America's Upper Classes From Military Service -- And How It Hurts Our Country.
If you want bicycling content, visit Montague's "military bicycles for advanced mobility" with information on the folding Paratrooper Tactical Mountain Bike.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
You're riding down 18th street on a cool fall afternoon. You notice all the women aged 21-35 are standing along the sidewalk, all staring at you. As you stop for a red light, one approaches:
HER: Pardon me, is that a Campagnolo bottom bracket?
YOU: Why yes... it is.
HER: [blushes] Wow, you must be a man of true discernment... tell me big boy, how big IS it?
HER: [stammers, begins to twitch] E-english threaded?
YOU: ENGLISH threaded...
HER: [tearing off clothes] YOU TOTAL HUNK OF A MAN, TAKE ME NOW!!!!
YOU: [under your breath] Thanks, craigslist!!
Seriously dudes, it could happen to you. This thing is BRAND-FREAKING-NEW! Reduced price!
Hat tip to Paul and his Bike Commute Tips blog.
L'Equipe, predictably, claims that the hackers were working on behalf of Floyd Landis.
And the beat goes on.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Cycling newsWhat can cycling learn from other sports? NASCAR driver and cyclist Randy Ruhlman talks about how the right promotion can help popularize cycling.
University of Victoria students recycle bicycles to encourage more students to bike to class.
4th Annual San Francisco VeloSwap is this weekend, November 18, 2006 at San Francisco Concourse Exhibition at 7th & Brennan.
New York City gets sharrows, the "shared lane" now used in Denver, Boulder, Portland, and San Francisco.
The New Yorker published Holy Rollers: The city's bicycle zealots.
Dave Moulton's bike blog is a year old. Dave Moulton is a one-time frame builder who still has lots of good bicycle advice online. Dave has some good stuff; drop by when you have a chance.
Steve Andrews helped co-found ASPO-USA in June, 2005 and volunteers through the ASPO-USA Board of Directors. During past work as an energy consultant, he worked with builders, cities, utilities, planners, public television, the University of Colorado, and a host of other clients.
Saturday, November 11, 2006
British director Ridley Scott created the low-budget "Boy & Bicycle" in 1965, featuring his younger brother Tony Scott riding a bicycle around town. Ridley Scott went on to direct Alien in 1979 and Blade Runner in 1982, neither of which had any bicycles. His film A Good Year opened today.
The bike-riding younger brother Tony Scott directed Top Gun in 1986; his Enemy of the State in 1998 had one of the good guys getting away from the bad guys on a bicycle when he gets creamed by a firetruck. Tony Scott's Déjà vu opens later this year.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Calling all fanboys and fangirls! The 2007 Amgen Tour of California needs volunteers to help run the race. There's a lot of grunt work involved, but some of these -- like "Medical Control" -- look like a lot of fun!
Course Marshals – Assigned adesignated area along the race course to assist with the coordinationand safety of the field of play for all race venues; keep the courseclear of pedestrians, spectators, cars, etc; PR Ambassador: keepspectators informed.
Hospitality– Assist with set up/tear down of hospitality/expo areas and check-inat venues in start or finish cities: IMPORTANT that individual isfamiliar with host city and local government officials, VIP’s, etc.
- StartCities: Assist with LOC Hospitality Tent decoration (flowers, tableskirts, etc), Work check-in (credentials); meet and greet localguests/VIP’s.
- Finish Cities: Assist with LOC HospitalityTent decoration (flowers, table skirts, etc), Assist Tour HospitalityCoordinator work check-in (credentials); meet and greet localguests/VIP’s.
- Start Cities: Assist with distribution of media credentials at Media Check-in.
- FinishCities: Assist Tour Media Operations staff in the Media Office: Assist with Credential distribution, Serve as “runners”, assist withgeneral Q&A and office set-up.
Medical Control - Athlete escorts to and from Medical Tent for post-race testing.
Security –Assist Tour Security Staff with access-control, including on-course,hospitality, awards, green room and press conference. Will be providedspecial Security T-shirt.
Site Decoration/Restoration – Assist Logistics Crew with hanging and tear-down of banners: on-course, hospitality, etc. Broken into Two Shifts (Morning Set-up and Load-in:2 hrs.; Afternoon Breakdown 2 hrs.).
Lifestyle Festival EXPO–Assist Tour Lifestyle Festival Staff with Expo coordination: guidevendors and Exhibitors to their tents for set-up; assist with Festivallogistics as needed; assist with Marketing activities in EXPO. Brokeninto Two Shifts (Morning Set-up and Load-in:2 hrs.; AfternoonRunners/Activities and Breakdown 2 hrs.).
Sweepstakes/Economic Impact Surveyors - Responsible for ensuring each person attending the Festival is aware of our Sweepstakes and has had a chance to enter. This position assists the onsite Survey/Sweepstakes Coordinator both pre and post-Festival.
Volunteer Check-in – Assist Volunteer Coordinator with set-up, check-in/registration and deployment.
Thursday, November 09, 2006
Tom aka The Amazing Shrinking Man is amazing in many ways. He's an enthusiastic cyclist and a very positive man who has dedicated himself to encouraging, supporting and helping other morbidly obese people in their battle to lose weight and gain esteem.
Here's Warren's bike haiku about riding at night. Here's a bike haiku about a tragic loss.
Remember, a haiku is a poem with three verses with five syllables in the first verse, seven in the second, five in the last for a total of 17 syllables. Some experts think 12 syllables work better in English, and that's okay by me.
I prefer the traditional style of Haiku where the poem contains a "kigo" and is evocative of the season, e.g. "Brittle leaves crunch underneath."
Bicycling and haiku seem to go together so naturally. Haiku often contains a juxtaposition, placing apparently unrelated or unequal things side by side, and as bicyclists we experience so much of that just in a short ride. Most obviously, we're the little scrawny guy or gal sitting unprotected on a 20 pound bike right next to the behemoth cage enveloping its occupant with four tons of steel, climate control, and entertainment. Not as apparent might be the little connections we see; I'm the highly paid computer engineer who rides through "the Projects" every day and says hello to surly teenagers hanging out at on the street and to their slightly older sisters pushing their infants in stollers to the corner store and to the middle age gang victim sitting in his donated wheelchair at the bus stop.
Bicyclists are connected to others in ways that most people are not, and these connections can make for some great haiku.
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Sheldon Brown is an fountain of bike knowledge, and he's freely shared his knowledge online since 1994 when he signed up for AOL and joined some bike-enthusiast email lists. He put up his outstanding website in December 1994. He's kind of a hero of mine, and he's the reason I usually spell the gear-changing mechanism "derailer."
Sheldon Brown journals the progression of his disease at this journal page.
Via Bike Design and Bike Friday Walter. I join James and Walter in suggesting participation in the MS Bike Tour to raise funds to find a cure for Multiple Sclerosis. When the 2007 schedule is available, I'll post it to Cyclelicious.
Monday, November 06, 2006
First, to get you in the mood, a little Bike Haiku.
Now for the news: Study examines benefits of visibility for pedestrian and cyclist safety... or, paradoxicaly, the lack of any benefit at all.
Cycling doping trial starts in France. David Miller's reward for coming clean with his doping.
Speaking of doping, here's a slick video from the WADA. Via Spinopsys.
Translink -- the SF Bay Area single payment transit card -- is now available in a pilot program for users of AC Transit, Golden Gate Transit and Ferry, and the Dumbarton Express. The TransLink card allows commuters to swipe the card against a card reader, and the card reader automatically deducts the correct fare and applies any appropriate discounts, including transfers.
BART, Muni and Caltrain are scheduled to join TransLink in 2007. SamTrans and Santa Clara VTA are scheduled to come on board in 2008. TransLink will expand to serve the several remaining Bay Area transit agencies through 2010.
Read more at the New York Times. (Registration required).
Sunday, November 05, 2006
Remember remember the 5th of November,
The Gunpowder, Treason and Plot,
I know of no reason why the gunpowder treason
should ever be forgot.
Guy Fawkes, Guy Fawkes, 'twas his intent
to blow up the King and the Parliament.
Three score barrels of powder below,
Poor old England to overthrow:
By God's providence he was catch'd
With a dark lantern and burning match.
Holloa boys, holloa boys, make the bells ring.
Holloa boys, holloa boys, God save the King!
Hip hip hoorah!
Photo info: Gun Powder Plot by scottwills.
Friday, November 03, 2006
Davis Phinney (right) with Race Announcer Dave Towle at the VeloNews Davis Phinney Fundraiser in June 2005.
What first introduced you to the world of cycling?
My introduction to bike racing was seeing the first Red Zinger Classic (later to become the Coors Classic) in my hometown of
Can you remember your first bike?
The first racing bike that I actually owned was a used italian Masi (10 speed of course), that I bought from a friend for $350 in 1976. I ended up using that bike off and on for the next 5 years.
Who were your idols growing up that you aspired to be?
My idol was a Belgian legend named Freddy Maertens. Freddy was an incredible sprinter, who once won 56 pro races in a season! For a time he was virtually unbeatable.
Can you remember your first win as a cyclist?
My first win was in a Jr/Sr Cat. 3 criterium around
What has been your best memory as a professional cyclist?
That is nearly an impossible question to answer. I have so many wonderful memories... Being part of the first N. American team to ride in the Tour (and winning a stage) in '86. Riding with Andy Hampsten when he won the Giro in '88. Winning stages at the Coors through all those years (22 stage wins in all), as well as claiming the overall GC title in '88. Winning the
What was your favorite team to ride for? Did you have a favorite teammate?
Riding for the 7-Eleven cycling team was an unbelievably good experience. I had many great teammates but if I were forced to pick, then it would have to be Ron Kiefel.
Do you have a favorite race in
The biggest and best race in
Do you have a favorite race in the
Nothing in the
How do you feel the current state of professional cycling is (drug accusations, the ProTour)?
This is a low-point in the history of the sport, there is no doubt. The roots to doping in cycling run deep however. The origin of the sport was never one of athletic purity. In the beginning (at the turn of the century), cycling was simply a test of what man and machine were capable of, and however the rider coaxed themselves to the finish line was their business. Unfortunately that ethos has stuck with European cycling throughout the generations since, it has become endemic within certain circles (not all but some). And the most recent scandals have shed light on how extreme doping practice has become -- and what riders are willing to risk to achieve results. One can only hope that these revelations will truly force the sport (UCI, ProTour, teams, and riders) to own up and appreciate that they are destroying cycling by continuing down this road.
Do you think youth cycling has grown over the past few years?
I don't really know. When I was a junior there seemed to be more riders at the national level than now. But thanks to the exposure that Lance has given road cycling, the number of juniors is on the rise.
How has fundraising been going for the DPF? Any big events planned over the next few months that our readers should know about?
The DPF is building at a managible pace. We have lot's of little events that are on our plate for '07. Big ones are a spinning fundraiser in NYC in February, the Copper Triangle in
You're the winningest cyclist in American history, do you think your record will ever be beat?
How did it feel to be inducted into the
A nice honor.
You are based out of
Lance Armstrong will participate in this Sunday's New York City Marathon. The Lance-o-philes can watch Armstrong run on the MediaZone "Lance Cam." it's $4.95 to watch it online, though the first half-hour is free with registration.
Thursday, November 02, 2006
My dad used to be in the Crisis Management industry before he retired. Crisis Management is the practice of staying cool, calm and collected when the stuff hits the fan.
The secret to Crisis Management is to have a plan before the Bad Thing happens. What do you do when your company gets on CNN for all the wrong reasons? Having a plan on how you respond to the media beforehand has a major impact on how the public perceives your company. The Bad Things still happened, but how you handle the disaster and its aftermath is important.
Now on the scale of crises, a competing show hardly compares with a plane wreck or chemical factory explosion, but I'm sure this trade show news has the marketing wonks working overtime at VNU Expositions.
When Eurobike promoter Messe Friedrichshafen announced a new bicycle show to compete with Interbike, Interbike's reaction made me wonder if they had a contigency plan in place. They've put a positive spin on this news and leveraged Eurobike's coverage to get more media coverage on Interbike itself. There's possibly more news about Interbike in traditional media and the blogosphere now than during the actual trade show itself.
Don't miss Masiguy's latest thoughts about "Port-o-Bike" over at Drink the Kool Aid.
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
I noticed my derailleur hanger was bent in toward the wheel. That's probably what caused my poor shifting performance earlier, and it's probably what sent my derailleur into the wheel. Urgh.
I used my handy dandy chain tool to rig my chain for single-speed use, wrapping it around the granny gear inside chainring and one of the inside cogs to get some reasonable alignment. Because this is a newer bike with vertical dropouts, there's no way to adjust the chain tension. Hence, the chain sagged. A lot.
This instant singlespeed got me about a mile down the road when the loose chain skipped to the next larger cog. Pedaling became very stiff for about one revolution, then *snap* the over tight chain tension sheered all the chainring bolts clean off! I had never seen anything like that.
With a too-short chain and my small chainring done, I was dead in the water. I had to walk the rest of the way -- about three miles. Yay fun.
My bike rides Caltrain every day, and it gets beat up pretty badly with other bikes piled against it on a regular basis. I'm guessing the derailleur hanger probably got bent while on the train.
If your bike suddenly shifts poorly, check the rear derailleur alignment. It can save you from catastrophic failure. I'll need to see if I can straighten the derailleur hanger, or -- failing that -- buy a new one. The destroyed derailleur also needs replacement. Of course I'll need a new chain, possibly a new inside chainring, and certainly new bolts. I haven't examined the crank spider for damage yet.
Or I could just buy a new bicycle.
I bike through the city of Palo Alto, California every weekday during my commute, and I can confirm that Palo Alto leads in walking & biking to school. Transportational cycling is popular in Palo Alto. There are bicycles on almost every street around town, using bike paths and bike lanes where available, taking the lane and asserting themselves in traffic where they're not.
In most cities, streets are designed solely to move automobiles as quickly as possible, with accomodations for other users often an afterthought if they're considered at all. Former mayor and Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition board member Ellen Fletcher is famous for her role in pushing for streets designed for all users, not just motorists. Streets are narrow, traffic moves slowly, and pedestrian and bicycle traffic is heavy in commercial areas of Palo Alto.
Read the San Jose Mercury News article: Palo Alto leads resurgence in walking, biking to school.
San Antonio Metropolitan Planning Organization seeks members for a bicycle advisory committee to help create a safe bicycle system and to promote cycling as a viable form of transportation. San Antonio cyclists, quit your griping and get involved!
James asks Interbike attendees: Who had the best booth at Interbike?
Speaking of Interbike, you've all seen the news everywhere about Eurobike's plans to start a competing bike industry show in Portland of all places. Interbike Times reports that this news has been great in creating inbound links to the Interbike website. Even bad news is good news from a marketing perspective. Some blogs and forums that have mentioned this story include Drink the Kool Aid, MTBR forums, The Goat, Spinopsys, and, of course, BikePortland.
Posted from inside Caltrain.