Thursday, November 30, 2006

29er meetup is sponsoring a two day, 29 inch love fest next summer for everybody who would like to try 29er demo bikes on the roots and rocks of killer trails in Decorah, Iowa.

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

l337 h4x0r Lance Armstrong pwn3s Andreu's PC

No matter what you might believe regarding Lance Armstrong and his use of banned performance enhancing drugs, this news is too funny for words. Betsy Andreu filed a police report in 2005 after believing somebody hacked into her computer through her AOL account. She says she believes that Lance Armstrong hacked into her computer, as well as the PCs of Lance's ex-wife Kristin and Oakley sports marketing manager Stephanie McIlvain.

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

Bianchi theft: Publicity stunt?

Rumor mill: Bianchi heist was hoax; Bianchi brand for sale

Do 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?

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.
Read also Freewheel's followup.

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.

Coughing on the bus

Photo by Kismet.

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.

NYPD rewrites parade legislation

In a move designed specifically to stop Critical Mass bicycle rides in New York City, the New York Police Department has crafted new legislation defining a "parade or procession" as consisting of a group of pedestrians or devices "moved by human power," and that these groups must apply for a parade permit. As Streetsblog notes, "So, for the NYPD, thirty cars and trucks clogging up two city blocks is 'traffic.' Thirty bikes rolling freely down those same two city blocks is 'an illegal, un-permitted parade.'"

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

Eurobike USA in Monterey, California

Portland's loss is California's gain: Eurobike's organizers have canceled plans for a 2007 show in Portland, opting instead to signing as a sponsor at the 2007 Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California next spring.

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 Peterson on design and the user experience

I can't believe I've scooped James on this one. Push Button For is a site about interaction design and user experience. They interviewed Rivendell Bicycle Works honcho Grant Petersen. Grant talks about simplicity of design in bicycles and digital cameras, and the influence of racing on bicycle design.

Grant Petersen interview at Push Button For. Also at Chico Gino.


Cyclists love to commute

Statistics Canada released a report on "Workers' perceptions of their daily commute" [PDF file], which says this about cycling to work:
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

Winter cycling clothing

Winter cycling gear
The forecast for Monday is for cold and wet, but I had left most of my winter cycling gear at the office. That's as good an excuse as any for a shopping trip to REI, and this is a good excuse for Christmas gift ideas for the year-round cyclist in your life.

In this photo, the hat, gloves, and pants are new. From top to bottom:
  • Hat: REI Novarra cycling beanie.
  • Jacket: REI waterproof cycling jacket with the all-important pit zips.
  • Torso base layer: Off-brand polypro base.
  • Gloves: Seirus outdoor activity gloves. Fleece lined, waterproof and windproof, but not seam-sealed. We'll see how that works out.
  • Legs base: Patagonia featherweight Capiline long underwear. Pricey but comfy. I'll also wear cycling shorts under these.
  • Legs shell: REI Novarra Express pants. Waterproof, windproof, ankle zips, articulated knees, reflective trim.
  • Socks: Bridgedale hiking socks.

The gear in this photo is for riding in California winter rain. In my experience of real winter cycling in other locations, though, this gear is good for down to the 20s F (minus single digits C) with perhaps the addition of a balaclava, especially for shorter distances.


Risk and cycling

Cyclelicious exists to promote cycling as a safe activity and means of transportation. Other cycling bloggers, such as Cycle Dog, Cycling Dude and Velorution, also work actively to remind cyclists that what we do is not dangerous.

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.


Tags: risk, danger

Thursday, November 23, 2006

More about CLIX quick release

Fixedgear mentioned the CLIX quick release the other day. It's kind of ingenious, but read Karl Karl's deconstruction of Montague's CLIX quick release.

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

Brief history of quick release and lawyer lips

From Tulio's ingenious invention to the modern day.

NJS: Nihon Jitensha Sinkokai

NJS is Nihon Jitensha Sinkokai or the Japan Bicycle Association. NJS exists to promote the bicycling industry in Japan. NJS is also tasked with regulating Japanese track bike racing, or Keirin. For those who believe the UCI's bicycle design requirements are backwards, Japanese Keirin rules -- established in 1957 -- are downright draconian. NJS specifies weight, frame geometry and material, the number of spokes on your wheels, and every component must have the NJS stamp of approval.

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.

Hill climb panda portrait

Hill climb panda plus socks
My sock du jour. Or more accurately I suppose, sock de la nuit. These Sock Guy "Road & Dirt" socks are exceptionally geeky, and the bold, white stripes aid with night time visibility.

This was inspired by iheartbike's sock of the day posts and MasiGuy's sock du jour. Remember, also, that Sock Guy has a blog.

Bonus info: On Flickr, we call these self-portraits taken while cycling Panda Portraits. Check 'em out.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Chocolate milk for workout recovery

Milk does a body good.

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

Sock Guy: Quantity, not quality

Sock Guy socks are, of course, quality socks. MasiGuy and iHeartBikes are having a friendly little competition of who can post the best Sock Guy photos.

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

Chemistry of road rage

Why do we rage on the road? Yolanda/anarkissed theorizes:
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?

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.
Reproduced here with Yolanda's kind permission.

Wichita Falls transit gets bus bike racks

The public transit system in Wichita Falls, Texas recently installed bike racks on their buses. Three of the city's buses have been outfitted with bike racks so far. The front-mounted bike racks cost $1000 each and can hold three bicycles. City transportation planning director Lin Barnett plans to equip the remaining nine buses with bike racks as funding becomes available.

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

Foreign busy body bicycling in Beijing

Thanks for MRussell who pointed out that Gwadzilla posted about this incident which led me to this description and photos of the incident.

Apparently, cars motorists were driving in the bike lane on a street in Beijing. This woman stopped her bike and kept the cars from proceeding down the bike facility.
Photo info: Foreign busy body bicycling in Beijing by richardmasoner.

CycleDog's winter cycling advice

I don't know if anyone has noticed, but it's cold outside. Cycledog is posting a series of articles on winter cycling. He talks about clothing in part 1. In Part 2, Cycledog reminds us to have fun with it, while also giving advice on technique and winter skills development.


Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Beijing taxi driver, cyclist interaction photos

Update here.
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, 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?

San Francisco, JROTC, and the millitary-civilian disconnect

Sorry for the wildly off-topic post, but this news about San Francisco's ouster of JROTC from its high schools reminds me of this important issue. Or read here for a slightly more conservative viewpoint.

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

Campy sex appeal

Humorous Craiglist posting for a new Campagnolo bottom bracket:

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?
YOU: 111mm.
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.

Rob Anderson's blog

Rob Anderson is the guy who filed the CEQA suit that resulted in the injunction preventing the city of San Francisco from painting bike lanes or allowing bicycles on city buses. He has a blog and he discusses his thoughts about his lawsuit here. Found via the comments at Foldable Walter.

French dope lab computers hacked

Computers at Chatenay-Malabry laboratory were penetrated by computer hackers and data stolen. This IOC/WADA accredited lab revealed Floyd Landis had elevated levels of testosterone after his Tour de France victory last July.

L'Equipe, predictably, claims that the hackers were working on behalf of Floyd Landis.

And the beat goes on.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Bike facilities banned for environmental reasons

"Under a preliminary injunction that was upheld Tuesday, The City can continue to plan bicycle improvements, but it may not paint bicycle lanes, install bicycle racks or allow bicycles on San Francisco Municipal Railway vehicles until it comes into compliance with state environmental laws." Read more; Via.

Cycling news

What 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.

Bicycle themed greeting cards

For your friends who are as nutty about cycling as your are: Get Christmas cards with bike chains in the design from Skeese Greets. Via Dallas/Fort Worth Cyber Cycling.
Photo info: Bike chain christmas chain by richardmasoner.

Election commentary: Tin ear in Detroit?

By Steve Andrews. Reproduced here with permission.

Since the late 1980s, in the aftermath of the 1985 oil price crash, Detroit and Congress have seemed joined at the hip in a mutual suicide pact. Detroit promises to pound out larger and faster vehicles, and key members of Congress swear they will sideline any effort to tighten fuel efficiency standards.

Nearly two decades later they’ve succeeded to a tragic degree, under both Republican and Democratic administrations. During that time the auto/light-truck fleet’s fuel efficiency declined by close to 10%. While this pact isn’t the only reason Ford and GM are nearly on life support, terminating this efficiency lock-out deal a decade ago would likely have helped both American car buyers and Detroit’s manufacturers.

Now come the results from last week’s election. A voice for change echoes across the land. Energy policy even earned more than lip service in many races. Yet the ink on the e-vote tally wasn’t even dry when Detroit’s own Rep. John Dingell (D-MI), ranking member in line to chair the House Energy and Commerce Committee, declared that he wouldn’t raise fuel-efficiency standards for U.S. automobiles. A congressman since 1955, he told CNBC on Wednesday, "I’m not sure that there’s any urgent need for us to address those [fuel economy] questions."

This is nuts. Even the normally conservative International Energy Agency’s director Claude Mandel stressed last week that on the efficiency front, "Urgent government action is required. The key word is urgent."

How nuts? AutoNation president Mike Jackson recently claimed that the American driver’s love for power and size, fostered by government policy, has led to "car obesity." Jackson compared the situation to the government putting out two plates; broccoli covers one - "you should eat your broccoli" - but the other is piled high with donuts on a half-price sale. Most folks go for the donuts - the inefficient light trucks and SUVs. Saying, "You can’t leave national security to markets," Jackson called for a $1/gallon new tax on gasoline, spread over a number of years. Sounds like a vote for urgently addressing fuel economy.

In fairness to leadership in Detroit (and very little fairness is due), the American driving public is also on the take here. "We’ve built our entire society to run on cheap gasoline and don’t want to suffer the consequences of major changes to that policy. No gasoline taxes. Don’t force us (via CAFÉ standards) to drive smaller, lighter, more fuel-efficient vehicles. We just want the sugar, no medicine."

But backstopping all of this looms a harsh reality: worldwide production of petroleum liquids will peak, plateau and decline, a process that ASPO-USA projects could happen anytime between now and 2015. Oil industry banker Matt Simmons advises that it would be prudent to assume we’re peaking now and respond as fast as we possibly can to mitigate the attendant negative impacts to our society and economy.

Of late, an estimated 95 percent of federal policies focused on expanding supplies of conventional and alternative liquid fuels: enhanced oil recovery, ethanol from corn, liquids from coal, more oil from Canada’s tar sands, eventually ethanol from cellulose and oil from shale. But it’s pretty clear to this writer that they can’t expand fast enough; there will be a gap between demand for liquids and supply, even before supply plateaus and declines. Further, alternative liquids typically require unusually high levels of energy inputs and generate undesirable environmental outputs. Last year at the Denver ASPO-USA conference, Congressman Roscoe Bartlett posed the seminal question for our policy deliberations: "should we struggle to fill the gap?" That conservative Republican’s answer: no.

Given the scope of our looming transportation fuels problems -- related to national security, long-term supply vs. demand, lack of fuel diversity, too much reliance on the auto, etc. -- a crash program to develop a fuel-efficient fleet won’t by itself create a smooth transition to the post-petroleum era. But it’s time to stop treating efficiency as the wallflower at the dance. No more "it goes without saying..." treatment.

John Heywood, director of MIT’s Sloan Automotive Lab, told the ASPO-USA conference in Boston two weeks ago that substantive reductions in vehicle fuel consumption will require both technology improvements and (the dreaded) changes in consumer behavior. To achieve a crash one-third fuel consumption reduction, fiscal and regulatory measures will be needed.

What might those measures look like? Congress shuns both CAFÉ standards and gasoline taxes as poison pills, yet both should still be on the table. During the 1970s, CAFÉ worked. A few sample elements of a broader program:

  • Set an oil savings target for the transportation sector, such as 1 million barrels per day by as proposed by Senator Landrieu during the 108th Congress, but make sure it has a demanding timeline and enforcement teeth. One path would include closing fuel economy loopholes: the dual-fuel loophole, the truck loophole, etc.
  • Provide incentives for accelerated development of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Apart from being very efficient vehicles, PHEVs fuel-switch a large portion of their energy consumption from gasoline to grid-supplied electricity.
  • Establish a feebate system. This revenue-neutral approach establishes sliding-scale fees for vehicles less efficient than a newly established standard, plus sliding-scale rebates for vehicles that beat that standard. For the standard, consider figures developed (for CAFE purposes) by the Union of Concerned Scientists: 40 mpg by 2012, 55 mpg by 2020.

This challenge isn’t rocket science. Several small European vehicles on the market today get over 60 and 70 mpg. Even light trucks and SUVs can make a great leap forward; over two years ago, Toyota started selling in Japan an SUV that gets 41.7 mpg -- the four-cylinder Highlander. More than technology, the largest challenge is finding the political will to move forward with.

Given the relatively flat or negative movement in fleet efficiency today, even a crash program won’t produce a silver bullet. But it’s probably the best -- and most ignored -- silver BB available today. We need Rep. Dingell and the next Congress to act on that widely accepted premise.

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

Human powered cargo transport

Lords of  the Logistic shows photos of people carrying huge loads on their backs or bikes. Via Bicycle C-U and other places...

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Environmentally friendly bra more than meets the eye

Inspired by the Mighty Morphing Power Rangers, lingerie maker Triumph unveiled the mighty morphing "Bra Rangers," so called because the bra cup can be unfolded and used as a shopping bag. Read more at Terradaily. Via Sue and her Urbana-Champaign bicyle blog who was glad to *ahem* get this off of her chest.

Ridley Scott: Boy and Bicycle

Ridley Scott: Boy and Bicycle

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.

Via ScreenGrab.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Volunteer at the 2007 Amgen Tour of California

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.

Click here to sign up. Hat tip to Biking Bis.

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Thursday, November 09, 2006

Cycling for bariatric surgery patients

The Amazing Shrinking Man has started a new resource for cyclists who have undergone bariatric surgery -- the Cycling 4 Bariatric Patients Wiki.

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.

Bike haiku link bait

I'm a sucker for Bike Haiku, which are Haiku poems with a bicycling theme. If you post bike haiku and I find it, your link bait effects are shameless but effective. The best way to ensure I find your bait is to link to Cyclelicious and make sure your post is pinged so I can find your post with Technorati.

Here's Warren's bike haiku about riding at night. Here's a bike haiku about a tragic loss.

"Shannon and the colourful leaves" by Matt Corks.
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.

See related: bicycle, haiku, link+bait

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Sheldon Brown and Multiple Sclerosis

I'm a bit behind on my reading, and I was stunned when I learned that Sheldon Brown can't ride his bike anymore. Sheldon has had difficulty walking since about a year ago. He rode his bike through the summer, but he fears his bike-riding days are over, sticking to his Greenspeed trike to help him stay upright.

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

Cycling news

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.

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National Ride Your Bike to the Polls Day

The Dude proclaims it, so it must be so.

I've ridden my bike to the polls several times. In the myriad places I've lived, voting places seem generally to be at places with little parking. I perform my civic duty and think of my fellow man by freeing up a parking space and road space for him.

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Translink now available in Bay Area

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.


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NYC Marathon: Lance Armstrong places 869th

Lance Armstrong finished the New York City Marathon today in 2 hours, 59 minutes, 36 seconds, just seconds shy of his goal of finishing in less than three hours. “I can tell you, 20 years of pro sports, endurance sports, from triathlons to cycling, all of the Tours — even the worst days on the Tours — nothing was as hard as that, and nothing left me feeling the way I feel now, in terms of just sheer fatigue and soreness,” Armstrong said.

Read more at the New York Times. (Registration required).

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Guy Fawkes Night

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

Q&A with Davis Phinney

Today's Q&A is with Davis Phinney, winnigest cyclist in American history to date. Please visit the Davis Phinney Foundation's website and consider making a donation to support Parkinson's Research.

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 Boulder, CO. My father had done some riding in the early 50's and even competed in a couple of races, but that had no relationship to my interest in the sport.

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 Larimer Square in downtown Denver in April of '76. I had yet to own a proper jersey, and was wearing a wool longsleeve undershirt that was tucked into my shorts. The course was very short; one block, turn, one block, turn, etc. and somehow I held position coming into the final corner and just beat a senior rider to the line. It was great.

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 Bordeaux stage in the '87 TDF. And many more... Mostly the thing that stays with me is how fortunate I was to be able to do what I loved and travel the world, meeting so many amazing people. And of course, being from Boulder and having a platform like the Coors Classic to strut my stuff could not have been better.

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 Europe that you raced in? Why that one

The biggest and best race in Europe is the Tour, and that was always a primary focus for us -- so that would have o be considered a favorite race. But I also enjoyed the Giro D'Italia, as it was lower key and the people, as well as the food were special.

Do you have a favorite race in the US that you raced in? Why that one?

Nothing in the US will ever surpass the Coors Classic for me, in terms of vision and energy; it was the perfect race for its place in history, with the ideal race director in Michael Aisner.

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 Colorado in August and the Drafting for Davis Stanford event in September.

You're the winningest cyclist in American history, do you think your record will ever be beat?

Well it's a loose record of sorts. I can no longer name each and every win, but the total number (328) is solid. Someone like Scott Moniger. if he keeps going could get close. We'll see...

How did it feel to be inducted into the US Bicycling Hall of Fame?

A nice honor.

You are based out of Boulder, Colorado. Do you think it's becoming a cycling epicenter these days?

Boulder was the epicenter for cycling in the 1980's and '90's but has cooled significantly since. Lacking the Coors race as a drawing point, Boulder is just one of many nice places to ride. But the roads are appreciably busier than they used to be (with traffic), so the area is not as cycling friendly as it once was.

Run, Lance, Run. Armstrong at the New York City Marathon

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.

Mentioned at Biking Bis, Velochimp, and elsewhere.

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Bike paths boost property values

But we already know that.

Cycling news

Colorado program motivates children to bike to school.

UK Mayor urges residents to get on your bicycles.

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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Eurobike, Interbike PR and Crisis Management

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.

What do you think? Is Interbike handling this positively with their blog mentions and press releases?

Don't miss Masiguy's latest thoughts about "Port-o-Bike" over at Drink the Kool Aid.

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Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Rad Ball: Soccer on fixed gear bicycles

Cycling soccer video

Germans on fixed gear bicycles playing soccer. Some amazing moves!

Trashed my rear derailleur

My commuter bike had been shifting poorly all day, but I didn't pay much attention to it. On my evening commute, though, my chain made a sudden *crunch* noise and immediately my rear wheel skidded to a stop -- the chain broke and wrapped itself around the rear wheel, and my rear derailler was busted to shreds.

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.

Palo Alto leads in walking & biking to school

Palo Alto bicycle tag

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.

Cycling news

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.

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