Thursday, June 11, 2009

I'm a new Crossniac and now I find out we have new kit?

Got a rather breathless (y'know... in tone) message from Will today about a new design for the Crossniac kit.

Unfortunately there was no image attached, or even a description.

Well gee, one could cut the tension with a knife! Let's see it already!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

I am now a Crossniac.

Thanks to a gracious invitation from Will Cortez, I'm now a part of the Crossniacs. I certainly dig their motto "For the love of cyclocross". Indeed! I hope to give a good account of myself while wearing the Crossniac colors. :)

I need to buy a skinny-- time to start gathering change from under the futon cushion and the car seats.

Friday, June 5, 2009

I'm a convicted murderer and I ride...

I'm all for better looking cycling jerseys-- No one pays me a dime to ride my bike so I'll not be wearing a billboard for a line of pens, pregnancy tests, or an industrial adhesives manufacturer. Or a gas company. Or multi-national bank. Or even a transportation authority.

I have a soft spot for anything featuring a skull or other skeletal components. Primal Wear has produced some of my favorites-- the Bone Collector, Grand Trunk (no longer in production), and X-Ray. There's also the Jolly Roger, but I'm not such a fan of flames. Overdone, IMHO.

Northwave produces a very simple, striking Skeleton jersey. Just black and white. They have a Punisher skull jersey. Very badass, but...

(Sorry, Rock Racing's skull design is right out.)

So whenever I see a jersey utilizing a skull motif I pay attention and go in for a closer look.

This time, however, I was rewarded with a real stinker.

Behold! Deathrow Velo!

So are they a "team" or association of cyclists that are united in their incarceration for heinous crimes (and thus unable to ride-- how ironic)?

No, no... that can't be it. Wait a minute... there has to be something here. Um. "Deathrow Velo" is all about being hard-core. Something about being sentenced to death, right?

"Dude. I ride bikes and thus am sentenced to death! Because I'm hard-core!!"

No, no... that doesn't work. Riding bikes is too much fun.

Wait! I've got it. "Dude, I just murdered that trail/sprint/runup! And thus must be sentenced to death. Awesome!!!"

That still seems just so awkward and clunky.

I give up. Maybe "Deathrow Velo" is just a poorly though-out concept for a line of so-so cycling clothing. Trivializing the state-sanctioned murder of a human being (and the victims of deathrow inmates) seems like a pretty poor tactic to make jersey designs seem badass.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Toxic ProTour teams

For the last few years I had been wondering about the "carbon footprint" of the big bike races. Especially the big tours and classics in France, Italy, etc.

Well, just recently Lennard Zinn (of VeloNews) fielded just this question. While he wasn't able to provide much of an answer (other than "huge", which I'd agree with) he DID mention a ghastly practice of many of the team mechanics-- cleaning bike with diesel fuel! And then just dumping the rinsate on the parking lots which then drain into nearby waterways.

I’ll let you calculate that, as I don’t know how to do it. I would imagine that on average each of the 22 teams has five station wagons with roof racks full of bikes, one bus and one truck, all of which drive an average of 200km per day. Then of course there’s laundry, food, lodging, etc. And that’s only the tip of the iceberg compared to the entire race itself. Think of all of the transport of race barriers, grandstands, concessions, start village, etc., not to mention transport and lodging of the fans, publicity caravan, media, organizers, etc. Big footprint.

But if you’re interested in environmental impacts of the race, nothing grates me more than team mechanics who continue to use diesel fuel to clean bikes, spraying it and dumping it in parking lots of, for example, seaside hotels along the Lido di Jesolo in the days before the Giro’s start. Many do use biodegradable cleaners, but plenty don’t, and the first rainstorm it goes right in the Adriatic.

(Excepted from VeloNews Technical Q&A with Lennard Zinn)

What the hell?

I think that the ProTour teams need an injection of badassery. Enough of this ridiculous pampering and ourtrageous pollution.

They need to ride a dirty bike and have it last. A dirty bike is a working bike.

Contrary to what the nicenastys over at BKW may claim about looking PRO, some buildup of road grime or mud actually demonstrates PRO-ness. The dirt says "I ride." A dirty bike and a well-maintained bike aren't mutually exclusive.

For most of the time all my bikes have encrustations of dirt. When they do get cleaned it's typically a "dry" cleaning-- a toothbrush gets rid of excessive buildup. A good chain-lube precludes the need for constant degreasings and cleanings.