are sometimes smooth and silky, and other times tired and tight.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Back to the Happy Ever After

Perhaps you didn’t know this, but a cycle tour without a map, is like new poatatos without the smell of mint. You possibly were also unaware of the fact that a new place sets you simmering as your hometown never could. And, dare I say, cycling at the tail end of an excursion, with a permanent view of a crocodile of bent backs in front could give anyone a hump.

A leisurely pace, Wool caps, Tweed Jackets, Knickers, toe clips, and properly secured luggage. You’d think this was footage from a Rapha training camp, or a Portland group ride.

People of all ages, ranks and station, rediscovering their common humanity in finding countryside, exercise, and companionship all in one.

So, grab yourself a hot cup of tea, and enjoy this Cyclist’s Special, brought to you by British Rail Film Board, circa 1955.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Illustrating the point

OK, I know. I've been posting too much fluff. I'm actually busy with a few texts, trying to rectify that situation.

In the meantime, let me share a few thoughts about the current cover of VeloNews, which I kind of like, but I wish I didn't.


What do I like?

I like that the artist (who is it? Anybody know?) managed to nail Lance, and his asymmetric wall eyes.

I like that the artist also nailed Floyd's disproportional forearms.

What I'm not so sure about is...

I'm not so sure about the look on Floyd's face. Not only does it not capture his likeness very well, the fact that he's watching Lance, leads me to wonder how much research the artist did?

I'm also not sure what to say about Basso. The only thing that clues me in to the fact that it is indeed Ivan Basso, is the LiquiGas kit, and the fact that his name is on the cover.

That's it.

Yeah, I could go on, but I'll take a leap of faith, and assume that the illustrator who did the work isn't a cycling fan. In the end it doesn't really matter.

But hey, don't get me wrong. I should make one last, very important point.

I congratulate VeloNews for hiring an illustrator to do a cover. In fact, I suggest that they make this a new policy. Now that, would be a good thing.


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Mr. Armstrong, calling Mr. Armstrong...

I believe you should have a chat with your publicity agent.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Duckie's descent...

So here I am, zapping channels, and what do I see?

You don't want to know. Really. OK. I'll tell you.

Pretty in Pink
was a long, long time ago. The simple fact that I remember it clearly dates me. If you add the fact that I was pulling for Duckie to somehow pull things off, and know what that means, then you'll know more about me than I really want you to know.

But, but, but... seriously Mr. Cryer, I realize that things may have not worked out as well as you hoped they would have back in 1986. Your hair has gotten all wierd. You have to play the nerdy brother to Charlie Sheen, in Two and a Half Men, but seriously... don't you ever draw the line?

Couldn't you, "Duckie, 'That's why I ride a bike", at the very least have insisted on wearing a normal helmet? Possibly taken the time to pull the arm warmers up? Maybe even done a little research, to discover the fact that while we shave our legs, we cyclists do not wear thigh high socks?

It's a sad day.

OK, enough of my sad rant, on to the evidence.

Monday, January 12, 2009


Currently getting some buzz and whatnot, is a year old award winning advertising campaign for a German courier service, so I thought I'd hop on the bandwagon.

It appears that commercial photographer Hans Starck received some inspiration from images of old G-force tests. The word is that he achieved his results by taking pics of his subjects as they sat in the back of a convertible going 200 k/ph, instead of sitting in NASA centrifuge.

Impressive images, no doubt. The only problem we have is the fact that we’ve never seen a messenger break a sweat, let alone deal with wind resistance.



Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Tapping the Future

Rumors have been flying that after the success of Mini-Phinney, and the recent announcement that cyclists Riccardo Riccò and Vania Rossi are expecting their first child, Saris Cycle Group and a secret partner have been collaborating on a new product, set for realease in the fall of 2009.

After a little digging, we discovered what that was.

Image Hosted by

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Commercial Appeal (The One, the Real Thing, and Wanting It)

Anybody who has raced in the U.S. knows that there's one thing that makes all of the sacrifices involved well worth it. Yes sir, when you're reaching for the finish line, you dig down deep inside your mind, the strength that you need, the will to succeed, this is it. You've really got to want it, and after a race, I want it.

After riding through arctic conditions through the dark, dank depths of winter, only to be greeted by the wet and windy spurts of spring, followed by a sub Saharan stifling summer, just to find yourself driving for hours on end, to circle a nondescript industrial park for 60 minutes, the thing that makes it all worthwhile is that can of icy cold Coca-Cola.

Yes indeed, Coke is it.

postscript: Who would have ever thought that long before Neo knew Kung Fu, that he was a bike racer, and was hired to endorse Coca Cola in a Breaking Away inspired commercial?

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Commercial Appeal (Stella)


Much to my surprise, as I sat in the Landmark Sunshine Theater, eating a spinach knish from Yona Schimmel's, waiting to see The Wrestler, I spotted yet another biking commercial. This one wasn't for a car or onbijtkoek, nope, this one was for beer.

Considering the fact that this was New Years afternoon, I wasn't really interested in the product, but none the less, I watched the ad. Calling it that, an "ad", does some disservice to the creators of this very short, very commercial, commercial film.

The basic plot is pretty simple, after all, despite what I just wrote, this is a commercial. Two brothers, amongst a peloton of post WWI racers in southern France, look at a photo of their "Papa", and pledge their victory to him. The race starts, they attack early, get a gap, and it looks like they have things wrapped up until the front tire gets a flat, right as they pass a cafe.

I initially thought there was going to be some nod to the Eugène Christophe affair, but that would have been too complicated. Anyway, as one brother fixes the flat, the notices a nice cold glass of Stella Artois (if there is such a thing as a nice glass of Stella), so he promptly lets the air out of the rear tire, so they can have a beer. As they sit there, knocking back their pintjes, they spot Papa's pic on the wall of the cafe, just as the peloton passes. The end.

Once you see the production levels involved, coupled with the wardrobe and props, and even a Francophone Fausto Coppi clone as the lead, there's not really much that I can say, but chapeau!


Climbing the wall.


Point deduction: the guy on the left is far too big to be at the front of a climb.