Thursday, February 28, 2008

Headed East

There is a good gallery of yurts on Polar Inertia right now. You should go check it out.

In othernews, headed out east tomorrow to the great state of Maine to visit Downeast Bicycle Supply and lots of dealers. Sounds like they have even more snow than we do...I won't be updating for a couple of days, but stay tuned. I'm sure they'll be a good story or two from the road.

In othernews, Thunder Leap looks to be going down tomorrow and I'm going to miss it.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


I was in the back yard this morning, and the amount of snow piled on top of the grills was so sad. I think I'm goin' to dig one out next weekend and fire it up. Grilling was something I used to do all of the time, but in the last few years not so much. Stuff just tastes better when it's grilled, that can't really be argued. Veggies, fish, steaks, whatever.

Sifting through the fall out from the death of Matthew Manger-Lynch in the TDC on Sunday. It was on the front page of the Trib' yesterday, and there seems to be a ton of animosity towards cyclists in the city of Chicago. Not exciting to read about that, as I've had some great rides there.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


Photo @ Newlow
I got a message yesterday from a reader, Anna, in Austrailia who wanted to know about the kits we wear to stay warm when its cold out and we ride. Personally I don't go anywhere in the winter without polypro long underwear and wool socks. Beyond that, I dress in layers, lots of wool. Getting a decent hat made of technical fibers or merino wool that can fit under a helmet is also an essential piece of the puzzle to staying warm when the mercury drops. Mittens over fingered gloves, plastic bags on your feet and Nokian studded tires round out the kit for me.

The above shot Robin Davies took of the run up to the Pugsley Drag Race on Sunday afternoon. It was well after 5 pm and still day light! It was pretty cool to be out on the ice and see the sun set over the city. For the first time this winter, they over predicted the snow fall, and we were dusted only. sweet.
The ZR ships to SoCal today for a Bike Mag review, so watch for that in about 3 months...

Monday, February 25, 2008


I am stoked by this news from The Collective. However, I am very bummed to hear this news from yesterday's Tour Da Chicago stage.

Studded For Your Enjoyment

Thanks Djonn for the pics.

As I’ve repeatedly said in the past weeks, this winter has been the harsh mistress, but a slight weather respite yesterday combined with several cases of cheap canned domestic lager from our brewing pals all over the great state of Wisconsin, and the tireless work of Djonn and Jeff organized some of the most fun I’ve had on a bike in a fortnight.
With temps hovering in the mid thirties, I spent most of the afternoon chopping ice and moving snow. Around 2 pm, I mounted the pit bike to spin up to the liquor store to get supplies and test the new/used CETMA rack I bought from the Darkness at the swap last month.
Got my gear together and headed to town at 4:30, with a pretty lady giving me a ride into Madison. I met up with Djonn in Tenney Park, where we found Jeff and headed out onto Lake Mendota. What a barren, but beautiful place. Within a few minutes, we were joined by Robin and a few of the usual suspects. It was apparent that we’d be unable to race on the lake with 4 inches of slush killing any momentum. Luckily Craig and Vee showed up on Pugsleys, and a drag race format was hastily put together. After the sun set and the wind picked up, we moved out mobile party to the ice skating ponds for some figure 8 mayhem. Spills were sustained, and beers were spilled. The Nokian Studs hooked up great and I felt like a little kid just playing around, seeing how far I could lean before falling.

We moved on to Olson’s house for a bonfire and more beers before our final destination, the abandoned building for 24 Minutes of the Abandoned building. I hadn’t been since September and even with the gate in corner 3 open, the conditions were as sketchy as I’d ever seen. On about my third lap, I went dowwwwn hard, sliding about 20 feet on my back, and popped up completely unscathed.

Scott S., MOTAB rookie took the victory. I’d been outside for about 6 hours by the time I headed home, and I was feeling pretty good. We have a winter storm warning here today for another 6 to 8 inches of snow, and I’m headed to Maine this weekend for work, so the riding fun is probably going to be on hold until next week, sadly.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Goin Back To Cali

Earlier this week I mentioned both Frostbike and my homeboy Petar from Mavic, yesterday, it all came together for Snot Rocket reporter Lord Hayden at the Tour Of California. Last weekend I heard that there might be some spots open in one of the Mavic cars for a stage or two. I couldn't be there, but Hayden, was born to ride along. His two passions afterall are listening to trucker music and watching COPS. Here is his report from yesterday's stage:

Pro-caliber recap of stage 4 - Lord Hayden edition

8:30 - stalk around house muttering to myself, "what the fuck, where the fuck, fucking raincoat, fuck" for 15 minutes. Finally grab spare raincoat from garage and bike to start line.

9:00 - meet guys from Mavic team cars, figure out who I'm riding with.

10:00 - we're off, I'm in Mavic car #2, driven by Pete from Mavic (who knows DP, Mike Teff, and Andrew Harrison from mechanicamizer's school in Colorado). Other passenger is Jeff, a retired mailman who is working (volunteering) with Mavic on the tour. He's one of those repeat shop customers who eventually gets so into being at the shop that he starts working there for fun. Not bad for a second career, but I can't imagine myself at 55 working with jackasses like myself at 25. Definitely a Mavic fanboy, not a bad guy but I did not approve of his ordering Pete to turn off the XM station playing Misfits and The Dwarves, followed by his bitching about some station in San Diego that only played smooth jazz and not real jazz. It would turn out that some punk rock was just what this stage could have used.

10:30 - we're through the neutral zone and off. Rock Racing has 5 riders in the field, but they've had about 50% of the airtime on race radio so far. Apparently they blew all of their $ on the fancy duds and none on rain gear, and were also ordered to switch to a different channel briefly so that could get yelled at by the race directors.

11:00 - we're cruising along my commute, weird with no traffic. The conditions are absolutely miserable, whipping headwinds and rain, 48 degrees.

11:00 - 4:00 - Long stretch. I was in the front car, which is positioned far enough in front of the race that you can't see shit, especially with the curvy roads and the weather. There wasn't much to see anyway, I imagine, just dudes thinking "fuck cold fuck bikes fuck my 2% bodyfat gimmee potpies". The break that started about 20 miles in has held ~ 3 minutes for hours. I'm on hour 5 of 7.5 hours without pissing. Quizno's makes the worst fucking cookies on the planet. Lots of playful bitching from the Mavic cars about the peloton only averaging 19 miles an hour. I would have been going about 10 with that wind and those rolling hills in the alternate world where I wouldn't have just stayed inside on such a day.

I am pissed I didn't get a shot of the Rock Racing Escalade, but it's a site to behold. Think about that metalhead you knew in middle school who got into graphic design in high school.

4:30 - The break crumbles, as rider 131 and 2 others stay out. This splitting of the break allows our car to actually get into the race, and we're following the Hincapie/otherdude break that's behind 131. Could our fortunes get any better? YES THEY COULD, A FUCKING RAINBOW IN THE SKY!!! I took many pics for robo-hubby ZR, he likes rainbows. We wind into San Luis Obispo (SLO-town if you're in the know) and ride in to the finish behind the 2nd and 3rd place guys.
5:30 - My bus leaves in an hour, I haven't stretched my legs nor my kidneys nor my liver in many moons, so I head down to the Black Sheep Bar to catch up with my favorite Valley Girl / sometime co-worker Mary (who had described both the conditions and the potholes in SLO as "Gnarly"). She bought me a Firestone Ale, then was kind enough to drive me to the bus station. She also told me about how her favorite dive bar in town had re-opened, but she now has too much allegiance to the Black Sheep for it to be her favorite bar anymore. I've heard this story several times but I'd gladly hear it again tomorrow.

9:30 - know how this goes. 3 hours later I arrived in Salinas, and since it was 45 minutes until the bus left for Monterey I found a watering hole near the bus station. I think it was called Rosie's or Susie's or Guyski's, all I know is that I pounded two Tecates and a generous shot of Hornitos in 35 minutes, and my mindset was vastly improved. I did get a "whoo-eee" from the elderly latina with four pounds of mascara next to me for my drink order, but I told her I'd been on the bus all day to divert her scorn.

10:30 - back in Seaside, hopped on the Surly and rode through the rain towards home. Stopped to get a 12er o' PBR at the corner boozerium, and told the shoppekeep about the day's ride. He's kind of a meatheaded Italian, and he said, "man you think you had a long day, those racers are like a bunch of fucking Steve Austins out there!" Yes, indeed, Stone Cold would have been proud of all of our finest cyclists today.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Got One

My new Travellers Check was here at work when I showed today. Took it out of the box and looked it over. I've been waiting for this since last fall when I saw it at Interbike. The S&S couplers are one of the most intellegent things I've come across in 10 years in the business of bicycles. I'm excited to try it out, and I've already begun planning trip to chicago that involves buses, trains and the Check!

Did you see the eclipse last night? Pretty sweet. I can see how it would have scared the hell out of primative cultures though...all of a sudden the moon is getting dark. Oh, and the US shot down that pesky satellite last night, whew.

Time to get to work, I'm feeling a bit better today. I did little other than sleep yesterday so I should.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

This Just In

from number 9:

"This Friday, we of the 1331 E. Dayton house of radness and douche-baggery proudly host Meghan Korol's birthday. Here is the run down:

-Its spandex themed (I had nothing to do with this)
-Starts at 9:30pm
-There will be a keg and Jello shots
-Weather permitting, there will be ice skating at Tenney Park before hand
-Meghan likes George Washington so expect something having to do with George Washington

See you there in your spandex wear"

God willing, I'll be there. And a party at Cronometro the same night, and Bockfest and a swap, and MOTAB which I haven't been to since September.... When is a guy supposed to have a quiet weekend at home to recover? Off to Maine next weekend and Marquette a couple of weeks after that...then it'll be spring or something like it.

A Theme

It's cold outside. I'm sick. It feels like I've been typing that over and over again for about 2 weeks. Surly Travellers Check was hastily ordered yesterday before they sold out, and I'll start building it up tomorrrow. Now I've got to sell a bunch of stuff to pay for it. See you all on Saturday at Revolution Cycles for the swap.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

About Time

Hey, I think some high fives are in order. Sweet crude just hit $100 a barrel. No reason really, it's just $100 a barrel now.
Thought you'd like to know.

Tour Of California

Ben Delany/Velo News Photo

The above is a shot from Velo News yesterday of my buddy Petar from Mavic (on the right gluing some tubulars) looks like he's having a blast. Anyhow, the ATOC is rolling as I type this, and the race is bigger than ever this year, so that is good to see. Sounds like Lord Hayden may be riding in the Pedros car on Thursday, we'll have to get a report from him as that comes together.

I hate to be the guy that uses his blog to despense hate, but Fuck Rock Racing. There, I have that off my chest.

This weekend was great and I had fun, but the sickness kicked in some new toe holds and is really dug in now due to a lack of sleep and too much booze. Got to party down at 1 On 1 again this year, and thanks to Geno and the gang for hosting the HED Wheels Retrospective/Frostbike party on Saturday night. Had a great talk with Nate from Monkeywrench in Licoln about the state of the industry, and the rise of the city bike. And small bikes were derbied out back as they often are at the OOO Bike Shop.

Also, 650b peeps, head over and check out the newest addition to the Crooked Cog network, Tell Arleigh that DP sent you.

Monday, February 18, 2008


Thats about all I've got to say right now. Frostbike was good, great to see a bunch of old freinds and to make some new ones. The drive back was delayed, and much booze was drank last night. Props to my new crew at DMR and to Lance from TRP. Jeff G. Holt, you sir are one of the great ones, thanks for bringing SoCal to a hotel bar in Minneapolis!
More tomorrow.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Twin Cities Bound

Like coach would say, "lets git it on!"

Thursday, February 14, 2008

ANT Rack

Brad from Urban Velo shot the above pic of an ANT bike at the NAHBS show. If you still have questions as to why ANT bikes are the best, get your eyes checked.
Attention to detail, son.
In other news, the ZR is headed to SoCal, without me sadly, to be photographed for an upcoming bike review in Bike Magazine. Very exciting. Word is it may also get used as a test wagon for a White Brothers Fork that is 650b specific. If only I could find a way to include myself in that package and spend a few weeks in the warm southwest ripping some single track. Hard to believe it's been 4 years since I lived out there...

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


Stumbled across this Capricorn rack on B-Rose's site. Very stylish.
I bet I have drank 20 mugs of green tea since yesterday morning.
Haven't heard too much about this film but it looks interesting.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Something To Read

Got the sickness, stayed home from work today. Cold as hell, feel like crap. Luckily the new Bike Magazine showed up yesterday. Lots of edit this time around...and I've got a trail profile in the 50 States/50 Trails article of Flow in Marquette. Came out pretty sweet.
I'm gonna make some tea now and then go back to bed.
Oh, and to validate this winter, the inch or so of snow we got last night this morning, pushed Madison over the all time record of 76 inches. Its snowing still, and we've got a lot of winter left to go. Radical.
Headed up to the Twin Cities this weekend for Frostbike, and I'm excited. Can't wait to see some old pals, to stop by 1 on 1 and Cars-R-Coffins, and generally get out of town for a couple of days. Watching the weather last night, it sounds like MLPS has only had 25 inches of snow, which is crazy. It also looks like it'll be in the 20s there this weekend. Usually the weather for Frostbike is super cold...

Monday, February 11, 2008

NAHBS 2009 To Be In Indy

Handbuilt bike show to the Midwest! That is the word this morning. Very exciting, because I am far more likely to drive 5 hours than fly across the country to attend the show! I'll post some dates on that when I have them. Here is a link to to an article by Cycling News' James Huang covering transportation and city bikes. Beautiful stuff there, so get your drool cups out.

In other news, I've got the sickness that has been going around. I'm pretty run down, not in a great mood. Wish I was on a tropical island....Also, the new Cog Magazine is out, I'm looking at mine right now. WOW. Milwaukee in the House. Nice Job Peter. Also, Lyle nice work on the Cognition ad.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

I Don't Want To Be Cold

Right now -7, feels like -31. Wind gusts, strong at times. High today of -2.

Totally sweet.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Friday Has Finally Arrived...

...Like the proverbial side of meat carried by a guy on a unicycle. In other news, the UCI has added the Sun Prairie Cross race to its calendar for this fall. That's most likely going to lead to a much larger need for cow bells, tequila and beer around our house hold. Not to mention more taco shells. But that's a good thing, right?
Alright, time to work.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Keep On...

Sakes alive this winter just keeps on coming, huh? Handbuilt Bicycle Show starts tomorrow in Portland. Wish I was going to be there to see some people I don't get to see very often. I'm sure they'll be some mind blowing, beautifully crafted bicycles there, but that goes without saying.
Put the CETMA rack on the Pit Bike last night. Bomber. I'm pretty sure I could carry a pony keg on that thing. There is only one way to find out!
Went to put some new wiper blades on the car today, and before I can even get them on, I sliced my thumb open on the packaging and bled all over the damn place. By the time I was testing the power of the BOSCH Icon blades (which are the cats meow by the way) I was faint from the blood loss.

I'm a fucking spazz.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


Thats how many inches fell today. Totally shut everything down. Got stuck 3 times on the way home. Jammed the Element in a snow bank that used to be my driveway, checked to make sure it was off the road, and called it a day. I don't forsee myself going anywhere for a while....


The other day I was listening to Marketplace on NPR and it was mentioned that sales of Colt 45 malt liquor were down. I mean, the cans are bigger. You can buy tall boy singles. It makes you drunk. It's associated with Billy Dee Williams.

Does't Colt 45 kind of sell itself?

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Another 6-10 Inches Of Snow!

WTF? Winter is fo'real this year.

Lament For My Lost OM Flyer

The above photo is of Andy Gregg's 1984 SE Racing OM Flyer. Its a 26 inch BMX crusier for those that don't know what it is. Once upon a time in a far off land I had one. It was black, I think it was an 85 or an 86. It had Bullseye hubs and cranks, and a chrome Landing Gear fork. I bought and sold it in college when I lived in Marquette. Bought it from a guy named Jason Lashay and sold it to a guy named Matt Armstrong. Jason needed money, and I had some. I needed money and Matt had some. I owned for about a year, and it was a really cool bike, very fun to ride especially at the North State BMX track.
The bike was the coolest piece of vintage cycling shit I'll ever own. I broke my collar bone and separated my shoulder early on in the summer and was pretty bummed out. Ended up parting it out a bit, but sold all of the vinatge stuff to Matty. A couple of months later he comes up to me at a bar and says he needs to buy me a beer. I'm like what for, and he tells me that he sold the bike to a guy in Japan on e-bay for a grand. And I was like whats e-bay? (this was like 2000) I'm still a little mad at him, but what can you do?

Monday, February 04, 2008

Sad Day

Sheldon Brown has died. It is a sad day for bike nerds everywhere, myself included. For those who had never read his stuff, Brown was old school in every way, and knew more about bikes than just about anyone out there. He'll be missed.

Rickshaw Bagworks

It's taking them a long time to get their stuff out there, but from what I've seen, on Flickr anyways, Rickshaw Bagworks is going to make really sweet, well thought out bags. In fact this is a very smart bag for carrying wheels. If you've ever had to get a wheel somewhere by bike, you understant the challenge. I'm looking forward to seeing more of their stuff.

Let The Rat Race Begin!

You got it! It's Monday. Don't even try to think too hard about the week ahead, just look up at your cat calendar that says "Hang in there the weekend is coming" and relax. Here, this will help. As long as you like things that rock.

Sunday, February 03, 2008


Just bought an old RCA Victor radio out in Columbus. I've been wanting/looking for one for a while for our kitchen table. We were inspired to look at antiques during a trip to Milwaukee. (thanks sanchez)
It is a pretty simple little box.

"This is to certify that this instrument has the acoustical balance which produces the tone of the 'Golden Throat'." Says the lable on the back. Got NPR tuned in and the rich sounds of string quartets fill our house. Currently getting my strength up for the last NFL: game for months. It's going to be tough without football on the weekends, I guess that just means it's time to race bicycles on the weekends, or something.

Looks like Zito won Stupor Bowl, again. Man, not even a speeding Oldsmobile can keep that man down. I'm toasting a frosty PBR in your direction, you elegant bastard.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Brew City Stumbler

Rolled down to Milwaukee last night for some fun times in the big city. First we checked out the Body World exhibit that we'd heard many good things about at the Milwaukee Public Museum. Thanks to the wonder polymer Plastinate, you can now see the amazing beauty of the human body with no skin in the way!
After working up a big appetite checking out dead bodies, we had a little chow at the Ale House, and then headed over the the Wisconsin Bike Fed's "Love Your Bike" Party.
Lots of folks, and some decent beers there. Got a sneak peek at Cog Magazine #2, and its looking pretty good. Talked some racing, talked some cold weather commuting, then talked about the pista explosion and how ZR is big in Hong Kong. Then we followed Jason Sanchez back to his place for some deep talks, mexican wrestling masks, sweet trophy plans, and saw some really rad old magazines! True classics.
On the drive there, I saw that the Miller Brewerey and the Harley Davidson factory are LITERALLY across the street from each other...nuts.
Kind of snowing a bit outside right now, but quite a bit warmer than its been, down right balmy.
I wonder how the Stupor Bowl is going right now....

Friday, February 01, 2008

Hey, Y'all!

After some collabo with Robin Davies yesterday, the fire for another print Snot Rocket is officially stoked! That being said, marketing has begun in earnest, and you'll soon see the above ad in Urban Velo and beyond (Thanks to Jeff G. for the layout help). For those just tuning in, the Snot Rocket was originally a little fan zine for cold weather commuters, and it hasn't been published since about this time of year 2004. But I've collected a lot of bullshit since then to print, so it's on and when its done you'll know. Also, I made an agreement with myself to have a post here once a day on New Years day, and so far so good. I promise I won't bore you with stuff about me mostly, but I will link you to weird shit and stuff about cold weather riding, for real!