A random collection of thoughts associated with the sport of cycling, as relayed by one hopelessly devoid of too many competing interests. It's a one track blog I'm afraid. But hey, if you like bikes you might enjoy it. So keep reading and the worst that'll happen is it might rot your brain..

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Veloconomics broken down.

I really have nothing much to talk about, but it's been a while so I'll ramble a bit and leave you underwhelmed and possibly misinformed. It has been cold. I think this topic has been covered many times, by many others, and well, unless you have not left your dwelling in days you've probably got that figured out by now. On the plus side traction in the woods, and at the NBX course, has been excellent. On the down side I shaved off my beard prior to attending the Save The Bay "Bay Bash" and my flesh feels like it's been torn asunder by screeching weasels every time I ride. Maybe I'll simply toughen up. I certainly hope so, as I have no plans to resemble a skinny Grizzly Adams again anytime soon.

I finally sold my Kona. That's riveting news, I know. Contain yourselves please! What else happened in the last few weeks, you ask? Not a whole lot. I've frozen my ass off on the road like many of you, and I recently drove through a handful of nails some asshat left in the street in front of our neighbors house (an accursed shithole that has, in the semi recent past, actually been a drive-up crack house). Apparently good contractors are hard to find these days..

On the NEMBA front we're hosting a Winter Warmer Fun Ride at Lincoln Woods on 12/14 to help get people out of Arcadia, and Big River, during the mercifully short shotgun season. We'll have some raffle items, chili and whatnot. We will keep the price low as per usual, somewhere around $5 - $10 with all proceeds going to a local non profit, you know the drill. This will be a great chance to learn a loop out there! It'll be most of my main loop. Figure on 10 miles or so with a bunch of climbing. To avoid two way traffic issues I'm going to get creative, and yes, that means some little double-back type of stuff gets cut out. I'll probably lead a ride and will hit some additional stuff. Although I'll be riding it a zillion times over that weekend so who knows how the legs will feel. Frate will most likely be leading some gnarly huckabilly jam type rides, so if that's your gig you'll want to hook up with him. Hopefully Mike Sam will be all healed up and able to ride as well.

What else.. oh, yeah, the economy sucks. But you all only really care about the veloconomy anyways, and for buyers it is most definitely NOT sucking. These days selling a bike for a fair price is about as likely as finding an ethical car salesman at a JD Byrider. It ain't gonna happen. Be prepared to give it away folks. Roughly 1/2 of retail became the norm for used bike pricing a while ago, and prices aren't going anywhere but down.

But, it's not all doom and gloom. If you were the proverbial ant, and not the grasshopper, then you can get your ass on the internets and profit from the stupidity of others! Just watch out for the usual schmucks trying to unload their "like new, high end, high prefromance SEXY bikes!!!" Nothing says I wanna to sex you up like a bike with "breaks" and some really cool "break" levers that allow you to not ride comfortably on your bars. As an added bonus it also became $100 more valuable between Providence and Boston's Craigslists. Must be all the work involved in posting it on two places that makes it worth the extra scratch. Well, that, the extra brakes and the pump. But hey, if you're local to RI snatch that bad boy up and save big!!

While it may be obvious to those walking among us who are not cyclists, those of us who buy and sell copious amounts of bike crap are a bit blind to the fact that our beloved bikes, like most material goods, do NOT become more valuable over time. At best they will have decent resale values. There are exceptions of course. Even if it was a great deal a horribly ugly bike will likely become the hardest thing you've ever tried to sell three years from now.(Ask anyone who bought a Gary Fisher Joshua, K2 Animal or a late 90s/early 2000s Gary Fisher or Trek VRX). The only ugly bikes, and parts, to buck the trend until now were the Mantis, Y bikes, purple anodized geegaws and the Girvin fork. These examples proving once again that there is absolutely no accounting for taste.

I'll leave you with something safety related, check your brakes before they check you:

Edited to add the below - apparently things are worse than I thought. Interweb battles over pink Shoguns, oh my..

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

NBX 'Cross tonight

The tiny but capable Fit will depart from Jenkins St. Station at 6:00 sharp tonight. It's destination will be Wakefield, RI for another installment of near vomit inducing singlespeed 'cross fun and games. Jim Grimley will be riding shotgun, and he will more than likely smoke most of us pretender-contender types. As per usual I'll be going as fast as I possibly can while having a good time. And, as an added bonus I promise to get some air just for GeWilli.

I may actually try to make a true 'cross race this weekend. Although I may be working on selling my bike so who knows if Plymouth will happen. And, frankly, who really cares?? Does their race really need me there, probably not. I'm sure there will be more than enough skinny guys in plum smugglers to keep one another company without my entry. They do have a 3/4 race though. This means I can sleep until a normal time and not race at early O'clock. I like to be rested before my ass gets handed to me.

Off topic - Anyone read Bicycling? Anyone? C'mon, stop lying and fess up if you do. Somehow two issues appeared via my magical mail slot on Monday. Ugh. Thank the Lord for Dirt Rag, and Urban Velo, huh? I won't even start on the Rapha ad insert, and how unabashedly self deprecatingly funny and awe inspiring it is. Unfortunately I think that joke is going to be missed by too many. If it wasn't a joke, well, than that makes it even funnier. Funnier than Bad Brad's beard growing attempts even! Though I suppose his failure to cultivate a beard over his vacation may have been a good thing. Take heed the warning below those manly boys among us yet to grow the man pelt!!