Yesterday I ventured along St. Laurent to this vegan shoe store/vintage shop/local artist co-op. I had a feeling, before going, that there was no was I’d be able to find shoes in Montreal. And that’s depressing because I have no idea what my shoe size is on a whole, and I picked up these Macbeths.
But they’ll do for now. And seeing as I’m one of those people who left the womb and jumped straight into high tops, it’s crazy to be walking around in something with padding. They’re technically skate shoes, and they absorb shock a bit when I walk.
So I have shock absorbing shoes, that means that I need to start doing things which will allow me to take full advantage of the shock-absorbing qualities. I’m buying a skateboard. That’s right. When I bought my longboard, people were happy because they thought I’d never start riding a short board. I didn’t think I’d get into it either, to be honest. I mean, I’m really good at Skate. And while I don’t have a television anymore, and I gave R. Petti my Xbox 360 because he’s trying to up his Guitar Hero 3 skills, I still maintain that my skill set learned from Skate will carry me through.
However, I feel like I’m buying a whole lot of sports-related paraphernalia recently… Okay, so I’m living in an apartment full of bike parts. I actually recently took apart the Marin, because the wheelset is prime. The cranks are pretty sweet too, so I’m going to use them to make up a black and chrome cruiser. I suppose it’ll be Xan’s until I can build her something more tailored. But back to the Marin, there are parts all over my house. And I think I’m just going to take it all apart, then build it back together again, then take it apart again. Why would you do that, you ask. Well, While I know a fair bit about bicycles, the majority of my knowledge works around fixies. Fixies are pretty light on the componentry, so when people start talking to me about brake types, or shifter sets, or even rear derailleur issues, I tune out. Shifters? Brakes? Derailleurs? All I need to do is wipe down my bike and clean my chain, tighten my bolts and fidget with the angling on my saddle and I’m good to go.
When you want to build bikes, as I do, you eventually come to the realization that not everyone wants a fixie. And not everyone that wants a fixie will actually be able to ride one. If you’re not out playing in traffic every single day on a bike, I worry about building you a fixie. It’s such a different style of riding that I don’t think people grasp how your motivations. Putting a foot down at a stoplight when your pedals aren’t well aligned to get you going quickly? You’ve got a problem. Can’t work with toe cages? Problem. Won’t swerve into harms way to get out of stickier situations? Problem.
Do not even get my started with new fixsters deciding they want to only wear cycling caps. I do it on occasion, but I can maneuver my bicycle. Yes, helmets are ugly. Especially cycling helmets, ick. But people are crazy, and until you’re at a point in your riding when you can almost anticipate what’s going to go on around you, you should be wearing a helmet. Texas dismounts, while terribly unfortunate and at the same time hilarious, happen. And that’s when you’re going to be so happy that you’re wearing a dinky fucking helmet; mostly because you’ll still have the mental capacity to look back and laugh about it later on in life.
[ First posted: 24/10/08 ]