How to be cool in the face of a mom jeans scandal.

Well, it seems like everyone is on Obama this week for wearing mom jeans to pitch at some baseball game. Now, I’m not a fan of mom jeans, and I’m sure I never will be, but people seem very distressed. I was on PopHangover earlier today and the mom jeans scandal has resulted in a CNN video complete with uber gay fashion stylists, and the reporter coming to you straight from the back wheel of someone else’s fixie. Yes, indeed. I think the most controversial part about this video is not whether Obama’s jeans are gaudy as hell (because, really, there’s no argument there), but rather why this woman has chosen to report from behind a fixed cog in the suburbs. Really?

Chicks and Bikes

I don’t generally endorse other blogs, unless, of course, they are amazing (much like how this one is in my head). Today, I have another blog for you. No, it’s not deep. Nope, there are no sarcastic remarks or undertones. It’s just what its name says Chicks and Bikes

I love a woman on a bicycle… mm, do I ever. But I digress, some of the photos are really awesome and if you love women (if?!) or if you like bikes (again, if?!), or if you like both (IF?!), you should check it out.

Highlights include:

Near Death Experiences: Laziness

Right outside Revolution Bikurious; lesbian bike shop of choice.

Right outside Revolution Bikurious; lesbian bike shop of choice.

 

Today I almost died thrice, however only one of those near death experiences (NDE) were my fault, ish. NDE is going to be a new blog subset, chronicling how long it will take me to run out of good karma, and get run over by, well, anything.

    Today’s first near death experience came in the form of a door prize. This woman may have broken a world record, seriously, for most efficient use of time while parallel parking. No sooner did she pull in, while on her cell phone, mind you, she flung her door open within literally 1 second of getting into the space. Her car wasn’t even off yet, I’m talking fast. And I was moving at quite a clip when I had to swerve into traffic, right infront of a guy in a blue Taurus, whom I had just pissed off. Honks and cuss-words-of-choice were exchanged, but I lived on.

    The second near death experience came in the form of a windblower, and was so out of left feild that it merited the title spot. Instead of sweeping the sidewalk infront of his shop, this guy, let’s call him Jack, decided to buy what I can only assume was an industrial strength leaf blower. Now, when I was approaching the block with Jack’s shop in it, I saw a man flailing around with what I thought at the time was a large, black, tube for plumbing. It wasn’t. It was an industrial strength leaf blower, and when cans, glass, leaves, twigs, and garbage started flying out into the street ahead of me, I knew I was in trouble. I held my breath as I cycled through, But it was like being pepper sprayed in the eyes at close range. I swirved all throughout the lane, finally pulling into a one way street the wrong way, which I only do when I can’t see, of course, to find my eyes watering like a leak in the Hoover Dam. Again, honks and cuss-words-of-choice were exchanged, but I lived on.

    My final near death came in the form of a “badass on a hog” going to the nearest Provigo to pick up what I could only assume was milk, bread and eggs for either his two year old daughter, suddenly overweight wife, or his mother. He looked like one of those people who are smack dab in the middle of a middle life crisis and found the answer in Harleys. Anyways, he came out from what I thought was just a bunch of idling cars, stopped, right in front of me and then decided to keep going. I think he just stopped to piss me off. This time, no cussing or honking, because no one cares about cyclists or about people in their midlife crisis, everyone knows that!

[ First posted: 23/09/08 ]

Featured

It seems Revolution (Bikurious), of $15 lesbian haircuts fame, has finally got their site up and running. These guys totally hooked me up when I could do no more on my conversion… we’ll note they had to pull the hacksaw out on my old cranks because, well, it wasn’t exactly threaded anymore. 

Anyways, my bike’s on their site… so I kind of feel awesome. Just thought I’d share that one.

Rained out, or should I say in?


Decal-free
So instead of going to Brakeless and setting up my Internet today, I sat in the cafe down the street, checking my emails, uploading all those blogs (sorry!), finding the nearest Canadian Tire, and finding out that there’s a cool little vegan organic market literally 2 blocks away from me. Actually, there are 15 within a half decent radius of where I am now, so I’m going to be doing some experimenting, seeing as the place beside me is small, but I’m not ruling it out until I actually buy something there.

    Anyways, so after my research and catch up was over, I headed back home to weather out the weather, and I got a little crazy with a box of steel wool. I had been using it to clean out my new place when I first moved in, because as previously stated, the place was a mess, but I needed to remove the rust from the fork on my beater conversion. Well, I never even touched the fork, because I had no oil. Rather, I removed all the decals, evened out the paint job, removed some exterior rust, shined up the cranks, and my bike looks pretty damn awesome. Which makes me even more excited about the prospect of a new wheel set. And I’m also pondering keeping my chainring at 3/32 rather than picking up a 1/8 one, but I’ll compare prices when I go to Brakeless, hopefully that will be tomorrow. Because I think they carry coloured chains in 1/8, and a white chain would look really sexy. I also need to order some new grip tape, and I’m thinking I want this Cinelli tape which glows in the dark, but is just plain white during the day, we’ll see though.

    Tomorrow’s game plan is ambitious. I’m going to Canadian tire to pick up a tool set, going to Brakeless to scope out bags & cycling caps. Because everyone knows I’m a cycling cap fanatic. Then, if the router doesn’t arrive from Bell, I’m going to call them, see if I can pick it up somewhere instead, and get that all set up. I’m also going to clean, because once I get those sockets, well, my floor will be coated in bike grime, that much is for certain. I’m also going to finish all my school work tomorrow, which means the day is going to be incredibly hectic, but I had enough time to sand down, and remove the decals from a bike today, I think school work is a welcome task at this point. 

(First posted: 06/09/08)

There’s a four day weekend, every weekend!

Sorry that this wasn't a funny one... next time, I promise.

Sorry that this wasn't a funny one... next time, I promise.

Yes, I have inadvertently scheduled myself so that I get Thursday and Friday off until the beginning of next semester. While this may sound fine and dandy, it means I have no excuse for not doing things, which is not too good. I like at least having one foolproof excuse up my sleeve, you never know when something will come up. But I continue to look on the bright side, on this four day weekend of mine, I will become a pro Allen key turner, as I must assemble things from IKEA, I will also become a poor excuse for a fixed gear cyclist as I will be getting my rear wheel, finally. On top of everything, I must clean my whole apartment (yet again), and I must get this whole phone & internet thing set up. There’s a whole lot to be done, folks. And time is not on my side.

 

    Today I realized how much I hate everything other than my bicycle when it comes to transport. I took the bus to class again, because I still don’t have internet so I still don’t know where I’m going. And I hated every minute of it.  When this internet gets set up, I have a feeling many things will fall into place. Either that or my blind optimism will erode further and I will be forced to take up a skill trade.

     Anyways, back to my bicycle. I hate cycling Montreal, because some streets have separated bike lanes, which make me feel as if I should ride in them. But anyone with two legs and half a brain is in those lanes, and I don’t have enough weaving room to feel at home. I really do miss the hustle and bustle of riding right in traffic. I like to stay alert, I like to dart in and out, I enjoy racing in traffic. Which I know must sound like a death wish, but it’s a rush. I feel very dead when I’m in a separated bike lane, it’s too safe.

     There are other things I dislike about Montreal cycling infrastructure, as well, such as the places to lock bikes. While they are definitely plentiful, it is near impossible to lock your front wheel to your frame, locking your rear wheel without a cable is just impossible. Because there are so many not-so-savvy students in the downtown core, I’d assume there would be many a bike theft lurking. Heck, it is the perfect place to steal bikes. I saw a bike yesterday locked to a pole that stood maybe a meter and a half. There wasn’t anything on the pole, it was just that, a pole. You could lift that bike up and be off with it in 3 seconds flat. I mean, if you’re going to lock your bike to a pole, clearly you haven’t secured your wheels either.

    I have bikes on my mind because I went grocery shopping today, and I went on my bike with just my backpack, only to end up cycling home with one big bag of food and a backpack full of locks, rice, and beans. I was fine other than the one bag that I was carrying, as my leg would collide with the bag every time I pedalled. Thus, I am going to get a messenger bag, and I’m going to get it at Brakeless. Why? Brakeless is awesome, and I’ve been meaning to go there. I will figure out where it is when my internet returns to me, and I will get a messenger bag with a huge cavity so I can haul enough food for a couple of days home, instead of eroding my left knee cap for nothing more than a couple jars of organic jam & some soy milk.

    I’ve realized this post is all about things I need to do, but worry not, because I have gotten things done. For example, today I finally got my student card, I look like hell, but that doesn’t matter. I also found out where to get my pass key on Monday, and I picked up two of my necessary books. I also got groceries, and I’m making my way through some old vinyls Greg gave me. That’s right, I do have Olivia Newton John’s “Physical” now. In other news, I cleaned my entire bathroom, literally. My bedroom will be the next “fully clean” room on the list, but that’s an uphill battle if there ever was one. Anyways, I’m going back to reading this new book of mine. It’s Gender, Class, & Freedom in Modern Political Theory by Nancy J. Hirschmann. I’m not sure if I recommend it just yet, but I’ll keep you posted.

(First posted: 03/09/08)

The perils of cycling fashionably

Cycling FashionAs a cyclist, and more specifically as a commuter, cycling fashion tends to elude me. While it’s no secret that I’ve been slowly building up a fixed gear bike these past couple weeks, it’s also not a secret that I right now ride a cromoly-framed hybrid. I’m not beyond joking about my hybrid, it’s huge handlebars, it’s enormous cassette, and it’s 26 inch knobby wheels. The bike itself gets me from A to B as long as my handlebars fit, but the fashion that comes with riding a hybrid? Well, usually it’s a baby trailer, lycra leggings, or whatever frumpy get up they happen to be wearing that day.

    While I clearly have a love-hate relationship with my hybrid, and everything that comes with riding it, instead of trying to kick the hybrid rider stereotype, I am jumping ship as everyone who goes to university for something to do with writing or graphic design eventually does. Yes, when my conversion is finished, my poor Marin will become the target of my holier-than-thou cyclist wrath. Firstly, the Marin will be outfitted with new decals, either saying “one less fixed gear” ironically, or “granny cycle!”, or maybe, just maybe, both. Secondly, those huge wire basket panniers will be mounted on the back for my groceries. Next, the Marin will fall victim to 1 full roll of reflective tape, pride spokes on the rear tire, and continuing neglect of it’s cassette. Sucks to not be trendy!

(First posted: 23/08/08)