Opinion/Analysis

Even Vegas-haters had to admit: This was the best Interbike show in recent memory.

And what a difference six months makes! This spring, the questions were flying:

I confess: I’m conciliatory toward car drivers. And hard as hell on my fellow cyclists.  

That’s right I didn’t see anything in the product area that blew me away. And, of course, I’m sure I’ll get comments from some manufacturer that says they had the new "XYZ" wheel, bars, stem, frame material or saddle profile. Sorry I missed your freaking innovation.  

Bike racing: Meh. I used to be a tifosi. Stopped paying attention about the time Roy Knickman retired. Dave Towle would un-Friend me on Facebook if he only knew how little I cared.  

Ray Keener: OK, I’ve gotten in trouble before writing about the Gender Gap in cycling, so I’ve brought in a partner, Diane Lees from The Outspoken Cyclist in Cleveland, Ohio, to share the heat. 

Streets are narrow in Amsterdam. Minds are not.  An atmosphere of tolerance prevails. That most basic freedom, personal mobility, is joyfully expressed in the ceaseless stream of cyclists gliding about the city.

As a former Category One racer and advertising salesman, my friend John Kodin is no stranger to pain, so his response to an invitation to participate in the annual Seattle to Portland ride long ago was telling. “If I want to be miserable,” he said, “all I have to do is put a piece of sandpaper in my shorts, have my wife squirt me with the hose, and ride around the block a few times.”

This post by Brett Lindstrom, national/international sales manager of Speedplay, was in response to this recent story.

Well, I guess it’s time to face the sobering reality… it’s Megan Tompkins’ last week at BRaIN.

Lance’s impact on the bike industry is as controversial as his alleged drug use. With all the recent chatter and analysis, let’s correct some of the revisionist history being spun.

For once Ray I'll disagree with something you've written. There are a number of reasons your argument that racing doesn't sell bikes doesn't hold water:

Sometimes, in a weak moment,  I imagine getting back into the trade show business. Then I  remember the deaf sound man and come to my senses. 

Boulder launched its B-Cycle bike share program last Friday. I was lucky to be one of the 100 folks riding the bikes from downtown to their dozen destination racks around town.

Leaning hard into a decreasing radius turn on my ancient Schwinn Paramount, I ponder the effectiveness of thirty year-old sew-up glue.  A failed tire can kill you. Changing one can, too. Bitter experience has taught me to regard  every decision about tires, however insignificant, as a matter of life or death.

I slept with Yoshi Shimano. Airline computers, those prankster accomplices of fate, had assigned us adjoining seats in the sold-out business class of an Alitalia red-eye going from L.A. to Milan. It was more togetherness than either one of us would have preferred, but we made the best of it.

Sitting in the doughnut shop enjoying a chocolate old-fashioned and a black coffee, I was reading the paper and glancing up occasionally at my Cook Brothers Cruiser leaned against the wall outside.  Unencumbered by a lock, it was only ten feet away from me, although a window and a wall were between us. As it happened, I wasn’t its only admirer. A tough looking young guy approached from the sidewalk, keeping a purposeful eye on the bike as he stopped and rolled up the right cuff on his jeans. He was a stride away from the bike when he made eye contact with me through the window. In that instant of recognition, I’m sure he was asking himself, “Can that old dude get out of the chair and through the door, before I can get a leg over the bike and put a couple of turns of the pedals between us?”

Birthdays are dangerous for impulse buyers. My most recent one found me shivering in the alcove entryway at Elliott Bay Bicycles in downtown Seattle, waiting for them to open. A bitter February wind was blowing in off the Sound. An empty sixteen ounce malt liquor can rattled around at my feet. When Bob Freeman rode up on his classic Schwinn Paramount to open the store, he seemed surprised to see me huddled there by the front door. “It’s not mine,” I said when he glanced down at the empty can. “I haven’t had a drink in over a year,” I continued, sounding exactly like the kind of righteous jerk I was afraid of becoming when I quit. “Stumbling around in a hopeless fog of sobriety is no picnic,” I added, hoping to lighten the mood, as he unlocked the door.

I came to Rivendell like a refugee, dragging my belongings behind me in a red roller borrowed from my wife.  A January fugitive from Seattle, I was seeking sunlight and perhaps a bit of enlightenment.  Having taken the BART train directly from SFO to Walnut Creek, I dodged SUV's while jaywalking across busy suburban streets.  Whenever I extended my stride, the roller would bounce off my heel and go into a Dutch roll, trying to twist out of my grasp.

In its own independent and disorderly way, Berkeley is a great bike town.

The $15mm Man Or Maam

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