Thursday, June 30, 2005

Pimp my fahrrad

Most u-35 Americans are familiar with MTV's hit show "Pimp My Ride", which is an "I want/gimme" genre show for 14 year olds who are looking forward to their first cars. (MTV seems to have quite a few "I want/gimme" shows. How about some "let's help others and not be selfish" shows. Right, we're talking about American teens and the advertisers who court them...)

Anyway, in Deutchland, it seems people are happy with bikes. Good for them. Good for them.

So, check this. "Pimp my Fahrrad" is a cross between "Ride" and "Monster Garage". Visit their site to check out the video clips and photo gallery.

Also, here's the definition of Fahrrad via Wikipedia.

Of course, successful MTV franchises like the original "Pimp" help pimp out the schedule in other countries, with adjustments for cultural variances.

Here's another example: the Italian version called "Pimp my Wheels", cuz once again, in many places there are a hellavalotta more Vespas and Moto Guzzis and other shit than cars.

Commute report

miles when i got to work: 1812.3

last night's dessert: big ass scoop of ice cream. doh. this needs to be my last scoop for at least a month!

on my ride: the smog is just terrible; they're resurfacing the mile-long hill that i take on the way to work. they couldn't have done this sooner. it's pothole city. they made quick work of one side of the street yesterday and they're starting on the other side today. what's neat is that there's a base of bricks that must have been the "pavers" back in the day. they stripped down to this layer before putting on the new blacktop. i sometimes wish they'd leave all the old streets as brick.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

commute report

miles when i got to work: 1803.8

what i forgot: my shoes to go with my suit. oops. thanks husband. you're the greatest ever and don't you forget it.

bugmobile: my bike needs another scrubbing thanks to the splattered bug action. yes, putting your bike on the roof and then driving 6 hours in the summertime tends to enhance the splattage.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Commute report

Miles when I got to work: 1795.4

Early bird: After a 5 a.m. yoga class, I returned home, ate some granola and...fell asleep. Nice job, me.

Of interest: I am finally sipping the water on my way to work, now that summertime temps have kicked in.

Monday, June 27, 2005

commute report

miles when i got to work: 1786.9

dessert eaten last night: hot fudge cake from frisch's. mmmmm good.

outfit worn to work: black hearts terry jersey with black cycling shorts and sidi shoes (and backpack full of today's clothes and shoes, today's lunch)

Saturday, June 25, 2005

ride report

just got home from ye olde college town, 3 hours to the east.

was in ye olde college town to speak, but that got messed up, so at least i was able to hang out with friends, drink, and eat (twice!) at my favorite restaurant in ye olde college town.

i also got to take a ride on the new rails-to-trails path, which ends about 15 miles away in a neighboring town.

that town's center, i'm happy to report, has improved from its rural post-industrial depression and blossomed into an artsy-fartsy enclave catering to tourists.

we tooled around, popped in and out of artsy shops and stopped by the organic coffeehouse/lunch spot for some caloric happiness. i was bummed that there weren't more tourists, because they were really missing out.

back to the trail...the ride itself was mondo flat, and included an old company town (i love ghost towns and stuff like this). a canopy of deciduous trees made the high 80's much more bearable. the trail was paved and totally fresh, no tree roots bursting through the blacktop. fallen trees had been carefully moved out of the path. there were hardly any LEAVES on the trail.

the trail's flatness was especially wild because the area is full of beautiful foothills. nonetheless, it was good to check out the trail and we'll have to head to the hills next time.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

unridden bike blues

i did not ride today
no, baby, i did not ride today
i was down yonder in tenn-uh-see-ee-yay

'stead i rode on a plane
'stead i rode on a plane
stepped foot on that metal bird and flied away

my wild week is nearly over. then i will find time to do such stuff as write thank you notes, rsvp to stuff, read, see relatives and finally, ride.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

did-not-ride report

drove today, sad to say. bike won't see the light of day till saturday.

that's a bad rhyme. is that a crime?

Monday, June 20, 2005

Non-ride report

I didn't ride today. I think I could have, but I didn't. I am sorta pissed that I didn't, since I will be out of town Thursday and Friday and have to drive to a symposium up north on Tuesday.

Riding in the car today was totally boring and the weather was nice to boot. Damn.

Have been reading The Immortal Class. Bless my library and the Internet-based intralibrary loan system.

Also on the topic of couriers, read diary of a courier.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

saturday report

thursday's report was eaten; friday, i didn't post.

right now: listening to some catchy song by keane on vh1

plans for today: library, pedicure if i can get an appointment, meeting with lauren about our maine trip, visit grandma, think of father's day gift, bone up for tuesday's mind-busting thing

now on vh1: i don't watch these channels often, and what i'm finding is so damn confusing. eminem is singing some "doiiing, doiiing, doiiing" song with triumph the insult dog while puppets from crank yankers act out the scenes. too much convergence people! it's forced by agents! i can't take it! speaking of watching TV, big screen TV folks apparently have SUVs of energy usage. those TVs make your power bills skyrocket. all i have to say is a hearty HA HA HA!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

commute report

miles when i got home (because i forgot to check when i got to work because i was swamped, damnit!): 1710.4

for all of you who ride the same route daily: you know when you run over the same piece of trash several days in a row? no? i'm the only idiot out there? y'all have daily street cleanings? great.

it's not like i'm running over a teeny, tiny piece of metal that could puncture my tire. instead, it's some random, harmless hunk that's obscured by the shade. for example, that damn coat hanger i ran over like 100 days in a row and kept meaning to stop and throw on the sidewalk but never did.

what's odd is i go around most crap, like the puddle of safety glass squares when someone's car window is broken out, or potholes (the kind my husband insists on riding right through for no good reason). i'm really careful there, but then there's that damn wire coathanger...

other objets d' road: a big old rusty bolt that could be/was part of a car or something. it's on the big hill and i keep meaning to throw that on the sidewalk too.

other roadkill: some brown wingtips (dress shoes). in about 2 days they went from simply sitting in the middle of the road (one in one lane, one in the other) to PANCAKED -- shiny and not a scratch on them but completely flat. now (day 5, i think) they're starting to get scratched up a bit.

question for you: what's the oddest thing you've seen/run over while on your bike recently?

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

commute report

miles when i got to work today: 1697.3

today's photo: from a google image search, as usual. it's WACKY, even though it's from a scientific article on insulin resistance. if you're interested in the article, click on the image for further information on insulin resistance, which is apparently "the hallmark of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus."

of interest: it was smoggy. ick. couldn't find clean jersey so wore dirty one. ick.

getting back into yoga, again: sweated like a pig in yesterday's class and felt great. going to yoga again today, damnit.

storms and "damaging hale" expected: hope that doesn't stop my plan to ride home.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Did not ride report

Used the (eek!!) car today to haul a week's worth of clothes to work. Rode plenty this weekend, though. So there.

Friday, June 10, 2005

commute report

miles when i got to work: 1637.7

of interest: my honey was with me today. he rode all the way to work with me and then turned around, went home, got ready and went along with his day. how sweet is he?!?!

also of interest: we rode through the college campus, and it was all dressed up. today's graduation day, you see. i will be sad once school is over because my cut through campus will be quiet, although it's not like the college types were usually awake at 7:30 in the a-m anyway.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

You may be a bike weenie if...

I love these kinds of lists. Here's a link to "You may be a bike weenie if..." from the Charles River Wheelmen.

commute report

perhaps i should change the title of my commuting posts to 'commute report'. that would make more sense.

mileage when i got to work: 1629.3

hot and muggy?: yes

smooshed animals avoided: 1

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

ride report

About the image: Found it and liked it, especially the mouse on the wheel. No, I'm not exhausted; it's just a cute pic.

miles when i got to work: 1615.2

Scenes from a crime: I'm glad on days like today that my mom doesn't know the address of this blog, for overnight, in the "bad" neighborhood where the drivers are definitely more polite and the street scene is vibrant, there was a homicide.

To be more specific, a guy was killed outside a house while his girlfriend looked on. Sure, you might chalk such things up to gangs and their turf wars but we've all heard about the stray bullets and innocent victims, too.

As I pedaled along, I either created in my head (possible) or felt a sense of tension in the neighborhood. Mornings are fairly quiet in the neighborhood, so I didn't see many people, but I did see a preacher talking with some concerned 40-ish residents. They seemed to be talking about what happened, piecing together the details, and, I imagine, working on keeping the neighborhood calm after this (most recent) tragedy.

The good news is that there've been no outdoor gun battles since I've been riding the route. There's plenty of good news about the neighborhood, actually. The sights, the smells, the kind drivers, the fun to ride hills. The bad news is that this neighborhood is decaying and has been for years.

My family used to live in this neighborhood decades before I was born. I can see how it used to be exciting and vibrant in a much more respectful way. In a way, riding through this neighborhood, I am hoping to gentrify it, make it all better, just like some of the remaining businesses, like the furniture store that blares country music in the mornings to repel the thugs.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

ride report

miles when i got to work today: 1606.7

of interest: not as humid as yesterday morning

annoyed: (not well thought out rant) i've had it with the people who are like "DOWN WITH CARS. CARS ARE DUMB. I HATE CARS." the propaganda is quite cute and fun and usually has adorable images of chairman mao and i do get caught up in it sometimes, but it totally misses the point, as much angst usually does. shoot, i have a car and i love it. do i pointlessly ride to the grocery store just because my car has three cupholders? no. i usually walk, thank you. do i live in a suburb where you are enclosed by 1,800 plastic houses and you can't walk to anything but another one of the 1,800 houses? no way. but do i love my car? yes! i can use it to take road trips. (would i prefer to be good to the earth and ride my bike on a road trip? yes, but i wouldn't ordinarily have the time to bike to {insert faraway place}.) i can use it to get something on the way other side of town at the last minute {i'd prefer to ride a subway or a niceish bus but don't have that option.} i am down with the cars-r-coffins for my own reasons, like they pollute and they have made this society nuts, and i agree that people should bike more and ride less and not be assholes who run over cyclists. that's all good, but cars are not bad, damnit. thank you.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Like a fish, er, dog needs a bicycle

I've always wanted to pedal with my dog pal. Now, I can, thanks to the Palomino Dog Bicycle.

It's only 45.990 yen (about $430 USD), not including shipping, if indeed they ship to the states.

Here's a priceless pic of a puppy passenger.

I do wonder what the "Stylish Bicycle" looks like. If it's the art deco-looking machine on the main page, I want one!

ride report

miles when i got to work: 1580.6

friends seen on the ride: one, keith, who had worked up a sweat during his morning run

dead animals: one, a stiff-as-a-board tree rat that i also saw on the way to work friday

Sunday, June 05, 2005

cutest soigneur ever

well george is not as cute as toby, but he's definitely cute.

george is the team dog/puppy cheerleader/soigneur of the Blue Ribbon Cycling team in NY. if he's anything like toby, i'm sure he does a terrific job.

(on a totally unrelated note, i love how fixed gear gallery puts a little "female symbol" next to the ladies' bikes. i check those out first!)

ratting my bangs...not

check out this chicago group, the rat patrol.

this site has lovely photos in addition to in-depth info about the ratter's activities.

speaking of 'ratted' stuff, i was a judge for a hot rod division of a car a few weeks ago, as i do every year. great fun that is.

anyway, there were definitely more rat rods at the car show this year than last and the numbers keep building. the art of hot rod cars is definitely becoming more diverse.

so what's a rat rod car? well, if ZZ Top's hot rod in the Legs video was more classic hot rod, a rat rod is the opposite - intentionally finished with primer and not a clear coat, and plenty of funky touches like devil-shaped tail lights.

je ne veux pas HUMMER

here we have a photo of french cyclists waiting for the hummer store to open. they pooled their money to buy one! okay, just kidding, this was a joint project of velorution and the church of the consumption.

here's more info on the protest.

also, check out car free france and, if you're in paris on the 1st saturday of the month, join the velorution!

bike report

miles when i got home today: 1574.2

screw the icebox, i've put the frozen food on my loose appendages.

i'm really glad winter has given way to...summer. why the hell is it a humid 88 degrees today and where's my goddamn pool? (okay i really don't want a pool - liability, baby - but i wouldn't mind a neighbor with one.)

upon stepping outside, i can actually feel my pores change from F16 to F2.

we rode over to a yummy diner about 6 miles away to meet my cousin for breakfast. i liked my omlette, potato cakes and english muffin.

saw many bikers, we passed some and some passed us. discussed the sweat-inducing heat with a skinny ass biker at a red light.

that's another nice thing about riding a bike; when do you exchange pleasantries with the drivers of other cars?

Friday, June 03, 2005

bike report

mileage when i got to work: 1527.7

of interest: like a dumbass, i wore a SWEATSHIRT. i thought it felt a bit nippy, then two miles into my ride, thanks to the humidity, i felt like a giant sponge. i was late for work and hit lots of greens or reds w/o traffic, so i didn't want to stop and take off the sweatshirt, stuff it in my backpack, etc.

looking forward to the weekend: would like to take a ride up to ye olde college town for a sweet backroads ride + yummy lunch. we'll see what happens.

photos: as i mentioned before, i'm reluctant to reveal my identity, so i don't want to link to any photos on my own site. therefore, i've decided to link to photos from other sites. i know this is bad form, but it's not like my blog gets much traffic in the first place...if i get any complaints from the photo owners, i'll remove the images.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

ride report

miles when i got to work: 1516.2

of interest: riding quickly to work

other: had a nice ride last night on our local bike trail