Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Game plan

A burgeoning relationship with bicycles rapidly assumes a form quite different than other machines that one may deal with on a regular basis. Refrigerators aren't entertaining, can-openers can't increase your physical prowess, and when was the last time a group of friends each met with their blenders in tow to just hang out and crush ice in the park? I can't remember the last time I emptied the crumb tray in my toaster oven, but I can tell you that I meticulously sponged off my cross bike at least twice already this week. Indeed, cycling becomes a sort of unique person-on-machine love affair. While bike riding can't keep you warm at night, like a new love it can give you butterflies in your stomach, increase your sense of well being, and even set your crotch ablaze (for better or worse).

But when the spontaneity and excitement that originally lured you dwindles, it can be increasingly difficult to find excuses to avoid real-life commitments and dedicate ample time towards building your relationship. As with the unfortunately reality of modern existence, planning and scheduling become important tools to adequately allocate apropos temporal portions towards bike practice. Dually unfortunate for me has been the abandonment of my life philosophy of remaining perpetually yet delightfully ill-prepared. With school and work and family and a truly absurd (and likely unprecedented) number of friends and social engagements to tend to, I have acquiesced to the superiority of premeditation.

While perhaps not as queasily unromantic as penciling-in sexual encounters in advance, I do believe one should remain cautiously apprehensive towards over-planing a ride schedule. Most obviously one has to incorporate some flexibility for the weather, however it is also important that one remain flexible enough to account for family emergencies, impending schoolwork, drops in motivation, holidays, mood swings, full moons, and of course: seasonal insects and bird migrations.
Currently my ride schedule remains uncomplicated yet dedicated, with my planner looking something like this:

Friday: Go on bike ride

Tuesday: Maybe go on ride (if doesn't rain)

Sunday: Ride???

I give you this intimate glimpse into my training not to boast, but so you will see that the possibility doing something 1-3 times a week is in fact rather serious. And perhaps that you will know why on Fridays I smell kinda bad.

Now that I've exposed my sole planner to give you this example, like playgound show-n-tell I believe is now time to show me yours.

Happy riding!

(Flappy riding-->)

Monday, October 20, 2008

Carry on.

Often I am asked to fully explain the duties, designations, and dimensions of my life-changing creations in order to convince interested parties to confidently abandon thirty-five hardish-earned U.S. Dollars. I don't even blame them for their hesitancy, as 35$ now is more like 47$ was five years ago, and is at least six or seven Euros today; not a measly sum one would like to see squandered on non-essential goods. While I do believe my productions are ultimately beneficial and that everyone I know should own a minimum of two, I am realistic in knowing that no matter how mouthwatering my material marsupiums may be, they remain inedible and unlikely to appease even the most fashion-forward of landlords.

Here I will describe with photographic aids, what precisely one may carry inside of a Camp Cupboard© fanny pack hip-bag lock holster pouch (©,©,®†©®,†, respectively).

Primarily, these pouches are produced for varying velocipede powered individuals. Like flat-kit carting bike kids:

(Easily fits a tube, patch kit, mini pump, levers, wallet, keys, phone)

Or if you prefer ample spandex and Bike paths, and thus toe the line closer to the roadie persuasion:

(Pack your science food to combat low electrolytes, sunglasses to combat high UV rays, and cell phone to get a car ride home in case of a "mechanical", etc.)

Or if you prefer to merely roll on over to your favourite café and brush up on Française whilst drawing on fags and penning poetic ponderance in a Céline-inspired moleskin notebook:
(Disclaimer: poetry is unhealthy)

Or maybe you're a raw-food freegan and just want to bring your tall-bike over to to your friends' dumpstered potluck impowerment pow-wow picnic:
(Room for book, recycled bunny bookmark, and snacks)

Whatever your purposes or plans, just know if it's smaller than 8x3 inches, it will probably fit in a Camp Cupboard pouch-which will no doubt radically improve your romantic success, standard of living and general disposition.*

I also now have an ETSY shop, which you should go to and spend 35-40 of these: $

*unsubstantiated claims

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Slop Meat

In the various and varied arenas of my life, one theme continually arises. While at first guess you may assume that theme to be "endless and unimaginable genius", in fact it is closer to "constant and insufferably inadequate forethought". To combat my tiresome and decidedly square life, I've concocted a methodology of unpreparedness which keeps everything new and exciting enough for my exceptionally small attention span to grasp. I approach every endeavor equally: lacking expectations, hopes, desires, or plans. While others with my predisposition may readily adopt a low expectation method, having zero expectations has a two-fold advantage: boredom and disappointment are impossible. Low expectations merely guard against disappointment; zero expectations ensure that every instance of every day is unexpected, and thus exciting enough to pursue with my characteristic daring enthusiasm (which by now, you have no doubt begun to know and love).

Last Saturday I attended my very first cycling-related swap meet; I even brought some bags with me in case the patrons were of the accessorizing sort. As I entered with zero expectations, I was relatively unphased when I sold exactly zero* bags. However as I also had zero concept of the magnitude and absurd-itude of this gathering, i spent most of the day overwhelmed and aimless. Thousands of people were ambling about with about as much purpose as I had expectations, with seemingly as many tables selling the ends, outs, after-thoughts, over-stocks, and even dirty laundry (in the form of polyester pique cycling jerseys from 1972) of the cycling industry.

Compared with the masses of old bike dudes selling masses of old bike thingys, my wares were somewhat out of place; this explained their uncommon unpopularity. Yet I was immune to disappointment, and while my day was lacking in funds it surly wasn't lacking in funs. I got to wo-man the table that my shop set up for a bit and hang out with my adorably hungover co-workers, where I proudly exhibited my newest batch of of liberty bell pouches to uninterested yet friendly parties. I took breaks to wander, idle, fiddle, and fidget my way through the cycling-stuff-smorgasbord. I made just one purchase, a pair of tights from the most fashionable decade of athletic-wear (the 80s).

I also met Taliah Lempert, the artist who does the thing that you wish you thought of first (she paints bicycles!). She was sweetly sympathetic to my lack of sales and let me trade her a pouch for one of her bicycle print shirts.
As nothing really sold, I have on hand a gaggle of new bags which can be yours, dear reader- for a mere 35$. I lovingly took group photographs for your viewing pleasure. If you are sufficiently tantalized, email me.

*Trades don't count. Also, I did sell one to my co-worker, but I'm not counting that, either.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Swapping Spit

When you preside over a major (albeit fake) design empire as I do, certain expectations are put upon you. People ask you to make them things, or to make them anything, or to re-make that thing you made before but better because it was kinda crappy at first. When these expectations are followed though, it carves a special place in the collective local psyche. Then you start to become a sort of local hero or minor celebrity, like a t.v. news anchor or someone well known because of a readily identifiable physical deformity.

People often ask me to show up places and sell things that I've made, and often enough I do so even without requests because I know If I don't preemptively tell everyone they will simply beg relentlessly anyhow. So to avoid the agony of actual human interaction I will declare my intentions to be physically present at Trexlertown on Saturday. Trexlertown (that's T-Town if you're nasty) is about an hour north of Philly and hosts a semi-annual bicycling swap meet at the Lehigh valley velodrome (or Valley Preferred Cycling Center, again if you're nasty). I have secret insider knowledge that scores, mobs, hoards, and gobs of cycling gear will be unloaded in a glorious haggling-friendly fashion from various local shops, and as such you, dear mid-atlantic-resident-cyclist-reader will likely benefit from a visit.

I cannot promise what I will bring to sell, because as with most local fake-design-empire-having almost-celebrities I have concurrent pressing matters and engagements to fulfil which may hinder my attempts at producing adequate pillage. I can say that I might have things to sell, and they will be life-changing and substantial; or I might simply perform a walk-though cameo to ensure elevation of estrogen levels throughout the arena. I may even shed my disdain for interaction and colloquial words and "hang out" with some "folks".

See you Saturday!