Thursday, February 26, 2009

Big Bike Love

We've been bingeing on DVDs of HBO's Big Love, the great cable show about a polygamist family; a man and his three wives.

Tricia pointed out I'm a bicycle polygamist with three bikes.
So, of course, we started trying to decide which bike corresponded to which of Bill's wives.

I said the Fixed gear was Margene, because it's young and hip, like her. Nikki is the commuter bike because Nikki knows how to work and handle the grunt work. My Kestrel should be Barb, because it, and she, are good for the long haul.

Tricia had a different take. The commuter bike is Barb because Barb is reliable, and equipped to handle the load. Bill can always turn to Barb, she'll get him through whatever comes along.

Nikki is the fixed gear. She has her own beauty. It's a sparse and simple beauty, but beauty none the less. She does, however, take some getting used to. She has pretty basic needs, but like a flat on the rear wheel of a fixed gear, she has her own special maintenance issues.

Margene is the Kestrel, because your road bike makes you feel young, fast and exciting, and reminds you why you love to ride your bike. A lot. And the drop bars provide a variety of positions.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Tour of California prologue 2009

Tyler Hamilton of Rock Racing and a fanboy on the right.

The Tour of California prologue was cold, windy and totally amazing. Tricia and I almost took our bikes, but it looked like rain so we ended up being pedestrians. You can read all about the tour on a zillion blogs and news sites. I've been going to Versus TV, and the

But here's what it was like to be there: I've never seen so many bicycles and riders. The teams park trailers on side streets near the start. You can walk up and watch them warm up on bike stands that hold their bikes. You can oogle their equipment. I got to see that Rock Racing rides Kestrel bikes like mine, only they do it faster. Some teams hand out posters and other swag. It's amazing to be so close.

There's a large "Lifestyle Fair" near the start,which is really a lot of mostly bike-oriented booths that ether have cool stuff on display, or are selling cycling stuff. We couldn't resist the great deals at the Hincapie booth, and ended up with a jacket and some shorts.

As much fun as it is to watch cycling gods zoom past, it's impossible to know exactly what's going on. I took my daughter's iPod touch hoping to get a wi-fi signal so I could keep up, but it didn't work. So near the end we found a brew pub and watched on TV, where we could see the whole course and know what the times were.

After the race we went to a restaurant for a meetup with cycling bloggers. We got to meet many of the people whose blogs I follow. David of the Fredcast, Fritz of Cyclelicious, and Jonathan Tessler from It was very cool to find out the people I read and listen to have actual faces and drink beer.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Red tires, baby

Red tires on my fixed gear

No big deal, but I got red tires, and even red cable ends for my fixed gear bike. Click to view this photo at a size large enough actually see the red tires and general fine-a-tude of the bike.
I'm starting to like it this fixed thing. I think. I swapped the 18 tooth rear cog for a 17, which feels more natural.
Today I rode it 22 miles with Tricia and a group from Bike Forums. I don't know that I'll ever become a fixed gear zen guy, but I am feeling more comfortable all the time.