Friday, July 29, 2011

may your bikey starfish stay warm

hopefully your bikey weekend travels take you somewhere scenic, similar to where the tall one and i went during memorial day weekend.


or, in the alternative, at least make you very tired and trying to stay warm in the little sunshine that is left at the end of the day. these were my riding partners after alpine loop one day.

mill valley, full-bellied starfish

enjoy this weekend everyone! life is beautiful.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Setting Priorities

Kids who grow up on bicycles just grow up differently.

Beer Cuddle Panda

Hey! Don't judge! The kid is smart enough to know that the beer is way better to cuddle than some silly bear.

Happy Wednesday! Have a beer!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Episode 1- David and Goliath

After Todd's little lesson the other day, I got the chance to watch Hubby the Bikeman in action. On our way to Half Moon Bay State Beach we were sidelined by a flat. The funny thing about it was it happened on the wide, relatively clean shoulder of Highway 1 and not on the roughly 1000 foot climb over rocks, thorns and tree ruts it took to get there (more on that next time).

Not Quite A Spanner

That tiny little wire, most likely from a car tire's steel belting, was what took out a Schwalbe Big Apple tire. It was so small it was almost completely buried in the rubber of the tread and took two of us to dig out.

James was going to just replace the tube, but I pointed out we were in no hurry so why waste a perfectly good tube? Especially if there was a possibility that there could be more wire shards in the tire. Because he was riding the Xtracycle (we had to ask to borrow it from our son now that it is his) and it was pretty loaded with gear, we didn't want to take the wheel off.

Tiny Hole

The hole in the tube was tiny so James had to put some spit on it to see if air bubbles would form to make sure this was the hole (the tiny bit of wire sticking out of the tire was not visible and only just exposed enough to be able to feel it with a finger). With the hole found, and patched and the offensive wire pushed, prodded and finally dug out of the tire with my Leatherman scissors, the tire went back on the wheel.

Check It

James is truly Hubby the Bikeman, King of the Flat Tire and All Around Good Guy. And I? What am I? I am fortunate to be able to lie down on the warm pavement and take pictures while James does the hard work! Yep, I am lazy. Although my camera is quite heavy.

Rest Mode

Coast Rider

Leave Them Where They Lie

Always In The Background

We were back on the road in about 15 minutes. No biggie. A nice chance to sit back for a bit, listen to some music and breath the lovely ocean air. Just part of the bicycle touring experience which almost always manages to mix something great with something not so great.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Bike Love

Bike camping makes you look like this

22 years

More to come!

credit where credit is due: go el lay!!

just so you know i don't hate on el lay. the mama texican showed me a link yesterday to an article that describes the most progressive law i've seen concerning bikes and drivers.

the new law makes it a crime for drivers to threaten cyclists verbally or phyiscally. as i was just harassed last week by a horrible and vindictive UPS driver for having the audacity to be already going on the turnaround when he wanted to go when he was stopped, i have to say this law is highly needed EVERYWHERE. (btw, i thought about chasing him, but then thinking of the grievance process and the fact that they are unionized, etc made me wonder what the most effective way to complain about/mentally kick his ass it is...i'm still waiting for the brilliant idea to pop into my head...i have one idea, but is not quick)

the LA times says...

The ordinance, which backers described as the toughest of its kind in the nation, makes it a crime for drivers to threaten cyclists verbally or physically, and allows victims of harassment to sue in civil court without waiting for the city to press criminal charges. (emphasis via the CTX)

read more about it at the link above. and WAY TO GO EL LAY!

HT to the mama texican.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

rest in peace

the first bike/car collision in SF this year to result in a death happened yesterday.

we at the blog have had a rather strange year as far as crazy senseless tragedies go, so my heart goes out to her friends, family, co-workers, and the bikey community in general.

she was biking so close to where i used to work...

a streetsblog commenter said something rather fitting and touching about this incident. the cyclist allegedly took an illegal left hand turn and that is when she collided with a truck.

The first word of Ho’s death came on Streetsblog last night, when a friend decided to respond to some critical comments:

“Some of you guys speak so heartlessly as if we deserve to die for any mistake we make. Well… my friend made a mistake and she passed away tonight at the hospital. Grow a heart.”

she was 25 years old. rest in peace.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Flat, Again! or, I Always Wanted To Carry A Bike In My Basket.

You are riding along. All is well in the world. Suddenly, there is that sound. The sound that comes just before your steering gets wonky. Fsst. Fsst. Fsst. Flat. In the daylight, when it isn't raining and the fact that you left your repair kit at home isn't a big deal because there is a bike shop 5 blocks away, this is just a minor inconvenience. At night, when it is raining and maybe the beer tasting was a little too tasty and you don't have a repair kit... you may just have to lock up your bike and call a cab to get you home. Even when you own your own bike shop. Todd Fahrner of Clever Cycles had just this issue. So after locking his trusty Oma up, and leaving her his rain hat to keep the seat dry, Todd came back the next day with his Brompton to fix the damage and get back on the road.


Now, that rear tire is the flat one. It has a full chain case and internal hub and fenders... so he can't repair it without removing the wheel. Right? Wrong! Not only could he do it, Todd took pictures for all of us to learn from.


"See how the center double stand holds the rear wheel off the ground? This makes it super easy to work on said wheel. No center stand? Lay the bike on it's side. Insert tire lever under bead to pry tire off. Note dog turd in background: more center stand win."


"Prying off the tire bead."


"Since I didn't find glass/nail/staple/tack or other obvious culprit stuck in the tire casing, I fished out the whole tube. If I had found the culprit, I'd have needed only to remove the underlying section of tube."


"Lightly pumping up the tube creates a hiss whose source I found here. Smaller holes harder to find. Pump more and hold close to sensitive skin/ear."


Abrade well around hole. Idea is to expose clean, black, non-oxidized rubber for the vulcanizing fluid to react with over the whole patch area. Mold seams must go. Lots of people don't abrade enough, then say that patches don't work


"Apply THIN layer of vulcanizing fluid, a little larger than the patch. Tip from Joe Breeze: use the crimped edge of the fluid tube as a squeegee to remove all but a film of the fluid. More fluid is not better. press all the air out of the fluid tube before you re-cap it so it won't dry out. no sniffing!"


"After waiting until the vulcanizing fluid is DRY (about 5 minutes), apply the patch, center to center. The fluid is not a glue (which bonds when wet), but a surface preparation that is complete when dry. Press well. I leave the plastic backing on so the prepped part of the tube won't bind to the tire casing, and so the patch doesn't stretch with the rest of the tube, possibly stressing the repair. And because I'm lazy.

This is the 4th patch on this particular tube. Very serious time and money savings over paying a shop to replace the tube ever dang time! Replace the tube when there's no more room for patches. The Dunlop valve favored in the Netherlands remains popular there because the valve seal can be replaced independently of the tube, again without removing the wheel, so a tube's life can extend to decades."


"The location of the puncture in the tube tipped me off to the location of the hole in the tire. Looks like glass cut, then fell out. It is important always to figure out what caused the puncture and assess whether it's still a problem, or it will likely just go flat again."


"Patched and pumped. Ready to roll"


"Brommie fits in basket. Do you have a bike small enough for your basket, or a basket big enough for your bike?

And then we rode to work."

While it may take a little practice, you too can repair your flat tires! Now, if you want to take the whole thing to the next level and then carry your Brompton home on your front rack, I suggest you talk to Todd. He is the Brompton King.

Thank you so much for letting us share, Todd!! I hope to see you soon!

Monday, July 18, 2011 not just one weekend in el lay

so i'm sure you all have heard by now that our suspicion was confirmed. bikes are faster than planes.

you're welcome.

and i'm also sure that you all know that the real story of this airplane v. bike race is not the race itself, but rather the attention that needs to be paid to a city that does not have adequate public transportation as well as misguided perceptions on what transportation has to be.

even though wolfpack hustle did an awesome thing, i think a stronger statement could have been made in if everyday people (aka NOT strong riders) on their bikes also rode the 40 miles. if this happened, btw, i missed it in my reading of the coverage, so please share in the comments.

oh, and JUST IN CASE you were wondering. carmaggedon did NOT deter the laker girl tryouts!!! omg you guyssssssssss!

please go to la times's site for all things carmaggedon. have a nice day. sun is shining here in SF and am enjoying the view from my bike saddle.

Friday, July 15, 2011

#carmaggedon v. bikes

heh, i totally knew something like this was gonna go down in el lay this weekend!

why? because it's something i would love to do myself!

bike commute news says:
The Wolfpack Hustle, one of L.A.'s most skilled and experienced cycling groups, is challenging JetBlue Airlines to a race from Burbank to Long Beach.

heh. i can't wait to see what the results are.

happy weekend riding everyone, no matter where you are in the world!

btw, if you are like me and plan on cycling across that CLUSTERF*!k that is the golden gate bridge bike/ped mixed crossing this weekend, please take a minute to air your grievances to the SFBC. they are collecting them so we can try to make the next couple of months better for both cyclists AND pedestrians who are trying to cross the bridge.

HT to KT!

UPDATE: jet blue agrees to race. those media savvy folks!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

LA carmaggedon, jet blue style

oh how i wish i thought of that mashup in words. but i didn't. you know who brought it to my attention? jet blue.


well, during my recent trip to LA, LA let me and thousands of other freeway drivers know that the 405 (the notoriously gnarly and constantly congested LA freeway), is going to be closed soon for construction during the weekend of july 16/17.

where most LA citizens and visitors may see "oh shit," jet blue sees dollar signs. they had an offer going for $4 flights over el lay. i've actually joked about doing that in the past to friends that live in van nuys v. long beach, but whoa. they are actually doing it.

thinking of this silliness made me think of the LA midnight ridazz/crimanimals and their bikey take over the freeways awhile back.

we'll see what they do this weekend ;)

oh, btw, the $4 publicity stunt/promotion is SOLD OUT. i know yr cryin' from your bike seat, right?

via gizmodo

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

video: ramona's one minute ride

ms. wheelright, over at velo vogue and at wheelright, managed to be at the right place at the right time today to take some awesome spur of the moment footage of bombing a hill in SF with a bunch of bmx bikers.

this hill is part of my new commute. sometimes times i bomb it, other times it terrifies me, so i have to really congratulate her on the ability to capture this footage! you go grrrl!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Happy Trails

My route was a happy place this weekend.

Couples Skate

The road was shared,

Nice Thoughts For The Road

and there were positive affirmations. Now we can all get on with Monday.

Friday, July 8, 2011

skuut it up!

a couple of months back we went on a S240 (more on that later), and we were refueling on "sports drinks," when this lil bikey badarse came riding near us with his dad. check out how personalized his skuut is!

personalized skuut

believe you me, this kid is gonna be incredible in whatever bikey sport he chooses.

there's way more of this lil one on the net, and this is just a preview of what there is to come. here's also a teeny tiny video i took of him.

again, this is just a preview. more on this once and future king to come.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

oldest way to get around town...

i love this picture. we were hanging out on sunday streets in the mission a couple of months ago, and we found ourselves needing to go somewhere that was more efficient to travel by bike than by walking. our friend here didn't have a bike. the tall one has a large bike frame with extra space and the thigh muscles to match. yours truly had the know-how and suggested they do the below.

pre public bike!

how cute. old friends, old way to get around town. now she has her own bike with fancy and friendly friends showing her how to ride. so awesome. much love!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


It is Wednesday. The sun is out in San Francisco. Friday is a long way off. Take comfort, the bike life continues and will be there when you return.

I Gotta Wheel, You Gotta Tattoo

Gwen & Mr Peanut

Bicycles Everywhere

Meet Up

Look Over There

Monday, July 4, 2011

Weird Science

I love my cargo bike.

Damn, They're Heavy!

The usual weekend bicycle combo in the house is me on the Bat and James on La Baillena.

Schleppe Pair

Like all things we love, La Baillena has some quirks. One of these quirks is very strange. Perhaps someone out there can enlighten me as to its origin.

My cargo bike, at times, generates enough static electricity that it shocks me! If the conditions are right (and I am not completely sure of what all those conditions are) I get shocked through both hands and my inner thigh where it contacts the saddle (if I am wearing something short enough to allow any skin to touch it). The shock is enough to cause a lot of pain and for me to reflexively let go of the handlebars. It always happens when I ride down a particular hill and is worse if I have a significant load, so I know the brakes have something to do with it.

Leg Powered

This picture was taken just before the first time it happened. I tried to explain it to James, but he wasn't sure of what I meant. That is until it happened to him the other day. He came home from a quick trip to the market and told me he now knew exactly what I meant. That's when we came up with the possibility that it is static electricity that is the problem.

Has anyone out there ever experienced this? If so, what did you do about it?

Sunday, July 3, 2011

scenes from long beach

no bike. two girls and a truck. only had these things to guide me along.

we stayed in long beach. went on a walk. this is some of what i saw.

this one is my personal favorite.

happy sunday!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Bike My Beer

You go for a ride, you have a beer. While this may not be true for you, it is for the 98 out of a hundred other people that rode around you. In the past, if you were one of those 98 people in Portland, you would have to ride your bike to a place with beer to make this inevitable combination of events happen. Not anymore!

Loaded for Beer!

Welcome Beer Bike 2.0 by Metrofiets! After the amazing response they got to their first beer bike for Hopworks, the boys decided that maybe it was time they had their own! Two kegs, two taps, fully self contained, with music system on board.

The best thing about it? You can rent it and make your party soooo much bikier! Delivered to you (as long as you are within peddling distance of it in the first place), picked up and cleaned so that all you have to do is plug in your keg of choice.

sunny day keg_03

Throw a little hors d'ouvres spread on the top, get your bike gang to swing by your place and it is on!

ride test_wtih Ella_2
all photos courtesy of Metrofiets

And should the need arise, you could have a little kid transport added to the mix.