26 January 2015

T-Shirt of the Day

From Siskiyou Cyclery in Ashland, Oregon. Their Bike or Die shirt mimics the "Join or Die" campaign of 1765 that urged American colonists to junior against the British.

Contact them at (541)482-1997, or siskiyoucyclery.com of you would like one.

12 January 2015

Weeky Ramble

This is a common sight at my work. There are cable locks, and U-locks, on fences and racks all over the parking garage. They are stiff, and the plastic casing on the cables is weather-faded and cracking. There are layers of dust and grime on the locks from years of neglect. Some of these locks have been there longer than I have been commuting by bike.

In the years that I have commuted, I have never seen a bicycle locked up using these locks. I always wonder why they are abandoned? Are they the cast-off results of a failed new year's resolution or bike month challenge? Were the keys lost, or combinations forgotten? Did the owner ride his or her bike to work one day, only to decide that the effort was not worth the reward. Putting the bike away in the garage or shed, forgotten and unused as the locks they left behind?  The answer may never be known.

I wonder why the locks are not cut off. It is easily apparent by the dust that the locks have not been touched in years.

Perhaps one day when I go out to head home, the locks will be perfoming their intended function by securing bikes. Or the locks may be gone, leaving me to speculate if the owner finally retrived their lock, or the owner of the garage finally got tired of the locks decorating the fences and cut them off.

07 January 2015

Back on the Saddle Again

Today was the first day commuting by bike since Christmas Eve.

The 2 week hiatus was brought on by a miserable head cold that wouldn't leave.  The fact that it occured during the same time as the coldest week of the year was nothing more than pure dumb luck.

Getting back on the bike proved harder than I thought it would. I kept on saying things like "The air is crap, my throat and lungs can't handle that right now". Plus, heated minivan seats are soooo nice - especially when the morning temp is in the single digits.

But the bike calls, and I could no longer ignore its siren song. 

"You don't have to prove anything to anyone." My wife said to me.  True enough, I don't have to prove anything to anyone - which is why I stopped using Strava (another story for another time) - except for myself.  So I found myself this morning making sure that my lock was in my bag, pulling on my cycling shoes, bundling up, and rolling down the driveway on my trusty Motobecane.

You can only ignore the siren call for so long...

06 January 2015

New Clif Bar Flavors

Here at Bike-Junkie Global HQ, we're always excited to hear when Clif announces a new bar flavor. This time, we have two.

Nuts & Seeds, and Berry Pomegranate Chia.

To me, the Nuts & Seeds is like their Crunchy Peanut Butter, only better. To the peanut butter, they added almonds, sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Sweet, salty, and delicious!

The missus was a big fan of the Berry Pomegranate Chia bar. The tangy bite of pomegranates and Cranberries combined with sweet strawberries, with some natural energy from the chia seeds.

Both bars were great!

Look for them wherever you find Clif bars.

05 January 2015

Product Review: Cushe Footwear

Let's face it, you can't wear your cycling shoes all the time. Sooner or later you'll need to walk, and fashion, common sense, or the wife will dictate that you need to put something else on your feet.

Enter Cushe Footwear.

Cushe (pronounced "cushy") is a UK-born footwear company. They started in 2004 wanting to create something a bit different.

I have been long-term testing a pair of their slippers since early last year. They quickly became - and have remained my go-to footwear when I am off the bike.

They are light, easily packable, comfortable, duarable (they survived traipsing across Europe last march), and casually fashionable. They are easy to slip on after ditching your cleats (Cushe was the official casual footwear sponsor in 2013 of the 5-Hour ENERGY presented by Kenda racing team).

They even come in fun patterns, such as this tropical-themed print from Hoffman California fabrics.

Cushe slippers retail for $50.

Cushe also has your feet covered during the colder months.

When I was a kid, I laughed that my dad had a pair of boots that had a zipper up the side. After wearing the Matthias Waterproof boots, I am totally sold.

The Matthias WP boots are comfortable, warm, and as the "WP" in the name suggests, perfect when it is slushy and wet outside.  They retail for $125

More information can be found at www.cushe.com

19 December 2014

I Don't Get It

My daily commute frequently starts before the sun rises - and durning the winter months, ends after it sets. To wit, I have lights both front and rear on my bike.

At times, I will see other commuters out there that have a tiny little red blinkies on the rear of their bike, and nothing else.

I don't get it. 

Cars turning on to the road from side streets, and oncoming cars making left-hand turns may not see - or be looking for an unlit shadow on the side of the road. 

Also, I use my lights not only to be seen, but to see. It's hard to see potholes and other debris at gets pushed into the bike lanes and the sides of the road without lights - heck, it's hard to see them even with! A few weeks ago, I slashed my tire on some broken glass in my lane, because I didn't see it. 

If you're dedicated or committed enough to be out there riding every day, invest in your safety. Buy some lights for the front of your bike. 

08 December 2014

Sunday Funnies - Except it's Monday

This one was too good to wait. It speaks to me on so many levels. Well, at least two levels.

Does that mean that I am doubly arrogant?