190: Every Damn Day.
You remember James Selman right? He has appeared on these pages a few times. I think once or twice over the summer. Most notably in this post when he had to remove the entire contents of his Mad Alchemy jar and put it in a plastic bag. No big deal. So, Matthew Karre (remember he "won" the King Kong Classic) wrote a little article about James for this upcoming Volume 5 (preorder preorder). At one point in his career he made a little patch kit for this company called Nike. Maybe you have heard of it? Kyle over at Tracko did a little thing about it not too long ago.
In any case he stopped by the office last week on the nicest day of the winter. It was so nice outside that I even hesitate to call it winter at this point. I think that it was something like 60 degrees out. No complaints here. This is exactly what I was so desperate to move toward when leaving the East Coast. Call me a pussy if you have to. I do not mind (and my skin does not hurt when I leave the house each morning either - do not act like you don't know what I'm talking about.)
So, when he stopped by for a moment I literally grabbed his bike and took it for a spin around the block. Mainly so that I could check out the built in handle for carrying the bike up and down stairs. Laugh if you will but it seems as though this could be a pretty popular item for people living in cities. I remember more than a few apartments where this could have come in handy. Not because I have a problem shouldering the bike. Because I do not. But because some of those old stairwells made it positively unnavigable with a bike on your shoulder.
This bike did a strange thing for me though. Evoked a different feeling. One that went sort of like this... I'll try to explain it the best I can... It make me think to myself "well, I don't have one of these" in a way that made me want to cruise around the neighborhood. You see, I do not get the opportunity to cruise much. Even when riding too and from work I feel like it is always a race. This could be one of two reason. One because I am notoriously late. Always.
And two because, well, and here comes the big revelation, I do not think it is in my nature. I do not do well with cruising, or sitting around. I am trying to change that though. You know, go for a cruise around the block every once in a while. Read a book or something. Stroll through the f-ing park every once in a while...
That is kind of what this bicycle does though, or is aiming to do. Take something sporty like a road bike and sort of find the balance between the race and the cruise. Not too high-tech and carbon, but still having a Shimano Nexus hub for the S. Brown* in us all. That guy would have lost his shit over this bike - I mean it says "Let Us Chase the Sun" on the headtube. Grant Peterson just had multiple bikegasms in his MUSA Rain Pants over that shit. (the Nitto helped.)
All jokes aside. What this bike does best, and what makes me want to ride it is that is looks good. I know that might sound a bit strange, but it really does make me want to ride it because it does not look like one of these funky downtube Giant Commuter Hybro Fat Wheel Contraptions. I would not be embarrassed to be seen on this bike. Unless you were riding past me on this bike. Then I would feel embarrassed for you, me, and most importantly humanity.
This bike has been conceptualized right down to the very last few details of it. Can I say that? I mean haven't most bikes that you see today? Carey SH used to work at Raleigh and she told me that they have whole departments for conceptualizing these things. But the difference here (and this is where Selman comes in) is that the bike has been conceptualized by a Cyclist. I know, crazy thought, and maybe even something that one day will be put into practice by some of these bigger bike brands, but until then we will have to stick with these guys.
My few final bits here are my favorite of the bike. The painting of the phrase "Every Day" on the seattube is amazing (especially with that little glint of sunlight on there.) It is almost as good as "Guilt Trip" but maybe not as condescending. Just a friendly reminder. But then again, if you do not have a car then Every Day becomes Nessesity? Maybe?
The other little bit is the Cycle Works Oregon Logo that is placed lower on the seat tube near the bottom bracket. Cycle Works is something interesting that is worth exploring as well. Another time. But I like the logo and I like the photo somehow as well. It feels a little strange but probably has more to do with the pretzel yoga stance I was in trying to get the photo and the high school age kids that snuck up behind me and made fun of the yellow bike I was taking photos of. What do they know anyway?
I feel like I need a City Bike now. What should I do? To get rid of that feeling that is? Ride my winter training bike home in the rain? Punch myself in the nuts? Get another bike? Take photos of yours? I need options here people.
*Dear Harris Cyclery, I feel like I kind of just shot photos of your whole catalog. Take a look back through here, see the Tourguards? They still in the basement by the bathroom? How about the Kool Stop Salmon Pads? Two in each baggie. And lets not even talk about the Nitto Stuff. Thank god they didn't choose a Gilles Berthoud bag or I would have lost my shit.