Cyclists are a diverse crowd of people usually from many different walks of life but brought together by the perfect creation known as the bicycle. While out on the trail or road you will run into many unique characters who can usually fit into a specific cycling sub-culture. At the risk of stereotyping and being boarder line racist, I bring you "The Eight Mountain Bikers You Will Meet". Remember, its just for fun.
Usually when you come across this cyclist its a middle aged white male sporting a full on lycra race team kit who dosen't have the time or courtesy to say hello as he passes you. It seems he always has a serious or nearly pissed off look on his face as his rides are always spent "training" and most likely rides a carbon 29er with 2.1" tires. His GPS and power meter are beeping as he passes by, and when he gets home he has to enter all his ride details into a complex spreadsheet. He spends alot of time searching for the lightest carbon bits for his bike and categorizes meals as good or bad carbs. The Racer's main concern is getting on the podium at the local weeknight race series, and talking shit with all the other racer types on the regional cycling forum.
The Retro Grouch
You've seen this rider. He blasts by you riding a mid 90's hardtail, bouncing down the trail on the edge of control with equipment like cantilever brakes, 8 speed drivetrain, vintage Panaracer tires, and a Rock Shox Judy fork to boot. His equipment is well worn but dialled in and he scoffs at the idea of buying a new bike from this century. He will argue that his clapped out bike with 120mm stem and 400mm bars is the pinnacle of bike technology and all subsequent bike related inventions are redundant. He rarely visits a bike shop as he buys all his replacement parts used from eBay. When he does visit a bike shop you can usually see him bitching about why cables cost so much and why can't he buy a new Panaracer Smoke tire?
The Bro Rider
Easily summed up as the douchebag of cycling, this early 20's adrenaline seeker is kitted out with a long travel suspension bike bought with his parent's money and a full kit of Troy-Lee Designs gear. He's always looking to "shred the gnar" and ride the "sickest" lines. He is always the guy who laughs at other riders when they go down and offers no assistance. He never brings any spares and can be seen walking his bike out of the woods every once in a while because of it. If you don't give him your spare tube when he flats you are usually "harshing the buzz" of the ride in his eyes. Sometimes the Bro Rider can be of benefit to everyone else because they usually give up on mountain biking after two seasons and move onto something like cliff diving or parkour while selling their top shelf enduro bike for peanuts to free up space for their new juicer.
The Wheel Size Guy
This rider loves their 29er/650b/fat/plus/whatever bike and won't shut the hell up about it. They usually are of the opinion that their chosen wheel size is best and you are inferior for riding anything else than what they deem proper. They can usually be seen handing out unsolicited advice about how you could benefit from riding a 29er/650b/etc like they do and that they are the best thing since sliced bread. These guys are usually good for some entertainment value, its great to tell them that you don't think you would need an XXer to ride a particular trail feature and watch their head explode.
The Naturally Skilled Rider
This rider usually has no idea about anything to do with cycling but can ride like a son of a bitch. Nearly always on a department store bike or an entry level Specialized he got from a garage sale, he will ride past you like you are standing still. You can usually hear them coming because their derailleur is so far out of adjustment that the squeaky dry chain is clanging and trying to shift gears while he rides along. This rider could benefit from a solid bike and some knowledge in the area of chainging gears and fixing flat tires but will argue that they are perfectly happy with what they have. Riding with this guy will frustrate the hell out of you as he will pass you on your carbon 29er at the base of the climb and leave you in the dust while mashing the pedals on his 60 pound department store special.
The Trail Guru
This guy always seems to be out in a particular trail when you are. He can always be seen helping other riders who are lost or need some recommendations on what trails to ride. He knows the name of every trail in the system and always seems to know what the conditions are like at any given time. He also knows about each and every downed tree or debris blocking a trail and will give you a heads up. He will offer his spare tube or chain link to help a stuck rider and accept nothing in return. He is always smiling and makes time to stop and chat with anyone that feels the urge. He is usually an older gent with a beard who you would swear must live out in these woods somewhere. He is a wealth of knowledge and usually well respected by the local riders.
Top of the Line Guy
This rider is easily spotted by their shiny new bikes with all the flashy bits you could ever imagine bolted to it. This is a money-is-no-object type of person who has no issue in slamming down $7000 every year on a new bike with full XTR and carbon everything. Their bike and gear is always so new that you wonder if they even ride much. Every trailside water break with them turns into a discussion about why their gold plated chain works so much better than your good old half worn out nickel plated chain at twenty times the cost. Their garage is usually full of top of the line "spares" as they spend all their free time and money shopping online for the latest and greatest in bike parts. No matter what cool new piece of gear you get, they have something better and aren't afriad to tell you about it. This rider is not humble by any means and is the one-upper of the bike world.
This is an odd one. The Stravasshole is usually a sub-category of The Racer, taking his need for data collection and training even further while giving up on the racing part. They chase things called KOM's in a virtual online time trail against other Stravassholes, all while giving kudos to eachother in an online circle jerk. They spend alot of time checking their performance on the Strava website and looking at flyby and heatmap info, looking for the perfect segment to score their next KOM. They usually cry like little bitches when they lose their hard earned KOM to someone faster. The Stravasshole is a serious beast, always having their game face on and ready to cuss you out if you get in their way, costing them valuable seconds in their KOM attempts. This rider can usually be seen only riding on days when conditions are best (to increase their odds of going faster) and usually cutting corners and technical features to gain precious milliseconds. During the winter months, the Stravasshole goes into hibernation and transforms beautifully, just like a butterfly, into a Zwiftard until the next spring. If I ever hear someone come up behind me yelling "Strava" they are going to get my four inch wide tire shoved right up their ass.
Just imagine... you're having a great ride deep in the backwoods with nothing but yourself and the sounds of your tires on dirt and birds chirping, miles away from civilization. Just as you're enjoying the ride, the urge strikes and nothing is going to hold it back. Maybe you had a few too many tacos the night before or forgot to take the pre-ride dump, either way you need to get yourself out of the woods without toasting your riding shorts. If you're a rugged bushman you won't be a stranger to the bush dump, but some people are shy about having a crap in the woods and need some inspiration. Here are a few good tips for the "Bush Dump" that I've learned on my own, and with some guidance from dad in my younger years (he is the bush dump master).
Location, Location, Location
You need to scout out some good terrain for your bush crap. The best areas are flat and open with soil that can be easily dug. Keep away from the trail and any water source by at least a few hundred feet. Make sure the area is clear of nasty things like poison ivy. Watch out for signs that others have used the same spot for their bush dumps, they are usually marked by a stick pointing out of the ground or a set of sticks in a cross, this is common bush etiquette.
Dig it out
Time to dig your hole. Luckily the typical stiff soles of cycling shoes make digging a hole nice and easy. Dig down about six inches and large enough for your deposit. You're not digging to China here, just taking a dump.
I'm a fan of the good old fashioned squat. Some people will hang onto a tree or sit over a log, even hold hands with a dump buddy (if thats your thing), but the squat can't be beat. Every other animal out in the bush does the squat, you should too.
Keep it Clean
Good thing you're like me and packed a flattened out roll of toilet paper in your hydration pack. If you're a racer type and skip the TP in the name of weight savings, you're going to have a bad day. Look for an inviting leaf or pinecone, even birtch bark will work in a pinch (haha, pun) and get you feeling closer to nature. If you have a sensitive posterior like some of the lycra-clad XC geeks, you are going to be riding out with one sock. Refill your hole and burn the TP (be careful, only you can prevent forest fires). No lighter? Start rubbing sticks together or stuff your pockets, don't leave your TP out there to float in the breeze. Mark your hole with sticks as mentioned earlier.
There you have it. Now you hold the knowledge and can escape a back country bush dump without making your favourite riding outfit look like a 9-month-old's onesie after eating three servings of beans. Follow these simple rules and leave no trace, don't be the asshole that shits in the woods and leaves it like a dick for someone else to stumble into.
When you gotta go you gotta go.
Its been a while since I had a good rant so here goes.
What the fuck is up with assholes who cut the trail? The more popular the trails at Turkey Point get, the more cheater lines pop up everywhere. I understand the need for easy and hard routes in some sections but the blatant corner cutting of some people is just sickening. I'm not sure if its stupidity or the Stravasshole effect, but its getting downright maddening.
Take this corner on "The Burn" for example. This is near the north end of the trail just before it reaches Moosehead Junction. This end of the trail is known for being quite rooty and slower than the rest of the trail. Take a look at the photo evidence below looking at the corner from the entrance and the exit.
As you can see the original corner is already big enough to drive a straight truck through, then some assholes decided it was a great idea to cut that corner with a shitty little cheater line. I suspect this is the work of some Strava-addicted asshole who needs that precious half second to score his PR or KOM or whatever the fuck gets Stravassholes hard. What the dickhead in question does not realize is that now everyone is saving that half second on the cut corner and hes going to loose his bragging rights in their virtual race and won't receive as many "props" or what-the-fuck-have-you that those guys (virtually) stroke eachother off with.
If mountain biking was all about going fast maybe we should just pave a road through the woods and be done, but its not. Its about putting in the grunt work for the fast and flowing payoff, pushing yourself to the limit on both the fast sections and the slow grinding ones, earning your turns. If you can't ride a tough section or feel that it slows you down too much, work on your bike handling skills. Don't alter the trail to suit your own shortcomings, work that shit out on your end and become a better rider.
I've seen lots of this shit over the years, and some really awesome trail features removed because someone took it upon themselves to remove something they couldn't ride. I say fuck those people. If cutting corners is your thing then maybe you should take up sewing.
I did stick around after taking these photos and fix the corner in question, after all I am a man of action, not just some jerk with a keyboard.
In conclusion: Don't Fuck With The Trail!
I've realized (after a few emails) that some of you might have noticed that I'm posting less on the blog. Fear not, as I'm still in the game and have a few things coming down the pipe soon. My free time has been limited as of late and I've spent what time I have riding rather than writing. I'm about to have a bit of a schedule shift in life and should have some more free time in the evenings after the kids go to bed, which will let me blog on the couch beside Mrs. Bric while she watches her shows.
I'm also going to focus more on quality articles and stories rather than ride reports consisting of photos and "It was a great ride" kind of thing, it gets boring after a while. The great photos will keep coming though. I'm also planning on doing some more "away" rides this year and more riding with groups which will undoubtedly spur some interesting stories. I'm also reliving my youth and writing about adventures of years gone by that will be slowly published over the next year.
Stay tuned everyone! Thanks for reading!
Its been one of those weeks. Sick for the beginning of it then busy for the rest, trying to make up for two days of doing nothing. That gets me into a miserable / grumpy mood and I need to get a good bitching going. I can't tell anyone to get the fuck off my front lawn because its covered in snow. So, now for something totally off-topic but pisses me off.
People in drive thru lanes that don't know and / or follow simple drive thru etiquette. The concept of a drive thru is quite simple, it does not take a rocket scientist to do the order / pay / pickup routine but somehow people can be complete idiots and fuck it all up. Its not even like I spend alot of time in the drive thru lane, I like a bagel once or twice a week from Tims and its no secret that I enjoy the occasional cheeseburger. Anyways, here is the Bric's guide to not fucking up at the drive thru.
That pretty much covers it. If you have done / do any of the above, you are a drive-thru asshole. Time to change your ways for the benefit of others. After all, the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one.
Now, off to grab a cheeseburger......
Ever since I sold my Fatboy SE, I've had people picking my brain about why I rid myself of it and if it was a good bike or not. I've decided that I'll put it all out in the open, right here where people can choose to read it or ignore. Did I like the bike? Sure did. Did it have problems? Oh fuck yeah. Here are some honest thoughts from a guy who paid his own hard earned cash on the bike.
The Good Stuff:
The Fatboy is a phenomenal handling bike. Specialized really knows how to tweak geometry and get a quick but stable ride out of this bike. It never felt slow or sluggish, it carved hard and got up to speed quickly. Fit was excellent too, the stock cockpit was well sorted and the OEM bar / stem / post held everything together nicely.
It is decently light weight for a fat bike. With my 1x conversion and lightweight tubes I got the bike down to 31lbs, which I feel is reasonable for this type of bike.
The Specialized Ground Control tires are fantastic. They might cost an arm and a leg to replace but they work wonderfully. They roll fast and bite everywhere, with supple sidewalls to soak up the trail chatter.
I really liked the Specialized Henge saddle. I had some doubts about it at first but it won me over in the end. I liked it so much that I'm thinking of having my local Specialized dealer hook me up with one for my new trail bike. The Body Geometry grips were great too, the shape and feel were excellent, no hands going numb after spending hours riding.
The Bad Stuff:
First off I'm going to say fuck off with the pressfit bottom bracket creak box. I hated pressfit before but this bike took it to another level of mind numbing creaking and groaning with every pedal rotation. Maybe it has something to do with the wider crank spindle or increased loads due to the fat tires, either way it was an annoying and loud bunch of shit that could have been solved with running a good old BSA threaded shell.
The cassette. In its own, the cassette isn't all that bad. Its a lower end offering from Sunrace that seemed to shift just fine..... BUT...... Specialized tossed on a cassette with no carrier body onto and aluminum freehub. What the fuck are you thinking Specialized? What a bonehead move on your part. Here is a photo of my freehub body after one easy ride around the block with mentioned shitty cassette. Over a few weeks it would have been total annihilation of the freehub body. What pea brained idiots decided on that cassette / hub?
Since we are already talking about the hub, I might as well mention how shitty the Specialized hubs are. The rear hub had a tendency to puke the freehub body bearings on a few occasions, and judging by numerous online threads, I'm not alone here. Thanks Specialized for spec'ing Swiss Cheese for a hub.
Still on the hub topic..... why not a thru axle setup? Would have stiffened the bike up, and added some much needed longevity to the rear hub. That along with the fact that all of Specialized's competition has moved to thru axles.
The brakes. One thing I know fer certain is that if you're going to spec a mechanical brake on your bike, skid all the shit out there and go right for the best (and very affordable) Avid BB7. No excuses here, the OEM Tektro brakes are total fucking garbage. Also, the levers and cables / housings can be tossed into the trash along with the brakes.
Specialized nearly hit a home run here with a super handling bike, but some of the parts spec really holds it back. They might want to go back to the drawing board with a few choices or be left in the dust by better offerings in the same price range. I ended up modding mine enough to overcome some of the drawbacks but the hub and bb issues were the straw that broke the camel's back so to speak.
Maybe Specialized can offer me a job to spec their bikes with more of a "working man's" build kit that would stand up to some decent abuse, but I won't hold my breath waiting for it. I would get fired after the first day for telling the engineers and designers that they are fucking idiots for moving away from a threaded bb shell.
Agree or disagree, like it or not, thats how The Bric sees the Fatboy SE. This isn't a review so I won't give it a rating. If I hadn't gotten such a deal on the Fatboy I most likely would have bought something else, like a Kona Wo or Norco Sasquatch, but I don't regret my time on the Fatboy either.
Oh, and while I'm in a bitching mood and before I forget, here is the obligatory "Get the Fuck off my Lawn!"
Lately I've been feeling a little worn by all the new crap coming out in the bicycle industry. I think a part of it is that as I get older, I'm trying to hold onto the simplicity of my cycling youth. I think back sometimes about my old steel Barracuda A2R, a Tange steel frame with a Rock Shox Judy fork and Shimano XT components. There was something pure and innocent about that bike, not sure if it was how it rode or that everything on it was industry standard.
There is a term that gets tossed around way too much these days, Industry Standard. The truth is that we have a total lack of standards right now. With enough hub, bottom bracket, and headtube "standards" out there to make you puke its easy to get lost in the technical mumbo jumbo of these "innovations" that are supposed to make your ride better. All the marketing for the new stuff makes it seem like we all barely survived riding our 26" hardtails out in the rough cut backcountry trails of yesterday. You really don't need 140mm of suspension for that rock garden , we all used our old bone shakers to ride it years ago without much issue. Its a damn scam I tell ya.
Bottom brackets - Holy shit, the recent (read: 3-4 years ago) move from a standard bsa threaded bb shell to the press fit system is the biggest crock of shit I've ever seen. The old bsa bb was a standard on bicycles for many decades, all you really needed to know was 68 or 73mm shell and spindle width for chainline. The X-type (external bearing cup) bb was the best of the best, a system I still use on all my bikes (because it fucking works wonderfully). Then someone went and fixed what wasn't broken and came up with the "stiffer, lighter, stronger, cheaper" pressfit system. I've owned one bike with a pressfit bb and it creaked and moaned all day. I tried grease, torque, complete re-installation, all to no avail. Truth of the matter is that its cheaper for a bike manufacturer to ream a hole for a pressfit install than to thread a shell then chase it after welding. In the last few days the all new T47 system has been all the talk about how it will fix all the PF30 issues. Guess how? With threads in the bb shell. Holy fuck! Talk about coming full circle and fixing a problem that didn't exist in the first place. Maybe soon they will come out with an "all new" square taper crank interface! Imagine that!
Hubs - Once upon a time all mountain bikes had 100mm QR front hubs and 135mm QR rears (130 on old 7 speed mountain bikes). These days you can have your pick from the good old 135mm all the way to 197 through axle hubs. I understand that fat bikes need big hubs, but the recent "Boost 148" hub is a joke. We already have a 142mm thru-axle system but the new 148 claims to be stiffer, lighter, blah blah blah. The Boost 110mm front hub is super amazing and stiff too, but we already had 110mm thru-axle hubs that existed for decades in the form of 110mm x 20, which was obviously too heavy so they made it 110 x 15. Yeah, thats better. More of what is old is new again.
Headtubes and steerers - Use to be 1.125" was the go to size. Now its 1.5" tapered to 1.125", and Cannondale was ahead of the game with their 1" 9/16ths steerer on the Headshok product since the late '90s. These days you have to buy headsets in two parts, uppers and lowers. You use to be able to just choose a nice 1.125" headset and go, now you need to do NASA level math calculations to combo up a headset suitable for you current bike.
Maybe I'm just being an old retro-grouch (which is entirely possible) but I feel like the golden age of mountain bikes has passed us by and bikes are now built without soul like they once were. Bikes use to have kickass names like Avalanche, Pantera, Alien, Hammer, Blizzard, Attitude..... now its all boring shit like XXXwhateverXXX 7.5 and the XXXblah BlahXXX 9.3. Bikes also use to be made from steel tubing, not that plastic shit they are now, and had a lively feel unlike the dead feeling carbon bikes of today. I still like my 4130 Cro-mo frames, my plain jane threaded bottom bracket, my quick release skewers, and tubes in tires. Its impossible to buy a bike like that now, unless I go for a custom built frame.
I guess I'm just trying to hang onto the good old days, but as Bob Dylan says "The Times They Are A Changin'". So retro-grouch me up. And while I'm in a bitching mood, get the fuck off my lawn.
My blog has turned a year old. Can't believe that its been a year already. Its been fun, at times it was frustrating, but a good experience for me. I've learned a few things and improved my writing skills but am still by no means ready to quit my day job and pursue a career with such fine publications as Mountain Bike Action (fuck those guys) or Bicycling (I'm too fat for Style-Man's standards). This blog is as close as I will get to being famous (which I don't give two flying shits about, I would like to be rich though. I would love some new bikes).
I want to say thanks to the small but dedicated group of people who read my blog regularly. Without you guys I would have given up a long time ago. It nice to know that I have a group of readers here in Ontario that check in often, as well as a few in the States. Even a fellow in Italy reads my stuff regularly. Thanks everyone!
Looking back on my first year's articles makes me laugh and get angry all at the same time. It all started with the article I Love Cheap Bikes, which professed my love for affordable but capable machines. My first rant about Trail Sanitization was a fun one too. @$$holes Who Litter is on the required reading list of The Bric as well. My Cycling History was a fun one to write, reminiscing of rides in years gone by. Some of my personal favourites are Cheeseburger Fueled, Bike Magazines can Fuck Off, Helmetless Fucks, and of course, Cycling and your Nose (Snot Management). There are lots more that I'd love to list but you can find the good stuff by clicking on Rants and Good Reads in the categories column >>>>>>>>>>
I also want everyone to know that there is more to come. I'm riding more and more often, angry as fuck, and still just as fat.
Its no secret that I'm a big dude. At 6' and 250lbs I'm about as aerodynamic as a beer keg and look like I would be more at home sporting leather chaps atop a big Harley Davidson, and I'm okay with it.
Whenever I tell someone for the first time that I'm a cyclist I usually get a deer-in-the-headlights look of disbelief followed by the question "you ride bicycles?". I feel like replying "yes I do, thanks for being a total asshole and just assuming that I'm a lazy fatass" but usually just smile and nod. The follow up question varies, some of the best ones I've heard over the years that have stayed with me were "aren't you a little........ husky to ride a bike?", "are you riding to lose weight?", "you must ride with a slower group then?". My immediate reaction is to punch those people in the face, but I hold back and smile, with the dumbass who made the jerk-hole comment none the wiser to how close they came to having their life flash before their eyes. Just think about it..... would you poke a grizzly bear with a stick? Didn't think so.
I also get a kick out of the 'looks' from other riders at the trailhead and even out on the trail. I've seen the snickers and grins, heard the quiet giggles between friends, even watched as people made gestures that were clearly poking fun at me. I just let it go, knowing full well that I could break these douches in half if the mood arises. Again with the grizzly bear......
I stay calm because I know that their attitude is about to be adjusted. I let them giggle and roll into the trail, still doing their fat guy jokes. I let them get a minute or two ahead of me before I roll out, and put on the gas. I does not take long before I catch most of these jokers, the sound of a fat bike coming down on you must be frightening because they usually pull right off the side of the trail and let me by while I turn my head and give them a big shit eating grin as I pass by. The usual response to this is wide open mouths catching flies while drooling on their Troy Lee Designs jersey. I especially liked it when I passed the douche nozzle on a race bike, wearing a full on sausage suit, with a gps attached to the bars so he could be a Strava hero, while on a big switchback climb. He looked pissed. I especially liked the group of three dudes scoping out a rough section of trail at Puslinch, I heard one say "you need at least 5" of suspension to ride this" as I zipped by on a rigid fat bike through the rough.
Now, I'm not saying all other riders are assholes. For the most part, everyone is nice and accepting of others in all shapes and sizes. There is no cyclist mold, we come in big and small, and most riders know it. Its usually the "bros" or "amateur race types" that like to have a good laugh at my expense, even though its short lived after I come rolling down the trail, smashing their self inflated ego. Sometimes they are fast and I can't catch them, but sometimes not. Just because I'm fat does not mean I'm slow.
I know some other riders who a big fellas too. I can't really say any of them are slow. Matter of fact, their is an owner of a well known bike shop in London who is a bigger fella and can absolutely rip the trail up. I've seen lots of "big dudes" and "large ladies" that can haul it through the singletrack at break neck speed. Don't assume that because we are bigger, we are slow or handicapped in some way. We ride trails, we ride road, we ride 100km epics, we ride 1.5 hour after work jaunts, we race, we pull our kids around in trailers, we ride for fun.
I love riding, but I also love a good post-ride cheeseburger. That and my wife is an awesome cook. I'm okay with fat. Ride on!
So it seems that bike magazines these days are lacking in the content department. I can say without a doubt that most are just glorified bike ads. Have you seen a bike review in Mountain Bike Action lately? Pretty much just cut and paste text talking about how fucking awesome and cutting edge the bike is, with big high def photos of said bike. They are usually in the unobtainium range for average joe as well, costing usually between $5000-$9000. Then they just regurgitate the same bull shit on each page for each product until the magazine you pay for at the news stand is dripping with manure.
My favourite part of these mags is when they showcase a product then try to play off the cost as if its a great deal. MBA had a little feature a while back on some wheels that "didn't break the bank" at a tune of $1500. What The Fuck. I didn't even pay $1500 for my bike let alone wheels, and this is a budget wheelset for you? What are you sniffing MBA? Glue? Maybe all that methane gas from the bullshit flying around your office has gotten to your heads.
Bicycle Times featured a polo jacket made for cycling around the city looking like a fucking hipster douche bag for over $400 and said it was a great value. Da Fuq? I tried to like this mag, even bought a few issues. Its just that the overall hipster fuckheaded-ness was too much, that and the fact that they think electric bikes are actual bicycles. Dumbasses.
Dirt Rag isn't bad but not every mountain biker swills back beer so could you piss off with the 'bikes and beer' attitude? Nothing pisses me off more than the "tip your mechanic with a beer" or "I'll bring the post-ride beers" kinda attitude. I don't drink, and I don't give a fuck if you do or not, but don't paint a picture that makes mountain bikers look like a bunch of tailgaters posing around their bikes.
Bicycle Magazine is out there for the discerning roadie, and with columns like "Style Man" it delivers. I mean, how could you not have a column dedicated to being a fashionable rider? If you aren't fast, at least you can look the part, right? Oh the vanity.
The best magazine I read was back in my early days of riding (late 90's) when Mountain Bike was still being published. It had Zapata Espinoza as editor and Dan Koeppel writing the column "Hug the Bunny". It was informative enough with decent reviews that actually pointed out the shortcomings of some bikes and had just enough of that "fuck you" attitude to be real. Most folk didn't like Zap but I enjoyed his column. We need more of this. Right now. We need reviews that can actually say "hey, -insert company name- , you've built some real junk over the years and some winners, and fuck you just because". I also want to see reviews of real world bikes. The kind that people in the 99% buy in the $400 - $2500 range. Someone needs to point out the obvious bull shit money grabs too and call these bastards out on their own bullshit. It would be great if a mag said "hey Sram, your new Boost hubs are a bunch of bullshit, fuck off with the new standards already", rather than the all to usual paid review saying how Sram is "revolutionizing" the bike industry by adding a couple of millimeters to front and rear hubs.
I'm starting to sound like a grumpy old retro-grouch so I'll quit my bitching. But hey, if you like reading these cookie cutter mags with photoshopped images then all the power to you. Just remember to put it down, forget the hype, and go for a nice ride on your already kick ass bike.
The Bric...._ mountain biker, road rider, heavyweight gear abuser. Built like a brick sh*thouse. No bike is safe.