Something Old, Something New

02.11.2007 | 9:58 pm

It has been a cold, miserable Winter. I am sick, sick, sick of riding the rollers and trainer. So as you’d expect, the prospect of a weekend in warm Southern Utah sounded even better to me than usual.

And it didn’t just sound good to me, either. Other people made sacrifices to do this ride:

  • Bob flew in from Seattle, leaving his wife to tend with sick toddler twins.
  • BotchedExperiment bailed on working on his doctoral dissertation.
  • Kenny ummm, okay, it was no sacrifice at all for Kenny to come. If he hadn’t been riding with us all weekend, he’d have been riding somewhere else all weekend.
  • Paul left the criminal justice system of Southern Utah untended.
  • Dug asked his wife if he could go.
  • Rick made necessary adjustments at work, which is not as trivial as it might seem, because he is an important executive in an important company. He is, in fact, thrice as important as you and I combined. But nothing matters to Rick as much as honoring a commitment. If he says he’s going to be somewhere, there’s simply no question: he will be there.
  • Brad told his tenants to fix their own stupid water heaters for 48 hours.

See what I mean? You’ve got to make sacrifices if you want to get out and get some quality ride time in with your friends.

Day 1: Gooseberry Mesa
Gooseberry Mesa seems to be on everyone’s “Best Trails in the World” list, and for good reason. It’s beautiful, it’s got both technical and moderate terrain, making it a good trail for a wide range of abilities, and you can make the ride last all day or just a couple hours — whatever you’ve got time for.

I’m guessing the owner of this truck has some pretty deep feelings about this trail:

The strangest thing about riding Gooseberry Mesa in the middle of February is that you don’t feel like you’re going to die from the heat. We were still wearing shorts and short sleeves (and sometimes armwarmers), but didn’t feel like we’re melting.

Preliminary Report on the ATC-2000
A couple months ago, I mentioned that I was buying an ATC-2000 video camera to be able to do first-person video of riding. Well, it’s arrived, and I mounted it on my handlebar for the Gooseberry ride. As I slalomed through the beautiful slot canyons and desert scenery, I kept thinking what awesome footage this would make, and how cool it would look on my blog.

Sadly, it’s totally unwatchable.

The thing about mounting a camera on the handlebars of a rigid bike and then filming as you ride on rough singletrack and sandstone is the resulting video shows off every turn of the handlebar, every bump of the bike, to great effect.

If I posted the footage and then you watched it, I guarantee you would throw up.

I’m not giving up, though. I’m going to try mounting the camera on my helmet next, which should smooth things out at least a little bit.

As a consolation prize, how about I instead show you this excellent photo of Kenny I took.

Also, I do have lots of good video using my regular camcorder — I just haven’t learned enough about Premiere to edit it together yet. I’ll try to get that posted tomorrow.

Quick Summary of Day 1
Not too long ago, I posted about riding Gooseberry with my friends, and this was a similar day. So let’s skip to the group photo:

I can’t pretend this is the best group picture we’ve ever taken. First of all, it’s so obvious that I’m sucking in my gut. It looks like I’ve got three, maybe 4 seconds ’til I absolutely positively have to exhale.

And then there’s Dug. I don’t know what was up with him, but he insisted on removing his shirt for this photo. He said something about being “totally into Pilate’s.” I think Kenny’s right to be leaning away from him, to tell the truth.

And don’t even get me started about Brad and Rick. They were like that the whole day. Any time anyone said anything about it, though, Brad would go into his Mui Thai fighting stance, and Rick would start telling you to begin with the end in mind.

Whatever that means.

The craziest thing in the whole photo, though, is Bob. What’s up with that pose? He looks like he’s standing in line at a wedding reception.

Day 2: Little Creek
You know what’s really, really sad? The fact that for years and years and years, we have traveled to Gooseberry Mesa, ridden for a day, and then turned around and gone home, thinking we had ridden the best of what the area had to offer.

This whole time, we were — fools that we are — ignoring the ride literally across the street from Gooseberry Mesa: Little Creek.

I promise you, that will never happen again.

While Gooseberry is a perfect mountain bike playground, Little Creek is an elegant high desert singletrack paradise. Gooseberry is a tight snarl of trails that interconnect and turn back on themselves. Little Creek is a big loop that really shows you around the place, displaying incredible views at ever turn.

Gooseberry is, in short, a perfect first-day ride of a two day trip: it tests you and wears you out. Little Creek is the perfect second-day ride — it’s a big rolling tour, punctuated with lots of excellent places to test your riding skill.

It’s at Least Somewhat About the Bike
An hour or so into the ride, I volunteered to switch bikes with Bob, so he could see what it’s like to ride a 29″-wheeled, fully-rigid singlespeed on this kind of terrain. I, in turn, would ride his 26″-wheeled, full-suspension geared bike for a while. We switched shoes since we don’t use the same kind of pedals (Bob is the last person in the world using Speedplay Frogs), and took off.

At about the same time, Kenny and Paul switched bikes, giving Paul a chance to ride a bike like mine (but much, much lighter — Kenny’s put some serious money into making his Rig race-worthy).

Bob immediately fell in love with the Rig. He went on and on about how smooth, quiet, and intuitive a singlespeed felt. He talked about how he didn’t really feel the need to shift with this bike.

I get the sense that there’s a singlespeed in Bob’s future.

Kenny wasn’t having much fun with Paul’s bike, though. It was too small for him. The geometry felt wrong. He had a hard time clipping in.

Dan observed that Paul’s bike was like kryptonite to Kenny.

It was during this brief riding exchange that I got to witness Kenny ride down a very ordinary-looking drop — no more than 18″ — then slide off the back of the seat and rack himself on the seatpost.

I tell you what: there’s nothing quite so funny as watching a guy try to recover from a good hard kick to the balls.

Meanwhile, I was actually having fun riding Bob’s bike, even though Bob has elected to wear terrible biking shoes — I wouldn’t have believed it possible for MTB shoes to have such flimsy soles — with cleats mounted so far back they were pressing right into my arches.

Other than that, though, I was enjoying Bob’s bike. It felt wild to have so much cush. 

And that’s when I found out how used I have become to 29″ wheels. Riding down a fairly non-descript series of ledges, I lost control of the bike. I don’t know why, I don’t know how. I was riding along one second, and the next second I was rocketing toward a tree.

You know what’s interesting? When the front of your bike hits a tree, the bike stops immediately, but the rider keeps on going until he hits something.

For example, the rider might stop because his testicles have slammed into the stem of his bike.

I tell you what: there’s nothing even remotely funny about having everyone stand around you, laughing at the way you’re screaming in pain, doubled over from a good hard kick to the balls.

Since this is a family blog, I cannot / will not provide a picture, but rest assured: I am black and blue in some highly unusual and sensitive areas.

Oh, and it still hurts to pee.

I also cut up my face and my right leg:

But you know what? I landed on my feet. So I get style points for that, don’t I?

The Surreal Bushes
Riding at Gooseberry and Little Creek, I saw bushes that I have never seen (or at least noticed) before. Check this out:


Yes, that rough gray bark is encased, in some places, with a deep maroon coating, as smooth and shiny as polished mahogany. Have a closer look:

Does anyone know what kind of bush this is? It’s gorgeous, whatever it is. 

I’d Like Some More, Please
While Gooseberry is tight and twisty, Little Creek gives you a grand tour. We rode along the rim for big stretches of time, incredible vistas just off to our left (I’m not sure where Brad, Dug, and Rick are in this photo; they were probably working on a move or something).

And then you’re riding in a dry creek bed. And then on slickrock. And then weaving in and out of forests of juniper bushes.  

Really, just an exquisite ride. Definitely worth the effort to get away from it all for a weekend, as I’m certain my friends all agree.

PS: Today’s weight: 169.6. Hey, when you travel, you eat.

PPS: There are a few minor factual inaccuracies in this post. See if you can find them!


Thinking About Linking

02.8.2007 | 4:44 pm

A semi-apologetic note from Fatty: Today I actually intended to write a fake news piece that’s been bumping around in my head. But then I got a slow start this morning (i.e., I stumbled around in a blank fog, taking forever to get to the point of being able to recognize the alphabet, much less write),  my lunch hour evaporated (i.e., I worked through it), and now the end of the day is here.

And the thing is, tomorrow I’ll be heading out on a nice two-day mountain bike ride with my friends — we’re off to Gooseberry Mesa!

My point is that I didn’t have much time to write today.

Still, I have a question about the what, how, and whether of links in my blog, and since you’re the ones who would actually be using this list o’ links, I’d like your input.

When I moved my blog over from MSN Spaces to my own website, it was with grand plans of doing all kinds of new things. You know, a forum (did that), selling a jersey (doing that), partnering with cool companies that are doing interesting stuff and are willing to give it away to my readers (doing that in a big way), and creating an area for reader-contributed biking stories (working on that, stay tuned).

Along the way, I’ve roughly doubled my readership, comments are through the roof, and my Google ads are very nearly about to start covering my Web hosting costs.

In other words, things are mostly going great. Yay!

In doing all this fanciness, though, I’ve neglected one of the most basic things a good blog has: a list of links to other blogs and sites I like.

That’s lame of me.

People to Link To
There are some sites / blogs that I obviously need to link to:

But that’s not the whole list, obviously. I’m obviously missing some good stuff.

So who else should I link to?

Turnabout is Fair Play
One way it seems I could/should be linking to other folks is by checking who’s linking to me. If you’ve got a blog and link to me, there’s a better chance I’ll link back than if you email me asking me to link to your super-cool blog, which — naturally — does not link to me.

Oh, by the way. If you think you’ve got a link to me, but actually have a link to my old MSN Spaces site, do me a favor and update your link, OK?  

Wherein I Consider the Cosmic Relevance of Blogs and Links
Which is more useful?

  • A big ol’ long list of links
  • A very short list of links with my very, very, very favorite places to visit
  • A big ol long list of links, of which a random selection of ten (or 5? or whatever?) is shown at any given moment, so as not to overwhelm you.
  • No links at all

I should have good stories to tell (and some pics and video) this Monday. Have a good weekend!

PS: Today’s weight: 166.2

How to Behave When You Know You’re Going to Die

02.7.2007 | 6:51 am

A Prize-Announcing Special Note from Fatty: Congratulations to the winners of the first-ever Fat Cyclist Photo Contest. With 163 photos submitted, Kenny had a very tough time choosing a winner.

So he chose three.

The Grand Prize winner gets the $100 credit towards development on Kenny’s site as well as the mounted enlargement. First Prize winners get $25 toward development at Kenny’s site.

Congrats to the winners! Email me and I’ll hook you up with Kenny so you can collect your prize.

First Prize
LanterneRouge submitted this beautiful entry, “Montrose Harbor:”

LanterneRouge says about this one: “This is not part of the contest because it is heavily altered. I’m posting it anyway because I like it a lot. In the background is the Chicago skyline. Well, it would be if it wasn’t obscured by clouds.”

Sorry, LanterneRouge, but neither Kenny nor I care about whether you spent a bunch of time Photoshopping the image. The fact is it’s awesome, and we’re going to give you a prize whether you want it or not.

First Prize
JSnow contributed this beautiful image, “Winter eve ride #3:”

Jsnow didn’t do a caption for this image, but it doesn’t really need one. This is a great photo.

Grand Prize
The winning entry is by Vanetten, and is titled “Russian Bikers:”

The caption reads, “March 2006: “Opening Day of Bike Season” in Moscow. Several hundred bikers of all ages and capabilities show up for a rally point deep in a forest outside of Moscow. These gents had been there for a day already, camping out and keeping warm with liquid fuel…”

Again, congrats to the winners.

OK, now on with the regularly-scheduled program.

I Am Just Fine, Thanks
Before I get rolling today, I should make one thing very clear: I am not announcing that I have some kind of terminal sickness. I have not discovered that my Lipoma is actually malignant or something (click here if you’re wondering why I capitalized “Lipoma,” or if you’re wondering what I’m talking about at all).

I’m just fine.

There have been three times, however, when I was absolutely, positively certain that I was about to die.

And all three times have been while I was on a bike.

Certainty of Death #1: Run off the Road
There are a lot of long, twisty road climbs near where I live. I think my favorite stretch of road, though, is the climb up from Provo Canyon, up past Sundance Ski Resort, and to the top of the Alpine Loop.

I love the climb because the descent payoff is incredible. The curves come at you nonstop as you’re descending as fast as you dare to go, making bets with yourself as to what your tires’ limits of adhesion are. If you get into a descending groove, you stop feeling like your bike is something you’re riding. Instead, it’s something you are.

Except for a brief period in the Spring when the road is clear but still closed to auto traffic, though, this road has as much draw to car traffic as it does to bikes, and for a lot of the same reasons.

And that is why I found myself face-to-face with a car as I was barreling downhill, me on the inside corner of a right-turning hairpin. Him trimming the hairpin blind, on the wrong side of the road.

As many people know, the easiest way to imagine how much damage a cyclist will suffer if he has a head-on with a car is to take the sum of your speed and the car’s speed and then imagine you riding your bike at that speed into a wall.

In this instance, I would have been hitting that wall at about 65 miles per hour.

“Dammit,” I said. Yes, just “dammit.” And it wasn’t even an outraged “dammit.” More a “dammit” of resignation. This was going to be it. You know: it.

Out of instinct — certainly not out of any higher reasoning — I jerked the handlebar away from the car.

I turfed it into a ravine, taco-ing my front wheel and wearing completely through my bike gloves.

The guy driving the car pulled over, mortified and nauseous about what he had just nearly done. It was kind of weird, actually: we both got hit by the shakes and the nausea about at the same time. So we were both sitting on the side of the road, waiting to feel like we could stand, while his soon-to-be fiancee (he was driving her up to a picturesque spot to propose, he told me) sat in the car, looking at us and wondering what was going on.

Certainty of Death #2: High-Speed Catapult into a Tree
The second time I thought I was going to die, it was nobody’s fault but my own.

I was into the final 25 miles of the Leadville 100. I was feeling giddy because Dug and Bob and I had gathered at the final aid station, deciding to finish the race together. We had finished the final big climb and were flying down the St. Kevins doubletrack. Dug had shot on ahead, Bob was staying with me.

As I said, I was feeling giddy. I was with my friends, the ride was in the bag, I still felt good.

So I started goofing around a little bit. You know, doing little bunny hops. Popping wheelies. Using little woop-de-doos in the trail as jumps.

Note to self: You are not an especially good downhiller under any circumstance, and are especially not a good downhiller after you’ve been on your bike for ten hours. And you’re an especially really not-good downhiller when you’re feeling punch drunk and exhausted.

So I hit a little rise and used it as a jump.

Which went horribly wrong.

I shot off the side of the road, riding a what amounts to a fast downhill nose-wheelie.

I should mention, I think, that the side of the road was a downhill slope with lots of both standing and fallen trees.

I should also mention that I was flying headfirst right toward a fallen tree.

I had a moment to think just before I hit the tree. Guess which of the three following thoughts occurred to me:

  1. “I had better protect my vital organs!”
  2. “I’m dead.”
  3. “Here comes my first DNF.”

If you guessed #2, you are correct. You are also correct if you guessed #3.

I hit the log good and hard, smashing my glasses and helmet, gashing my forehead and forearms, and knocking me goofy. Bob came crashing down through the trees, a benevolent chupacabra, checking to see if I was alive (and if not, whether my bike could be salvaged).

Again came the nausea. Again came the shakes. And then, a few minutes later, I was able to ride again.

We finished the race. With half an hour to spare.

Certainty of Death #3: Bike Failure at 50mph
I’ve talked about when my trusty 9-year-old road bike discombobulated at 50mph fairly recently, so won’t go into the whole story again right now. I will say this, though: Once again, the knowledge of immediate doom didn’t make me scream or cry or despair at the moment it was happening.

Once again, it was more of an “Oh, perfect” kind of reaction.

Hey, I’ve got an idea for a new tagline:

“Fat Cyclist: Facing Death with a Sardonic Smirk Since 1994″

What Have We Learned?
So here are the common elements I’m noticing about my brushes with doom.

  • I don’t fear death until I have time to. At the moment of emergency, I don’t recall ever being terrified. That comes later, when I have had time to think about how things could have turned out.
  • My life does not flash before my eyes. Does anyone really have their life flash before their eyes in moments of great crisis? It seems to me like that would be a pretty inconvenient time for a fast stroll through memory lane. In fact, I can’t think of a less convenient time to start having an introspective moment than when you’re trying to avoid death.
  • There’s no crazier mix of emotions than when you feel you just evaded death. You’re sitting there on the ground, alive. You should be dead, but you’re alive. So you’re elated and relieved. And then you realize that you should be dead or maimed, and you get freaked out and scared. If someone else was to blame, the rage and indignation kick in. If it was your own fault, the shame and humiliation have their say. And this whole emotional cocktail is amped up by more adrenaline than you usually have running through your veins in a month. No wonder you get the shakes and nausea.
  • Later that day: Providing I have a working bike, after a few minutes I’ve always been able to get back on and ride. It’s only a couple hours later that the full impact of what’s nearly happened hits me. And then the next time I ride — and the next time, and the next time, and the next time — I can’t get it out of my head. I’m a timid, nervous rider for weeks and weeks. Maybe the whole rest of the season.

I’m interested whether you’ve seen the same things in your scariest encounters.

Final Disclaimer
After writing all this, it occurs to me that I might not know what I’m talking about (wow, that would be really unusual). The fact is, in each of these circumstances I only thought I was going to die. Maybe when the big one comes, it’ll be completely different.

I’m not particularly anxious to find out.

PS: Twin Six — the designers  of the Fat Cyclist jersey — is having a $15 T-Shirt Sale starting Thursday. This is a good chance for you to pick up a very cool shirt (or three) at a very good price.

PPS: Today’s weight: 167.2

PPPS: I’ve worked out a great deal with the Fabulous Banjo Brothers: I’m going to be able to give EVERYONE who pre-orders a Fat Cyclist jersey a Special Fat Cyclist Edition Pocket Messenger Bag. You should note, however, that at this point well more than half of the 250 jerseys are now spoken for. And when we reach 250, we’re done (B7 contestants, don’t worry, I’m holding some in reserve for you, just in case you beat me). In other words, if you’re planning on getting a jersey, you should pre-order it. Thanks!

Exactly Sexy Enough for My Shirt

02.4.2007 | 11:08 pm

I know who the real star of today’s post is: the new Fat Cyclist jersey, ready to order now. So please don’t feel too horribly cheated if today’s post is essentially the same info you’ll find on the order form.

For those with short attention spans, here’s the quick version:

  • The jerseys are available to order now. Click here to go to the order form.
  • If you’re one of the first 40 100 people to order, you’ll get a price break ($55.00 instead of $60.00), free shipping, and some cool schwag from Banjo Brothers and Matisse & Jack’s (Bake-at-Home Energy Bars). (The Matisse & Jack’s guys were very generous and upped their promotion quantity from the original 40 to 70, but those are all spoken for too!)
  • The jerseys will be arriving in May.
  • The jerseys are very, very, awesome. Click on the Images in this post to see larger versions.

The Pitch
You’re riding your bike. People see your jersey, which says “Fat Cyclist” on it. And yet, paradoxically, this jersey actually bolsters your already overwhelmingly good looks, bringing you well into the smokin’ hot zone. You are now as irresistably attractive as you are athletic.

You don’t come across jerseys like that every day, my friend.

Designed and produced by the geniuses at Twin Six, The Fat Cyclist jersey identifies you as a Friend of Fatty, uses premium sublimated graphics, and is in short very likely to be your very favorite jersey ever.

Jersey Info
Twin Six designed and is producing this jersey, which is why it looks so darn cool. Furthermore, this is not one of those cheap flimsy jerseys race promoters give you to make you feel better about the exorbitant entry fee you just paid. It’s top quality stuff.

Here are the details:

  • 16 inch invisible zipper
  • Anti-Microbial Treatment
  • 100% Polyester Microfiber
  • Premium Sublimated Graphics
  • 3 back pockets
  • Sizes: S-3XL

The fit is between a Euro-cut and an American-cut (great for both road and dirt riders). Choose the size as if you would for a Pearl Izumi or Sugoi jersey, and you’ll be fine.

Just in case the jersey doesn’t fit, don’t worry. I’ll get you one that does. You’re dealing with me, not a fulfillment center run by someone you don’t know.

First 40 100 Orders: Free Stuff, Free Shipping, $5.00 Off
The Fat Cyclist jerseys are going to be arriving in May — just in time (in North America, anyway) for short-sleeve riding weather. I’ve got to pay for them right now, though, and could use a little help in that regard. So if you’re one of the first forty people to buy a Fat Cyclist jersey, I’m going to give you a price break, free shipping, and some excellent schwag. Here’s what you’ll get:

  • FREE Shipping. Yeah, even if you live outside the U.S. I figure it’s not your fault we’re not on the same continent, right?
  • $5.00 Discount. A top-quality, sexy jersey is already a good deal at $60.00, but it’s worth $5.00 to me to not have to put the up-front jersey costs on a credit card. If you saw the interest rates I pay on my credit cards, you’d see that this offer is made purely out of self-interest.
  • A FREE Banjo Brothers Pocket Messenger Bag. The Banjo Brothers Pocket Messenger Bag is a handy bag for unexpected errands, extra capacity, or a post-ride refreshment stop. Fits nicely in a jersey pocket or seat bag until needed ($4.99 value). And guess what: my good friends at Banjo Brothers tell me they’re cooking up a special “Fat Cyclist Edition” of this bag. Nice!
  • A FREE box of TrailBlaze Bake-at-Home Oatmeal Energy Bars, included with your order ($4.99 value, available to U.S. only, because the overseas shipping costs would kill me). I’ve talked before about how much I like these. Now you can try a box for free. Update: The 70 boxes of Matisse and Jack’s Energy Bars have all been spoken for.

So, to recap: if you’re one of the first 40 100 people to pre-order a Fat Cyclist jersey, you’ll pay $5.00 less than you normally would, you’ll get free shipping (which is worth another $5.00), and you’ll get a Banjo Brothers Pocket Messenger Bag, which is worth about $5.00.

I Anticipate Your Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Will you do a version of this jersey in womens’ sizing?
A. If I did, I’d have to order 250 of them. I just don’t think I’d sell that many. I’d love to be proved wrong, so if you want a woman-specific Fat Cyclist jersey, email me and get your friends to, too.

Q. When will the jerseys arrive?
A. In May, but we don’t know what day. I’ll ship ‘em as soon as I get ‘em.

Q. What’s with the colors and the horse? I thought your colors were purple and orange, and your logo was a cartoonish, paunchy guy on a bike.
A. The horse is a clydesdale — a perfect symbol / metaphor for the Fat Cyclist. I traded out purple for black because a purple and orange jersey looks like a clown outfit. Besides, the black goes better with all those black shorts you already own.

Q. So are you going to re-do your site with the new logo and colors?
A. Yep.

Q. What does the “201″ mean?
A. Originally we planned to put the number 200 there, which is the cutoff weight for clydesdales (i.e., “Fat Cyclists”). But I felt like going with the bare minimum number didn’t give you as great a value as I would like. So this shirt goes up to 201.

Q. What if it doesn’t fit or it’s defective or I don’t like it?
A. I’ll refund your money or do an exchange or whatever it takes to make the transaction right. Check out my eBay rating — I’m very proud of my 100% positive…oh wait. This isn’t eBay. Still, I’ll take care of you.

Q. So are you going to do t-shirts, long-sleeve jerseys, socks, stickers, and stuff?
A. If this jersey experiment turns out well (i.e., I don’t lose a vast amount of money) I’ll do other stuff. Stickers and t-shirts seem like a likely bet.

Q. How did you manage to come up with such an incredibly sexy jersey?
A. By thinking extremely sexy thoughts.

An Announcement, A Tease, and Two Thank-You’s

02.2.2007 | 1:13 pm

Those of you who follow the Fat Cyclist (by which I mean the blog, not me personally), know that I’ve been investigating having a Fat Cyclist jersey made.

More recently, I’ve been hinting at how cool this jersey is going to be and how excited I am to tell you all about it.

Well, as of late last night, I can finally tell you what’s going on.

Sort of.

When Stalking Pays
It’s been no secret at all since late last November when I put together my list of 50 Gift Ideas for Cyclists that I have become a fanboy of the jersey designs Twin Six has been coming up with.

What you may not have known is that back in December I started pestering them.

“Hey, you know, I’ve got this blog where I talk about cycling and stuff,” I told them, very convincingly, articulately, and — above all — frequently. “You should totally advertise on it and give me a jersey to give away in a contest.”

“OK, we’ll do it, on the condition you promise to stop emailing three times per hour,” they said.

“Fair deal,” I said. And that’s how the Twin Six ad and the Twin Six jersey contest appeared on this site.

Encouraged by the knowledge that they could be worn down, I then pressed my case. “You know what? I need a jersey designed and made for my blog. You guys make jerseys, right? You should design and make my jersey,” I said.

Twin Six compared the cost of designing a jersey and of getting a restraining order against me.

Turns out it was cheaper to do the jersey.

So yes, while it’s of course totally obvious by the time you’ve read this far, I still want to make the announcement official: Twin Six, the designers of the coolest jerseys on planet Earth, is designing and producing the Fat Cyclist Jersey.


I Should Probably Show You The Jersey Now, Shouldn’t I?
So, last night Twin Six emailed me the first round of jersey design ideas (the jerseys you see above, by the way, are the designs Twin Six sells in stores and stuff. Click ‘em for more info).

I expected to like them.

I didn’t, however, expect I’d be so giddily in love with them. Out of the four jersey designs they sent, I could have been perfectly happy with any one of them.

I contemplated picking one of them and saying, “That’s perfect. Let’s make it.”

But there were a couple of little things I wanted to make sure of.

  1. That I got the most awesome color combination possible. Red/Silver? Black/Blue? Red/Black? Orange/Black? Hard choices.
  2. I asked them to insert a reference to Dr. Lammler.

So you’re going to have to wait until Saturday or Monday to see what the jersey looks like.

Hint: It’s awesome-tastic.

Thank You #1
Have you seen how many photos have been submitted in this week’s Photo Contest? 142, so far. And I love a lot of them. So a couple of thank-you’s are in order:

  1. Thanks, Kenny. My friend and riding buddy Kenny Jones of Kenny’s Photo is the one sponsoring this contest. Please show him you appreciate it by giving him some love — as his ad says, use the “Fatty” code at checkout and get $10 off your order. That’s a screaming deal.
  2. Thanks, Everyone. I always enjoy the comments in this blog and especially the work people put into comments on contest days, but having this huge number of really great photos to look at has been a real pleasure.

Hey, just for fun, here’s a small sample of some of the photos I like:

(Hey, nice jersey!)

Awesome perspective, and I love the way the road and sky meet.

Look at this guy fly, on a ‘cross bike yet!

It’s the smile that makes this one great.

I like the moody, old-school-through-and-through feel of this one.

If you’re going to have a crash like this, the only thing that can make it worthwhile is if someone caught it with a camera. Believe me, I know:

Having this photo is worth the price. Easy for me to say now.

Thank You #2
I’ve done a lot of begging for votes for the Bloggies awards this week, and I appreciate everyone who’s voted for me. If you haven’t, today’s the last day. 

I should point out that the other candidates for the Best Kept Secret award are all pretty dang cool. In fact, I have bookmarked three of them as new frequent reads. Check them out:

  • To Whom it May Concern: You know how I sometimes write open letters? That’s what this blog does all the time.
  • The Gilded Moose: This is the blog I would (try to) write if I knew anything about famous people. Excellent satire.
  • Woof Woofington: OK, I’ll be honest, I just can’t get past the premise of this one (a dog writing a blog). I’m sure it’s a fine blog, but I don’t think I’m the target audience (as a child, I had a very traumatic experience while watching The Shaggy D.A., and now get shakes and shudders at the mere thought of talking dogs).
  • Confessions of a Pioneer Woman: This is the blog I would (try to)write if I lived on a farm. And were a woman. And knew what “hiney tingle” meant.

We’ll find out who won March 12. I predict it will be me, because a comedy blog about the cycling lifestyle for the chronically overweight has huge appeal to the general populace.

PS: Today’s weight: 168.0.

PPS: I recommend checking back Saturday to see if I’ve posted the final jersey design. If I haven’t posted it by then, I’ll definitely post it on Monday. At which point, you can bet I’m going to be begging for some pre-order love.

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