Special LiveBlog Event: Reading the Speedplay Ad

01.28.2010 | 10:47 am

I love reading Velonews, for two excellent reasons. The first is to marvel at Lennard Zinn, their Technical Writer. Did you know that he now writes the entire magazine, front to back, every single issue? It’s true! Sometimes, because he starts to feel a little bad, he uses a pseudonym, but trust me: Lennard is writing it.

bibshorts.jpgThe second reason I read Velonews is for the ads. I love the ads. Like the one of the guy in the bibshorts, shown to the right here (click the ad to see a larger version).

Looking at it, I can’t help but wonder:

  • Did the photographer not understand that bibshorts are for biking, not running?
  • Does “Design to follow the bio-mechanical movement of the rider” mean what I think it means? Specifically, that since these bike shorts — like all bike shorts — are made of stretchy fabric, that when you move, the bike shorts will also move? Wouldn’t it be awesome if they somehow neglected to include that feature and instead created bike shorts that were perfectly inflexible? They’re bike shorts and a body cast!
  • You’re going to call out the “Gel leg gripper” as a feature? Really? I mean, if you’ve really run out of things to talk about but still need to fill up space, it’s customary to say “Much, much more!”
  • If your shorts are all about the details, you may want to consider this detail: your leg gripper is having a tourniquet effect on the model, so that the part of the leg above the gripper is ballooning out dangerously. How soon ’til it pops? We can only speculate.
  • I hesitate to bring up this final point, but the bibshorts model seems undecided about where to put a certain part of himself. Whereas most cyclists go either left or right, the model has gone with vertical. Or perhaps he’s just really excited about getting work. Or maybe it’s a feature of the shorts?

The ad then finishes up with the peeled-up cross-section of the chamois, which I believe is required for inclusion in all bike shorts ads by the powerful Bicycle Ad Consortium (BAC).

I Am Not Afraid of A Challenge

The VeloNews 2010 Buyer’s Guide (thanks for all that guidance, Lennard!) is chock-full of ads I love. I look at them, learn serious, important things about the world of cycling from them, and move on.

However, there is one particular ad that has defied me. That has not allowed me to observe, snark, and move on.

It is the full-page Speedplay ad on page 39 (click the ad to see a larger version):


Yes, that’s really the ad.

When I first saw it, I panicked. Then I turned the page. Then I turned back. Is this really an ad with a full page of text?

And not just text, but white-on-red text?

And not just white-on-red text, but in a tall, cramped font?

And not just white-on-red text in a tall cramped font, but all rammed together in a single, extremely wide paragraph?

Yes, that it what it is. Which makes me think: they do not want anyone to read this ad. It is so long and horrible to look at that Speedplay must have some reason for not wanting anyone to plow through the whole thing.

Like, maybe buried somewhere in there is instructions on how to find Jimmy Hoffa. Or the location of a vault containing untold riches. Or a recipe for an indescribably delicious key lime pie.

Regardless, I am confident that nobody, to this point, has ever read the entirety of this ad.

But I am going to, right now. And I am going to liveblog the experience.

The liveblog begins now.

05:30 – I’m settling down with the magazine. I’ve got a bowl of cold cereal (Honey Bunches of Oats) and half a grapefruit to sustain me. Will it be enough? I do not know.

05:35 – So far, I have discerned that Speedplay is serious about making the best pedals. Which is good news, because I do not want my pedal manufacturer to go about making the best pedals in some kind of jaunty, devil-may-care fashion.

05:42 – The next sentence has had me scratching my head in confusion for the past seven minutes: “We obsess about speed, power, biomechanics and security.” Who, in this case, is “we?” Do they mean everyone at Speedplay? Or just the guys who created the ad? Or are they trying to draw me in with them, to make me part of their “we?” I’m not ready for that kind of commitment, Speedplay.

05:47 – I just realized that both the Speedplay ad and the bibshorts ad mention biomechanics. Which causes me to think: “biomechanics” is the “ipsum lorem” of the bike ad world. I wonder if the BAC enforces the use of the word “biomechanics” in every ad. I intend to investigate. Later.

05:58 - Speedplay evidently, in addition to speed, power, biomechanics and security, also obsesses over user-friendliness, function, comfort, and durability. This causes me to wonder a few things.

  1. Does Speedplay obsess about other things, too? Like, perhaps, having a complete Pokemon action figure set? Or always drinking the same brand of soda, no matter what? Or putting their clothes on in a certain order? The fact that they obsess about this many things indicates to me that they probably obsess about other things too.
  2. Assuming (quite reasonably) that Speedplay is in fact obsessing over a whole crapload of stuff, have they considered that perhaps it’s time to get help?
  3. Isn’t “function” really just an umbrella term for all the other things they’re obsessing about? It seems that they can maybe take this one off the list. This could be an important first step toward being less obsessive.

06:06 – Speedplay has now stopped telling me about the things it (they?) obsess about. Now they have moved on to telling me things they want me to see, know, feel, and so forth. For example, they want me to know that they have rethought pedals from the ground up. Which — since pedals don’t really ever touch the ground at all — seems to indicate they have more re-thinking to do.

06:09 – My cereal bowl is empty. My grapefruit is nothing but a juiceless rind, all juice squozen from it. And yet I am only 9% of the way through this ad. I shall fetch more cereal directly, and intend to open a 2-litre Diet Coke with Lime, which I will drink directly from the Bottle.

06:11 – OK, I think I can continue. Where was I? Ah yes. Speedplay wants me to feel how much lighter their pedals are compared to others. But then, alas, they do not actually make any comparisons at all. So I’m beginning to think Speedplay is toying with me.

06:14 – Speedplay is now telling me how aerodynamic their pedal is. Which brings up a question: Is there any cyclist, in the entire world, who is so fast and rides in such a perfect position that his pedal aerodynamics is a factor, but who also is not already sponsored? Honestly, in my entire cycling career, never has it occurred to me that I could have won a race if only my pedals weren’t holding me back so much.

06:17 – I think I should mention, by the way, that I actually do use Speedplay pedals. And I have for more than ten years. They’re fantastic road pedals and I highly recommend them. But this ad is making me think of switching.

06:20 - I am now on the fourth sentence in a row that begins with “We want.” I’m beginning to develop a mental picture of the Speedplay personality, and the two dominating attributes are:

  • Obsessive
  • Needy

06:24 - Speedplay apparently now wants me to measure their stack height to see how much closer my foot is positioned to the spindle for better power transmission. Which, frankly, seems like a lot of them to ask of me. Do they really expect me to measure the stack height on their pedal/cleat combination (like I have the equipment for that), then go do the same thing with other pedal manufacturers and get back to them with my findings? Measure it yourself, Speedplay. I’m busy right now, trying to make sense of an incomprehensibly long, obsessive, needy, and demanding ad.

07:18 - Sorry, fell asleep. I need to start crossing out the sentences I’ve read so I don’t keep losing my place.

07:23 – Speedplay has just told me, and I quote: “We want you to see how much further you can safely lean into a turn without scraping the pedals.” Which means, if I understand them correctly, that they want me to corner harder and harder until I either chicken out or crash on everyone else’s pedals, and then do the same thing on theirs. And once I’ve done that — well, of course I’ll be dead long before I complete this battery of tests, but suppose I managed to survive — I will ascertain that Speedplay lets me lean in much further.

Speedplay, I believe you are asking too much of your prospective customers.

07:40 – Been drinking too much Diet Coke. Had to take a break.

07:42 - Oh good, Speedplay has stopped asking me to conduct experiments that require sensitive equipment and an engineering degree, are life-threatening and reckless, or both. Now they want me to notice the stuff that is actually really good about their pedals: they’re double sided so they’re easy to get into, and they lock in nice and secure.

Which, you know, is what some people might call their “key differentiator.” And it might be all the information this ad really required. Really clever of them to bury it it in the exact middle of the ad.

07:49 – Speedplay wants us to see that their premium pedals use rustproof stainless steel and Ti components “for durability and aesthetics.” Which makes me ask: just your premium pedals? So your low-end pedals are going to be ugly, won’t last, and will rust? Sign me up!

07:59 – Speedplay, now into the final third of its ad, is telling us that the “pedal’s engagement edges are made of hardened alloy steel instead of plastic.” That’s nice, I suppose, but no more reassuring than if Trek said, “Our carbon fiber bikes are made of carbon fiber instead of aluminum foil.” Saying “we didn’t use crappy materials” shouldn’t be considered a selling point.

08:05 – I don’t think I’m going to make it. This is just too darned hard. Tell my kids I love them.

08:08 – NO! I will not quit! I am going to finish reading this ad! No matter what.

08:22 – I keep trying to make sense of this sentence: “We want you to see for yourself that Speedplay pedals offer an unmatched package of performance features and benefits but not at the expense of strength, safety, or functionality.” I’ve read that sentence nine times now, and just can’t figure it out. Do performance features and benefits usually come at the expense of strength, safety and functionality? Aren’t performance features and benefits part of strength, safety and functionality?

And most important of all, why do Speedplay pedals come in unmatched packages? Like, do they come with two left pedals, one of which is red and the other which is turquoise? And maybe only one cleat?

Please, Speedplay. Please start providing matched packages.

08:32 – Finally, I am at the last sentence: “We want you to know that we’re serious about making the world’s most technically advanced pedal systems.”

Hey, waitasec. That’s what they said at the beginning of the ad, just longer and more obtuse.

08:36 – I did it. I finished the ad. It took 3:02, but I did it. I pushed through, keeping my eye on the finish line and the glory that comes with it.

Sure, there were moments when I thought I was a goner. But I gritted my teeth and kept reading.

Someday, I will tell my grandchildren. And they will be proud of grandpa, and that he — and he alone — read the entire Speedplay ad.


  1. Comment by km | 01.28.2010 | 11:00 am

    Wow, I applaud your endurance, tenacity and great abiltiy to comsume large amounts of Diet Coke with Lime and only have to take one potty break. You are a true mountain amoungst mole hill ad readers. If your quads are half as big as your reading ability you truly are an Adonis…..or Merkxx like in stature.

  2. Comment by km | 01.28.2010 | 11:01 am

    Please forgive my spelling……..”consume” as opposed to “comsume.” Jeez, I’m not a celebrated blogger like Fatty, give me a break.

  3. Comment by Mike P CT | 01.28.2010 | 11:06 am

    Nice one. At least they’re not passionate about pedals like this lot: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bz2-49q6DOI

  4. Comment by leroy | 01.28.2010 | 11:19 am

    Does that pedal come in an SPD model with reflectors and in colors to coordinate with my bar streamers?

    All that text and the big questions are left unanswered.

  5. Comment by Rose | 01.28.2010 | 11:30 am

    Oh my, one of your funniest posts EVER.

  6. Comment by Allan | 01.28.2010 | 11:47 am

    Maybe Lennard Zinn will tackle your suggestions for pedal testing in the next issue.

    Hey, how about the gold bike in the same issue that sells for $250K but doesn’t have gears or brakes!

  7. Comment by Grizzly Adam | 01.28.2010 | 11:49 am

    I went blind after seeing the Speedplay ad, and therefore could not continue reading.

  8. Comment by Mikeonhisbike | 01.28.2010 | 11:56 am

    I like how the bib shorts ad contains the word carbon in it. Do they think cyclists won’t buy anything that doesn’t contain carbon? No carbon in my shorts thank you very much.

  9. Comment by Paul H | 01.28.2010 | 11:58 am


    415 words
    1930 characters

    Live Blog of Adv.:
    1421 words
    6475 characters

  10. Comment by Cyclin' Missy | 01.28.2010 | 11:58 am

    Sounds like you’re ready for the marathon!

  11. Comment by Johnny909 | 01.28.2010 | 12:02 pm

    I actually like that ad.

    All this sh1t – in this simple pedal.

    Could possibly look a bit better if there was a little more white space, maybe 2 less lines of text, but a good ad nonetheless

  12. Comment by Barbara | 01.28.2010 | 12:03 pm

    Despite the warning the title should have given me (I had forgotten the title in the midst of trying to read that white on red huge paragraph), I laughed out loud (aka lol) when I got to “I am going to liveblog the experience.” How DO you think of these things?

    You are a brave and funny man. I cannot imagine drinking that much Diet Coke after grapefruit.

  13. Comment by AfricanSingle | 01.28.2010 | 12:07 pm

    As you said, white text on a red background in that funny tall cramped font…… you weren’t meant to read it! You’re just meant to look at it and be impressed. Great post. Hopefully their ad writers read this blog.

  14. Comment by centurion | 01.28.2010 | 12:11 pm

    Seems you left a lot out, like the baseball glove part, is there going to be a part 2?

  15. Comment by Ryan in the Rock | 01.28.2010 | 12:18 pm

    What is most impressive about this blog is that not only did you thoroughly liveblog this experience, you logged 3:02 training for your not-so-much ironman. Props to fatty for multi-tasking.

  16. Comment by Erin | 01.28.2010 | 12:22 pm

    Aw. That poor, unassuming ad copywriter…

  17. Comment by xtine | 01.28.2010 | 12:27 pm

    Thank you, Fatty. I remember when I first saw that ad, and I had the same thoughts as you. In a word: “Seriously?”

    Seriously ridiculous.

  18. Comment by bikemike | 01.28.2010 | 12:27 pm

    both you and speedplay have waaaaay too much time on your hands.

  19. Comment by Chris | 01.28.2010 | 12:29 pm

    You’ve been set up. They clearly knew you would fall for such a trap. Somewhere a Speedplay marketing team is cackling with glee and reading your site. Ahh, publicity!

  20. Comment by BAC Spokesman | 01.28.2010 | 12:29 pm

    You just don’t understand biomechanics.

    Oh, and Paul H (at 11:58am) has too much time on his hands.

  21. Comment by dug | 01.28.2010 | 12:30 pm

    “We want you to see for yourself that Speedplay pedals offer an unmatched package of performance features and benefits but not at the expense of strength, safety, or functionality.”

    i think you misread this sentence. they aren’t saying that the pedals offer unmatched performance features and benefits at the expense of strength, safety, or functionality.

    they are saying that they don’t want you to read the sentence at the expense of strength, safety, or functionality.

    so the pedals are fine. the sentence is incredibly dangerous and debilitating.

  22. Comment by Phill | 01.28.2010 | 12:33 pm

    Haha, just like the ad, I think this is the first time I haven’t been able to read an entire Fatty blog post.. you lost me at 6:06. Still made me smile though!

  23. Comment by T Foster | 01.28.2010 | 12:40 pm

    I’m obsessed; I want…They got me.

  24. Comment by Clydesteve | 01.28.2010 | 12:46 pm

    I got a little panicky when they claimed they were serious about engagement security.

    (I shouldn’t use paragraph breaks when commenting on this ad, and niether should you have, BTW.)

    I mean, is my pedal manufacturer really entitled to be in on securing a marriage partner for my daughter?

  25. Comment by Joy | 01.28.2010 | 12:46 pm

    This was hysterically funny. And I’ve always wondered how to spell “squozen”. Thanks for making me laugh out loud-good for the soul

  26. Comment by Dave | 01.28.2010 | 12:56 pm

    You are a better man than I, Fatty. I made it to “micro-adjustable range of float and pinpoint accuracy of cleat setup” and had a nervous breakdown. My doctor has advised me not to finish the ad.

  27. Comment by Chuck | 01.28.2010 | 12:59 pm

    I ride Speedplays on both my road and tri bikes. Boy, Speedplay sure wants a lot from me!! “We want you”, 14 TIMES in one ad?? AND, my eyes are buring from the white font on red background. This is SO obviously an association (of some kind, BAC?) award winning ad. Maybe, they could used the same red that is in the ad on their “red” carpet at the awards ceremony.

    just sayin…

  28. Comment by GrizzlyAdam | 01.28.2010 | 1:00 pm

    And apparently Speedplay pedals now talk to us!

  29. Comment by Clydesteve | 01.28.2010 | 1:04 pm

    I can see that an aerodynamic shaped pedal is aerodynamic if you keep your feet flat, like your spin class instructor, but isn’t a solid round pedal with no through holes kind of a wind block if you are not pedaling squares?

    (I am assuming that you have drilled lightening holes in your shoes, and your feet, as I have, so the wind slips through them as you ankle.)

  30. Comment by MattC | 01.28.2010 | 1:05 pm

    Isn’t this add for Speedplay ZERO pedals? (that is the picture anyway). I have a pair of X5’s and X1’s (X5’s are choromoly steel spindle, X1’s are ti). So the better the pedal, the lower the number. So the Zero SHOULD be made out of uranium or something. Oh wait..that would be incredibly heavy…so maybe that would be the X7 model (super heavy but good for winter riding…all that radiation keeps your feet nice and toasty, sans toe warmers). The Zero should be made of Heliumonium…Light, midly radioactive, yet attracive and functional.

  31. Comment by Grizzly Adam | 01.28.2010 | 1:06 pm

    Who is this above impostor using my interweb handle?

  32. Comment by Hannah Handpainted | 01.28.2010 | 1:12 pm

    This made me laugh so hard. I can’t remember laughing like that for a long time. And I don’t give a damn about Speedplay’s pedals.

    Then I read the Happiness post and that made me cry. How’s that for a manic response? Laugh at bad graphic design, cry at happiness?

  33. Comment by Frank | 01.28.2010 | 1:17 pm

    I have always ridden LOOK pedals and I think I will stick to them for a while to come. They never asked me to do anything for them so that is a plus. Also the Speedplay pedal may be light, but what about the cleat?

  34. Comment by Ronk | 01.28.2010 | 1:19 pm

    The VERY FIRST thing I thought of when I saw the bib short ad was you. You didn’t let me down.

  35. Comment by jp18d | 01.28.2010 | 1:27 pm

    key lime pie = 1 bottle of Nellie and Joe’s key lime juice… then follow the instructions on the label..

  36. Comment by Kris the Colts Fan | 01.28.2010 | 1:30 pm

    P-dubb had a link to your blog and now I know why–hilarious.

  37. Comment by MattC | 01.28.2010 | 1:42 pm

    OH…and now that someone has actually READ the entire add (which was obviously never intended to happen), Speedplay is probably very busy re-writing the entire thing, using their crack legal team for the vergabe, thus making it even HARDER to read. I have heard thru the grapevine that they will be using hieroglyphics this time, with teal type and a paisley background.

  38. Comment by MattC | 01.28.2010 | 1:42 pm

    uhm..that was “verbage”, not “vergabe”..though in hindsight maybe that was the correct word after all.

  39. Comment by vipershark | 01.28.2010 | 1:51 pm

    Fatty, clearly the bib shorts model cannot put the certain part of his anatomy to the left or to the right because the leg gripper is having an effect on him (other than the tourniquet effect).

  40. Comment by mercator | 01.28.2010 | 1:56 pm

    Maybe your pedals never touch the ground. Mine have, they have the scuff marks to prove it. And, yes, it did hurt a little.

  41. Comment by neonmouse | 01.28.2010 | 1:56 pm

    LoL, I think it took me that long to get through this post but it made me laugh – so it was totally worth it! ;)

  42. Comment by Hat | 01.28.2010 | 2:16 pm

    Are those gel leg grippers, or are you just happy to see me?

  43. Comment by Joel P. | 01.28.2010 | 2:55 pm

    “Honestly, in my entire cycling career, never has it occurred to me that I could have won a race if only my pedals weren’t holding me back so much.”
    A BIG thank you for giving me a new excuse for this upcoming season.
    Joel P.

  44. Comment by Jill2 | 01.28.2010 | 3:24 pm

    You mean he’s got his snipe going straight up?

  45. Comment by Rokrider | 01.28.2010 | 3:25 pm

    Well this post should certainly lay to rest any notions that Fatty has “changed”. Vintage FC. Ranks right up there with “An Open Letter to Assos” in my opinion. I just hope Dr. Lämmler graces us with a comment or two.

    PS: I now have a new favorite saying: “Going Vertical”

  46. Comment by Mike Roadie | 01.28.2010 | 3:29 pm

    Someone thought that was good copy…….seriously!

  47. Comment by kerry | 01.28.2010 | 4:11 pm

    I too am now going to work “going vertical” into as many conversations as possible today, whether or not it applies. I love that you looked closely enough to notice- excellent attention to detail! I wonder if he did it because he was afraid of getting his caught in the gel leg gripper, although in fairness (and vulgarity) since it’s halfway up his bib, perhaps going vertical is his only choice when wearing shorts. Do you think that’s photoshopped, a la beer bimbo boobies?

  48. Comment by Decker | 01.28.2010 | 4:24 pm

    I would never use those lollipop pedals…LOOK forever!

  49. Comment by TXBuckeye | 01.28.2010 | 4:41 pm

    OK. I have a question. If the cleat is fully recessed (which they felt was pretty important since they told us twice), doesn’t that mean that when you are securely engaged (with the pedal, that is), the pedal is pretty much recessed in your shoe? And if that is the case, does it really matter how aerodynamic it is?

    Wow. I believe you are absolutely correct. – FC

  50. Comment by Lisa | 01.28.2010 | 4:58 pm

    You’ve sqouzen all the sequential belly laughs I ever thought possible out of me!

    If you don’t win multiple bloggies, I’m gonna, gonna, I don’t know what I’m gonna do. IMHO This is Best Writing, Best Sports Blog, Best Transparent Blog, Best Humor Blog, Best Sharing Blogger’s Life Journey and Best Philanthropy Results from a Non-Philanthropy Blog all in one place.

    Thanks so much.

    PS Wonder if you ever have or are going to address why bike shorts should all be black and especially_NOT_RED?

  51. Comment by Frankenhip | 01.28.2010 | 5:11 pm

    while I was reading the part “…your leg gripper is having a tourniquet effect on the model, so that the part of the leg above the gripper is ballooning out dangerously…” I was thinking – if the leg grippers are doing this to that skinny dude’s thighs – I don’t ever want to see what they would look like on me.

  52. Comment by Annie | 01.28.2010 | 6:04 pm

    Not to mention that he has no hair … anywhere …

  53. Comment by Randall Smith | 01.28.2010 | 6:22 pm

    Fatty, thanks for taking one for all of us on the Speedplay ad. My take is that Speedplay needs to either pony up for a real ad agency or just quit advertising. I bought Speedplays because friends told me they were great. I bought them. I love them. I may never switch. But not because of migraine inducing ads like that… how disappointing from such a cool company.

    Loved your live blog, Fatty. There is no end to your creativity. Keep up the good work.

  54. Comment by Kathy McElhaney | 01.28.2010 | 6:23 pm

    Someday, I will tell my grandchildren. And they will be proud of grandma, and that she – along with many other Fat Cyclist readers — read the entire Liveblog Event of Fatty Reading the Speedplay ad.

  55. Comment by Michelle McLaren | 01.28.2010 | 6:34 pm

    I too was laughing out loud while reading this. I even laughed so hard I got tears in my eyes. It felt great, thanks Fatty!

  56. Comment by Hammy | 01.28.2010 | 7:10 pm

    Wow 3:02! That’s almost as long as it took me to install these engineering marvels on my wifes bike. Now I want some.

  57. Comment by Lisa from Australia | 01.28.2010 | 7:10 pm


  58. Comment by Frank | 01.28.2010 | 8:35 pm

    This ad also appeared in Bicycling Magazine (Nov 09) on page 75. I remembered this ad, not because of the content which I’ve stopped reading after 2 lines but the big red rectangle pointing to the pedal and logo which caught my attention (and yours!). That is exactly what advertising suppose to accomplish.

    Anyways, your writing is funny as hell and I’ve got funny looks from my coworkers when I was laughing out loud in my cubicle.

  59. Comment by Razor | 01.28.2010 | 8:36 pm

    I need to lose about 20 kg before using speedplay pedals is going to make any difference to me. think I ‘ll stick with the bog standard Shimanos at the mo.

    Where were your kids while you did this????

    You know what? That’s none of your business. And it’s creepy of you to ask. – FC

  60. Comment by Danielle | 01.28.2010 | 8:37 pm

    I’m pretty sure you already pointed out where the “unmatched package of performance ” is in the 1st ad. Hysterical…

  61. Comment by AndyCarp | 01.28.2010 | 8:51 pm

    I used to work as a designer in advertising and got sick of having to lay out ads with nonsensical and trite/cliche-ridden writing and bad photography (stock photos or provided by the client’s photographer friend or child), trying to sell something that someone only remotely might need.

    Both of these ads remind me of that experience. At least they used a bit of white space. I can see the pitch meeting now. Speedplay marketing tells the agency account person all about the attributes of their pedals. They take copious notes, take them back to the design staff and the writers and tell them that they have to make it jazzy, yet simple, cool yet hot, blah, blah, blah. Then they come up with this crazy layout. I really have to wonder who designs most cycling product ads since I’ve seen few that are well done. The writing is usually abhorrent, the photography poorly done and the layouts amateurish. No wonder we can’t be taken seriously.

    Nice Job Eldon. You nailed them and they deserve it!

  62. Comment by Juls | 01.28.2010 | 9:08 pm

    I did stop on this page in my issue of VeloNews (I hate that is once every 2 months now. Boo), and I thought – groovy…an optical illusion.

    So, I squared my shoulders and stared at it for 3 minutes….letting my eyes loose focus.

    Finally, I saw it! A palm tree.

  63. Comment by Joby Oreta | 01.28.2010 | 9:20 pm

    I hate Diet Coke with lime!!! Regular Diet Coke is so much better!!

  64. Comment by courtney | 01.28.2010 | 11:11 pm

    Outstanding :D

  65. Comment by Raymond | 01.28.2010 | 11:29 pm

    Somebody got paid overtime.

  66. Comment by BionicCyclist | 01.29.2010 | 12:46 am

    You are a truly funny man Fatty!
    When will a bib cast be available on your website?


  67. Comment by John | 01.29.2010 | 1:51 am

    Fatty, I’m glad you went to the trouble of reading all the way through that ad, because I really couldn’t be bothered finishing the first sentence. Life’s too short.

    I did read all the way through your liveblog – that was worth the effort. I thank you.

    I don’t thank you for drawing my attention to that feature (you know which one) of the bibshorts photo. I really could have done without that.

  68. Comment by buckythedonkey | 01.29.2010 | 1:54 am

    So, have you received your free pedals yet?

  69. Comment by TimD | 01.29.2010 | 4:37 am

    Still not managed to read it all the way through. And who wants an unmatched package of performance? I don’t want my left foot trying to go faster than my right.

  70. Comment by Penzance Steve | 01.29.2010 | 5:39 am

    Yay – Fatty is Back (not that he’d ever been away). I love it when you turn your critical observations onto all the weird stuff out the in the world of bikes.

  71. Comment by Jeff Kamp | 01.29.2010 | 6:52 am

    Awesome!!! I just received my Bicycling magazine in the mail last night. When I ran across the Speedplay ad I couldn’t stop laughing about your post.

  72. Comment by wvcycling | 01.29.2010 | 7:20 am

    Just like the speedplay ad was a TLDR’er, so was your “liveblog” about it. Seriously. TLDR.

    Speedplay makes great pedals from what I hear (or everyone is brainwashed), but once you add in the weight of their forklift pallet sized cleat, it does negate their statements about weight… I say get them for comfort. Advertize about comfort. (I use look based pedals)

    Traditional print media is dead and VeloNews product reviews are taken with a grain of salt at my household. They do have pretty pictures though.

  73. Comment by Cardiac Kid | 01.29.2010 | 7:33 am

    You probably could have finshed in 2:58 if your pedals weren’t holding you back.

  74. Comment by Coby | 01.29.2010 | 12:34 pm

    Elden. I am home sick with a nasty upper respiratory infection. You had me laughing so hard I almost stopped breathing. Thank you. This made my day!

  75. Comment by eclecticdeb | 01.29.2010 | 2:23 pm


  76. Comment by Zed | 01.29.2010 | 7:49 pm

    That feat of endurance would rival ANY ironman triathlon. I hope you pulled a serious RECOVERY session when you got done.

  77. Comment by GJ Jackie | 01.30.2010 | 5:15 pm

    Did no one else notice what wimpy thighs that model has? My quads are bigger than his!

  78. Comment by Dobovedo | 01.30.2010 | 11:25 pm

    I read it too! I read it too! Took me 3:12 though. Oh well.. PODIUM!

  79. Comment by Razor | 01.31.2010 | 9:16 pm

    So, has Speedplay sent you your complementary pair of pedals to trial, yet?

    Demand a pink set for The Runner.

  80. Comment by Christian | 02.1.2010 | 2:04 pm

    You’re a better man than me. I’m in advertising (a creative to boot) and I couldn’t muster up the strength or courage to plow through that ad.

  81. Comment by Rie | 02.1.2010 | 11:20 pm

    Great post. Way to stick it to all those who doubt your readiness for the marathon. :) Personally, I couldn’t get past the Orbea ad. The one where Sammy Sanchez is giving a thumbs up in his wrinkly Euskaltel polo with his gold medal seemingly hanging in the wrong direction…

  82. Comment by Eric Johnson | 02.2.2010 | 9:57 pm

    funny. but this post and all the comments out-obsessed ‘em.

  83. Comment by Bicycle Bill | 02.3.2010 | 4:10 am

    I also read the entire Speedplay ad. I did not feel the need for new pedals. I especially did not feel the need for new Speedplay pedals.

    Instead, I changed into my cycling clothing (including my beloved pair of Avocet cycling shoes), took my 1978 Trek 700 down off of the rack, placed the bike on the rollers, clipped into my MKS quill pedals with the Christophe toeclips and Binda leather straps, and ripped off about 45 minutes or so while watching reruns of M*A*S*H on the bigscreen.


  84. Comment by honoluludon | 08.13.2010 | 11:03 am

    Bicycle Bill – talk about tripping through time with names like Avocet shoes, MKS, Christophe, and Binda. are any of them still in business. Hasn’t that Trek rusted through after all the roller sweat dripping on it?

  85. Comment by Mark | 08.14.2010 | 7:12 pm

    Did Sharon or Richard sue you yet?

  86. Comment by Mark | 08.14.2010 | 7:13 pm

    The pedal has to talk because nobody stays at that company for long. Every time I call to order something they have a new staff. HAHA!

  87. Pingback by Fat Cyclist » Blog Archive » Floyd and Kimmage | 02.9.2011 | 12:50 pm

    [...] should do is go back and read it again, this time liveblogging the thing. And I don’t mean a jokey liveblog, either. I mean that as I (re)read it, I should detail what I think of the question and [...]


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