Wednesday, December 31

good riddance

The local rag, The Stranger, put out an end of the year list of things that have run their course and are no longer cool. They call it, "your 15 minutes are up." Included in the list was fixed gear bikes. To quote: It's simple math: Take the amount of money you save by buying a fixed-gear bike. Add that to the extra cachet you acquire by riding it around. Now subtract the cost of fixing your broken bones when you crash and don't have health insurance. The economics don't compute. Fixed-gear bikes, like Hummers, won't pencil out in the New Year's new economy.

This comes as great news to Arnica. He hates fixed gear bikes. They are the stinky cheese of the bicycle elitist's who think us spandex wearing, helmet donning, gear using, bell ringing, fender having, organized ride participating folks to not be very cool. [did that sentence make any sense?]

Fixed gear bikes in Seattle never made any sense to Arnica. Seattle is a place where you turn a corner and face a quarter mile incline with a ten degree grade on every other street. There are too many hills for anyone to have a bicycle with one gear and no freewheel (no coasting). Plus, as uncool as us dorks in spandex are, it is much less cool to dismount your bike and walk up a hill. Gawd made granny gears for a reason.

Imagine your old 1979 Honda Civic that you drove in college to your drug dealer's house. Now, imagine welding the stick shift so it is stuck in third gear. Now, imagine driving that car and not using your clutch. Now drive that car up and down the hills of your favorite town. That is what riding a fixed gear bike is like. Sound dumb? it is.

Arnica has heard that riding a fixed gear bike makes you feel more connected to the road. You bet you feel more connected to the road when your face is squished on it.

Arnica has many friends who love fixies and single gear bikes. And Arnica expects to receive some nasty notes about this post, but this is fine with Arnica. He is eager to hear one reason why fixies are good bikes to ride in Seattle that doesn't include trashing modern bikes or involve the coolness factor.

And stop doing those ridiculous track stands in the middle of the street. Gosh, you are so cool because you know how to balance on your bike when at a stop. Dismount like the rest of us. And while you are at it, stop at red lights, slow down for pedestrians. Be safe, and stop trying to be cool. And wear a goddamn helmet, you hipster asshole. Keep the track bikes on the track.

Gears Rock!

Now, all this being said, if Arnica lived in the flatness of Kansas, he would probably own several fixed gear bikes, and would be such a fixie that this post would piss him off to no end. It kinda already does.


Mark Iverson said...

Fixies are stupid. As the bumper sticker on the espresso machine at the bicycle messenger hangout known as Monorail Espresso says, "No hipsters allowed. Your fixed gear bike is not a fashion accessory"

Arnica Montana said...

love it