Saturday, May 28, 2011

U S A! U S A!

Although I already know everything, I still seem to learn new stuff as I get older. When you get older you slowly begin to realise that you might not be one of the few immortal humans after all. Because, at 36, in 2011, I might only have some 61 years of youth left, I've come to the conclusion that life is too short to be wasted not trying out new stuff.

I used to think that I'm definitely a roadie. But then again, there was a certain period when I used to perceive myself as a goth. Then there are the bohemian years, the punk period, and the (fortunately) short period of trying to mimic an average student, to mention only a few. Anyway, after seeing lots of pictures of mountain bikes and even some videos of people riding them, I've gotten really curious to find out what it feels like to actually ride one. This is where my new friend, Scott, from USA comes in:

I think his last name is Strike, although it might also be Limited, or even G-Zero. I'm not so up to date with these American and/or rap names. They're all cool names though. Definitely cooler than mine (it is Teboil B. Ryynikäinen from Suomussalmi, just a typical Finnish name, in case you insist).

This is a classic bicycle full of the latest HMF crabon fibré full suspension hi-tech Scandium USA Scott competitive technology from 2001 and did I mention the Scandium rear fork already. If only I'd know what Scandium is, or weren't too lazy to google it out.

Anyhow, it definitely is exciting to find new aspects in bicycling. The bottom bracket is higher from the ground than I've gotten used to, the angles are different, the tyres are wide enough to fit any self-respecting tractor and make a funny noise on the pavement. There's the comfort of suspension!

After having gotten used on the road bike to the strict discipline of pedaling as efficiently as possible down (and up) long stretches of even road, it seems wildly exhilarating to ride this bike. Suddenly, the average speed doesn't seem to be a major objective any more. The knobby tyres and suspension seem to say "Get off the road!", "Play around!", "Please, jump off something!".

I think there's a sharp learning curve ahead, and it sounds like fun!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Yet another post about nothing significant

It's been nearly a month since the latest episode in the wildly successful series of blog reports about some excavations on a cycle path nearby, and I'm happy to announce that once again, something has happened. Also, I'll announce that you people are nuts. Don't you have anything better to read about? I guess not, because here's undeniable proof that up to 4½ people obsessively follow this blog:

Please, stop doing so.

Anyway, for a couple of days now, the site has looked like this:

They dug out the gravel they filled the holes with a month ago, and added some traffic cones. Clearly, something's about to happen in the near future. I better sharpen my fingertips, oil up the trusty old laptop, crack open a few beers and get ready to blog about this in a month or two again... but hey, what's this?

The next day, this happened! What is this I don't even...

The P"N"WD has filled up the holes with some kind of an unknown, disgusting black mass, that doesn't even match the colour of the old paving, and which probably will be slippery when it rains. They haven't even cleaned up the sand properly, and, uh... the traffic cones are gone, which surely is dangerous in the dark.

Ok, I've got to admit it, they've finally fixed up the cycle path. It took some eight months, and dozens of complaints by email, but they finally did it. And I'm not happy about it. I've gotten addicted to complaining, and what the hell am I going to write about in the blog now?

But seriously. When they dig up the road, they fix it up when they're done. When they dig up the cycle path, they leave it like that for months. I don't know why exactly. I'll assume this happens because
  • they can do so without sanctions
  • traffic consisting of bicyclists and pedestrians is considered much less important than traffic consisting of car drivers, in fact it's not considered as traffic at all
  • the bicyclists and pedestrians don't complain about these things enough.
Especially I'm fed up with the fact that if they dig up the cycle path in autumn, they know that they don't have to patch it up until next summer, because cycle paths aren't maintained properly in wintertime and it doesn't matter what's underneath the mass of ice and snow. If the cycle paths were maintained so that they would be good for bicycling, then it would matter.

Ok, it's summer, there's beer, there's music by Weezer, got to cheer up now and stop complaining. Plenty of time to do that, come winter, which, I believe is some 3 weeks from now.