BSNYC No Friday Fun Quiz Again Because I'm On Tour and Live to Disappoint You!

Yesterday, in the section of this blog where the comments go, a reader inserted the following words:

Anonymous said...

This is bullshit. I've been putting up with your book plugging for at least two weeks, and you can't even manage to put up satisfactory blog posts while on the road.

You need to get your priorities straight. I'm looking forward to a half decent post tomorrow.

March 29, 2012 1:27 PM

I agree that it is, like, totally bullshit, but what am I to do?  For the time being, touring is my reality.  The road has become my bride.  I am stripped of all but pride.  So in her I do confide.  And she keeps me satisfied.  Gives me all I need.  Wherever I may roam.  Woah.  Yeah!  Wherever I may wander, wander, wander.  Yeah, yeah, wherever I may roam.  Yeah, yeah.  Whoaoaoaoaoah!

Sweet Lob, that song is ridiculous.


Anyway, rest assured that it won't be long before my tour is behind me, at which point this blog will revert from its current state of sucking to its usual state of sucking.  In the meantime, I'll add a gratuitous and self-serving reminder that I'll be in the following places this weekend:

Saturday, March 31
1:30pm ride/3:00pm talk and booksigning
Mellow Johnny's 
400 Nueces
Austin, Texas 78701
(512) 473-0222

Sunday, April 1
2:00pm ride
1833 Pearl Street
Boulder, Colorado 80302
(303) 440-3535

3:00pm talk and booksigning
Boulder Book Store
1107 Pearl Street
Boulder, Colorado 80302
(303) 447-2074
Cost: $5.00 (good for $5 off The Enlightened Cyclist at any time, or $5 off any purchase the day of the event)

With regard to the $5 thing in Boulder, I did receive at least one irate "Tweet" about it, and in fact was quite surprised myself.  However, when I balked, my publisher explained to me that this is the bookstore's policy, and the $5 simply goes towards the purchase of my book or indeed any book if you don't want to buy mine, and that purchasing something from the store obviously offsets the time and effort the staff puts into hosting wiseass bloggers from New York City who track mud into the store and fail to put the toilet seat down after using it.  Once I looked at it in this light, I agreed that there are far worse things than supporting your local bookseller.  I hope you'll agree as well, and if not you can always just join the ride and then give me "the finger" and leave once we get to the bookstore.

Moving on, from time to time I receive emails from people or businesses asking me to help them promote their products.  Far more often than not, I either decline or ignore these requests.  However, once in a great while I come across a product I feel I should share with my readers, and when I received the an email that contained both the phrases "Burning Man" and "beautiful dust masks" I knew right away that this was one of those products:

I am a designer from the skateboarding industry in Santa Cruz California. I have done the artwork for many famous skateboards and surfboards. A few years ago I started going to Burning Man and I noticed that there were no beautiful dust masks in the world. I decided to make them myself and this adventure took me to the far east where I found a manufacturer who could put vibrant colors and designs onto dust masks. 

And thus, the Vogmask was born: I have created vogmask - the world's first designer dust, allergy, particle masks. They are very soft and comfortable and my friends and I wear them while cycling, traveling on airplanes, working with lathes and spraypaint, cleaning out the chicken coop and doing other things where we'd rather not breathe all the contaminants in the air.

Inspiration is like lighting, or herpes, or a rabid monkey on PCP, and we never know when or where it is going to strike.  Alexander Fleming was messing around with some fungus and he discovered Penicillin.  Two idiots crashed into each other and invented the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup.  And the inventor of the Vogmask apparently went to Burning Man, "wigged out" on some bad acid, and strapped a pair of panties on his face:

Vogmask is poised to become the face mask of choice for the discriminating germaphobe, though the first thing I thought of when I saw the above image was this song:

And then I saw this image:

Which will no doubt result in thousands of Vogmask orders from Japanese perverts who are into that whole "pantyface gardening" thing.

In any case, I sincerely with the inventor the best of luck with his venture, and if you lead a lifestyle that requires you to look fabulous while being exposed to dangerous particles or fumes I hope you will consider the Vogmask.  (As a semi-professional blogger my own vocation does not require a face mask, unless I've consumed a particularly "epic" burrito before going to "work.")  Indeed, there's no reason that the Vogmask shouldn't become all the rage among the artisanal bicycle craftspeople of Portland.

Speaking of Portland, I previously believed it to be the mostest bike-friendliest city in which to bicycle cycle for transportation in the United States.  But then I visited the midwest, and I daresay that Minneapolis and Madison may be even more rideable than "The Artisanal 'P'."  In particular, riding in Madison was like riding a cotton candy bicycle while being tickled with buttercups, and my commute from my quarters in Middleton to downtown Madison looked mostly like this:

Sure, Madison's a much smaller town than Portland, but that doesn't mean Portland can't feel the Midwest breathing down its neck hair dreadlocks.  This could be why Portland's bike-related endeavors increasingly seem to be born not of exuberance but of desperation.  For example, having already done wooden bikes, they're now moving on to wooden helments:

(Yes, I realize Corvallis isn't Portland, but I'm sure it's close enough that the Smugness Cloud rolls in if the wind direction is right.)

It would make me exceedingly happy if, by the time I get there for my BRA, half of Portland is riding around on wooden bikes while wearing wooden helments and SPD-compatible clogs:

Of course, the danger there is that they might all catch fire, but don't worry, because help is on the way in the form of an emergency "bake feets" squad:

I can certainly see bicycles being useful in a disaster, but the main problem with them is that they're ridden by cyclists.  And if you've ever set out with a group of cyclists you know there's that inevitable ten or fifteen minutes during which the two or three biggest know-it-alls in the bunch have to settle on a route.  "Scranus to Frumunda then through the park and onto South Grundle?"  "No, South Grundle's gonna be a mess this time of day, let's go around to Vulvanus."  "Vulvanus is being resurfaced, let's take the Vas Deferens."  And so forth.  It's like a People's Front of Judea meeting.  You can even see them doing it in the photo above, and that period of deliberation is going to mean the difference between life and death.

But don't worry, at least there's going to be a disaster theme ride:

"There's even a cargo bike/disaster-themed Pedalpalooza ride in the works."

Presumably it will happen after the Allergy Pride Parade, and of course they'll all be wearing Vogmasks.

Yes, feeling more prepared than everyone else in the event of Apocalypse is the ultimate expression of smugness, just as the Bridgestone X0-1 is the ultimate platform for the sporting retrogrouch, and if you've ever dreamed of owning one a reader has forwarded me the following Craigslist ad:

Bridgestone XO-1 - $600 (Olympia)
Date: 2012-03-29, 9:43PM PDT
Reply to: [deleted]

In the beginning...

9 bikes were given to Man to race and crash and make a mess of things.
7 bikes were forged for the Dwarves who kept their bikes forever in the garage.
3 bikes were given to the elves who turned them quickly into fixies and were never seen from again.
But one bike was made by the Master Grant Peterson...One bike to Rule Them All!

That bike is the XO-1 It is the one bike that is truly designed to do it all. At home on the road as the trail, this bike is designed to take you to Middle Earth and beyond. 

This is a Purple 1993 bike that is small, not large: no, you crank-apes cannot ride this bike. This bike measures 43 cm (yes they made them that small) 
I will provide pictures of the bike to people who request it. Only the worthy are able to gaze upon greatness. 

The bike is getting ready to be rebuilt. It has non-standard handbar and shifters. I have the Moustash bar and Suntour Barcon shifters to make it right. With this bike, many people wish it to be set up to their needs and not mine. 

I will ship this bike if you need me to. Shipping will be extra. This is the real deal. Of course, you need to be the height of Frodo to ride it!

It's too small for me, but I think it would fit my helper monkey, Vito.

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