Cyclists: Better Than Nothing, But Only Slightly

I'm a parent.  As a parent, I sometimes engage in the act of parenting at times other than evenings and weekends.  For example, at 4:30pm on a Tuesday, I might shout to one of my 17 children, "Hey, Leafspring, don't flush the cat down the toilet!"  Then I remember we don't have a cat, which means the feline in the toilet must belong to the neighbors.  So I retract my previous order with a casual "Aw, fuck it," and then turn up the volume on "Judge Joe Brown" to drown out the sounds of flushing and meowing.

Well, until now I knew I was parenting.  I even knew I was parenting shittily.  But until I read the following article in the New York Times, I had no idea that, by interacting with a child during normal business hours, I was in fact parenting artisanally as well:

That's right, if you have a penis and take care of a child during a weekday, you're an "artisanal father:"

The Artisanal Father

In a way, the decision to opt out of the rat race to pursue a more “meaningful” career as a parent echoes the classic Plan B narrative of the stress-addled professional who bails out to immerse himself in roll-up-the-sleeves work — say, craft-whiskey distilling, or beekeeping. (Given the drudgery and muck involved, parenting might be considered the ultimate “artisanal” pursuit.)

So basically, whereas an artisan was once a "worker who practices a trade or handicraft," the term now refers to anybody who does anything at all, including following the natural impulse to keep your offspring alive:

(After kneading the child, the artisanal father flings it up in the air to stretch it, after which he will cover it in cheese and sauce and slide it into the oven.  Delicious!)

Also in the New York Times was an article about the Runcible Spoon:

The cafe in which I was once served a hairy muffin:

(I don't know how to use a camera, but if I did you'd see there's a hair in there.)

For those of you from out of town (if you don't live in New York you're out of town, even if you think you're home), Nyack is the prime cycling destination for those New York City Freds and tridorks who are hardy enough to make it past Piermont, and like their neighbors to the south, Nyack too resents its visiting cyclists--or at best considers them the lesser of two evils:

Villagers regard the regular flood of two-wheeled visitors as a mixed blessing. Across the street, a sign in a window admonishes sprawled-out riders not to lean their bikes against the building.

But Bob Mattern, 53, a daily visitor who works at a restaurant nearby, prefers them to the weekday play groups. “Given my choice,” he said, eating a bagel with bacon, egg and cheese, “if I had a table of cyclists and three mothers with their kids running all over the place, I’ll take the cyclists.”

Wow, Bob, how accommodating of you.  I'm glad you find us less annoying than women and children.  Of course, this is a restaurant in a small town in Rockland County and not a Michelin-starred restaurant in Manhattan, which raises an important question: who's hanging out in downtown Nyack without either a bike or a kid?  So if Bob were to get his wish and neither cyclists nor parents were to visit the restaurant in which he works, who the hell would be left?  One guy with an unnerving twitch who keeps ordering nothing but unthawed shrimp?  I'm sure Bob will miss the cyclists and the mommies as his one customer looks at him menacingly while crunching shrimp in his teeth like ice cubes and then leaves a 19-cent tip.

To be fair though, the Runcible Spoon emphatically does not resent its cycling customers:

Joohee Kim, 28, who manages the Spoon, which her mother, Okhee Kim, bought nearly six years ago, tries to cater to all the clientele, but acknowledges that the riders — 75 percent of her weekend business — help the bottom line.

“As much as the townspeople may say they really love it or they hate it because the cyclists are clogging roads,” Ms. Kim said, “for us, we’re open arms.”

For which they should be commended--especially when they're forced serve customers who talk like this:

“Usually, if I’m going to bonk, I will crush a few cows on the way out,” said Bernie Childs, 30, a member of the triathlon team TRI2B, who lives in Manhattan.

Fortunately, the article provides a translation:

Translation: “Usually, if my legs feel as if they are no longer attached to my body and I am about to pass out, I will eat some thickly frosted cow sugar cookies to help me get home.”

Unfortunately though, the translation is wrong, and what Childs means is that he crashes into actual cows when he inevitably careens off the road due to his abysmal triathlete bike-handling skills.  (Granted, I've never seen a cow in Nyack, but leave it to a triathlete to find one and crash into it.)  Also, triathletes never feel as though their legs are attached to their bodies.  This is because they have one "normal" brain in their head that they use only for poring over their aerobar-mounted electronic training accessories, and another walnut-sized brain in their hind-quarters that controls the motion of the legs.  (If you knock a triathlete over, the legs will continue to flail until the organism eventually rights itself, kind of like a potato bug.)

Meanwhile, on a more serious note, you may recall that last week a reader photographed the aftermath of a collision in which a driver hit a cyclist while driving on a separated bike lane in Queens.  Well, more details have emerged, and fortunately justice is being done:

No, I'm just kidding, the police aren't doing shit about it:

A spokesperson at NYPD told us that, since the victim is not known to be dead and the driver remained at the scene, “We wouldn’t have any paperwork, because there’s no criminality.” Assuming the victim survives, or even if he does not, this crash is likely one of thousands to go uninvestigated or under-investigated by NYPD.

If you have any information on this crash, let us know.

In other words, if you're ever hit by a driver operating his car someplace where it's not even remotely allowed to be, make sure you die so that the odds of a police officer actually bothering to fill out paperwork increase slightly.

Speaking of disrespect, a reader informs me that Slate has deemed mountain biking to be one of the "weird sports that nobody wants to watch," along with race walking:

Baron Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympics, would be very upset to know that modern pentathlon has been relegated to the tail end of the London Games, alongside mountain biking and racewalking and all the other weird sports that nobody wants to watch.

This is grossly unfair--though I will acknowledge it was slightly weird that the bronze medalist finished without a seat:

I'm sure he was almost as disappointed as the seller of the Stanley Wiggins bike, which failed to meet its eBay reserve:

Though in checking it I did find another auction for this beauty, complete with taint-saving horseshoe crab saddle:

Sadly, it doesn't come with the bike:

Crank is again Shimano Dura Ace. The bike is really great for climbing as well as sprints.  Pedals and Seat not included

Which means the best you'll manage on it is bronze.
automotive ,automotive news ,automotive magazine,automotive industry outlook 2012,automotif,automotive magazine automotive ,automotive news ,automotive magazine,automotive industry outlook 2012,automotif,automotive magazine