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Meet Members of the Garmin-Slipstream Pro Cycling Team, Thursday-December 10th

Saw this on NYVelocity.com

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Roller Races event to support the CRCA juniors, youth development program of the New York Century Road Club.

Special guests include Team Garmin with Timmy Duggan, Tyler Farrar, David Millar, and Jonathan Vaughters.

It’s being held at Santo’s Party House at 96 Lafayette (between White and Walker) in Manhattan.

Entry fee is $20.

That’s Thursday, December 10 starting from 7 to 10:30 PM.

Race, Party, Drink, Passout, Race, then Race again. NYC December 18th and 19th.

Looks like its a couple of Day’s of events:

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Friday, December 18th,
Roach House Bicycle Club presents Partycat:
Registration 7:30pm
@ Lit Fuse Cyclery
409 Willoughby Ave, Brooklyn. $5
9pm Race
After Party at 1226 Putnam Ave, Brookyln.

Then:
Saturday, December 19th,
How the Grinch Stole Christmas 2 race,
Registration 2pm, Race at 3pm
Tompkins Square Park, NYC.

Then, That night:

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Dan G is throwing an alleycat race in NYC December 19th, to benefit the Tokyo Bike Messenger Association and to help recoup some of their financial losses in hosting September’s World Messenger Championships.

More info:
Email Dan fasttimes@samuraimessenger.com

You can also help out by buying a t-shirt from the DCBCA (District to Columbia Bike Courier Association)
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These shirts are only $10.00. Find out about them here.

Happy (belated) Birthday

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Just want to send a Happy Birthday to Chris Thromann, (His actual birthday was December 6th) winner of this year’s Cranksgiving 11, alleycat champ and organizer. Proud member of NYC’s cycling community.

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Oh and he just happened to ride his bike across the country this summer.

Staten Island has Critical Mass

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Don’t count out this borough of NYC.  Staten Island’s got it’s own critical mass on the first Friday of every month.

They meet at Borough Hall and Richmond County Courthouse

130 Stuyvesant Place, Staten Island, NY‎ -7:00pm


View Larger Map

Keep track of what’s going on at their facebook group page.

Holiday Gift Guide, Part 1

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It’s that time of the year again: Getting up at 4:00 in the morning to get down to the mall in hopes of snagging a new flatscreen without getting trampled; wiping off the beer stains from your Santa suit and parading along with 500 other drunks in the annual Santacon; Holdiay parties, and do we still have to include Kwanzaa in a list when we wish someone “Happy Holidays?”

I dunno, seems like in these times of 10% unemployment, we might all be re-evaluating gift giving but If you are going to dole out presents to those cycling fanatics out there, here are a few suggestions:

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My good pal Stevil Kinevil, of the awesome blog all hail the black market, has been hard at work making hats and t-shirts. Give him some support. I hear he’s not quite up to speed with his store but you can still make arrangements with him through paypal. These t-shirts make great gifts for the bicycle culture enthusiast in your life.
I bought mine:
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Printing by Stoker Ace who also has lots of other great shirts to choose from.

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Here is a totally unique gift. Danielle Baskin of Belle Helmets makes one-of-a kind custom painted bike helmets. She can paint just about anything on a helmet.
BikePhotoBooth-11-09-48(photo by Keiko Niwa)
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Open Bicycle in Boston has been doing some product testing and found some Iron clad gloves that will resist fire. Now that should keep you warm in winter.
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How about some sweet toe straps from Hold Fast
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Track bike boutique in Lower Manhattan, Chari and Co has some great products including Wool caps:
Chari and Co
and this two-way fleece neck warmer/cap
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and for the undecided they are offering gift cards
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Outlier makers of great cycling fashion has some special public showroom hours from now till Christmas. Thursday’s 6-9pm and Saturday’s 1-5pm. 364 Leonard St, in Brooklyn.

Check out their Leather Braided Keychain:
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How about a messenger style back pack from Under-the-Weather
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Michaud Apparel makes stylish panniers you can take right into your business meeting:
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Pearl Izumi was really good to me this year and I wanted to give them another shout out. There new P.R.O. series of cycling apparel is some of the most comfortable gear I have ever rode. A nice pair of big tights makes a great gift.
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How about belts made out of recycled road tires at retiredbelts.com
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Check out some great products like these unique racks from ridepdw.com
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http://www.ridepdw.com/goods/cargo/payload
For the Ladies Chrome Bags have their Vanya knickers,
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and check out Ibexwear.com
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Magazine subscriptions make great gifts so how about:
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Track bike culture aces, Cog Magazine

or

Urbanvelo.org
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If you’d like to give to a good cause you can by a $30.00 t-shirt from worldbike.org and support an incredible program giving bikes to people in developing countries.

New iPhone App TALL BIKE Joust and iPod Touch Giveaway

I’ve been talking about a few subtle hints for those paying attention but now the bomb has dropped.
First off, if you haven’t figured out already, there is a new iPhone game coming out day one next year, featuring artist and tall bike aficionado, Ryan Doyle.
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More on this new app can be found at the website: Bikeclubgames.com

Ryan’s been busy at the Miami art Basel showing off his skills as the world’s greatest joustman and demonstrating a few of his ridable art pieces including the Regurigitator and Hell-o-copter.

The master mind behind this game is Fredric King, who made the documentary B.I.K.E. back in 2007 for Fountainhead films. He’s teamed up with Curious Pictures for the creation of a truly unique app which allows the participants to command a tall bike in several urban settings and try and defeat various opponents through the bizarre sport of tallbike jousting.

I was able to interview Fredric King and find out what inspired him to make this app and bring the world of freak bike culture to iPhones everywhere:

Name, Age and where you live?
Fredric King. Age 51. Lives in NYC

What lead you to making a film about tallbikes, Black Label and eventually Ryan Doyle? In what order did that come about and talk a bit about the process?

After I finished my first film “Streets of Legend” that won cinematography at Sundance and was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award, I was searching for a new project. Anthony Howard was slated to be the lead in a film I was developing at the time called Blue Valentine. His co-director on “B.I.K.E.”, Jacob Septimus, was an associated producer on my first film. They both came to me with a trailer for “B.I.K.E”. that had the 3 elements that I like in a picture: action, a love story, and a kick-ass sound track. I think Tony Howard is a huge talent both in front of and behind the camera. In all of the films he’s made, he is the star — they are unpredictable and elicit an emotion. The challenge on “B.I.K.E.” was embarking on a project with a narrative arc with no set ending to the film, so after shooting for 1 year and ½ and compiling 385 hrs of footage, the task of editing the project over the next two years was the enormous feat. Doyle is one of the main characters and was someone I came to know and respect by watching the dailies.

What interested you in mutant bike culture and tall bike jousting?

How could I not be… it’s fascinating.

What inspired you to make a iPhone app about tall bike jousting?

I spent a couple of Halloweens during the shooting and production of the film at the Bike Kill where hundreds of wild unbridled youth performed extreme Ex-game type feats that would make a skateboarder look like a sissy. It’s a natural extension of the film. Tall Bike Joust is the first of 3 games I intend to make.

Talk about how the game was developed and what lead to certain details like choosing the other cities for tallbike jousts to occur?

Freak bike culture and my movie touch upon serious social and environmental concerns that I have deep feelings for. The underlying theme for the game embraces sustainability and anti-consumerist values. I grew up in New Orleans so it was natural to have a post-Katrina setting; Minneapolis and Reno are very strong BLBC (Bike Label Bike Club) chapters; New York is where Doyle and I both live; Amsterdam and Hong Kong embrace bicycle culture in Europe and Asia.

How did you get involved with Curious pictures?

I was introduced to Lewis Kofsky, a partner at Curious Pictures, at a party that Doyle was DJ-ing at about a year ago. Lewis and Doyle have spent several years together at Burning Man together, Lewis had caught wind of our intention of making a video game. At the time, I wasn’t aware that he was one of the producers of the Beatles RockBand video game. The rest is history.

What was it like working with Doyle in the making of the game?

A match made in bike heaven. I’m a producer who likes to make things and tell stories. Doyle’s artwork creates a unique design language for our game and he’s the Tall Bike Jousting Champion of the World, which brings authenticity to the project.

How was he with the motion capture experience and were there specific challenges in making this game?

Doyle’s persona is one with the bicycle whether he is jumping on to a Tall Bike, cruising down the boulevard or being toppled to the ground. His actions seem effortless almost poetic. The game is truly unique with very ambitious 3D art for the existing platform. Once we realized the 3D engines that were needed to run the game did not exist as off-the-shelf modules, the schedule and budget went out the window to achieve the quality that Doyle and I want to deliver to the user. Curious is pushing the limits of the iPhone platform. I think we are defining the possibilities what can be done with this medium — building tall bikes, creating jouster attributes, there are so many details to the game that will blow your mind.

Are the masses ready for an app about tallbike jousting and what do you think will be the impact on bike culture in general?

Frankly, the masses have no idea what Tall Bike Jousting is, but every time we screen the movie or talk about the impending game, it captures people’s interest and imagination. The gang at Curious pictures are amazingly talented and have exceeded my expectations. The end user will experience a game like no other at a price point that is unheard of for a game of this magnitude.

You may have faced difficult challenges with exposing a sub-culture like mutant bike clubs to the mainstream in the B.I.K.E. documentary. Do you foresee similar hurdles as far as acceptance with the iPhone app?

I’ve been criticized for making the film and exposing its dark, tragic nature. For me a worse experience would be to make a film that doesn’t evoke any feeling at all. I’ve met the most creative and generous people making and distributing the movie. We support advocacy groups be allowing them to screen the movie at festivals, museums and galleries around the world. Ultimately the positive feedback outweighs the negative and I think it partially inspired my daughter to study environmental science. I don’t foresee any negative backlash from the game. I think people are going to experience it and enjoy it.

What do you hope people walk (ride) away from the iPhone app? Do you think this will inspire more tall bike welding, mutant bike club formations, tall bike jousting in the xgames 2030?

I hope that the app will inspire people to become more creative and aware of the waste in our culture. There’s a whole section in the game called the Club House that allows you to weld, repair and recycle parts for your tall bike. Doyle and I felt strongly that the game shouldn’t be tied to a culture of waste and that the underlying theme would embrace the bike club’s message of anti-consumerism. I don’t know about Tall Bike Jousting in XGames 2030, but I hope there’s Tall Bike Jousting on Xbox in 2010!

What are future plans for video games with mutant bike sports?

Tall Bike Joust iPhone app is a litmus test to see if gamers are interested in this culture. If we’re successful, peer-to-peer jousting is obvious, with two additional games already being conceptualized. Stage II would offer these 3 games as downloadable modules on the PC platform with console gaming and social networking capabilities down the road.

Anything you wished I’d asked you?

When I was a kid, I remember the feeling of freedom I got from riding my bicycle through the streets of New Orleans. When my brother and I were about 10 years old, I remember flipping my bicycle frame and building a very rudimentary Tall Bike. Doyle’s experiential artwork and outlook on life give that same feeling of freedom and possibility. Making this game has given me that feeling again.
Ride Ur Bike!

Here is a little video with some behind the scenes footage of Doyle involved in making of the app with motion capture:

BBNYC Contest to win an iPod Touch:

Ok, now for the contest part:

In promotion of this new app, Fredric and his crew want to give away a few prizes including an 8 gig iPod touch, loaded with the tall bike joust app and they are allowing this blogger to come up with a contest. Rules and instructions for winning this prize are listed on a separate page through under the heading– contest (found at the top of the page) The contest basically involved taking some bike related pictures over the next 4 weeks, scoring points and the person with the most points wins.

Good Luck.

Freak Bike Culture in Miami gets regurgitated

Freak Bike Culture is alive and well in Miami for the Art Basel, this week thanks to Ryan Doyle and his hell-o-copter and regurgitator:

This is part of an art exhibit and the promotion of a new iPhone app coming out about tall bike jousting.

Here is a message from game producer Fredric King:
“Greetings from Miami and Art Basel. We are defiantly making waves down hear with Doyle’s Regurgitator. I think the one thing that has saved us from getting busted by the cops is that we’re directly under the flight path of the Miami airport so people think the noise is just a “very” low flying jumbo jet. Yesterday – Doyle, Irish Mike, Ian and Zarah took a tour through Miami Beach on their Tall Bikes and people were cheering them on. Here’s a link to my Youtube video of the Regurgitaor in action. Enjoy it and please share it with your friends.”

Stay tuned to this blog for more about the game and a special prize contest for the chance to win an iPod touch.

Bicycle Film Festival-Houston and an Interview with New Orleans

So the Bicycle Film Festival is also in New Orleans and Houston this Weekend.
(schedule for Houston)
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Here is a video from the Houston Fixed Gear scene:

Houston Fixed Chopped and Screwed from donny hall on Vimeo.

I got a chance to interview Kate Drabinski who is the festival director of New Orleans:

-Name. Age, where you live (ride)

Kate Drabinski, 34, New Orleans, LA

-what bikes do you own?

I ride an old cruiser gifted to me by a good friend that gets me around town on my daily commute. I’ve also got a Surly Long Haul Trucker for when I want to clip in and pedal for hours. God, I love that bike.

-what will be your next bike purchase?

I love my Surly, and I want another one. Pacer, please.

-what got you involved in the BFF?

Like most things, happenstance. Another BFF producer ran into one of my old college friends selling baked goods at the Memphis farmer’s market. They started talking, then talking bikes, and my blog about riding bikes around New Orleans came up. BFF needed a local contact, and I was contacted locally.

-has the BFF been to New Orleans before?

Nope, it’s the first year of what will hopefully be a long run. We like bikes and movies in New Orleans, so it’s a good match.

-what’s going to be going on this year?

We’ve got an opening night party with goldsprints and a dj and then the film fest followed by an afterparty at the Saint, a great bar in the Lower Garden District. It’s going to be a lot of fun.

-who’s coming out?

All the cool kids, natch. By which I mean everybody who likes bikes, movies, or both.

-any local films or filmakers in this years festival?

Frederic King, one of the producers of B.I.K.E., is originally from New Orleans and one of the directors, Anthony Howard, lives here now.

-what do you hope people ride away with from the festival?

I hope folks ride away with a sense of the many ways one can live a life on a bike.

-what is the bike culture like in New Orleans, critical mass? Bike polo? Alleycats? Freestyle fixed gear? Mutant bike events?
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NOLA is a great place to bike. We’ve got bike polo, monthly critical mass rides, Saturday group rides for the racers, and a heck of a lot of bicycle commuters and recreational cyclists. Lots of people don’t have cars here, for a wide variety of reasons. People really do go by bike here.

-good places for cyclists to hang out at?

If you are willing to be creative about your bike rack, there’s no end to the good places to hang out. You’ll find us at one of our many bike shops, on the levee bike path, in coffee shops and bars in every neighborhood—we’re everywhere. You’ll find lots of us at Rue, Mojo’s, Envie, Flora’s, or Sound when we want coffee, the Saint (home of our afterparty!), Allways Lounge, the Hi Ho, or Molly’s when we want beer, and Bicycle Michael’s, Mike the Bike Guy, Bayou Bicycles, or Bicycle World when we’re picking up yet another patch kit. But really, we’re everywhere.

– what’s it like biking in these cities?

This city is flat as a pancake, the weather’s temperate, you’ve got huge numbers of fellow travelers. There is absolutely no reason not to bike everywhere. The wonderful people over at Nolacycle will tell you how to get there.

-how is the bike infastructure? What needs the biggest improvements?

New Orleans is a poor southern city with the infrastructure that comes with that. I have never seen potholes like the ones we’ve got here. The roads themselves are the biggest hazard. We’ve got a couple of bike routes, though—the bike lane on St. Claude that takes you from the Marigny through the Lower 9th Ward, the lane up Jefferson Highway to Mid-City, and the levee paths. The Metro Bicycle Coalition is actively working to improve the situation as the city continues reconfiguring its post-Katrina infrastructure.

-your future cycling goals?

I want to ride the entire Mississippi River bike path. And retrace the Underground Railroad route. And bike to the Hoover Dam. I’ve always wanted to see the Hoover Dam. I’ve got an entire lifetime to go by bike, thank goodness.
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-anything you’d wished I’d asked you?

Are you interested in continuing to help the New Orleans recovery effort, and you’re in to bikes? Please consider checking out and donating to one of the several fantastic bike groups in town, rebuilding the city one bike and one bike route at a time:

RUBARB bike workshop (picture of Rubarbike)
RUBARB bike rodeo
www.rubarbike.org/

www.bikeproject.org

nolacycle.blogspot.com

www.mbcnola.org

And check out my blog about riding in New Orleans!

whatisawridingmybikearoundtoday.wordpress.com

Road Rage

Today there was a story on NPR about “road rage,” and the continuing escalation of anger between motorists and cyclists on our busy urban streets. This story derived from the recent conviction of Doctor Christopher Thompson who used his vehicle as a weapon and seriously injured two road cyclists in L.A.’s Mandeville Canyon. Turns out this ER doctor was a repeat offender and omitted to police in purposely hitting cyclists to “teach them a lesson.” The Doc could face up to 10 years in prison and is a landmark case for protection of cyclists, according to Laren Mooney, editor of Bicycling Magazine.

More on the conviction of Doctor Thompson from the LA Times, from November, 2009.

Listen to the “all things considered” NPR story here.

In other “road rage” news..In Philadelphia, Bicycle Messenger, Rachel Fletcher, speaks out about how she was recently hit by a car on Thanksgiving…

And according to Gothamist, a recent Hunter College report, shows that bike lanes are blocked by motor vehicles 60% of the time.

Read more here.

Bike ride tomorrow–NYC

Just a quick reminder from a bikeblog reader:

First Friday RideDay! Come out and play!

Celebrate Safer Streets with Non-Polluting Transportation and Exercise Your Right to the Road

7pm Union Square North.

Spread the word, bring friends!!

This Friday the new monthly group bike ride phenomenon celebrates its third month. Get exercise, meet new friends, see the city! Whether you want to discuss the loss of bike lanes on Bedford or want a group escort to your Friday night outing, First Friday Ride is the way to roll. No set route, no leaders but ourselves. Free Fun!

FYI another awesome ride this weekend in anticipation of next week’s UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen…

Ride Planet Earth: Join the Ride!

Sunday, December 6th, 12:00 PM

Center of Columbus Circle, Manhattan
Ends up in Prospect Park, Bklyn