Thursday, March 28, 2013

There's no "I" in "Team," and there's no "Fred" in "Athlete."

Further to yesterday's post, a commenter raised an important point regarding the word "athlete:"

Anonymous said...

You hate Freds with the hatred that only a disillusioned Fred could have. You sound like Michelle Bachman's husband talking about gay people.

That said, I don't know why you keep trying to say they aren't athletes. I mean, they are participating in a competitive physical contest. They're athletes. They might be gear obsessed dweebs, but they are athletes. Give them that much. The old ladies in swimaerobics are athletes too. It's not like you're crowning them the Sultan of Brunei for giving them that title.

March 27, 2013 at 2:19 PM

Firstly, as far as my own disillusionment, I'd say a more fitting analogy would be the ex-smoker talking about the dangers of tobacco.  Secondly, on giving Freds the athlete thing, absolutely not.  I refuse to call them athletes for the same reason I refuse to say that people "curate" their playlists on iTunes.  They're (though I really should say "we're," since I too am a Fred) are not really athletes.  What they're doing is working out, or exercising.  They're athletes like the people you see sweating away in the window at Equinox are athletes.  If a cyclist who's participating in an amateur bike race is an athlete then when I'm defrosting a Trader Joe's pizza I'm a chef.  And sure, I can reheat the shit outta one of those bad boys and it will be delicious, and I might even throw some extra toppings on there just because (ham and Froot Loops baby!), but that doesn't make me Anthony Bourdain.

And if you really want to get technical about it, let's look at the dictionary definition of "athlete:"



Trained?  Skilled?!?  I don't think so.  Nobody who's ever participated in an amateur bike race can possibly claim that any of these people are "skilled."  Not falling down or making someone else fall down is not a "skill," it's just basic survival, and a lot of these people can't even manage that.  And yes, Freds say they "train," but let's not confuse that with "being trained."  An Olympic gymnast who flips fifty times through the air and then lands on a balance beam on her pinky toe has been trained, whereas an amateur bike racer has merely indulged himself extensively before an event.  Freds train for racing only in the sense that the person "clearing the pipes" is training for a big date, or that the person with his face in a bong is training to listen to "The Dark Side Of The Moon."

There are numerous words in the dictionary that fit Fred far better than "athlete" does, and here's just one of them:


Nerd?  Jerk?  Yes, and yes.

Still, I admit that "dorks" is a bit harsh for use in cycling publications and bike-related marketing, and too many people aren't ready to admit that they're Freds, so I'd suggest replacing the word "athlete" with the politically correct yet still technically accurate "Physically Active Bicycle Consumer" (or PABC).  So you ride a lot, talk about "embro," and spent $200 on bib shorts?  Congratulations, you're a PABC.  Good for you.

But while what you are when you're riding a road bike is debatable, there's no debate that when you're riding a folding bike you're a circus bear, and that's what I was when I rode over the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday.  Nobody with any brains rides a bike over the Brooklyn Bridge, and nobody with any dignity rides a folding bike, and the fact that I was doing both should tell you everything you need to know about me.  And in case you don't know why it's stupid to ride over the Brooklyn Bridge, it's because it's crawling with tourists who stand in the middle of the bike lane:


I like how the one on the left is explaining the engineering behind this modern marvel, and how the one in the middle looks like she wishes she was dead:


("I'm in New York City and I'm looking at braided cables.  Kill me.")

But as stupid as I am, at least I'm not one of those idiots who rides across while indignity shouting "Bike lane, bike lane!" at everybody.  Really, we should just surrender the bike lane to the tourists already.  Actually, what they really need to do is close the Brooklyn Bridge to cars, give the wooden walkway to the tourists, and give the roadway to the cyclists.  The drivers can take one of the other bridges, or suck it up and pay the toll for the Battery Tunnel.  Fucking cheapskates.  If you can pay for a car and pay for the gas then you can cough up a few extra bucks for a toll, and if you can't then lose the car and take the bus.  Anyway, I kind of like the idea that I'm making my way into people's photos:



Note the camera angle:


Now whenever they want to remember their trip to New York City they'll have to look at some dork on a folding bike.

Meanwhile, in Brisbane, Australia, a reader tells me that a landmark legal decision will allow a Sikh to ride without wearing a helmenth:


As if mandatory helment laws weren't humiliating enough, the poor guy had to sit through a trial and listen to stupid questions like this:


This proved to be a brilliant tactic, since the spacial intelligence required to visualize the problem made the prosecution's brains hurt so much that they ultimately forfeited the case--but not before some perfunctory cross-examination:


Well, he did say he takes off the turban to bathe, so I'm surprised they didn't claim that before cycling he should take a bath, put on a helment, and then wrap the turban over it.

Anyway, after this profound waste of time, the poor guy is finally clear to ride with only one symbolic hat on his head instead of two.

At least until Nutcase starts making Sikh-compatible helments.

142 comments:

Roille Figners said...

Guys. You're gonna want that cowbell on the track.

rwaiee feenyay

Anonymous said...

HONEY IM HOME

Anonymous said...

Podium?

le Correcteur said...

Podium?!

742 steadyn

le Correcteur said...

Damn, top ten at least. Now to read!

Anonymous said...

Ass Monkeys... ATTACK!!!

Invisible Man said...

In a break with the tradition of crowing about being a top commenter, I'm going to comment on the substance.

I ride across the Brooklyn Bridge every day, for the unimaginative reason that it lands me closer to the Hudson River Greenway. I ring my bell at the tourists. Then, when they fail to get out of the way, I shout, "Watch out on the bike lane, please!"

I'm sorry that makes you hate me, Snob.

Anonymous said...

Toop Teen

Serial Retrogrouch said...

nice tits... scranus

Jan! said...

Sikh transit gloria mundis.

Anonymous said...

KNEEL BEFORE ZOD.

picky picky said...

After your string of amazing posts, Snob, this feels phoned in.

Invisible Man said...

I once, incidentally, had a wedding party shout at me because they said I was riding too fast in the Brooklyn Bridge bike lane where they were trying to take their wedding pictures. I was doing 12mph and they were trying to take commemorative pictures of their special day in a bike lane that carries thousands of bikes a day between Brooklyn and Manhattan.

I suggested to them that if they were hell-bent on obstructing traffic the view from the road was probably even nicer. That probably wasn't a nice thing to say.

theEel said...

weed!

BikeSnobNYC said...

Invisible Man,

I was really referring to the people who basically shout hysterically the entire way across.

I don't hate you, I love you.

Love,

--Wildcat Rock Machine

babble on said...

Hoooooooorayyyyyyy! Good day, peeps!

Jan! said...

Nuts, that should have been "mundi". I am clearly not an apt Latin athlete.

ChamoisJuice said...

Got smoked by a bunch of Freds!

BikeSnobNYC said...

Picky Picky,

Your comment feels texted in.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

Serial Retrogrouch said...

" If a cyclist who's participating in an amateur bike race is an athlete then when I'm defrosting a Trader Joe's pizza I'm a chef."

i choked on my pizza slice reading this... gold

ChamoisJuice said...

ONUR LEFT

CAT6 CHMP

Comment deleted said...

Nice titsh!

captcha: ortsoil (eeew)

Anonymous said...

I can see the new kickstarter. A helmet designed to look like a Sikh turban. Including a fake beard integrated into the chinstrap!

Marcel Da Chump said...

Dork skills.

Kenny Banya said...

"...one symbolic hat on his head instead of two.
"

Gold Snobby, GOLD!

neguain 10414

ChamoisJuice said...


GETTING SIKH WITH IT

Anonymous said...

I have an athletic physique.

I don't buy much stuff. I don't train or compete. I just have an athletic physique.

Am I allowed to say that?

I hope so, because I enjoy saying, "I have an athletic physique."

Anonymous said...

I beleive you may have meant there is no athlete in a Fred.

Ian Large said...

You may or may not know that here on the right hand side of the Big Pond, Sikh motorcyclists are exempted from wearing helments however there's no law about cyclists wearing them irrespective of religious observances.

I use one on my mountain bike because I'm prone to trying to ride it down things I couldn't walk down and occasionally fall off. I used to use one on my motorcycle because I'd go at lethal speeds most of the time and of course it is a legal requirement.

Riding my road bike? On a long trip, sure. Why not? It isn't as if it is uncomfortable. Nipping to the grocery store for a carton of milk? Can't do any harm to wear a lid.

For all of the benefits though, I fully approve of it being optional. Cycling doesn't have to be formalised to the extent that motorised transport is. Most people won't achieve speeds likely to kill or maim either themselves or somebody else. Promoting cycling as a quick and easy way to travel the urban landscape while not causing any significant traffic won't work if you can't just hop on a bike and use it.

Anonymous said...

The best part about that first tourists picture is that the pedestrian on the right looks like he(?) is surreptitiously flipping them the bird.

Anonymous said...

What about them being required to wear that bike helment that is a airbag thingy that you put around your neck? I know you posted that some time last year. Make them wear that fuckin thing

ChamoisJuice said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_(bicycling)

BSNYC, I think you are getting a little carried away with your definition of "Fred".

I have always thought of "Fred" as a term used by road racers, to deride cyclists that do not conform to road racing style diktats.

ex 1. Buddy with the helmet mirror, fenders, and upright riding position.

ex 2. Noob racer. Wears underoos unda the spando, does not shave legs, double sided clipless.

I feel like using "Fred" to describe "Poser Racer" is spreading the term too thin. I use "LANCE" as a term of derision.

Anonymous said...

We have a park here in CNY that has a road for bikes and rollerbladers, etc. There is also a separate non wheeled path for walkers. Quite often there are large groups of non bikers RIGHT in the middle of the road, stopped, talking to one another. I want to kick them as we go past on our bikes, but my feet are clipped into my pedals. Usually they just get a dirty look.

BikeSnobNYC said...

ChamoisJuice,

"Fred" used that way serves to make racers feel that they're somehow less dorky, which of course they are not. Including them all under the "Fred" category rectifies that problem.

--Wildcat Rock Machine

JB said...

@ChamoisJuice wrote:
"I have always thought of 'Fred'..." and
"I feel like using 'Fred'..."

And the Snob obviously feels differently.

Comment deleted said...

fred noun
: a bicycle rider who is less serious, or more generally, less "cool" than you.

ChamoisJuice said...


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_(bicycling)

I want that water bottle, REAL BAD.

For the record, I ride a mid nineties lugged custom steel road bike to commute 12 miles. I ride in my work clothes: button up, jeans, and vans. I do not wear a healment or reflective clothing, rather pick a low traffic route. I rep/rub/rock full fenders, toe clips, bars level with saddle.

My route is popular with "PERFORMANCE" road dweebs. I frequently get into heated Cat 6 battles, just trying to make my way home. Yesterday, I passed a dooder on aerobars, mtb shoes, camelbak, neon spando, while I was riding no hands on the bars drinking a coffee. Deadly Fredly was pissed, and sat on my wheel for 7 miles or so.

Anonymous said...

GET THE FUCK OUT OF THE FUCKING BIKE LANE YOU FUCKING STUPID MOTHERFUCKER!!! Oh yes and enjoy your trip to NYC.



Anonymous said...

..."No actually I don't. I play real sports, not tryin to be the best at exercising." -Kenny Powers
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ns6YSvCsVJM

Fritz said...

And here I thought my definition of Freds was all about the "Cycling Purchases" they make...ie overpriced crabon bikes with long stems,Lyra from head to toe, bike helmet that looks like a lizard brain, walking through Whole Foods with those bike shoes that make Freds sound like unemployed tap dancers, and strange crabon bike wheels that cost more than the B1 bomber

Gaffer Smythe said...

Cleveland.





Cleveland.




Bring the folder.

Anonymous said...

I wish I were a fred, I'm just too lazy. I don't really care that much about all of the componentry or the electronic doodads that only tell me I'm mediocre i know that when I'm passed often on rides by Freds.

PBateman said...

so wait, you just phone these in to what i assume is some really, really hot secretary and she does all the grunt work while you're out living the celebrity blogger high-life?

mother fucker.

how long till we see you on page 6 or on perez hilton acting "out of control"

and by out of control i mean literally losing control of your doofus folding bike?

Anonymous said...

a Fred is someone who takes themselves way too seriously in their biking endeavors and who sense of importance about it is way out of proportion to reality.

Chris said...

There is also no "Team" in "I"

Serial Retrogrouch said...

WRC,
i love riding the brooklyn bridge occacionally (not now while they're repairing the thing... damn thing smells like rotten eggs all the time).

you can't hate the tourists for being themselves. what i do when i cross the bridge on bike is to pretend i'm a tourist too, not in a hurry to get anywhere, enjoy the scenery, smile at some people and never, ever, scream at anyone... just a polite ding of the bell with a smile.

the world on the bridge is a better place that way... until i hear an asshole speeding on the lane and screaming at everyone as if they are the only people worth a scranus.

[this has been an anti-grouch retrougrouch]

F.Flintstone said...

Snobbie:

The girl in the middle of the photo looks so "Meh" cause she's thinking "Who is the ex-Fred on the clown bike?"

I still think you are too broad in your definition of Fredness(just to piss off ShammyJiz). When does one venture from being a cyclist (one who rides a bike when he or she doesn't have to-your definition from your first book) to a Fred?

1632oldevelo

ChamoisJuice said...

Yeah, "Fred" is not a catch all phrase for Bike Dork. Bike riders are dorks, with RARE exception.

Just as there are many bike dorks, there are many music nerds; there are many different types of music nerds. You don't call every person who wraps up their personal identity and style with a certain uniform music outfit a "Goth". You got your heshers, ravers, indie kids, and so on. They are all dorks, but different types of dorks.

ChamoisJuice said...

ALL BIKE RIDERS ARE DORKS.
NOT ALL BIKE DORKS ARE FREDS.

CAPS LOCK

"CABRON" ,mexican pronunciation makes a good substitute for "LANCE".

mikeweb said...

My favorite part of the comments today was Chamois juice's link to the Sikh pop video. The Silh guy at work just walked by and gave me the thumbs up.

If you're going to ride the BB at any time other than the crack of dawn, when its pouring rain or at 20 degrees Fahrenheit, you're going to encounter oblivious tourists and/ or some kind of charity walkers. Either get over that fact or drive your Fred sled to Hudson terrace and work on your 'personal best' with the rest of the dorks up there.

babble on said...

Right. said Fred.

dcee604 said...

I'm an athlete...of the armchair variety.

Janine said...

I was yelling "bike lane, bike lane, bike lane!" last night as I rode up 8th ave. I feel no guilt at all for the following reasons. They're always obviously bar patrons. Who in the world goes drinking on, like, 45th and 8th? The only acceptable thing to do over there is grab a pre-show dinner, then see Book of Mormon or whatever. If you're partying at one of the many sad, dirty Irish megapubs by the Milford Plaza, don't advertize it by standing around in the bike lane like you own it. Second, these are the type of people who chill at midtown bars wearing blue button down shirts untucked over ironed jeans. They're lucky I don't just run them down. In closing: break for theatre goers; speed up for fat neck Nickleback fans. That's just science.

babble on said...

Sucks to be a cyclist in Vancouver today. Apparently the police are allowed to punch you in the face if you're not wearing a helmet.

Buffalo Bill said...

I feel like I've been training to listen to Dark Side Of The Moon since grade 10.

Dennis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Janine said...

...and I love going over the Brooklyn Bridge. Sure, you have to slow down, but if you're not taking to time to notice how nice it is, you're missing something. Same with my daily trip down the Hudson River Greenway to work from Washington Heights. Every day, you have different amounts of menacing geese, the sky is different, different river garbage, you never know if this will be one of those mornings where some part of the NJ waterfront is randomly on fire...

Dooth said...

A couple of Sundays ago I cycled around Central Park on my fast old road bike (Reynolds 531). I wore a leather jacket, jeans, no helment and I zipped past freds in full kit. Oh! the indignity they suffered at my toe clips.

babble on said...

Heh heh...I love the look of Fred when I blow by on the Electra in five inch heels.

Anonymous said...

Dooth:
How do you know they weren't ex-Freds who didn't care about you and your retro snobbery.

Besides according to WCRM you are still a Fred.

Buffalo Bill said...

I've been shooting for the KOM on Wish You Were Here, but just can't put the numbers up. Maybe an electric bong would help.

crosspalms said...

janine,
I admire your science.

dennis,
yours, too.

ge said...

Yeah, here on the left coast of Canada, Sikhs don't have to wear motorcycle helments either. Never even heard an issue with bike helments. What I'd be more concerned about is if the Australian government did safety tests on turbans and determined that they were safer than helments and made everyone wear them. I mean, they look kind of hot and lack vents.

BTW, I kind of like the thought of looking like a circus bear. Please come up with something more offensive to my sensibilities so I don't feel like the Freds are getting all the attention.

Comment deleted said...

ge, that really crimps the police's ability to punch Sikhs in the face.

babble on said...

Can't have that.

ChamoisJuice said...

MTBrosef I ride with, Smokey, poaching Mt. Baker Hillclimb Race. Finished in top 10% of the field, announced his "666" numba plate at the finish.
SMOKEY

LOL at him passing mad roadies who take the event seriously "You're doing great, bro. Dig deep!" as he pedals away from them is a Slayer T-shirt and jeans, LOLOLOLOL.

mikeweb said...

I also agree with Janine's logic.

And I also admire Buffalo Bill's dedication and persistence. It's something we can all aspire to. I'm sure Smokey is a devotee.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's never occurred to me before that people who aren't world-class athletes aren't athletes, but this gives me a new insult to shout at the kids when Little League starts up in my neighborhood next week, so I'm good with it.

Roille said...

Look, nobody cares what "Fred" means.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-l0_FCtat76s/UVL8OkRuk4I/AAAAAAAArB0/zDuImJ0zPeE/s1600/you.jpeg

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

BENT FRED

RF said...

Or all linky-like.

bikedorknyc said...

awww, don't go all mushy on us Wildcat...

SNOB LOVE

mikeweb said...

Anon 2:07,

That reminds me of a great story about long time Phillies 1st baseman and current baseball analyst, John Kruk.

In his playing days, he and a few other players were attending a local charity event organized and attended mostly by middle aged ladies, as those events many times are.

Kruk was off to the side smoking a cigarette, when approached by one of the ladies who said:

"How can you smoke? You're and athlete!"

To which he replied:

"Ma'am, I'm not an athlete, I'm a baseball player."

Dooth said...

Anon, they cared enough to "re-take" the lead. Retro-snobbery? As opposed to, say, modern carbon snobbery ...whatever works. And I'm a Grateful Fred.

Esteemed Commenter DaddoOne said...

I ride do the bicycling road riding and the commuter riding (I swear, I do!) and I have also touristed the Brooklyn Bridge...

I remember being on the bridge with my girls and that the bike lane somehow (to be honest i don;t remember exactly how) seemed very ill placed and almost non-intuitively in a spot where you would expect to be as a pedestrian. In fact i didn't even know it was the bike lane until someone yelled at me (which elicited hilarity from my daughter)

If the set up is still such that the bike lane is not really set up in a way that is obvious then FUCK YOU ALL - AND TELL THE CITY TO GET IT RIGHT.

If they already have it right, then, well...uh...
never mind.



Anonymous said...

Dooth back at you: Well then I stand corrected. I guess they cared. Did you Cat 6 them properly?

and from the Wiki entry referenced, a Fred is someone who spends "your spare hours name-calling other cyclists"

The_fred_attack said...

Disambiguation time: The Fred attack versus teh Fred.

Uh Fred attacker is the guy riding a bike who cares with great specificity what another rider is not wearing and/or riding and or just being on a bike 'wrong' somehow and always, always going slower than the Fred attacker and generally driving teh people away from cycling.

The Fred attacker with a Cat 4 USAC license is the problem, not the people minding their business riding their bikes as they please.

And nothing brings me more joy than rolling up on a squadra of Fred attackers with $10,000 in gear and waiting for them to try dropping me. Their little Fred attacking minds can't deal with it.

For once, Snobby is right. We are all Freds. Fred attackers is the problem. New word: Fredist.TM

Contact me to make license arrangements if you would like to use the word Fredist.

Anonymous said...

The answer to the magistrate's question is: a helmet designed with extra space - like the "Hairmet" JD uses in scrubs to make sure he doesn't mess up his hair.
http://images.wikia.com/scrubs/images/c/cc/5x22-Hairmet.jpg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0rGoWtF-hs

fredist_attack said...

ChamoisJuice said...

MTBrosef I ride with, Smokey, poaching Mt. Baker Hillclimb Race. Finished in top 10% of the field, announced his "666" numba plate at the finish.
SMOKEY

LOL at him passing mad roadies who take the event seriously "You're doing great, bro. Dig deep!" as he pedals away from them is a Slayer T-shirt and jeans, LOLOLOLOL.


Amen brother. Amen!! Keep bringing some good times back to cycling and breaking the Fredist cycle

Anonymous said...

The hotly debated topic of Freds. There have been books written about it. "The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary into the Extraordinary" and the just released "Fred 2.0 New Ideas on How to Keep Delivering Extraordinary Results". No, I haven't read them, I'm an athlete.

Anonymous said...

Love it! Freds aren't athletes! Riding a bike and jogging are one and the same: not athletic feats. They're what non-athletic ppl do once they become adults and realize they need to have some form of hobby to brag about at work and waste money on. Obviously Freds waste more money on their hobby than joggers do, so they're much cooler. Kenny Powers said it best about bikes, running, and swimming, "I do SPORTS. Not try to be the best at exercising."

Dooth said...

Anon, I'm human (sometimes) and when a cyclist passes me after I've passed him/her my ego tells me to catch 'em, stay on their wheel, let 'em know who's boss. But it's a silly, foolish pleasure I don't need. Now, if someone were to say, "hey, wanna race?"...

Janine said...

Now, I have the Dutch bike and darling gear of a Beautiful Monster (though I always watch where I'm going, how else can I judge everyone all the time), so I don't need scranus protection. But I will never for the life of me understand riding in jeans. Perhaps because I'm sweating slightly right now and I'm just sitting at a desk, but wet jeans are brutal. I'd rather be in head to toe Livestrong than wet jeans. At least that "technical" ish breathes. I assume. I've never worn any.

babble on said...

I like to ride in my yoga jeans. They're great for yoga, too, though they're not really see-through enough.

Never in the rain, though. Never ever.

Anonymous said...

re athletes:

Perhaps your confused because you suck and never won anything. To win, even amateur bike races, does take a bit of skill.

source: a person who has won bike races.

Wheel Sucking Pansy said...

What?

paulb said...

Except that the next mayor is going to hang Janette Sadik-Khan, shoot 1 in 10 bicyclers as a lesson to anyone he doesn't shoot, and erase the bike lines, it would be cool to move the BB pedestrian paths outboard of the center cables. Then there could be two paths, with complicated north/south decision making and more room for all.

paulb said...

P.S. A shot over the Manhattan Bridge then Bowery to Worth St. and crosstown on that isn't such a hassle and gets you over to the west side bikeway pretty easy. I'm cool with ceding the BB to tourists.

crosspalms said...

There seems to be a disturbance in the FredForce today.

nscadu 9 said...

Hey Snob, a little harsh on Freds. Gotta agree with the commenter, Fred's are the old ladies in swimaerobics of cycling.

mikeweb said...

And may the Frorce be with you.

Anonymous said...

Maybe we can tweek the definition of "athlete" or at least a "professional athlete" as follows-
"participating in a competitive physical contest who gets PAID and LAID"
and define Freds as "participating in a competitive physical contest who gets neither PAID nor LAID"

Grumpy Too said...

I offer as proof of Snob's unFredly nature that he steadfastly refuses to buy or learn to operate a camera which will take a decently exposed picture. Man, those are some seriously overexposed clouds. Dude, YOU SUCK AT PHOTOGRAPHY! Time to trade in your QuickTake, you curmudgeonly Luddite.

(And stop calling me Fred, I'm an athlete dammit!)

Also, having taken the obligatory stroll (halfway) across your beloved bridge I found little to goggle at except yucky brown steel. I was not impressed.

Mercedes Benz Fashion Week said...

The blond's photo, the one you rode your way into. Could you re-stage that shot in July or August when she'll be wearing super short shorts, no bra and a sheer Hooters Wife Beater type top? I'm just thinking it might make a photo suitable for framing, as the saying goes.

Comment deleted said...

Grumpy Too, while I won't try to instill in you an appreciation for one of the engineering marvels of the world (built just after the Civil War, ferchrissakes!), how could you miss that architectural feast before your eyes?

BB walkers, check out the accidental view between the planks at mid-span. Nothing between you and Old Skanky but some flimsy little boards.

Punch Drunk Love said...

BABBLE @ 132: "Sucks to be a cyclist in Vancouver today. Apparently the police are allowed to punch you in the face if you're not wearing a helmet."

Woha! I thought south of the Canadian boarder was where the violence lived, what with gun nuts, wing nuts, Tea Party nuts, etc, etc. Plus north of the Canadian boarder where one nut lives in Alaska.

bikesgonewild said...

...sheesh...if my name was 'fred', at this point, i think i'd change it to 'scranus'...

...less derision...

...captcha = labayst 418...i am indeed a labayst...

...just sayin'...

babble on said...

Oh, don't worry, we have our fair share of nuts up here, too.

bikesgonewild said...

...perhaps not enough labayst's...

babble on said...

That's IT! That's what this place needs.

Nice lay be ah

Janine said...

These Freds are mad, hunh? Well, if I wanted respect for participating in a sport somehow less popular than soccer, I guess I'd be mad too. Take it from a former viola player who counts oboe players and bassoonists among her friends: sometimes you just have to love an activity for its own sake.

Scrotus said...

paulb, shoot 1 in 10 bicyclers? I believe the word your looking for is decimate.

Scrotus said...

And the word I'm looking for is you're.

Fritz said...

I hope this thread does not incur the wrath of The Fred Society

McFly(The Wheelie King) said...

I crashed my mountaining bike today. I abandoned the "preferred line" on a smallish downhill so I could do a sweet wheelie over a lil pud muddle and it was slick on the other side and BOOM GOES THE DYNAMITE I was on the ground. Doug Domokes would have been proud.

It don't get much Fredder than that.

Could have been worse, my brothers front wheel feel off.

bikesgonewild said...

...you win, mcfly...

...you were attempting something daring...

...you brother was simply tempting fate...

...speaks for itself...

Vegas said...

That Aussie helment law makes me Sikh.

Anonymous said...

Fred Fred Fred. All you talk about is this Fred. Why don't you ever talk about the female version of this Fred. Cant women compete in the Fred playing field? Fredette?
Your such a sexiest snob!

Vegas said...

anon 7:33
They are Wilmas. It's been brought up before. I assume since they are a far more scarce species that Snobbie has a much smaller chance of seeing them in the wild.

sourLog 13401
I won't even go there

Angie Kritenbrink said...

Old ladies in swimaerobics are not athletes.

Angie Kritenbrink said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Angie Kritenbrink said...

Anonymous - Vegas

The other day he did mention some female Freds and called them She-Freds.

HE'S ONLY SEXIST IN BOOKS
don't you people pay attention?????

Frederick the Great said...

I was King of Prussia, dammit! Now I'm a bicycle rider's fantasy. So be it, I had a good ride.

Fritz said...

<wilma?

Vegas said...

Angie,
It's been said many times, but "I'm too broke to pay attention." Andyeah, I'm agreeing with you, he just mentions Freds more because he sees them more often.

Anonymous said...

Sure old ladies in swim aerobics are athletes.

They are skilled (they can swim), they are trained, at an exercise. They are athletes. I don't know where this attitude that you'd better at least be a college athlete to merit being called an athlete came from. The words kind of the reverse of hero; a totally unremarkable word for pretty much anyone who broke a sweat got turned into something that apparently means you have to be at least on the starting lineup of a NCAA team to be called an athlete.

Of course it takes skill and training, as well as physical strength, stamina, and agility to be a cyclist.

Shit, I'm about to start Cat 3 (Cat 5 to you roadies) MTB racing in a week or two, and I guarantee you I will be fucking horrible at it--- I'm an athlete. I'm not a GOOD athlete, or even a mediocre athlete--- I'm a really bad athlete. But I am an athlete, the same way that old guy in a Town Car is a driver. He bears little resemblance to Jeff Gordon, yet he is what he is.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Bable on, Your Electra is an Amsterdam, is it not? Did you know that Electra holds a contest every year to find models for their catalogue? You would surely be a contender.

Mario's Albino Tadpole said...

Snob,

Does stringing together some words about a certain subject, and getting someone to publish it make that person an author?

Freds are not athletes and you are no author. Would you agree?

Mario's Albino Tadpole said...

I miss Vito your helper monkey.. I searched your blog and the last reference to him was like back in 2009, but that doesn't sound right...

Anyway, More Vito Please.. yes, that's what I need.

leroy said...

I am always polite to tourists on the Brooklyn Bridge. They're our guests. And really, what's so bad about taking a leisurely ride over an architectural marvel? If I'm too tired to deal with the traffic, I take the Manhattan Bridge. Better graffiti.

Anonymous said...

The variety lacking nasty sarcastic negativity of this blog is just tiring.

Your 11th grade English teacher said...

121 comments and nobody pointed out "They're...are not really athletes."

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?

ge said...

"Helments" is so passé. "bicycle racing hat" is so much more awesome.
http://youtu.be/OHfXDKTyN0A

Mens Overcoat said...

Nuts, that should have been "mundi". I am clearly not an apt Latin athlete.

Fred said...

I love the looks of Babble as she blows by on the Electra in five inch heels!

leroy said...

Dear Anon 11:26 PM --

My dog asked me to tell you that you forgot to add "und now is the time on Sprockets when we dance."

I have no idea what's up with the Teutonic accent he's using. It's not like he's a German shepherd.

bikesgonewild said...

...i'm thinkin' we need a big fredtastic group hug here...

...but if leroy's dog hears tell of it, well, we all know how that can play out...

...somebody who doesn't wanna get licked is usually the one who does get licked & likly as not, in an inappropriate place...

...anatomically, that is...

Suresh A said...

Thanking you for this blog owner i will visit again

live samachar

Serial Retrogrouch said...

oh, but there's cunt in cuntry

JB said...

The Freds are restless.

McFly said...

Would you like to pet my monkey?

Anonymous said...

Just like it's not French its Frenchette. Fr3ds aren't athletes, they're athletish.

Anonymous said...

To Mario's Albino Thepole. He's not an author, he's authorish.

ChamoisJuice said...

McFly,

Funny story, but that makes you a GAPER, not a FRED.

Also the title "Wheelie King" is taken already....
Link Gemini Wheelie King

Fritz said...

R U a Fred or a Wilma?

ChamoisJuice said...

Fritz,
the Fred Society already addressed "Freds" in Cycling.
NO FREDS?!?!?!

"The roots of the term "Fred" are unclear, though some believe it originated from[2] a touring rider named Fred Birchmore from Athens, GA. In 1934-35, Birchmore rode around the world on a bicycle he named Bucephalus. Birchmore and Bucephalus traveled approximately 25,000 miles. Bucephalus is now on display at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.[3][4][5][6] In one famous incident while touring in Italy, Birchmore passed a bunch of racers during a race he had crossed paths with by chance. And despite going up hill on his loaded 50 pound non-racing bike, he passed the finish line well ahead of the racers. The cheering crowd at the finish line assumed him to be the winner of the race. In addition to the Birchmore origin idea for "Fred," there also is a vague idea that there was an old grumpy touring rider named Fred (but probably not Birchmore) from which the term derived.[7]


A southern California bicycle store printed and sold "No Freds" t-shirts in the early-to-mid 1980s to local racing cyclists. This t-shirt depicted a hairy-legged, bearded cyclist (with bug-splatted teeth) wearing sunglasses and a Bell "Biker" hard-shell helmet (with rear-view mirror attached).[8] At the time, very few racing cyclists wore sunglasses due to their (then) lack of functionality, and virtually none wore hard-shell helmets until they became mandatory in 1986. Few racing cyclists wore helmets outside of racing events until advances in technology allowed lighter, better ventilated helmets to exist in the market.
There are different theories how the term moved from its first definition of a regular guy on a simple old bike, to the definition of guy who has spent way more on his bike than his riding would merit."

FRED already has a definition... this reappropriation of Fred bothers me in the same way people trying to rename the "bunnyhop", the "j-hop" bugs me, or the way FTW has come to mean "for the win", instead of "fuck the world".

Fritz said...

right and the are angry quote...

"Whomever dreamed up the “NO FREDS” concept must have thought they were attacking a pretty docile and unconcerned group. They couldn’t have been more incorrect! We Freds will persevere and one day, the roadways will be free of negative Fred references."

ChamoisJuice said...

GOOGLE IMAGE SEARCH "FRED CYCLIST"

http://www.bikinfred.com/2012/02/bicycle-touring-is-it-for-you-part-i/


I REST MY CASE!

sumner said...

I spent 26 yrs. in the bike biz &
consider myself a bikeman for life.
this blog gives me a full on belly laugh every day. thanks.

Anonymous said...

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