This week is kind of a big deal for me. For the first time in over a year, I have no plans. Zero. Not a single plan to do anything at all. Even though it might drive me insane, it is giving me a good opportunity to catch up on DC and make some words. Constantly being on the move tends to make my mail pile up at the house. When I have time, I attack it in batches and sometimes there are some surprises in the pile. Some are unpleasant, like that unpaid speeding ticket from the last time I was in Iowa. Whoops. But other times, I get great surprises from my friends out in the bike universe. It seems like everyone around me is having a super productive year and they are cranking out some great stuff. You can’t stop the hustle! Here is a little sampling of what has come in the mail recently.
Years ago we reviewed some bits from Tallac. They are at it again with a cool new bike lock. It breaks into four pieces and fits in a little case, about the size of a burrito. My bike hasn’t been stolen yet… check them out HERE
I’m a big fan of the web sites adventure-journal.com and semi-rad.com and they both recently put out a couple of good books. This is the first issue of Adventure Journal’s badass new quarterly magazine. It is chock full of great photos and stories from the outdoors. (You can subscribe to HERE) Brendan’s latest book is a memoir of how climbing and the outdoors saved him from himself. It’s a gutsy story to put out there into the world, but he pulls it off well and keeps it entertaining. It’s a great read and I would highly recommend it (even if it is about quitting drinking). You can check it out HERE and we were on this podcast together recently HERE
Do you demand respect and authority? Pit Viper has the market cornered on ironic sunglasses. They found us on Instagram and we quickly realized that we are cut from the same cloth. We are very serious about not being serious. They make some funny videos on youtube along with some colorful eyewear.
Our buddy Tupper is a wizard with a sewing machine and makes all kinds of bags for your bicycle. I have used his frame bags on a bunch of big trips because they are simply the most reliable thing I have ever used. He sent me this downtube bag that holds a bunch of beer and told me it was for “#beerpacking” – but it also holds things like my collapsable fishing pole and my lunch really well. Check out everything from Becker Gear
The fine folks at EcoXGear make some nifty little bluetooth speakers that are loud and waterproof… rechargeable and fairly idiot resistant. I’ve been beating up on this little thing for about a month now, and it hasn’t budged. It’s a lot lighter than others I have had in the past, so taking it along on a ride is even easier. It even came with a handlebar mount.
I don’t know who the guys at Crust Bikes are, but all of our mutual friends say that we would get along really well. They have a great Instagram feed and like to ride bikes for many days at a time. They surprised me with a little care package the other day and I’m pretty stoked on it. Best I can tell, they are selling t-shirts and patches to fund their next big trip. Which is way cooler than doing a Kickstarter…Check out their store HERE … No Lycra. No Strava. No Problem!
We sure do have some great friends out there.by