The lone activist tried and failed to get a sign put up for a bike path.

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About 5 months ago, I told the City of Mt. Vernon and the Mayor, Bud Norris, in a very professional, well written letter, that the very busy boulevard College Way is dangerous for cyclists, while there is a bike path that is a gorgeous green bike haven parallel to it, in fact, a short cut.  I asked for a sign west bound pointing to the path to guide cyclists onto the path.  Any bicycle tourists coming in from the South or East would end up on College Way and they would have no way of knowing that there is a bike path that leads directly to town. It is a strip full of commercial entities and not that appealing. I gave several good, solid reasons why a sign was desperately needed, and mentioned that there is a sign Eastbound that points to the last bit of the path (leading nowhere) but this sign would be seen only by someone LEAVING town, not arriving. It is the most stupid place for a sign. I explained how a bicycle tourist first arriving Westbound would wind up at I-5 and conclude that Mt. Vernon is a shit hole and keep riding, unless guided to the bike path which would lead the cyclist into the better part of the city, where they would be charmed.

The little City of Mt. Vernon has a small quaint down town with a lot of law offices, trinket shops, and a nice coop – in fact, the food coop is the best thing about the city.  The surrounding sprawl is a blight.  I lived there for about 9 months and was never yelled at or shoved around by drivers more in my life. I was going to do an interview of a retarded guy that rides around with a radio, an antenna, and a safety vest and call it: “Mt. Vernon’s other cyclist” but that would have been too scathing.  There are many weekend cyclists there, with road bikes and kits, but literally only a handful who choose to ride as primary transportation.

There are no bicycle racks at most of the businesses, including the DSHS building where the poorest of the poor go to get benefits, yet there are heavy duty bike racks along the path where no one would lock up a bike. The city spent money on those racks but not on guidance to get people to the path.

I stated three times during various communications (including him returning my call) the mayor that TWO signs were needed – but especially one on College Way, and WEST BOUND – I made this clear.  You can see the bike path entrance from Riverside but not from College Way.  Some months later I was emailed and told that one of the signs would be installed “for me” on Riverside, but the one on College Way would need to be brought up at the next committee meeting in a couple of months because it was forgotten. 

Mt. Vernon claims it is America’s most live-able city. I lived on the wrong side of the city, surrounded by noise and pollution. I had to cross College Way every day – it is a very busy boulevard.

One thing is for sure – the City of Mt. Vernon could give a rat’s ass about its cyclists.  I was paid lip service by the mayor about how he values recreation and exercise and I stated that bicycles for me, and a growing number, are main transportation. I told him the sign isn’t for me, but for the betterment of the community. Three or more people told me it was weeks before they even knew there was a bike path! A sign getting people off of the busy road and onto the path could save a life, I stated.

After waiting about 8 weeks to hear back about my sign request and then finding out that the sign that I had put the most emphasis on would not be put up, I wrote an angry letter back to the mayor.  Since that day, I have not heard back from him.  All communication with these insular, petty people has to be organic sugar coated or you are ignored. 

Mt. Vernon, Washington – this cyclist has left your regressive city and hopes to never return.  I tried to do one thing to make it a better, more welcome place, and truly – it should not be like pulling teeth to get one fucking sign up. I put a lot of effort and patience into this activism. I was professional and nice as long as I could be, but it got me nowhere. My honey did not work, so I got out the vinegar.

If you care to support my cause for a sign SPECIFICALLY on WEST BOUND COLLEGE WAY write to this guy. Hugs and free sunshine enema kits to all! Have a puppy kisses and laughter filled day!! :-) :-)

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About littlejar

5 - Learned to ride in paved alley behind liquor store in Lowell. 16 - Road bike riding alone while peers do soccer practice. 18 - First new road bike bought with winnings from Project Graduation. 20 - Burlington VT. Nuff said. 22 - Joined the Air Force. 23 - Joined team Fair Wheel in Tucson - rode the Shootout. 24 - Rode El Tour in under five. 26 - Toured to Quebec City 28 - Toured Oklahoma to Vermont 30 - Found my dream bike - a 1989 58cm LaBan (#22) 32 - Experienced Minneapolis and saw BIKE CULTURE. 34 - Building my first bicycle frame, with a self made jig. USA

179 Replies to “The lone activist tried and failed to get a sign put up for a bike path.”

  1. Was I the only one who made it to the end of this rant?

    Activism has its place, but what did we learn from Jesus, MLK and Gandhi?
    As a member of the ‘DC cycling community’, I appreciate the efforts of those who serve to better our causes. However, I worry that SOME idiots do nothing but shut down dialogue with their venomous lack of tact, resulting in harm to our image.

    The squeaky wheel gets the grease, but the ranting lunatic gets the boot.

  2. Just stop.

    I almost said ‘hi’ to you at Salmon Bay Playground, but you were so sullen – sitting at the picnic table, (head hanging, drunk?, while trying to figure out whether to open your laptop or not), that you just reminded me of a tenderized, angry, beaten puppy. I stayed away.

    BTW – don’t be surprised that parking and setting awhile in your pedo-van at a children’s playground isn’t popular with the locals. If I didn’t know who you were, I would have been suspicious too…


    Queue righteous anger in 1, 2…

  3. elbowspeak –

    Totally sober at Salmon Bay. I was happy and free; simply working on my paperwork and living my easygoing life. I was very, very cheeful that day. Not sullen. Everything you wrote in comment 2 is your imagination. I don’t understand how I looked tenderized and angry. You s
    hould have said HI – but you’re one of them closed minded, uptight Seattle-ites… the majority indeed. You people live in a picture perfect dream world while the surrounding communities are PURE HELL – all because the rich hoard the wealth and hoard every place that is nice. You’ve created an exclusivity like nothing I’ve ever seen before… expect it to not last.
    Pedo-van? Fuck you, alright! Living in a truck does not equal pedophile, you fucking arrogant asshole. Keep perpetuating FEAR and EXCLUSION – the days of keeping out the poor from your upper middle class dream will soon end, because there’s only so much abuse and theft that people can take.

    You try living near College Way and Laventure in Mt. Vernon, trading your nice professional privilege for a white trash shit hole – and tell me what you think then. This shit needs to be talked about, because it’s the negative reality that you privileged fucks don’t want to face.

    Keep ignoring me and everyone else that isn’t exactly like you. Keep it up.

  4. And you don’t know who I am, because you dare not ask. Anything that is different or unusual is an affront to your cookie-cutter idea of reality.

    I truly have tried to peacefully co-exist and have been cheerful and smiling at every new encounter. It’s always my dog that gets the greeting while I get ignored. My pants aren’t fashionable enough. I don’t look NEW all over. Oh yeah – and I CHOSE to live in a truck instead of pay rent to you rich privileged assholes… what an offensive thing to do, indeed.

    I will last a long, long time, and I will continue to do WHAT I WANT and SAY WHAT I WANT. If you don’t like it, I don’t care.

  5. Here is the actual letter in response, as a mean and bad person who cares enough to say something – in response to hearing that one but not two signs would go up, and then they would ‘have a meeting about the other one in September:

    This could save a life, if only this city would prioritize something as simple as a tiny sign on College Way.

    Two months ago I asked the mayor to put in only TWO signs that would lead people OFF OF COLLEGE WAY IN-BOUND to the bicycle path. The other would be near Habitat for Humanity where the path begins, East bound – that’s WHERE IT BEGINS, not where the current sign is now. 5 weeks ago, he told me that it would be done. HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET TWO SMALL SIGNS UP??? I have mentioned this three times now, this is the fourth time. I still see bicycle tourists riding down College Way and they could be on the safer, quieter, nicer bike path. Why this is taking more than 8 weeks to do, I have no explanation for. There are bicycle racks on the path where no one would park a bicycle, but no bicycle racks in front of most businesses in this city. I see very idiotic reasoning behind putting a rack on the bike path before putting signs up guiding people AWAY from COLLEGE WAY and onto the bike path. Does this make sense?

    This sign is NOT FOR ME – it is for the benefit of people on bicycles IN MOUNT VERNON. I already know where the path is. I am not acting out of self interest one bit.

    The sign on College way is only visible EAST BOUND which is useless – because a cyclist seeing this sign would be already heading out of town and would have ridden the most dangerous part of the highway already. SEVERAL PEOPLE HAVE TOLD ME THEY WERE UNAWARE OF THE BIKE PATH UNTIL THEY STUMBLED UPON IT. I didn’t know about it until 2 weeks after living here. College way is VERY DANGEROUS and a sign facing WEST BOUND traffic. I repeat myself over and over because the city seems to have a listening problem. There is ONE sign pointing to KULSHAN TRAIL it is on the corner of COLLEGE WAY and LAVENTURE and it is only visible EAST BOUND, which means a person would get only 1/3 of the bike path if they departed off of College Way onto the trail, and the section of path that they would see goes NO WHERE.
    It is a stupid place for one sign to be. If only one sign is up, it should be visible WEST BOUND. As a daily cyclist in Mt. Vernon, why does my observation matter so little to you?

    I PROPOSED A SIGN ON 18TH AVE OR 19TH AVE AND COLLEGE WAY, FACING ****WEST BOUND***** SO THAT NEWCOMERS ON BICYCLES TO MOUNT VERNON CAN SEE THAT THERE IS A SAFE SHORT CUT TO TOWN. There is currently no sign of a bike path for any west bound traffic. I cross College Way every day and enter by 19th ave.


    Get with the times, Mt. Vernon. It is claimed that this is a great small city to live in, but it is very bicycle UNFRIENDLY, especially on College Way and 2nd Ave (Riverside)

    Can I put a sign up myself??

    Again, WEST BOUND on COLLEGE WAY needs, desperately, a SIGN with a BICYCLE ON IT. That’s WEST BOUND on COLLEGE WAY.
    This could save someone’s life or prevent someone for getting seriously injured. Not to mention, if a newcomer to Mt. Vernon sees only the *shit* side of the city, that is, College Way, and misses the bike path entirely, it could mean revenue loss for local businesses. Clear guidance should be given to cyclists as to where the safe, green path is. I simply do nun understand why I have to speak up about it and also don’t understand why nothing is done about it after I present a compelling reasoning for it.

    This sign is NOT FOR ME – it is for the benefit of people on bicycles IN MOUNT VERNON. I already know where the path is. I am not acting out of self interest one bit.


  6. Seriously LJ,

    Take this like you want others to take you (passively and without negative reaction).

    Get happy, get laid, get SOMETHING (look, internet yelling!), but do it soon.

    You really need to either grow up and learn to talk to other humans, or move somewhere where you can be an utter jackoff to someone and they suck your ego-cock for it.

    Having a venue to vent frustration is awesome, and no doubt mentally healthy, but your posts and the inevitable rants and tangents that come along with them are fast becoming a septic wound at DC (IMO).

    Your first half-sentence, “Allow me to get negative on you for a bit…” is overkill. All I need to see to know that is “littlejar” next to the “Author” section.

    You seriously see nothing wrong with your letter to the mayor?


    How hard would it have been to write a pro looking letter asking for change, and upon receiving confirmation that the action was only partially taken, (gasp) write another proffesionally worded note asking why the job was only half done.
    I don’t doubt that it was emotionally fufilling to write that letter, but it did nothing but hurt every other rider in the community and any other bicycle advocates that come after you during this mayor’s term(s).

    Screaming from the wilderness does little, and change only comes from within. Until you can slip into the sheep’s clothing and get into the system, all you will ever be is the dude on the corner with the sign that says “The end is near”.

    Seriously though, your truck works now, go somehwere that makes you happy.

  7. …too bad ‘somebody’ wasn’t around during the french revolution…

    …i can just picture ‘somebody’ up on the scaffold, enjoying “reading the charges” & pulling the rope handle on the guillotine & feeling wonderfully justified as that sharpened blade rapidly descended…

    …just daydreamin’…

  8. Wow: a few posts about cycling, then this. I’m so glad I checked in. I’m sure by now everyone except you realizes that you just can’t help it. Too bad cycling doesn’t help with character disorders, just everyday unhappiness.

  9. Mt. Vernon WA is a crappy little town, always has been. Haven’t ridden there myself, but I’ve heard good things about the country south and west of town, towards Stanwood and that. 48 miles in 2 h 55 m, keep the rubber side down, y’all.

  10. 2 thoughts

    you were barking up the wrong tree
    borrow the orange vest from the other cyclist and put the signs in yourself

  11. None of you read the communication to the mayor and the Rec department BEFORE I was told that the important sign would not go up. It was as professional and sweet as it can get. It DID NOT WORK – that’s my point. I’m pissed AFTER the fact, and you would be too. So much email, so much talk, lots of ass kissing got me NOWHERE – so thus the rant. Not everything I write is negative or ranting, people. Scroll down. And seriously – I’m not unhappy, just unhappy with Mt. Vernon’s vermin for being anti-bicycle

    I take so much heat when I write something like this but when I write sunshine and love, I get praise. It’s ridiculous that even here on I have to sugarcoat in order to get a fair response.

    I was told that if I put a sign in myself, it would get removed. Otherwise I would have, and then ‘end of story’. So much for that.
    I’m not spreading hate here – I’m expressing how I tried to get a sign put up for a damn good reason, and that I ran into local bureaucracy that is frankly anti-bicycle, from what I can tell. That’s why I’m angry.
    My point is:
    I’m done being the lone activist; the only person giving a shit enough to try to make such a sweeping revolutionary change as getting a tiny bike path sign up. I put the effort in – what the fuck did YOU do? Fuck you naysayers and critics for seeing 1/3 of the picture and drawing your conclusions about me, my character, or what I stand for. It’s a glaring safety issue and I take it very seriously, while you shit birds laugh.

  12. And one more thing… What we learned from Jesus, MLK, and Ghandi is this:

    Do enough good, and they will KILL YOU.

  13. You expected a city to put up two signs, because one resident (who doesn’t own a home in the town) said they should? And then got irate when they took a few months to consider it? You have no clue how city bureaucracy and politics work. I’m not disagreeing with your cause, just your tactics. That shit takes months to years with well organized cycling clubs promoting the cause in towns that are cycling friendly. Yes, with something as seemingly trivial as some well placed signage. The fact that you got them to even acknowledge that they needed one sign, even if it was in the wrong place, was a victory. Yeah, that’s fucked up, but take it where you can.

  14. LatrineJar,

    Don’t go away mad, just go away.

    Fucking waste of bandwidth.

    Y’all take care out there, y’hear.

  15. Ease up on the chamomile brother LJ. yer shit gets hacked on because it’s self-righteous in its guise irregardless(sic) of your intentions. You flame on and on about how everyone is wrong, and that shit is received like an axe handle in the hand. People become callous and your contempt is met with equal response. In fact, it’s somewhat perplexing that you would even have a problem with how these situations on DC unfold unless you really believe that a good bludgeoning is the only way to get people to agree with you. And if that’s the case, keep enjoying those nights in the van with the crickets and your thoughts because nobody wants that shit. I repeat, we’re all cyclists here.

    It’s a very slight bummer that both signs didn’t get put up per your requirement. But one did, and that is a win. A huge one in fact. You changed Mt. Vernon for the better. You left an indelible mark and did it for the cyclists. But what part of this effort to change the car culture into a paceline of cyclists was supposed to be easy? Your desire to throw it away as a failure of the system is narrow in scope. Nothing is going to change due to the drop of a thought on a blog, nor one well written letter regarding “what is right”. This shit takes time upon generations. Find a pace that you can handle until the end of time. Or, in other words, lighten up, but keep plugging away because what you want, is good.

  16. LJ remember when people used to say to you. “Lighten up Francis.” That might be coming back. Just sayin’

  17. …i can’t for the life of me, understand how a person like you, who has the intellectual capacity to be so aware of the many problems hindering this world & honestly, lj, you are intelligent well beyond “the norm”, yet at the same time you constantly cut off your nose to spite your face…not “on occasion” but constantly…

    …you could have a shit-ton of support from a majority of the folks who comment here as regards so much that you are concerned about because they are the concerns of so many intelligent people but rather you inevitably & invariably manage to alienate even those folks because you don’t bother to use real logic…

    …logic doesn’t only apply to your outward stance of how to “deal with the worlds problems”, it also applies to an inner balance that should have you realizing your approach, for the most part, doesn’t seem to work (does it ???) so therefor it may just be time to change your game plan, so that your message is heard…

    …it will always be your call but do you honestly think you can bludgeon people into facing the truth under the guise of “well, i said it nice the first time but they just wouldn’t listen”

    …you want the world to wake up & accept responsibility for it’s actions, littlejar ???…then just when the fuck are you gonna wake up & face the responsibility of communicating with others in a manner befitting an intelligent adult ???…because that’s what it is, a responsibility…

    …you post a long rambling concern in your usual style & when people verbally “roll their eyes” you are as defensive & abusive as a recalcitrant child…

    …it’s up to you but i’d think about a bit more of a zen approach…no doubt about it, lj, you do have worthwhile things to share but you blanket everything with “attitude”…people aren’t gonna buy it…

    …even here…

  18. @bikesgonewild ,

    that is one fucking awesome post.

    Way to bring the wisdom of elders in here.

    On a more mundaine level one of the issues that I have with LJ is that he is obviously unemployed, yet I as one of these Rich Assholes, (who is earning the industry average), is spat at.

    i have a serious issue that this is an example of ‘my tax dollars at work’ or not…

  19. …@ webwanderer…to be honest, in trying to be somewhat polite & accommodating as regards senor pequena jarra, i rather soft painted the edges of my observations to the extent that perhaps lj might, glean something of value for himself…

    …but in retrospect, when i read the almost violent bitter vitriol that spews from the fingertips of senor jarra when readers don’t agree with his observations, i’m almost amazed at my undoubted naivety…

    …i’d suggest that while lj has some of the same real concerns of many of us, he tilts at windmills of improbability that he alone finds valid…

    …in other words, he seems at times not to be able to distinguish between his friends & his enemies & i believe there is an issue of perspective that needs be addressed & undoubtedly kept in check over the course of a lifetime…

    …but then again, whether lj gleans anything from any of us or not, quite honestly, it’s ixnay my problemo & i can walk/ride away when i want…i’m willing to help anyone that’s willing to help themselves but it’s not my policy to ‘enable’ people who won’t help themselves…

    …not even fucking close…

  20. I wonder what the folks would have done if you had gone out and put up a few signs….
    i wonder.
    An alum sign with white background and black reflective letters about 18″ long and 9″ tall would prolly run about 40-50 bux. A 2″ piece of EMT from home depot is about 6 bux. A sack of quickcrete is about 3 bux.
    Knowing you one-uped the mayor PRICELESS.
    I would even kick in some funds on that.
    maybe a lil bit of fund raising and a guerrilla sign intsal is in order.

  21. As a relative newbie to the local government payroll, I can tell you all that “…not my department…”, “…not in/from my budget…” and “…I’m not gonna be responsible for…” is prevalent. In fact it can take a nuclear detonation for any one to step out of their comfort zone and go out on a limb for anything. I have found this out the hard way, and suffered most severe hand-slap for attempting to address issues that seemed job related (and were definitely the “right thing to do”), but technically not of my concern. THe best way to address these types of issues is through your local elected official, typically these are the ego-maniacs who would like to be re-elected, and will manipulate those systems for you. That assumes, however, that you are have a lucid argument and more importantly, you are a registered voter. Living in a van down by the river may not qualify. Unfortunate, but true.

    As for my part, ramble on brother. If I get sick of the banter, I’ll just stop reading. First Amendment, anyone?

  22. somebody’s been riding a seatless post on the bumpy path of society for just a little too long…

    one’s gotta have some cushion to get along in the world.

  23. Jimmy C –

    The Parks and Rec people told me that only official signs can stay up. In their infinite wisdom, they decided that a sign was needed where you can see the path but not on the west bound stretch of College Way where you cannot see the path. If I put one up myself, it would have been removed, even if my intention was to get people off College Way and onto the path.
    I really like how the word ‘unemployed’ defines me – as though that makes me less of a person than people who have ‘jobs’ even if their ‘job’ is wasteful and harmful and they don’t believe in what they are doing. As though my status as ‘unemployed’ erases my accomplishments and education, and indeed it makes me not eligible for love or housing.
    But I’m more than unemployed. I’m UNEMPLOYABLE. That is my status today.
    In a place like Mount Vernon, legalism is the way. Everyone follows every rule right down to the letter. It is asinine to an East Coaster like me. There is no graffiti, no guerilla signage… and the one way that some frustrated fuck rebelled against this is by breaking TV glass and a toilet on the very bike path I used to use every day.
    As I said _ I AM HAPPY that I no longer live there. I live in Seattle now. Happy. This post is the LAST mention I will make on Mt. Vernon.
    If you go there, do enjoy the tulips and the nice coop – they have home made ice cream now. Then move along to Bellingham… much nicer, but still WA.

  24. Ain’t no one trying to censor lj. I think a bunch of us have tried to calm him down. He’s generally got some good ideas. There’s a place for brutal honesty, but you’d better be skilled in pulling that trigger, because most of the time tact works a lot better.

    Besides, there’s a fundamental misunderstanding about the First Amendment. Yes, you can say whatever you want. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t consequences to saying it. You have no right to a forum or pulpit to say whatever you want. You have no right to expect that you will not be criticized for saying it.

  25. Gnome –

    No, not a win. Please understand that the sign that they said they would put up (Riverside) was a ‘by the way, it would be good also if…’ mention of mine. The sign that I focused my attention on and what brought me to engaging with the local government was College Way. After I saw about three fully loaded bike tourists coming in from the East riding on College Way, I was moved to say something about the need for a simple sign making people aware of the path. For some reason, everyone thinks that this signage is ‘for me’ but I must remind Mr. Mayor and everyone else that it is not for me; I am aware of the bike path. It is for visitors to Mt. Vernon and for the citizens who live there unaware of a path because they do not know.
    Take a look at a map of Mt. Vernon – use Google Earth and zoom in. The bike path not only avoids all the danger on College Way and Riverside – it is also a short cut. There is a sign, as I mentioned, but it is at the intersection of College Way and Laventure facing Eastbound traffic, and it is not visible from the Westbound side. This current sign leads people to the last mile of that path that actually leads no where. There is also a section of bike path down the road with a ‘bike route begin’ and ‘bike route end’ and the path is literally 200yds long. They spent the money for that lunacy – but still no practical sign as I have pointed out ad-nauseum.
    Bear in mind that I explained this about 3 times in clear and concise terms, yet I was told that this got unmentioned at the meeting. The other issues I brought up were the people on 18th in cars, stopping for cyclists that are stopped and waiting to cross, when there is no stop sign there and the cars do indeed have the right of way. I saw how this could cause an accident, as one nearly happened as I waited for the cars to pass and one idiot slammed on his brakes when he saw me sitting there, behind my little stop sign on the bike path. In the end, not a win, because today bicycle tourists and newcomers to Mt. Vernon alike are unaware of the bike path. There is no bike shop in Mt. Vernon, either. The bike shop is in Burlington, and it is treacherous to get there over a very bicycle unfriendly bridge.
    Instead of criticizing me for the delivery of a scathing rebuke to the mayor about ignoring the most important part of my request – how about some support. How many of you who have criticized my language and tone are willing to write a letter to the mayor of Mt. Vernon in support of a simple sign that would make any cyclist arriving into the city (see the map) from Rt. 9 or from Sedro Wooley/Concrete aware of the path that would lead them off of the dangerous boulevard.
    Who is willing to make 1/5 of the effort I did in supporting that cause? None of you have said “Nice try, LJ… sorry that it didn’t work – tell you what… I’ll write something in support of the sign too.”
    I don’t expect that – but it would be nice. Tell me, people – after you work hard and fight for something and fail to reach the goal, do you always react in a ZEN way? Come on. There is a place for scathing rebukes for such ridiculousness – and it is HERE and NOW.

  26. Kark –

    No. That is funny, but no. I have no tattoos. What I do have is a lot of construction tools, a bike stand, a nice toolbox, no shop, and I live in a state where I cannot work for myself without a license, bond, insurance, location, and a $20,000 truck that makes me appear already successful.
    I have not worked for an hourly ‘wage’ in 5 years. I have been a student at community college for about that long. Intermittently, I fixed houses before this ‘economy’ made people zip up their wallets and stop hiring contractors. I used to make decent money and worked 3 months each year.
    As you may be aware, ‘gaps’ in a resume make people not want to hire you.
    I was told by a chef that a dishwasher position in a local restaurant got 52 applicants recently.
    An associate’s degree (I have one) does absolutely nothing for me.
    An honorable discharge after serving a full term in the military (I have one) also does nothing for me. I am not an angry raving lunatic – I just simply state what is wrong with the situation and just live my life.
    This is why I choose to not pay rent and keep the money I have. This is why I chose to invest in a 22′ bread truck and make it a cozy home. I love my home! I would indeed be a stupid fool to sign a lease, or spend 4 months paying rent and then run out of cash. I truly believe that Northwesterners, as I’ve been told, have a mentality of: “Feed the fatted, leave the rest, that’s the way we won the west” There is little room for compassion on a personal level. As I said earlier, I’m still independent, and will last a long, long time. I made a good choice to get out of being exploited by a monthly payment of $500+ while my income is near zero. I think I am a better person than every fat cat that gets paid the most to do the least work, while owning the means of production for his underlings. I leach off of no one, and have no debt to anyone.

  27. How about this take: I hate signs. My state has a real problem with sign pollution. Do we really need a sign every 10 feet on every road in and around town?

    oh, but I’m sure YOUR sign is necessary.

  28. LJ – Clearly a talented writer at times, but pick your battles and don’t touch caffeine. Smoking some herb might help with the anger management. An old concrete finisher on a job site I worked at about 20 years ago used to offer the mouthy workers a dollar to shut up. I think your up to about $30 with this rant based on reponses. I’m kind of with Jimmy C on this one…should have renegade-erected a home made sign & rode away…work done and point made.

  29. For the third fucking time – they told me that I can’t put up my own sign or it would have been removed. Otherwise I would have. Read the whole post.

  30. I would say put it up anyway
    if it is right it is right
    if it is taken down it is taken down
    sometimes action is louder than words

    in terms of your writing…jeez lj, spend some time banging out words
    write something good…or great
    ranting on blogs is not going to pay you anything
    i do rather enjoy how madcap it sometimes becomes

  31. …ah ha…& therein lies the dichotomy…

    …because it’s a bureaucracy, it will take eons before any signage change is accepted, approved, budgeted & then implemented BUT were lj to take matters into his own hands & install even the most professional looking of signs, it would undoubtedly be taken down by the works department almost immediately…

    …it’s just the way shit happens…

  32. Yep,

    It’s called the real world.

    It sucks, but we all (or most of us at least) gotta live in it! ;)

  33. Notice I edited the ‘rant’ and made it shorter and less rant-like. I won’t be going back to MV to put up any sign – I’m out of there and South is the direction I’m moving, about as slow as a gasoline powered glacier.
    Stay tuned……

  34. LJ – while we all agree w/ the intent, it is overtly apparent that the approach is not acceptable to your audience.

    It seems that you fail to comprehend that no matter how constructive/tactful/professional/courteous/graceful, etc your initial approach may have been, your response with glaring contempt of the system negates anything productive you offered prior.

    Not only that, but when you take issues like this to the municipal/official level, you are representing at the minimum, a group of people with like interests. The simple minds of bureaucracy will inevitably associate & apply their impression of the presenter/vocalist/demonstrator etc. to the group.

    this is why you seldom see demonstrators/protesters effecting any real change for their cause beyond a temporary compromise… which is usually only agreed to to get them to shut up & go away. it’s just not an effective means to garner change.

    My point is that you complain about a municipality being behind the times when it comes to cycling as a legitimate transportation. Do you honestly believe that the way you handled the situation did anything to change their position? Do you think you were in any way influential in promoting cycling to the city staff?

    why not stick around and fight the good fight? get some support instead of playing the martyr. prove it’s possible to turn a negative into a positive. head on down to your councilpersons office w/ some dignity and a little humble pie. Do some research and find out what they spent on that path and how much it costs to maintain it. Then appeal to their sensibilites and show them how it could be more utilized and appreciated.

  35. My kid is having afew friends over. One of them brought her two month old baby. The little dear is teething and hungry and making a fine racket in the family room. I think I will listen to that instead. Later.

  36. Zen is not the answer for LJ. I suggest Taoism. Try Lombardo’s translation of the Tao Te Ching and any modern edition of Chuang Tzu.

    And yes, stay off the caffeine, by all means.

    LJ, much less will often be much more. Nobody is going to make it through those letters of yours. Too long and nasty and hard on the eyes, brain, psyche, and ears. You can call people lazy assholes for not getting through them, or you can write letters they will read. One of those options is guaranteed not to work.

    And you are not going to live long with that kind of angry flame burning away in you, my friend. You are going to produce nothing but great examples of why the world is so against you, over and over and over.

  37. LJ – you are clearly on your way to living in a Montana cabin. Just please don’t start mailing out packages…

  38. In Montana, you call your cabin a “compound” if you have at least one outbuilding. And who doesn’t? Even better, you get to call your property an “area” if you’re the only mailbox within sight. You ask a lot of questions. Get off my property.

  39. Tip, to everyone involved, that my old sansei use to say; “Never try and punch a fire it will only burn you.” “Never argue with an as. People from a distance will not be able to tell who is the ass.”

    LJ: You got angry with a man who is a puppet. He has people that read his emails and do his responses. Therefor you where arguing or yelling at an ass. Or actual the pet ass of many burros. I understand the frustration with people, I have been there for awhile. I am not sure of your age, as if that has anything to do with anything, but you remind me of me in my twenties. Just “Screaming at a Wall”. I have found that anger and doing things to try and piss off others only incites rage against you and your cause. Look at Critical Mass and Midnight Ridazz. Good intentions but just pissing off every driver in their areas.

    Everyone else, I have seen these rants back and forth with LJ for some time. You all get angry and all that ends up happening is you are frustrated.

    Ride On

    Ride Safe

  40. …hey…didya’ hear ???…i think somebody said littlejar is gonna live w/ hannah montana…

    …sweet !!!…time that boy got some ass…

  41. That did it, BGW. You made me have to weigh in on this thread:

    “Sorry, but I wouldn’t touch Hannah Montana with YOUR dick, let alone mine.”

  42. Wow, a lot of bashing of LJ! I sit here wondering what is so bad about someone writing a letter to a mayor of a crapola town and then following it up with a ranting one? Haven’t we all done that? I know I have told many o’ politik, “Go suck a Tijuana donkey schlang,” one or two times. Another uestion I ask is, What would Jesus do? Paul 4:16

  43. Poll 4 the day:
    What is cooler, an early 80’s Cannondale mtb with the 24″ rear wheel…or a full Suntour Vitus 979 with Campy delta brakes?


  44. Damn.

    I go away for a while and this place goes all viral.

    Leave lj alone. I want to keep him around.

    He makes me look good. Kind of like having a fat guy as a friend.

    Just saying…

  45. Colonelretarded –

    Nothing I do makes you look good – only the shit you write reflects your own standard of credibility. I can respond to the retard-ism, or be a bit better. It’s not what would someone else do, but what would YOUR BEST SELF do. WWYBSD. Look within. The mirror only shows so much.

    Everyone – –

    Bear in mind I’m stuck with a dog and the pretense of service related income now and can’t really live my life as it should be lived… on a bike.
    I often want to give it all up for the adversity and incredible training of riding all day every day.

    I’m not much of a writer, but I do have some good miles and some bicycle related accomplishments under my belt. This is my version of credibility. My goal is to be still riding around on a bike at 80 and still be able to do that little curb hop at 80. Or, if immobilized, at least be able to curb hop with the wheelchair, which will have wheels I hopefully laced myself.
    I hope to have made an admirable pile of kickstands, too. Somewhere in Tucson’s Feldman ‘hood (Lee st.) there’s a fence with a few of them piled up thrown there with disgust.

    Now hold the fucking presumptions and assumptions everyone. I don’t want responses to this comment. I know one of you is going to make some fucking suggestion about something without even 1/2 of the picture. Say no more.
    Go live your own life and ride your fucking bike(s) and try to do something good for the community you live in, even if you hate where you live.

  46. I think I just realized that LJ may actually stand for Lord Jesus. And he is taking 1 or 1,000,000 for the team.

    I luvs me sum martyrdom.

  47. I ask, from where I stand:
    “What are you going to die having done?”
    Remember – the greatest saints among us are examples of living that few can follow. Mother Theresa did not have time to go to mass, she said often. She did not worship and her prayer was short and sweet. Too much to do to compensate for the wrongdoing of others.
    “Are you going to go having spent your life pointing at others shortcomings, or making your own comings longer?”
    Jesus didn’t worship Christ. He answered to his God as God had spoken to him. So many today are fixated on HIM but don’t realize that each and every one of us is possibly a saint, a king, or a drunk bum begging.
    He did not found the church. I say – if Jesus were here today, he would not ‘worship’ – he would, as my friend put it:
    “Jesus would shit.”
    and then set to work in RIGHTEOUS INDIGNATION to correct the wrongness that everyone makes a book full of excuses for, and wallows within, thinking, with dollars folded away, that this bullshit is THE WAY. It’s not. Watch.

  48. As for me – you know where I stand. I’m not a saint, and I’m not anywhere close to the example of a Sadhu or a monk. I ain’t gonna be no willing martyr. If sued for cloak, I’ll put a hole in a motherfucker.

  49. ….”only the shit you write reflects your own standard of credibility”

    That would be best written “only the drunk shit you write reflects your own standard of credibility”.

    Sober I’m semi normal.

    Drunk I’m an ass who too easily see’s pink elephants and leprechauns.

    Been trying to deal with that for several years now.

    When are you going to start dealing ?

  50. Does anyone remember that guy on Mill Ave. in Tempe who used to haul that cross-on-wheels around? Yeah, it’s like that.

  51. …saupak…thank you…

    …one night i was sitting around just worshiping my television & that hannah momtana/miley cyrus whoever/whatever came on letterman & i gotta say she is one creepy little chick…

    …& saupak ???it’s nice that we could have this little discussion because it kinda feels like we’ve made a contribution to the overall thread here, know what i’m sayin’ ???…

  52. …& gnomer via kilgore trout…

    …what the fuck ???…you’d readily dismiss ‘a full Suntour Vitus 979 with Campy delta brakes’ that easily ???…over ‘an early 80’s Cannondale mtb with the 24? rear wheel’ when the issue at hand is ‘coolness’ ???…

    …damnation, amigo…i’d suggest that bernard hinault himself would invite you to his house for wine & dinner if you rolled through his village in brittany on that vitus…

    …now just where in god’s name would you get that kinda response on the c-dale ???…

    …i mean, i’m just sayin’…

  53. LJ – jesus fucking trainwreck! Two words for you: Levity and Brevity. Just try and post something that is semi-lighthearted (or totally absurd) and brief. For fucks sake, man.

  54. Oh man. You did’nt get it? We’re talk’n 24 inch wheels man! GF wishes he tapped that size first.

    “Nobody ever thought about the best mtb wheel size for midgets. Midgets just rode what they had, which were beach cruiser wheels. They were incredibly in efficient. That’s why they didn’t stay in the sport. The midgets, I mean. Now, however, (re)-introducing the 24 inch wheel. We’re calling this one the “Two Fourer”. Revolutionary.”

    Damn you Cannondale!!!

  55. …okay, okay…point taken…

    …& in deference to your prescience, i’ll admit that the “darby o’gill shamrock mtb racing team, presented by guiness stout” was ahead of it’s time & if the “two fourer” had been developed earlier, well, maybe leadville woulda had to build extra steps up to that podium…

    …just surmisin’…

  56. …ps – g-fish was prob’ly too busy “tapping” somebody else…speaking of sucking & blowing…

  57. I met LJ recently on his travels thru seattle. When he told me about his postings on this site I thought it would be fun to check it out.

    I guess I’m not surprised at the quality of the replies to this post. How is judging someones character and giving half-hearted advice helpful to your DC community?

    Who in this thread would say these type of comments if LJ was standing in front of you face to face?

    This post is a diatribe of the outcome of LJ’s sole effort to improve safety for cyclists in Mt Vernon. To attack the individual defeats the purpose and the point…even if you don’t agree with his lifestyle, attitude or perspective.

  58. Somebody posted something about lightening up. Can’t remember who or when, but now would probably be a good time to post it again.

  59. If his conversation with me was in the same tone that his written statements are, you can bet I would respond exactly how I did…

    Perhaps he is a different person in the real world, and perhaps his words don’t take the same tack as they do when written(Some folks can say some mean shit and get away with it because they are charismatic about it).

    Perhaps he doesn’t speak to people like that in real life. If that is the case though, why would he communicate that way on a public site, or in a letter to a public official?
    Check his other posts. This type of post is not an isolated event.

    How is “Communicate like an adult” half-hearted advice?

    This post was a diatribe about an half-done effort to improve safety that ended with a childish letter, bridges burnt and future advocacy possibly hindered. To add to that, he would like us to think that HE had no hand in the breakdown in the situation.

    Sorry man, that shit gets called out in my book.

  60. Is that Vitus the one with the alum lugs? That shit was so sexy. Wayyyy sexier than a silly little dwarf wheel. ..and I’m a dwarf. I know. least I play one on the internet. And the suntour shit is unstoPpable. I’m still running xc pro cranks and btm brkt on my xc bike. (albeit slightly more recent vintage than that which would be found on a vitus but still.. They’re the shit.
    Tha vitus gave me sweats whenever I went down the lbs and it would be hangin there all expensive n stuff. Out of reach in every way.
    This dwarf wouldn’t cross the street for a 24″ wheel.

  61. I raced the vitus for a season in the late 80’s. It was pretty flexy, not sexy in crits, but comfy & light on the road.

  62. …’allo, ‘allo…

    …en garde’, monsieur gnomer…your 24″ rear wheel is looking smaller & smaller in light of the support my flexxy but sexxy gallic steed is garnering, eh ???…

    …vitement, mon vitus, to the front of this pelican…

  63. To Morgan and other over-reactors – the ‘tone’ is your embellishment. You can attach whatever ‘tone’ to a string of text in one unchanged font you want. It’s the reason that email about personal stuff often results in grave misunderstandings.

    Thanks, Anthony – the one person to write a response that is kind and reasonable. He’s one of the few who haven’t *snobbed” me in my Seattle adventure. This place is wonderful, but the people here are NOT warm.
    And the longer I stay here, the more I’ll suffer from a sort of frigidity of my own. To those who don’t care:

    Not doing anything about the problems in your community,
    turning your back and ignoring the needy,
    not doing jack unless somehow it pays you….
    are you *yes you* above these reproaches?
    Sorry man, that shit gets called out in my book.

  64. I visualize a two-fourer with a 29″ front wheel, a reaallly long, chrome-plated fork and dual rear-view mirrors. That shizzit would be bazadass fo sho.

  65. head tube angle about 50 degrees, highway pegs way out front for downhills, leather panniers…

  66. LJ,
    Please just think this over:

    If more than one person misunderstands or can easily misconstrue your writing “tone”, don’t you think it is fair to say that perhaps the fault is not in how they are reading it, but rather in how it is presented? At least
    somewhat? (That is honestly not meant to be a jab, but rather an honest observation, as removed from emotion as I can be.)

    I AM glad you see injustice in the world, and chose to fight rather than ignore. I just wish that you chose to attack it in a way that did not leave such a wide swath of collateral damage in your wake.

    I do really hope you do find folks that you can be happy around and that don’t give you the “cold shoulder” (The NW is infamous for that). I also really hope that it translates to contributions that are less about frustration and more about what drives you to be positive.


  67. Damn you BGW!

    The only instance within the time space continuum of the entire spectrum where a Vitus would have any traction in an argument is when it’s compared to that god damned 24″ C-dale.

    This is bullshit!

    This post is still classified as blow.

  68. Let me just sum it up for you LJ.

    If the same things keep happening to you over and over in different places and different situations, it’s not them, dude – it’s you.

  69. to piggyback on Morgan’s comment: It’s like the person who says everyone else is an idiot. Well really is everyone the idiot, or are you the problem?

  70. The one thing I’ve gotta respect (and at the same time shake my head at) in LJ’s post is that he so obviously feels he must do things by the letter of the law, when some times (and if you want it down right) you just have to do somethings your own damn self.

  71. …colonel…

    …mikey & i had occasion to meet & get in 2 rides together when he was down this way earlier this summer…i think he can tell you i’m not only slow but i am definitely one “surly pacer”

  72. …mikey…speaking of 29ers, wes williams of willits bikes (ex-salsa torch & interesting bicycle character) was the first “mtb guy” to extol the virtues of 29ers that i know of…wes only builds 29ers & he was the guy who sold g-fish on ’em back when…

    …i mention this because over 20 years ago, wes built an exquisite pedal powered chopper as a fun project…it had a tiny auxiliary gas motor mounted back down by the rear hub & wes created an exquisitely formed titanium exhaust pipe…check out:-

    …1st – click on gallery…2nd – click on willits history & then fast click to #18 & then #25 for a look at a crazy awesome bike…

    …it’s fo shizzle…dammit mikey…see what you made me do…i don’t talk that way…

  73. …gnomer…that’s hitting b-low the belt…

    …somewhere in a parallel universe, there is a vitus 979 designed with a 29″ front wheel & a 24″ rear wheel…

    “if you think it, it will manifest”…somebody, somewhere must a’ said that at sometime…

  74. 700 wheels all around. Two-four is for chilluns, dammitt!

    Aboot Crackandfail-Ask the hard working people of Bedford, PA next time you’re passing through.

    And the kind of bike you ride doesn’t make you cool. Coolness can’t be bought or bartered. It must be earned.

    Having said that, I’d ride the Vitus whoozis any time, any place.

    “My voices are having flashbacks.” Can’t remember who said that, but this thread seems to be tilting that way.

  75. @92 –

    Majority is in the right by being what? A majority?
    Truly, obviously, when I’m the only one on a bicycle surrounded by people who are driving to get around, in a category of less than 1% of the group – it must be that I AM A PROBLEM. Yes, I’M THE PROBLEM because everyone else must be right. Therefore, by your logic,it must be right to drive a car and wrong to ride a bicycle.

  76. Stop worrying what the majority thinks……..they don’t do it very often.
    To those who get so twisted by lj’s posts, ask yourselves why. If what he says is incorrect or untrue, so be it. By firing vicious remarks at him, you’re showing your true colours. I’ve said it before, if you don’t like his posts, give a reasoned argument against them, petty personal attacks merely lower the tone.
    @lj- keep on asking the difficult questions, someone has to do it.

  77. Well I DO think he’s abit young to play the cranky old man. But so am I and I’ll be 60.

    And as a resident of a Podunk little backwater that’s chockablock with the benighted unwashed, I’ve had to make my peace with things being the way they are. Weren’t easy, but it was worth it, I’ll tell you what.

  78. Don’t let the word ‘majority’ trigger false connotations of mindless obedience or sheeple or anything. That distraction is a red herring.

    In this case, majority refers to a segment of the audience and the point that was being made (I believe, apologies if incorrect) is that if;

    1) If a speaker (LJ) wishes to convey a message to an audience.
    (as would be inferred by taking the time to create a lengthy post and submit further corrections, responses, rebuttals etc.)
    2) A significant portion of the audience is not taking away the message that was intended but is misinterpreting the intended meaning.

    The speaker, in this case LJ, bears the responsibility to revise or recreate the presentation of the message to suit the audience or accept the failure to communicate and the implications/consequences of the audience taking away an alternate, incorrect or incomplete message.

    The responsibility rests *solely* on the presenter to tailor the presentation to the audience.

    note; The above tenet doesn’t apply quite so absolutely to a two way dialogue. So, it gets a bit muddy when the post which is clearly a presenter audience dynamic transitions into a two way dialogue as happens in the comments section.

    Now, can we get back to that Vitus discussion?

  79. ^^^Spot on.

    Speaking of Vitus, I still miss my 1980 Motobecane Grand Record. Vitus it was. I rode it anywhere and everywhere until a cracked headtube put it on the sideline. Took it to a framebuilder and he said it would cost more to repair than it was worth. I still miss it. But I still have the Shimano 600 gruppo. Spread amongst a couple of bikes, with some parts languishing in the parts bin.

  80. Vitus 979 = noodle. I had a friend that was a little too heavy for his and under hard braking could make the front wheel rub the downtube. No it was not broken. It was just that flexy.

    Colonel, the pacer is a fine ride. I’ve been using one as my townie for years. Comfy. Solid. Not light. I pulled a carbon fork out of the bin and that helped the ride a lot (besides dropping a full pound of the front of the bike). True, I can’t use fenders, but with 300+ days of sunshine, that’s not really an issue for me. It’s kind of sick actually, its a mishmash of old parts like gen 1 XTR rr der, Chorus square-taper cranks run single chainring, Bontrager Race Lite wheels, Lemond Fork, flat bars… It has a serious identity crisis, but it gets more ride time than anything else I own right now.

  81. Alls I knows is it was fun to ride. You remember “fun”, peewee? Why the fuck else would you get on a bike?

  82. “Armstrong adds communications strategist to defense team”

    …that’s what you need, little jar, a “communications strategist”…after the lance thingy has run it’s course, you could hire ‘spin doctor Mark Fabiani’

    …he puts on the spin, you get your messages across & we wouldn’t feel the need to kill the messenger…

    …no, honestly…no charge for the idea…enjoy…

  83. Good on ya, el jefe. And all serious aside, she WAS abit flexy. Hoo-ee, she even autoshifted sometimes on an out of the saddle climb. But tons of fun just the same.

  84. Taking in to account LatrineJar’s illustrious military service & as one military man to an other,

    I reminded of that old story

    A proud mother went to the graduation parade of her son who had recently completed basic training.

    As the company marched past, the lady jumped up & loudly exclaimed that her son was the only one in step.

    Just saying ….

  85. Alrighty…the Vitus/C-Dale poll was a resounding victory for Le Lawn Chair du France.
    Next up: Which is cooler…Late 80′ Mt. Goat Whiskeytown Racer (Orange and Green), or Late 80’s Merckx 7 11 team bike?


  86. Ref. post #113…anyone got both of those in their garage right now?
    If so, where do you hide your key?

  87. …nice…

    …so i can expect a call from either of you two “62cm-er-ers” if that sebenty-leben eddy merckx comes up in, say a 57, 58 ???…

    …yep…real nice…

    …& not being a purist about this shit, it’ll prob’ly end up a white taped, drop bar, campagnolo equipped, free wheel single speed…

    …beauty, eh ???…

  88. …there’s a cadence being called, and indeed it does happen that an entire flight is out of step including the guidon bearer. (that was me, in basic that is, by the way) I was never latrine crew or latrine ‘queen’… but I spent some time in there trying to shit when the shit would not come.
    DRESS! COVER! INTERVAL! DISTANCE! Four variables that all have an ideal measurement.
    Last night, or early this morning in my cozy truck I dreamed I was, due to an anomaly of few people voting, elected to state congress. I had failed to check the roster and was 45 or so days late to taking my seat. So, there I show up on Monday morning at noon, and am introduced to my new job.
    The freshman senator was then asked if he’d like to take the majority whip position, because no one wanted it. I said: “I’m not experienced enough at this to be the whip, but thanks.” What a great dream!

  89. i stumbled in here following that awesome Brian Lopes video at whistler crankworx…

    wow, and i mean wow, what a thread…

    so what have we learned?
    you can’t be shouting at anybody “fukcing this” and “fuching that” as they generally don’t respond well.
    expecting any government bureaucracy to move in two months is laughable,
    it took advocates here fifteen years to get a downtown bridge lane.

    obviously in this age where gov’t is broken, you must look at what outcome you want before you begin and take the best action to achieve it. seems here the gurilla approach would have worked if that was your first action, forget the letter writing–what policraptician is going to respond to a constituency of one?

    LJ I congratulate you on getting yourself out from under the ownership society and wage/debt slavery, yet remember that even seemingly progressive elements in society see you as a threat.
    as a fellow ranter and raver, i sympathise, and know these are hard lessons to learn.

  90. “…there’s a cadence being called, and indeed it does happen that an entire flight is out of step including the guidon bearer. (that was me, in basic that is, by the way) I was never latrine crew or latrine ‘queen’… but I spent some time in there trying to shit when the shit would not come.
    DRESS! COVER! INTERVAL! DISTANCE! Four variables that all have an ideal measurement.
    Last night, or early this morning in my cozy truck I dreamed I was, due to an anomaly of few people voting, elected to state congress. I had failed to check the roster and was 45 or so days late to taking my seat. So, there I show up on Monday morning at noon, and am introduced to my new job.
    The freshman senator was then asked if he’d like to take the majority whip position, because no one wanted it. I said: “I’m not experienced enough at this to be the whip, but thanks.” What a great dream!”

    Sorry. Had to repeat it all.

    It’s not a dream.

    It’s a delusion.

    You live in a fantasy land.

    Pull out now.

  91. So you don’t understand how I write or why I write
    mistaking which part is fact and which is not
    but further than that – your aim is to harm, and therefore you suck.
    You’re a real piece of shit, to write to people like that.
    People I know who know me don’t say this kind of shit.
    They encourage me.
    I share thoughts and memories, try to be slightly humorous, and get this…
    this what is it?
    An encouragement to kill myself?
    Colonel, you sick fuck!
    You trash everything I say on this blog, no matter what it is.
    You haven’t met me, don’t know really a thing about me, yet there you are
    spewing your pointless neagitivity. At least I have a point. I have a reason to stay in. You? What do you stahd for, with such gross things to say to people. Are you a gross, sick person? If so, I just feel bad for you. I’d ask you to ‘quit this’ or ‘stop that’ but frankly, I don’t give a shit one bit, shit bird.

  92. wow.
    so we’ll just say the 7-11 Merckx takes it.

    funny thing is, you two, I bet if you guys anonymously ran into each other on a ride (and you both better as fuck ride) you’d probably share in the two wheeled joy.

    It’s us vs. the normals, dudes.

    cycling is amazing…go try some


  93. …lj…you do tend to read a lot into what people say to you & then it seems you use it to head off in a new & unwarranted direction which then in turn draws more ire…

    …at least that’s my opinion…

    …& kgt ???…’member, if it’s a a 57cm, i got first dibs, z’all right ???…

  94. Latrine Jar,

    I saw nothing in the Colonel’s post that inferred that you should kill yourself.

    You seriously need help & while I could say that you should seek it, at this stage all good will is exhausted, so I really couldn’t give a shit either way.

    & to remind you of your name because you have obviously forgotten, in a previous post you stated “I was a military brick shithouse”

  95. got it dude.
    But I’m keepin the 59.

    I guess at 36 years old the green red and white is still the most Pavlovian of all color schemes to me. When I was 12 that was all I wanted in the whole world (well, and to feel some titties)….I haven’t changed much. In fact, I’m currently rounding up late 80’s Dura Ace 7400 parts to put my old Rock Lobster together.

    Those Mapei bikes that all the drugged out hard men were winning the classics on in the mid 90’s are boner inducing as well.

    So, DC’ers, what bikes give you the wood?

  96. I’d love any of a dozen classic rides from the mid to late 80’s ..I think a panasonic would be cool for conversation starting. but regardless of the frame, I’d kill or die to have it all dolled up with the Sante version of 600.
    matched with pearl paint job on the frame I think it’d be dead sexy.

  97. I’m pretty partial to my Serotta CDA. It was always too bad that they had to put Huffy on the ones they made for 7-11. I remember the first one I ever rode. Pearlescent black and Kelly green decked out in Ultegra 600. Built it up at the shop I was working at in Davis. Almost bought it on the spot. It was the first time a bike just fit perfectly. Should have. Waited 15 years to get mine. I will go to my grave with it.

  98. I’ve got a 58cm 1991 Davis Phinney Serotta for sale at for 600 bones. Full 80’s dura-ace / cinelli / with Campy record High / low flange tubular wheel set. Classic & solid, fairly experienced, but never raced. I’m sure CJ can sent out photos if anyone is interested. Helps me get closer to my goal of a Surly Pugsley single-speed.

  99. Dude, nothin personal, but do you HAVE to get rid of the Serotta to get the Pugsley?

    There’s gotta be another way.

    Though it would fit me……

  100. I know…too many bikes that I don’t use anymore. I am currently keeping two old steel steeds…1972 motobecane le champion and 1984 rossin track bike.

  101. Five years and 8000 miles later, I still get it up every time for the Trophy Bike (Scott CR1 w/D-A).

    Threw down the ‘cross bike yesterday morning, crossing a dry creek bed full of pea gravel. I crossed up the front like a total n00b. Fuck, I’m too old to be hitting the deck. First time this season, though.

  102. ah, ‘cross season.


    Specialized finally got it together and are making a race worthy ‘cross frame.

    it’s called the Crux….and it comes in hot pink.
    awww yeah

  103. …hmmm, kgt…what bike would give me wood ???…well, not that i’d be willing to put much time & effort into thinking about this but what i might suggest is…

    …an original lugged columbus steel frame in beautiful burnt orange w/ ‘world championship’ bands spanning the deep blue downtube panel & those magical yellow letters spelling out ‘eddy merckx‘…foil stickers on the seattube in both yellow & pink representing ‘le tour’ & ‘il giro’, along w/ diamond shaped foil headtube & seatube badges featuring a black & white photo of merckx himself surrounded by the ‘rainbow bands’

    …elegant white cloth taped cinelli bars & milled stem w/ black cables leading into natural gum rubber hoods on campagnolo brake levers…a black unpadded leather unicanitor mounted on a milled seatpost…
    …a full selection of campagnolo components…brakes, crankset w/ drilled chainrings, derailleurs, small flange hubs, freewheel, bottom bracket, headset, pedals w/ christophe clips & alfredo binda natural tan straps…
    …gold anodized fiammes hoops…

    …all passionately worked & hand brazed in the shop of ernesto colnago, perhaps under the actual torch of ugo de rosa himself with full awareness that this machine would carry the most dominant rider of the era, if not all time to victory after commanding victory…

    …i can almost hear the telephone conversation floating in the ether…

    “si, si, tullio, grazie, grazie…si, we received merckx’s gruppos yesterday…ah, tullio, they’re lovely, bello, bello…nice extra work…ah, si, soon…ugo, he’s finishing up several frames today…of course, si, molto speciale, luce, forte…as soon as the paint is cured, i will build eddy’s machines up myself…ah, si, it’s true, merckx, he is finicky but who could complain…i love building his bikes…you, me, we give him the best, tullio but the ‘belga’, he always gives us the same back…a true campione…

    …you know, patrono & i think this is something you will appreciate, but when christian raymond dubbed eddy “le cannibal” at last years midi libre, well that name has stuck…si, si, tulio…

    …huysmans, bruyere, his guys, his squadra, they laugh & joke w/ him about it but in “le peleton”, no, no joking…it is now spoken with great deference…can you imagine, patrono, “il cannibale, le cannibal”…incredibile !!!…

    …si, tullio, perhaps when we build his bike for the hour record this fall, i should paint that on his frame, eh ???…il cannibale”…

    …patrono, forgive me but i must get back to matters at hand…si, si, me also…ancora una volta, il mio ringraziamento…ciao, amico”…

    …anyway, kilgore…like i say…without a lot of thought, ya, i’d get wood from one a’ those…

  104. …& who can complain when the voices in ones head are simply classic italians speaking of the best bikes & riders in the world…

  105. “So, DC’ers, what bikes give you the wood?”

    You old timers can roll on and on about things I don’t understand.

    What I do understand is my Surly has shipped and it’ll be here Saturday.

    I’m like a kid on Christmas Eve.

  106. CSR…good for you man, a new bike is so exciting.

    And, yes, us old timers will roll on…hopefully someday you will understand.
    Maybe you’ll run into one of us someday at the local skatepark/dirtjumps/criterium/24 hr race/etc. and we can help you understand :)

    This post is for Ned, Jens, Lance, Weinsy, Jacque Phelan, Paul Thomasberg, Brian Lopes, Eric Carter, Wade Simmons, Jeanne Longo…etc


  107. …csr…enjoy that bike, you surly bastard…

    …& to be an “old timer” with the ability to roll on & on is what’s all about, when all is said & done…

    …hottest day of our summer out here & i’m gonna do just that…roll on down the road & enjoy even the discomfort…

    …kilgore…jacque p lives two blocks from me…& while ned n’ wiensy aren’t my “hangin’ around” pals, they’re both friends…guess i’m lucky that way, being an “old timer”…

  108. …ohhh, btw…

    …my definition of a an old time “real” cyclist ???…

    …given the choice due to time constraints between shaving one’s face & one’s legs, the real cyclist will always choose “the legs”…

    …today, i’ll be the grizzly looking one out there w/ the smooth shaved legs…

  109. BGW…is that what Jacque would choose…?

    Yeah, it’s 108 degrees here at 40 deg N, 122deg W.

    but it’s a dry heat.

    hee hee

  110. …okay, okay…point taken…

    …jacque is that rare authentic cycling bird who would not only not (double negative) shave her legs, she might even rub mud on them before turning the pedals…

    …108*…jeezus, that is sick…

  111. BGW & KT, along the same line as BGW’s awesome bike description was this Galmozzi of a new 1978 vintage as seen through the eyes of me on my paper route at the local bike shop for $650. By the time I saved enough money for that first good racing bike in 1980…it had turned into a used Albert Eisentraut, but I can still picture that Galmozzi.

  112. That Galmozzi is lovely; great color and stunning cock on the headtube.
    Some years back I was in an anthro class at my local JC and the teacher’s name was Eisentraut. I asked her on the first day if she was related to the frame builder…her jaw dropped…”that’s my dad, she said”.
    Small world.

    Come on peeps…send us some pretty bike pics.

    We fiend!

  113. KT, Small world indeed. I gave that Eisentraut to my brother in 1982 for his first racing bike. He had it striped and repainted. Once striped, the framebuilder that painted it said that the three main tubes were different brands of tubing…Reynolds, Vitus and Columbus. That’s either super custom or super scrappy.

  114. …wow…haven’t seen a galmozzi in years but i’d suggest that any eisentraut at any time is a find…

    …there is a litany of sf bay area frame builders who learned or perfected their art & craft at the frame table of albert eisentraut…

    …& hellbelly…i’m pretty comfortable in suggesting that frame was designed utilizing the best characteristics of each brand of tubing specifically for it’s particular purpose…

    …of course albert might laugh & tell me “no, i was prob’ly just running low on tubing that month & thus i was just using up whatever i had left”, but somehow i don’t really think that’s true…

    …very definitive human being, albert & a genuinely nice guy…

  115. …by the way, senor trout…several hours out on the road today @ 98 to 105 degrees…yep…coldest summer in 30 years out here but today, well not so much…

    …drank more & sprayed myself with more water than i’ve done in years, which also meant i hadda stop a few times to fill those bottles but it was good to be out riding…

    …right now, i’m toasted as a mofo…no complaints…

  116. Yeah, BGW and other Hades dwellers…I figured out years ago that it’s a hot ride when yer breath yer exhaling feels cool on yer face….and it’s 98.6 degrees. I’ve found that I can’t tell my breath is cooler ’til it’s bout 102 degrees.
    And then there’s the cicadas and turkey vultures.

    Gets lonely out there.
    ‘Course the first Great White you crack open upon getting done with the ride tastes better than the south end of a north bound Salma Hayek…..

  117. …kgt…i had to literally douse my bibs several times over just for the cooling effect of wet lycra & even that hot breeze…

    …supposed to drop over the next coupla days but who can complain after all the cool summer fog we’ve had out here..

    …just wonderin’…you got a line on some salma hayek (either end) i can buy in on ???…

  118. I think we should see how long we can keep this going without any reference to whatever the post was originally about…

    What was your first mountain bike? Mine was a Haro Intense with LX (1989?). Stuffed it into a curb one night and killed the fork. Put a Koski fork on it, which at the time they sold as unpainted.

  119. SR Explorer…1986.
    It was 2 sizes too small, and I worked all summer sandblasting redwood in 100+ degree heat for $2 an hour to get it. Every bike since then has been a dream.

    First full suspension: GT Rts 1. POS, but it was sexy.

    I like a forum where we talk about bikes and beer. Seems appropriate on this site.

  120. After the Haro, I had a Mongoose aluminum with that weird triangular top tube. Full first gen XTR, with the RS Mag 21.

    First FS was the Mongoose/AMP with the double downtubes and that funky AMP fork. Blew the stock dampers on a regular basis. It got so bad I had to have 3 sets for the fork. One on, One in transit, and one getting repaired. If I wasn’t sponsored by them, that fork would have made a quick exit to the trash heap.

  121. First bike: Specialized Hard Rock I got second-hand growing up in DGO. I rode it the rest of the way into the ground.

    Fanboy moment: first time I rode clipless pedals, I fell over on the trail. Who came up and spent 20 minutes helping me extract my shoe and tighten my cleat?
    Ned Overend.
    Rode high as a kite for the rest of the day.

    First suspension bike: SC Blur. Sold it after 1 season. Hated it. Got a Kona Explosif and haven’t looked back.

  122. 1st bike: 1988 Schwinn Impact…Suntour below-the-bar shifters…full-rigid chromoly steel. Had it powdercoated neon green before I took it to college for some damn reason. Then I went to a Scorpio aluminum frame with a Rock Shox Mag 21, followed by a Kona Kilauea, which I still have as a full-rigid (nice circle of life, eh?) 42 x 16 singlespeed.

    jefe – I always loved that Mongoose/AMP.

  123. A real POS Zebrakenko 1981? Must have weighed 45 lbs! 2nd mountain bike – Nishiki Colorado 1986? Mountain bikes were a novelty in Wisconsin at that time because everyone that was racing rode cyclocross bikes.

  124. sfb, I really liked the frame. It rode really nice. Some people thought it was flexy, but I didn’t notice it too much. Once I got one of the Rissie air (maybe it was a Stratos…I actually ended up having three generations of those frames. B2, B3, and B4) air shock on it, all I had to do was change the bushings out once a year. The fork was a deathtrap. Aside from the dampers blowing continually, it had some weird handling quirks because of the path the wheel took. The trail changed depending on where it was in the travel. I think I was not asked back on the regional team because of a public rant I had about the fork…

  125. First MTB; 1989 Rocky Mountain Fusion. It’s been courier’d, raced, toured over the Rockies and the Alps, and it’s still going. albeit it’s relegated to singlespeed go-to-tavern bike.

    I see alot of references to equipment I’ve had. The RS Mag21 with the seven dial settings for stiction from ‘too much stiction’, to ‘virtual stiction lockout’ and all the way to ‘is this thing broken?’

    That bike was my “everything” ride until it was replaced with a Mantis Profloater with an AMP F3 mid nineties. Still have the Mantis & AMP but it hangs on a wall with a damaged dropout from a stick getting caught in the derailleur. (broken hearted. big fan of replaceable hangers now) Anybody got a Mantis swingarm hangin’ around?

    Sommerfilesby, where those the suntour shifters shaped like a ‘Y’? I’ve got a set of those but have never used them. Wondered if they were any good..

  126. …this post was originally about ‘a sign’

    …i’d suggest that the evolution of that original intent which was modified by the author himself, the acceptance or lack thereof relating to the style the author chose to utilize as reviewed through the compilation of comments & then the ultimate direction taken due to those comments is a clear sign for anyone w/ their nose to the ground…

    …nothing has been lost…it’s still about ‘a sign’

    …just sayin’…

    …@dirty…because you were polite enough to say please, i’ll try to maintain the teetery balance by simply suggesting that you not lose a lotta sleep over my use of the ellipti…had my computer modified, whereas when you hit your “period” key, you get a ‘period’ but when i hit mine, i get an ellipsis…


  127. Kark – I don’t remember what they looked like…only that they came out right before Shimano came up with Rapidfire. Diff was SunTour shifted only with the thumb, Shimano used the finger/thumb combo. I know they worked well until one day I just smashed the shifter pod for the front derailleur with my knee. From then on, I was running a 1 x 7. :)

  128. …eric, donnie & dave…the koski brothers…

    …the koski family have a well respected cycling legacy here in marin that should never be forgotten…the family, mom n’ dad owned the “cove bicycle shop” which had the brothers all involved w/ bikes as kids so it was a natural evolution into the early mtb biz for the guys…

    …eric rode road bikes w/ us back in the early ’70’s & attended the original ‘velo club tamalpais’ meetings although i’m not sure if he was ever officially a member…

    …somewhere about ’78, eric & donny designed the original ‘trailmaster bike’ of which prob’ly under 40 were ever built…had they found a more reliable & prolific frame builder, the ‘koski’ name might have been, along with their bank accounts, much bigger…
    …that koski fork you mentioned, el jefe, came out around ’85-ish…

    …anyway…apropos of early mtb history…

  129. That ellipses shit is seriously annoying to anyone who actually reads things with any regularity. Ellipses have their place in our grammar, but that place is not a replacement for capital letters and periods. It’s just laziness and it is causing your writing to be less read in a similar way as LJ’s tone causes his writing to be less read.

    I do miss that Colnago Super I bought in 1982. 64 cm, all campy record, Regina 5 speed freewheel, 14×21.


  130. First bike is tough. I was a bike maniac as a kid but I was born a “poor black child” so all my earliest bikes were what ever we built up ourselves.

    Fast forward 35+ years and my first was a Cannondale M400.

    My late bro gave it to me in exchange for painting his bathroom. Perfect excuse for him to go out and buy a new ride. And for us to ride together.

    We spent the next 2 years riding around this local lake.

    Still go there now and then to bring those last days back.

    This post started bad and ended good. Funny how that works.

  131. Sorry guys, I’ll take some of the blame for hijacking the thread with my Merckx vs. Mt. Goat poll. I grew weary of the vitriol so I threw a sabot into the works.

    It went well. Hee Hee.


  132. KgT. ‘credit’ not ‘blame’. The distraction was like a gust of clean fresh air in a smoke choked basement booze can.

  133. Joe-
    Hells yeah, Wal-mart counts. They
    are shitty bikes, but they are frequently all that is available to many young’uns. If you get the fever while owning one of those, you really got the fever.
    Plus, they make us bike mechanics rich.

  134. First bike? That was some junkyard 20″ Schwinn with a springer fork. First new bike was a Huffy BMX. I wanted a Mongoose, but my grandparents bought it for me and I rode the shit out of it. First bike I bought myself was a Kuwahara 20″ that I saved up for. Raced a couple of years of BMX on that. The whole jumping thing kept me from going very far in BMX.

  135. …sheesh…i can laugh about it when i’m awake but dreaming about riding my first mtb has me waking up in a cold sweat…

    …i’ve mentioned this before but g-fish & his partner seekay were given one of these: that’s right, a “murray baja”…now compared with what they were building at the time, this bike was a total joke…
    …what a’ ya do with a good joke ???…that’s right, share it with a friend & i was that friend…

    …to quote el jefe talking about his ‘huffy bmx’, “i rode the shit out of it”…if you had one of the original “mountainbikes” you had a damn good chance of being outridden both uphill & down by the guy on the “baja”…

    …i couldn’t afford anything more so my ego made sure ya knew one thing, “it’s not about the bike”

    …but hey, ya gotta start somewhere…

  136. hello my little jar… i want your lid to remain on. be a good little jarhead. eschew you.

  137. Hey, LittleJars’ post was meritorious from any angle. We all want change for our fellow riders sake. BUT, when cyclists are spitting bytes at each other in a rage on this site I get confused and a little bummed. Spirited discourse is one thing, but we must unite against the evil dinosaur suckers surrounding us.

    Fuck you ignorant hateful drivers. We cyclists are your neighbors, teachers, doctors, lovers, and grocers.

    See us, know us. We won’t give up!