Tag Archives: cycling

Cycling the food chain

OK so a minor rant today about cycling etiquette.  I ride multiple bikes and pedal as much as a suburban work-a-day stiff kind find the time to (I’m also quite lazy).  I would consider myself a cyclist foremost as the riding and thoughts of cycling comprise 90% of my non-family thoughts.  If I had to narrow what kind of cyclist, no real reason except to banter on the interweb, I would say I’m a mountain biker closely followed by a bicycle commuter.  Though I ride a bicycle during a commuting or getting somewhere circumstance more than I ride the MTB, I like the mountain cycling better than pedaling to work in 10 degree temps.  In my opinion, mountain bike enthusiasts are the top of the cycling food chain as far as humans who pedal bikes go.  We are friendly, we say hello on trail, most of us are not assholes who ride wet trails and don’t yield to other trail users and a we work on the trails we ride.  When is the last time you saw a roadie in tight pants and an orange vest doing road work?  Any way I digress.  Maybe it’s the nature that should chill everyone out and make people have fun at what they’re doing or it’s just the hi-low tech (doesn’t matter) love of the cycle.

The next on the cycling food chain I used to think was the bicycle commuter.  I could smile at cars stuck in traffic with my self-assuring glare that I’m better than them because I caused zero emissions on the way to the office and I’m in a hell of a lot better mood than them.  But now, oh now, I commute along a rather traveled stretch of bike lane everyday in Denver.  20th street runs from west to east and is safer than some of the other streets that go through as far as it does.  I feel we are unique as commuters and we should share a certain camaraderie amongst our superiority complexes, but my fellow commuters are assholes.  Or as preoccupied as a 17 year old texting the passenger in her car as she runs over old ladies in cross-walks.  I’m all for the zen and solitude of a nice bicycle ride but what the fuck?  Say hello!! Be Polite!  Any way, again I digress, I can rest assured that we are still better, even though impolite, than people who drive cars as a lifestyle choice.   Any ways, there are the hipster dufus guys in tight jeans and fixed gear bikes, nothing to complain about there, natural selection will take care of that.   Roadies would come next, they are the epitome of the superiority complex.  They are fast, or at least look that way, and they are building lean muscle and have no time for the plebeians.  What ever, they suck, don’t say hi when you pass them going up big hills.

Wait I think I’m rambling now.  I meant to make some point about how bicycle commuters are higher on the food chain than the recumbant riders and the trials riders.  We were way higher on the chain than the unicyclists.  Even higer than the recumbant unicyclists who ride trials, the are the dregs of cycling.  No one really takes us seriously.  We are the hood-ornaments of the cycling world, the yellow jacket, peg panted army that will always be made fun of by the “serious” cyclist.  OK, still rambling (I’m Old and Bitter) anyways, fumbling through the interweb this evening after work, a way better blog than mine posted a video of this amazing kid riding street/trials and us poor commuters dropped under the trials guys in the food chain.

It’s five and a half minutes of your life that will not be wasted…
Fruita Fat Tire Festival is this week, we’re leaving on Thursday AM and we’ll rock and drink through Sunday morning/afternoon. If you’re going and unfortunate enough to read this blog, leave a comment and we’ll see you there.  I’ll have the low-down, photos, and random rants about them dang kids with their streamers and fancy bikes.  All for now.

April in Colorado…

Like most cyclists and Coloradans April is a time to come out of our shells and get back on the bikes/trails/whatever outside and get some fresh air.  This winter has been different, we’ve been riding every day/week/month as the weather has provided us way more singletrack than should be allowed for a winter in Colorado.  Today is April first, we’ll celebrate our next snow storm in a string of great snow storms.  It’s two so far this week with a good one scheduled for the weekend.  Can’t really ride the trails so let’s trash the roads, yeah whatever.   We’ll ride our bikes no matter what, we keep 5-6 bikes a person for a reason.  Today’s first picture from the Canon G10 is the Apre-Commute today during the Thunder-Snow.  Snow is cool when it’s thundering (like the Pacific Northwest) but the lightening was a bit scary as it seemed to be hitting quite close.

The second topic of the day, as I’m not particularly pissed about anything now, is beer.  America has undoubtedly the best beer in the world.  The Germans can argue (why?), the Belgians can compare (they make some great stuff too), the English (they’re good but too narrow in the taste spectrum) and the rest of the world, eh, maybe some good ones but who has time when we rule.  Today’s story comes from Russian River Brewing in Sonoma California.  It’s a new to me brew called Pliny the Elder.  Fantastic, over-hopped, well malted beverage comining in at a daily drinking weight of 8.0 ABV.

Pliny the Elder was a Roman naturalist, scholar, historian, traveler,
officer, and writer. Although not considered his most important work,
Pliny and his contemporaries created the botanical name for hops,
“Lupus salictarius”, meaning wolf among scrubs.” Hops at that time grew
wild among willows, much like a wolf in the forest. Later the current
botanical name, Humulus lupulus, was adopted. Pliny died in 79 AD while
observing the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. He was immortalized by his
nephew, Pliny the Younger, who continued his uncle’s legacy by
documenting much of what he observed during the eruption of Mount
Vesuvius. (taken from Russian River’s website)

Needless to say it’s a fantastic beer and everyone should drink 4 of them.  A photo for proof.

Anyway that’s it for today.  This weekend will be with out cycling so maybe I’ll photo around the snowy neighborhood again and figure out how to use my Nikon again.

Winter Bike

I have been a cycling commuter for my entire professional career as a data monkey.  I never make much of a fuss about it but today was a particularly snowy day and I just got a new 60mm 2.8 Micro Nikkor lens to take photos with.  So here are the first shots from the new glass.

Here is a close up of the front brake with all of it’s snowy glory.  For ghetto brakes these things really hold up.  I have about 2-3k miles on this bike so far with it’s original brake pads and they still work!

This picture is the complete bike, the Cayne Uno, I changed the bars, stem and brake levers but other than that it’s stock and bullit proof.

More macro shots for the sake of macro photography, I must say that the 60mm 2.8 lens is as crisp a lens as i’ve ever used.  I had the priveldge of using a 70-200 VR from Nikon and I think this one is sharper.  But what do I know, most of my photos are poorly composed and out of focus anyway.  Ha ha!

That is all for today, i’ll have some more soon and possibly it might be more interesting next time!

Portraits of Fast Men…Tour De France 2008

Saturday July 26th my tour group along with our guide Darren and myself spent the day watching the Tour de France time trial in Saint Amand Montrond France.

Shooting fast moving sporting events has always eluded me and my photography skills. The time trial is an excellent chance to photograph these elite athletes one at a time. The speed is higher but with the riders singled out they provide excellent portrait opportunities.

All shots are with my beloved Nikon D70 and Nikon 80-200 ED 2.8 lens at various manual and automatic settings.

Below are a few of the riders and what I beleive to be fairly good photos of them…

One of the most aggressive and prolific riders of the tour. Jens Voigt

Tour de France Stage 20 Time Trial Saint Amand Montrond France

Bernard Kohl beginning his sprint from the last corner of the course.

Tour de France Stage 20 Time Trial Saint Amand Montrond France

Either Andy Schleck catching Kim Kirchen(sp?) or vice versa???

Tour de France Stage 20 Time Trial Saint Amand Montrond France

Carlos Sastre in his yellow jersey keeping ride!

Tour de France Stage 20 Time Trial Saint Amand Montrond France

The man, the myth and the legend…Eric Zabel

Tour de France Stage 20 Time Trial Saint Amand Montrond France

George Hincapie looking at the camera during his ride.

Tour de France Stage 20 Time Trial Saint Amand Montrond France

Top American GC hope Christian Vande Velde smiling for his portrait in the final straight.

Tour de France Stage 20 Time Trial Saint Amand Montrond France

All for now, I’ll be posting a few pictures from Paris in the next few days but I still have some interesting portraits of these amazing cyclists in my gallery

First Post…

Welcome to the first post of Xvelo Design…

This is a site for my narcissistic side to feel published and like I’m a contributor to the waste and slaughter of trillions of zeros and ones per day.

I will post photos from my world along with my soapbox topics of the day, so in short we’ll talk about photography, see my gallery, I will update that way more than I work on this but it’s good to have hobbies, right?

Anyway enjoy, for nobody that’s watching, I’ll be going to France next week to join my family and for an excellent summer of cycling and eating.

 Have a nice day!

 Some Photos to get you through:

Seeing if it works

These photos are from a shoot we did at a clients of Rocky Mountain Remodeling Resources

Kitchen View 2