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Velominatus: Optimiste

Order: Guest Contributor

Location: Typically the canyon roads of Utah

Social: Website /

Dreaming of Rule #9 rides.

@Optimiste's activity:

I love wine. I mean, I like beer and scotch and can’t resist ordering a Vesper whenever I pretend to be a gentleman spy, but I love wine. As a semi-professional drinker, the biggest worry I have is that should my as-yet undiagnosed problem with alcohol become a diagnosed problem with alcohol, I’d have to stop drinking wine. A full...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @RobSandy This!  I had a similar object lesson just days after purchasing my first road bike at age 13.  While pushing the limits around a corner, I felt the bike starting to slide out from underneath me.  More concerned about the bike than myself, I ke… »

I’ve lost a lot of things that were, at some point or another, dear to me. At times, I’ve even cast them away deliberately, either because of a nurtured indifference or an irrational or impulsive dislike. Regret is an easy emotion to find in reflection, it lays right at the surface and provides us with a quick answer without requiring...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @unversio Now that’s how to end a season.  Good on ya. »

Happy living in our stressful lives is all about organization. For instance, I like to sort the tasks first by priority and then group tasks of equal priority into buckets of minor priorities. Software developers creatively call this approach to organization a “bucket sort”. This helps break down what appears to be an insurmountable me...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. I love it when the day’s ride coincides with a great article.  50km commute home, 10°C, unrelenting headwind and rain the last 10km. Not exactly a #9 ride, but a reminder the weather is turning here in the northern hemi. Between the ride, Frank’s musings… »

The Bike. It is the central tool in pursuit of our craft. A Velominatus meticulously maintains their bicycles and adorns them with the essential, yet minimal, accoutrement. The Rules specify the principles of good taste in configuration and setup of our machines, but within those principles lies almost infinite room for personal taste.It seems in s...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @ChrissyOne +1 indeed.  I’ve always been a sucker for lugged frames and chrome chain stays.  Very nice. »

Cycling is a sport steeped in the tradition of style. There’s no denying it. From the days of miners and farmers escaping the hardships of a life spent toiling in harsh and filthy conditions either under or above ground, through Coppi and his Cosa Nostra-esque garb and swagger, Merckx and De Vlaeminck’s 70s sideburns, to Cipo and his...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. I like geography quizzes!  And David Millar. »

The modern day Pro cyclist has many disadvantages stacked against them by comparison to their forefathers. They have to ride plastic bikes with little or no distinguishing character or discernible caché; they must willingly or perhaps unwittingly subject their body to an array of questionable “training techniques”; and they have to sp...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @Ccos Spot on about the functional downside of black kit.  Last year, we had all black too which looked Fantastic off the bike, and received approving comments on a regular basis.  But they got lost in a sea of black at every race.  This year we added … »

Brett’s recent post about Jensie brings up the dilemma of professional cycling for me. I admire many of cycling’s famous riders yet I don’t admire cheaters. Luckily for me I can fervently embrace opposable ideas within my consciousness and sleep well at night. Which also means I would have been one of those cheaters. I also see the tangle...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @Dino If you haven’t read Inga’s full interview linked in this article, it’s worth doing.  It was not a forced confession and not quite a tell-all.  Discretion was taken where needed, as noted by the editor.  What I took from it was a real description of … »

The modern day Pro cyclist has many disadvantages stacked against them by comparison to their forefathers. They have to ride plastic bikes with little or no distinguishing character or discernible caché; they must willingly or perhaps unwittingly subject their body to an array of questionable “training techniques”; and they have to sp...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @Bespoke It seems much of the discussion has been around the merits of the kits themselves, as opposed to a non-pro actually wearing them.  However, as the rule’s description indicates, wearing pro team kit is questionable but not a contravention of the… »

  2. @Teocalli That’s how a kit is done. In the spirit of Sir Mix-a-Lot:  “I like old kits and I cannot lie.  Velominati can’t deny. . .” »

I hesitate to file this in the Guest Article category. It would be better filed under fellow un-rewarded pirate cycling-site writer, if we had such a file. @winnipegcyclechick does all of her site’s writing, her graphics are usually hers and much too funny. Frankly, she makes me sick. And, AND, she can make the jokes we can’t make lest...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @il ciclista medio That lead photo is the boner joke. Possible punchlines include: Very carefully I said “Bend, Oregon” not “bent organ” Several racers reported frostbite in their extremities If your ‘cross race lasts longer than 4 hours, consult a p… »

  2. Andrea, Thanks for sparking a multitude of memories from my time as one of the stupid boys.  “. . .those halcyon days of summer radness.”  Exactly.  Although I’m pretty sure you were/are much cooler than me. The BMX photo sums up just about every summer … »

We are the Keepers of the Cog. In so being, we also maintain the sacred text wherein lie the simple truths of cycling etiquette known as The Rules. It is in our trust to maintain and endorse this list.The Rules lie at the beginning of The Path to La Vie Velominatus, not at the end; learning to balance them against one another and to welcome them...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @http://Almosaferondotcom Of course it’s illogical.  It’s a way of life.  (I always like it when a spam post makes an relevant comment) »

  2. @sthilzy Fantastic. In taking up his new mantle, The Prophet was clearly bestowing his blessing upon the crowds as he passed through with his entourage. »

Cyclists love socks. I know I do. I’d make a point of collecting as many pairs as I could from every race, event, shop or rep that I ever happened upon. Some were so good that I still have them, others, well, let’s just say they were “re-homed” long before they got the chance to retire gracefully after years of loyal service...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @Rob Schweddy Balls.  Hehe. »

Jens Voigt is set to retire as we speak, having one final crack at a long break in some race in the Cycling backwater of the USA. Is it fair or fitting that he should go out like this, slipping out the back door with little fanfare, while others have been doing a farewell tour of all the big races, replete with fancy commemorative shoes and a son...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. All well said.  It seems I rely heavily on the delusion of my own abilities and those of my heroes.  When the reality of either sets in, I sigh heavily in resignation – as now.  Then I plan my next big ride and watch a race filled with impossible feats fo… »

The future is dark, which is the best thing the future can be, I think.- Virginia WoolfOur actions lie on the horizon of the present, in that swirling cloud where fantasy turns into reality. To plan is to cast a shadow into the future, to attempt to lay shape to the unknown. As the present merges with the future, reality will try our plans on for s...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @Nate Wait…which one is the Dark Lord?  I’m guessing Frank is the one in the black helmet. Either way, this article is just the kind of Jedi mind trick which keeps me riding farther and further than any reasonable person would ever go. »

I have met @chris on the original Keepers Tour. He seemed like a reasonable person at the time. Then again, @rob passes himself off  as a rational person yet he signed up for the Too Much on 100 ride and completed it. People sign up for these crazy rides because it forces them to get in the best shape possible. It makes these long rides more enjoy...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. Gianni, What’s the source of the artwork?  That is gloriously horrific. »

  2. “It seemed like a good idea at the time.”  Story of my life.  Chris, that looks like a great ride and certainly a great cause.  I look forward to your post-ride report. »

July 13 2014 marked the 35th anniversary of the seminal ‘cycling film’ Breaking Away. 35 years. Nothing stays popular for that long, right? Things get dated, lose their edge (if there was edge in the first place) and eventually become irrelevant (I’m looking at you, Rolling Stones). Yes, even legends get stale if left out too lon...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @DavidI Spot on about the movie themes.  It was jr. high for me, when my last failed attempt at organized sports and the influence of “Breaking Away” and LeMan coincided. »

  2. That movie and this community encapsulate everything I love about cycling. @brett, the accompanying drawings are great.  I hadn’t seen those before. »

Brett’s fine Nick Cave article got me thinking about music and cycling. We spend lots of time alone on our bikes. The bike is on autopilot, it stays upright from second to second, freeing up our brains to consider anything or nothing. Music might be the only riding companion we have but it has to be the right music. Being as Pro as possible is...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @unversio Oh yes. »

The Ride. It is the cathedral of our sport, where we worship at the altar of the Man with the Hammer. It is the end to our means. Indeed, The Bike may be the central tool to our sport, but to turn the pedals is to experience the sensation of freedom, of flight. It is all for The Ride.The world is overflowing with small, twisty roads that capture ou...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. Live webcast of Tour of Utah: tourtracker.tourofutah.com. Don’t know if there are any geo restrictions.  Stage 2 of 7 right now.  And of course, Jens is in the break! »

Brett’s fine Nick Cave article got me thinking about music and cycling. We spend lots of time alone on our bikes. The bike is on autopilot, it stays upright from second to second, freeing up our brains to consider anything or nothing. Music might be the only riding companion we have but it has to be the right music. Being as Pro as possible is...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @Mikael Liddy That was incredible. Just the nudge I needed today. »

  2. A-Merckx! I don’t feel connected to the bike/road/environs/myself if I have buds in the ears, so strategically loading the brain buffers to replay the right music during the ride is very useful.  For most rides I’m able to roll out from my doorstep, so I … »

The Bike. It is the central tool in pursuit of our craft. A Velominatus meticulously maintains their bicycles and adorns them with the essential, yet minimal, accoutrement. The Rules specify the principles of good taste in configuration and setup of our machines, but within those principles lies almost infinite room for personal taste.It seems in s...

@Optimiste's posts:

  1. @plynie Liking the V decals. »

  • Wilkins is right about his role in his bike/car incidents. There’s 2 sides to the equation, always. As cyclists,...

  • One word, old mate … abridge!

    Fuck me that’s a long article. I really should read one someday around here.

  • @DeKerr

    Indeed, great story. What year was it published? I could not find the date. Mentions Pharmstrong’s...

  • @Ron

    YES! Ron, we have a date with DESTINY!!! Or a ride, not sure which? Either way, some of us are going to do...

  • @kixsand best of luck. Have fun and ask lots of questions!

  • Holy fuck! Anyone have any hot deals on GoPros and helmet mounts?

    Or maybe small firearms and bibshort holsters?

  • @PeakInTwoYears hear, hear. I to am fortunate to ride in friendlier climes

  • One word, old mate…………camera.

  • Mindfulness–and let’s just pass right over the idea of compassion for the moment–isn’t easy when it’s hard. When...

  • Good survival training and looking inward is best.

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