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Velominatus: therealpeel

Order: Level 1 Velominatus

Location: Philly

a bike commuting social working weekend warrior or at least I was. Now I am recovering from a stupid accident and waiting for the budget to align for replacement parts. I have to make do with mtn biking but it just doesn't feed my soul in the same way...

@therealpeel's activity:

@Blackpooltower is obviously spending all his n+1 money on new cycling books, or he works in the little seen cycling-specific bookshop. Either way, he is nice enough to catch us all up on what is vvorthy. The lead image alone is enough, it’s fantastic. It’s worthy of its own article or, even better, a movie. It is not too late for hint...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @SamFromTex Much has been written about the man, but little as to his identity as a cyclist. I always assumed he was one of us, in a sense, for what other reason works he be out lurking on the road? »

There are certain bicycle tools that once owned, signify much more than just ownership. For me, it was this Park clamp. No one starts out with a proper bike stand. For any cyclist, I see the early years of working on the bike as it leans up against the end of the bed. I also see no live-in girlfriend or second room to do this in. This era includes...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. Nicely done. I have a tripod to peak Work stand… It would not have been my first or tenth choice, but it was a gift from family so it works well enough that I can’t justify a new one… »

White is a troublesome color; hard to keep clean. I have a white dress shirt that I never wear because even if I manage not to spill on the front of it, the cuffs and collar will look crap by the end of the day regardless. I mean, I can keep from eating something all day, but I can’t keep from drinking coffee or wine, and before very long som...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @frank For the record, the child protection authorities will not care that you left your kids behind on the first hill of your ‘family ride’ because you had good legs… »

Waiting has never been my strong point. I’m anxious, but don’t really suffer from anxiety. Good things come to those who wait isn’t at the top of my list of proverbs to live by. Do What Thou Wilt always has been, though; kind of a Just Do It for early 20th century Satanists, and me.It was with this mantra in the back of my mind th...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. Is there ever really ‘the one bike’?  I think not. There will always be something more to capture the mind. That said… Nice choice! »

Ever heard of Bert Oosterbosch? No, neither had I until I came across this excellent (and comprehensive) account from @ErikdR. A story of triumph and tragedy if ever there was one, everything you need to know about the Dutchman’s short career and ultimately, life, is laid out here. Give yourself some weekend reading time and enjoy. Yours in...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. Nice piece of history. Always impressed with the cycling lore posted here. I certainly like the pics of pre helmet races, the Pro’s seem more distinctive and approachable. »

Going fast and looking good while doing it is our Velominati creed. Riding on the tops is the domaine of going uphill, where braking and aerodynamics are unimportant. In most other situations that position is too slow. The pros are usually flattened down in the drops or flattened down on the brake hoods. When us non-pros are not climbing, riding on...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. No matter where I put my hands I don’t think I will ever approach looking pro… Just not fast enough… And too big. »

We just finished a thorough examination of the Cyclist’s marquee accoutrement, the Cycling Cap. Today’s lesson is about the Cycling Cap’s red-headed step brother, the Winter Cycling Cap.This is a toque born of necessity; the thin cotton cap is nowhere near warm enough for the demands of the Flemish winter training season. Form s...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @Ron Do they source their materials from local road kill? »

One of the things that strikes me most about the English is they don’t appear to have developed any sort of “inner dialog”. It seems anything that passes through the brain is parlayed directly to the tongue; if the thought being expressed is an insult to you, it will generally include a query for confirmation: “You’r...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @Buck Rogers The all encompassing weight of tradition?  As a first thought that sounded right, but as my internal monolog progressed I realized for the Pro’s (and more importantly) their sponsors nothing is sacred except winning. So. Now I am flummoxed… »

It doesn’t take a genius to see what’s going on here. Rule #5, Rule #9, Rule #10; every rider in this frame Looks Fantastic (most other Rules). The riders are in short sleeves and shorts while the public apparently has scavenged materials from rubbish bins and the local grain elevator in a very visually unpleasant effort to keep war...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @Buck Rogers Had never really noticed how well the bandana matched the rest of his kit. Impressive and so much better than the ubiquitous red bandana I see too often. I appreciate the idea of a racer creating a persona while on the bike…as has bee… »

Many of us cyclist don’t go out on the bike for under an hour, at a minimum. What’s the point? It is barely a ride if it is not at least two hours on the bike. I need half an hour to convince myself maybe I do feel OK. After an hour, the first queries can go down to the engine room, is everything good down there? Some people feel better...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. Man, I gotta ride more. The days with the longer rides are more magical (for me that means anything more than 1.5hrs), but like others I believe any time in the saddle is good time. You who ride massive hours… How do you do this? Laid-off? Kids in cages… »

Whenever you see one of those yellow cars or motorcycles laden with spare wheels and manned by efficiently deliberate young professionals with no allegiance or favour to any one rider, take a moment to reflect on the oft-overlooked pioneer of the neutral service as we know it today, M. Jacques Mavic.Usually only sighted once a year in July, Jacq...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. Feeling inadequate for my lack of facial hair, but angry because that’s my uncle you all are making fun of in this AOP. Shame. »

I’m not saying I’m Batman; if I was Batman it would be a foolish thing to admit to and if I wasn’t Batman it would be a foolish thing to claim to be. What is true, however, is that Batman is pretty cool and it would probably be pretty cool to be a cool dude like Batman. It bears mentioning, however, that I have never been see...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @frank The results are never prettu when nerds collide. »

I have a huge capacity for watching bike racing on TV. I’ll watch hours of it even when nothing is really happening. I’m certainly not bragging. So I’m quite certain I could sit in the cramped, possibly smokey, noisy, Gent velodrome and watch an evening of six-day racing. I bet the ratio of men to women (who actually want to be th...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @Ron American sports are losing their appeal to me, not completely, but I don’t make an effort to watch unless it’s the home town team. Even then a bike ride or family time will win.  Track racing and spectating bike events though… I find the time. »

“My dear, Find what you love and let it kill you. Let it drain you of your all. Let it cling onto your back and weigh you down into eventual nothingness. Let it kill you and let it devour your remains. For all things will kill you, both slowly and fastly, but it’s much better to be killed by a lover. ~ Falsely yours” ― Charles BukowskiIt&#...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @Chris To add to the train of quotes, from the movie “the grey”. Once more into the Fray/into the last good fight I’ll know/love and die on this day/live and die on this day »

  2. The constancy of being on the razor thin edge of life and death is useually at least partially in my conscious mind while I ride, unless I am on the MTB and then I just worry about broken bones.  I continue to ride  but still wrestle with the concept that… »

I’ve never been to Africa before, although I’m not sure Cape Town counts as “Africa”. One thing I noticed is that everyone here is very skinny. I also noticed that the meal proportions served at restaurants are very modest. That shows the difference between prevention and treatment when dealing with obesity; whereas in the U...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. The overwhelming presence of inexpensive (for a Westerner) quality wine in south Africa could make a person swear off beer.  It’s crazy. I craved a bike when I was there, but time and budget would not allow.  I also felt insecure about being able to stay … »

Sharing the road with cars is mostly a losing proposition. It’s hard to share when your vehicle weighs 8 kgs and the other guy’s is 800 kgs. If we have to share we have to let go and that is not easy, as @Kevin Wilkins explains. Yours in Cycling, Gianni Continue reading...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @Ken Ho I have thought about doing this… Just have a hard time with the cost. »

What does the layman observe when he sees a cyclist in the wild? While we do our utmost to Look Fantastic, in our own eyes and minds at least, outside observers may as well be witnessing little green aliens who’ve just stepped off their spacecraft and are heading to their very first fancy dress/drag party on this weird and wonderful planet...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @scaler911 This. And all of this is awesome. I try to look fantastic, but saw a picture of myself recently in kit and I cringed. This made me embarrassed because it was after a good ride. I vowed from that point to improve my look, but it’s not exactly … »

There is nothing more disappointing than discovering the truth behind a myth or spotting the mortal behind a legend. This is why I make a point never to do any research or in any other way attempt to validate my assumptions when evaluating a situation; mystery that feels like a fact and sounds like a fact is better than an actual fact. Tr...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. I am at the end of the comments and I have no idea what the original article was about. Legends of cycling? Or was it climbing? Were we discussing poetry or was it a review of wet weather gear? What happened? »

I’m not sure where this ride falls on the graph of fitness but down towards the bottom, somewhere.There can be a point in every rider’s season where each ride ends the same. FFS, I suck. The unabridged volume of self-loathing is reviewed, cogent chapters reread, aloud, in the bathroom. I’m Too Fat To Climb is a chapter I like to q...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @the-farmer Yes. Always wishing. @gianni Spot On. Especially remembering being a good cyclist. I think about that all too often. In months and years past feeling like I could fly (slowly), but now everything is struggle. My mantra is- Tomorrow I wil… »

To keep chickens is to walk a path towards introspection. From the songs they sing after laying an egg (which I assume is “chicken” for “I’m Every Woman“) to the sheer glee they show when they find a worm in the mud, chickens provide a perfect example of living life in and for the moment. The most interesting aspect o...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @Nate Ya, that’s me. I used to ride in the drops a lot more- on flat and windy rides, but now I ride with little wind and more frequent climbs and its just more comfortable on the hoods. But really I just need to HTFU. »

A great unknown awaits the young men, bound by a common entity of steel, flesh and passion rolled together. Do they contemplate the future, or are they so encapsulated in the here and now that anything beyond the finish line seems like it could only be for old people? Have they any inkling which path they will take, or be guided towards? Maybe...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @VeloVita I have never understood USA kit… It’s always hideous. »

 Rule #4 is clear but how do you explain to your five year old what a twatwaffle is? I was left trying to define twatwaffle to a room full of relatives, none five years old but a few close to ninety-five years old. Someone opened The Book of Rules and loudly read out Rule #4. Some hand waving and muttering about the Dutch deflected things, thankf...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. Very nice story. Thanks for sharing. I think it’s one of the great conundrums of the V-life. It is all about the bike, of course, but more than anything else the rider makes the bike. »

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...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. @ron well said. Thinking of balance in life I remind myself that balance is never static. We turn the pedals around to stay upright on impossibly narrow strips of rubber. We shift our weight forwards and back to compensate for changing terrain. What is no… »

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...

@therealpeel's posts:

  1. I used to consider a “good” mountain bike ride as one in which I didn’t crash. Maybe I need to rethink that. @ron what is a MUP? »