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Guest Anatomy of a Photo: Here We Rest

by / / 99 posts

photo by Camille McMillan

@steampunk dropped this beauty of a photo on us. Volumes being spoken here, none of which makes being a pro look so great. Thanks Steamy.

VLVV, Gianni

I’ve waxed lyrical on the darker side of le métier on these pages in the past—on the physical and psychological demands that pro riders endure. But this photograph requires even more of the cycling fan. Tan lines? Check. Eye wear? Well placed. These are pro, right?

But this kind of voyeurism almost inspires an awkward kind of guilt. Witness: the still-open door; the suitcase stand still leaning against the wall—suitcase dumped on the floor beside it; shoes (as beaten and worn down as the rider) askew in the general vicinity of the shoe mat. How do we process these? Dingy hotel. Emaciated rider. Sun-burned face. Chapped lips. Hunched shoulders. Heavy head. Distant eyes. Broken. Total, utter, complete fatigue. And tomorrow they expect panache. Again.

// Guest Article

  1. @DerHoggz

    The setting is exotic to me, so I respond like the bookish effete wanker that I am. But looking at those images I get a hit of my grandfather the ironworker’s shop, which was a magical place for a little kid.

  2. My god what our heros to them selves in the name sport. I don’t see anything pitiful in this image, I see a warrior. I know that sounds cheesy.

  3. @Steampunk

    @chipomarc

    Are you referring to the recent Canadian Cycling cover?

    I love the jersey. And note the bike comes from his father.

    @Xyverz

    My take was that this was the less glamorous side. Naturally the subject has shifted our focus to talk about doping, aftermath, etc., but I suspect you could superimpose most pros into this scene.

    @brian

    Welcome, mate.

    @scaler911

    Drew Bledsoe? Really??

    I loathe American Football now to be honest. His was just a name that came to mind when I was tapping out that post. I used to really love FB when I was a kid. Somehow it seemed better then. My grandfather was friends with Jim Plunkett both being Stanford Alumni.

  4. @scaler911

    I’m almost loath to admit that I have a degree from WSU, so the Drew Bledsoe comment piqued my curiosity.

  5. @DerHoggz

    There are life suspensions around – but they are for recidivists, eg. The Hard man from Marblehead. Not sure whether the Cobra has one too?

  6. For the love of God.  Let’s all please refrain from destroying Camille’s outstanding portrait by mangling it with “sepia” or a BW conversion.  If that’s how they wanted it, that’s how they would have made it.  Camillle’s photo, not ours.  Camille’s just letting us all appreciate it.

    It truly is a great portrait.  You guys should drop the name into Google and check out some of the other work.  Great stuff.  Also, Kristof Ramon & Emiliano Granado & Daniel Wakefield Pasley do excellent cycling documentary photography.

  7. @Rob 5 days? Man, the longest “stage” race I have done is 4 stages in three days. I secured a strong place in the bottom third and was completely sun-fucked after the last stage. I weakly rolIed into the front seat of the car for the 4 dried rive home and my VMH, who just rode the women’s race and had to be lumped in with the pros for numbers, turns to me in the passenger seat and says…

    “oh pumpkin, does your cunt hurt? Or do you have sand in your ovaries? Because I think I rode alot more kms than you did this weekend.”

  8. @Dan_R *4 hour drive home.  Damn autocorrect

  9. @DerHoggz

    @PeakInTwoYears

    @Pedale.Forchetta

    have a look at his beautiful site http://camillejohnmcmillan.com/

    Wow. The Reynolds photos–just what I went to first–have color and texture that are hyper-real. Just gorgeous. I can feel and smell the grease and metal shavings.

    Working in a metal shop, I must disagree, nothing gorgeous about that stuff.

    That Reynolds factory could do with a jolly good steam clean. Seriously – it worries me that people let that much crap accumulate on surfaces that could easily be kept properly maintained, whether it’s a bike or a hulking great metal press.

    @Dan R Harsh. But at least she calls you pumpkin, not bitch. To your face anyway…

  10. @ChrisO

    @DerHoggz

    @PeakInTwoYears

    @Pedale.Forchetta

    have a look at his beautiful site http://camillejohnmcmillan.com/

    Wow. The Reynolds photos–just what I went to first–have color and texture that are hyper-real. Just gorgeous. I can feel and smell the grease and metal shavings.

    Working in a metal shop, I must disagree, nothing gorgeous about that stuff.

    That Reynolds factory could do with a jolly good steam clean. Seriously – it worries me that people let that much crap accumulate on surfaces that could easily be kept properly maintained, whether it’s a bike or a hulking great metal press

    Sometimes it’s better to leave the gunk on as it becomes part of the machinery. I’ve cleaned many machines as a operator, but have to agree Reynolds is a very dark dingy place. It’s what comes out the front door that matters.

  11. @Dan_R

    @Rob 5 days? Man, the longest “stage” race I have done is 4 stages in three days. I secured a strong place in the bottom third and was completely sun-fucked after the last stage. I weakly rolIed into the front seat of the car for the 4 dried rive home and my VMH, who just rode the women’s race and had to be lumped in with the pros for numbers, turns to me in the passenger seat and says…

    “oh pumpkin, does your cunt hurt? Or do you have sand in your ovaries? Because I think I rode alot more kms than you did this weekend.”

    Priceless….I bet you felt about 2ft tall……..through the miasma of post ride exhaustion………

  12. @sthilzy

    Yes true, the final product is most important. But from some of my experiences with construction companies and system installers the ones who have an organised and tidy yard or fabrication area are more likely to produce the final product with the least amount of hassle and the highest quality.

    Not universal of course, but like a bike and rider – if someone turns up on a filthy frame the immediate assumption is going to be against them being the sort of person you want to have riding at close quarters. And you’ll be pleasantly surprised if it turns out otherwise.

    Are there any pictures of the Columbus factory to make a comparison I wonder ?

  13. Sometimes I think it might be fun to work in a bike shop while I finish school and before I get a “real” job. But, just like a lot of things, fun in theory but I don’t think I’d like it as a job since it would steal some of the fun and casualness for me. I’m sure lots of you have worked in shops though.

    “Un homme en forme est un homme malade.” Ah, this makes a lot of sense & coupled with the race car analogy sorts out my confusion about him not looking like a professional athlete. His body is primed to do one thing very well.

    Sports! I’m with ya, scaler. I can no longer stomach American football. It’s so slow, there is far too much arguing/analysis/replay of every single down. And the college football season isn’t even over yet? I also don’t understand the NBA. I actually enjoy watching faux wrestling now and again for the silliness of it and to me to NBA is only slightly different, especially during the regular season. Entertain, yes. Heated competition, rarely.

    I’m still pissed off about the NHL strike since I have finally found free tickets to games. I only follow PRO cycling, futbol, and hockey (if it’s being played) these days. Absolutely no love for the “big three” American sports. Hell, I don’t even love lacrosse anymore and that was the love of my life for most of it. Kind of like what happened to surfing along the way – became all about show and not about substance. Oh well, I’m happy and have plenty of cycling to watch as it is. Heck, I could just watch old races on the ‘tube if the peloton ever strikes.

  14. @Dan_R

    @Rob  my VMH, who just rode the women’s race and had to be lumped in with the pros for numbers, turns to me in the passenger seat and says…

    “oh pumpkin, does your cunt hurt? Or do you have sand in your ovaries? Because I think I rode alot more kms than you did this weekend.”

    And that’s how we know you married an Australian. I think she may have even lifted those lines directly from the national anthem.

  15. @minion

    @Dan_R

    @Rob my VMH, who just rode the women’s race and had to be lumped in with the pros for numbers, turns to me in the passenger seat and says…

    “oh pumpkin, does your cunt hurt? Or do you have sand in your ovaries? Because I think I rode alot more kms than you did this weekend.”

    And that’s how we know you married an Australian. I think she may have even lifted those lines directly from the national anthem.

    Yeah, she’s a catch alright. I just need to watch my back at the top of the stairs.

    @Deakus
    I wish I could pretend to be a pimp from Oakland. Actually, when I was in the army the saying went, “hey Sarge, don’t make me call my mom and tell her I am in the infantry, she thinks I do something with more class. I told her I play piano in a whore house in Red Deer.” Um, you should see Red Deer.

  16. Back to the original AOP topic – after choosing her pick for the winning picture from the photograph competition Mrs Engine went on to say that “there’s nothing a bowl of soup and a good wash wouldn’t cure”.

  17. I can relate to this photo.  We Velominati obsess with the desire to “look pro” and yet when we return from a ride where copious amounts of V were sprayed about we, or should I say “I”, usually dismount the bike, kick off the Pepe Le Pews, take off the jersey, pull the bib straps down and flop on the couch and relish that ethereal tug-of-war between the desire to fall asleep and the craving to stay awake and enjoy the endorphins.  Most happily is seems (from the photo above) that though I am sprawled on the couch, HRM strap dangling loosely from a strengthless hand, pasty white torso glaring, etc. that I am indeed “looking pro”.  Save the extra 16k of girth but I’m working on that too.

  18. “Pasty white torso” was mentioned, and this came to my mind. -The tan lines are OK.

  19. @Steampunk Definite upgrade from all of those Aussies.

  20. “We Are the Robots…”

  21. @Cyclops

    I can relate to this photo. We Velominati obsess with the desire to “look pro” and yet when we return from a ride where copious amounts of V were sprayed about we, or should I say “I”, usually dismount the bike, kick off the Pepe Le Pews, take off the jersey, pull the bib straps down and flop on the couch and relish that ethereal tug-of-war between the desire to fall asleep and the craving to stay awake and enjoy the endorphins. Most happily is seems (from the photo above) that though I am sprawled on the couch, HRM strap dangling loosely from a strengthless hand, pasty white torso glaring, etc. that I am indeed “looking pro”. Save the extra 16k of girth but I’m working on that too.

    Hey…relax a bit! I thought you looked at pretty good fightin’ weight in your submission for Photo of the Year!

  22. @sengelov

    “Pasty white torso” was mentioned, and this came to my mind. -The tan lines are OK.

    Shit I thought that was a top he was pulling down at first!

  23. Being from Scotland, I thought I was highly familiar with the pasty white skin affliction. This, however, takes the prize. I mean, has that torso EVER been exposed to direct sunlight? To really win the prize, join the dots and try and figure out which country he was in when he said he wasn’t there.

  24. @sengelov

    Please pass the fork.  I need to gouge out my eyes.

  25. I thought the starting image was just Frank post Haleakala Round IIV

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