Archive | La Vie Velominatus

The road unknown. Photo via Szymonbike

Route Finding

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I have memories of my life before Cycling, but as the years wear slowly on my mind their edges become less pronounced, like water wearing away at a sharp stone. My memories of Cycling, which start at the age of eight, remain somehow vivid. As Pedalwan learner to my father, one of the many arts…

Boonen in his final Paris-Roubaix

The Color White

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I saw the Black Crowes in concert some years ago, and as the band swung into their first number, Chris Robinson casually strolled onstage wearing head to toe white sequins. Later in the show, he remarked that nothing quite makes you feel like a virgin like wearing white. The color white is indeed a bold statement.…

René Privat wears yellow as Master Jacques reads a newspaper and tries not to notice.

Youth

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I’ve never been afraid of imitating my heroes, they always seemed like the best examples available and as a student of life (as every child is) it seemed normal to me to copy every aspect of their lives that I had visibility into. I copied my dad’s handwriting as I was learning to write just as I…

The Walker Hour Bike

Support Your Local Framebuilder

by / / 158 posts

I won’t hold liking cats against you, but if you don’t like dogs, you’re dead to me. Some things aren’t left to opinions, like whether Star Wars is good or not. You’re free to be an outlier – and I loves me some outliers and I loves me a rebel – but in some cases,…

We wish you a Merckxy Christmas and a Coppi New Year!

Merckxy Christmas and Coppi New Year!

by / / 84 posts

Another year come and gone, another pile of New Year’s resolutions out the door, done and dusted. It’s a good thing I don’t recall what they were; I have a feeling this period of reflection might loom a bit darker if I was in a position to appreciate just how short I’ve come up on them. I’m…

What we do in life, echoes in eternity.

On Rule #3: Role Modelling

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What we do in life echoes in eternity. – Maximus, Gladiator We all make mistakes. We can only hope that they are not repeated by our disciples. It is only for the sake of this lesson that I expose you visually to this truth.

The mountain does not wait for your form to return.

Patience

by / / 51 posts

It’s been about a month since I’ve last been on the bike; I can’t recall the last time I went for such a dry spell. The reasons don’t matter; life and work have been hectic, I moved, the bikes were just out of order and inaccessible enough to make it easy to find an excuse not to…

Three gears: a lever and no more wing nuts. Luxury.

Shifting Sands

by / / 80 posts

One of my favorite stories in Cycling is of the 1989 World Championships. It was a very lumpy parcours, with a particularly tough climb near the end of the circuit. Sean Kelly had a brilliant sprint but could get over the climbs handily enough that he fancied his chance to finally win the rainbow bands. With…

The Prophet gets pumped to ride. Hopefully that thing isn't going to find its way onto his bike.

Winter

by / / 158 posts

As Cyclists, we are uniquely subjected to the changing of seasons. The green canopy of forest that we ride through in Summer gives way in Fall to one of orange and yellow that mimics the fire of sunset. Just as those hues give notice to the changing from day to night, so do they now signal…

Hey Fausto, go easy on that.

Guest Article: The Longest Road

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Let us thank @The Oracle for contributing this guest article. We haven’t been putting up many guest articles so it’s good to have something substantial to begin with again. I don’t think cyclists are any more or any less addictive or OCD than anyone else. We are just humans who love to ride the bike.…

The commuter bike that once again represents the simple freedom of riding a bike.

La Vie Velominatus: The Joyride

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There are very few experiences as incredible as riding a bike; the wind in your face, the sensation of generating speed under your own power, the balance of forces that almost magically hold the bike suspended upright. It is the closest we humans will ever come to feeling the miracle of flight; it is the closest…

Feeding the Good Wolf

The Good Wolf

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One evening, an elderly Cherokee brave told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “my son, the battle is between two ‘wolves’ inside us all. One is evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is…

Big Mig, waiting for an appointment with the Man with the Hammer.

Waiting for the Man

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You have three questions going through your mind: How far to go? How hard am I trying? Is the pace sustainable for that distance? If the answer is “yes”, that means you’re not trying hard enough. If it’s no, it’s too late to do anything about it. You’re looking for the answer “maybe”. Chris Boardman,…

Disorganized Chaos

An Open Letter to Drivers

by / / 92 posts

I imagine that unless you’re a Cyclist, it is quite difficult to understand what it’s like to ride a bicycle on the open road amongst traffic. It is a vulnerable feeling to be riding along a road with limited or no escape routes, surrounded by vehicles who outweigh you by several orders of magnitude. Particularly when you take into consideration…

Sometimes you're the joker, sometimes you're the joked.

Ebb and Flow

by / / 35 posts

As Tyler Farrar rode by in the other direction, we gave each other a subtle wave; not the wave between friends, but between brothers of the road. On another day, I might have turned around and chased him down, like the first time I’d seen him riding locally. Not so much to bother him or to ride with…

You light up my legs, you give me hope. Photo JEFF PACHOUD/ GETTY

Lights On Legs

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Cycling is made up of hundreds of minute details, forming a larger entity which is generally simplified and viewed as the intrinsically simple act of riding––or racing––a bicycle. Getting on and pedalling, fast, may be the crux of winning the Tour, Roubaix, or the local B grade crit, but if it is held as the most important aspect, then…

Warming up for an hour of suffering. Photo ChrissyOne

The Quitter

by / / 76 posts

The truth is that I’d been thinking about quitting for the best part of forty-five minutes. Round and round I went on that track, every lap hurting a little bit more than the previous; every lap taking a little bit longer to complete, every lap that voice inside my head getting a little bit louder.…

The case for black socks...and orange patent leather shoes.

On Rule #28: The Case for Black Socks

by / / 127 posts

Science has proven that people who wear crazy socks are smarter than those boring snooze factories who wear simple plain socks. I know the data supporting the claims is legitimate because I read it on LinkedIn. Also, when I say “read”, I mean that I glanced briefly at the title while simultaneously performing several other critical…

The Machine of the Hour

Festum Prophetae: Waiting for the Hour

by / / 119 posts

Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth. – Mike Tyson The one thing everyone should always plan for is that however well-conceived a program might be, things will never go to plan. The high level plan for my Festum Prophetae Hour Ride was as follows: Have a custom Hour Bike built by Don Walker. Because…

The way down should hurt as much or more than the way up. Photo: Jared Gruber

On Rule #93: The Throw Down

by / / 70 posts

The human mind is designed to forget how much things suck. That is a fact. If women had the capacity to retain meaningful data on how horrible things can be, there would be exactly zero families on the planet with more than one child. This has nothing to do with how wonderful children are; it has to do with…

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