Anatomy Of A Photo: Mad Jacques, Pioneer Of Neutral Service

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“Où est ma voiture banane?”

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, Jacques would appear out of the thin air of the Alps, armed with his trusty Silca and a set of nail clippers, offering assistance to any rider that needed it. Most of the time, they didn’t, but they knew when that mad glint lit up in his eyes, there was no course of action beyond waiting for the police to arrive while Jacques manically pumped an already inflated tyre while yelling “Mes têtards émigrent”.

The last known sighting of M. Mavic (which translates literally as “replace me”) was around 1957 around Grenoble. The only remaining evidence of Jacques’ and his innovative service work is his oil-stained raincoat and a matchbox containing a 3/16 ball bearing tangled in hair, now housed in the Plumbers Museum in Oudenaarde. With only patchy anecdotal history to go by, the life of Jacques is still one of mystery, violence and paté.

*What do you know of Jacques’ history?

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60 Replies to “Anatomy Of A Photo: Mad Jacques, Pioneer Of Neutral Service”

  1. @wiscot

    This is why I love this site: The Mad Jacques AOP that kinda got WAY off base (guilty as charged as an accessory) followed by the Third Hour. From the ridiculous to the sublime. Seriously, with all the crap going on out there, this site is a safe haven for us all.

    @wilburrox

    This might be one of the stranger threads I’ve read here. But then again, I haven’t been around that long. I’ll probably be better off just sticking to the bikes thread… Cheers all.

    Fuck, Friend … THIS is what it is all about.  @wiscot nailed it.  Take the crazy with the sublime.  It’s what life is all about!

  2. @wilburrox

    This might be one of the stranger threads I’ve read here. But then again, I haven’t been around that long. I’ll probably be better off just sticking to the bikes thread… Cheers all.

    Yes. Perhaps you could start by checking your bike for an Irish Pirate Treasure Trench.

  3. @harminator

    @wilburrox

    This might be one of the stranger threads I’ve read here. But then again, I haven’t been around that long. I’ll probably be better off just sticking to the bikes thread… Cheers all.

    Yes. Perhaps you could start by checking your bike for an Irish Pirate Treasure Trench.

    I’m thinking Irish Pirate Treasure Trench is not result of an auto correct typo kinda thing… So I checked my bike and was looking all over for IPTT before I head out yesterday on to some dirt and I’ll be damned if I could figure out what to look for. But when I got back, all the red dirt. any chance that is IPTT ?? Just curious…

  4. @wiscot

    @Teocalli

    @wiscot I bow to your clearly superior knowledge of these things………

    In my defense, I had to google the spelling.

    I’m not sure that categorises under defence.  But then again, it could.

    (off-topic aside: this is easily the most enjoyable thread on any forum/site that I have read for some time)

  5. I can add nothing to the history, I notice the rider is taking every effort not make eye contact with him though, presumably for fear of being eaten!

  6. @wilburrox No treasure trench there. Are you Irish by chance?

    I tried searching the site for the IPTT thread to no avail. But the keywords do link to interesting pages.

    I don’t think I could repeat it and do it justice. I need more time…

  7. @therealpeel

    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.

    “Making fun of”? Nah, we all love your uncle – it’s just that he’s clearly a crazy mad fucker. That’s why he is beloved around here!

  8. @Harminator Me? Irish? I’m an American mutt. On the other hand, there are a lot of Malone’s on the missus’ side of the family and my daughter, with her name, will be welcome to any party on the 17th of March. Cheers.

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