Archive for the ‘mountain biking’ Category

Communist dupes

Santa Cruz Bicycles has the “clever” Custom Color Choice Program logo up on their homepage, complete with Soviet-style artwork:

dumb nostalgia

Santa Cruz makes amazingly good bikes.  I had been looking forward to buying one for my midlife crisis as soon as I put a reasonable amount of miles on my Rumblefish to warrant the upgrade.  But just because Santa Cruz has misguided longing (caveat:  see their response below, even though I’m not buying it) for the good ol’ CCCP (which exterminated roughly 50 million human beings in the 20th century), I don’t suffer that same useful idiocy.  I will buy nothing from this company while it promotes such foolishness.

For those of you still open-minded enough to erase any notion of Soviet nostalgia, I recommend two excellent books:

  1. Dupes: How America’s Adversaries Have Manipulated Progressives for a Century“, by Paul Kengor (2010)
  2. Gulag: A History“, by Anne Applebaum (2003)

Update, 8/9/2012:  my brother received an email response to his complaint on this subject from Santa Cruz.  In part, it said

I think you may have misunderstood the underlying theme of this campaign.  It was not our intention to pay homage to, or make light of, the atrocities of the soviet communist regime, it was to parody the “CCCP” acronym by using it to mean the complete opposite of something it was previously associated with, a lack of choice.

In addition, they attached an earlier version of the artwork, which had a “much less subtle” tagline in the upper left hand side of the image:

ironic, right?

Parody?  I’m not buying it.  At best, this advertising campaign is in extremely poor taste.  By the logic given, why not name the campaign “Auschwitz!” with the implied tagline “Chill, brah!  We ain’t the Führer.  You get a choice!  LOLZ, don’t forget to dig the irony.”

a proud, determined mother

3 bobcats in broad daylight, a rare treat

The highlight of this morning’s 25 mile ride surprised me around 9:30am, on the back side of the fitness loop behind the Col Scott Fitness Center.  Momma bobcat stood firm in the middle of the trail, her two young closer to the tall grass and safety.  I stopped and eased off the bike, hoping to extract my camera from my pack in time.  She made a small but deliberate movement in my direction, but mostly stood tall.  Her young moved silently into cover, and while she gave me a long stare, she didn’t linger long enough for the photo shoot.  This shot from (minus the thick winter coat) comes closest to what she looked like. A magnificent animal.

I haul your garbage out of the woods

I’m a conservative far right nutjob who loves mountain biking, and who (actually) cares about the environment beyond vapid bumper stickers.  (Whoa!  Put that in your water pipe and smoke it.)  I already carry a heavy pack, but when I come across your garbage on the trails, I stop and haul it out, Leave No Trace style.

Come to think of it, I sure do wish the CF Party would take a hint and start practicing Leave No Trace governance.

O’Shaughnessy sunset

Yesterday evening at O’Shaughnessy Point on Monte Sano, I hopped off my bike to appreciate the moment.  I lingered until just past the sunset of an unseasonably warm day, but pending darkness beckoned after that.  3.5 riding miles through pleasantly cooling woods remained back to the truck, with only fading twilight for navigation.  The Bankhead overlook over the Sinks onto Stone Cuts sounded quieter than usual, with muted greyish purple pre-Spring trees to match.  Rounding the bend down Old Bankhead, the city lights north towards Moores Mill Road were equally breathtaking.  The evening and seasonal timing were perfect.

O'Shaughnessy Point mountain biking sunset

there's no place like home

my new Thudbuster

Yeah, I know it’s a poor man’s soft tail, but I’m hoping to break it in with 50 miles of trail riding this weekend. I’m psyched.

Cane Creek Thudbuster

Cane Creek Thudbuster

perfect morning at the Moontown overlook

After a cup of coffee, I met Ethan on the trail this morning by 6:30 right before sunrise.  We were both dragging at first, but that didn’t last long.  We started at the Bankhead Parkway barricade, rode Mountain Mist until we joined back up with the Family Trail near O’Shaughnessy Point.  One flat for each of us along the way gave me a couple of chances to catch my breath, so that I could (sort of) keep up with Ethan.  After finishing the Family Trail, I headed back down to the truck.  Another great Saturday morning ride.  Here was the Moontown overlook view soon after I left the biker’s parking lot:

Moontown overlook in early Fall

Moontown overlook in early Fall

Huntsville time warp

Our local bike store (Bicycles Etc.) moved close to Five Points recently.  There service area behind the shop feels like a step back in time – it’s a very cool space.

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