Wednesday, November 25, 2009


the morning away from work is a glorious thing.

i have walked through the misty and at times, heavy rain in waxed canvas and tweed wool from donnegal, pushing a stroller, drinking a coffee, and enjoying detachment from the bustle.

there is space in this moment for ideas. 

ideas about how to cook tofu, composing a portrait, methods of seduction, and a drawing. time. peace. caffeine. all good things for bringing about ideas. i even thought about bikes.

this blog is titled threadless because that's what it is. it doesn't really have an obvious common thread, other than its being authored by me, and i like bikes and stuff. you just have to grab on, torque to spec (or thereabouts), and steer the best line. threadless.

i talk about bikes. i talk about commuting. i think a lot about a lot of other things. i usually have no time to write about any of it. then i remember that no one will read this, i have an idea, and i sit down to type. toddler sleeping is a glorious thing. without a daily two-wheeled commute through the wilds of rich and poor toronto, writing about bikes is almost obsolete. i know: i should get out there and train and write about the suffering i put myself through for the sake of rapha-esque epicness. but today it's raining. and there's a doctor appointment in the afternoon that i'll probably run to with the jog stroller. and the serotta is so beautifully clean right now...

anyway, off to other ideas. here's to rain drops on moldy bathroom skylights.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


this is going to be my second-last week of bicycle commuting in the city of toronto, and i'm trying to decide if i'm going to miss it.

due to recent job switching and general whatnot, my commute to work will be cut in half by frequency, and that half will be cut by about 80% in distance. i feel like some part of my identity will erode as my chain will corrode from lack of use.

i have been commuting by bicycle for the last 8 years or so, making my way around toronto in a gradually maturing fashion. it began with carefreeness and happiness and the challenge of threading tight lines through traffic. then i became aware of doors and poor nighttime vision for drivers and unlit cyclists. then i got hit by cars. then i hit cars. i rode with a messenger bag. i rode with panniers. i almost always rode road bikes. i tried fixies. i rode mountain bikes through the winter. i switched to a messenger backpack. i tried panniers again. i rode through the winter. i became a true bicycle commuter. neoprene booties, reflective anklets, panniers, fenders, huge lights, tires called 'city slicker', i've had it all, and all of it was completely not hip. 

i look enough like a commuter to get the nod from fellow co-mmu-ters. i ride a singlespeed that's not fixed and i don't have a moustache so i get no nod from hipsters (the pannier and backpack also throw them off, along with the helmet). and there's no nod from messengers because, although i kinda ride like they do sometimes, i'm not as fast and there's nothing so non-messenger as that damn pannier (or helmet). it's a lonely niche that i occupy, but i was startled to run into someone in the same niche just yesterday. we looked at each other and tried to figure out if we were seeing straight. it was uncanny yet satisfying. sometimes it's nice to not be so alone.

one of the problems of no longer commuting is that i will actually have to motivate myself to get on a bike every(other) day. right now, it's the only way i get anywhere, especially to work, so there's no question. of course i'm riding my bike 16 miles today. sometimes it's a question of which one. sometimes it's a question of how i'm going to fit everything on the trip. but it's never a question as to whether or not the trip will be made on two wheels. in fact, i've only missed one half-day of riding to work thus far, and that was because i already had too many bikes at school so i had to take some home without taking any more in. all this aside, i do wonder what it will be like to have the necessity taken out of the daily riding. in all likelihood, it should increase the enjoyment and rapha-esque nature of my time on a bike. commuting has a certain way of wearing down my love of riding. like brake pads after a good salty slush ride home, my love of bikes is sometimes worn down past the indicator lines, and left dripping all over my hardened, structured resolve. perhaps the lack of necessity will turn it into pure joy. unadulterated by pragmatic influence, two wheels will once again become a metaphor for escape, satisfaction, self-improvement, discipline, fitness, and all of those other things i forgot about in the last few months of work, and commuting to it.

whatever the case, i will continue to love bikes. i hope to continue to ride throughout the winter. i hope to keep up some form of two-wheeled fitness. but most of all, i hope to get the nod from other closet commuters who wish they could be out there, wearing their resolves to the bone when it's minus 40 and snowing.

Monday, November 2, 2009

something is wrong.

of course there is something wrong.

i made the mistake of opening my mouth again, and after a long stretch of not getting in trouble for so doing, i was thoroughly parked in the lambasting chair and thrashed for voicing my opinionated questions. unfortunately, i hadn't planned well and my audience/thrashing mob was not familiar with my previous entry which essentially acts as a disclaimer regarding my tendency to come off as an arrogant bastard. of course, i am an arrogant bastard.

unfortunately, too, is the fact that i have fundamental assumptions that are consistently wrong. one might argue that this would render me a psychopath. i have these things that i just assume everyone else, or just maybe someone else, probably also considers/believes/ponders/assumes. for example, aren't we all on the same page about wearing underpants with riding shorts? right: it's something we NEVER do. or that whole thing about tire pressure on road bikes - if you can squish it, that's bad. don't put milk in herbal tea. always hold the fucking door open for the person behind you. always say thank you (in any language you feel comfortable using) to the person who holds that door open for you. mamas are to be respected. we never dance as well as we think we do. apples and grapes go well with cheese. smoking is dumb. and we're all here to find and propagate some form of Goodness.



am i all alone in these thinkings?

fine. whatever. probably. the only thing is, this is the internet and i can say whatever i want and not be lambasted because this blog is invisible to search engines and contains nothing of note to anyone ready to lambast let alone read long enough to lambast anyway. (isn't lambast a fantastic word?) the point is: i think we're all here on the planet to live and hopefully quest for some kind of Good, with a capital G. obviously, Goodness is unfortunately open to the flawed interpretations of billions of flawed humans, and one person's Goodness is another person's Goofness. however, questing for Goodness seems to be a valid, and necessary, aspect of a human life. we're human. we have brains (but not governments) that have capacity beyond the basic food, shelter, clothing bit. we want to do a bit of thriving, transcend that surviving. right? and maybe while we're here, we'll put in some time and work and make some part of this vast place a little better than it was when we left it, and we'll do it ON PURPOSE.

i write this in obvious frustration with some things. the mainstream is necessary and vast and varied and i certainly participate in it from time to time, likely unconsciously (like everyone else), but i fancy myself foreign to it all the time. i also quest to share knowledge. i seek knowledge. i seek to impart it. it's my job. it drives me a bit insane when people elect to surrender their agency, reject knowledge-seeking, and dive headfirst into the mainstream to follow like jetsom a sticky slow current of stupidity and mass. gone is the quest for Goodness. gone is independent thought. gone is curiosity. gone is all that shit that my grandmother fought for in the 60s.

now, for the post-disclaimer.

i only write this because i can write. i have the luxury of being detached from all kinds of earthly states that would keep me otherwise occupied and far too busy to think about how we should all be questing for my idea of Goodness. whatever. a lot of people quest for Food before Goodness, and they don't even get that every day so who the fuck am i to sit around talking about Goodness? well, i'm someone who recognizes that there are people who don't eat in this world and that's pretty bad so maybe i can keep that in mind when i'm living my day to day. it's a consciousness thing, and it's pretty depressing when people sign out of being conscious. if they've never been conscious, they're not awake and it's not much their fault necessarily. but to surrender it, that's just deplorable. keep thinking. keep questing. do shit that you actually believe in.

let's ride bikes.