Sunday, May 23, 2010

A Tall Bike Sighting.

Impractical in every way and also very amusing.

Bike To Work Week - Part 2.

National Bike-to-Work Day - May 21, 2010

National Bike-to-Work Week was great.  I commuted on my bike three days out of five.  I did all my errands that I'm not yet equipped to do on my bike (dropping off and picking up laundry at fluff n' fold, buying 40 lbs of cat litter) on Monday and Tuesday so I was free to ride my bike the rest of the week. 

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Product Review: Bontrager "Grocery Bag" Panniers.

(Photo via Bontrager)

In case you're wondering pannier is pronounced "panyair." In order to avoid sounding like a greenhorn, avoid saying "paneer" which is an Indian or Farsi word for cheese. A pannier is otherwise known as a saddlebag but everyone knows that no woman wants to even have that word in her vocabulary, so pannier it is

The Bontrager Grocery Bag Pannier sells for $50. At first I thought that was  bit pricey but the quality of the bag is really excellent. I liked it so much after I bought it that I bought a second one.  The hooks fit snuggly on my Planet Bike Eco Rack (which I adore) and they don't budge.  I always have at least one of them with me when I'm on my bike.  I've even received compliments on the bag when off the bike from people who thought it was just a purse . Personally, I don't think it makes an attractive purse but it's nice to know maybe it's not screaming "pannier." The bags are sturdy and they hold a lot of stuff. There's even an inner liner that comes out and lets the bag hold even more.  I have not tried using the bag in the rain, but I don't think they are considered especially waterproof. Besides the small outer pocket there is a very small inner pocket but other than that there's just one large inner space. My one wish is that they were a bit prettier or had a bit more personality but I understand why they made them so generic - they are really a utilitarian pannier anyone can use. Overall I'm very happy with these bags and would definitely recommend them.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Bike To Work Week.

If you are a reader bike blogs I'm sure you know it's National Bike to Work Week.  I'll leave it to other much better informed blogs to report on all the details.  I'm trying to step it up this week and bike to work as much as possible.

Bike commuting is great!  Give it a try if you haven't already.

A Bike Date.

This bike date was actually back in January. Going through my iPhoto library I realize that I have so many pictures I've taken for the blog that I haven't posted!  So I'm going to do some catching up. On this chilly night we went to The Tasting Kitchen in Venice with some friends. If you live in LA it's really a must try restaurant - one of my new favorites. The restaurant is only a couple of miles away from my boyfriend's place so it was a great opportunity to go on a bike date. Our friends were so impressed that we rode our bikes there - and we didn't have to valet park.  The only thing I wish I had brought that night was gloves! I've since learned that lesson and always keep a pair of gloves in my pannier. Sorry for the really poor flash photography.  Must work on my digital photography skills!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

"Let's Go Ride A Bike" Summer Games

One of my favorite bike blogs is "Let's Go Ride A Bike." Dottie (in Chicago) and Trisha (in Nashville) ride their beautiful bikes every day, live car-free, do it all with style, and love every minute of it. This summer they are holding a contest and the grand prize is a Batavus Bub! I will be participating and blogging about it here.  Stay tuned!

Taken from their website:

How to play, you ask?
It’s easy. There are three main categories, and six events in each category. Complete events in each category over a three week period, and tell us about it via blog post link, email or photo addition to our Summer Games Flickr Pool. Entries must include a story and a photo of each event you complete.  If you enter via a post on your own blog, please link to this announcement in your entry, include one of our badges and let us know via email.
Anyone who completes at least two events in each of the three categories will be entered to win the Batavus BuB by random drawing. We’re also giving away prizes as readers complete each category.
May 17-June 6: Social Cycling
  • Go on a group ride
  • Leave a nice note on a bike, or say hi to a cyclist at a red light
  • Schedule a bike date with a friend or partner — dress up!
  • Recruit a non-biking friend for a ride
  • Ride with your family
June 7-June 27: Learning Experiences
  • Perform a maintenance task — big or small!
  • Decorate your bike
  • Read a book about cycling
  • Carry a load on your bike — groceries, etc.
  • Test ride a different type of bike than you normally ride
June 28-July 18: New Territory
  • Ride a greenway
  • Have a bicycle picnic
  • If you don’t normally ride to work, commute by bike, or by bike/train or bike/bus
  • If you do commute, take the long way home: add distance to your usual ride
  • Explore a new part of town by bike

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Jessica Schroeder is my Bike Twin!

(Photos via What I Wore)

Recently Jessica Schroeder over at her wonderful fashion blog "What I Wore" announced that she just bought a new bike. And that new bike happens to be a Bianchi Milano! Being the style maven that she is, she even managed to accessorize the bike perfectly - finding a basket that actually looks good on it. I've never been able to find the right basket for this bike.

Originally I wandered over to her sight because another bike blog had pointed out her cute vintage bike that she rides around Brooklyn. Well I guess it was finally time to turn that bike in.

Congratulations, Jessica, on your new bike! I hope you enjoy it!

I don't know why it's so fun to spot bike twins.  Do you look for your bike twins around your town and on the internet?

Friday, May 7, 2010

The Ladies of Masi.

(All images via Masi)

When I was browsing the Masi website today I was impressed to see that they used women in many of their pictures.  In fact I saw more pictures of female models than male models! These pictures were so great I couldn't use just one.

These pictures feature the steel single speed/fixed gear Speciale Commuter.  I love the bike but I worry that even the shortest (49) might be a bit tall for me.  My boyfriend rides the Speciale Fixed which is a very similar bike but is geared higher and may have a bit more of a track geometry (this part I'm not sure about).

I think it's pretty cool that a hard core bike company like Masi chose to use women in their promotional pictures.  And what makes it extra great is that they are real-looking women wearing normal clothes and that the Speciale Commuter is not a women's specific bike. Kudos, Masi!!!

If you've never ridden a Masi I suggest you find your LBS that carries them and go test ride one.  They are SWEET!

(P.S. Don't you just love her t-shirt in that last picture? Where do I get one of those?)