I've been toying with the idea of "curating" (is there any among us who can use that phrase without gagging?) a bike show that features my favorite Minneapolis bikes. Real bikes, not show bikes. Sort of the anti-NAHBS but of course not the anti-NAHBS because a real bike (as I define it) can be handmade and it can be fancy and nice and all of that. So I guess not really an anti-NAHBS but an anti showbike show.
The idea is this: Pick out my favorite bikes of the folks in the Minneapolis cycling community and have them ride them to the show, hang them on a wall and then we'll all get drunk and look at bikes. Simple right.
So what kind of bikes would be included then? As a supreme court justice once said regarding pornography "I can't define it, but I know it when I see it." Same thing with a "real bike," loosely though it's a bike that the owner loves, cherishes, can only be pried from their cold dead fingers, and has had the absolute shit kicked out of it in the most loving way possible.
If you're from Minneapolis I'll give you some examples: Kelly Mac's brown steamroller, Landon's Bauer (before the polo mods), Josh's Giant mountainbike, Nate's Pugsley, Billy Handjob's Olmo, Leif's Colnago, etc.
One of my favorite bikes is Martin Rudnick's Merckx. This was his summer work bike (Martin is true MPLS courier royalty as the only man to compete in every Stuporbowl) for a number of years and has clearly been ridden to hell and back. It's been his since '97, and just saw it's first Minnesota winter this past year.
Just look at this thing
(forgive the poor photos, it was 9pm when I shot these but had to take the opportunity as it came)
This bike is like Mickey Rourke's craggy face, there's just something beautiful about all that destruction
ridden to hell Campy Record hub
I love this thing, so much character, so many miles, so many stories.
I will let you know how my attempts at organizing this lovely excuse for a party goes, I've already got a potential venue lined up so hopefully sometime in July. In the meantime I hope to keep posting more of these beautifully used machines.
If you have a bike you'd like to see posted, please upload your images to your Flickr and send me an email with the link. Please don't email me the images, if you're bike passes muster I will pull them and post them with credit given.
I'm not looking for show ponies, or "dirty bikes." That's not what this is about, it's about bikes that have seen you through your best and worst times, from glory to the gutter.
The lifetime loves.
To give you an idea of the type of machine I'm talking about, I will admit that I personally don't own a single worthy bike, my Benotto the alleycat machine, first singlespeed, and commuter comes closest, however I have too many bikes to have put the necessary time in on one to make into the kind of thing we're discussing here.
Be honest with yourself, a favorite bike simply won't due, not without years and years of usage.
So if you've truly got em, please send them my way. Wherever they are, wherever you are.