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Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishes(35 posts)

Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishesfiltersweep
Aug 12, 2002 5:51 PM
I finally ordered a new bike. The last three weeks have been hell. The research, the doubts, the financial calculations, the stress on my marriage, the stress on my mental health. I mean, this is a serious commitment, not to be taken lightly. I'm half convinced that in the pre-internet days, I would have made a very different (and easier) decision. I would not have had access to nearly as much info, the variables would have been kept to a more manageable level. My greatest villain in my quest has been "bike lust." There, I've taken the first step by admitting my affliction.

I've been doing some serious "soul searching" to determine what exactly fuels my "bike lust." Is my present bike truly NOT good enough? It WAS good enough when I purchased it. Am I BETTER than my old bike? Am I just looking for a trophy bike? The old bike isn't the best looking bike in the world, but I can ride it long and hard, and yet it is relatively low maintenance. Is it too heavy? Logically, I should be getting a better workout on a heavier bike, and it should be less likely to flex under a heavy load. The fact remains, and it is simple: I wanted a new bike.

Anyway, I went to the LBS today and took this new bike on a test ride. We went down to the river it was quite deserted in the middle of the morning. I rode her hard, up and down the hills, standing to see if she would flex, but she didn't flinch. I knew that I had to have this bike.

The guys at the bike shop were like dealers and pimps. They could get me anything I wanted to go with this bike. The decadence of my experience was appalling. I tried to show some restraint, but resistance was futile in such a shameless atmosphere. They would build it exactly as I wanted, no matter how perverse my taste (including, as one salesman put it, "we can make it 'complete Euro-trash"- no kidding). Everyone in the shop was FLAUNTING their various fetishes. There was no hope. I was lost. My innocence was lost. Saturday I was there just to check it out, a voyeur perhaps, but today? I had suddenly become an active participant! The horror!

Again, I blame it on the internet- I didn't even know this bike shop existed (or even COULD exist) until a poster here pointed it out. I noticed his brand of bike was also sold there, so I must naturally assume that he has sipped from the same sweet fountain.

It is PORNOGRAPHY to browse through all sorts of bikes online. Every arcane taste is catered to. The bizarre and abnormal are celebrated. I see carbon this and titanium that- things I NEVER see "in real life" on the road. It is only in the fantasy world of the internet that the fringe congregates to discuss their fetishes for their more esoteric desires. I've tried to discuss these issues with those nearest to me, but I am usually quickly rebuffed like I'm a freak. But that fantasy CAN be reality... only at WHAT PRICE?

Oh, the price? I've struggled to justify that as well. I'm selling all sorts of junk on ebay, I just received a work bonus, I didn't take a vacation this summer, I had an unexpected royalty check, I'll sell the old bike (I promise!)... it cost LESS than I though it would, the frame is on clearance. The promises I made to myself, that I doubt I'll ever keep: it will be the last bike I ever own, it will never need any upgrading. It is all part of the denial.

It is a sick world we live in. What started as a quick peek into the underbelly of an LBS turned into a slippery slope decent into complete wickedness. There is no turning back.
Hear ... Here ... Bully ... Bullyj-son
Aug 12, 2002 6:39 PM
Well said and well stated and well argued. I've felt the same painfrustrationelation. It is such an elaborate exercise to decide on a new bike.

My wife has learned to humor me, and even to indulge my ceaseless rambling diatribes about my latest lustful desire.

As we walked our pugs in the park earlier this evening, I extolled to her the virtues of the frame I simply must have immediately: Fondriest P4 carbon (see the review at

Last week, the object of my (unnatural) desires was a Merckx Team SC. Before that, a Steelman SR. And before that ... well, you get the picture.

Part of the obsession of this sport is the endless search for the next bike. It occupies the part of my mind dedicated to cycling when I'm not actually riding.

My wife and I have developed a code. She'll ask me what I'm doing. And I'll sheepishly reply, "looking at porn on the internet." She's knows what I'm lusting over, and it has nothing to do with pouty lips.

By the way, what did you decide on?

It's not even that decadent....filtersweep
Aug 12, 2002 7:13 PM
...god, I'm already rationalizing. I grabbed a Look 281- matte black/nude so no team logos, with the new all-Carbon fork... where I started to really lose it was the bars. The salesman masterfully totalled everything up, then said, oh, we forgot the bars. He handed me one on those Easton EC90s- I swear it is as light as an empty soda can. He had me hooked, and I'm not that obsessive about weight (or am I?).

But hey, the frame was a closeout from 2001? Oh, and I didn't go with all Dura Ace- I ordered an Ultegra BB and crank... so I "saved some money."

A huge factor is that it is still cheaper than a new Trek 5200, which is where I drew the magic line, and I firmly believe I'm getting much more bang for the buck.
Congratulations, I also got a new 281,mahoneyjoe
Aug 12, 2002 7:37 PM
Kelme, about two months old, in Ultegra. I love how that bike rides, much better than my old bike, and it spoke to me while the Trek 5200 and Kestrels didn't.
Congratulations, I also got a new 281,filtersweep
Aug 12, 2002 9:21 PM
I really like the basic paint scheme (or lack thereof), the industrial design, and of course the ride is incredible. It really is a frame that needs to be seen in person to be appreciated (almost "retro futuristic") and I certainly didn't pick it up from their 1997 vintage HTML website.

I was lucky I could get as much Dura Ace as I did with just a slight increase in price. This shop seemed eager to do custom builds. Other shops had more of an all-or-none attitude about the build kits- and a much better deal than swapping parts off a built bike.
re: Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishesFredrico
Aug 12, 2002 7:07 PM
First of all, Filtersweep, you need to get laid. Fetish? Maybe an extension of the body, but a replacement for sex? Give me a break! And the guilt! Why do you feel guilty about such a life affirming activity as riding a great bike that you can feel one with, working in a perfect harmony with, thrilling and heart pounding?

Embrace your new cycle machine, toy, appendage, and appreciate, without guilt, the joys it brings you.

It is love, not lust. It will not bring you to dissolution, make you weaker, but rather make you more complete, stronger, in body and soul.

Ciao, my friend!

(one who shares your passion)

BTW, what bike did you buy and what are you getting rid of?
re: Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishesfiltersweep
Aug 12, 2002 7:28 PM
Getting rid of a Trek 2200... a purchase I made under heavy duress when I was pressured by my job to ride a bunch of charity events.

Hey, and I hope my odd sense of humor wasn't lost on you? I really don't feel an once of guilt. It isn't like I'm giving up food to buy this. I'm just stuck at work very late with nothing better to do...
love, lust it's all the same when you talk about bikes...nmDjudd
Aug 12, 2002 7:41 PM
re: heh funny!cyclejim
Aug 12, 2002 8:50 PM
My wife often joked that I loved bikes more than her when I was searching for my one. It's hard for those outside of our sport to understand or even have a concept of why we are this way. I stopped trying to explain it long ago. Heck even the "its better than being hooked on drugs or alcohol" line doesn't cut it anymore. I was so obsessed when I searched for my first road bike I thought I was going to go crazy. I just couldnt decide. I agonized for what seemed like weeks on end. I researched so many bikes they all started to seem the same. I test rode bike after bike and in the end was more confused than when I started. Then, when I finally broke and I made that split second decision to end my pain and just get that bike at the shop down the road, I swiped out my cell phone to make sure they still had it (I mean it had been there for 4 weeks and no one was touching it) and alas.... sorry we just sold it... man. Talk about being depressed.

Heres a thought for ya, I spent WAY more time researching and deciding what bike to buy than I did buying my house, which cost 100 times more than my bike. That says it all!
re: Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishesaliensporebomb
Aug 13, 2002 2:29 AM
Or worse:

The creepy, disturbing feeling once you're riding the new bike that other
bike riders are watching you and making judgements.

Or worse, making notes in little notebooks.

Nice post!
He scores!!!!!!gs6769
Aug 13, 2002 3:30 AM
Congrats F/S! Those matte black Looks are the goods.

Where did you buy? Did they have leather clad cycles posed in various torpid positions in the windows? No wonder then that you've opted for a French bike. Matte black finish=French maid costume...rooowwwwrr.

When can we expect to see this hellspawn on the road?
re: Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishesPMC
Aug 13, 2002 5:42 AM
Excellent choice!!! Did you end up getting the 57cm they had hanging above the front counter?
Aug 13, 2002 6:15 AM
That exact frame. I was a bit nervous about getting a 57 when I had been riding a 58 Trek, but the Look 57 actually is slightly larger than a 58 Trek, since they are measured a bit differently. I think the price tags they had on them were just to scare people away. I was reeled in when I saw that 55 team bike on the floor and did the old, "just out of curiousity, how much does one of these run?" routine, and was pleasantly surprised at the price for an Ultegra build, which was less than the posted price of a frame alone.

I can't say enough good things about that shop. Excllent tip from gs6769- I assumed they were just a bike shop for the "great unwashed masses"- the critical mass anarchists- based on location, their co-op mentality, how the shop spills out inot their parking lot, etc... but they are so much more than that. They cater to such a broad spectrum of bikes, yet they have people who actually are knowledgeable about road bikes. They have great prices without the "superstore" retail mentality. They also actually have parts in stock, no attitude. They were very patient- I didn't feel like they were just "making a sale."
That's the best bike shop in the Twin Cities.bnlkid
Aug 13, 2002 6:24 AM
I saw the Kelme bike there a little over a month ago and thought about how nice that might be to ride. I went a different route instead.

I also like the bike shop you are referring to. Where else can you pay $5 an hour to use their shop and tools to work on your bike. Great people, great products, almost everything in stock. The only problem is the location. Not the best part of town, but also not the worst. I will be looking for you on the Look.(did/do you ride a purple Klein?)
That's the best bike shop in the Twin Cities.filtersweep
Aug 13, 2002 6:59 AM
gs6769 rides the purple Klein- I had a yellow Trek. What are you riding? It is a trip trying to identify posters on the road...

The location? There IS a parking lot, and it is just a few blocks from River Road, so there is a decent place to test ride (at least some hills). I live downtown, so the location is nearby.
Aug 13, 2002 7:13 AM
I'm often amazed when I leave the shop. You won't find a more enthusiastic staff, or more knowledgeable. Very little MTB/roadie attitude stuff. I get the impression that the wrenches and sales staff like to talk 'road' sometimes since a lot of their customers are 'civilians'. At the same time, they're in no way snotty to someone who comes in for a new tube for the commuter bike. Always glad to steer business their way. Great to know it worked out well for you filtersweep!

Yup, purple Klein's mine. I'd also be interested to know your ride bnlkid.
That's the best bike shop in the Twin Cities.PMC
Aug 13, 2002 7:13 AM
I'll keep an eye out for you on the Look but I normally ride south of the river. I do venture into St Paul on occasion via the Smith high bridge and follow the Grand Ave hill up to Summit and on to the River Road. Lots of nice bikes over there. One ride I counted 3 Colnagos, 2 Cinelli and a few other rare steeds I don't remember.

If you see a guy on either a Purple Judd classic steel or a bright red Aegis Aro Svelte give me a shout.
S. of the river scenefiltersweep
Aug 13, 2002 7:21 AM
I was out in Apple Valley working my second job last week- there were tons of roadies on Pilot Knob Rd. north of Co rd 42... looked like a great road for riding- made me wonder how the other half lived. Long, wide suburban roads- not much traffic. I have a coworker who lives in Lakeville who says he gets harrassed by high schoolers when he rides... what are the realities of suburban riding down there?
S. of the river scenePMC
Aug 13, 2002 8:21 AM
Depending on what you ride, some of it is pretty nice. South Roberts out of downtown St Paul out to Rosemount is a nice little ride if you don't mind riding in heavy traffic until you get past 494. It's like you enter a whole different world at that point. Robert's or County Rd 3 as it becomes is a twisty and hilly country road that's great to ride on with a nice and wide shoulder. If you cut the ride a little short and take a right on Difley in Eagan, you get consecutive hills at up to an 8 % grade that really finish you off after 40+ miles.

I actually live in Bloomington not too far from the Old Cedar Bridge. I take the walking bridge under Highway 77 to cross the river and go from there. Most of the riding for the first few miles is fairly flat as long as you follow the river but you can work some hills into it if you venture off the river bottom.
Purple Judd?gs6769
Aug 13, 2002 7:51 AM
Did you post a photo in the gallery a while ago?
Purple Judd?PMC
Aug 13, 2002 8:22 AM
Yep, that was mine along with the Aegis posted the same day.
Purple Judd?gs6769
Aug 13, 2002 9:28 AM
Man, what a great looking cycle. When and where was Judd in business?

Tha Aegis ain't bad either!
Purple Judd?PMC
Aug 13, 2002 9:49 AM
Judd Cycles was located in St Paul just off of Jefferson St not too far from River Road. This really cool guy named Joe Judkins was kind of a one man show and did everything himself out of his basement shop. He stopped making frames a couple of year's back and had my frame just hanging on the wall in his shop. It's really too bad because the frame is as nice as they come. The guy is like an encyclopedia when it comes to frames and frame materials and was really fun to talk with. I hung out with him one afternoon in the basement shop and we talked for a few hours about everything bike related under the sun. It was really a fun afternoon and I ended up walking a way with a really great frame to boot!

If you're ever riding in the Eagan / Mendota / St Paul area and see it, flag me down and I'll let you check it out.
Purple Judd?gs6769
Aug 13, 2002 10:18 AM
What a cool thing. It's great to find people with 'the knowledge'. Sad to say that without some huge marketing plan, a single frame maker probably doesn't have much chance of survival business wise these days. One would hope he quit crafting for reasons other than economic ones though. He must have had some crazy basement!!

I'll keep an eye peeled out Mendota way.
Beautiful bike!bnlkid
Aug 13, 2002 11:49 AM
Hope to see it on the road soon!
Just satisfied my bike lust.bnlkid
Aug 13, 2002 8:25 AM
I recently received my Serotta Legend Ti compact in 1/2 big boy blue and half polish. It's the only bike I have been riding for the last week. You may have seen me on a Harlequin CSI or the black Giant TCR 0. I ride mostly in St. Paul and Mendota, but have a route that takes me out Cedar Lake to 169 and back Excelsior trail. I know I have seen the purple Klein a couple of times, but I don't recall seeing a yellow Trek. I will keep my eye out. Going try to get in 35 miles after work, but not sure which route to take. My favorite route right now is to go down summit(I live at Grand and Fairview in St. Paul) to the high bridge into west st. paul, down 13 across 35E and make a left at Victoria(short climb) and along the frontage road. That winds back to 13 and take a left and go under Mendota bridge and connect back with 13. Take 13 to Blackhawk road and work my way to the Old cedar bridge. Cross the river and connect with old shakapee and work my way over to Post road by the airport. Go thru Ft. Snelling up the West side of the Mississippi river and back home. It's about 35 miles and I can extend it by about 7 miles going out black dog road and back before crossing on Old Cedar.

The only reason I specified the location of the bike shop is due to the high rise, rent controlled apartments across the street. I would feel a little guilty walking out with a $4000 bike and seeing that apartment building, and knowing there are homeless people under the bridge on the other side. Other than that, it is really easy to get to(just a block from 94) and you can usually find a place to park in the lot.
Giant TCR 0gs6769
Aug 13, 2002 10:30 AM
I must have seen the Giant, it's ringing a bell. I quite like it over Mendota/Ft Snelling way. Lots cool loops to be found. IMO the roads are 10 times better throughout St Paul than they are in Mpls. Better maintenance? Less traffic? Better tax base? All I know is that I don't fear for my wheels as much is St Paul.
Aug 13, 2002 1:02 PM
I wish there were a database of routes. Maps, general riding conditions, amount of traffic control, amount of traffic, etc...

I need to figure out how to get to the Ft. Snelling area on bike. I usually end my loop at the falls- it seems W. River Rd. sort of fizzles out past the falls, but I think it is called something else at that point. I know there is a way, but I don't know where to go. Also, it has also been a pain with the construction on the Ford Bridge- taking the sidewalk sucks, and the road would be suicide right now. I finally discovered Sheppard Rd. a month or so ago.

The oddest thing is that my down and dirty after work loop through Minneapolis is a quick boring 25 miles that I can easily add more miles to through repetition, yet heading through the middle of nowhere to get to downtown St. Paul and back isn't even that far (just much further from home).
Aug 13, 2002 1:07 PM
Keep going on W. River Road and take a left at the roundabout(so you are heading south). At the end of that road as it turns toward Hiawatha, there is a path on the left hand side. You will probably see dogs, walkers, etc., but the path isn't really travelled that much. The dogs are only at the beginning. That path will take you down into Ft. Snelling park. Just stay on the path and continue roughly straight when come to any forks. Once you find the road, there is only one way to go and it climbs out of Ft. Snelling to post road. Hope this helps.
It's a disease.Len J
Aug 13, 2002 6:45 AM
"Hello, my name is _________ and I'm an addict"
12 Steps of Bike Buying"

1.)Admitted we were powerless over the effects of a new bike-that our current ride had become unridable
2.)Came to believe that a ride greater than our cureent ride could return us to sanity.
3.)Made a decision to turn our money over to the LBS
4.)Made a searching & fearless inventory of the weaknesses of our current ride
5.)Convinced our wives of the exact nature of these shortcomings.
6.)Were entirely ready to have our LBS replace all these defects with new technology.
7.)Humbly asked our LBS to relace these shortcomings.
8.)Made incessant lists of all the rational reasons why this new purchase was necessary
9.)Made direct arguments to anyone who would listen as to why this purchase was necessary.
10.)Continued to research in order to convince ourselves that we made a good decision while we wait for delivery.
11.)Sought thru contact with other like minded people, to reinforce what knowledgable consumers we are.
12.)Having commited to this purchase, we try to carry this message of salvation through consumption to anyone who will listen while we continually look for the next great bike.

Just admit you are powerless & get it over with. We are all working the program.

re: Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishesaliensporebomb
Aug 13, 2002 12:42 PM
I gotta tell you a true story that happened recently.

My wife works with a woman who is a real practical joker.
She's super cute, but almost evil in her jokesterism.

My wife was going on to her about how we were picking up my new bike, my first new bike in over four years and my first bike that was over $1,000.

Needless to say, the night before we went to the bike shop to pick it up I was going out of my skin. I couldn't sleep, I couldn't eat. I was a wreck.

Anyway, I managed to make it through the entire day's work
and was getting ready to head to the bike shop and got home to find this message on my voicemail:

"Hi, this is Penelope from the bike shop and we just
wanted to say that we know you were going to pick up
the Giant TCR2 today. We're sorry to say that there
was an accident at the shop and the frame got crushed. We're sorry but there won't be any more in your size for two weeks."

I sat there with my jaw hanging on the floor until I
realized......."PENELOPE?!?!?!?!" I checked the caller
ID and sure enough it was my wife's co-worker. EVIL!!?!?>!

My wife is like "Why are you white as a sheet?!?!?!?!" She
had no idea that her co-worker had done this either.

Needless to say I got the bike and all was well but I'm
trying to think of some kind of practical joke to pull on
"Penelope" (her real name is Sheri but I think the P name
will stick now....heh).
She sounds fun!bnlkid
Aug 13, 2002 12:58 PM
Is she single?

When I received the call that my new bike was going to be delivered for another week, after being told the previous week it was ready to ship, I went nuts. I couldn't sleep. I had trouble enjoying my current ride. I feel your pain. I would have loved to see the look on your face!
She sounds fun!PhatMatt
Aug 13, 2002 3:38 PM
I had mine pulled and held at the UPS office so I could pick it up on friday night. there was no way in hell I was going to let my bike sit in a warehouse until monday morning. Than I was late due to an acciden getting home I made it to the UPS counter 5 minutes to close, but left very happy with my new bike.
re: Bike Lust, Gear Envy, strange fetishesaliensporebomb
Aug 13, 2002 12:58 PM
Speaking of South of the River, a little further west there's a new pedestrian crossing where the old Ferry
Bridge was.

The path goes all the way to the highway 101 crossing.
If you follow that past the Union Pacific Valley Park
yard crossing you can head south all the way into
Shakopee, Prior Lake and points beyond.

Last summer on a 30 miler I ended up out of water just as
I rolled by chance into Prior Lake swimming beach. It was
great - very little traffic and a beautiful day. Refilled
water at the beach office and dipped my feet in the lake
for a bit.

There's one hell of a hill that connects the road from
Valley Park up to the Prior Lake area. I've hit 45+ mph
on that hill going down. Going up it's a nutbuster.

To the east about half way up the hill is Eagle Creek
boulevard which is flat as a pancake and goes all the
way into Shakopee near Canterbury Downs - a friend and
I were taking this the other night 18 mph clear and
easy and it was great.

And you can see any bad weather coming for miles - there
are no trees, just farm fields. It literally looks like
you're way out in the country. If you take it all the
way out you even pass a pig farm.

We had one doofus in a pickup truck honk and accelerate
but you could tell he was just a dork with a big truck.

We saw several other roadies taking this route so it must
be known....a Cannondale, a blue Colnago and another

Anyway, if anyone wants more specifics on this route let
me know. I live in Bloomington so I've sort of made it my
business to know all of these weird rides south of the
river since it's nearby.
Be Proud; You are a ConsumerChainstay
Aug 13, 2002 7:55 PM
You exercised your right to consume. Your desires have been stroked by beautiful machinery, clever marketers, fellow cyclists and dedicated bike shop junkies. You were manipulated just as your actions will be fed back into the system which will respond to help perfect the next experience. The capitalist system and the global economy thank you filtersweep. Your reward is their reward. Ride with joy.