Sunday, August 23, 2009

reasons why i hate the fixed gear movement

ive been behind handlebars since forever but the fixed gear movement is something that im pretty passionate about. yet, on the other hand i also have firm  opinions as to what i love and hate about this specific form of cycling. that said, i must express my feelings towards the cons of the fixed gear movement. please take into consideration that these are my opinions, and are not meant to be of any damage to anyone else's opinions, feeling or thoughts. with that, i'll begin.

1) cyclist haters (not haters of cyclists, cyclists who are haters)
wether it's the gu filled, spandex covered, gearhead roadie or the skinny jeans wearing, hesh bmx rider or the beer guzzling, mud washed mountain biker; the urban fixed gear rider doesnt stand a chance against their freewheeled counterparts. we're the underdogs now. we're the next big thing after mountain biking took off after the 70's in cupertino, CA. i know we seem threatening and stupid to other cyclist "genres" but we just want to be considered legitimate- and i see some progress. bike companies are now accomidating to the influx of interest, and ive seen alot of interest from hardcore cyclists towards fixed gear riding.

(via bikesnobnyc)

2) fixed gear abuse in marketing
levis did it. old navy did it. urban outfitters definately does it. because the perceived age group of fixed gear riders has become younger and younger, marketing targets that age group by utilizing fixed gear bikes in their ads. i hate it. it causes something i call empty interest (aka hypbeast syndrome) where a targeted group gains interest without doing research, which results in alot of posers who make the movement look bad. speaking of posers...

3) posers
no one likes a poser. if you have an urban fixed gear and you cant ride at least 7-10 miles without getting winded or start complaining or if you have a freestyle built fixed gear and cant skid or do any tricks, i'm not sure what youre doing on a fixed gear. now i know that's harsh but i'm serious ish, bikes are meant to be ridden, not to be a fashion statement. what's the use of a bike if it's not being used hard and proper?

4) dudes who think theyre hot sh*t because of their bike.
i dont care if you haz arrowspok. just shut up and f*cking ride with all the respect in the world. being young and feeling indestructable on a bike doesnt mean that you have to put down other people's bikes as well as other people. remember TRAkTION? remember "i wish all the posers would just stay away"? yeah that sh*t got pulled QUICK by all the blogs. look, i acknoledge posers, but still theyre on a bike and theyre keeping the cycling economy up (which is really really really awesome...did i mention really?) but unless you just pulled a 1080 onefooted barspin keo on your $1000 mashinelli, please i dont want to hear it.

5) the stereotype
i am not a hipster that listens to electro all day and chases steve aoki cross country like he's the grateful dead (though i can mix his music  because of dj experience). but at one time i had a sneaker obession, but i am not a hypebeast that buys things oblivious of it's story and does it to show off. i would never be caught running a converted frame or a red light. yes i run hi-flange hubs, but i do not run deep v's (yet. LAWL).  i have a pretty good downhill mtb background, and can strip a bike, clean it, grease the proper parts, and put it back together without employing help. i just dont want to be stereotyped for the kind of bike i ride.

before hype

after hype

6) the rate the movement is picking up speed (hype)
rewind to 2-3 years ago. only a handful of people knew what a fixed gear was. i was fortunate enough to live near hellyer and to have family who rode bikes so i knew what a track bike was. what i didnt know was that these things had a knack for street riding. today, alot of people know about fixed gears and true fixed gears (track drop outs, not really meant for track bikes) are becoming more and more readily available. when i copped my lager, no one really understood what it was. now there are a handful of bike companies that make complete urban fixed gear machines- most geared towards fixed freestyle (though i wish they made alot more streetable pursuit style bikes but that's my opinion). hell, my bike is being sold in chain stores (thank god i bought mine before that). the fixed gear is a rapidly growing phenomena and though im glad to see it grow im sad about the diminishing exclusivity.

7) the word fixie.
i feel like the word fixie is sort of a derrogatory word. the sound of it makes me want to sacrifice 20 goats in the pits of hell just to make it go away. it makes it sound like a toy or something an adolescent would have. i cringe at the sound of "fixie" escaping the realms of a strangers mouth when they ask me "is that a fixie?" sometimes i want to slap a hoe and say "the correct term is fixed gear, or urban track bike; not fixie" when i hear fixie, i think of all the track cyclist out there: those are not fixies, those are legitimate track bikes. i also think about bike bessengers who have utilized this form of cycling since forever: they dont consider their rides ad "fixies", they're just work bikes that are easy to maintain and keep their legs warm on cold rides. who the hell coined that term anyway? i'd like to give him or her a piece of my mind.

i love my bike, i really do. hell i wrote a pretty long entry because of it. but i hate certain aspects to the movement. again, these are my own opinion, but feel free to politely tell me off. i love a great discussion.


No comments: