Rock The Bike: BLOG

Three different varieties of B17 Brooks Saddles now in stock

Feb 8, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

Snapped this shot of the Special Edition Honey B17 on my way home last night. The ‘Special Edition’ refers to the large hammered copper rivets that hold the leather to the saddle’s steel sub structure.

Rock the Bike has been selling Brooks Saddles since 2006, and we had the honor of being the second winner of their photo contest last spring:

Fossil Fool, the bike rapper, on Brooks Saddle home page

We have three variety of Brooks’ popular B17 in stock: Black, Honey, and Special Edition Honey.

Once again, here’s why you should ride a Brooks B17:

  • After a short, tolerable break-in period, it wil be the most comfortable saddle you’ve saddled up to.
  • It’s better for issues of bloodflow than narrower, more racy saddles, because it’s wide enough to support your sit bones, and it breaks in to your anatomy
  • It’s made of leather, which is cow skin, which is infinitely more breathable than foam rubber. Leather saddles are cooler in hot weather.
  • It lasts and lasts. The one on the red bike above might be two months or two years old.
  • Style, legacy


Here’s a standard edition B17 that I happened to spot on the way home last night:

Notice that the rivets that hold the saddle together are smaller and silver in color. Other than this, there is no difference between Special Edition and standard B17 saddles.

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SF Cruisers on Clif Bar home page

Feb 8, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

Clif Bar has posted a groovy 4-minute video of the SF Cruisers in action, shot last September. Look for “Soul Ride” on their home page.

Rock The Bike on Clif Bar home page

Clif has been working on bringing everyday cycling into their bicycle advocacy work. Their 2-Mile Challenge Tour promotes the concept of biking and walking within one’s ’2-Mile Radius’. Here’s the YouTube version of the same video, shot by Paul McKensie.

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Defining Bike Culture

Feb 5, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

A friend told me he had used the Rock The Bike web site to help a co-worker understand what bike culture is. That got me thinking, what is bike culture? I looked on Wikipedia and was unsatisfied by the old Bike Culture entry, so I wrote a description and updated the Wikipedia entry. What do you think? Comment here or update the Wikipedia entry.

Bicycle culture

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Bike culture is a set of art, music, and community events offered by passionate bicyclists seeking to inspire beginners, rally the faithful, and express their love of bicycling as a life choice.

Those who have made bicycling a lifestyle choice, not a mere recreational habit, often see see bicycling as a movement they want to help grow. There are several paths people use to convince others to try biking: Practical improvements, Logic and Facts, and Bike Culture.

Practical Improvements include measures at the level of local government, such as bike lanes , improved parking facilities, and access to public transportation, as a well as products that improve the bicycling experience, such as flat-resistant tires and simple, effective safety products. These techniques help address the common objections to bicycling: “I don’t feel safe”, “my tires are flat”, “what if my bike gets stolen?”

The path of Logic and Facts seeks to convince and ground the decision to ride bikes at the logic level. Examples of Facts include: “Bicycling helps you integrate exercise into your daily life, which is something you need anyway,” “Bicycling is an important way to reduce your personal impact on Global Warming,” and “Bicycling makes our cities more liveable by reducing traffic and improving community interactions.”

Facts, strong as they may be, enter the brain and park themselves in the repository of facts. And while we may call facts to ground and rationalize decisions, only our emotions can bring us the point of making changes in our daily habits and lives. Bike Culture accesses these feelings directly, through music and art and through group rides and events.

Recognizing that bicycling for transportation represents a significant departure from a more established automobile-centered how-to-live archetype, and therefore requires a strong emotional basis, Bike Culture artists, musicians, and organizers seeks to use their offerings and events to embolden these emotions, and push people farther along in their own personal transformations.

Bike culture consists of:

  • Bike Music
  • Bike Film
  • Bike Rides, often noncompetitive in nature. Includes Critical Mass, Midnight Ridazz (more info below).
  • Art Bikes, often impractical for transportation purposes or fantastical, such as tall bikes, choppers, unusual multi-person human-powered vehicles, and human powered floats.
  • Printed word: Blogs, haikus, zines and magazines, stickers, spoke cards. Books include: Thomas Stevens with his narrative “Around the World on a Bicycle,” Mark Twain with his essay “Taming the Bicycle” and H. G. Wells with his novel The Wheels of Chance were early contributors to bicycle culture.
  • Spoken word: Slang, rap, poetry
  • Arts and Crafts (both handmade and mass manufactured): An example of visual art is Mona Caron‘s Bike Mural.

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That’s like 8 bags I didn’t bring into existence.

Feb 3, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

Lately I’ve been carrying sturdy plastic bags with me to waterproof my Xtracycle.

So when I headed to the market to buy supplies for Bike Blended Smoothies on a rainy night in SF this past weekend, I just grabbed the bag I had with me.

As I went through the produce section, I started putting all the separate fruits in their own bags, which I then would put in my basket. Then I started thinking, “so many bags”. So I just put everything in my sturdy plastic bag, as an experiment. It all made it back fine to my place, though checking out took a little longer than usual.

1 bag not 9

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Murray Neil’s combined passions: Bikes, Kites, Community

Feb 1, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

bikes and kites

One of our Flickr friends, Murray Neil, a New Zealand bike culture head and Xtracycle rider, combines his love of photography, kites, and biking in his crystal clear aerial shots. He fabricated his own kite-based aerial photography rig and uses the photographs to document, among other things, which bike lanes he finds effective and which intersections still need work. In the photo above, Neil can be seen as a tiny dark blue figure in the sand to the left of the bridge on the far side of the river. You can even see the faint line of the kite’s string. Even cooler, the red and white object halfway across the bridge is his friend Ted, who had seen his kite line and biked over to say “hi.”

Unlike airplane based aerial photography, Neil’s is quiet, cheap, beautiful, and non-polluting. Now that’s community.


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Bike Commuter from Seattle posts an extremely safe rig on Flickr

Jan 25, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

RJL20 is one of our Flickr friends. I saw his picture of his Xtracycle commuter rig this morning.

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Cruise to Malamana Show at El Rincon Saturday Night

Jan 25, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

Posted by fossilfool
01/26/2008 – 02:52

Malamana shredded it tonight with Afrolicious at the Elbo Room.

Weather permitting — Let’s gather at my place at 9 and ride to the show together.

935 York St. is the starting point.


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The last tandem I’d ever think to build

Jan 23, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

In the back to back tandem, riders face away from each other for an aero position. It’s pretty much the opposite of social biking

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If only they got that excited over actual bicycles

Jan 23, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

OK, so apparently there’s a little YouTube trend called the Human Bicycle. Here’s one of the more humorous ones:

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‘Bike Around the Clock’ Fabulous 50′s Ride

Jan 22, 2008Posted by in Blog | Comments Off

Posted by Wild Johnny
02/15/2008 – 20:15
“Bike Around the Clock” Fabulous 50’s Ride – Feb 15th, 2008
w/the Southbay Cruisers

We are excited to announce this 10 – 12 mile ride over mostly flat terrain which will start and end in front of:

The Lighthouse Cafe
30 Pier Avenue
Hermosa Beach, CA 90254

We will meet at 8:15PM/Ride at 8:30PM SHARP-RAIN or SHINE.

Get in touch with your inner howl, as you sing and dance to your favorite 50’s tunes with us late at night on our bike ride through the
Southbay. We will have at least one bike stereo for the ride as well as our Southbay Cruiser Karaoke set up – bring your ipods to karaoke
to your favorite songs. We encourage you to dress 50′s for this ride. Show us your late night howl- and show us your
50′s dance moves too!

For more info see our website at

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