Tuesday, December 25, 2012

happy whatever

happy whatever sending my best out to you and yours for whatever it is you do this time of year. may your days be filled with family, friends, and cheer.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

good-bye brown girl in the lane and welcome bikeSD

my philosophy on blogging is that there are no rules.  I am beholden to no-one, not even myself, really.   As such, one of my "goals" for this blog is to feature all the other bike blogs that I read and love.  suffice it to say little of that coverage has happened, but before the moment slips away forever, I want to recognize Samantha Ollinger (Sam) and her now defunct blog, brown girl in the lane.
brown girl in the lane I met up with Sam for a ride during a trip to SD in 2011
Sam is an articulate and brave cyclist with a wry sense of humor, dispatching from sad diego, my home town.  I call it sad diego, because I find it tragic that such a beautiful place was designed for cars not people.  My approach to cycling there, live somewhere else.   Sam's approach is far more courageous and elegant.  She went from writing a scathing, funny blog, brown girl in the lane, to launching BikeSD, a non-profit bike advocacy organization for San Diego.  I am so happy and proud to see her energy transformed into what is sure to amount to improved conditions for cyclists in San Diego and which could make it one of the best cycling cities in the world!   Kudos, Beany!  love, 1 of the 190

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

md MD

md is a med student that needs a bike.  in her cohort is jg,  an old classmate of mine. he got a bike from me this year and recently referred md my way.  she is 6 feet tall and has a vintage classic style.    sure enough my bike collection contained a large frame peugeot mixte, which I have dialed in and tuned up for ms. md, MD.  here she is.  the seat will be about 3 inches higher for md!
made in france
made in france
le drivetrain
drivetrain with shimano positron 5 speed shifting
she is a cafe racer with red cloth tape and wood/leather bar end plugs
maroon cloth tape
i threw on a us army saddle bag for holding stuff
we took this little french pony for a test ride today and she posed for the camera at UCSF, md's school.
md MD
overall we hope md thinks this bike is
real nice.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

farewell bianchi

this is my husband frida khalo
IMG_0932  this is frida in 2009 on the bianchi volpe he has been riding for the last 5 years, ever since his fuji bike was stolen from the lobby of our apartment building.  
the bianchi was stolen recently from behind a security gate, locked with a u-lock to a bike rack, outside of frida's office in the lovely media gulch neighborhood of the mission, sf, ca.   since the photo above, I installed honjo fenders and a VO porteur rack, which frida used to carry his basketball to games.   adios  fair friend.    I didn't sleep well last night, thinking about our lost friend, the bianchi. she was like a horse to us.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

design gone wrong

for more on this awfully contrived contraption, read the article on Core 77. In the meantime, watch the video below and don't let the preposterousness of the design of this "bike" (ha!) hurt you too much.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

guess my age

I am old enough to remember the original version of this song, an oldie, blasting out of the am radio in dad's maverick as a kid. I am young enough to resonate with the hipster girl and boy and old enough to laugh at their irony. how old am I?

Monday, August 13, 2012

bikes besties for life

please enjoy this lovely video of deep and kimberely's Sunday Streets wedding, from Claudia Escobar of Mission Local.

A Sunday Streets Wedding from Mission Local on Vimeo.

I especially love the sincerity of Kim's "I Do". I also love Claudia's videography. She is my video mentor and helped me make this very first ever video collab featuring Sarah Murder. Congrats, Deep and Kimberley!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

i am strong like ox

strong on plough here i am hauling the sfbc bike long trailer, loaded with 250lbs of food and liquid and glass.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Saturday, June 30, 2012


Bicycle CILO, Suiza  photo credit bilobicles bag
even in an advanced state of decay, bicycles are beautiful.

Friday, June 29, 2012

frances is built

ive been waiting for this bike for almost 3 years.  it is almost ready.  note to self: better build that fucking mercian, cause you will also need to build up frances soon.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

love like you've never been hurt before

please enjoy this video of the san francisco bike wedding of Greg and Mel.   Cry your eyes out and love like you've never been hurt before.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

mobile app: parking douche

i bet sf department of sidewalk parking would like to see the parking douche app at work in san pancho.

Monday, May 28, 2012

snoball makes modeling debut

I was checking the hours for birite market to see if they close early tonight. they don't close early and my bike (with a birite bag in the basket) is featured as one of the banner images on their website. modeling for birite

bike brains

not sure who to credit for this awesome graphic. if you know, please share. the quote reads, *the computer is like a bicycle for our brains*, but I prefer to interpret the meaning as, *bikes on brain*. I certainly do have them on mine.

Monday, May 21, 2012

feliz cinco de mayo

so i am a bit late for cinco de mayo, but that is okay.

pictured here snoball wears her newest paper flower, made from the tissue lining that wrapped a delicious bottle of patron silver.  this replaces the marigold she had been wearing since el dia de los muertos.

Friday, May 11, 2012

on the wiggle

my friend lawrence created this awesome pop jingle as a public service announcement for one of san francisco's best known bike lane secrets, the wiggle.  Snoball and Ramona are featured all over this video, can you see us?


back in the day before there were bike lanes, the wiggle was identifiable by riding from the intersection at duboce and church toward the panhandle- by always selecting the flattest direction of travel at each subsequent intersection. Now, as of yesterday, BTWD, the wiggle not only has a jingle with a video, it has has painted sharrows at Waller and Steiner,  one of the most controversial intersections on the route, to alert drivers that this is a bike route and to advise them of the cyclist's probable path

. Wiggle it
photo credit: caltexican

Great advocacy work, Lawrence (for the Wiggle PSA) and the Bike Coalition (for the sharrrows and bike lanes)!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Monday, May 7, 2012

Kick Start MamakSF

Editor's Note: There may be someone that reads this blog, but does not read Velo Vogue.  This cross post is for you! 

Ian Deleporte is an amazing member of the San Francisco bike community and the kind of guy that makes you just happy to be.   Combine his awesome personality with smarts, skills, and the flavors of a Malaysian heritage and you have mamakSF.    Watch the video to see Ian's plan for building a food cart bicycle, from which he will serve up Malaysian inspired foods like Toadies and Rojak, and then kickstart this awesome effort with a little collective love.

Want to taste first? You'll  be able to try mamakSF wares this Saturday, May 12 at the Public Bikes pop up shop grand opening party at 599 Valencia St. from 2-6.   MamakSF will be serving alongside Hot Bike and The Pop Nation, two other non-motorized mobile food businesses.

Saturday, May 5, 2012


a place where bikes decorate the homescape
porch bike
and streets are sprinkled with cherry blossoms

Friday, May 4, 2012

the cadillac of cycles, sort of

the idea of stationary cycling while riding in an SUV is just wrong on so many levels.  beware these pictures may give you nightmares, but you can see  more luxury SUV imagery here. 

Monday, April 30, 2012

a post in which i convey a message from one friend to another

step 1:  play video.  insert your name instead of rudy.

step 2:  look at this face

step3: receive message:  This is JustDave saying hi to YOU!

dear cyclists, cops are not your friends

i've heard it before, but the bias toward cars on the part of SFPD that I experienced today was shocking and frustrating nonetheless. 

image found on fb, if you know who deserves credit, speaks up.

 after being passed by an suv on fillmore this afternoon, I took the lane in front of said vehicle at the next stop light, to be safe from him trying to pass me again on the next block, post st, where I would turn left.    after taking the lane and signaling left, the car passed me on the right and stopped next to me at the red.  A motorcycle cop that was behind the suv (i thought the car driver would behave with a cop behind him!) then pulled up on my left at the light, and told me that I had to stay to the right of the lane.  I disagreed and he threatened me by asking if I wanted him to give me "a ticket so I could go to court and find out" if I was right about cyclists having full use of the lane.  of course I responded no, even though I knew I was right.   The cop also told me some other bull shit and expressed that because I took the lane, the car "had to pass me on the right",  which is illegal of course. Not to mention that he was "passing" me to stop at a red light right in fucking front of him.   Rather than engage with such an ignorant and biased man with a badge and a gun, I pulled over and proceeded in another direction while mouthing at him, "fucking pig", which he is among other expletives.    don't be fooled dear cyclists, sfpd are NOT your friends, indeed the truth is quite the contrary.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

building the mercian: wheels part I

i think an essential skill in bike mechanics is building wheels so I decided its time for me to learn. frankly, I am intimidated. while simple, its complicated, and after all, there are mechanics that are known for the integrity of their wheel builds.  Who am I?  I am a first timer, and just want to build some decent wheels and be dependent on no one.  I watched this video series and decided I could build a wheel.

To get started, I went down to Box Dog Bikes, the shop closest to my house, to pick up some parts. I had a set of record hubs, so I just needed rims and spokes. While I bought a set of rannondeur rims from BDB, I decided to not get spokes from them.  Besides the fact that Dan, who helped me, seemed completely unimpressed and unengaged when I talked to him about the wheel build, he quoted me $140 for spokes, uninstalled.  They cut their spokes to size, which means I would have had to wait a day to get the spokes, and the price was ridiculous.   I decided to find a shop where I could walk out with spokes, and hopefully where the person seemed half interested in my project.   Thanks for the nice rims, BDB.

gee wheels I called Pedal Revolution, they also cut spokes to size and their machine was broken.  No dice.

I called Valencia Cyclery and they carry different sized spokes and will measure the length for you if you bring in your rims and hubs, so I dropped in.  Michael helped me and was all I could ask for in a bike shop mechanic.  He was full of questions, to make sure I was legit; tips to make sure I was successful; and warnings to make sure I was realistic.   I was pretty scared after talking to him about taking on the project, but he sensed this and offered up encouragement. He calculated the spoke lengths for me, got me the right sizes, gave me some build tips and I was out the door for $65 with my  bike coalition discount.

Michael from Valencia Cyclery was awesome and interested, and even went to the retail shop next door to get me a spoke wrench, which I purchased along with the spokes and nipples.  You can't fake customer service and michael is the real deal.  Thank you! 

With spokes rims and hubs in hand, I laced up the wheels according to the video Part 2. Of note the video does not mention that you need three different lengths of spokes: 1 for front wheel, 2 for drive side of rear wheel, 3 rear wheel non-drive.  Michael told me at the shop.  I watched a few other videos and asked some questions of friends to assist in correct implementation.

I'll spare the boring details, but each wheel was laced two times, each for a different reason.  Lacing was easy and gratifying in an ocd kind of way.

lacing the wheel
The wheels are laced, tightened up, ready to be trued.  Truing is the hard part.  Coming soon.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

how to get to the top of potrero hill without climbing much

special thanks to dave who made this map for me a few years back and taught me the secret of crossing over the 18th St.  ped/bike bridge and wiggling up potrero hill, for a chill ride to the top. community garden information included. click the image to view LARGE.

Feria de las Pulgas Ciclísticas

Segunda Feria de las Pulgas Ciclísticas  bike swap meet in santiago chile.  anda.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

this is san francisco: the outside lands

golden gate park is in fact a gateway to the pacific ocean running west through san francisco. the 3 mile park was planted with hundreds of thousands of trees to create a root structure that would stabilize the natural sand dune topography of the area, once known as the outside lands. Now this route is all park and then ocean.
  green means go
bicycle and pedestrian signal at panhandle and masonic. watch out for cars running their red arrow when you have the green.
as you cruise the panhandle bike path be aware of hippies, dogs, and other road users. P1050341
westward toward the ocean
on sundays without cars
tall boy
All the way to the mighty pacific
where the great highway should be the boardwalk.
san francisco love.

This post is a collablogorative effort to showcase San Francisco neighborhoods. Sister posts can be found at Velo Vogue and Change Your Life Ride a Bike.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Monday, April 9, 2012

building the mercian: bottom bracket and cranks

back in november 2010, i bought a mercian frame and fork set at the bike expo and offered that I would blog about the project here. For those of you that have been waiting 1.5 years for me to start this project, I apologize. for those of you psyched to join the adventure of building a bike, i welcome you. This will be a chronicle in mechanics, tools, parts, and challenges and stereotypes specific to women cyclists.

Let me state for the record that I AM the family mechanic, and can do most bike repairs myself. I have a stand and tools and a well researched base of knowledge. I have street credibility from "building" snoball, although all I really did with her was pick every part and have a shop put it together for me. this time I want to employ my skills, learn, and advance to the next level in cyclist clout. I will do as much of the work myself as is reasonable. I plan to assemble, adjust, and then have an expert fine tune.


For those of you faint of heart, please be aware that I fully expect that this project will not be easy and out the gate it already is not, but challenges are for overcoming! the headset was already in place when I bought the bike and so here begins the rest of the process:

Step 1- bottom bracket. my son greg gave me a campagnolo bottom bracket to use for the mercian. I wanted him to give it to me and to lend me the tool, but he told me it would be risky for me to self install. so I let him do it, but was a little frustrated because many times in my life men have actually taken the tools from my hands when I am doing repairs in their valiant efforts to do what is stereotypically a man's work. phhh. I let him do it anyway because I really didn't want to fuck up my new frame and figured I could concede when it makes sense.

Step 2- crank. I had a set of campy cranks and this time the tool i needed was an allen wrench. easy! turns out the size was uncommon so i had to borrow the allen key to install the cranks. that was a cinch.

Stay tuned for the next step, building the wheels!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Fixie Boy

another sweet san francisco bike video. epic lyrics. *its a shame you're bipedal, riding cars should be illegal. one speed one love no gears no fears*

Sunday, March 25, 2012

two hander panda

two hander panda
me at sunday streets two handed. below, one hand on the camera, one hand as proof of danger. wind in hair.
dirty fingernail panda