Friday, June 5, 2009

Cool Randonneur Bag

This is a photo of Cecil Anne while she is on the first day, May 30, of the Oregon Randonneurs 600k XTR. You can view her Flickr album of 111 photos here.

For folks new to or curious about randonneuring, there’s a great deal to learn from this photo.

Randonneurs often:

1. Mount a handlebar randonneur bag setup as she does here instead of panniers or side bags. Reduces wind resistance, makes items available while riding, provides a convenient location for the cue sheet or route directions, and looks coooool.

2. Bring a rear bag on longer rides for tools, extra clothing, spare tubes/tire.

3. Provide full fenders and mudflaps since we ride no matter the weather. Riding behind a fenderless bike in the rain that sprays a constant stream of muddy water onto your glasses and lips is a big dragola. Fenders protect the rider’s shoes from drenching and also those around you. Most courteous.

4. Utilize generator powered lighting instead of batteries so that we always have light without the worrying over inadequate batteries. Dependable, powerful, and the accompanying headlight is retro cool.

5. Sit on leather saddles. Believe it or no, they are more comfortable than any others. And of course, they look so c………

6. Pedal lots of lowish gears so that we can get up the hills and mountains with all the junk I’ve just been describing. Most look down their noses at our plethora of cogs, but we’re too cool to care.

7. Ride on fat rubber. Wider tires grip better, are comfier, are not necessarily slower than skinny tires, and to some eyes are the cat's moustache. Nine out of ten folks think they look dorky, but they happen to be wrong.

8. Are thieves when it comes to nourishment. See how Cecilanne steals that poor farmer’s water. We’ve been known to raid cooling fruit pies sitting on window sills (just like in O Brother, Where Art Thou?). Fruited or nut-filled trees? Look out. Watermelons? Only if we can get them in our cool handlebar bags!

These are generalizations that comport with my preferences, but Cecilanne’s bicycle is tricked out very similar to how I envision my new ride.

Please visit Cecilanne’s album; she’s got pics of snakes, including a “pissed-off” rattler, a walrus (how many Walruses would one normally see on a bicycle ride? [In Googling the plural of Walrus {it is officially “Walruses”}, I discovered that there is an online petition to Merriam Webster asking him to change it officially to “Walri” due to their "majestic" nature]), and even mesmerizing, tattooed, cyclist legs!*

Keep it curious,


*I think I have an adult onset of some kind of parenthetical fetish. Love those parentheses (really!)!