Saturday, February 20, 2010

I must away...again...

Hey kids....It seems that due to an obligation of my day job, I have to go out of town for the next week.  I will be back with regular updates once again on Monday, March 1.  Until then, feel free to contemplate this story in cycling news.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.....

Pedal on!  See you in a week - 


Friday, February 19, 2010

PooBah: Not quitting my day job and not denying 'anti-doping'

Yes, yes....all 12 of you who were waiting to read today's post while eating your tuna-salad over your lunch hour were probably greatly disappointed in the fact that this afternoon's installment is coming so late in the day.  And for this, all I can say is tough titty - when GoogleAds start cutting me a fat check to serve up this slop, then maybe I will get the stuff out on time I'm really sorry.  As both cyclist and blogger, Andy Shleck said it best in his very own blog today in repsone to Pozzato attmpeting to become a cyclist-blogger:
"The world of blogging...isn't as easy as everyone in the press makes out.  All I'm saying is don't quit your day job.  Stick to cycling, chest waxing and fast cars."

Despite the fact that Schleck wasn't talking about me, I've decided to take his advice as well.  Especially in the chest-waxing department because mine's gotten a little out of control lately.  According to the following chart depicting male typical abdominal hair patterns, I'm somewhere between 'acuminate' and 'disperse'.
However, since I have little tolerance to pain, and therefore cannot get a tattoo in the style of many cyclists like Pozzato, I'm going to try some selective shaving patterns, as I think chest shaving will be the chest tattoo 2.0:

But I digress.  The reason today's post is 1) not Friday mail, and 2) horribly late is because certain events occured in the sporting world recently which have sent the entire COMO CYCO staff reeling, and we are trying to make sense of it all.  No, I'm not referring to the Tiger Woods apology video in which a Disney animatronic wax figure appearing just like Tiger stood behing a podium today to make some statement about something or other.
I don't know what he was talking about because I kept getting distracted by trying to comprehend all the intricate machinations that must go into making these humanoids walk and move.  And just like in the Hall of American Presidents, the Tiger robot seemed so life-like that it was actually quite creepy.
No, what I'm speaking of was last evening's broadcast of Larry King Live on CNN which featured Priscilla Presley and Quentin Tarantino.  Oh...and also Floyd Landis.  By now, everyone has heard that a French judge has issued a warrant for Landis' arrest should he enter France for alleged computer hacking.  Well Floyd went on Larry King last night to make his side known on the subject of illegal computer tampering, and Larry cut right to the heart of the issue with his first question, reprinted here from the transcript made available at CNN.
King:  "First, quickly, Floyd, do you feel any kinship with Tiger Woods being a celebrity in the public spotlight, even though he's not under a warrant?"

It's in this first question that King shows just why he is, in fact, the king of television interviewing.  What a logical connection to draw between the two individuals....because they are both athletes, of course, they must understand what it feels like to be in one another's shoes right now.  All I can say is that it's a good thing Tiger didn't field questions during his statement today, because I'm sure the first question asked would have been, "Tiger, first, do you feel any kinship to Floyd being a celebrity in the spotlight even though he's not slept with half of Orange Country, Florida?"

Next, King dips into an old bag of interviewing tricks known as the 'Abbot and Costello' in which he attempts to catch Landis in a "Who's on first" shtick by confusing him.....

King: "Why haven't you replied [to the summons to appear before a French judge], Floyd?"
Landis: "I've never been contacted."
King:  "You've never been contacted?"
Landis: "Just - no.  I've never been served any sort of warrant.  This is all news to me."
King: "So you're replying tonight by saying you didn't do any anti-doping, right?"
Landis: "I did not do [computer] hacking!"

Cleary King tried to use the old double-negative ploy in getting Floyd to admit he didn't "anti-dope", therefore suggesting he did dope if he denies not-doping.  Wait - I'm confused....anyway, King goes on....

King: Simply put, Floyd, why don't you just go to Paris, answer the warrant? Have you received the warrant?
Landis: "That's what I'm trying to tell you."
King: "No."
Landis: "No, I haven't received anything."
King: "You haven't received anything?"
Landis: "No."

They say that the only advantage to Alzheimer's is that you get to make new friends every single day.  I suppose in the case of Larry King, it means you get to hear new answers to the same question no matter how many times you ask it.

Maybe I could be so lucky and forget I actually spent the time to listen to the pointless interview at all. 

Pedal on!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

French Injustices: Sour grapes or something more?

I was recently reading one of my favorite cycling blogs (far superior to this one), and came upon a quoted passage that the blog's author used from another blogging cyclist by the name of Jacquie Phelan regarding the Bicycle Bond.  I too would like to reference this quote, and fully recognize Dr. Dan for bringing it to the surface...

"The Bicycle Bond, one of the strongest known, derives its power from the inescapable fact that riding turns the rider into a 'Zealot'.  If the rider is already a 'Zealot', then they become a 'Major Pain in the Butt Zealot', the kind of person that attempts to create links from cycling to any other subject of conversation that might come up...."

Much like Dr. Dan confesses, I too, am guilty as charged, likely to an astonishingly high and irritating level, especially to those non-cyclists I share company with.  My only criticism with this explanation as it applies to me alone, is that what Ms. Phelan considers a 'zealot', (implying fanatic obsession), I would call a 'nerd' (implying a fanatic obsession with lack of common sense or ability.)  Granted, I am a nerd about many things, but only impart the cycling-related items for this particular blog.  (Perhaps after I retire someday I will start a blog about my California raisin figurine collection). 

And speaking of being a bike nerd, and California raisins, it is with the spirit of my cycling-related nerdom that I'm guilty of purchasing certain items that possess cycling-related themes.  Such as wine.  This one in particular:

Thus, I was pretty upset when I read in the NY Times today that in France, "a dozen wine producers and traders were found guilty of having supplied an American trader with mislabeled "Pinot Noir" wines", resulting in some cheap French wine being passed off as a Pinot which California trader E. & J. Gallo purchased for its Red Bicyclette Pinot Noir line.  Now, I'm not upset that I paid $8.99 for a bottle of crap, but rather that I upon occasion have spun said crap around a wine glass, studied its legs, dipped my nose deep into the globe to draw in the rich bouquet and then tasted the savory liquid, swishing it around my mouth to let its full bodied-flavor express its intracies only to then exclaim, "hmmmmm that's nice."  To be honest, I wouldn't know a Pinot if it crawled up my pantleg and tapped upon my testicles with a ball peen hammer.  I merely thought it was tastey because I liked the little red bike on the label.  But now I find out that I might as well have been drinking swill from a winery spittoon like Miles in the movie Sideways.

I might be wrong, but I think this is just the latest attempt by the French to stick it to American cycling culture.  First they covertly inplanted a French man into our society to become a cycling legend only to have him later intentionally flake out and try to bring down not only one of America's premier cycling companies (Trek) but also to defame our greatest cyclists....Is this not strangely reminscent of the plot of the Manchurian Candidate?
They didn't even bother giving him an American name!

Next they engineered that crazy-ass French-threaded bottom bracket to make it ultimately maddening for millions of hipsters to outfit late 70's Peugeot frames into fixies.  Most recently some French drug lab-techie decided to surf a website titled Shaving Ryan's Privates from his work computer and let a Trojan Horse virus infect it, and then tried to pass the whole thing off on Floyd who's left trying to find work holding the "Quiet Please" sign at the Torrey Pines golf course!

I would say this series of events smacks of sour grapes on the part of the French if it weren't for the fact that they've apparently been making me acutally drink their sour grapes for the better part of a year now!  And why would their attitudes be so bitter one may ask?  Despite being the host to the greatest of the Grand Tours, in 2009, France ranked 12th on the UCI's world rankings.  In an attempt to thwart continued French threats against American cycling, I think it is wise to determine causality behind the recent decline in French cycling.  I've put our intern Ricky on this project, and this is what he's come up with.

According to Ricky's data, 5% of current French suckiness is because of Thomas Voeckler's recent growth spurt, which has caused his power-to-weight ratio to suffer, thus rendering him unable to do the big climbs of the grand tours.
However,  6% of recent French suck-itude has to do with the fact that Bernard Hinault is suffering from chronic hemorrhoids from too many years in the saddle, which has made "The Badger" grumpy, thus resulting in a general bad attitude on the part of French pro cyclists.
A significant 10% of French suckness is attributed to years of poor cyclist nickname selection which tends to focus on ridiculous double syllable alliterative names .  Examples include DuDu (Jacky Durand) DeDe (Andre Darrigade) Cri-Cri (Calude Criquielion) and JaJa (Laurent Jalabert).

But a whopping 79% of the French decline into suckville has now been linked with helmet useage. See below.
As advancements and cycling rules have resulted in more complete head coverage in racing, the performance of French cyclists has steadily declined.  Long gone are the headgear-free racing days of Hinault when last the French won the Tour de France (1985).  It is possible that the cranial circumference of French citizens has outgrown standard and commercially available cycling helmets, thus leaving them uncomfortably tight and resulting in poorer racing performance.  But the issue could be less of appropriate size, and one more of inappropriate style which is why starting this year, all French cyclists will adorn their heads with this in an attempt to improve race results.
Let's hope this straightens them out so I can go back to believing the cheap shit I'm drinking is something a little better.

Pedal on!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Filippo Pozzato: Baring it like Beckham

Those readers of cyclingnews are probably familiar with the blogs and diaries the website features written by some well known (and no-so-well-known) cyclists including Andy Shleck, Taylor Phinney, Liz Hatch and David Millar to name a few.  Today, however, they published the first blog entry of Filippo Pozzato, the Italian National Road Race Champion who was Tom Boonen's "shadow" at last year's Paris-Roubaix.

In this inaugural posting, Filippo says,

"I know that some people think I'm the David Beckham of the peloton......he's proved he's a great athlete as well as a global sports star."
It appears as though Pozzato has taken quite the shine to Becks and is attempting to emulate him in many ways, most notably by going shirtless as much as possible.  His first blog entry is titled "Only God can judge me" which is so named because of the new tattoo on his back which he proudly demonstrated in true Beckham fashion at the recent Tour of Qatar.
But what baffled the 3 or 4 fans who actually gave a shit about his tattoo, was the indiscernible scrawled design work below the deity-empowered phrase.  Perhaps some thought there were hidden symbols in the inkwork, that would lead the astute viewer to a biblical secret in the style of Dan Brown, but alas, thanks to his blog posting, we now know that Pozzato is not carrying some lost symbol of an ancient God-fearing society, but rather....

"in the middle of having a huge carp done, because in eastern culture it's a fish that's supposed to bring good luck."

So divinity is left to judge, but cycling fish are sought for good fortune.  Well, it certainly worked for Guinness.

If Pozzato really wanted to emulate his footballing counterpart, however, one would have thought that he would have had an angel tattooed upon his spine like Beckham, instead of a carp.
Instead, Pozzato wanted to keep his Beckster iconography closer to his core by having a similar image emblazened upon his saddle, only with the phrase "Blonde Angel."
One can only assume that because of his own golden-locks, Pozzato is referring to himself as such.  Of course, nestling an angel (even a falsely-idolizing blonde angel fashioned to resemble oneself) so close to one's taint might be considered sacrilegious, especially on this of all days, Ash Wednesday.  There does appear to be some evidence, however that Pozzato has repented and sought forgiveness for his cycling sins, by the recent appearance of an ash-smeared face....
as well as welts across his pre-tattooed back, clearly obtained through repentent self-flagellation (although he claims these were actually incurred during a hailstorm during the 2007 Tour de Switzerland.)
This, if nothing else, should demonstrate that Pozzato is his God Carp's humble servant and knows how to keep his modest feet on the ground.....or on his handlebars....or wrapped around his girlfriends face.....whatever.
Pedal on!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Valentine's Day: balls, brows and chickens....

A couple of days after Valentine's Day, and I feel I've been remiss for not even mentioning that most special of days here.  Of course, this day has significance in the world of cycling for several reasons, only one of which being the anniverary of Marco Pantani's death.  Aside from that, many think of Valentine's Day merely as one created by the card, candy and flower industries to make money...and that may very well be.  However, who can deny the special feeling one gets when given a Valentine's-themed special message of affection.  Take the tin of candy hearts I received in the mail yesterday from an anonymous reader who has obviously ridden with me at some point:
Reading these messages rang with such truth and clarity that it almost felt like it was summer again and I was at Thursday Night sprints.  Perhaps I'm not alone this Valentine's day in having bad memories conjured up as Portland, Oregon used the occasion to host its "Worst Day of the Year Ride."  As one would expect, photographs of the occasion depict Oregonian cyclists in full cupid and heart-related garb.  And apparently, so blessed is the Portland cycling community that their excrement is without odor such that their port-o-potties can be named "Honey Buckets."
I'm sure my constant ribbing of Portland must smack of envy to some, and if so I apologize. For we in COMO-ville should also feel blessed, which is the exact emotion I experienced while reading about the new Krankcycle fitness machine that was recently added to the local Wilson's Gym.
According to an article in the Columbia Tribune, "....the Krankcycle is designed to combine cardio with upper-body strength training," and thus, "It's an ideal cross-training workout for runners or cyclists who are trying to increase their cardiovascular fitness without overtraining their lower bodies."  The benefits of this machine are apparently multifactorial:
"The face of the Krankcycle flips over, and the saddle seat is removable, so users can add challenge to the their workouts by standing on BOSU trainers or sitting on Swiss balls."

I can't say for sure, but I think the challenge added by this seating arrangement would likely be more stringently felt by the Swiss man whose balls I was sitting on while Krank-cycling.  Especially if they were this Swiss guy's balls.
Curious about the Krankcycle, I checked out their website, and discovered that this machine is made by someone by the name of 'Johnny G'.  Apparently, he has a robot army of incredibly (and irritatingly happy)buff individuals that are so indoctrinated into the Johnny G. mantra of fitness, that each has the company logo branded on their lower abdomen.
Such is the dedication some have for their fitness and sport.  And speaking of dedication, who can doubt professional cyclist Michale Rasmussen's as he has declared he will actually give up his Danish citizenship and become Mexican to allow him to ride in the World Championships in Denmark in 2011 since the Danish Cycling Federation has stated that it will not nominate him to the national team.  Currently riding for Mexican Team Miche, Rasmussen (aka "the Chicken") has publicly stated his disappointment with the low-ranking status of his team, and not just over jealously that his teammate, Edwin Carvajal, is the reigning world champion in the Men's Unibrow.
His simultaneous disapproval of his current contract and eagerness to win the favors of a larger, European squad didn't stop Rasmussen from dropping out of the Tour Mediterranean last week, however, due to the cold weather.  I guess once a chicken, always a chicken.
Pedal on!

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Lanterne Rouge....making peace with your knechtenrol.

After a week at the conference in Walla Walla, I'm happy to report that the COMO CYCO blog came in 108th place out of 109 entries in the Blogger's Organization for Online Bicyclists (BOOB) Best Cycling Blog of 2009 competition.  You may wonder why I'm so excited about coming in next to last.  In short, the placement appeals to me because it essentially mirrors the result of many of my races.  Prior to any given race, the first thing I do is ensure that the organizers have not formed an additional Cat 6 classification that I could enter comprised of recumbants, cargo bikes, and cyclists towing Shih Tzu's in Burley trailers.  If not, then I enter as a Cat 5 and start to hunt for the biggest, hairiest guy I can find wearing a Primal Wear Jersey....something like this if possible:
 As soon as the leaders drop me, I find my rotund target wearing the 'Organ Grinder' jersey and wheelsuck him for the remainder of the race, only to attempt to pimp him at the finish line to avoid the lanterne rougeAt the conference, the blogging equivalent to my big boy in the Primal Wear was the blog entitled:  Andy Shleck: best bike racer in the universe.  Easy pickings despite them having twice as many followers than we do because everybody already knows that  former World Champion Paolo Bettini is actually the best bike racer in the universe, and not Andy Shleck, ever since Bettini started flossing his taint with a piece of wood.
But I mention the lanterne rouge as though it were a bad word.  In reality, the designation of 'last place' can be a coveted titled that some, it would seem, actually seek out.  Take Belgian cyclist Wim Vansevenant who raced for Silence Lotto from 2003-2008.  He distinguished himself as being the only cyclist to have finished the Tour de France in last place three times.  And he did so in consecutive years....2006, 2007 and 2008. 
In seeking out some additional information I stumbled upon his official page on the Silence Lotto team website from 2008.  His bio was written in Dutch, which I had translated into English with the help of Google Translator.  Regarding his status as bearer of the lantern rouge, this is what the translated biopic stated.

"Vansevenant may at a first meeting happened earlier cold and indifferent.  Yet appearances can not deceive in his case.  Vansevenant has peace with his knechtenrol.  It is a role as one another and also not to underestimate driving holes closed, bottles get, get on a mountain, the wind driving the pitfalls of the course decipher.  Few developed zoeen mastery in this role as Vansevenant."

Last place or not, how many of us can say we've made peace with our "knechtenrol?"

At any rate, it's good to be home once again.  Although there is no cycling in the winter Olympics, I have to admit being captivated by the proceedings therein.  However, like many probably were, I was quite disturbed by one thing during the Olympic coverage this past weekend:  Bob Costas' hair.
I'm not sure if this is a hairpiece, or an extra-liberal use of some Grecian forumula, but something ain't right.  Perhaps it's the pressure that a commentator on a major network feels to continue to look young.  I guess we should consider ourselves lucky that NBC doesn't carry cycling.  Can you image what they would do to poor Phil Liggett?

Pedal on!

Friday, February 12, 2010

CC Film Fest Day 5

COMO CYCO Film Fest Day 5

Today is the fifth and final day of the 2010 COMO CYCO Film Festival.  I wish I could tell you that bringing these movies to you has been a joy, but in all honesty, it's made me realize how old I am.  Today's flick is no exception.  But before I announce the final Feature Film presentation I probably need to preemptively quiet some grumbling that is no doubt about to occur.  I know I don't have A Sunday in Hell, or Overcoming, or The Bicycle Thief, or Hell on Wheels or the Road to Roubaix on the list this time.....but......this list wasn't generated necessarily on the informative or accurate depiction of cycling, but rather the entertainment value....which sometimes means the enjoyment one gets from watching a bad movie (especially if it involves nudity).

But what I do offer you on this final day of the Festival is my personal favorite cycling movie:  Breaking Away (1979). Tomatometer: 94% (ka-POW!).  Centering on the real-life Little 500 bicycle race held at Indiana University every year, this film stars Dennis Christopher as Dave Stohler....who used to be as normal as pumpkin pie....

And finally, to appease those grumbling about the absence of some Triplettes....

Pedal on!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

CC Film Fest Day 4

COMO CYCO Film Festival Day 4
You know, I've been thinking....if this thing takes off - maybe next year I will try to rent out the Missouri Theatre for a weekend and do it up right.  Everyone would have to bring their own Snuggies though, because God only knows what would be going on under those things during the flicks.....

Anyway...Today's theme is 'Flying'......

And today's Feature Film is: The Flying Scotsman (2007).  Tomatometer: 51%.  Starring Jonny Lee Miller as Graeme Obee in his real-life pursuit of the hour record on a bike he makes himself out of spare parts.

And sticking with the 'flying' theme, I bring you your Sweet Short Film of the day, titled "Lucky Bigwheel Jump."  Now, I realize that technically speaking, this guy is not on a bike.  However....I dare you to try to only watch this video one time....

Fly on!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

CC Film Fest, Day 3


Welcome back, cycling filmsters....I hope you are enjoying this film fest more than I'm enjoying my conference.  Right about now I'm sitting through another boring lecture on "Cycling Blog Management, The Art of Monetizing" while you get to watch more cycling movies.  I hope you realize how lucky you are!

Ok - let's get to it.  Today's theme is 'the rough and tumble life of the roadie' or what could also have been called 'the power of the moustache....;

Our Feature Film of the day is none other than American Flyers (1985). (Yeah - you knew you were waiting for this one....well here it is!)  Tomatometer: 60% (REALLY?)  Starring Kevin "pre-tetonka" Costner sporting a nice porn-stache, Rae Dawn Chong, David Marshall Grant and Alexandra Paul...who may take her shirt off in this if memory serves......At any rate, the tag line is "They're four one-of-a-kind people taking a chance....and going after a dream that will change their lives forever."  My God, I wish movies today inspired such poetry.

Today's Sweet Short Film is brought to us by the Cycling Inquisition blog.  If you are not familiar with this blog, it truly is a must read.  At any rate, he brings to us a tale of professional cyclist Michel Zanoli who had some anger issues, and many years ago, punched American Davis Phinney in the nose during a sprint and gave him a Hitler moustache comprised of his own blood, which we see in this clip as Phinney tells Greg LeMond the whole sordid tale.

Don't let this happen to you.  If you are frustrated enough you want to give someone a Hitler moustache, just remember....who was the last person you saw with a Hitler moustache?  Exactly...Hitler.  And he was bad.  I know Charlie Chaplin had that moustache first, but Hitler had it last....and we don't need anymore like him.  So don't punch people.

Pedal on!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

CC Film Fest Day 2

Welcome Back to the COMO CYCO Film Festival, Day 2. 

Today, the theme is the freedom of the bike messenger....oh what a lucky fellow he is.......let's trade in our three piece suits for a ten speed and the streets.....let's no longer be separated from Kevin Bacon by six degrees....

Today's Feature Presentation Clip:  Quicksilver (1986).  Tomatometer: 8% (ouch)....(watch out for a skinny Laurence Fishburne and that cute brunette from that 80's TV show Square Pegs)...

Today's Sweet Short Film brings us a documentary of a truly epic messenger of the early 90's.....his name..."Special Ed"....he is a thrill-seeker, he is armored.....he is a thinker...he's a sperm dispenser....he's figuring out how to ride across an ocean......and look out ladies...he's available!

Pedal on!

Monday, February 8, 2010

CC Film Fest Day 1

Welcome to the COMO CYCO Film Fest, Day 1

Before we get started, I should say a few things.  First of all, there exists in our society, a great dearth of high quality cycling-related film.  I realize that this statement requires a disclaimer with some specified exclusion criteria for what I'm considering "high quality."

Exclusion criteria:
1) Any film featuring a fixed-gear riding club riding fixies from one city to another while trying to emote  epicness.  To those films I say this.  "You're riding a fixed gear bike between two cities.  Welcome to the year 1887.  It was necessary then, now it's not.  It was never epic.  Stop filming yourselves."
2) Any film by macaframa.
3) Any music video touted to be a short film which features Jared Leto or the Flaming Lips.
4) Any non-COMO themed rides (yes I'm biased - but I don't want to see anymore bare Portland asses or tweed rides.)
5) Any MASH film.
6) Any non Danny MacAskill trick bike film.

Secondly, I obviously cannot show you full length, or even truly "High Quality" bicycle films.  Come on....this is a cheap-ass blog.  I'm not even getting paid for this shit.  Therefore, each day I will give you the name and a clip for a cycling-related feature film and it's respective rating.  Then, you can leave your place of COMO CYCO readership, ride your sweet-ass Huffy down to the nearest Movie Gallery, rent said film, then ride to the store, load up on pork rinds, ride home, pop your movie into the DVD player, crawl into your Snuggie and pretend like you're in some campy art-cinema like RagTag.  After the clip for the feature film, I will give you another short film, full of cycling sweetness (or more-likely completely devoid of sweetness) of my choosing.

Today's theme is 'a cyclist wronged' and brings you two tales of love and loss of bicycles....

Today's Feature Film Trailer:  Beijing Bicycle (2002). PG-13.  Foreign.  Tomatometer: 62%

Today's Sweet short film:  Broken Pinky Promise:

Pedal on!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday Mail! BOOBs, Bananas and Film Festivals!

I have to start today with some late breaking news.  I have been called away to attend the third annual BOOB conference (Bloggers Organization for Online Bicyclists) next week.  At first, I didn't think I would be asked to attend, since registration is limited to those bicycle-realted blogs with more than 10 followers, but sometime this week, I picked up lucky #11 (thanks mystery Ryan!) which means I'm heading to Walla Walla, next week, baby!  Once there, the COMO CYCO blog will compete against other cycling blogs for the 2010 BOOB award, which could be incredibly exciting. 
I've long dreamt about getting to put this little baby up on the COMO CYCO mantle, right next to the empty GU gel packet I snagged off the roadside that Tom Zirbel may have discarded at the Tour of Missouri last year.  However, I don't want you to worry that I will leave you empty handed next week!  While I'm busy attending lectures on HTML and RSS and the like, you, dear readers, will get to attend the inaugural event of something special.  Inspired by the upcoming True False Film Festival that COMO hosts every year, I decided to assemble the First Annual COMO CYCO Film Festival and everyone is invited!  Yes, all you need to do is tune in each day next week for a new installment of some truly spectacular cycling-related film.  I hope you enjoy it!

And with that, I bring you this weeks mail!

Dear PooBah,
My bike was stolen last week.  I posted some signs around town hoping someone could provide some info.  Would you mind posting my sign on the COMO CYCO site?
Thanks -
Um....I don't know what happened to the bike itself, and I'm not quite sure how to tell you this, but I actually think I may have stolen the skull flag.  I couldn't help it.  I needed something to complete the ensemble I'm putting together with my new skin suit.  Sorry....send me your address and I will get a check in the mail.

Dear PooBah,
I'm trying to teach my 12 year old son how to ride a bike without the training wheels.  I walk along beside him and hold the saddle and guide him, but he is just so wobbly on the thing.  Do you have any suggestions?  I've attached a photo so that maybe you can show me if I'm doing something wrong.
Mike R.

Whoa, you do have your work cut out for you.  The lad is only 12, eh?  Have you had his glands checked recently?  At any rate - you might start by taking off his aerobars....I don't think he's going to need them quite yet.  By the way, your boy bears a stricking resemblence to Scott Bakula...

Dear PooBah,
The other night, my wife and I were driving downtown to go to a show, when out of nowhere, several cyclists rode right out in the middle of the street, causing us to nearly hit them!  It scared Brenda and me nearly half to death!  When we got out of the car, the cyclists started verbally attacking us!  Someone even caught the whole incident on film!  What gives?
Albert G.

You obviously encountered a few members of the Banana Bicycling Clan (BBC)...a proud group that seek to protect the fruit that is most important to all cyclists for its rich source of potassium and its totability. 
These brave souls ride to raise awareness of the plight of the banana louse which is decimating banana trees all over the world.  I know these cyclists were likely at fault, but next time, maybe let them pass, and give them a friendly wave.  Many times, members of the BBC will carry free gifts with them which they give out.  Had you played your cards a little differently, you might have gotten, say, one of these nifty holders that will protect you from bruising your own banana....

Dear PooBah
Can you give me some advice regarding my son?  He's really getting into some gangster rap music lately and emulates the culture so much that it has me quite concerned!  I bought him a bicycle, which he loves, but he's even found a way to incorporate cycling into this hip-hop fad!  What do I do?
Missy E.

Well if his necklace charm resembles anything like the real bike you bought him, there's no wonder you've got problems.  His friends are probably making fun of him for riding around like an old Danish man, which only encourages him to act out more!  You've got to try to speak his language and let him explore the little 'gangsta' inside of him.  In other words, you need to pimp that ride....Try something like this instead...

Dear PooBah-
A couple weeks ago you spoke about how Heinrich Hausler was quoted as saying "2nd place is like being the first loser" when he came in 2nd behind Mark Cavendish at last year's Milan-San Remo race.  I too hate coming in second and am wondering if anyone, in the history of cycling has ever actually found anything positive about it?
Timothy B.

This guy.

Thanks for reading everyone.  Enjoy the COMO CYCO Film Festival next week! 

Pedal on!