Archive | May, 2011

The three things you shouldn’t do while riding your bicycle

29 May


I learned  a lesson on a Friday. A valuable one.

I was on my way back from class, riding the same streets I do almost everyday. No surprises. Same traffic lights, same path. I had been walking towards the bicing station with a friend to whom I was telling the story of this guy who had once been fined with €120 for going through a red traffic light – with his bike. You know, this is the kind of story you use to laugh at someone. Not to be cruel, but out of fear…like who hasn’t ever ignored a red light when riding his or her bike. I have, not all the time, but sometimes, sometimes I do. Anyway, we were both saying something like “what a loser, getting a fine for that.”

Then I got on the bike, I said good-bye to my friend and when I was on the road I called the guy in question; the one who had been fined. And while on the phone, I went through a red traffic light, one where there are never cars, it’s more of a pedestrian light, really. And what was waiting for me right next to it? Two police officers, looking at me. One of them waved at me to stop. “I’m in trouble,” I though. I was being punished for making fun of others.

“Talking on the phone and going through a red traffic light,” one of them said (at least he forgot to mention being slightly drunk: on the last day of class we celebrated with this special rum a girl from class brought from Venezuela). “This will cost you 3 points and a fine.” “Oh,” my face was totally motionless, in fear. “I’m so sorry, officer. The thing is I was just making fun of a guy I know who had to pay 120euro. I know this road too well.” “And that’s a problem: when you think you know the road. It’s still dangerous, you wouldn’t have seen the car, if there was one,” he replied. The only thing that came out of my mouth was the following retarded sentence:

“I was very excited because they gave me a prize today in class.”

One of them turned to his colleague. He said “it’s not in my hand. My colleague will have to decide if we give you a fine or not.”

Then I looked at the other officer. He was very serious and then said “so what was the prize of?”

And then I knew I was saved.

I hope that you, reader, if ever decide to take your bicycle drunk, talk on the phone while riding AND ignore red traffic lights make sure there are no police cars around. But better not doing it at all. Or only one of them…

Happy Sunday!



Bicycle porn in movement

27 May

Ok…so this is me riding one of these hellish Bicing bicycles (see one of my ‘adventures‘ riding them). Please notice how I treat the people walking on the bicycle lane. No mercy!

P.s. For full enjoyment of this bicing-bicycle porn, turn on the volume.

Blue Fixie in Barcelona

23 May

Look at that!

I was a birthday party the other day, and a friend of mine told me that he just bought a fixie bicycle. He then pointed at his legs, rolled up his trousers and showed me three or four bruises. I obviously laughed at him. Who buys a bicycle to get hurt? I always thought it was a matter of moving around, and if it happens that you do it in an object of beauty, better. Apparently I am wrong. Fixie bicycles are not only to move around, in fact my friend’s bike doesn’t even have brakes (seriously…are you insane? I would probably be dead by now if my bicycles didn’t have brakes). This means that he’s trying to get to places really, really fast or that (possibly) his bicycle is as he said “to do tricks.”

Fixies are cool, they are fast and you “feel” the bicycle like no other but…but, yeah ok, there’s no but – but do use breakes!!!

That’s all. Barcelona is summer right now! I’m taking the bicycle and going for a ride in a minute…

Raleigh in Barcelona

11 May

This Raleigh was locked next to my apartment in Barcelona.

According to the Wikipedia article, Raleigh, which is based in Nottingham, UK, is one of the oldest bicycle manufactures in the world. If you are a professor at University reading this, I know that you are thinking about how unreliable my source is. But hey: focus on the bicycle. What a bicycle this is!!

I don’t recall seeing any other Raleighs in Barcelona, so it was a nice find. And I fell in love with this one instantly. First, the yellow, blue and red frame. Amazing frame. Second, the red chain and lastly the blue tires. All matching, of course. I want it!!

When I returned the bicycle the other day at My Beautiful Parking, the girl there who was very nice told me about an “alleycat” only for girls happening on Saturday. I thought it was a super cool idea (I have to confess that despite my love for bikes I didn’t know what an alleycat was – I pretended though). However I felt like I’d be a loser if I tried to participate with no bicycle that was my own. Therefore I publicly announce that for next year’s all-girl alleycat I am going to win, and it’ll be with my own bike. Hopefully something nearly as nice as this Raleigh…

Yellow Bicycle Corpse

5 May

It’s been a fun week, and I’ve seen lots of amazing bicycles. Perhaps both things go together. I had my good friend A and her friend D visiting. They both stayed at home and we went out on a Monday night. That night we also went to the casino. I saw it as a social experiment (and didn’t play, I’m sure my hand would tremble when betting a 5euro chip), but D won more than a 100 euro. My conclusions: apart from him and some other young guys there are mostly creepy old men. Although young men there were also quite creepy. And what did D do with the extra money? Well he invited us for lunch! And that’s when I saw this bicycle corpse lying on the floor in front Barcelona’s Gothic cathedral.

On Saturday I went to Montcada i Reixac on the bicycle! I came across lots of real bike riders, you know, the ones that dress up in full gear…I have to admit I thought we would share some sort of human bond among us, so I was disappointed not to find it. Maybe they think of me as just an amateur, an ‘aficionado’ (that’s really the word I want). But anyways, I made it to Montcada through a bicycle lane that goes along the river Besòs. When it ended I had already been riding for more than an hour so I had to go back to Barcelona to return the two-hour gift I had rented. I was proud I made 30km in only two hours. I have no idea if this is actually fast or not.