Mind is the Ride

Boneshaker's Jet McDonald drops by to tell us about his latest project

7 Mar 2016  |  Posted by GUEST  |  Categories: Art & Design, Correspondence, Curiosities, Friends, Stories, Travel & Adventure Cycling

Cycling and philosophy do not seem like obvious companions. Some would say the only thing that links the two is a preponderance of beards. However, philosophers have always wanted to take things apart to see how they work, much like the budding bike mechanic, and then put them back together again and see how they roll, much like a kid with a new bike. There is something so exhilarating about cycling, sweating up a hill and then racing down again, that it offers an unparalleled insight into the boundaries of human experience. What does it mean to feel pain and pleasure closely aligned? What does it mean to sense the whole extent of your body stretching and easing into the rough tread of a good ride? Can we measure these experiences objectively or are they only in the mind of the rider? What, after all, is the mind?

Philosophers love this stuff. It’s like chocolate cake to them. Or croissant if you’re a continental existentialist.

There’s a great story about the young Bertrand Russell (some would say the foremost British philosopher of the last hundred years) and the young George Bernard Shaw (big time orator and playwright, massive beard) detailed by Craig Brown in “Hello Goodbye Hello: A Circle of 101 Remarkable Meetings.”

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Yehuda Moon x Brooks England

The famous comic strip revisits some adventures featuring some classic leather

4 Dec 2015  |  Posted by Oliver  |  Categories: Art & Design, Curiosities, Friends, Monthly highlights, Saddles, Bags, Etc.

We are very pleased to introduce a series of cartoons from the chaps over at Yehuda Moon & The Kickstand Cyclery to present a series of comic strips featuring some saddles that are very close to our hearts.

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Honesty Box Dinners

Juliet heads out to see what Devon can deliver

2 Sep 2015  |  Posted by Juliet Elliott  |  Categories: Bicycles, Correspondence, Curiosities, Friends, Monthly highlights, Travel & Adventure Cycling

Roughly three years ago when I announced my departure from London, people couldn’t have been more surprised. “But you’re so very London, with your fixed gear bike, your tattoos and your job in the media,” they exclaimed. “Just how will you survive without being able to buy pomegranates at 3am and extremely tiny lukewarm coffee for the best part of a fiver?”

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Back to the Future

Camille McMillan reveals the inspiration for the Demi-Porkeur

1 Jul 2015  |  Posted by GUEST  |  Categories: Art & Design, Bicycles, Correspondence, Curiosities, Friends, Monthly highlights

In 1957 Roland Barthes published  ’Mythologies’ , a collection of essays .. the best known is “The New Citroën” the ”Goddess”.

The Citroën DS 19 replaced the Citroën Traction Avant, the Citroën Traction Avant was old fashioned… pre World War 2 tech and styling.  The DS according to Barthes was perfection.

The DS was perfection of Modernism, the high watermark of French design and ethos. World War 2 was in the history books along with the old aesthetics of the La Belle Époque ”Beautiful Era” and Art Nouvos.  The Citroën DS was the future manifest in an object.

French style, aesthetics engineering was at its height… for me it was a high point for French’e'ness, French bicycles and bicycles in general.

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The Tweed Run 2015 Gallery

Our favourite pictures from a day of tweed and picnics

20 Apr 2015  |  Posted by Oliver  |  Categories: Art & Design, Correspondence, Curiosities, Events, Friends, Monthly highlights, Style & Fashion, Urban Cycling

This Saturday saw the Tweed Run take place around London.  As with years gone by, we were again a sponsor of this marvellous celebration of cycling.  Here we share our favourite pictures from the day.  Enjoy!

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From River to Seashore

Guest Blogger Bike Snob NYC Gets Fried

8 Apr 2015  |  Posted by Bike Snob NYC  |  Categories: Bicycles, Correspondence, Curiosities, Friends, Monthly highlights, Travel & Adventure Cycling, Urban Cycling

When you’re a responsible (or at least not criminally negligent) adult it can be tough to make time to ride.  That’s why the secret to maintaining a healthy cycling life is sneaking in those rides when you can–which in turn means knowing when to dispense with the formalities.

Sure, it’s nice to wear the special clothes and brew the special coffee and apply the special unguents to your crotch and limbs in preparation for your time in the saddle, but sometimes doing so can be the difference between taking advantage of an open riding window and having the sash come crashing down on your head while you’re still applying your chamois cream.

On a recent afternoon I had just such a window.  Birds were singing, the sun was shining, and a pie was cooling on the windowsill.   I knew I had to get out there while I had the chance.  So I skipped the riding attire, hastily stuffed a vegan man-purse from Rivendell with some essentials, and decided to take a spin out to City Island, which bills itself as the “Seaport of the Bronx.”

Here’s what I packed as I ran out the door:

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Pistaminati The Rules

Dave Noakes introduces us to the Pistaminati...

29 Mar 2015  |  Posted by GUEST  |  Categories: Bicycles, Correspondence, Curiosities, Urban Cycling

The Cambium-clad bikes of Red Hook Crit contenders Team Desgenà

The world is constantly changing, everything is evolving, new technology is created, old trends fade and new emerge. Track bicycles have been around for years and whilst the materials, construction processes and designs have evolved the essence has remained the same. The track bike has a humble and firm place in the bicycle hall of fame and as cyclists it is our duty to keep some of this heritage alive.

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Like Water For Metaphor

Guest Blogger Bike Snob NYC's Day-After-New-Year's-Day Ride

5 Jan 2015  |  Posted by Bike Snob NYC  |  Categories: Bicycles, Correspondence, Curiosities, Friends, Stories

It is traditional for cyclists to partake in a New Year’s Day ride, which is precisely why I leave the roads to the wobbly legions making good on their resolutions and sweating out their hangovers.

Instead, I skip the ride and take a walk on the beach, where I ask mighty Neptune to provide me with a sign of what to expect in the coming year.  Last year his portent came in the form of hot dogs, while this year he presented me with this disembodied fish head.

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Vickers Bicycle Company – The Sundown Bike

A unique bicycle visits the B1866 London Store.

16 Dec 2014  |  Posted by Tim Gunn  |  Categories: Art & Design, Bicycles, Curiosities, Saddles, Bags, Etc., Stories, Style & Fashion, Urban Cycling

 

Savile Row meets Coventry

Across England, are towns and regions which are well known for manufacturing certain types of products and only a short cycle ride from the Brooks Smethwick works for instance, is the famous Birmingham Jewellery Quarter. If you need a sharp fitting suit, then London’s Savile Row is the place to go and for those who attended L’Eroica Britannia last June; will know that Bakewell is remembered for its tarts. Stopping right there, before I get into trouble. I’ll take you back to Savile Row, and while trying not to get confused with tarts and tailor’s, I shall tell you more.

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Traditional British Manufacturing

A look into life at our factory in Smethwick

11 Dec 2014  |  Posted by Oliver  |  Categories: Curiosities, Heritage, Monthly highlights, Videos

 

A short film about our Factory by Blue Monday for the Birmingham Post Business Awards.

 

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