Archive for the Books Category

“Mountain Bike!”

Posted in Books on December 8, 2008 by bencycles

From William Nealy's book "Mountain Bike!"

From William Nealy's book "Mountain Bike!"

I’ve been pretty busy lately, even with the bad arm and all. But I think I’ve just about drained the “Watch it Now” function on Netflix and had to resort to reading again… Which brings me to one of my all-time cycling related fav’s: Mountain Bike! by William Nealy (RIP). Every time I flip through this thing, I find some little nugget. The book itself reminds me of The Karate Kid, sort of the wax on!…wax off! method of learning, perhaps.  The book is pretty dated now, with fully rigid bikes, steel frames, and cantilever brakes. Oh wait, that’s cyclocross. What’s old is new again my friends and a lot of the techniques described in this book would do a few of those roadies turned crossers some good. Need an example? Fine:

“If you find yourself among a bunch of  New Age Kooks, a skull-cap hastily constructed from aluminum foil will give the rider some protection from geek-wave radiation.”

Sage advice my friends, sage advice.

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Cool Book

Posted in Books on August 26, 2008 by bencycles

A great book about cycling I read in my free time (free time, that’s funny) is “The Rider” by Tim Krabbé. At first, I almost stopped reading it because it seemed arrogant and kind of fumbly. But as I read more and got into the rhythm of his writing style (Jack Kerouac if he used a bike instead of hitch hiking, maybe?), I began to realize the true genius of what Krabbé had accomplished. The way it explores the mutant psyche and random thoughts that go through the mind in the middle of a race is almost too accurate in a couple places and while I know it’s all in my own head during a race, to read it described in text is an interesting experience. It made me wonder if it takes a special state of psychosis to be a good cyclist or if that is learned over time. hmmm…