Sweet Swap Meat

Cross-posted from Textura Design … for all you DIYs out there in the big ‘ol blogopshere, check Swap Meat, where you send Coudal (a creative agency) the cool thing you’ve made and get a cool thing in return, like a book about a guy that wore red pants for 30 days straight, a lovely Box of Documents, or this Cat on a Bike print (since sold out).

From Japan (Part 12): Getting To Takayama

Mark V report from the 15th

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p> 1085m%20pass.jpg After our slog through the monsoon to Shirotori, the sun came out accompanied by a stiff wind from the north. My knee was questionable, but if we were to maintain our schedule, we had little choice but to pack the bikes up and go.

Rolling out of town, my knee immediately began to protest. We decided to bypass Shirokawa-go and head for Takayama. That way, we would be able to take a rest day and still maintain schedule, but it would make the current day’s riding steeper and longer. The initial kilometers were flat but we were plagued by strong headwinds until we could turn east into the mountains. For the most part, we could stick to the smaller roads without traffic.

I don’t really remember too much of the ride….basically I spent the whole day with tunnel vision on Angelo’s rear wheel trying to focus out the pain in my leg. I’m told we climbed multiple passes, the highest being 1085m. Whenever we stopped or descended, my leg would seize up. The second pedal stroke would have me gasping in pain. If not for the threat of being stranded in no man’s land between towns, if I were home in Seattle, I would not have been walking, let alone propelling a 56 lbs bike up mountains.

Sweet Sweet Coffee

coffee.jpg Tobym tipped us to the sweet sweet coffee tee from Unicorn Burger.

Toby knows that cyclists are as obsessed with coffee as anyone. I’ve posted on the perfect cup and my current fav is Peets, which packs more caffeine per sip. I started on Peets while in Beijing and brewed it up with Señor Muggy.

Morning coffee with Bettie

Pam enjoys her morning coffee with Bettie, a sport-utility bike. Watch more Bettie videos and here’s a version of Morning Coffee with Bettie you can download for your iPod (900K).

Top 10 Worst Cities for Bicycle Theft

Unbreakable Bonds, Kryptonite’s blog, posted last week on the Top 10 Worst Cities for Bicycle Theft. NYC is number one and Seattle is 8th.

I’ve def had a few worried moments with Bettie, that’s a big investment for a crack head to ride off with and use a cable lock, plus disabling the motor. Bettie usually attracts a crowd so that’s a deterrent. And, as Mark V noted in his post, in Japan theft isn’t a problem and we learned that as well in Beijing. Thanks to Scott for the tip on the post.

Also see a short film on the bike locking ability of New Yorkers.

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