This is an extract from ‘Momentum’ a bimonthly Canadian/Vancouverian cycling publication. Free in bike shops, CAD$40/year international subscription,
www.momentumplanet.com. I have issues 28/29 if anyone wants a read.
Field Guide to Vancouver Cyclists.
(also has Road racer, Weekend recreation riders, recumbent riders, bicycle messengers, common commuter, bmx rider. I think they forgot homeless bumbike rider)
Scientific name: Difigus-apparatus hipsterati
By Lyle Vallie
CAN BE SEEN: Claiming the entire roadway in dense urban areas, splitting lanes, and skidding through corners. Most notably spotted standing off the seat, diving forward, and locking the rear wheel moments before entering an intersection, in an attempt to scrub off speed and have others take note of their presence.
Often can be identified by simplistic elegant track bicycles, tight denim pants rolled calf high, tattoos, facial hair (male), creative hats, handkerchiefs around the neck or bicycle. They can also be recognized by their lower appendages. many will have chequered skate shoes, bound in double toe straps and retro style chrome clips, but a few may have the same type of moon shoes worn by road racers. Unlike the roadie, the Fixie rider’s feet will not stop pedalling, unless they actually stop for a red light.
LIKES TO HANG OUT: Though usually a blur, the Fixie rider can occasionally be spotted at a lesser velocity, walking their steed down the sidewalk to the nearest coffee bar. They’ll often remain seemingly motionless when congregated in packs, balancing on their bicycles. Some will perch atop their frame to deftly ‘man up’ a challenger/ A change in pack momentum is very hard to initiate: getting them moving once stopped, or getting them stopped once moving is equally difficult.
LIKES TO EAT: Often found devouring the cheapest vegetarian or ethnic food possible, and quickly.
UNIQUE QUALITIES: Fixie riders are excellent climbers and will scramble up the most daunting hill in an unwisely large dear, in order to skid on the way down. Despite their Neo-Luddite inspired machines, they often get along with road racers and can be seen frolicking in the hills together in playful interspecies competition.
DISTINCT BEHAVIOUR: A bizarre mating ritual of the Difigus-apparatus hipsterati is to skid past their potential fixed mate, while yelling ‘HEY FIXIE!’ This is followed by MP3 playlist fuelled dance parties and gratuitous making out. Often fixie riders will display their bicycles prominently in front of a house party, rock show, or gallery opening in order to attract others to the gathering.
STATUS: Many of the other cyclists found in this field buide are (d)evolving into the difigus-apparatus hipsterati category each day. Similar to a viral infection or some zombie horror, their numbers are increasing at an exponential rate. If the population does not implode on itself, there is a chance that the Difigus-apparatus hipsterati may take over the cycling kingdom.