A good farmer always knows when to turn over the dirt.



And like a farmer who turns over the dirt, I give love to, and foster the virtual land from which this web log grows, nearly always yielding a new crop. Occasionally however, I dig back into the archives and pull out some work that never made it to press. Like for example, The HTC/Highroad press junket.

As I was recently surveying my plot I realized that I never took the BIKE Magazine Sh*tbike article I wrote to market.

Or rather, BIKE Magazine never took the Sh*tbike article to market, so without further adieu, I present to you what might have made it into the pages if it had;

“It’s not called The Shitbike ’cause it’s sweet.

Upon taking delivery of the beast, I began assembling it with excitement only matched by that of building a beautiful new steed. I reflected on all of the adventures it had seen before it landed in my grasp but my focus was on the one that we would soon be having together;
The following day I was to be matching skill, wits and fortitude of the liver with the Bay Area’s best at the Soil Saloon’s third year anniversary;

For the uninitiated, The Soil Saloon is a series of outlaw off road bike races that occur with little to no forewarning, and have attracted such industry luminaries as Sheila Moon and Gary Fisher, but don’t hold that against it. Each event has its own individual flair and varying tasks one must complete in order to win. You might have to come up with a spontaneous limerick about cowboys, or fire a wrist rocket at a target and everything in between.

The one common denominator of any of these feats of strength however almost always involves the consumption of alcohol. The title of the event in which I was about to engage was ‘The Six Pack Shootout’, so I knew the common thread would exist in force. On the day of the race, as dozens of people began filtering in to the ‘staging area’, it was explained to us that for each of the six laps we completed we would have to drink a beer. There was a shortcut on the course that would offer a solid advantage, but in order to take that route, a shot of whiskey would have to be consumed instead. The Sh*tbike is no stranger to these dangers, and I realized there was almost no pilot on earth qualified enough for such a debacle as myself.

Naturally while people were waiting for the starting gun to be fired, I stole the holeshot. With a running mount that would make Sven Nys hide his head in shame, the weight of my body challenged the hap-hazard seat clamp to a force of wills, sending the nose of the saddle skyward and into my man bits. While wrestling with my painful conundrum somewhere in my first lap, the bike decided that it would test my mettle by ejecting me in a corner over some ivy-hidden logs. Undaunted, I re-boarded and forced it to make peace with me;

Photo courtesy of Pamela Palma.

I was determined that ours was to be a dance of grace, and there would be no debate. Once the understanding was had, and the bike had received the blood trophy it apparently needed, I found myself quietly surprised at how good the bike felt ripping though Golden Gate Park’s loamy shaded single track. One by one the laps melted away and with four shots and three beers to my head, I crossed the finish line, only later realizing that I had mistakenly completed an extra lap. Bloody, muddy and battered, the lot of us stood as one in the winner’s circle and immersed ourselves in the prize distribution ceremony.





As the sun set and the kegs ran dry, the remaining stragglers melted away. I grabbed the burgundy beauty and with a brain full of good cheer and wounded legs full of lactic acid, pedaled off into the evening to find a whole new assortment of trouble in which to engage.”

And that, is what you would have read if you had been able to read it.

Now, before the magazine’s team of lawyers have the opportunity to come down on me, let’s get on to business.

At the head of today’s post, I offer you this,

Just chew on that for a little while.

Now, as dedicated missionaries of all things two wheeled, we’re well enough aware that cars are coffins, (at some point I heard Hurl say something to the effect that ‘cars make an excellent screwdriver. It’s too bad everyone uses them as a hammer‘, or something to that effect), but when in the hands of someone like Ken Block they become little more than a paintbrush in the hands of an artist. I came across the following video early Monday morning, and I’m sure has been seen by everyone on the planet by now, but for the two who have been in a coma since Sunday, I offer it for your consideration;

At five minutes and forty seconds, I actually crapped my pants a little.

Not related to the condition of my pants in the least, I have been jabber-jawing with my friend, and artist extraordinaire, Zoltron about the life and times of his company (and resident in Maximo Supremo) Sticker Robot. For those not in the know, they are the machine behind the higest quality decals (or for my Canadian friends, deckals) this side of the Tibetan Monk Sticker Factory, high in the Himalayas.

I wouldn’t have trusted the manufacturing of my ‘God Hates’ and hot sauce camouflage stickers to anyone else;

But don’t take my word for it. See for yourself;



And if that doesn’t inspire you to place an order, like now, maybe this will lube you up a bit;

Use the code “AHTBM10″ at checkout, and receive 10% off your custom sticker order.

Do you like apples? How about them apples?

Hell, Sticker Robot even used to make Swobo’s stickers, and if you’re like me, you know those were the business.

And speaking of Swobo, the machine is finally up and running under the direction of The Brothers Discoe (that’s actually their last name). For those keeping track, this is the company’s third run. In order, I like to think of it like this-

The First Version.
The My Version.
And The New Version.

I’ve been in contact with both of the brothers regarding some goings on and and quite looking forward to seeing what develops. As a matter of fact, they were so kind as to recently send me one of their new Bobby Brady/Hang-10 inspired Blasphemy jerseys, (in color ass-fault, naturally) and I have to say that upon my initial impression, I give three fat thumbs up for their efforts;


As any good farmer knows and as Swobo reemerges into its own once again, all it takes is a little bit of manure (that’s my contribution) and a whole lot of patience (this shovel’s not gonna lean on itself) to produce a healthy and hearty crop of something or another that’s worthwhile.

17 thoughts on “A good farmer always knows when to turn over the dirt.

  1. Happy to see Swobo coming back!
    Shitbike for the win! Rode one once like that, made a great catapult! And I was the ammo!

  2. Stevil you have to use your powers of evil to bring back the Swobo liners from years ago. I loved those things. That and the messages from you or the boys at Salsa to Shor-tay, left on the inside flaps of boxes.

  3. Watching the tour at a rad bar in my new town of two days, Seattle, and I happen across an All Hail The Black Markey sticker on their fridge. I think this town will work for me.

  4. Thanks for the shout Stevil – Peter and I are flattered to have your support and kind words as we breathe new life into the Swobo brand once again. We are moving slowly and with purpose as we reinvent old products and create new ones of our own. We can’t promise that we will have everything the “old Swobo” had, but what we make will be of superior quality, will be USA-sourced when we can and without a doubt our intention to be the last re-boot of the Swobo brand. Interbike will be the test as we show off the new-old-Merino gear now made in Colorado, bikes made in a new, smaller TW factory and a classic Swobo bike reinvented and made in the USA. We have a couple other tweaks and new categories around the corner too… stay tuned.

    Best,
    Justin

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