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BikeSnobNYC on our MJ memorial ride: "Enough already!"

Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on June 26th, 2009 at 11:28 am

Yesterday was quite a day.

In the span of about two hours, we learned of Michael Jackson's death, planned a ride (and had a blast), did three TV interviews, got mentioned in The Oregonian, and even got noticed by the New York Times.

And this morning, the famous bike-blogger/comedian BikeSnobNYC came across that mention of our ride in the New York Times and couldn't take it any longer. Disgusted by Portland's biking spirit, he wrote (emphasis mine):

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"Now, I realize Portland considers itself the home of "bike culture," and I'm sure it's a lovely place to ride a bike, but seriously--it's enough already. Is there any news or pop cultural event around which the people of Portland will not form some sort of kitchy theme ride? [No.] Do they just sit around waiting for things to happen or for people to die so they can put on stupid outfits and jump on their bikes? Also, where do they find the time? This ride had already happened before the Times even managed to complete its report. And while the people of Portland apparently have plenty of time on their hands, they are less endowed when it comes to dignity.

I realize Portland is a very progressive place when it comes to riding bikes, but I can't help thinking that they may have set the cause of cycling back to about the Michael Jackson x Mick Jagger "collabo" days. If I were not already a cyclist and I was headed to a bike shop to purchase my very first bicycle, and on the way I saw a bunch of people riding around dressed like Michael Jackson, I'd probably rethink the whole thing and start pricing motorcycles instead."

Read his full post here.

Thanks for the laugh BikeSnob. Next time you visit Portland, drop me a line and we'll do a super-kitchy BikeSnobNYC-themed ride.

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Comments
  • saypdx June 26, 2009 at 11:33 am

    He ended well, tho:

    "Then again, maybe the people of Portland do have it right after all. Here in New York City I was honked at by a driver this morning who seemed annoyed by the simple fact that I was riding in the bike lane. The driver was blasting "Billie Jean," and the crappy Buick he was driving probably rolled off the lot at about the same time that the song first hit the airwaves"

    Props to all things bikey

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  • browse June 26, 2009 at 11:34 am

    Where do I go to sign up for the BikeSnobNYC "Stick Up Your Ass" ride?

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  • Mike June 26, 2009 at 11:37 am

    I wanted a "The children of SoCal are safe" ride, but felt to apathetic to organize.

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  • tonyt June 26, 2009 at 11:37 am

    Let's see, it's last Thursday AND it's Pedalpalooza, so YES people ARE waiting for the next ride. Oh noes!

    I was working so I couldn't join, but hey, I enjoyed it vicariously!

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  • velocentric June 26, 2009 at 11:38 am

    Not every swing gets a home run. He could have left those comments out of the Friday Quiz.

    Snobbie's still awesome funny.

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  • Schrauf June 26, 2009 at 11:40 am

    That's awesome.

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  • the future June 26, 2009 at 11:44 am

    "and on the way I saw a bunch of people riding around dressed like Michael Jackson, I’d probably rethink the whole thing and start pricing motorcycles instead.”

    you're lucky if they're dressed at all dude.

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  • b June 26, 2009 at 12:05 pm

    How can you see a bunch of people biking around dressed like Michael Jackson and not think it is anything but a WHOLE NEW FLAVOR OF AWESOME is beyond me.

    ('bikesnobnyc' ride, anyone?)

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  • BURR June 26, 2009 at 12:07 pm

    LOLZ at all the self-righteous PDX cyclists taking offense at this!

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  • Jeff June 26, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    Though you have to admit that much of Portland's kitchy bike "culture" amounts to nothing more than douchebaggery...

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  • M June 26, 2009 at 12:23 pm

    BSNYC was gentle considering the truly awesome smugness around here related to anything anyone does on a bike. It's hard to parody self-parody.

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  • Joe Metal Cowboy Kurmaskie June 26, 2009 at 12:29 pm

    Love this! Love bikesnob, quite witty and harsh. We need to laugh at ourselves as much as possible!

    To be heckled on this scale is the highest form of flattery.

    And Jeff - this is why I love bikeportland - I don't think I've ever seen douchebaggery appear in a sentence, well done.

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  • xorbit June 26, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    i am *totally* organizing a ride to celebrate spontaneous ride creation! who is with me? we can dress like the internet!!

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  • becky June 26, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    I feel so special that BikeSnob mentioned Portland. For that, I'm going to go add some more bar ends to my bike.

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  • edjukator June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    re: b

    everyday the brightly colored fixie kids sesh in our local parks is a bikesnob themed ride happening in portland.

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  • middle of the road guy June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    @Becky. Go with the anodized purple.

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  • SkidMark June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Sorry, I agree with him. I get tired of the costume rides too, there's too many of them.

    And anyone getting offended, how do you dress up all kooky and then take yourself so seriously?

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  • SkidMark June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Sorry, I agree with him. I get tired of the costume rides too, there's too many of them.

    And anyone getting offended, how do you dress up all kooky and then take yourself so seriously?

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  • tonyt June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    He's just jealous because no one joined his Farrah Fawcett "Charlie's Angels" ride.

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  • bahueh June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    well, he does have a very valid point...

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  • naomi June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Bikesnob rules and his commentary always makes me laugh. I agree with some of his views on Portland too.. sometimes the "weirdness" seems a little too contrived in this town. When "weird" is expected, when it becomes the norm, it ceases to be weird.

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  • redhippie June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    No wonder I hate the Yankees.

    FUTHBSNYC

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  • naomi June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Bikesnob rules and his commentary always makes me laugh. I agree with some of his views on Portland too.. sometimes the "weirdness" seems a little too contrived in this town. When "weird" is expected, when it becomes the norm, it ceases to be weird.

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  • miguelaron June 26, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    "moonwalk in peace" tshirts at miguelaron.com.

    someone told me about ride last night after i had made the shirts.

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  • tonyt June 26, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    "all the self-righteous" ?

    At risk of disrupting your self-righteous fantasy about people who are self-righteously offended, I count a grand total of one person (#2) who seems offended there BURR.

    Bikesnob NYC is probably just jealous since no one showed up for his Farrah Fawcett ride.

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  • miguelaron June 26, 2009 at 1:30 pm

    AYHSMB (is what I think BSNYC would say)

    "moonwalk in peace" tshirts at miguelaron.com

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  • Case June 26, 2009 at 1:39 pm

    He owes me a beer! Can't wait to collect when he gets out here. We've agreed to show up in Lucha masks to conceal our identity.

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  • John Lascurettes June 26, 2009 at 1:51 pm

    In the span of about two hours, we learned of Michael Jackson’s death, planned a ride (and had a blast), did three TV interviews, got mentioned in The Oregonian, and even got noticed by the New York Times.

    I told you it would get more attention than the world's largest World Naked Bike Ride. I wish you had taken the bet. Saw you guys at Last Thursday and looked like you were having a blast.

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  • Alexis June 26, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    As little love as I have for Michael Jackson (I do enjoy some of the music he made when he was still a black man, but as a white woman/pedophile he creeped the hell out of me) I think any excuse for a bike ride is cool. With rides to tour chocolate shops, meat markets, pubs, graveyards, 'dead freeways,' and food carts, there is nothing we will not make into a bicycle ride. Including our right to death with dignity.

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  • buzz June 26, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    C'mon! It is NYC. They don't play second fiddle to anyone and I am sure that they read reports about being being the number one city for cycling sends the average New Yorker through the roof. And, I am sure this guy is mad because he didn't think of it.

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  • Sean June 26, 2009 at 2:20 pm

    geez leave it to portland passive aggressiveness to spin this negatively...this is the most lighthearted thing biksnob has ever written.

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  • maxadders June 26, 2009 at 2:28 pm

    Contrived is the word for it.

    There's this weird thing in bike culture. Maybe it's a backlash against competitiveness? Notice too many wealthy dentists playing weekend warrior in full lycra kits, and soon you're affixing a blow-up doll to the rear seat of a tandem, donning clown makeup and pedaling in a "wacky" theme ride.

    This makes sense to you? Did you ever stop to think about how you arrived at ironically bike-dancing in dayglo tights in the middle of Alberta Street?

    I know what you're going to say: "That's awesome!" But why? Why is this "awesome"? Looks foolish to me.

    Yeah, same for all the "bike dance troupes". Same for Zoobomb's contrived rebel image. When everyone's a nonconformist, nobody is.

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  • jacque June 26, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    And they had 40 people show up for a lame wnbr.

    And if MJ had discovered zoobomb as a youth he might have avoided all that troubled part of his life- and found himself saved, and found that there IS meaning in this life, and that you are OK and even loved.

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  • maxadders June 26, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    Maybe next year I'll lead the Anti-Bike-Fun Ride for Pedalpalooza, where we take a really annoying route to a completely unremarkable destination. Then we'll stand around awkwardly waiting for something to happen before giving up and heading off in our separate directions. No costumes allowed.

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  • Brad June 26, 2009 at 3:42 pm

    Maxadders made my day!

    Now I'm off on my super, "Commute Home by Myself Ride".

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  • David June 26, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    "To be heckled on this scale is the highest form of flattery."

    As a fan of both Portland and Bike Snob NYC, your quote made my day. I aspire to be mocked by somebody of his caliber.

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  • David June 26, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    "To be heckled on this scale is the highest form of flattery."

    Joe, as a fan of both Portland and Bike Snob NYC, your quote made my day. I aspire to be mocked by somebody of his caliber.

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  • encephalopath June 26, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    @34 maxadders wins the internet...

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  • Jean M June 26, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    How is it that a New Yorker misspells "kitschy"? :-)

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  • Carl June 26, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    "Maybe next year I'll lead the Anti-Bike-Fun Ride for Pedalpalooza, where we take a really annoying route to a completely unremarkable destination."

    Already done, maxadders.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/mattpicio/570882006/in/set-72157600402883601/
    I led the "Worst Ride" during Pedalpalooza '07 and '08 but discontinued it due to popular demand. Masochists still ask me when I'm leading the next one.

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  • Afro Biker June 26, 2009 at 6:20 pm

    Worshiping Michael Jackson like he was some diety baffles me. Why look, the black man can sing and dance for you, look, the black man can bounce a basketball and jump high in the air for you. Unfortunately the only the accolades of "entertainers" are so celebrated. It's ashame when so many before have contributed in areas of of medicine, science, education, etc. Yet their names hardly mentioned if they are known at all. Just Beat it.

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  • matthew June 26, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    props to the king o'pop. born a poor black boy and died a rich white woman. now THAT was a hell of a run!!!

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  • Q`ztal June 26, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    +5 controversial to BikeSnobNYC!
    In one tiny article he has stirred such self righteousness and so many entertaining comments.
    All without calling for violence towards cyclists or revocation of our rights.
    You'd think he put a stop sign up on the Springwater Trail.

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  • LuckyLab June 26, 2009 at 8:53 pm

    @becky - I believe the Snob would approve of an ironic orange setup, as well. But really, if you want a mention on BikeSnobNYC, put them both on in an arrangement that appears non-functional and take a picture, post how wonderful your setup is with its multiple hand positions, and wait. :-)

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  • thefuture June 26, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    trying to throw criticism back towards bsnyc is like that scene in the matrix where he's keanu reaves and you're those couple of stern looking fellows. you think you're all bad and taking shots at him though all the while he's seeing it in slow motion so before you know it he's using your own fist to punch you in your face and your wife's knocked up.

    just sayin.

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  • old&slow June 26, 2009 at 9:34 pm

    Judging from most of the comments, my "negative persona" is fitting right in. I guess I am not the only one who thinks "michael jackson dress up rides" and other nonsense that bikeportland promotes is just making cycling look juvenile. The next time a Demerol addicted pedophile dies, just go on a personal journey bike ride for yourself to remember the "inner michael" you cherish.

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  • matthew June 26, 2009 at 11:42 pm

    PLEASE.......

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  • Bootsy Collins June 27, 2009 at 12:01 am

    I just want to ride. do goofy things and enjoy my life. As "enlightened" as portlander's are. Why can't you leave me alone when it comes to me wearing a helmet. You people make the experience of riding the streets of my new city distastefull if I donot conform. Its not even a law for F's sake.

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  • matthew June 27, 2009 at 12:17 am

    Please..... nyc bike snob has it right, tit's up on the money. if you can't make fun of yourself don't poke at other's. all y'all self rightous asshat's just take a pill... okay, a few. maybe some 'shrooms for prespective.

    johnathan said me that my too serious and literal perspective was a bit much (on a totally different topic) and i think his thought holds true with this thread as well.

    regaurdless of how i feel about michael the pederast and how much i like the jackson 5 and loath thriller and billy jean... i have my opinion and you have yours. ain't this a great country? hopefully none of us will be executed for what we think.

    you smell what i'm steppin' in??

    love to hate or hate to love???

    hmmmm..........

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  • D.R. Miller June 27, 2009 at 1:06 am

    To the people who hate costumey bike rides: move away? I mean, there was a time not many years ago when there was no such thing as a costumey bike ride or what we've come to know as "bike fun" at all. And maybe by pioneering that kind of expression on the streets, right here in River City, we've made it safe for the masses to follow suit, crafted a new more colorful kind of conformity. Who knows. But how can you be against spontaneity and joy?

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  • Michael M. June 27, 2009 at 9:08 am

    There really does need to be a BikeSnobNYC Honorary Ironic Orange Julius Pedalpalooza ride, or one that establishes the Portland edition of the Great Hipster Silk Route (only fixies allowed, of course), which would have to connect the various Stumptown Cafes, at minimum. He is too funny ... especially impressive how he's managed to preserve anonymity in this age of obsessive-compulsive dirty-laundry airing.

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  • Dan Liu June 27, 2009 at 11:54 am

    What if you took the World's Greatest Madone and attached the world's smallest dance platform (aka the Jandd Expedition rack)? Every stroke of the pedal would be like doing a backwards moonwalk.

    Now where did I pack all of my bar ends...

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  • isaac June 27, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    Obviously, Jonathan and Bike Snob should be arch-nemeses: Both bloggers, both cyclists, one in Portland, one in New York, one is super sincere, positive, and helpful, the other is sarcastic and hilarious.

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  • Steven J June 28, 2009 at 2:42 am

    Who is this "BikeSnob"and what has he/she done with the New York I once knew.

    Lets meet at oaks amusement park for a discussion ride.

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  • Borgbike June 28, 2009 at 11:49 am

    I read bikesnobnyc to be annoyed by the over use of the word "ironic."

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  • April June 28, 2009 at 2:12 pm

    I thought the BikeSnobNYC post was funny.

    But I don't understand the haters on this blog. If you don't enjoy random costume rides, then...don't go on them. Simple. Done.

    Meanwhile, I'm having a hell of a lot of harmless non-commercialized fun and meeting new awesome people all the time.

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  • Matt Picio June 29, 2009 at 9:29 am

    Carl (#40) - Amen. I don't think you're ever going to top that first "Worst Routes" ride, which had THIS intersection which one could not legally leave: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mattpicio/571396399/in/set-72157600402883601/

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  • jeff June 29, 2009 at 11:53 am

    At least we "received this criticism with good humor", LOL bikesnob. I'll be in Gotham next week, see you there ;)

    http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com/

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  • maxadders June 29, 2009 at 1:01 pm

    "Worst Routes" sounds like you're trying to drum up some sort of advocacy angle, drawing attention to problems and suggesting solutions. My Anti-Bike-Fun Ride would have no such intentions.

    We wouldn't find the "worst" intersection, we'd just meander through some average ones. The destination would be something everyone's seen a million times. The ride would be short-- because it's all too easy to mistake long, boring rides as worthy accomplishments in their own right. We're shooting for all-around underwhelmingness.

    Maybe the leader would quit halfway through without telling anyone.

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  • arcof tern June 29, 2009 at 4:46 pm

    I'm a puma.

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  • SkidMark June 29, 2009 at 8:53 pm

    D.R.Miller. I did move away, back to San Diego. Got tired of people who've never even been to California criticizing it, and the whining about Californians making $40,000 houses be worth $200,000, and the short memory about where BMX and mountain biking were born. I don't see how a supposedly progressive person's "love it or leave it" attitude is any different from the rednecks you despise and that the hipsters like to emulate with their trucker caps and mustaches/beards.

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  • SkidMark June 29, 2009 at 8:54 pm

    Since the majority of the people I know in Portland I met through Zoobomb, I don't have any hate toward people who like to dress up in costumes. It's just not for me. And in the way that I respect their decision to dress up they respect my decision not to, unlike some of the other subculture alterna-conformists that exist in Portland. Zoobomb begat the Sprockettes and every other bike/dance team, and I have always been a big supporter of them, and I will be promoting them before they get to SoCal with the Tour de Fat. At least Zoobomb has the ability to laugh at themselves (Nerds on Bikes) and not get butt-hurt when someone criticises or makes fun of them.

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  • oh so true January 29, 2010 at 4:17 pm

    bikesnob is so right.
    i live in LA and his comments also apply about the shitty scene here

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