CULTURE

Under construction

Riding into a construction site here isn’t uncommon.  In fact, if you got any measurable explorer’s bone in your body and regularly scout out new roads, then riding here means consistent jaunts through something being built.  It comes as no surprise, considering a huge portion of the economy is propped up by construction and government …

Racing alleycats

For time immortal (or, roughly 2006, when fixed gear and brakeless riding became a hot trend in cities across the globe), you find the sporadic article highlighting endemic parts of “city cycling culture”. This includes topics such as, what is a fixed gear, why do these cyclists ride dangerously, from where does the culture draw …

Breaking your habit

This seems a counter-intuitive piece of advice, considering the importance I’ve placed on making a habit of your riding. A strong riding habit is the quickest way to discipline yourself and achieve something more from it. Truth is, riding in such a regimented way can oftentimes suck the fun out of it, so it’s important …

#offseason

It’s come. No, not the winter and its interminably dreary weather. The pre-winter season, in which shorter days and slightly cooler climes, begins to corrode any sense of discipline you might have developed over the year. In Chengdu it settles in, a flat damp shade of grey, and despite not being too awful of a …

Shop boss

I’ve mentioned my buddy, Jordan, before. He used to run a little Cannondale shop not too far off from where I’d had my own shop. Not long ago, due to a huge rent hike, he was also forced to close the shop space down, moving his tools home and running his operations remotely. It was …

Tear it down

I wrote a few weeks back about one of my favorite corners of the city for riding. The piece itself was a remark on mindfulness. Paying attention, as everything’s in transit. Life in a burgeoning Chinese city is in constant flux, so witnessing this by bike is a different experience, one I feel worth regularly …

Racing in China

In the West, within the cycling community there’s always an organic appreciation for sport and the value of competition. It’s prescient in everything from grassroots alleycats, to larger, more corporate races. If you decide to race, you’re likely to be forever marooned in a cycle of money-spending to fuel your improvement within the sport. Races …

A bowl of beef noodle

There’s a romantic vision of road cycling. With its layers of history and culture, a key part of becoming a road cyclist is prescribing to the norms and traditions surrounding the ride. There’s a lot to it: Unsolicited Eddie Merckx references; Campy Super Record; understanding the otherworldly “supple feel” of tubulars; greasing your chamois vs. …