Category Archives: beer

a tree falls victim to drunken office chair riding

there will be a photo filled post of the Invasion of the Tourists alleycat very soon! There would have been one today, but an unexpected ride last night with new friends put the kabosh on that, but stay tuned! there’s lots of great pics and of course the announcement of the fastest person in key west!

and now a short rant about irresponsible office chair riding:

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Sights like this are sobering and scary. Drunk kids, maybe all hopped up on meth or coffee (or both!) joyriding and endangering the citizens and trees of our quaint and quiet little island. I really hope nobody was injured and the tree will continue to grow and be healthy. I also hope enough people saw this carnage to help others from making the same mistakes.

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Pollard caught a shot of the same mess in the daylight and emailed it to me with the subject, “Seating apparatus violence up in the Keys‏.” It is frightening to think about how many people could have been crushed under that massive branch as it fell from the traumatic impact of the office chair.

Piers and Beers II (last week!) not to be confused with two weeks ago or tonight! (ha! all that was written over a week ago, so 2 is three and stuff)

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Pollard and I flashing the K W, a hand gesture popular with the fixie gangs of the island. Word life.

I almost decided not to write a post, but only a really, really long title; but alas, I cannot insert photos into the title area; and what would a KWVelo post without photos be like? I’ll tell you. It’d be like a post with no run-on sentences or blurry photos that is written well. That shall not happen tonight; its late, I’m weeks behind on writing, its raining, I need to shower (which will be fun in the rain), I am tired and don’t feel like writing a whole lot. Here’s some pictures:

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We’ll start with Mike’s underwear. Yep, this blog has sunk to new levels of WTFness. This seemed funny at the time. Hopefully it”ll be funny tomorrow morning.

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Pollard has grown a tradition of doing a crazy trackstand at every ride. There’s another shot of him on the Simonton Pier a few posts back and I would hyperlink it if I wasn’t concerned with making this an exceptionally crappy post unto itself!

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The Western Union and the Moon. Can you guess which is in dry dock and which is a celestial object? I knew you couldn’t!

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Horray for Republic Underwear! Well done Mike! I hope, no… I expect and endorse, that someday this image becomes as iconic as The Kramer. This photo facinates me into realms of mispellings. The cigarette, the socks, the look of a disgruntled factory worker toiling away 12-16 hours a day; this should be on the freakin’ cover of Life. Well, if it still exists!?!? Does it? Are those shorts. short pants, coulottes or Gauchos?

Well, all the above was written a weeks ago and here I am now; hours away from tonights’ ride. Last week was St. Patty’s Day and my birthday and the two year anniversary of Fixed Gears and no ride. There’s a bunch of sweet photos from other rides I need to post…and will….on island time. Manana. or next week. wheneva. Anyways, we’re riding at 10pm, come on down to the shop 945ish for air and lube. or buy shit and make the bossman proud of me. or not. lets just ride and await pollards trackstandstarness for the night.

Piers and Beers

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There’s a jolly group of us who frequently embark upon late night rides we call “pier tours.” We tend to ride to a bunch of piers, beaches, lanes and generally have some fun just pedaling around with lose goals of where to go. A few weeks ago we decided to make it kind of official and invite people and call it Piers and Beers. Six showed up, all on fixies; which was not planned; but certainly was fun!

The Wednesday game plan is arrive at Fixed Gears @ 421 Simonton between 930pm and 10pm for air and chain lube, leaving at 10. We try to finish up at Finnegans’s Wake at midnight to catch the late night happy hour and 1/2 price veggie menu…which is hella bangin’. Its been all fixies so far, which we all like, but freewheels won’t be turned away…just harassed. We ride pretty fast so cruisers and mountain bikes would not be too much fun! And really hard to ride backwards. Other, more inclusive rides are being planned, so don’t hate…just get a fixie!

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We keep changing and adding rules and ideas about where to ride. Presently, there’s a deck of badly handdrawn cards of locations to ride to and we all pick one at the start of the ride and also pick the first spot to go. At the first stop someone “plays” their card (all are secret) for the next place. At the next spot, someone else plays their card and we go there. Sounds confusing? Well, that’s because A. its a constantly changing thing and we are confused ourselves and B. I did a shitty job trying to explain it.

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White Street Pier is closed, but we still ride to it and dream of riding out on it again soon. Actually, i am not sure anyone dreams about it, but we all agree that “Rip Rap Repair Job” is funny.

Anyways, grab your fixie, come on down to Fixed Gears for free air and chain lube and enjoy a few hours of pedaling with no particular place to go.

office chair all crashed up and sad looking on Truman Ave

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This is an example of when drunken office chairing goes wrong. We’ve all been a little irresponsible before, in our younger years with drinking and operating office chairs. Some of our three of four readers may remember the first office chair post advocating for cyclists to open their hearts and bike racks to our office chair brothern. But scenes like this are chilling.

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The beer can can be seen much more clearly in this photo from a different angle. Its obvious why this office chair was wrecked into the sidewalk and abandoned. I really hope nobody was hurt. Perhaps the real cause was a charging chicken, but I doubt that. I still wish to share the racks, roads and sidewalks with my office chair riding brothers and sisters, but we, as a family of green transportationists, must curtail this kind of irresponsible riding.

more exciting coca-cola crate pictures

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Cookies! I took this while camping at Burlingame State Park in Rhode Island and commuting to the beaches every morning. As seen here, the crates work quite well to carry an assortment of beach sundries including cookies. I really like cookies! The cool thing about camping here is Blue Shutters beach and miles of preserved beach are a free few minutes away by bike! Watch Hill, which will cost you $20-$30 to park a car for the day, is about an hour away pedaling casually and its free to lock up your bike! Very creative beach there too; there’s always some amazing sand sculptures, seaweed and stick sculptures and all kinds of other nice wierdness. Including fog! Many mornings we would arrive to thick fog, but as the sun rose higher, it’d burn away revealing a wonderful view of the ocean and surrounding cliffs.

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Firewood collecting in the Everglades and beer transportation logistics; a winning combination!! Wandering around, breaking large branches, on uneven, potholey rocks can work up quite a thirst! Luckily, it was possible to stay hydrated and collect firewood for the night’s fire. Or the afternoon’s smokefest to keep bugs at bay while cooking or engaging in other campwork.

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This isn’t my bicycle! Three or four years ago I had a great conversation with a woman I think was named Cheryl at the Parrot. Somehow bicycles and crates and baskets came up and she described the red crate on her rack. T’was the same one I had! She had also stuck some highly reflective stickers onto the basket which I promptly did to my own basket; it was a great idea!

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This is my bicycle at the Parrot! Woo-haaa! One night around this same time period, back when I was only visiting and had begun driving my van down I awoke very confused. I had slept in my van and my bike wasn’t inside! How did someone get inside and steal it with me in there too!?!? A walk to the Parrot for an afternoon beer solved the mystery. My bicycle was already there, waiting for me…still locked up from the night before…

sunday night pier tour

Four fixies decided to go for a nice Sunday night ride. Actually, there were to be six of us, but the Patricks were a no show. boooooo! They did join us afterward for beer and noshes at the midnight happy hour at Finnegan’s Wake. mmmm….wings with wasabi dipping sauce! The night began at Fixed Gears where we tightened chains, lubed links and topped off tires. Amy suggested a pier tour so we headed to Simonton Beach. It seemed like three of us were out to pop a tire that night with flagrantly flashy skidding. There’s a wonderful slickness to many streets when its wet here, making for some fun slalom skidding around obstacles and around corners.

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John decided trackstanding on the narrow Simonton Beach Pier wasn’t enough of a challenge, so here’s a pic of him doing it one handed. wooo-haaa! I opted for a backwards circle at the Duval/South Beach Pier.  Actually, the full, real name is Emma Carrero Cates Pier. She was a Key West City Commissioner for 18 years, helped preserve many beaches in Monroe County as well as being a large part of the creation of South Beach. Thanks Emma!

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Beware of Jumping Sharks!

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Never a dull moment in Key West, even if this pic looks totally casual; nothing exciting, just another day in the Conch Republic. Damn i love living here! Although, not a pier, we stopped at that little park thingee near Casa Marina, rode by lots of fishermen at the White Street Pier and ended the tour with a nice rest at the sanctuary pier. Well, i guess its a boardwalk through a tiny remaining wetland area, and it ends on a tiny beach; but we like to think of it as a pier; it is Key Wierd!

FREAKING COLD!!!!!

Ok, mother nature, we need to talk. First, it is Monday and quite sunny. Thank you. We all needed some sunshine! But i must digress, or be distressed, or just pissed about the weather yesterday. ARRRGGG!!
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I had to wear arm warmers and a hat inside the shop to keep warm. ARM WARMERS! They helped a lot and i hoped it would help sell some of the varieties we sell at Fixed Gears, but not too many people were out and about. Every time i had to brave the cold i had to add a scarf and jacket. I know what y’all nawtheners must be thinking about my 50 degree tirades, but it really is an issue in Key West. Very few places have heat, including businesses, schools and homes. There are emergency homeless shelters opening up. I have certainly lost my thick blood, but would still enjoy some crazy downhill snow hill biking with my friends back in Hartford, Connecticut. Bless y’all! That looked fun and I am sure I could survive if I wore most of the mountaineering and winter camping gear I have packed away.

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A lot of the bars here are pretty much outdoors and that makes drinking to forget about the cold kinda a lesson in futility. Jonathon was having drinking issues with a full face mask at the Alamo. We are still all getting drunk. And we are still all cold. Yep. Sooooo….  I’m not really sure where else to go with all that….

The BeatBikeBlog has some tips for winter riding that might help us here on the island, or at least make for some funny reading.

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Toubab Krewe did an amazing job keeping everyone at the Parrot warm the last few nights with beats and music that caused widespread dancing and dancing and happiness. West African music and southern rock!? I am not sure how to describe it except… GREAT! I missed seeing this band last year and I am super grateful I got to see them finally for a few sets. Many blessings on your tour and please return soon…especially if its cold!

Key West Hardcore recap

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Its August, its hot, the sun is intense…lets have an alleycat! Awesome idea!
Many thanks to Paradise Tattoo, Help Yourself, Fixed Gears, Bad Boy Burritos and Conch Traders for helping out with prizes and checkpoints. Also special thanks to Don’s Place, the last checkpoint/afterparty for the hook-ups!

DSC09773The race began at the White Street Pier.

DSC09776“Get ink at Paradise Tattoo 627 Duval” and Bucco was the guest artist!

DSC09778“drink the fresh, organic goodness they give you at 829 Fleming Street” which, of course is Help Yourself. Tampa Joe chugging a shot of almost frozen organic juice as Charlie and Robbie watch.

DSC09783“have fun under the Palm Avenue Bridge” Nobody knew which side of the bridge Ray was waiting at with his sharpee.

DSC09784Goodfellow stopped in the middle of the bridge, over the water, to check to see where the checkpoint was and then carried his freakin’ bike down the side rather than ride all the way around and saved some precious time.

DSC09793Brielle was not only first, not only on a mountain bike, not only riding on knobbies, but was almost 5 minutes ahead of 2ed place! She won new cruiser tires and a floor pump.

DSC09789Everyone post race showing off their tatoos from the checkpoint at Paradise Tattoo. Thanks again to don’s place for hooking us up and showing love.

more photos and shenanigans after the jump…click below!

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The Space Shuttle is in Town! and other wierdness

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Last Friday I caught a glimpse of what seemed to be the Space Shuttle driving down Duval Street. The spacecraft was a little smaller than expected; but the tail fin and color scheme is pretty dang recognizable. It must have been it, but I couldn’t get my camera out fast enough; that thing is a freakin’ rocket ya know. A few hours later I took the above picture, catching the ship moments after it safely stopped at a stop sign and continued along down South Street. I did see the Space Shuttle…

I did! I did!

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Houston, we have contact! I saw the Space Shuttle again, at 12:00, heading straight for me with nothing more than a mere double yellow line separating us from a deadly head-on collision! I quickly pulled over and parked my pedicab and snapped a few photos as the ship slowed and stopped next to me. The pilot said he saw me snapping photos earlier and asked if I wanted a postcard. Hells yeah! Nice people.

I learned that the Shuttlevan hangers in Texas and was built to celebrate 25 years of flight. There’s even a 1,700 watt fog production machine! Check the website!

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Six or Seven years ago I was riding my bicycle down Greene Street and strangely heard a piano approaching me from behind. I turned to see a man in the middle of the street alternately pushing a piano on wheels from behind and then playing it from the side as it rolled. I took a quick photo and have never forgotten the sight. I have no idea of the what and the why. A few days ago I saw what must be the same guy and the same piano on Duval! He wasn’t playing it this time, only pushing it down the street. I love this town.

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I saw these two Konas with crazy camo tires one night after sloppyhour. Pretty sweet.

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Another wonderful night at the parrot. John’s singlespeed and my fixie. Let the revolution begin!

Want more photos? More bicycles? Want to see the newest fixie on the island, built just days ago? And welcome a new Surly to the neighborhood, a sweet Traveler’s Check?   Continue reading

A Rollerskating Jam Called Saturday

Saturday, Saturday, it’s a Saturday.

5 whole days of work and one whole day to play

De La Soul knew what was up, but my pedicab shift on Saturday was the farthest thing from work and yet I got Paid in Full. The line between work and fun is completely blurred, perhaps even eradicated, on days like this.

I was craving sausage gravy and biscuits even before getting on the saddle and pulling out of Perfect Pedicab and onto Whitehead Street. A short ride across Old Town to my other job, at Turtle Kraals, ensured I was well fed thanks to my employee discount. Thrifty and tastey, yeah, that’s how I’m rollin’. Luann, the morning bartender, asked me to take her visiting parents on a tour later and paid me in advance. Sweeet. I hooked her up with a deal and left feeling good; not even 11AM yet and I already made bike rent. ahhhh, a great way to start the day.

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It was a super slow morning spent mostly at the South end of Duval on the Atlantic Ocean side of the island. This is a wonderful spot to chill, relax and wait for a fare. Lots of people walk the full mile and half or so all the way down Duval, to see the Southernmost Point buoy; and then feel all lazy about walking back. A ride in a pedicab, especially with cocktail in hand, is a wonderful way to get back to Mallory Square, Sloppy Joe’s or wherever you want to be next back in Old Town. Some say Duval Street is the longest mainstreet in the world as it streaches from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean!

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Jason and Pollard getting some needed rest. Friday was a looong night. The pictures in the background are by Bob. He spends the morning and afternoon painting as his artwork hangs behind him on the fence in the great gallery of the island shoreline. Dozens of people pass by every five minutes speaking in all sorts of accents and languages. The cool ocean breeze always compliments the contrasting rays of the strong tropical sun. There’s usually a few of us here reading, resting or entertaining ourselves and the tourists.

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Jeff’s secret to success…

the pig helmet cover!

So today is Thursday and I am trying to remember the details that made Saturday so amazing to finally finish this post. But I can’t remember the specific things, it was just a really great day. Sunny with a nice, cool breeze. Occassional white, fluffy clouds provided brief patches of wonderful shade. It began slow, but as it progressed, I got a lot of rides that were fun and tipped well. I had a great time bugging out and chillin’ with the other riders. Everything and everyone was just on the One.

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Kapsis the grinder giving his sweetie a ride home. These two are waaay too cute and in love. He’s always blowing kisses from his pedicab to her as she works at a restaurant’s outdoor patio. The Ohio boys and I passed them enroute to happy hour. Yep, most places here do happy hour seven days a week. And the bars are open to four. But’s that’s a whole other post.

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Happy Hour at Kelly’s. This certainly helped keep the great vibe going after work. Forget the fact it’s the original Pan-Am headquarters. Forget it’s owned by Maverick’s love intrest in Top Gun. Happy Hour is bangin’! $4 gets you a half dozen of some of the best wings on the island. $3 gets you a massive margarita. We had a lot of both.

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This is how I got my new printer home to Bahama Village from New Town without using my van.

A bungee cord held it in place. I could steer holding just the box, but that was kinda scary and i didn’t do it again. Ok, i did a few more times, and it was still scary! But, after living here since the first week week of January, I have only driven my van four times, three to go kayaking and once when I moved from Brian’s couch to my apartment.