Friday, December 19, 2008

Winter XO-1-Wonderland

I sometimes forget what a badass the XO-1 is.

It spends a lot of time in the warm basement, up on the workstand, where I ogle it between bouts of writing, studying, grading, and the occasional trip to the subterranean vaporizer alcove.

And so, because, rightly or wrongly, I treat it more as a collector’s item than a bike to be ridden regularly (and, in my defense, it is just a tad small), it rarely gets a chance to really strut its stuff. Jen rides it as much as I do, usually on special trips like to Filmed by Bike in Portland, or I saddle it up to use with the bike blender for an event like the Seattle Bike-In.

I suppose this is sad in a way—or at least sort of a shame for such a sweet-riding rig—but at least it’s loved, albeit not in the way you might expect for a bike so specifically designed to be an all-rounder/go-anywhere/do-anything two-wheeler.

So, it’s been a special delight these last few days to have it be my main snow rider. With 2.25” knobbies in the back and 1.25 road tires in front, it rides like a virtual snowplow. I’ve been able to crank pretty steadily up even the iciest of hills and have been able to slowly easy my way down all but the scariest of descents.

Its awesomeness is, I think, part of the reason why my practical joke of winning the December Greenlake Race succeeded; even I look fast on it.

Now, all this bragging will no doubt result in a glorious wreck, but so far, the only damage I’ve sustained is melted front brake shoes from slowing so hard, but I’ve replaced the old Dia-comps with some sweet new old-school Scotty’s that not only grip the rims just as well as my broomball shoes do the ice, but also look pretty swell, form and function being the operative theme with my badass Bridgestone.


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