Monday, November 19, 2012

Rolling to enlightenment

Much like a busiest monk stuck at the airport, we here at drum are also on the path to enlightenment... Or perhaps just lost again?

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Bike as cart.

Moving big boxes filled with whatever Drum has been slinging online can be an adventure. This morning Drum's resident delivery boy got the call to bring the bike around to the back door of the lab, where he was presented with a sweet wheel set headed to the 'live free or die or tie dye' state. Needless to say, it was a bit bigger than his pannier, and with no porter rack (the springer front end makes such a rack a bit difficult to install) he had think on his feet. Wielding only a ratchet strap our delivery boy was able to, in the words of Tim Gunn, "make it work."

With no access to his seat or steering, we had the strange feeling that he would be unable to ride this steed into battle. Hell, we're STILL not sure how he managed to turn the damn thing while pushing it! But push it he did, dragging that beast left and right! Slapping it on the keister, calling it names like a cheap porn star, and all of this only to have to dodge a chick on a fixie while crossing at the cross walk. My god woman - brakes ain't that expensive!!!

Surviving this mishap our young go getter was lucky enough to find an empty bike rack where he could lock his cart. See, here in Chicago there is many a bike rack filled with unwanted or perhaps just unused bikes. Some bikes with tires and some without tires, or a seat, or handle bars. The next leg on his adventure was the usual waiting and waiting and waiting some more in the never ending USPS line. So instead of describing the lady that sighed every two minuets or the guy on his phone talking ten decibels too loud we'll just say it was an average day at the post.

Back at Drum HQ, a few hours after his departure we received our electronic delivery conformation number, proving once and for all that our intrepid delivery boy did indeed survive this five block jaunt...guess we'll have to make it harder next time. Experiences like this make owning a cargo bike seem like a great idea, not only for packages that are a wee bit too big for our standard bike but also to give us an excuse to build a custom cargo compartment for taking the shop dog out on rides!!! Betting his 90lbs won't effect the handling as much as some of the cargo we've seen people hauling around.

We think Steve Dog is ready for some high speed bike action!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Last chance beach.

Team drum decided to spend the day at the beach. Ended up being the end of the world. Oh well...

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Review!: The last ride of the Dispatch Slim Pant (V1) by Nonetheless

Let's start this off on the right foot, we love these pants but Nonetheless is running out of stock on the first generation (V1) and  currently has no plans on manufacturing them again has plans on releasing a V2 some time in the fall of 2013.  Thus, much like a classic western, they will likely be riding off into the sunset never to be seen again only to come back for a sequel; stronger, meaner, and perhaps fallen out of love with their previous paramour, dog hair. Now that we have that out of the way, onwards and upwards to the review!

A little about these pants:

They're made of a fancy-dancey wool/recycled bottles(PET)/spandex mix that will stretch with you and keep your stink down. The wool/plastic bottles material adds a nice feel, the wool seems to be high quality and doesn't itch the way cheap wool can, and they don't chafe like cheap polyester does.
Also, they have six deep pockets...two of which are super secret hidden pockets like James Bond would have if he was ever being a secret agent on an Aston Martin bicycle. The super deep pockets are great at keeping our change and phone IN our pocket while peddling along. And the hidden pockets are super sleek and work great with our new Cathrinette card wallet.

Only down side that Team Drum has found so far is that they attract dog fur like a bastard and, like all wools, they pill a bit. For more fun facts about these pants check out the Dispatch Rider Pant web page.

Ok. What else?

They are SLIM cut which won't work for everyone but it does keep the pant leg out of the way while you're riding. And be warned, if you stuff too much junk into your pockets you'll look like you're trying make, um, "it" look bigger than it really is.

Since they were designed for commuting by bicycle this leads us to believe that they will be tough in all the places your standard Levis are weak. As professional dog herders we will put the durability to the test while riding, walking, bending, squatting, and getting more drool on us than your average office worker. (If you get drooled on at your work place by any humanoids please speak with your HR department.) If we had to guess we'd say these pants would make a great three season (spring, summer, fall) addition to your wardrobe. They look sleek with t-shirts, flannels, and even as dress pants with a button-up...they were designed for the office after all.

After two weeks we are in love but love is a fickle beast so check back in a few as we will be adding on to the review after we spend more time with these pants.

*Oh yeah. We here at Drum purchased all products in this post because we wanted to. No one gave them to Drum, and we are just reviewing 'cause that's what you do on a blog. You review, give info to the people. Drum likes to be helpful. If we ever DO get free stuff, which would be kinda' cool, we'll tell ya.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

It not like we're naming your kid.

Naming your car, dog, cat, kid, or bike all have the same basic idea. You want to find a name that reflects what their personality is, will become, and may have been before you came into the picture... kids are probably excluded from this but maybe not, depending on your line of thinking.

For kids, cats, and dogs this can be a bit difficult as we are expected to come up with a name out of thin air, and who knows what these little monsters will be become! With a car or a bike one can take their time and get a feel for their specific personality. The guys over in the Drum psychiatric ward feel that this is due to the fact that bikes and cars are technically not living, breathing entities that need a name for us to feel "normal" when interacting with them. Saying 'where the hell is my bike' is much easier than 'saying where the hell is kid number one'... though we did have a dog on our route that we named 'third dog', but that's another story altogether.

So team Drum is living with our 1950 Schwinn Panther and allowing a name to come from our trials and tribulations together, organic like. Thus far we are pretty sure its a boy, though it does have pink fenders...hmm. It is also fearless of parked cars, dislikes other bikes with no brakes, and loves to sunbathe. Not sure if it likes crappy TV(drum doesn't have a TV) but Zombie movies and Westerns are a weekend must - along with a long ride down by the lake.

Guess time will tell!

Now I'd like to hear if your bike has a name - tell us about it in the comments section!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

A belated Halloween scare.

Picture a gray, chilly Halloween morning in Chicago - you're in town, away from home, and have crashed at your buddies abode.  Ya wake up late and your day is getting off on a good foot.  Then there is a commotion at the back door.  The dogs are stuck in bat shit crazy mode, the alarm is screaming 'Back Door Open Back Door Open' and you hear someone talking in an excited voice.  All the while you're stuck on the crapper having your morning Deuce.  So, what are your options in this rather compromising position?  Well, as we here at Drum have spent the day discussing and concluded that you have only two courses of action:

  1. Cut bait, disregard wiping, hustle your ass out there and see WTF is going on. (Pants optional)

  2. Finish what you started, tidy up and calmly leave the lavatory to see WTF is going on.

Either way your morning has just been screwed, the "you" time of the day has now become the "oh shit those dogs are losing their mind what is going on" time.  Heck, if you were backed up this may have even be of some help.
Well Mr. Mister did finally come strolling out, wearing pants thank god, and much to the surprise of team Drum.  We don't usually check the crappers upon entering the locations one of our dog wrangling jobs...but we might have to start.  Only thing that came to mind to say in greeting was, "Here to walk the dogs, Happy Halloween!"  Might not have been our best line but what do you say on such occasions?  

On other notes Halloween was day two of testing for the Nonetheless Compound Neoshell Weatherproof Jean and lucky for us the weather man called for 47 and windy.  Thus we tossed on our soft shell, wind stopper gloves, ear muffs, and off we went to herd dogs.  Well, after all our preparation we sure felt like wusses when we encountered a fellow bicyclist out for a ride in jeans pegged at the knee, thin stockings, a cardigan, and some plumbers crack.  Chilly...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Odd it is.

This nifty little sign was posted upon one of the local Chicago public school football stadiums. From what we can gather they are worried that your pup may get some nasty nasty from the stuff they spray on the field's grass to make it nice and green. What's confusing is that they seemingly have no concern with local kids being squished into this same grass during games. We love our pups here at Drum, like little furry kids to us they are, but wouldn't be in the best interest of the public school system to protect the creatures they are trying to integrate into our society?

Just something to ponder on.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Bicycles and sewing go together like Peanut butter and Jelly?

The other evening Mrs. Drum was nice enough to show us here at Drum the basics of sewing machine usage.  Now we wouldn't say we KNOW how to sew after a few days of piddling around with the sew machine,  but this new skill opens a world of making our own bicycle and life accessories!  Or possibly our own line of Drum bicycle apparel.  No more depending on others, we're going DIY!   Unfortunately it is all too easy to believe that perhaps there will be a few set backs on the road to world domination. For instance, the card wallet/pocket we made this morn' was a bit... ill conceived.  It worked, but bound for years of use it was not.  So perhaps we'll take it slow and see how it goes before we start thinking were the next Vaya or Gucci.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Live from Heritage: Bicycle Film Fest Brunch

Come on down to Heritage General Store for some free food, music and great coffee! Located at 2959 N. Lincoln Ave, Chicago IL

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Brunch tomorrow!

Just a reminder the Bicycle Film Festival is still going on tonight and tomorrow here in Chicago.
Tomorrow there will be a brunch at our favorite bike/coffee shop Heritage General store located at 2959 N. Lincoln Ave(9am-1pm).  So get your asses up and bike on over.
Here's a little article from the NY Times about getting around in the aftermath of Sandy by bicycle.  Be sure to give it a read if you haven't hit your 10 artical limit.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

On the roll: post from the streets of Chicago

Hate when the kids swipe only the left side, just kills the aesthetics of a car... so unbalanced.

Communists Utilitarian Bikers of America

There is a certain slice of American biking soicety that seems to see the bicycle as a truely utilitarian method of transportation, similar perhaps to the communist thought that making a car cheaply would make it reliable.  From our diligent observations here at Drum Chicago, this sub sect of the biking community has little to no regard for the aesthetics of the rig which they pedal on a daily basis or, for that matter, the basic maintenance on said rig.  To wax poetic, perhaps these are the true "bicyclists", with no worry about whats cool or how fast it goes, just that it take them from point A to point B and perhaps even on the correct side of the road.  Because to them it doesn't matter if that rickety piece of crap is taking them to the grociery store, a socialist meeting (yeah we know that socialists and communists ain't the same, did you?) or the crack house, as long as the chain don't break its all good.
So today we salute the communist utilitarian bikers of America and declare that  hence forth November 1st will be know as Communist Utilitarian Bikers of America Day.    So Ride your bike that's too small, with your crusty derailers, one knoby and one smooth tire all over this fine country, and ride it proud!  And when some snot nosed kid on her/his super slick bike purchased with mommies money gives you guff... Tell 'em to piss off and that the gals/guys at Drums said this was their second favorite holiday of the year... just behind talk like a pirate day.