Tour de farce

Editor of a new touring magazine? No, just another April fool. Photo: Herself

Editor of a new touring magazine? No, just another April fool. Photo: Herself

It was April Fool’s Day at yesterday, and as usual we managed to snooker a few people.

My contribution — an entirely bogus item about VeloNews launching a touring magazine, headed by yours truly, with accompanying website and online store — apparently caused a minor stir among some folks in that niche. It was a calculated risk, since I’m writing a piece for Adventure Cyclist magazine about my tour of southern Arizona and really don’t need to piss off anyone holding a checkbook. Happily, editor Michael Deme was a good sport about it, having published his share of April Fool gags over the years.

I can’t remember how long VN’s been pulling these pranks. They date back to the newsprint edition of the magazine, and Charles Pelkey guesstimates the tradition to be 17 years old at least.

My favorite gag remains the time we “fired” me and posted the news online. I still can’t decide whose letters were funnier — the outraged readers who were canceling their subscriptions or the O’Grady-haters who were saying, “About damn’ time!”

On an unrelated note, I stumbled across a Rick Bayless recipe for tacos de papas con chorizo y salsa de aguacate last night and cooked the sumbitch right up. It was both easy and delicious, and that’s no joke.


15 Responses to “Tour de farce”

  1. Craig Says:

    Patrick, be sure to let us know what issue of Adventure Cyclist your article will be in. That’s one issue I’ll be sure to buy.

  2. swell Says:

    What’s that mirror doing in your back yard? Is O’Grady truly “Through the Looking Glass” on this one?

  3. Ben S. Says:

    Funny, an April’s Fools bit that may be a viable business plan. Oh the irony if they make you editor! First article – “Suitability of Cross tires and gearing for loaded touring”.

    Yes the ‘fired’ gag was the best. Got me good. Happy post 4/1/10.

  4. swell Says:

    The article is drop-dead funny! Thanx OG.

  5. steve o Says:

    One of the best all-around 4/1 editions in ages.

    Chocked on a couple of Product Ws laughing so hard.

  6. khal spencer Says:

    I still think “Harvest of Shame” is my all time favorite.

  7. Doug N Says:

    The “Fired” gag got me too. It was just so…plausible.

  8. James Says:

    That’s is effing classic!!!!! Well, at least it wasn’t as damning to the media as that story about the Phoenix Coyotes/ManU ‘story’ that got past the editors of the Toronto Globe & Mail. That is all time!
    I love the comments to the story on VeloSchnooze…….hahahahahahaha

  9. Larry T. Says:

    The touring mag gag had me wondering — here in It’ly there’s a mag called CicloTurismo. Italians don’t “tour” in the way Americans think with loaded bikes and camping equipment. This mag is for the guys who ride bikes and enjoy the hundreds of Gran Fondo events held here most every weekend. They cover plenty of “crap to buy” but there’s lot more about cycling as something to DO vs most of the other mags for which cycling is all about SHOPPING for the most part. I wonder if, as the Gran Fondo idea catches on in the USA, whether a magazine like CicloTurismo could sell in the US? Interestingly the publishing company that produces it, along with sisters Bicisport and MTB seems to have zero web presence — if you want to read the articles you must pony up the 5 euros and buy a copy unless you can bum one off your friend. The April issue is more than 300 pages and on top of that is TIMELY — a printed magazine with reviews of Gran Fondo events (they’re critical too, rating the course, the schwag bag, the post ride food, etc.) that happened only weeks ago. Amazing when you consider so much print media in the US lets you read about the Tour de France in the fall issue with a cover date of October/November. The closest thing in the US is probably Adventure Cycling but they have conflicts since they market their own tours and mostly cater mostly to the loaded tour/camping crowd. CicloTurismo is truly different–there are tons of ads for hotels catering to cyclists, along with other services. Just another reason Italy is truly cycling heaven I guess.

  10. steve o Says:


    Yeah, that was a good one.

    Funny … the line about film canisters clogging the harvest equipment … wonder how many kids would even understand that one. Film canisters?

    Which made we wonder … without 35mm film, what are backpackers using for salt and pepper shakers these days? Probably buying a $9.99 set of ultra lightweight, corn-based plastic shakers from REI.

    Film canisters, record player needles, and those little yellow plastic 45 rpm converter disks … things that will really confuse the kids who open those time capsules in 2099.

  11. steve o Says:

    Mad Dog Poll: How many days until Patrick breaks down and gets an iPad?

  12. khal spencer Says:

    Ain’t it the truth, Steve.

    I have some film canisters in the Garage doing grunt work such as holding bearings, master links, and other small parts for the bikes. Back in my long ago and far away college days, film canisters were famous for holding medicinal items as well.

    Actually, still got a couple old film SLRs too dating from about 1976, a K1000 and a KM. They are built reasonably well and the lenses are beautiful. You heft them and they seem real. My new Canon stuff is so light it scares me.

  13. Patrick O'Grady Says:

    Ah, yes,

    Film canisters. Useful little containers, those. A guy could throw one of those a lot farther from a moving vehicle pursued by law enforcement than he could the average one-ounce Baggie.

    No film cameras around the DogHaus anymore, alas. I sold my venerable Canon A-1 with motor drive a couple years back and we’re all digital, all the time. My main shooter used to be a Canon PowerShot SD600, but the PowerShot S90 is fast displacing it.

    I kind of like my PowerShot S5IS, kinda, sorta, but I wish I’d gone for a real DSLR instead, like the Digital Rebel XSi. Dicking around with four rechargeable AA batteries is a pain in the butt. But you can’t stuff a Digital Rebel in a jersey pocket.

  14. chris Says:

    God, this April 1st for some reason I was thinking about my all-time favorite newspaper gag: the Gazump Tefaloon’s picture of Don Branning, corn-cob pipe clenched firmly between teeth, harvesting gherkins from the “pickle tree” across the street at Memorial Hospital.

    The best part was that the AP picked up the picture and put it out on the wire. The Greeley Trombone ran it – straight-faced – on their ag page.

  15. barry Says:

    So what if it took me a week and a half. The point is that I got around to trying out said recipe and it was as good as our humble narrator told us it was. Equally simple as well- just don’t go cutting the tip of your finger off while chopping onions like I did.

    Another fine recommendation O’Grady-san. Mercy bo-koops.

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