12 Days of ’Toonsmas: Day 5

I’m shocked — shocked! — to learn the price of an e-bike.
From the May 2019 issue of BRAIN.

If this one feels a bit like the last one, well, I was trying to match the ’toon with its issue’s theme, which happened to be (wait for it) e-bikes.

Plenty of people who should know better (some adventurous cyclists among them) think $1,500 is a lot to pay for a bike you don’t have to plug into a wall socket at night. And I’ve talked to more than one velo-curious person who thinks a third of that sounds about right.

So I was speculating how that sort of customer might react upon learning the price of a decent e-bike from the corner IBD.

And you know me — ever-ready with a cheap gag (rimshot).

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13 Responses to “12 Days of ’Toonsmas: Day 5”

  1. Dale Brigham Says:

    From Beautiful Lubbock, TX — Merry Xmas/Happy Hanukkah/Joyous Kwanzaa to All Fellow Cyclists!

    As usual, I am late to the party, but I want to chime in on the Unified Bike Theory, AKA One Bike to Rule Them All. Patrick, my lad, you have to get a Soma Pescadero (the “Fish Monger”) and build it up to your specs. Mine is just as you described your dream bike would be, except mine is 8-speed bar cons with a Sugino triple (just because those are things are so unhip).

    I have an IRD compact double (46/30) on a different bike (a Handsome Bridgestone X-O clone with 26″ wheels, for gawd’s sake! Probably unrideable in this epoch!), and it is indeed a very tidy, pretty crank. Needs a long BB spindle (118 mm or more) because the arms are at a full right angle to the spindle (not angled out like on “modern” cranks), and you do not want the arms to hit your chainstays. The 30/34 you would have as a low gear will get your fit, Irish carcass over most road lumps. I continue to be ever more gravitationally challenged year by year, so I had to go for a triple up front.

    Just want to say how much I enjoy reading your notes, Patrick, and those of all of the Mad Dog contributors to this blog. Muchos Gracias, Cyclismos! (And, Patrick, get the freakin’ Pescadero!)

    Dale in Mid-MO

  2. khal spencer Says:

    Great cartoon. Thank you! And merry Christmas Eve to all!

  3. Pat O'Brien Says:

    You know what the Professor says! Meanwhile, the smarter half and I are going over to a buddy’s house to eat, drink, play guitars, and generally realize how lucky we are considering what others in the world are dealing with. Especially in Venice. They’re sinking.

  4. DownhillBill Says:

    Encountered a couple of guys recently who were riding identical – wait for it – electric fat bikes. Turned out one of them was fighting pancreatic cancer and his buddy was being supportive. I’d previously met a DIY type on the same trail riding a recumbent trike to which he’d added a repurposed treadmill motor. He’d had some cardiac issues and used the motor for assist on hills. All were about my age, but just not as lucky. IMO these sorts of uses are great. Naturally, there was also a young healthy looking guy one day who was complaining that the rental e-bike was too much work and not fast enough.

    • SAO' Says:

      Pretty much my experience. I keep reading about folks trying to pose as racers while letting the batteries do all the work, but I’ve never met any of them in the wild.

      If you count my latest best friends that I meet on the New Belgium patio on Bike to Work Day mornings, I guess I know a hundred or so e-bike owners. And they’re all folks just trying to get through the day.

      Then again, maybe free breakfast burritos and beer-mosas attract a different crowd?

      Two wheels good. Doesn’t matter if your riding a banana seat, got baseball cards in your spikes, streamers on your handlebars, or you’re getting a little push from Brother Bosch and his lithium ion buddies.

  5. Larry T. atCycleItalia Says:


    • SAO' Says:

      That’s not an article about the failure of the e-market. That’s an article about how PR flacks don’t know they’re own biz demos. A HD dude on a plug-in is about as bad a fit as putting twin turbos and dual exhaust on a Prius. Carhart doesn’t make My Little Pony leisure suits and you don’t go to Whole Foods for a 55 gallon drum of genetically modified high-fructose corn syrup.

    • Herb from Michigan Says:

      Isn’t the whole point of a Harley to make as much irksome noise as possible? Otherwise you ride a Gold Wing. So on the electric Harleys do they pipe in the rumbling VROOM soundtrack so you can impress (or scare the shit out of) any pedestrians or bicyclists? Especially around 2 am after the bars close.

    • khal spencer Says:

      An overpriced product for a nonexistant market. Well, Larry. We know what your wife says…

  6. SAO’ Says:

    Maybe the dude in the grey tee will get an e-bike under his Saturnalia tree?

    We scoff and mock … but somewhere, in a San Francisco coffee shop, two bros are sketching up their plans for an e-bike with a vape pen charging mount on the top tube.

    • JD Dallager Says:

      SAO’: Who is it please in that SF coffee shop? I’ll invest!!! 🙂

      Stay safe, never stop exploring, ride on, be healthy, and Happy Holidays to all!

  7. khal spencer Says:

    Annie the crazy mutt looks a lot like this one. She is probably part chow too.

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