It had to happen :(

I’ve been in denial about it. Displaced the horror of the situation by pretending that probability theory may be looking the other way. Ignored the signs, or should I say grim portents. But really, deep down I knew that eventually this sad – nay tragic – day would fall upon us.

What can this event be I hear you cry? The Hedgehog Ringmaster losing his vocational status of “grudgingly employed“? Worse, far worse. A plague of genetically modified potatoes rising up from their soily graves and falling, locust like, on innocent people and property? I wish it were so, when compared to the uncleanliness of what I am about to share.

A long time reader, and someone I’ve been proud to call a mate for many years has GONE AND BOUGHT A BROMPTON. Yes dear readers, a man who bestrides the MTB world as cycling colossus -having earned his wheeled spurs riding fast and furious* – has traded it all in for the unworldly wrongness of Lucifer’s folder.

I cannot bring myself to name him. In case whatever infection he has clearly been infected spreads through the power of electrons. But let me just say, that only earlier this year he was chastising us all for not finding places where he could rip downhill on his VP-Free.

And now a Brompton. And probably cycling clips, a beard, hemp clothing and an unhealthy interest in calculating mortgage compound interest. It’s all downhill now** my friend, illicit subscription in “Which Folder“, Titanium Hinge Upgrades, Dynamo’s and the sharing of cheery hellos with others who’ve fallen under the spell of that bastard union between a shopping trolley and a blind welder amped up on crack.

It’s a sad, sad day here at the Hedgehog. I feel like holding a wake. Instead I shall be holding a glass later and toasting my dear departed buddy whose gone over to the “other side” 🙁

* and often upside down and lost in the trees.

** unless you’re on Satan’s Scaffold in which case I’d be inclined to carry it on the grounds it’s safer and quicker.

There’s some good news..

Its like that only blue
It's like that only blue

.. and some bad news. The good news is I completely failed to spend a number closely associated with the sound of a high velocity rolling pin connecting with ones wedding vegetables. The bad news is that I still appear to have bought a cross bike. Not a new one, not even close to a new one, but not one that has been ridden much either.

After the trauma of buying from a bloke in a shed, this time I’ve gone for a purchasing strategy involving someone I know. And not just someone, the renowned Seb Rogers of taking-fantastic-photographs fame. I’m giving him some cash, and his under stairs space back in exchange for a pre-love Kona Jake and a quick rag round some of his local (Mendip) trails.

The eagle eyed amongst you will notice a chainring count of ones less than optimal, and a rear cassette with cogs ranging from “small” to “dwarf”. So an ideal set of ratios for an area of the country that is reasonably well known for not being entirely flat.

Seb’s also throwing in the amusingly named “suicide levers” which may prevent almost certain death on the first off road descent. Yep, I’m definitely taking it off road, although my innate honestly forces me to admit that a) it’ll be lame off road and b) I’ll be going even slower than normal.

So does this mean the end of the trusty Roadrat? At 3000 miles and 28 months, it is both the longest serving and longest riding bike I’ve ever owned. Obviously in AlWorld(tm), this makes it just about the perfect time to sell it. Dunno tho, the Jake isn’t costing much, the Roadrat owes me nothing, and when is an extra bike ever a bad thing?

Still I may very well be hating everything duo-wheeled tomorrow after rotating up and down the Malverns with nary a tube. Fitting tubeless tyres wasn’t exactly difficult, but I hadn’t factored three tyre levers into the purchase price. One of which shattered in such a manner, I’m pretty sure there’s a bit embedded in my skull somewhere.

But it’s like the cross bike. I mean, really, what can possibly go wrong?