fiets cyclery

by Kyle Andries

Month: January, 2017

Remember, remember, 24rd of September… 2016

Happy new Yer

So everyone been bashing how 2016 was so wild and a rubbish year, my close friends in particular.

Yes, it was sad when they shot the poor gorilla – he was only trying to protect the little boy right? And yes brexit meant that I had to fork out an extra £200 when I went to purchase an iMac and now that dude with the blonde tupee might just fuck shit up entirely…

But I think 2016 was great – in fact, without sounding too sentimental or weird, it’s been one of the most important years for me. Towards the end of 2015 I ended up canoodling with Diane. It was something I always wanted to happen after we split at the end of summer 2014 and tbh I hadnt really moved on with my life. So when she started texting me again I was pretty over the moon tbh. Now I dont want to sound like a stuck record and end up writing about her or my life around that time too much, but I’d be foolish to pretend that she wasnt a big part of my life – having someone around for nearly 7 years isnt anything to sweep under a rug or something to dismiss so easily.

Anyway, so after 7 months we admitted that we’re really clutching at straws here and actually holding each other back. So in April 2016 we seperated once again, and to be honest this time the closure was somewhat of a relief. A bit like finishing a really good book, it was nice to bring an end to that part of my life knowing that we tried as best as we could.

It then transpired that at 26 I wasnt at all ready to settle down and get married, like quite a few of my friends are these days. In fact, I actually feel younger than I ever have, in a weird midlife crisis kind of way lol. The downfall of that is that I’m out partying with students and having to tell girls that I’m two or three years younger than I am… I mean I’m not ashamed, I just can’t be bothered to explain that I’ve been there, done that, learnt how to live on my own and cook my own meals. Compared to most new people I meet I like to think I have my shit together – or together enough anyway. It’s pretty hard convincing yourself you have your shit together when you’re driving up to Birmingham Friday night, get fucked up till 6am, drive (read: be driven) back to Bournemouth and then sleeping till late afternoon while ordering something from Deliveroo!

Sounds like the life right?….. Haha, it is!

But back to my point, I’ve done a shit load of partying in Birmingham this past year. Been reintroduced to the strange world of narcotics, started a decent vinyl collection, travelled to Barcelona and Amsterdam. And let’s not mention tinder lol…

These days it’s quite easy to get brought down by things going on around in the world. I mean it’s fooolish to be completely ignorant towards current affairs, but at the same time it’s so so much better if you don’t visit the bbc’s website, or take everything you read on Facebook as gospel. Out of site, out of mind i guess..

Surround  yourself instead with dank memes of Turkish men sprinkling salt on anything he can find, or great music instead. The world filled with corporate greed and aristocracy will still be there when you get back.

Now enough preaching, all the pics I’ve selected for this post was taken on one particular weekend. It pretty much sums up my 2016 really…. friends, vinyl, drugs, music, and a bunch of exploring.

Now I’ve pretty much written about all the above topics that made this weekend so fun, but there’s one I really want to touch on which I’ve never really thought I would three or two years ago.

It’s always been quite a taboo subject, but after the whole #savefabric thing with two lads dying in the nightclub, and after having spent some time in Amsterdam, I really think that our mindset towards drugs need to change. Especially in the media, and general public. Yes, not all people do drugs and the general concensus is that they fuck you up more than they do good, but I really think it’s irresponsible and so thoughtless to even consider closing an establishment due to the actions of those two boys.

Yes I’m about three months late and Fabric has reopened, though one thing I’m not sure has changed is the education that is given towards drugs. Over in Amsterdam, in the toilets there are posters on the walls in nightclubs that advise on what to do should you have taken certain drugs and the ones to avoid. They even advise that you shouldnt drink too much water if you’re on pills as your water retention is crazy high due to the increase in body heat etc etc… Does Talk To Frank tell you that? That’s a genuine question as I’ve never wondered over that side of the internet yet.

Though if you’re as interested in this side of life then I’d recommend you check the documentary on Netflix about DMT, which is a hallucinogenic chemical realased by the pineal gland, with links to spirituality and the universe bla bla bla mung beans and love – you get the idea…Of course that’s the super deep side of things and prolably way more than you’d need on a decent night out. I mean, Mike and myself managed 5 nights out in a row in Amsterdam just smoking hash..

That’s another strange thing about living in a less liberal culture… We all know that Amsterdam is famous for their hookers and cafe’s with full menus that gives exact details of what you’re buying and how it’s going to make you feel. Though back here I’m asking my friends to just “grab me a ten bag”… I ave no idea if i’m going to be hungry, happy, sleepy…. so you get what you’re given basically! Unless of course maybe the London guys are a bit more savvy to these things but idk.

Like everything though, take alcohol for example, I really believe that everything in moderation is great. For example, try a bit of weed when you’re fucked up on juice and you’re probably going to have a terrible time trying not to die lol.. Even try a very strong joint on your first few times and you’ll find yourself in your bedroom tripping balls and searching for “calming video” on yourtube… not that that’s directed at anybody in particular 😉

These things take time though, just like the first few time you tried alcohol and probably ended up being really disgustingly sick everywhere at the age of 14. It’s definitely having an open mind towards this though – dont just disregard it based on hearsay!

Going back to this goat weekend though, sorted visa details for that infamous Amsterdam trip, spent a good amount of money on vinyl records, had a few beers and great food with my brother Richard and then had one of the most incredible party’s till 5am the next day with my other brother Michael, with a nice joint to see us home while Matt drove.

As for the tinder thing? That’s probably a post for another time lol…

Stay safe out there shroom takers.


kaaaaaaandries goes hiphop!

Hey guys les do a bike related post…

As I’m sure you will have guessed by now, but this blog is kind of more general lifestyle based now, as opposed to being mainly about bicycles. But as I go further into this journey, I’m hoping that I can restore that balance a bit… Anyway, the last bikes you guys really know about is the roadies that I’ve been donning for the past 3 or so years.. What you didn’t know is that in between those times there have been jaunts with fixes, two in fact.

Around Halloween 2014 I was really bummed about my break up that I really had to put my mind and attention towards other stuff, as a form of therapy or distraction if you want to think of it that way. If I hadn’t I probably would have driven myself crazy rethinking how things could have been done differently – you know the way you think of things to say in an argument once the argument is over? And start kicking yourself cus thay come back you just thought of was way better than the one you used? lol..

But back to bikes, turns out I remembered I had this steel frame which I bought late spring that year.

Graham pls was the build of winter 2014, and thinking back now it was a great time despite what I’ve described above. Yes it was rubbish experiencing a break up for the first time, but I think that focussing your mind on a project was a better way of dealing with depression than the help that is made available these days. I’m not knocking what is on offer out there, but people cope with things differently and it can probably be put down to the fact that I’m super stubborn. I feel way more accomplished having dealt with that phase of my life in my own way, but at the same time I can see that it’ll probably land me in a whole heap of trouble if help is not asked for. On a related note, I’m actually experiencing something similar right now, but I’ll write more on that once i’ve worked things out or burnt myself out from overworking and stress 🙂 Perhaps even give the Steps to Wellbeing a try..

Where was I?

The bike ended up looking like this;

It was a real interesting project for me as I bought it on a whim after seeing the Graham Weigh name thrown around on lfgss a fair few times. There was no real information on the frame but when it arrived I could tell it was a really good’n by how light the damn thing was and the zing the frame made every time I pinged it with me figner!

All the other parts for the build I pretty much already had left over from my fling with the Langster. Actually, I lie… I only used the wheels from the Langster really, but what I mean is I bought some parts to be used when I had the Langster. Things like, Brooks B17 saddle, Windsor Nutter tool to strap onto the Brooke’s, Alpine seatpost, bargain handel bar and stem combo from Amsterdam and that was pretty much it – here are the specs

The bike itself was great to ride around on, though I’ve an ongoing thing with buying bikes that are far larger for me than they need to be. that lasted me until February when this happened;

And this is really where my slavery affair started. You can read about the whole unfinished thread here.

The Langster and Graham was really just my intro into how things should really be done and to date this luminous pink thing has been my favourite and easily the best bike I’ve had. It was a brief fling though, which carried my through the summer of 2015 and well into the autumn when my time in slavery was banished by a recovery vehicle, leaving me with a big gash in my head… …

The bike itself was great and the most fun part was really collating the parts and just the general journey it took me to get to its final stage as seen in this pic below.

Why was it my favourite?

Having spent a decent amount of time on lfgss, it became clear that just like any other hobby in the world (blog writing included I hope?), you get better as you go along.. I mean look at the very first bike I put together in 2011.. look at it haha – hideous thing!

Yves Lagalisse wasn’t a planned project. After Graham I tried out a few road bicycles, going back to me thinking that road bikes were great for winter training. I was wrong, and TBH I really missed riding fixed every day though – my commute at the time was roughly a 20 mile round trip. lol, I remember one particular ride we did (on topic of the road bikes)… it was me, Jacob, Daniel Mateus and Ben Ramshaw. I had just bought what I thought was a Concorde Aquila but it turns out it was just some fraudulent knock off that I bought from someone I know… I’ve never bought from this someone I know ever again! Anyway, that ride lol, we were only about 15 miles in and going up that hill from Ashley Cross towards Upper Parkstone and I was dead. Like properly dead. I was like wtf is happening, why do I feel drunk?! Haha the three dudes on the ride are now part of the KYCUVelo cycling team and guess who isn’t on said cycling team?! Pfff… I did remember later that night while walking drunkenly through Aldi that I had only had fish and kale for lunch earlier that day and was probably lacking in energy.. that’s what I told myself anyway!

Anyway, after the saga with the fraudulent Concorde, see link to build thread here, I called it a day… for now!

Back on topic though, I took a trip up to Bethnal Green to pick up the frame from a guy called Patrick who was riding a super nice Cannondale Track bicycle, in like a deep oak green colour. It was the weekend of valentines and I thought what better way to start a new love affair?! Only £160 as well… That same weekend I also bought an iPad Mini, so I was feeling proper pampered and loved lol.

The history of the frame is unknown, with links to French heritage but not a lot else can be found on the web. All I know is that it was custom made for a French cyclist named Yves Lagalisse, who I think turned into one of those guys who rides the motorcycle in front of the pack round the velodrome!

Because it was my first proper steel track frame, I was dead set on the components being nothing but approving of the infamous Hip Hop Slave Bikes / Hipster Sleds thread. I mean realistically it was nowhere near worthy of that thread, even reading page 2201 as I type this, but to me it had the basics and was good enough for my own hip hop needs. The spec was as follows;

The fling came to an abrupt end though on the eve of 12 December 2016 when a recovery lorry turned into my path, leaving me with no option but to hit it head first at approx 25mph – no helmet either… I consider myself very lucky and now cycle everywhere with a helmet on my head – that same one we used to stick the relay stickers to when racing at the Pier to Pier Relay. Currently, I’ve taken to stealing my partner in crimes Cinelli Gazetta, which was initially owned by Cardboard Coffee Gorge. lol, he hates me for it but I start Deliveroo in a few weeks, so I best get bribing him either with marijuana or perhaps even offer to cook for him to allow it to continue, until I find a suitable replacement of course…

But really I’m just waiting for the court case with said lorry driver to be finalised so I can receive the compensation for the replacement of Yves.

Perhaps that’ll be the time I go that next step further and build something actually worthy of donning the pages of the lfgss chat page.

Until then…