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Fuck It! I’m Moving to Portland.

January 18, 2011

Year two of Bikefag has seen me timidly peeking around my veil of snark and denigration to expose a tiny glimpse of my “real” self.

It’s sort of like I’m the Afghan girl from the National Geographic cover – except the Soviet Occupation of Afghanistan represents, in my case, the over-saturation of fixed-gear “bike hipster” culture.  And the Pakistani refugee camp where the photo was taken represents the pracarious “freedom” I’ve found in “serious” cycling.

While Sherbat Gula is on the run from real danger, I am running from the spectre of “being uncool.”

Nevertheless, I think it’s necessary to step out from behind my wall of pretense, and “get real” with you.

I long to be free of the separateness from my fellow cyclist that has long plagued me.  I dream of a land where I can be “one of the crowd” – but without having to sell all my ironic cycling kit; without really changing at all.

I want to “go home,” to a land where I’ve always belonged:

Portland, Oregon!

Don’t worry, reader.  I realize that “moving to Portland” is “so 2006.”  I understand that the competition for barista jobs is cut-throat; and that “being able to make a rosetta” is the Portland barista equivalent of executing a shaky trackstand on a brand new Urban Outfitters “fixie.”  I realize that the cyclocross field sizes are astronomical, reader. That the “bike hipsters” quit fucking around years go and are all racing in the elite field now.  And, most importantly, I’d like to confirm that I have seen the Portlandia trailer!

I accept that I’m a cliché for moving to Portland at this point, reader.

But you know what?

Fuck it!  I’m moving to Portland anyway!

And really, apart from having to leave the “small pond,” and Portland’s terrible weather and the sting of being “too late in the game” of moving to the “coolest city in America” (which is now, of course, living half-time in Austin and half-time in Minneapolis) – other than that, there’s pretty much no reason why not to move to Portland.

It’s my favorite city in American, and I’ve pretty much been to them all.

Oh wait, there is one reason not to move to Portland:

I don’t have a job!

The general consensus among unmotivated liberal arts majors with insubstantial resumés is that “it’s impossible to get a job in Portland.”

But I can’t believe this.  If you’re dogged enough, and willing to work a shitty enough job, you can always find employment.  But an even better way to find a job, is to have friends.

Help me, reader!

If you or someone you know lives in Portland and can get me a job starting in April, please drop me a line.  I have experience in the following fields:




-Record stores

-Lackey bitch work

I’m very good at everything I do, reader, and would certainly make a great ironic personal assistant.

Also, if you’re reading this and you’re the editor or publisher of a rust-belt mountain bike magazine or its sister publication, please hire me on staff before I do this!  I don’t want to starve to death!

I figure that making an announcement like this on my blog can’t get me any less employed in Portland, so what the hell.

I call on you, beautiful rose people!  Help a fellow bike fag out!

7 Comments leave one →
  1. January 27, 2011 8:09 am

    My dearest and potentially most “lifetime” friend Marta lives in portland. next time you see me do let me connect you with her likeliness.

  2. January 27, 2011 9:50 am

    Nice Post! Good luck with the transition, even if the place is so five years ago. Past thirty the feeling that one’s out of touch with the cutting edge of the avant-garde unfortunately becomes more and more familiar, though resignation to that truth usually takes a bit longer, I guess. But the ability to experience it all with ironic distance is a talent not too many people are endowed with. Stay ironic and it will all be fine. I just have to wonder what this is gonna do to your writing, how this will warp your perception; snarkiness, I suspect, may well fall to the wayside.

    It’s nice to finally post here, I’ve felt intimidated until now by the majesty of your blog. I first stumbled across it while searching for Dura Ace 9 speed info a little while back. I loved that post especially, because it showed such a rich combination of faginess and seriousness as a rider.

    Refelecting on the aborted theme of the “next fixed gear” I had a thought a couple of months back, or rather a vision that came to me one sunny Berlin morning. I saw this pretty serious looking city rider cruising through light traffic on a mid-level 80’s racing bike with a cassette, derailleurs,etc… hunkered down over tri bar extensions. It looked so right, so preposterous, and seems like this could be a perfect short-term answer to the perennial question. Applied to all sorts of bikes they can completely change our perceptions of the rider, who cuts a dramatically different profile when using them. These posey, aerodynamic and dangerous add-ons can make banal city riding a technical challenge, and unlike the “Bahnrad ohne Bremsen” are even legal on the streets of Berlin. They might be just what we need to tide us over till the next big thing, which I think could take a few years, as any detox usually does. But it will probably never be anything more than a micro trend, never achieving the totalizing monism that the track bike has become.

    Let me know if you’re ever over in Europe and I will style you in Berlin, possibly even with some part-time work popping beers open at a table tennis bar (Dr. Pong), or an art bar (Kim).

  3. Grace permalink
    February 3, 2011 9:08 pm

    Oh my God! DB! Let’s please just move to Berlin together and live there instead of Portland. Best invitation ever!

    • bikefag permalink*
      February 3, 2011 10:39 pm

      Not sure if I’d be able to get a visa what with the whole “legal troubles” matter…

      • Grace permalink
        February 5, 2011 3:31 pm

        We can stay for 90 days at least.

  4. sam permalink
    February 21, 2011 7:07 pm

    Move to Lawrence.


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