We are diving into the holiday season here, and in the northern hemisphere this is a time for reflection and introspection, of gathered family and friends, of shorter days, longer nights, colder weather, shorter rides (and cyclocross! Some may think of the whole chestnuts roasting by the fire metaphor when they think of this time of year, but for us, it’s about the heady whiff of embrocation and the eternal quest for just the right tire pressure to rail the mud of Koksijde), and, increasingly, an intense blitz of pressure to buy things. Logically, being a brand that sells things, we should also be jumping on this runaway locomotive and drowning you in a sea of emails beseeching you to Buy More Things. We like it when you buy our things. It helps us keep the doors open, and we honestly believe that our components will make your riding experience better.
But we also know some elemental truths. We know that a quick ride on a cold day will clear the head better than sitting around the dinner table arguing with your second cousin about voting district gerrymandering. We know that a shared ride with friends will warm your heart. Even when it is raining, even when the headwind seems to come at you in every direction (big friends are good to hide behind on those rides). We know that riding, more than buying things, is what really makes you a better rider. The more you ride, the better you ride. Shiny new bike parts can certainly put some snap in your sprint, but the real gains are found in a deeper place where 20% off coupons are not common currency. We know that going for a ride on clapped out old gear is going to generate a whole pile more feel good endorphins than not going for a ride at all. And we know that waiting around for bike parts because of some global supply chain nightmare that does not seem to have an end in sight is insanely frustrating – but it’s also about the worst excuse ever for not riding.
So this is what we wish for you this holiday season: That you find the time to ride. With friends, by yourself, in good weather and bad. That you revel in the pure joy of moving across the ground with your body turning all that turkey and stuffing into speed and heat. That you experience the soul cleansing purity of sore muscles and a good sweat, and that this balances out all the noise and clamor. That you remember what is true.
True to your ride – we’ve been pushing that slogan for a long time. It’s an integral part of what drives us to make better bicycle components. But it’s bigger than that. It’s about honoring the purity of the experience of riding bikes. It’s about respecting the beauty of this sport that we share, and that we share in so many diverse ways. It’s about keeping the flame alive when the weather turns shitty and the excuses to not ride pile up faster than the leaves (or snow) falling in the yard.
We are true to your ride. And we hope that this holiday season you find ample opportunity to remain true to your own ride, however you ride. And for all the soul gazing that we just engaged in, we also hope that your backordered parts arrive. Stay true, enjoy every ride.