urban outfitters + fixed gears = ugh

July 17, 2009

another chunk of my thoughts as reposted from The District’s staff blog:

Remember back in 2007 when those Middle Eastern scarves went from political symbol to fluorescent-terrorist chic in about a month? That was Urban Outfitters. Or last year when assholes with perfect eyesight started wearing giant black-rimmed glasses without any fucking lenses? That was UO, too. And, now, everyone’s favorite corporate purveyors of ignorant hip has done it again, simplifying the urban bicycle subculture into a re-appropriated accessory and selling the watered-down image of integrity to anyone with a credit card. May they present, the Urban Outfitters Bike Shop.

In light of fixed gear bicycles’ popularity growth in the last year, Urban Outfitters has teamed up with Republic Bike (or, rather, allowed Republic to sell their only model—the Aristotle—through the UO website) to bring the joy of track bike customizability to those who need the image boost more than a worthwhile bicycle.

For only $399 you can have the bike company’s only offering (a front-and-back-braked bare minimum bike with a flippable fixed/freewheel hub and one name-brand component) custom built per your selection of their awkward color options (lime green frame, Fallujah-sunset orange rims, canary yellow chain and dirty-ocean blue handlebars?) and shipped to your door within the week along with whatever leather man-satchels and acid washed skinny jeans you threw in your online cart.

Or, you can do some research and discover that real track bikes are more expensive (and don’t weight 24 pounds) because they are meant to be ridden more than during a catalog photo shoot by a girl wearing leather ankle boots with six buckles apiece and have a cultural history behind them that stretches far beyond what Urban Outfitters could print on an informative price tag. Maybe this bike is a good place to foyer yourself into being a “fixie kid” if you don’t know any better, but ask anyone working at a bike shop about your siqq Wasabi-colored Aristotle and you’re another rolling cliché with a newfound attitude of righteousness giving the community a bad rap. Urban Outfitters can’t make you a fixed gear rider anymore than Hot Topic can make you punk—they just sell the image. Wise up.

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2 Responses to “urban outfitters + fixed gears = ugh”

  1. derp said

    oh yea cuz riding a TRACK bike on the STREET is oh so practical in the first place..

    face it, fixies are only hip because they are easy to keep tuned and cuz of the aesthetic

    this is just the logical next step

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