May 29th, 2012 by Biky Nick

The recent Facebook IPO fiasco reminds us that life is full of risks. Just as easily as Mark Zuckerberg having his personal fortune shaved down to a measly $15.8bn, we can have a close shave with a lorry, or, even worse, an actual shave on the tarmac. Quite like the Facebook IPO offering on its first day, expecting to ‘pop’ within hours, we may have set off on a glorious morning, thinking the day can only improve. When we find ourselves at A&E a little while later, we realise that falling can not always be forseen.

Overconfidence. Just like the overvaluation of the Facebook stock before launch, which was destined to prove fatal in the first few hours of trading, if we overestimate our cycling abilities, we are more likely to come off our bike.

Computer failure. Check your bike computer regularly for malfunction. Just like NASDAQ’s computer failure hampering fulfillment of share orders in the first half hour of Facebook going public, and the ensuing chaos to trade this caused, a bike computer displaying the wrong road speed, for instance, can impair judgement of your surroundings.

Pump and Dump. Just like Facebook attempting to flog 400 million shares where 2 million would have sufficed to glut the market, setting out for a 150-mile trip without being ready may see you plunge headfirst too.

‘Record Retail Demand.’ Facebook’s hype caused a lone stock buyer to think that they had company, in the same way they looked at their Facebook friend list and thought they were popular. We don’t fall for claptrap like that, which is why Nick’s Biky Shop is your one-stop shop for all your cycling demands. We don’t change the prices a few minutes after you’ve come in, and we’re not in thrall to the stockholders.

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Bikes in History — An Occasional Series

May 12th, 2012 by Biky Nick

An exciting discovery was made during marine excavations off the coast of one of the Papadapadopolopi Islands. Embedded within the context of a dragon-bottomed Neaporian merchant vessel, which had been carrying bottulae at the time of its shipwreck in 3732 B.C.E., an astonishing find emerged when one of the bottula sherds was lifted.
The below photograph shows the intricate gearing mechanism emerging. It is currently under expensive investigation in a tax-payer-funded laboratory where they have not a clue what it could be.
Biky Nick has a pretty good idea, though, but nobody’s even asked him for his opinion.

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Bikes in History — An Occasional Series

April 23rd, 2012 by Biky Nick

This image dating from the thirteenth century gives a graphic depiction of the fate of a bike thief who was caught red-handed.

An entry in Cobbett’s parliamentary history of England, from the Norman Conquest, in 1066 to the year, 1803 : from which last-mentioned epoch it is continued downwards in the work entitled, “Cobbett’s parliamentary debates” (which is now available on-line) reinforces the notion that perhaps in years gone by, bicycle theft was looked on slightly more negatively than in the modern age:

In a parliament held at London in 1246, some severe laws were made against such as robbed velocipedes or cyclettes. If the malefactor fled, and was killed in the pursuit, there was neither law nor appeal allowed for his death. If any earl, baron, or knight complained to the king that his velocipede were stolen, an inquisition was made by the king’s writ; and, if he that was indicted was convicted of the same, he was to lie in the king’s prison a year and a day; and to pay three years value of his estate, having just sufficient allowed out of it to maintain him; after which the king was to have two part, and he that received the injury one; then the convict was to find 12 sureties that he should never do the like again.

From Volume 01: comprising the period from the Conquest in 1066, to the death of King James the First in the year 1625 (Column 22)

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Bikes in History — An Occasional Series

April 22nd, 2012 by Biky Nick

This astonishing Attic krater is said to date to c.500-480 BC and depicts Ganymede coming to terms with the logistics of bird transport on his new machine.

The current location of this krater is at Villa Farnese, Caprarola, Lazio, in Italy, should you wish to visit and marvel at this sensitive depiction of a man and his bike, which, admittedly, looks a little old-fashioned to us now.

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