We're here at the International Moron Breeding Association annual meeting, and about to start a roundtable discussion on why we need to Grow the Sport (TM reserved IMBA) with Flow Trails (TM reserved IMBA) and generalized deference to land managers. I'm Biffington Barfwell III, your moderator for the discussion.
Seated around the table are the following luminaries of The Sport:
* Spike Grievey, Canadian citizen and click farmer, whom you may know as one of the editorial geniuses responsible for the global internet powerhouse stinkbike.com
* Snott Brownes, American citizen and general Pep Booster, whom you may know as a regular commenter at the aforementioned stinkbike.com and at second-tier internet outlet bridalmtb.com.
* Verdant Welkum, American citizen and sometime junior scrivener at the publication fatBIKE, whom you may know as an instigator of essential internet debates surrounding such pivotal topics as whether you should carry an artisanal flask of small-batch whiskey when you go for rides longer than 30 minutes from wherever you parked your Porsche SUV with KUAT rack.
* Blevins Razar, American citizen and ubiquitous trustafarian populating all the best (and even the best-est) forum discussions of mountain bikes on the internet, whom you may know from his copyrighted taunts, "I'ma roost yo faissss!" or "You're an idiot!"
* Joah Codminn, American citizen and renowned reviewer of all things MTB, whom you may know from his stellar shares of wisdom at twistergearrevue.com.
* Len Bairascz, Canadian citizen and general parts-spec guru at Cocky Fountain Bicycles, whom you may know from his authoritative posts at USNV.com.
* Korie Schwarzwald, American citizen, male feminist and territorial sales manager for Lavadome Bicycles, whom you may know from his profound online condemnations of anyone who isn't a progressive in political outlook.
We will open the discussion with a presentation from Snott Brownes. Snott, you have the floor.
SB: Well, tremendous thanks there, Biff, and I'm pleased and proud to be here among such stars of The Sport. Let me just start by saying I don't think there's a reasonable mind alive today who doubts that we need to GROW The Sport TM, and I don't believe there is anyone who considers himself or herself a mountain biker who would question the need for more Flow Trails TM. I think the discussion today should focus more on whether we can indeed Grow the Sport TM fast enough, or whether we can successfully replace all existing MTB trails with Flow Trails TM in time to please all the land managers throughout America. Verdant, what's your take on all this?
VW: Snott, I've been a journalist for a long time and I've seen a lot of stupid ideas during that time. One of the stupidest ideas was having trails that aren't immediately accessible to someone who is just learning how to balance on a bicycle. I have several friends who tried mountain biking back in the early 2000s, and they quit after 2 rides because the trails intimidated them. Clearly that's a problem.
LB: As a Canadian who would like to see his employer sell more bikes, I agree completely. For too long, MTB has been a small niche activity practiced by a bunch of filthy, low-class and generally poor-taste elitists who think that knowing how to balance and maneuver a bicycle is an essential pre-requisite to trail riding. We can forgive these ignorant cretins for their elitism since they're so unbelievably gauche and insensitive to the needs of Professionals who work 65 hrs/week or more, but we can't let them set the tone and tenor of The Sport any longer.
KS: I'd like to remind everyone how reactionary and misogynistic the sport has been since its inception. True mountain bikers are not elitist and they always vote Democrat. Anyone who doesn't vote Democrat is a reactionary misogynist who should be burned at the stake. And not allowed to ride MTBs.
SG: As one of The Sport's foremost click farmers, I'd just like to throw this thought out for everyone's consideration: would you rather have Flow Trails TM, or no trails? Would you rather Grow the Sport TM, or watch approvingly as the government confiscates everyone's bicycle after closing all trails to MTBs? These are our choices.
JC: I'd like to hear everyone's thoughts on working with land managers. As far as I'm concerned, we need to bow and scrape to every whim of the land managers, even when we suspect (probably because of undiagnosed psychological illness) that the land managers are behaving irrationally or making policy decisions without supporting evidence. As far as I'm concerned, they are the authorities, and we need to respect their authority and defer to them no matter what the issue. Otherwise, the land managers will begin to make policy decisions that might hurt The Sport. I don't think anyone wants that.
LB: This gets back to my point about the elitists and their lack of good breeding. They think that rabble-rousing, anarchy and violent revolution are the way to help maintain MTB access. I hope you see as clearly as I do that such attitudes are destructive and likely to result in lots of people getting hurt. Innocent people. Children, mostly. Think of the children, as they are our future. Anarchists deserve to be shot and/or tortured because they threaten the children. Thus, in order to save the children from being burned alive by the anarchist elitists who used to call the shots back in the early 2000s, we need to obey land managers, Grow the Sport, and build Flow Trails. Which will lead to more bicycle sales. Which will let me buy that second house my wife keeps nagging me about.
BR: I just want to talk about bottom bracket heights. I mean, what's the deal with those bikes that have BBs higher than 12" off the ground? I know one of the reasons why that happened and why it continues to this day is people being afraid of rocks, roots and ruts in the trails, but we're all in agreement that Flow Trails TM are the future and therefore we should have flat, smooth trails that let us run 11" BB heights, which will Grow the Sport TM to incredible new participant tallies. As the smartest guy in the room I can tell you this: trails are boring when they are rough, not to mention they aren't crowded when they are rough, and I like it when it's crowded, it reminds me of a frat party, and everyone knows frat parties kick ass. Besides, I get scared when I'm in the woods alone. Of course with all that CHA-CHING I have in my titanium hand-crafted safe in my workshop, I could pay 3 or 4 bodyguards to ride with me at all times, but then they might get in the way of me spraying roost in the face of anyone who ever made fun of me online.
JC: I agree with Blevins. After all, he has a ski named after him. Which means he's absolutely, irrefutably correct about anything he says or writes online.
BR: I agree with Joah, he's written some stellar reviews at twister. I don't think he's ever been wrong about anything. I hear he's got a law degree too, which means whatever he says about dealing with land managers is 100% correct. Law school teaches that kind of diplomatic wisdom, just like engineering school teaches you all you need to know about trail design and bottom bracket height.
SB: As the only relative amateur in this august grouping of MTB stars, I just want to say, on behalf of all the bikers out there who have only average skills, that the faster we can replace all existing trails with Flow Trails TM and the sooner we Grow the Sport to something bigger than NASCAR, I won't have to explain to my neighbor why it is I drive my Porsche SUV with KUAT rack the 7 miles from my house to the local trailhead. Everyone will know that mountain biking is more about hangin' with your bros at the trailhead, comparing SUVs and bike racks and bike upgrades. Riding trails is just what you do to give you a reason to be at the trailhead. That's why trails need to be Flow Trails TM, and that's why trails need to be easy enough for a paraplegic to ride without adaptive gear. If you ask me, all MTB trails should be safe enough for a 3 year old child to ride on without crashing and without ever having to use the brakes or pedal or otherwise navigate the trail. My ideal trail would resemble a slot car track -- you could ride it while sleeping. The GoPro footy would be stellar! Plus it would Grow the Sport tremendously! Every child would love it! My kids spend waaaaaaaaaaay too much time playing video games and sexting their peers. If we don't get them out onto Flow Trails soon --and by soon I mean RIGHT NOW, if not yesterday-- we're going to have too many teen pregnancies on our hands.
KS: Snott, it sounds like you're a misogynist and rapist. Why do you hate women so much as to fantasize about young girls getting pregnant after sexting? I bet you are a libertarian! You're not even a real mountain biker! Show me your sleeve tattoo! Show me your iPod songlist. Is there any Nine Inch Nails on your iPod? No? Then you're not a real mountain biker, and you're just a sad repthuglican who needs to die ASAP.
VW: Korie, we've been friends a long time and I've written some stellar reviews for Lavadome because of that friendship, but even I have to admit -- you're taking things a little too far here. Snott's one hell of a Pep Booster and his comments around the internet do heaps to Grow the Sport. In fact, Snott may be the leading candidate for Sport Ambassador - Internet Citizenship.
KS: Over my dead body. I bet he didn't even support Obama in 2012. He's part of the patriarchy!
SG: I tend to agree with Verdant, but maybe that's because I don't understand Korie's sense of sarcasm. He is kidding, isn't he? I can't tell. Our humor in Canada is so much gentler. If Korie said those things in Canada he'd get run out of town, probably run out of the country. Unless he lived in the Nortwest Territories, I guess. I hear it's a little rough up there.
KS: I don't use sarcasm, Spike. Sarcasm is rude, misogynistic, and a tool of the patriarchy. I'm dead serious, I won't have any part of The Sport if Snott Brownes becomes Sport Ambassador. I'll keep my job at Lavadome, of course, but I won't participate in internet discussion any more. I have enough of that patriarchal privilege in my daily commute, which includes sharing the road with people who don't vote Democrat and who probably don't even own a bicycle.