Interview: Team High School Mar22

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Interview: Team High School

I know I say this a lot, but I love teens. And not in a creepy way. I swear. I think I just have a lot of memories of looking up to cooler, older people when I was a teen, and now I feel fully ready to now step into that role. The problem is, most teens don’t really care about the stuff I do. They like their Gossip Girl and graffiti tagging and Zac Efron (who I also like), but they can’t really get that excited about going to bed early and crushing Tuesday New York Times crossword puzzles. Kids these days…

So anyway, you can imagine my excitement when a group of high school students showed up to the Spand And Deliver race (which, in my adult coolness and independent ability I helped set up). Afterward, unable to think of anything funny to write about it for sosovelo, I decided to track down my teens and interview them.

So here it is. This is my interview. This is real fucking journalism. I felt just like Terry Gross.

Dawn: What are your names and ages:
Al: My name is Al. I’m 18. (Senior)
Jerome: My name is Jerome. I’m 16. (Sophomore)
D: How long have you been riding bikes and how did you get into it?
J: I’ve been riding bikes for 3 years. I first got into track bikes from my 6th grade science teacher. He road a fixed gear to work everyday and he let me ride it sometimes. Then I rode my dad’s 60cm road bike with the seat all the way down.
A: I started 3 years ago. I had a hybrid. I got more into it through Saturday.
highschool2_bw
D: What is that?
J: It’s like Fast Friday, but without a movie.
A: It used to be called Raderday, but then it got changed to Saturday.
D: How many people show up?
J: 20-25.
A: Except for in October when it was just you, me, and Kyle!
J: Dude, that was November
A: Oh yeah. That was like the day before Thanksgiving. And we just rode to Burgerville.
D: What are you studying in school?
J: Biology, PE (but I just get to ride my bike for that), Spanish, video production…
highschool1_bw
D: What classes do you like?
J: None of them
D: Do you get good grades?
A: My GPA is 3.85
J: Mine’s 3.89!
D: Do you want to go to college after this?
J: I don’t know. Maybe UBI for frame building.
A: I’m going to go to school for graphic design at CCA (California College of Art).
D: How did you hear about Spand and deliver?
J: On PUMA (Portland United Messenger Association website)
D: What kind of music do you guys like?
J: I listen to a lot of old hip hop because that’s what’s always on at work (Jerome works at Cascade Cycling)…so it’s just easy to keep listening to it at home.
A: We (Al and Kyle) have a band called Butt Vomit.
J: They have a recording now.
A: We set up a mic in the middle of the room and all pointed our amps towards it and recorded that way. It’s sort of a punk band.

At this point an older, heavily bearded man rides his bike by us. The bike has a boombox in the basket that is blasting Bad Religion.

J: I fix that guys bike all the time. I always need to replace his bottom bracket. But he’s a really cool guy.
D: Please teach me some new slang!
J: Okay…Tarck. That’s like when you see a track bike that’s totally color coordinated with deep Vs, tri-spoke on front, BMX bars…lots of neon. A track bike that’ll never get ridden on the track. Also it’s a website: www.tarckbike.com

Later they also give me the latest in internet slang): IRL=in real life, IMO= In my opinion, FTFY= fix that for you. And the obvious favorite: AYHSMB which means “all you haters suck my balls”

D: Do you guys want to, or have you done non-alleycat races (ie OBRA races)?
Al: I want to do some track races this year
J: Yeah, track. And maybe cyclocross.
D: Do you guys want to later have jobs related to cycling?
J: Well, I already work at a shop. Maybe I would do frame building. Maybe I would work as a messenger, but it’s so hard to get a job in Portland. Maybe I’d move to Boston.
A: I want a bike job, but I don’t have any resources. I’d like to work at a shop to get mechanic experience, but no one wants to hire someone for that. I think I’ll just get old, get rich, and open my own bike shop.
D: Do a lot of people at your school ride bikes like you guys?
A: Yes
J: No. Only one kid at my school rides a track bike
D: Are there girls your age that are into riding bikes?
Both: No.
J: I wish. I’ve never met a teenage girl who was into bikes.
D: What’s your dream bike?
J: Something handmade with a wound-up fork. Maybe a San Rensho. (This is the track bike dream bike). For a road bike it would be a Colnago with SRAM. With that cloverleaf tubing.
A: Something nice with gears. Like a working road bike.
D: What bikes do you already have?
J: I have a Davidson with SRAM Rival. You should put that in. (the SRAM part) A Fuji Track Pro. An Affinity pursuit bike, And a Fuji track, besides the pro one.
A: That’s a Windsor.
J: Yeah it’s basically a Windsor. You can put that in.

I have almost no idea what they are talking about at this point.

A: I have a Univega. And a Vigorelli (Cinelli) track bike.
D: What do you guys like on the internet these days?
J: I love the internet. I like tarckbike.com.
D: Yeah, what is that?
J: Well, you know bikeforum?
D: No
J: Bikeforum was this site and all these kids posted on it and talked all this shit and then, this was on May Day of 2008, they all got banned. This was the Great Mayday Mass Bannings from bikeforum. So then all the kids that got banned, (specifically this guy who goes by Nitropye) started tarckbike.com. They were just trying to see how many dumb kids would go on it.
D: Maybe I’ll go check out that site
J: Someone will probably tell you to eat either a bag or a jar of dicks
Editor: She has a choice?
J: Yeah, there’s these graphics of a mason jar full of dicks or a bag overflowing with dicks
D: Then I can just tell them AYHSMB
J: Yes! That would be the perfect response to “eat a bag of dicks”
D: How many people are on Team High School?
A: I made 15 shirts
J: And one coach
D: Who’s your coach?
J: Alex Oyola
D: Is he in high school?
J: No. He’s in his 20’s.
A: He likes to get sushi with us
J: He’s the only older person that’ll go get sushi with us
D: Have you guys ever thought about bike touring?
J: No! I’m not going camping on a bicycle. I did a Tarck Century though.

A Tarck Century is 11 miles. A Double Tarck is 24 miles. This math is beyond even me.

A: There’s this guy that we always see just riding around at night. So one time my friend asked him what he was up to and he said, “I’m a meth head! I just sleep for like 3 days, then get up, do a bunch of meth and ride my bike for 3 days.” So maybe I would do touring like that. But maybe sans meth.
D: Maybe sans meth?
A: Well it’d be really hard to ride for 3 days without being on meth.
D: What do your parents think about you guys riding bikes?
A: Me and my dad got in an argument about me riding brakeless. But my mom said I wouldn’t have to ride with a brake if I got better at arguing. So I did.
D: Do you wear helmets?
Both: Yes!
D: What are you doing this summer?
Both: Riding the track.
D:Cait wanted me to ask What do you think about Sidekick pagers?
A: Those still exist?
J: Wannabes use them (sorry cait!).
Editor: Are you guys going to be grounded for staying out this late?
J: No. Wait, what time is it?
Editor: 8:00
J: Shit! Yes.