Archive for April, 2008

Interview on Beijing Radio

Montag, April 28th, 2008

The dual language channel of Beijing Radio at 77.4 fm asked me to come to their studio for an interview about the bicycle games and my riding around Beijing. I usually ride to office on my commuter fixed gear bike from Corima. He a picture of that track bike in front of the famous Gate of Heavenly Peace, the Tiananmen.

Fixed Gear Bicycle at Tiananmen

Beijing Radio Green Bicycle Games 2008

Samstag, April 26th, 2008

As posted the Beijing Radio is organizing a GREEN event to promote bicycling in China versus other transportation methods. In order to be selected to join this big event it is required to participate in some bike related games. At least that was I was told before the games.

So yes I did participate in the fun games today even though they were not all related to bikes. We had to do track stands on cheap small wheeled bicycles, had to carry as many boxes of milk while running backwards over a small balance beam, had to ride cheap small wheeled bicycles slalom around 3 boxes of milk, had to blow as many small balloons as possible and answer questions related to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

Balance Beam Milk Game

Milk Bike Slalom

And in between there were Chinese singers to make the crowd coming out of the shopping mall happy.

Chinese Pop Music Performance

You can have a look at more pictures if you click here. They had asked if I can do some tricks on my bike so I did that at the end as well. Click here for more pictures of this event.

Ines Headstand on Bike

At least I won the Games. That brings me closer to the goal of being chosen to ride from one of China Olympic Games‘ cities to Beijing as a sign to promote bicycling in China.

Ben (the other half of the Beijing Fixed Gear Group) had come to watch my tricks at the bike games. I then took some pictures of him skidding.

Fixed Gear Skid by Ben

Ben Skidding

And actually the whole day was quite booked out: A speech training in the morning – participating in the bike games – doing some tricks for the audience at the bike games – riding fixed gear with Ben in the streets and on some urban slopes (but I forgot my camera) – missing out the photo exhibition of a friend of mine in the art district – Chinese barbecue (羊肉串) party in the traditional courtyard of the Hutong School – another Chinese barbecue (羊肉串) party with the Beijing Linux User Group (BLUG).

Here are two beautiful picture Ben took while I was practicing wheelies (I forgot my camera…) while riding our fixed gear through the Central Business District:

Fixed Gear between the Legs

Fixie Bike between the Legs

New China Visa Rules

Freitag, April 25th, 2008

Be aware of the enhanced rules for getting a visa to visit China before or during the Olympics. This also applies to foreigners living in China right now. There are many articles about it and it seems the rules do change very rapidly. So here just an example article showing some reasons why these new rules are put in place:

Article on “the star online” regarding “China imposes new visa rules”

The Chinese Government has imposed more stringent requirements for visa application because of the Beijing Olympics. Chinese Embassy counsellor Shen Yong Xian in Kuala Lumpur confirmed that stricter rules had been implemented temporarily until the end of the Games in August.

“This is to ensure that we do not receive complaints from visitors that our hotels are full and our tourist destinations are too crowded.”

“We also do not want to see people sleeping on the streets as there will be many people visiting China during the Olympic Games period,” Shen said here yesterday.

He added that it was best if visitors avoided the Olympics period.

In Singapore, the Foreign Affairs Ministry announced that Singaporeans traveling to China from July 1 would need a visa.

Local Malaysian travel agents confirmed that they had reduced the number of China tours due to the new rules.

Malaysian Chinese Tourism Association president Chay Ng said: “Some of the travel agents have stopped organizing China tours for the time being for fear that it will be difficult to get visas right now.”

Beijing Radio Bicycle Event and Trick Bike Performance

Freitag, April 25th, 2008

I have been contacted by the Radio Beijing Co (RBC). They are planning on organizing a big bicycle event in this Olympic year. And for that they are searching for more bicycle lovers or passionate cyclists or people who ride bicycle because they think it is s great thing for our environment.For those of you who can read Chinese, here is a link to this year’s event of Beijing Radio.
They are currently urgently looking for people to participate in fun bike games scheduled on weekends to decide who will be riding from various Olympic locations to Beijing to promote the use of bicycles in China as an alternative transportation method. This weekend the games will be at:

4/26/2008 & 4/27/2008 14:00-17:00 万达广场新世界商场 Wanda Plaza

Me and some friends will participate in the fun games (they provide bicycles for that, you cannot use your own) on Saturday April 26th. So please come by and cheer for us!

Also I do not know exactly what time, but I was asked to give an artistic bicycling performance on my trick bike. So you can also come and watch that some time between 2pm and 5pm at the South side of Wanda Plaza on an open air stage.

Fixed Gear Bike Interview in Magazine

Donnerstag, April 24th, 2008

Wow, I did not expect it this big! I was asked some questions from one of the employees of the magazine „That’s Beijing“. They printed pictures of me on my trick bike with an interview in the April 2008 edition that you can get free of charge at many locations around Beijing. If you cannot get a copy: Click here to read the online article.

Thats Beijing April 2008 Cover

Yoga at the Climbing Wall

Dienstag, April 22nd, 2008

The climbing wall in Ritan Park in Beijing is always a nice place to meet up for climbing routes as well as bouldering. Even if the weather is still a bit chilly there are always some fun people around.

Ritan Park Climbing Club

And we do not only come here for climbing. Last Saturday we were trying to find many difficult Yoga postures and challenging each other. It turned out that some guys are much more flexible than others…

Not flexible climber
Really flexible climber

House Party

Sonntag, April 20th, 2008

In China it is not very common to invite your friends over to your place just for having drinks. But we do that once in a while. Some of our Foreign friends are really happy about it as they miss the house parties they used to have in their home countries.

Yesterday we had such a small house party. We had some ingredients for mixing cocktails and long drinks. That always reduced the amount of beer that is consumed. With the bottles that some guests brought we ended the party at +1 (that means having one full bottle of beer more than when we started).

Squeezing lemons can be tiring. Every party there is a different favorite drink. One year my Chinese friends were doing B52 shots the whole night. This time there were two favorites: Campari Orange and Blue Curacao with orange juice. Odd choice. I hope the last one was just because of the green color…

Kryptonite Breaks Valve

Donnerstag, April 17th, 2008

Yesterday I had my first flat tire on my commuter track bike. but it was not a hole in the tube. No. It was the valve that got cut off when the Kryptonite lock touched it. Well – the lock is a huge chain and actually really heavy. But I was astonished that with one touch the valve broke off where it come out of the rim. And what a clean cut:

Kryptonite Bike Lock

I was carrying all the tools with me (as every day) as well as the stuff to patch an inner tube – just not any spare tubes. Lesson learned: From now on I will carry a spare tube, especially when riding longer distances.

Urban Wheels Magazine

Dienstag, April 15th, 2008

If you are Italian or if can read Italian or if you do not mind not understanding everything, then check out this link to the April issue of the Urban Wheels Magazine showing my pictures and an interview.

Urban Wheels

Italian Elections and Juggling

Dienstag, April 15th, 2008

The Italian elections ended tonight. A group of Italians came to the place where we juggle and met to get the results of the elections. But unfortunately they were not so happy with them.

Track Bike

The juggling group is becoming more popular. It was really getting crowded. I did not bring my camera so the pictures are from last week. In that week also a fixie rider from Chicago that belongs to the Chicago fixed group came for a visit and dropped by the open juggling night (as I usually have my track bike with me).

Juggling WomanJuggling Peter

The rola bola (balancing board on a a roll) we use is just made of a board (wood) and a piece of plastic pipes for toilets. My friend took a cab to bring the rola bola last time and the cab driver asked him if he comes from a cooking class, because of the board. This time a surfer from California who trains on a similar board used it to the extreme till it fell apart.