Friday, July 29, 2016

When you could fill your tank with regular for under four bucks.

A fading green gas pump, looking a lot like an artist's pallette, still stands at Kelley + Kelley nurseries in Long Lake. The last time this handle was cranked gas was 25-cents per gallon. 

Mr. Kelley might have removed this icon from his yard, but it remains, looking more beautiful than ever. There's only a single grade of gas available: regular leaded. No high test, no Ethanol, no detergent, no STP.


Flowers at the nursery have grown up around the pump.  Lots of green to be seen. 

Pump on lock-down.  Credit cards not accepted.  Attendant not on Duty. 

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

1948 Frazer rusts away in a junk lot in Wickenburg, AZ.

Do you remember these auto 'badges' from the 40's and 50's?

Frazer. Henry J. Kaiser Frazer.  Frazer Darren. 

These were successful, powerful brands in their day. Manufactured in Michigan, advertised in leading magazines like Life and Look, and sold through a national dealer network, they fed a voracious auto appetite just after the War.

Tastes changed quickly back then. Competition was ruthless. The Frazer "triad" lost its footing.  Long off-sale and forgotten now, some like this one sit a-rusting in Arizona junk yards.

An occasional Frazer has been restored, but likely occupies a secondary spot in a collector's treasure trove.

The FRASR 48 to your right was discovered on-line.  I believe it's still for sale.  Price was recently reduced to $16,000.  Car looks pretty sweet in this picture. Compare the blue trunk deck with the rusted red above.

One can only imagine if the "rusted red" had received the TLC that Big Blue enjoyed.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

One of my favorite San Fran Velo Vistas. California Street as you can Tell.

Blue Bottle Coffee sign in front window, just behind the velosters, assures that this java joint on California Street has earned its hipness cred.  I met the guys inside, sitting at a round table with friends, enjoying, well, I'm guessing Blue Bottle.   I followed them out to their bikes, asked if I might take a foto for the Poppy Blog, and smiles went ear to ear immediately. 

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Forgot to Mention Custom Bikes at MIA Bike Nite on 7/21/16

Crazy Cat Tandem greeted attendees at MIA Bike Nite last week.  Can you even imagine the TLC, the hours, paint, papier mache skills, imagination involved in creating this Crazy Cat Velo? Wish there had been a "docent" nearby to fill in the details.  What a work of art.  Meowwwwww.

Friday, July 22, 2016

MIA staffers help attendees cool off at Annual 3rd Thursday Bike Nite.

Life savers.  That's what we call these young MIA staffers.  Last night in the courtyard at the Annual Bike Night festival, little bottles of chilled H2O goodness were "on the house."  And by the looks of the smiles on theses faces, our MIA hosts were only to happy to deliver the chill.

The  Cycling Museum of Minnesota brought a classic "Penny Farthing" two wheeler to Bike Nite, invited youngsters of all ages to hop aboard, enjoy the "view from the top."   This little veloster could almost reach the pedals.  Next year: for sure.

Techs and all-round good folks from The Hub Bike Co-op were plenty busy last night. Bike Nite attendees pedaling in were invited to have their velos checked out, tightened and tuned where necessary, and with a a few pointers from the Hubsters, sent safely on their way.  
I'm imagining that visitors to the Shinola tent at bike nite were hoping there'd be some swag to take home to condos in Uptown. I looked on from a comfortable distance, a little concerned that my wallet would open mysteriously, my AMEX card pop out under its own steam, and that I'd end up driving the KIA back to Long lake with a shiny new Shinola in the way back. Shinola has the most gorgeous accessories, never mind the bikes -- which everyone seems to want to own.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Wilson + Willy's Neighbor Goods Keeps Getting More Customer Friendly.

Big, lovable, and very gentle "Lamont" is just one of the cool new items you'll find at Wilson + Willy's on Washington Ave.  Nancy and I were in town last week, popped into W + W looking for something for the grands. We discovererd Lamont, instead, and asked his proud Mom and Dad if they wouldn't mind posing for a pic with the big guy to be posted on the Poppy Blog.

I also bought a bright, red and white-star bandana for my Bro Joe.  He was surprised and thrilled to open his goody from W + W. Check him out below, masked man attitude and all.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Pedaling the Midtown Greenway: "much more than a traditional trail."

I made it to the Mississippi River today. A five-mile ride that seemed longer, west to east:  likely the strong wide and near-ninety temps.  I didn't exactly have the trail to myself, though there wasn't as much traffic as I expected.  Mostly hard-body, high end veloers, with spandex and colorful jerseys, heads down, and moving fast.

Wish I'd been able to get to my camera to capture a shot of a young lady headed toward me on a foldy bike.  You can see my Giant Expressway II in many of my fotos; it's rare when I spy a fellow "folder." The gal today was likely aboard a Brompton - bright blue frame, I believe. Not sure she was as curious about me as I was about her and her ride.

It was a little eerie to see the name of the late Philando Castile stenciled on the pathway.  Perhaps there was a memorial servvice in his memory the other evening?  Or, his name is meant as a continual reminder of the tragedy that took his life, and a call to action for system-wide change.  

Just before the Lake Street bridge there's a quick turn to the eats, and a steep path down to the Mississippi. A young man in the West River Parkway neighborhood explained that the varisty crew -- eights and fours -- of the University of Minnesota put in their shells from the dock on which my Foldy is reposing.  Today would have been exhilirating out on the river. 

Toward the end of the line one gets a fine history lesson about the visionary Mr. Cleveland and his plan to preserve the riverway and adjacent park land. 

Riding the Luce Line around and near Medicine Lake.

One of Minnesota's fabled "10,000 Lakes," and this one set in the heart of Mpls. suburb Plymouth, Medicine Lake is an appealing and altogether challenging velo destination.  I rode it yesterday for the first time, and in spite of near-90-degree temps had a memorable experience.

You know the Luce Line -- its expansive footprint in the Metro, the high level of path or trail maintenance, its relatively low density of traffic.  Luce Line is one of the reasons the Twin Cities get high marks for bike-friendliness.

As for Medicine Lake, I was interested to read the sign in the photo -- an environmental repair and maintenance program designed to halt lakefront erosion.  When that project is finished the journey will be even more rewarding than it is now.

A sparkling new velo (and I assume pedestrian, skate board, roller blade, anything non-motorized) bridge crosses Hwy. 55 in Plymouth.  The black paint on the railings is so squeakly clean as to be artistic.  Tresses and structural elements are reassuringly sturdy and safe.  Pavement is smooth, flawless.  As I crossed this bridge I wonderered how it had been funded.  Whoever's responsible:  thank you very much!! 

Monday, July 18, 2016

Google somehow enhanced my photo of Lowry Ave Bridge.

Dont you thin the Google enhancement looks pretty cool?  I'm taking the foldy Giant back to NE Minneapolis today, see what else catches my velo eye.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Friday, July 15, 2016

Our souls ache for the victims of the slaughter in Nice. Can you imagine being there, watching God's children mowed down in front of you?  What if your friends, kids or grandkids were murdered before your eyes? It's hard to imagine one fellow human being so cold-hearted and uncaring.  My friend Kelly just posted on FB:  "Please, Lord, help us all." 

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Shopping today in the North Loop. Had to travel by car instead of bike: how else to carry all the loot back home?

It would be so cool to be 2-years old and have one of these Vespa look-alikes in your playroom.

Sale rack at Pacifier.  Poppina found a treasure for some very special grand children.

Special gift items for the very good little grandchildren, tucked into the shopping bag you see in the pic here.  
Foto credit:  Poppina.

Very hip and trendy eyewear shop with pricey designer frames on display inside, and memorable graphics outside. 

Hungry, thirsty, smart-shoppers made a bee-line to Sebastian Joe's to celebrate a spontaneous, successful afternoon of retail adventure.  Ice cream cones and sundaes paid for with cash; credit card needed a rest.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Hiawatha Bike Club Annual Independence Day Rally.

Hiawatha Bicycling Club "peleton" stopped at Plymouth Starbucks as part of annual July 4th Independence Rallye.  

I was ordering my iced skim latte when I saw this Raleigh-riding, "got blood" t-shirt wearing, veloster outside the window at 'Bucks.

Wish I'd take a minute to ask him about his shirt!!

This enthusiastic volunteer couple took a minute away from handling out carbs, hydration and potassium-rich bananas to pose for a foto.  I knew I knew them from before:  they were at the same coffee spot in Plymouth, at the same time last year.  They remembered me as I did them.  Let's hear it for volunteer continuity!!

Lovely young lady surely wins the prize for best hairdo!  It would be hard to imagine that remarkable blond braid tucked up under the Giro helmet.

I've seen the "Gunnar" brand name -- think they're hand-crafted in Steamboat Springs, CO?  What I can't tell you is if the guy in the shirt was really riding a Gunnar.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

I met this new friend in the window of a little eatery on Raymond Ave. in St. Paul, just off University.

What I forgot to find out is if the doll disappears for the night once the open sign turns closed? Weird, but not too weird?

Friday, July 1, 2016

Foundry Home Goods, North Loop, Minneapolis, 6/30/16.

Will's visiting from San Fran.  Poppina and I took them to our fave retailer in the Twin Cities:  Foundry Home Goods.  Our boy is a lighting designer among other accomplishments, and was casting a critical eye at a brass lamp in FHG front window.  The trusty iPhone5s managed to capture the trademark smile AND my wife and a profile of our granddaughter!  We'll take the memory!