it is common practice in the world of percussives for cymbal manufacturers to mark their products with blatant hints as to how they think their crafted metals ought best to be used. thus the terms crash, splash, crash/ride, light ride, china type et al provide both the wary and unwary with a guide as to which particular model may well be the very sound for which they are searching. there are a couple of cymbal purveyors for whom this is not true; for instance, the italian ufip company prefer to mark the weight on the underside of each, though choice then becomes the province of the better sonically educated.
however, since there is not yet the equivalent of the cymbal police, there really is nothing to stop the percussively intent from purchasing a 22" heavy cymbal and hitting it very hard to simulate a crash rather than a ride. the choice depends greatly upon the music you play and the girth of your sticks (if you see what i mean). and it doesn't seem outwith the bounds of likelihood that the selfsame approach might be adapted to the world of cycling apparel.
cote d'azur based cafe du cycliste have grown from a minimal product line into one that ranks with the very best of the very best, offering a wide choice of jerseys, jackets and shorts that would allow the desirous velocipedinist to ride with comfort while retaining an harmonious degree of sartorial elegance. their bizarrely named josette waterproof jersey i have featured in these pixels on a previous occasion, but it dawned on me that as we enter both autumn and cyclocross season, its specific properties may lend themselves to hurtling through the undergrowth.
however, as remarked upon in my title, the josette features only short sleeves, something of a limitation as the temperature heads lower and lower, more than likely accompanied by substantial quantities of precipitation. and that's pretty much where their loulou armwarmers enter the fray. though the josette is filed under the heading of waterproof, and in light, persistent rain that is perfectly true, the loulou armwarmers offer no such protection. loulou is content with super-roubaix; but waterproof armwarmers are a rare item in the cyclist's armoury in any case, for who's truly worried if their arms get wet?
but spinning frantically around the innards of bridgend woods is apt to expose the limits of one's fitness, and as the scrabbling reaches less than smooth proportions, a lack of fitness is plain for all to see. in my case, that happens all too soon, displayed ominously via heavy breathing and hotness about the collar. as we all know only too well, the flexibility offered by a pair of armwarmers can ameliorate this unseemly display of uncoolness, a word that, in this case, makes use of both its meanings.
therefore, despite meeting an acquaintance on my first circuit and a fraser woodrow truck on the second, the third time round still necessitated a lowering of the arm defences for a welcome breeze engendered by marginally less speed through the estates. the attested waterproofing afforded by the josette is also a benefit that the average and not so average cyclocrosser can surely benefit from. though the rains have yet to turn the tracks into delineated quagmires, there are enough sporadic pockets of muddy water to keep one's torso in pretty much the condition it was in when it left home.
the cafe du cycliste website portrays the josette aboard a road bike. there is not a hint of scrabbly stuff. but just because it doesn't say crash on the packet, doesn't mean we can't make use of its ride properties.
the cafe du cycliste loulou armwarmers are available for £34 per pair; the josette waterproof jersey costs £139.
sunday 22nd september 2013