Forged Rubber: The Mobile Factory Tour
August 7, 2014
Photographed by Megan Sontog
Hi, my name is Amanda. I'm about to tell you a story about a machine. His name is DESMA and he makes Chrome's Forged Rubber Sneakers. DESMA is an old pro at making shoes. Seventy years ago, he was cranking out army boots during WWII but after the war, he just sat with 85 of his fellow machines rusting away in a basement in Slovakia.
One fine day, he got the call that Chrome Industries wanted him and his pals to build Forged Rubber Sneakers by forging rubber soles directly onto durable canvas uppers, one at a time, by hand, the same way they made army boots 70 years ago. While his pals went to work in Thailand, DESMA oiled his pivots, slapped on some paint, and hopped the first flight to San Francisco, where he and our Chrome Crew geared up to take this one-machine Forged Rubber Factory on tour.
Oregon Manifest Bike Design Project
August 4, 2014
This year, instead of the Oregon Manifest just being in sunny Portland OR, it spread it's proverbial wings and created The Bike Design Project. 5 cities. 5 teams. 5 bikes. 1 universal party to reveal each team's bike of tomorrow TODAY. Those 5 cities were San Francisco, Chicago, New York City, Portland, and Seattle... and we just happen to have hubs in all those cities. Boom. Party time. Continue reading
Chrome Seattle HUB Grand Opening Party
June 20, 2014
Here at Chrome we're making moves. Bob Seger wrote a song about it, it's called "NightMoves" – it's probably best to listen to this song as you read this. >> Except instead of a song about teenagers discovering their sexuality in the woods, Chrome is discovering a new home in America. Enter, our sixth HUB: Chrome Seattle. On a summer night, on a sweet summer night we welcomed friends both old and new, to break in Chrome Seattle like we have all HUBs before it. We threw a party. A pinball party.
Meet the Artist: NOA-
June 9, 2014
The NOA- Yalta is the newest addition to our Artist Series, and features the original artwork of Japanese, live-paint artist, NOA-. NOA- is as humble as he is talented. Typically using acrylic paint on canvas or wood, he's known for painting with a style that emulates Japanese line-making.
We joined NOA- in an Oakland warehouse where he painted a piece specifically for Chrome. The piece was inspired by the phrase "Kuro Mu" which sounds like Chrome and means Black Fog. We used the print to create our New Limited Edition NOA- Yalta.
Guest Post: Squid Talks CMWC, Mexico City
June 6, 2014
I was lucky enough to take part in the 22nd Annual Cycle Messenger World Championships this past weekend in Mexico City, Mexico!
- Hundreds of cycle couriers from around the world gathered for this most epic event. I want to say a Big Thank You to the CMWC Mexico team and all the wonderful people who volunteered and worked so hard to pull it off!I got in on the same flight with four other NY’ers on Thursday afternoon. Proud to say our city rolled deep with 15 total!
I missed the track racing at the Olympic Velodrome and group ride to the Pyramids of the Sun and Moon, and the KOM hill climb (Congrats Cooper Ray for bringing NY it’s first World Champ title of the weekend!). Not to worry though, plenty of mayhem was in store for the next few days.
Thursday evening was a pub crawl. I drank enough Mezcal to last me the whole weekend. It was great to see old friends and meet some new ones too.
A little misty that I missed a few of the insane evening events but at 42 years old I have to pick my battles, and decided to focus on day drinking and going to bed at a semi respectable hour.
Friday evening brought the alleycat and more than 200 people gathered in the threatening rain. As the messenger gods laughed, it started to pour and pour and pour! An unbelievable onslaught that would have cancelled any ‘sanctioned’ event. On Safa’s command we blazed into the streets, mixing some of the worlds most intense traffic with a monsoon and a few hundy cycle maniacs. I lasted about 90 minutes with a pack that gelled around me. I stopped to help a guy who went down hard and ended up getting lost (no big surprise). All good though, met a random MC cat and we toured around until catching on with another group of stragglers.
Big Ups to NY’s own Crihs Thormann for the win. As I understand, it was a sprint finish among the lead pack. Saturday brought the qualifiers for the main race, the one event I was sweating. In my 14 previous World Championships, I only managed to qualify for the final twice!
Such a beautiful city and the people are so friendly and peaceful in my experience. While the traffic was intense and insane, the drivers are looking out and the aggro level that's so prevalent in the US is virtually nonexistent. A history rooted in magical culture and mixed with modern day amenities.
The course was a beautiful masterpiece mixing brains and technical ability. I had a smooth run and delivered 19 packages for a strong mid-pack finish. My goal was accomplished! I made the final. With little or no interest in how I performed in the actual main event, my party mode was fully engaged.
Eighty World Champions gathered on Sunday to battle it out on our bikes to see who was the best! Congratulations to Raph from Lausanne and Christina from San Francisco, 1st and 3rd overall, true champions and truly awesome and humble people.
I managed to deliver two packages in the final before taking a break with Todd Danger and riding one of Mexico City’s biggest/baddest roller coasters. My first time on a triple looper, a perfect way to goof off during the race.
Back to the course and I delivered one more then made the rounds and got some pics while visiting the awesome checkpoint crews.
Of all my Championships this one stands out for many reasons. Helmets off to Mexico City Crew and Congratulations to the Melbourne crew who will be hosting the 23rd annual in Melbourne.
Keep an eye out for tons of photos/videos from Tak and many others in the coming weeks.
Ride Safe and Holler!
Kevin “Squid” Bolger is the hardest working man alive. A veteran NYC messenger, he's raced nearly every CMWC since 1995. He’s been sponsored by Chrome since 2004. Check him out at CycleHawk.com