The Angry Singlespeeder: Finding Things to be Angry About

Ever since moving to Reno, there hasn’t been much to be angry about.

Editor’s Note: The Angry Singlespeeder is a collection of mercurial musings from contributing editor Kurt Gensheimer. In no way do his maniacal diatribes about all things bike oriented represent the opinions of Mtbr, RoadBikeReview, or any of their employees, contractors, janitorial staff, family members, household pets, or any other creature, living or dead. You can submit questions or comments to Kurt at [email protected]. And make sure to check out Kurt’s previous columns.

Ever since moving to Reno two weeks ago, the Angry Singlespeeder hasn’t had much to be angry about. Compared to Southern California, life here is slow, relaxed, friendly and quite enjoyable. Traffic doesn’t exist. Road rage doesn’t either. Riding is absolutely world class and can be found everywhere. Rocky, exposed high desert terrain? Check. Lodgepole pine forests with loamy singletrack? Check. Techy-tech riding up creekbeds lined with aspen trees and lush greenery? Got that too. Mile-long hike-a-bikes through drifts of snow at 10,000 feet so you can enjoy a 4,000 vertical foot descent? Yup.

No matter where you go, the snowcapped Sierras tower above with authority, as do thunderclouds that pour down hail and lightning as you fly fish beside the Truckee River and stare up at the awe of nature. The jewel that is Lake Tahoe takes whatever remaining stress or anger you might have in your bloodstream and completely flushes it out.

Even in a week that found me visiting the ER due to a benign spider bite that grew into an infected abscess, the ER was empty, clean and the staff was incredibly nice. As much as it sucks being in any ER getting an IV, that short two-hour visit was strangely pleasant. I’m still waiting for the ER bill, so I’m sure my brief respite of peace and happiness will abruptly end in a raging uproar of f-bombs as soon as I open the mailbox.

Not having any TV whatsoever and not having read any newspapers or news websites has also helped. Ignorance is bliss as they say, and not knowing the numbskullery that’s going on with our government, society and the world at large is refreshing. I don’t even know what crappy movies are in theaters right now.

Yesterday I accidentally went to the Yahoo! homepage and saw a headline that instantaneously pissed me off; “Kanye West and Kim Kardashian Tweet the Arrival of their Baby”. Not only does it completely baffle me how these two wastes of skin get headline news for doing something that’s done hundreds of millions of times every day, but these two morons felt it necessary to Tweet the arrival of their spawn? Poor kid. Poor, poor kid.

While I’m on the topic, Yahoo! has got to have the most annoying headline writers in the news business. And because I write for a living, it particularly grates my skin. Part of the reason why I got rid of my Yahoo! email – besides the fact that it got spammed 10 ways to Sunday thanks to budget cuts in their email security – is because the news headlines that popped up before I got to my email each time were rage inducing. I just went to the Yahoo! homepage and here are the top headlines:

“Chad Johnson’s Unexpected Jail Visitor” – Who the hell is Chad Johnson? Maybe he got a conjugal visit? Why do we care?
“Bear mauls Alaska man who gave it barbeque meat” Sounds like he deserved it.

When you’re exposed to this stupidity every day, you grow immune to it. But when you stop watching TV and reading news headlines, on the rare occasion you do, your sensitivity to the stupidity is magnified. Are we as Americans really so dumb that reading about Kanye West and Kim Kardashian procreating somehow stimulates our feeble and undereducated brains? Shouldn’t we strive for more mind-expanding content? You know, like the dribbling diatribes of an Angry Singlespeeder?

One other thing that really gets me pissed – smartphones. Not necessarily the smartphone itself, but the toolbag that’s operating the thing. Repeat after me – I’m not skilled enough to drive and dick with my smartphone at the same time. If I see one more friend of mine trying to drive and text at the same time I am gonna grab the phone and chuck it out the window.

There is ZERO excuse for playing with your phone while driving. In fact, I firmly believe the penalty for texting while driving should be more severe than drunk driving. The reason being that when you’re drunk, you’re literally impaired. You’re not sober enough to make a sane and reasonable decision about not driving. When you’re texting and driving, you have full mental faculties (not saying much for most people) and hopefully have enough intelligence to realize it’s a bad idea. So yes, if you are texting and driving, you are a full-blown idiot and I hope you kill yourself before you kill someone else.

Besides driving, peoples’ behavior with smartphones is comical. Next time you’re in a public area, just look around and observe how many people have their heads down, absolutely hypnotized by this stupid device. Nobody talks to each other, and if they do, they’re constantly distracted from the conversation by the pinging of new incoming messages. Nothing makes you feel less important than when someone is talking to you and starts picking up their phone to check incoming messages in the middle of your conversation.

See what you made me do? Before I wrote this I was at peace, now I’m all pissed off. Okay, that’s enough. I gotta go for a long, hard ride. Hopefully I don’t get run over by some driving-while-texting schmucktard.

About the author: Kurt Gensheimer

Kurt Gensheimer thinks the bicycle is man’s most perfect invention. He firmly believes ‘singlespeed’ is a compound word. He sometimes wears a disco ball helmet. He is also known as Genshammer. He is a Gemini and sleeps outside in a hammock.

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  • JMP says:

    Shit I love the ASS! Keepin’ it real with no B.S.

  • Bike Parts Guy says:

    i have seen folks texting each other a few feet away?? crazy!

  • not amused says:

    “Tips for dealing with a diva girlfriend” – Backslap her across the face.

    Seriously folks? This is not funny, or ironic, or remotely useful in any way whatsoever.

    If you don’t understand, instead of ‘diva’ insert the name of your mom, wife, girlfriend, sister, domestic abuse victim of your choice. Still funny? I hope not.

  • Mike says:

    I have a theory that in the future, people will have evolved with tiny little T-rex arms, just big enough to hold a “mobile device”. Love the column.

  • Angry Singlespeeder says:

    My mom isn’t a diva.

    – ASS

  • xcbiker says:

    unfortunately this is all true. Yay society!

  • Strunkley N. White says:

    There’s a saying that when the only tool you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

    Misogyny accusations are often used like a hammer. So many nails arise where previously they just weren’t there. I find it helps to look inside yourself at your dark secrets when you are tempted to run around seeking evidence of misogyny and finding it where it’s not there. Of course this isn’t limited to misogyny accusations. I’d say it qualifies any time you try to mind-read someone else through words typed on the internet.

  • Tony says:

    In 2007, I moved to a little affluent yuppified Southern California burg and noticed that if you just stopped and observed people walking down the sidewalk, the men would usually be walking, looking where they were going, but every single female walking down the street was intensely talking into or looking into a telephone, making it impossible to so much as have a basic exchange of common decency, a simple “good afternoon” or even simple eye contact & nod, much less actually meet anyone. It became a sort of challenge, to spot a woman walking without talking, and for 2 entire years, no one in our office saw one girl or woman out in public that wasn’t preoccupied talking to someone on a phone out our 20′ long office window on our busy corner. That photo reminded me of that, and has made my ass twitch with irritation. Thanks, Angry SSer.

    I don’t really care one way or the other about women, but I can’t help but think there’s some really screwey social dynamic developing that’s going to socially retard several generations of them if it continues, and I do wonder what percentage of the total cell minutes & texts used in the US every year are used by women.

  • Evan says:

    You’re loving Reno now. Wait till the snow comes.

  • Francis Cebedo says:

    Edit Note: The ‘backslap’ line in the article has been edited out.

  • bryan says:

    Do they even have cell towers there? Sounds like the aSS is worrying about a phenomenon that may not even be possible where he lives now. Enjoy your little slice of peace and quiet while the rest of us suffer.

  • Bruce W says:

    Such astute commentary! I’m glad my thoughts are so common.

  • Rideordie says:

    When the snow flies will ride that too. But ur right Evan Reno suks stay where u are. Ass, did u ss to that pic?

  • SayWhat? says:

    “The masses are asses!”

  • andy says:

    Angry, are we related? I can’t get enough. I need to find a column where I disagree.

    Oh yea, that one where you want more old-school s***ty trails, that is totally wrong.
    Slap yourself back into shape! Or, just go ride the old junk to your heart’s content, but certainly don’t ask for more of it.

    Hugs and Kisses,

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