Monday, April 13, 2009

Cold comfort to change

Every team knows about it. It’s the design-a-new-jersey challenge. My team Tripower wrestles with, perhaps mostly subconsciously, the typical questions: Is it better to be conforming and invisible or outlandish and dissed? Is infamy sought over mediocrity, disruption over smooth lines? Will artistically simple become boring, will cutting edge breed regret?

Will it excite showroom fanaticism at its inception, but then we wake one cool day to the reality of our rash emotion and hate what we see in the mirror? How will it look in a breakaway—or, shouldn’t we ask how will it look off the back? Will it earn a respectful nickname or will it incite an epithet? Tripower has a reputation of garnering the latter—clown jersey, killa bees, flamers. But is it better to have a name, any name, than to be known generically as pack filler?

It has the power to unite, divide, conquer, and be seen. It has tipped the scales in war—ok, perhaps not. But a jersey, let’s admit it, is often the only concrete basis for which you can judge a competitor or someone on an organized ride or event. A jersey, because of its importance to showing sponsors, is what a team must wake up most days loving. I would say you need to love your team jersey more than your best fitting jeans, your go-to black dress, your lucky collared shirt.

It's important enough to gather the heads of state who never ride mountain bikes out for the mountain bike Wednesday gathering at Cogan's. This jersey meeting lasted from 830pm till nearly midnight, no kidding.

Here are all Tripower jerseys except for the first one. These designs span about 15 years of the team.


Anonymous said...

I could loan you the first one for the remake - slightly tattered but recognizable....r/bc

Quadzilla said...

I've got the first four.