Thursday, April 30, 2009

Near and Dear

One of my dearest and most talented friends is here in Chicago for Next and Art Chicago this weekend. And the first stop of his visit was the Hopleaf, for tasty eats and impeccable beer (mussels and Kwak). I'm posting this entry so he may have good "juju" to be one of most coveted fine artists of all time. Enter Greg Mocilnikar.

April Showers

I feel like it's been raining like a mofo in Chicago. And I want to move where?

Nothing like a little Tatsuro Kiuchi illustration to make it OK.

currently listening to: Explosions In the Sky

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Just came back from watching this film at the Music Box. It was good to hear different points view and values from some of the best living industrial designers in the world. I would recommend it for those interested (it's coming back to the Gene Siskel in the summer). A good treat for a Tuesday night.

currently listening to: Sigur Ros

Sunday, April 26, 2009


The fenders came in, and they have an incredible smell of wood veneer and varnish. Everyone I've shown them to, I've made them take a deep whiff of their hand-crafted glory. The cherry wood the artist used for the outer layer, is a lot lighter in color than the website's photos show— which bums me out slightly. I thought the contrast between the 3 wood types, (cherry, mahogany, and wenge), would be greater— though I'm still happy because they really are beautiful. The craftsman took pride in his work, and I appreciate that. And I love the fact that he signed/dated the bottom of the rear fender: "Cody Davis 4-22-09 Bend, OR"

Next thing I'm waiting on is the paint job for my frame/fork/rack, and then I hand off everything to the builders.


Some days I'm bad because I don't wear a helmet while biking; esp since I've a acquired a new hat for spring… A gray Fidel Castro-style hat, that I've sewn buttons onto, to knock-off an Anthropologie hat. Because it's good to knock off Anthropologie when you can, and even better when you can make it yourself.

And the best thing I ate all weekend, was this organic feta/spinach/ chicken/ turkey hot dog, dressed with tomato/cucumber/red pepper/cocktail pickle/celery salt and stone ground mustard on a whole wheat bun— from Drew's Eatery down the street from me:

currently listening to: ELO

Friday, April 24, 2009

Just Because…

It's Friday, it's 80 degrees in Chicago, and I'm going to see Neko Case tonight!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Best of April

I know April is not over yet, still, the best part of the month was having my family visit me for 5 days. And we did everything... ALL the museums, the architectural boat tour, Wrigley Field, the Hancock, Table 52, deep dish pizza, Billy Goat Tavern, Grant and Millennium Park— they even saw Mary Poppins at the Cadillac Theater the night I had "off" to see Andrew Bird at the Opera House down the street. There was even a night when my mom made a good home cooked meal, and I got to make Easter brunch for everyone; and the boys got Easter bags. And I love the experience of walking with my nephews to the train, and standing on the platform with them.

I miss them. They make it easier to plan more for the NW.

My mom sitting in front of her portrait:

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Good Things

One of the tastiest, and yet most simple sandwiches ever:

Natural peanut butter & homemade raspberry jam, on multigrain, with banana. From the cute Lovely Bakery. The homemade jam won me over.

currently listening to: ELO

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


My bike frame is here! Picked it up from Lesley + Alex on Sunday, and picked out the rest of the parts with them via catalog. Meeting with the painter this Saturday. And got a sweet deal on a special edition Brooks saddle/grips set (with a seat cover included!):

Ordered wood fenders from Bend, OR; due to arrive in 2 weeks:

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Bike Love

I currently have a decent little bike. It's a 1960's black Hercules, 47 frame perfect for my height, with all the vintage charm and style that a Pashley could offer (but I paid $75 for mine!), but it's a 3 speed. And it gets me to work in 45 min. sweaty, and it fails to help me get up that incline on Halsted. Needless to say I need something faster, lighter, but still looks as good...

After years of dreaming, months of craigslisting, ebaying, researching, talking with friends, weighing out my options, and d) all of the above... I'm having a custom bike built just for me.


I'm anxious and excited all at the same time. I spent a Saturday visiting with three different shops in Chicago, consulting with builders on what I wanted out of my bike and what my budget is. Inspired by Rivendell, Velo Orange, Map, Independent, but
mainly Vanilla Cycles, I knew I wanted design to be first and foremost, and then function (sad but true).

I approached each store with my dream/statement:
My version of the randonee (half touring, half commuter). I want a mixte frame; make the bike fast, light-weight, with a rack and a lamp, that feels/rides like a touring bike, but looks like something Winston Churchill would ride on holiday. And I'm planning on moving to Portland, OR at some point too, so I gotta get up those hills! And make it fit within my budget…

The best match/quote came from a great couple who totally understand where I'm coming from. Alex and Lesley of Roscoe Village Bikes are a husband and wife team from Chicago, and went to school in Eugene, OR, (which peaked my interest), and they know what I want and how to make it happen, all within my budget. They took into consideration the best gear set for my intentions of moving west— and my current immediate need of riding a mere 7 miles to work, plus the ability to make the trek out to the Chicago Botanical gardens too (approx. 18 miles one way).

The mixte frame is coming from Soma, and details for the gears/derailleurs/shifters/etc. I'm leaving up to them. I'm also looking into wood fenders, and shopping around for a bicycle painter.

(How I spend my Saturday nights…) I grabbed an image off the net and spent hours photoshopping how I think the bike might look in the end, with different options on painting and head lamps. And a couple more hours choosing a font for my bike: "Altea" by Paul Lloyd. And I've named my bike: "OISEAU " which means "bird" in French (sounds like 'whaa-zoe'). Did some sketches for a head badge too...

I'm a total dork about this, but I do love geeking out about the whole thing... Here are my concept sketches for my bike with variations on paint (should I paint the rack? should I put stripes on the frame? can we do double head lamps, instead of a single?). Frame is due to come in at the end of the month. Hopefully everything will be ready for Bike the Drive on May 24th. To be continued...

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

New Piece

Just started working on this piece this evening. So I’ve yet to sleep on it. Don’t know where it’s gonna go yet, or if it’s already done…?


I’ve been pretty disappointed with the look of Free People’s catalogs lately, and prefer their aesthetic for their website. So it was refreshing to see this image, on their “Sale” page. Not only do I love the way it's drawn, I also like the fact it has nothing to do with anything, and that the word “Sale” is so small.

And I like the cheetah’s expression.