Category Archives: Randomness
I Will Ride to Cure Diabetes But I Need Your Help
MichaelDorkMode copy


Mom on a recent ride, left. Brother Michael in dorkmode on the right.

When I was 18, my middle brother Michael was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. It wasn’t because of his diet, or his lifestyle, it was a genetic occurrence that was completely out of his hands. Since then, he’s found a way to compete in college lacrosse, graduate with honors and get married. Oh and he’s a tri-dork. Don’t hate him for that though.

Michael’s T1D limits his lifestyle, even though he did nothing wrong, well besides ride triathlons (ok, ok, I’m done). Every year, since Mike was diagnosed, my mom has donated her time and money to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and this year, I plan to help out as well.

About two years ago, I bought my mom a Surly Crosscheck. She wanted to start riding when she saw how much cycling had improved my health and like a good son, I helped out any way I could. The same goes for my brother. I bought him a Bridgestone RB-1 when he expressed an interest in cycling. He rode it every chance he got and ended up selling it to buy a new bike.

Now myself, along with two of the most important people in my life have made a pledge to raise $2,000 for the 100 mile JDRF ride in Burlington, Vermont in July. I’m sure it’ll be easy enough for my brother and I, but it’s a benchmark for my mom, who’s been training for months. I haven’t ridden in Burlington since highschool and I can’t wait to explore the cycling culture there during the trip.

Originally, I had the amount promised to me by an unnamed company but that has fallen through. So here I am, asking you for help. It doesn’t have to be much, but if you or your company or whoever is willing to donate to JDRF, please do so at the link below.

Donate to John Watson here (where it says Donate to John) and I can’t thank you enough for all your support. I’ll be making a hefty donation as well, later on this month. Seriously, I don’t like asking anything from the readers of this site, but I would appreciate any support!

Jun 6, 2013 8 comments
Heading Out to Cali

Over the next few months, I’ll be spending more time on the road than I will in Austin and it all begins today with Los Angeles for the Amgen Tour of California. Last year, I was in LA and SF almost as much as I was in ATX. This summer, it’ll be even more.

Expect nothing but the best on-the-road coverage for the next week or so…

May 13, 2013 Comments are OFF
Introducing Kinoko Custom Cycles
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So my post earlier today touched on this news, but here’s the official word from Tokyo Fixed, or now, Kinoko Custom Cycles:

“Our shop in Peter Street in Soho has been the heart of our operation for years now. Fast becoming known as the ideal place in central London to find high quality parts, talk to experienced and enthusiastic staff and generally be surrounded by the best frames, clothing and art that modern cycling has to offer, we’ve enjoyed our tenure there.

However, we’re extremely proud and extremely excited to announce our imminent move to Golden Square in Soho, and the launch of our new shop, Kinoko Custom Cycles. Our aim is to move from being the best place for incredible steel and rare parts to a singular destination for London’s cyclists. That means we’ve got a full fitting center with 2 top-level qualified fitters, a huge workshop, a massive space for bikes, parts, clothing and art and even our own in-house baristas in Daily Goods.

Our increase in space also means an increase in the things we can offer. We mean to be the best place in England to get a custom bike, and our work with artisanal and boutique bike builders like Tonic Fabrications, Cherubim, Donhou and Independent Fabrications affirms this aim; but we’re also stocking some of the top names in performance road bikes. Cannondale, Trek and Focus will all be gracing our showroom, alongside custom frames and our own Tokyo Fixed models. The same goes for our clothing and components – we’re still going to be championing small brands like Vulpine and Paul Components, but they’re going to be sharing pride of place with Castelli team kit and Shimano groupsets.

Now that you know what we plan to do, how does this affect you? Tokyo Fixed at 4 Peter Street will close its doors on Saturday 11th of May. Kinoko Custom Cycles will open its doors to customers the following week, with a grand launch party to be announced soon. The web-shop will remain open, and no order will go unfulfilled. Our website will change to represent its place as the online store of Kinoko Custom Cycles, and the URL’s will redirect accordingly. For the meantime, our huge moving sale continues in-store and online. We’d recommend you check it out, as we’re place huge discounts on a significant amount of our stock.”

Sounds like Kinoko Custom Cycles us going to be pretty legit.

May 7, 2013 Comments are OFF
SxSW the Lost Roll
TRUTH. You'll HATE the summer.

I’m even surprised I had the time to walk around SxSW for an afternoon but I did anyway. Something about the shitshow that descends upon this sleepy little town is very alluring for a person who likes shooting photos. The freaks mix in with the locals and the homeless cope with it the best way they know how. I lost one roll of exposed film somehow, so you’ll have to make due with these…

Tools of the trade:
Mamiya 7ii / f4 80mm
Kodak Portra 400

Apr 29, 2013 9 comments
Jetlag Video Dump

I can’t even begin to get through all the emails I’ve gotten for new videos over the past few days, so here’s a Video Dump with a few more below for your viewing pleasure…

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Apr 25, 2013 1 comment
Mission Workshop _ PiNP Shanghai: Day 01
Where you can get a wheel build or a derailleur adjusted.

Today began our insane trip to Shanghai. To be honest, I had no idea what to expect. Even after arriving Saturday night, we were all a little unsure of what awaited us in the morning. After woking up bright and early, we all met up with Tyler from Factory 5, who had the day all planned out. The Mission Workshop Shanghai trip had begun…

Check out some narrated photos in the Gallery and keep an eye on Mission Workshop’s (@MissionWorkshop) and my Instagram (@JohnProlly) during the day for updates.

Mar 24, 2013 21 comments
Berkeley Supply Co
Shop Visit: Berkeley Supply Co

Nestled in between Pearl Velo and Avery County Cycles is Berkeley Supply Co. Having opened last December, Eli has focused entirely on made in the USA clothing and accessories. For someone like me, who usually buys clothing when I travel (not a whole lot of options in Austin believe it or not), I was very impressed with the shop and environment Eli has created. Many of the brands he carries I’ve been wearing for the past few years and have had the best of luck with them. A lot of these clothes are what I would consider an investment, as Berkeley Supply Co’s slogan states “outfitter of things that last”.

Check out some photos in the Gallery. Find shop hours and info below.

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Mar 14, 2013 3 comments
Megadelux Interviews Ian Sutton of Icarus Frames
IcarusMoto-1

Here’s something unrelated to bikes but related to frame builders. I shot some photos last week of Ian from Icarus Frame‘s recently completed Triumph moto for Megadelux. His interview is now live on their site, so head over and check it out! Usually, I sway from moto content but a lot of people expressed interest in seeing more shots of this beast when I posted my Recent Roll photos earlier this month.

Feb 20, 2013 Comments are OFF
Of Usability and Accuracy
Recent Roll: Black and White Leica

When I buy a new camera, I like to use the weeks spent here in Austin to work out its nuances and familiarize myself with its basic operations. There’s nothing worse than missing a shot because you’re fumbling with the lens, or trying to be sharp with focus. A rangefinder is still new to me, having used SLRs more, I’m used to seeing through the lens for focus. You set up your shot, make focus and what you see is what you get. But not with a rangefinder.

I’m much faster this way and yet there’s something about the ergonomics of the smaller, rangefinder body that makes the learning curve very shallow. After two rolls, the camera feels better in my hands. The lenses move with ease and I don’t second guess myself. I’m planning a big trip in March and this will be my primary camera of choice, along with the Hasselblad.

But first, I have to get this camera’s use dialed in. So I shoot what I know. Faces, favorite places and subjects that I’m comfortable with. Because when you shoot a photo of even the simplest thing with a Leica, it just looks so good. Now if I can just get some decent panning shots!

See more in the gallery.

Jan 18, 2013 18 comments