Ask Stevil

Ed. – It has been a minute since we heard from our in-house Dear Abby, so we’re happy to have his wisdom back in digital print. This is the feature formerly known as Answers from a Bottle.


How many times can you wear a helmet before it needs to be washed? And how do you wash it?

This totally depends on your tolerance of your own stink, your personal PH balance, alkaline, acidity, how much water you drink vs. how much malt liquor you drink/garlic you eat, etc. and so on. Personally, unless I’ve spilled a coffee on it or whatever, I’ve never washed a helmet. If the pads are rotten, and smell like you’re riding around with a dead cat on your head, then just pitch them and put some new ones in. You likely got a replacement set when you bought the helmet, and if not, literally every bike shop in the world will probably have a drawer full that they’d be happy to offer up to you. That’s why helmet manufacturers make the pads replaceable. They are thinking of both your safety, your hygiene, and the sense of smell of those around you.


How do you decide which shirts to cut the sleeves off? Are all sleeves bad?

I have always been a fan of sleeveless cowboy shirts, or really for that matter, any collared shirt at all, though when I was in high school, I’d lop off any old t-shirt and not bat an eye As a matter of fact, I still have the Germs shirt I sleeved in 1988, though no longer wear it because the cuts go down to the rib cage, and I’ve changed my aesthetic since those days. I don’t think any sleeves are bad, I just think most of them are dumb.


If your friend has a nicer bike than you, is it ok to push them off the trail while riding? Or is violence never the answer?

I’d say it’s kinda up to you, but let me answer your question with a question. Is it a situation where if you push them off the trail, they might suffer grievous bodily injury, or just tip over in the sand? If it’s the former, I’d say probably not, but if you both are into a friendly little derby/tire buzzing/wheel flicking pine cones into one another’s paths, and you are engaging into said activity with the understanding that despite the fact that they have a nice bike also likely have the skill to take you down in return, then all’s fair, baby. On the chance you decide to do it and they aren’t on the same page, they might end up with a couple fewer teeth, and you might just wind up with one fewer friend.

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  1. eborling says

    I’m still calling Dear Scabby.

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