Two mad Englishmen to pimp your bike

©BArry Sandland/TIMB - Pimp My Ride artists from Newcastle for Brussels Sunday Without Cars day

©Barry Sandland/TIMB – All done for free, all done in the spirit of the day. Brilliant.

SUNDAY WITHOUT CARS: “We came down from Newcastle last night. Eighteen hours on a bus so we could be here.”

Photographer’s notes: PIMP MY RIDE

The standard definition of an Englishman is, “Only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the mid-day sun.” While everyone with common sense, a knowledge of the environment, is sheltering, resting, the Englishman  is unaware of the insanity of what he is doing. How others stare in disbelief.

It remains today. An Englishman will get on a bus, crammed into a bus seat and suffer a day long ride through the English countryside, a relief on the ferry, and then repacked for the remaining dregs. All this so they can set up a stand in the city centre on the Sunday Without Cars and spray paint stencils onto bike frames.

I was hoping these were the guys. They were here on a project two years ago and, wanting to be part of the day, they set up a stall and brought their spare spray paint cans. The are a pair of artists travelling Europe doing murals. But they can do something a bit more basic. Like today.

Two years ago, they stencilled along the underside of the down tube, “No car, No problem”. This year, in keeping with standardising the graffiti that adorns my bike, I had a version sprayed onto the top tube. That is my bike, my favourite bike, he has been refining.

They do this for free. Some support if offered by hostels that host them and the like. Me? I bought them a couple of beers to help celebrate the day.

Apart from the bikes, they are traveling across Europe doing murals.

Come back next year, please. I have a few more bikes to get pimped. If you had a big stencil “This Is My Bike” for the down tube, I could be happy.


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