Posts Tagged ‘Assos’

This Assos advert makes absolutely no sense whatsoever

September 6, 2013

assos lady ad in cycle sport magazine

Assos has an ad on page seven of Cycle Sport’s October issue. It’s for their women’s range, which is called s5.ladyEllise because pre-Windows 95 filenames are definitely ‘on trend’ right now. Naturally, that woman who is in all their ads for ladies’ clothing features in this one too. She’s not semi-naked on this occasion, but she is wearing her trademark tight latex trousers and a pair of high heels. Plus a cycling jersey, of course. And she’s kneeling.

Basically, the image is a clusterfuck of contrived notions of horniness that only the Swiss cheeseball outfitters themselves could have pulled off. Bravo, monsieurs! But it’s the trio of accompanying sentences that really makes me think Switzerland’s finest bib-short manufacturer has finally disappeared up its own Assos.

WHAT IS IT? It’s the ASSOS celebration of the year 2013! Fellas, it’s no good turning up now with a pretty girl wanting to party. It’s September! The ol’ 2013 celebrations will be over sooner than you can say, “Goodbye, Lombardia”! And here was I thinking the Swiss were experts at timing. Disappointing.

ladyElisse was created and designed as a tribute to our female customers and to please the eyes of the entire ASSOS community. Can’t help thinking you’ve fallen short of achieving these goals, lads. Looking at that image, I can see that the Assos lady wants to go out (latex pants), have sex (kneeling, head dipped at optimum ‘come-and-get-it’ angle) and ride a bike (cycling jersey) all at the same time. No woman wants to specifically do these three activities simultaneously, and no man finds that level of multitasking sexy (onerous and tiring, yes; sexy, no). Also, in the midst of your fevered imaginings, you have managed to get the name of your own range wrong: “Ellisse” has a double ‘l’, not one.

Number 13 has a special place in the ASSOS world: it’s level 13, symbolizing the manga.Yio state of mind, the perfect ride, ASSOS nirvana. Right, bear with me here, because I think I can provide some sort of translation. The “13” obviously comes from 2013. “Manga.yio” is the Assos online store. (The URL is mangayio.com, which is somewhat appropriate as their male model looks like a homoerotic mandroid.) “Manga-yio” is also the name of a half-baked philosophy which is supposed to have 13 levels of enlightenment but which appears to have only seven: level 1 is “party party” and level 2 is “sex”. Which is what it’s all about, isn’t it? Partying and sex. Sex and party, partying. There’s not much to do in Switzerland, so the Assos top brass had a brainstorming weekender that degenerated into a sex party, and in the post-orgasmic brain fug they managed to cobble together some sort of free-forming philosophy and an ad campaign to go with it. Yep, that’s it.

Well, it’s my theory anyway. And I defy you to come up with a better one.

The DYNAMITE! Five: the month in cycling, remixed. January 2013

January 31, 2013

5 DOWN Assos winter kit assos winter kit at bike show
From the Swiss outfitters who gave you The Homoerotic Mandroid comes another unique way of celebrating the male body: a pair of winter leggings that will turn your balls blue. Isn’t that what they’re supposed to prevent, guys? Cycling Weekly, which photographed The Assos Circle Of Cyan on a dummy’s gentleman’s area at the Cycle Show, has failed to provide a photograph of the garment’s rear view. Which is probably just as well.

4 UP The Urban Cyclist
In the ever-competitive world of cycling magazines, plucky newcomer The Urban Cyclist makes a strong bid for Most Fanciful Upgrade Suggestion: a £649 five-spoke carbon front wheel for the sort of bike you would normally use to get to work or go down the shops. Apparently the BLB Notorious 05 is “a serious bit of kit”, so no pointing and laughing if you see one, OK?
Urban Cyclist mag carbon wheel test

3 UP Rapha rapha shower made for two story
The fashionable literary genre of S&M appears to have infiltrated one of the mini-stories that Rapha famously sews into its garments. New Sky signing Ian Boswell spotted the intriguing tale of a soigneur climbing into a shower to get his hands on bruised and battered Richie Porte – but how does the steamy story end? James Fairbank, Rapha’s head of marketing, suggests you will need to buy all 11 variations of the new Sky jerseys to find out. Just in case he isn’t joking, here’s a suggestion for a title: 50 Shades Of Gains (Marginal).

2. UP Pinarello
To sneers and groans of disappointment, Halfords has announced it will stock Pinarellos. Who would have thought that a proud, Italian, Tour-winning marque could be sold alongside car stereos and bottles of anti-freeze? Well, for a start, anyone who has been to Pinarello’s hometown of Treviso, where the brand’s name adorns anything from kids’ bikes to sturdy shoppers – the sort of bicycles you would expect to find in, er, Halfords.

1. DOWN Lance and Oprah
Amid the fallout from Doprah, spare a thought for the hitherto unexamined effect on the caffeineistas of Old Street. Popular cyclists’ cafe Look Mum No Hands! announced it would screen Armstrong’s confession and give away coffee every time he shed “crocodile tears” – only for the shameless cheat to avoid delivering a Kleenex moment during the first night of the two-part interview. So no free brews. It’s always the fans who suffer, isn’t it?

Totally Ri.Pel-ant

November 17, 2011

Today, readers, for a short ride to Portobello Road to get a much-needed haircut, I have been “rocking” a pair of three-quarter-length trousers, legwarmers and a wooly jersey in a bucolic shade of green. I call this “look” The Urban Fop. Other “looks” I occasionally like to “rock” (i.e. particular sets of clothes I wear with an unwarranted degree of overconfidence) include The Rococo Punk (Rock Racing kit in dry-weather-only white), The Not Eddy Merckx (black and orange Molteni homage with “Kannibaal” across the chest) and One Of Those Bloody London Dynamo Persons You See Absolutely Everywhere (Dynamo gilet, Dynamo jersey, Dynamo socks and optional Dynamo girdle – an option I choose not to exercise).

Given, therefore, that I am prone to making wardrobe decisions even more varied than fashion pioneers David Zabriskie and the great Cipollini, I am not in principle against dressing up as The Homoerotic Mandroid, which appears to be the default mode that attracts purchasers of Assos garments.

Nor am I repulsed by Zegho, the Swiss manufacturer’s new foray into eyewear. How could I? It completes the “gay porn version of Terminator” style that the clothing range appears to have been striving towards. But yes, I am irked. And it is the lexicon of Assos that irks me.

Take “Ri.Pel”. Apparently this is supposed to denote a special type of lens that prevents water resting on its surface, but it looks like what a robot might plop out of its mouth instead of the human word “repel”. Similarly, an ordinary person might conceivably say “zero optical distortion”, but in the lexicon of Lugano’s boffins “zOd.Tec” somehow sounds more to the point. As for the technology that prevents the specs from slipping… well, I’m not a man of violence, but I confess my initial reaction to “clickFace” was: PunchFace.

The innovations themselves, if they work, are actually quite handy; it’s just a shame they’re obscured by such arse-clenchingly earnest pseudo-labspeak. For those aesthetes who reckon the shades look a little “90s clubber”, or a bit “sports-car-with-the-sunroof-down”, you’ve always got the option to not look at them; also, at about £400 a pop, you’re unlikely to see too many pairs on your club ride. But I like words, and once I see one, it tends to find its way into my head and stay there. I am stuck with zOd.Tec. How Ri.Pel-ant.

The DYNAMITE! Five: The week in cycling, remixed. Issue #13

August 19, 2011

5 UP Kurt Asle Arvesen
You’d never guess who we saw down the road the other day. Kurt Asle Arvesen. Yes, THE Kurt Asle Arvesen – how many Asle Arvesens are there, fer chrissakes? Kurt Asle Arvesen, Norwegian multiple Grand Tour stage winner, was briefly outside Tasty’s kebab and burger bar by the roundabout at the junction of Fulham Road and Fulham Palace Road on Sunday. Yes, alright, he was participating in the London-Surrey Cycle Classic at the time, and the chasing pack was about to thwart his brief, last-gasp attack six miles from the finish. But still, one of the most accomplished cyclists in the world, with dozens of other pros in his wake, transforming an unremarkable corner of south-west London into a glorious rush of speed and colour – it’s like seeing Green Lantern and Superman having a pint down Wetherspoon’s, or walking through King’s Cross station and stumbling across the Hogwarts Express. Transforming the quotidian into the quite extraordinary: this is cycling’s peculiar magic, lost on the quibblers and whingers who took issue with having a test-run for next year’s Olympic road race in their backyard. But let’s not let their presence cloud our opening item – we’ll come back to them later, paying particular attention to one portly Irish TV presenter and a curious twist provided by one of his telly chums…

4 DOWN Ted Baillieu
On the subject of extraordinary images, The DYNAMITE! Files can well imagine an old, creaking wooden ship conveying Cadel Evans across the seas like an exotic spice to deliver him to his homeland. In truth, however, the gap of almost two weeks between the Cuddlator winning the Tour de France and his triumphant return to Melbourne on Friday could probably be explained by the round of criteriums and sponsor-related obligations that are usually part of a champion’s lot. That 12-day period appears to have been long enough for local politician Ted Baillieu to dispense with the notion that yellow is a hard colour to wear, especially if you’re standing next to a man who earned the right to adorn himself with that same hue by winning the hardest race in the world. But Ted Baillieu’s yellow shirt and yellow tie combo has now set a fantastic precedent: if, in 12 months’ time, Nick Clegg isn’t standing outside number 10 in a gold lamé suit shaking the hand of new Olympic champion Mark Cavendish, then it will be a major breach of protocol. Mark our words.

3 UP The Assos gatecrasher
Returning to the festival of fun that was the London-Surrey Cycle Classic, it is fitting that the Olympic route encompasses Richmond Park, the unofficial home of London cycling. It is a democratic arena which welcomes the young and the old, the whippets and the whupped alike – so well done to the anonymous, Assos-clad fella who somehow smuggled himself into the peloton to proudly represent the body shape of the less sporty park user. Not even the stares of the nonplussed pros could diminish his jollity. Bravo, sir!

2 UP Cav and Millar’s little secret
What was the “INCREDIBLE news” Mark Cavendish received from David Millar shortly after the Manxman won on the Mall? Has Millar’s autobiography reached the top spot in the Waterstone’s chart? Have the two raconteurs agreed to do a series of head-to-head banterthons, in the style of Alas Smith And Jones? Or is the Scotsman really having Cav’s baby? Here’s our theory: the Manxman is off to Garmin-Cervelo because Sky was unable to match Jonathan Vaughters’ offer of an unlimited supply of his favourite sausages. You heard it here first, chums.

1 DOWN Zora Suleman

Never heard of former breakfast TV gawp magnet Zora Suleman? You’re not alone, because The DYNAMITE! Files was also unaware of her existence until she interposed herself between the considerable bulk of her chum Eamonn Holmes and the righteous ire of tweeting cyclepeople. The row began when sofa-dwelling Eamonn blamed “flamin Olympic bikes”, rather than his inability to plan ahead and make alternative travel plans, for preventing him from driving to a village fete. “Keep sport in a stadium,” he grumbled from a traffic jam on the A3 – presumably with his engine turned off, otherwise that tweet, made from his BlackBerry, is technically an offence. Given that he recently succeeded in banning mentions of his weight from a BBC comedy show, his petulance on this occasion was perhaps not entirely out of character, and he was soon rewarded with robust responses from bike racing fans all over the country (most of them retweeted by Surrey League organiser Ken Prince.) It was pointed out to the Sky presenter that he might not be singing from the same hymn sheet as his employers, who are sponsors of the British cycling team, and many people would expect a public figure to support one of the few events Britain has a chance to win gold in next year, even if the trial run does interrupt his Sunday afternoon drive. And, of course, stadium sports are a regular cause of traffic anyway, as anyone who lives near a London football ground can attest. But it was glamourous newsgatherer Ms Suleman who provided a bizarre denouement to proceedings by claiming she had been “inundated with calls” from irate members of the public who had not heard about the road closures and diversions. Well, no one claimed there wouldn’t be a few people who had escaped the reach of the TfL publicity machine, which had warned of delays for weeks. But “inundated”? Even the Daily Mail, hardly the most bike-friendly news outlet, could only attest to “some” drivers being put out. So which news outlets were “inundated” with calls? None, it seems: after being pressed, Zora admitted she is currently unemployed, and then deleted the offending tweets – although you can still see them here and here. Let’s just hope Eamonn appreciated all the hard work she put in sticking up for him!

The DYNAMITE! Five: The week in cycling, remixed. Issue #3

April 22, 2011

5 DOWN Assos
Despite it’s unhealthy fascination with Fabian Cancellara, The DYNAMITE! Files has never met anyone from Switzerland, so it cannot wholeheartedly vouch for the intelligence of the country’s male inhabitants. Yet this blog is surely not alone in reasoning that Swiss chaps who ride bicycles do not habitually slop dollops of beauty cream on their private areas in the mistaken belief that a cosmetic product sold by a women’s fashion retailer is the same as chamois cream made by a high-end cycle clothing giant, even though the two have near-identical names. So how, then, has Assos managed to ban Asos from using the name in its home country? And to prevent any further confusion, will they drop the terms “knickers” and “tights” from the Assos website? Because those things really aren’t what ladies are looking for when they Google them, fellas. Especially when they’re modelled by a homoerotic mandroid.

4 UP Alberto Contador
The pressures of infamy appeared to have finally got to Alberto Contador on Tuesday when the Clenbuterol swallower was spotted shielding his mouth in a manner not wholly dissimilar to the late Michael Jackson. But let’s not label the poor chap Wacko ‘Berto just yet or concur with the banal explanation that the band of material covering his gob was to help him cope with his hay fever during training, because there is a possibility that El Pistolero was wearing a face mask to take his gun-slinging nickname to the next level. Wardrobe updates to watch out for at his next race: spurs on the heels of his Specialized BGs and a ten-gallon hat glued to his Giro Ionos. Ride ‘em, cow-eating boy!

3 UP Sean Kelly
Speaking of bovines, Eurosport’s one-man humour vacuum Sean Kelly broke out of character on Sunday by deploying the wonderful phrase “done for the deep freeze” as a euphemism for the slaughter and dismemberment of a heifer. He was relating the story of how he won a cow in a Belgian crit and plumped for the latter option when the organisers asked if he would like to take it home alive or dead. That unexpectedly humorous anecdote delivered during a lull in the Amstel Gold would be enough for the Irishman to make The DYNAMITE! Five any week of the season, but he also gets an extra tip-o-the-hat for his steadfast refusal to pronounce the word “leopard” in the embarrassingly feigned manner laid out in Team Leopard-Trek’s infamous dictum to the cycling industry. For that one small act of defiance, he can mangle “classement général” and anglicise “Paris-Roubaix” any time he likes.

2 UP Kebabs
Fabian Cancellara’s choice of recovery food on Sunday produced another fascinating entry in the ever-expanding Dictionary of Fablish: a “Vino kebab”. Rumours that rickety carts bearing the legend “Honest Alexander’s Meaty Treats” were seen near the finish line of the Amstel Gold are wholly unfounded. Nevertheless, if you ever ingest a post-pub meal so toxic that you feel it has done something peculiar to your bloodstream, yet the sense of shame forbids you from ever admitting to ingesting it, then at least you now have a wholly appropriate term for the unfortunate foodstuff. Thank you, Fabian!

1 UP Douglas
You may have missed it, but Mark Cavendish won something last week: the Freedom of Douglas. Perusing the brief list of Manxmen who have previously garnered the same award, one can’t help noticing that Sir Winston Churchill and Norman Wisdom are no longer with us, and one of the three Bee Gees has not been Stayin’ Alive since 2003 – so it is a credit to the borough’s council members for bestowing the same honour on a 25-year-old who can raise the area’s profile among the under-50 age bracket. The Manx missile was supposed to have picked up the gong three years ago but his hectic schedule got in the way, so expect him to start exercising his freedom of his hometown sometime after the 2014 Tour de France.

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