30 January 2009

Red Light Poetry

I just bought "Showa Japan" written by Hans Brinckmann (Tuttle) and managed to read until page 72 when finally I came about something interesting. A haiku, written by every body's darling Beat Takeshi, commenting subtly on the state of minds in Japan:


[Akashingo / minna de watereba / kowakunai]
[The light is red - but / if we all cross together / it won't be scary]

I do not want to start a discussion whether is is just or not to cross red lights - I basically believe that everybody has to make his decision on his own. But I like this haiku very much and I believe that it deserves a place on the 2009 Team Positivo Espresso jerseys.

Inside a saddle bag

After being married for more than 16 years I never stop to marvel at the complete chaos which can be maintained within a women's handbag. My wife owns a great variety of bags and all of them, even if not used for months or even years, are full with all kind of stuff. So I wondered, can the same be said about saddle bags?

In order to answer that question, I posted a thread at the TCC website and asked for comments what kind of stuff should be in a saddle bag when riding out. The answers were most interesting, you can read the details here.

Below is an intermediate summary of the results

Some hex keys and plus/minus drivers are a must.

Punctured tire

I believe this is regarded as the number one problem on rides so everyone has at least tire levers, spare tires and patches with them. The info about the easy patches was particular helpful, so I will use them only for temporary repair in the future. Also I have bought some tire patches from park Tool in case there is some serious damage to the tire. But I don't think this has as high a priority as a punctured tube.

Pumps or CO2 Cartridges

I have to agree with some of the comments, that working with CO2 cartridges can go wrong and that one only has one chance. I remember a particular incident where three of us thought be would have 5 cartridges to inflate a punctured tired and we failed nevertheless (in fact we had only four with us, two were empty on the valve, another one blow the first tube, and we forgot to close the valve when we screwed the last cartridge on).

The valve itself I use is very small, so from a volume point of view I guess the cartridge solution has a point nevertheless.

One more disadvantage is, that you cannot take the cartridges with you on a flight. Neither in your suitcase, nor in your hand baggage.

My personal feeling is: I had pumping, so I would prefer the cartridges but overall it is a very balanced issue.


This is a point I completely overlooked. But broken spokes happen from time to time on a ride and if you have a wheel with only a few of them, it is rather impossible to continue to ride. (like my G3 Campa Zonda wheels). Of course the reasonable choice is to buy a wheel with 28 or so spokes (with standard replacements at every bikeshop in Japan) , but they look so .... boring.
I think it is a good idea to pack a tool/wrench and a spoke on a ride, but for me that is impossible, as the bloody Campa spokes are different left and right AND rear and front, so this would mean four replacement spokes. No way.


Standard types can be bought at most of the combinis, so I don't think that they are really necessary. (also some of them tend to leak and to clean the acid in your saddle bag is comparable to the Exxon Valdez disaster.
Latex Glove

This was the most surprising idea. The only time I got in contact with them was for rectal cancer prevention. But I guess that is something you perform rather seldom on each other during a ride out in the country side.

Good Luck Charm

Of course. How could something like this been have possibly overlooked? Small types, made out of carbon or titanium are preferred. Otherwise an arrow or an 絵馬 with the pleas written on them for every ride are also decreasing the risk of accidents, punctures and general poor performances. Should always have a small bell attached to.

Electrical Tape

I think this is also a very good idea. A German craftsman if called for to a house, would invariably carry a set of tools with him, such as screwdrivers, hammer etc. with which he would work on a problem.
However, when I was living in (countryside) China, a plumber would normally come without any tools but always with a roll of duct tape. Believe me, there is no problem in China which cannot be solved with the appropriate dossis of duct tape. Leaking water pipe? - 100 meter of duct tape will do the job. Broken light on your car due to crash? - duct tape first. High unemployment rate in the cities? - duct tape over the mouth if protesting.

Even the Beijing Olympic stadium design, as one can clearly see, was inspired by random wrapping of huge duct tape over a standard stadium.
So electrical tape is a very good idea. In can help if the handlebar tape unravels because one is too stupid to do that properly. And probably it can be used to repair tubes, tires, tie spokes together, provide first aid and silence your wife and kids.

In Japan there is a wide variety available and I bought some in nice colors (yellow, grey, red) for 37 Yen a piece at the local home depot equivalent. I used it as a finishing tape on the handle bar - the stripes provided with the handle bar tape are ridiculous short. Looks great now. Actually very Chinese.

Finally I found Edogawakikomans idea very good to have a wad of freshly printed 10.000 Yen notes in a brown envelope printed "LDP" on it in the saddle bag; in case something goes seriously wrong. Better to buy a new bike with them instead of wasting time with repair.


To expand a little on David's traffic-accident theme, here is a thought-provoking short animated film about two-wheeled traffic accidents (motorcycles, scooters) produced by my little brother.

500 miles is not enough...

A motorcyclist enjoys his freedom ... some moments later he fights for his life.

Better (but heavy) version can be downloaded here.

29 January 2009

Let's Be Careful Out There

Today's Nikkei Online reports, "overall road accident deaths [in Japan] for 2008 dropped 10.3 percent from the previous year to 5,155, falling for the eighth year in a row."

"The number of pedestrian victims went down by 222 to 1,721 and driver or passenger victims by 303 to 1,710. Traffic deaths involving motorcycles came to 990 and those involving bicycles 717, the survey said."

I was suspicious that the article did not say whether cyclist or motorcycle fatalities were going up our down. The NTA website had a link to a spreadsheet with the raw numbers (through end of November 2008), and I was relieved to see that, through that date at least, the bicycle fatality number was down 5% from 2007, and it looks like 2 out of 3 cyclist fatalities were over 65 years old. So the odds are not too bad, at least for the next 18 years or so.

26 January 2009


From our intrepid correspondent Billy M.

"Without our fearless leader, who had exerted too much pace of a very different kind until the wee hours, we set off at 7:05 like ronin - bereft of their Lord. Ben and Chris turned back at Tama and Alex decided to break all known records in reaching the Source of the mighty Tama Gawa. A clearly determined David was soon knocked out through key components dropping off.

That left M and M. Big German M set the pace and manfully provided an excellent shield for most of the rest of the ride. It was a terrific day of sunlight, though at zero do crossing our favourite hill, which Big M did quite a bit faster than Billy M.

An attempt to find the new road of last week, with the steep bit that killed Alex, proved too much for us. We did find the tank road ok, and all was going well until I joked to Big M that a one legged cyclist (with a very smart shiny chrome mechanical leg) had beaten us up a hill. That was too much for Germanic pride to take. With a parting cry of "I have excess energy to burn off" Big M went in hot pursuit of the chrome legged man.

Bereft of the comforting sight of Big M's bottom I plodded on home, getting back by the magic hour of 1:00 pm. Luckily I was in the ofuro before the clock chimed.

(For those who have not wasted hours learning Japanese "Billy" is the term used to denote the person who comes last!!)"

From our intrepid correspondent David Litt.

"Well, a group did show up on the street in front of my house, we met Michael Kraehe at 8AM at Tamagawahara-bashi, Chris and Ben headed back early, and 4 of us (Michael K., Michael H., Alex K and I) made it to the turn off to cross the river and head for Takao. Alex said goodbye to just go up to the end of the path and turn around, ... and a minute or two later my rear derailleur, which had not been shifting smoothly, stopped working completely -- a severed cable at the brake hood lever. So I turned around and only the "2 Michaels" headed on toward Takao.

(I did the same ride backwards yesterday -- out One-kansen and the North side of Lake Tsukui, and a slightly longer loop, out Doshimichi and over Rte 76 to Sagamiko. Snow flurries on the hill outside Takao, and damned cold without any sun, but a good workout.)"
Photo from my Saturday ride -- on Route 76 North of Doshimichi:

The same view on a much nicer day in mid-November:

Meanwhile earlier in Tokyo our not-so intrepid correspondent Jimmy Shinagawa was found wanting..

"My dinner at Aquavit ran on later than planned and my pre-ride preparation took a turn for the worse at Lebaron around midnight.. nursing a mild hangover after not enough sleep was not how I had hoped to spend Sunday, but so be it. Until next week."

25 January 2009

Blown by the wind

I decided to go out for a ride on Saturday as the weather for Sunday looked a little uncertain. With hindsight that was probably a mistake as Sunday turned out to be perfectly blue sky and only modest wind, while on Saturday I had a partially clowdy sky and a lot of wind. At first, that was a nice thing, eventually it forced me to cut my trip a little short.

As I had heard so many bad things about route 246, I decided to try it out to work my way into south-westerly direction. Indeed, there was plenty of traffic, and very fast one, but maybe not as bad as I had heard, perhaps because it was Saturday morning. I had a nice tail wind so I even dared to take a few over the overpasses at 40-50km/h when the lights had stopped the traffic behind me.

The 467 from Yamato to Fujisawa was equally smooth, albeit only one-laned. 1h40mins and almost exactly 50km into my ride I arrived at Enoshima. An average of 30km/h red lights included - not bad.

From the beach, Enoshima looks almost like Mont St. Michel... I rode onto the island to explore it a bit. In the all the years in Japan, I had never been on Enoshima, and actually only once on the beach in front of it.

The entrance to the shrine mount looked tempting, but as I still had quite some distance in front of me and wanted to be back home early to make it to an orchestra rehearsal that evening, I decided to postpone a visit until another time.

Heading on route 134 on the coast towards Zushi, I found myself in a surfers' paradise. 

I had to wipe my eyes several times before I really believed it. Yes, there were literally hundreds of surfers in the ice-cold water or braving an ice-cold wind into or out of the water.Well, if Californians can surf in summer in a relatively cold Pacific, why can't Japanese prove that no water is cold enough? This spectacle extended for many miles along the coast, and into a few more bays. I felt a lot better about cycling in the snow having seen this. I would never be that crazy!

Now on the Miura Peninsula, I had my tail wind back and was cruising south on route 134. The main road is not particularly scenic and there was rather a lot of traffic, so taking a few detours onto the coast was all the more rewarding.

Arasaki was particularly scenic.

From Misakiguchi to Misakimachi, the road turned into one large parking lot. It wasn't much fun working myself through it. Misakimachi itself was quiet as the traffic was not going into town, and I enjoyed the view of the rather large port.

The bridge over to Jogajima did not look particularly inviting, nor did the island itself when viewed from the port. So I skipped it, wondering what I may have missed.

But quickly something else required my full attention. Now heading east on route 215 along the coast, the wind was becoming nasty. It was getting stronger and started coming in gusts from several directions. I found myself fighting head wind at a creeping 20km/h or breaking while going downhill because the gusts were moving me on the road like the waves had been moving the surfers on the sea, only less predictable and less enjoyable.

At the port town of Minamishitauramachimatsuwa (that's a mouth full - no kidding!), I took some reprieve by taking a detour through the radish fields of Tsurugizaki. Actually, almost all of southern Miura seemed to be one giant radish field. Yet here with a view of the ocean, it looked particularly beautiful.

Through the somewhat isolated and desolate fisher village Makuchi I returned back to onto route 215 which was now leading me north. Eventually I succumbed to what had by then become almost a storm that was blowing sand from the beaches onto the road. At Miura-Kaigan, I conveniently caught a Limited Express back towards Tokyo.

Getting of at Keikyu-Kamata, I was hoping for a smooth ride up on Kannana. Things started promising as there was nothing like a storm in Tokyo. Apparently a little bit of head wind, but having just braved gust and gails, it felt like tail wind to me...  But I soon ran into an obstacle of a different kind: another parking lot extending for a few miles on Kannana. Eventually I passed the sight of a car crash that was already being taken care of by police (apparently no injuries), and beyond that I had a relatively unhampered ride back home.

On another day with hopefully better wind conditions, I must do also the east side of Miura Peninsula.


23 January 2009

2009 Mt.Fuji Hillclimb...lottery!

According to a reliable source (GORO), participants in this year's edition of the Mt.Fuji Hillclimb will be chosen by lottery (just like the immensily popular Norikura HC in August). Fortunately for us, there is allegedly a special quota of foreigners...
WHEN: JUNE 7 (SUN), 2009
APPLICATIONS: MARCH 2 (MON), 2009 (only thru Internet)

22 January 2009

Pedro's Toothbrush

I came across this brush for cleaning the rear cog of a bicycle at Bic Camera in Yurakucho after having lunch at Muji Meal yesterday. Please note the fine print bottom left.
Well I guess you need teeth like a horse to use this brush.

How to use the tooth brush and avoid dreck all over your frame...neat & tidy and no splashing!

21 January 2009

Entry-level bike

My assistant has got excited by our adventures described on this site and would like to buy a road race bike. Any recommendations for an entry-level bike that she can buy easily in a shop in Tokyo?

20 January 2009

Out of costume

19 January 2009

Everything you always wanted to know about compact cranks. Or perhaps not.

One of the recent posts on this blog about the pros and cons of standard and compact cranks really hit me. I started to think day and night about cranks and I could barely sleep, drink, eat or ride my bike, activities which are said to be the mission of the Positivo Espresso team. In case you forgot, please look at the backside of your team jersey.

Lately I have been attested to have only "decent knowledge of bicycles" by an the Japanese outpost of a large US bicycle company, which name is similar to the German word DRECK. So before making any further statements about compact cranks and which one to buy, I did a long research on the web which lasted until today. Probably there are many things you know already, but perhaps there is the one or other guy out there with the same poor level of bicycle technology level as I have.


The reasonable choice : Shimano Ultegra SL FC-6650-G
Yes Shimano, which is not really considered cool because everybody has them, but otherwise everybody would agree that most of the products they are doing are of very good quality and durability and reasonably priced. In particular if you don't buy them in Japan. Also the Ultegra design is in my viewpoint good, much better than the bulky Dura Ace design which I really, really dislike. And do you hear often of quality issues or product recall with Shimano components? And you can get spareparts everywhere in Japan on short notice- try this with Champagnolo or Side (my experiences).

This one is all aluminium but has a hollow crank which helps to reduce weight to 808gr, including bottom bracket. This compares to around 650 gr for more expensive products without bottom bracket weight. No need to resort to carbon here.

One can have different crank arm length between 165 and 175 mm, but chainrings are available only in 50/34. But this should be OK. The BOD [bolt cicrle diameter] is 110 mm (standard crank 130 mm) so you should be able to use chainrings of other makers as well.

Is designed for a bottom bracket of 68/70 mm with English threads - the standard we all have. And can be bought for example here for 161 Euro / 20.000 JPY which is very reasonable indeed.

So enough talked, I went to Nagai-San's shop this week and ordered one to replace my Lehman-Force, sorry SRAM Force standard crank.

The Carbon One : FSA SL-K Light Compact Road
Apart from the usual suspects Shimano, Campagnolo and SRAM, FSA has a very wide range of cranks in their product portfolio, road compact cranks alone account for 8 types.

This one is already on the bikes of Ludwig and Bryon mounted and so far experiences have been good. Although the outside of the crank is carbon and it is described as "hollow" is it not: There is an internal I beam (made of aluminium?) inside, providing the required strength and stiffness.

Thus the weight with bottom bracket is 780 gr, not too much lighter than the much more cost competitive Ultegra. But the design looks good with the carbon crank which is available with length between 170 and 180 mm.

For a carbon fork the price tag of 455 Euro / 57.000 JPY is in the middle of the competition, being more expensive than a Shimano Dura Ace (not Carbon) and in the same class as a Campagnolo Record.

There are not so many infos on the FSA site about other techical specifications. It seems that you can also use this crank with a bottom bracket of ceramic bearings of which Bryon was much impressed.

Let's spend heaps of money : THM Clavicula
THM is a German manufacturer of high performance carbon components. This crank called Clavicula (I guess it means collor bone) weights only 410 gr, of course without the chain rings which needs to be purchased separately (BCD 110 mm). Can be mounted an English threads bottom brackets 68 mm, cranks are available with 170 to 175 mm length.

It looks perfect, very sleek, question is if this is really needed.
Please dive deep into your pockets: 920 Euro / 115.000 JPY needs to be paid. Perhaps it would be better to buy another cheap bike with compact crank for this amount of money.

Apart from this, there are many other makes on the market for compact cranks, I list below the most interesting ones:
And it is also interesting to note that some makers do not sell their cranks any more, for example DEDA and Ritchey.
I summarized a lot of the information in an xls file, if you are interested to get it, please send me a quick note.

Race Info : Tokyo Enduro Race Saturday 7. March

I just saw an info from EDGKM at the TCC website about an endurance race hold on 7/3/09 from 8 to 12 which looked interesting. The deadline for application is Feb 6th, but as usually it would be safer to apply much before that.

This is NOT a mamachari race!

The race is hold in Saitama, Toda City less than an hour by train from Shinagawa. Four hours endurance race on a
flat track, teams of 3 to 6 riders are accepted. 8.000JPY/rider. I guess we could go there early in the morning and be back for tea.

This looks like a nice race to start the season and it would be nice if we could get a team of 3 to 4 riders ready. Please let me know if you are interested. More information in Japanese is here.

18 January 2009

Roller coasting with the Positivo Espresso Crew

Early on Sunday morning Positivo Espresso assembled a large group of eight riders on the shores of the Tamagawa. At good speed we first cruised along the river, overtaking countless less competitive Japanese amateurs, the riding along Asakawa until we arrived at the 7-Eleven in front of Takao station, the Positivo Espresso approved refreshment stop.

Since a long time we stop there, nowadays it is not any longer question if we need food or drinks, like pavlov's dog we are stopping there. No matter that there are combinis further down and further up the road en masse. This is our combini.
On the way we lost David and almost lost Alex who was able to arrive almost at the end of our break.

Ludwig and me felt good, so we went for a fast ride up Otarumi Toge. We wanted to draft each other up, however our plan failed already at the start point where Ludwig overtook a BMW on the right at the lights, while I stayed behind the car. I was not able to recover the gap which was then created and could see Ludwig speed ahead in front of me at the steeper parts of the climb.

I felt really good, but made only a disappointing 15:27 min up to the top, way below my best times. Ludwig did well. I was although not completely exhausted and I felt that I could have raced a little bit faster if I had really tried. For a winter TT the result wasn't too bad.
We waited for the rest of the group on top of Otarumi. Ludwig tried to take a group photo with the camera resting on a stone on the other side of the road. With the help of our precise information, he was able to make some nice pictures of cars racing by.

Here he is positioning the camera.
And here he is asking for some additional information which were unfortunately not at all correct.

There was already some ice rain on top of Otarumi and we were wondering if we could continue. But as usual the weather on the other side of Otarumi is different than on the Tokyo side and once we were back in the lower reaches the situation was OK.

We continued towards Tsukui lake where we take a very nice road over a small hanging bridge and then along the North side on a very small scenic road. Just wonderful and incredible that we haven't found this road earlier.

We then continued to ride towards the Hiroshi-Mitsubishi tank training range road, which we somehow missed and then along the Minami Tama One Kanbu towards the Tamagawa. This is a very nice and fast road indeed with many ups and downs. One could race there at a good pace and we were testing ourselves against two younger Japanese riders.

Unfortunately there was a group of apparently non-Japanese cyclists who drove through the occasional red traffic light. Mistakingly believing that Ludwig was the leader of that unidentified group, he was approached and reprimanded by the Nalsima cycling police. We others watched interested as he got approached, but didn't felt much called upon and rather less inclined to join the discussion. In true local fashion, Ludwig took all the responsibility on himself even though he didn't really feel any.

After going home I thought about what the guy said and I would like to give him some credit because his arguments were not along the lines "This-is- the-rule-in-Japan-you-know, an argument which one hears so unnecessarily often. These days "rule" is also frequently replaced by "compliance" which already has made inroad into general usage. Bad enough, there should be a law confining usage to business matters.

We parted at the Tamagawa river and I rode home through Yokohama where I arrived after 118 km in the saddle. It was a very pleasant and fast ride with a good group. Although we were at different performance levels we could stay together and have fun. I had plenty or opportunities to climb, draft, go fast downhill and make the occasional sprint, I guess this is also true for the other riders.

Could do this more often, it doesn't need to be the weekend 180 km tour every weekend.

Columbus at the shores of Arakawa

The story goes that Columbus convinced the Portuguese queen that there must be a different route to travel to India than travelling to the the East. Ludwig convinced me, that there should be a different route riding to Ome than going to the West along the Tamagawa.

So one Friday morning we met at Hamamatsucho and started our discovery ride. First we travelled to Shin-Kiba (unfortunately not in true TCC fashion over the Rainbow bridge) and checked out the estuary of the Arakawa where we almost immediately discovered an island emerging from the sea.

Provided that you are living in Tokyo, the existence of this island is thanks to all your generous contributions in form of garbage which is disposed just after Yumenoshima in a new giant landfill (so far no Giant landfill product recall).

But there is also a nice park and one appreciates the fact that the sea is close.This is the right time to break a sec

Many of you, especially the hill climbers among you, might not know what is to the South of Tokyo. You know that to the West there are the splendid mountains of Okutama, to the North there are the even more beautiful mountains of Chichibu and to the East, well, to the East there are many golf courses in Chiba.
So when I spoke to the hill-climbing bike population of Tokyo, I often heard the opinion expressed that Tokyo is a city in a valley, surrounded on all four sides by mountains, of which one the highest are to the South and impossible to climb.
All lies. It may come as a surprise to you but Japan is in fact an island, and even more surprisingly, surrounded by the sea. And this sea touches Tokyo in the South and is exactly where the Arakawa ends. Ludwig and me just discovered that on Friday.

So Ludwig and me "took a mental note" (one of the most notorious quotes of my previous boss. It basically means: "Don't bother me with that. I will forget once I have left the room.") to tell our king about this magic island once we return to court. Then we fiddled our way around Shin-Kiba and arrived at the bicycle superhighway along the Arakawa.

Wow, this is something riders from the Tamagawa can only dream about. If Arakawa is route 246 at approximately Atsugi, the Tamagawa is a side street to Takeshita Dori in
comparison. Strangely enough, a 20 km/hr speed limit for bicycles is enforced at the Arakawa. If 20 km/hr is appropriate for the Arakawa cycling road, than comparatively in relation to the width of the cycling path, 1.89 km/hr for bicycles must be enforced at the Tamagawa I reckon.

In one word, flat, wide, beautiful weather, good tailwind initially and Ludwig
and me went fast in a draftline for at least 20 km. We tried some race tactics, were frolicking around and trying to sprint away from each other after coming out of the draft.

In no time we arrived in Kawagoe where we continued along the Iruma river.Here the cycling pathes are much narrower and there are some unpaved stretches.

I had a flat tire, and found out the hard way that my carbon cartridge valve is not properly sealed. By the way, later at home I tried to fix my tire with the Panaracer patch. This is very easy to apply as the patch itself is very thin and easy to glue on the tube. Does anybody else have experience with this patch, especially in terms of durability? Is this only something to finish the ride or can the repaired tube than used as it would be new?

The cycling path around Kawagoe was OK but not great. Finally we found our way on the road to Ome, where we crossed a very small part of Chichibu and then finally arrived at our beloved Aurore bakery in front of the station where we just by chance met Denis. Yes, we have done it, we found the East passage to Ome and were greeted by the aborigines.

Then, after having the obligatory Royal Milk Bread, we continued along the Tamagawa to Sekidobashi where we made a final break. It was already dark and I decided to take a train home, while Ludwig continued along the Tamagawa to his house.

Basically we had done one complete loop around Tokyo (185km from and to Ludwig's house), something like a grand version of the Yamanote Challenge.

Unfortunately when I came back to the court at home rather late, the queen was not very amused by my brave endeavours which took slightly more time then envisaged, and sentenced me to two hours of math home works with my son.

Quarq Powermeter

After a cold morning ride (including a few minutes of stinging sleet falling in Hachioji and again on the West side of Otarumi Pass), what better way to enjoy a Sunday afternoon than to stop by Positivo and have Nagai-san install my new Quarq Cinqo powermeter. It works like a charm, immediately was "found" by the Garmin 705 (ANT+ compatible) computer. Just rode it around the neighborhood, but so far, a great piece of technology. And for David J.'s benefit, I should mention that this means NO COMPACT CRANK for me during this winter/spring training. I'll need to learn to ride again like a real man.

17 January 2009


The best food ever invented has now finally arrived on the counters of Japanese food retailers. Please note the "cyclist only" design. I knew it right from the start that this will enhance my performance.

16 January 2009

Cyclists in packs found to be rough riders: study

"CYCLISTS riding together in packs can take on the characteristics of a "race without the officials", with a new study suggesting they tend to hog lanes, ride side-by-side and ignore red lights.

The authors of Cyclist Bunch Riding: A Review Of The Literature from the Accident Research Centre at Monash University examined police video footage of a group of cyclists and saw behaviour one might expect from riders in the Tour de France.

The study found the behaviour of the cyclists breached all three cycling road rules included in the research. "The cyclists were riding more than two abreast for the entire footage, almost the whole ride the cyclists were in more than one lane, and almost half of the red lights faced were ridden through," the study reported." sydney morning herald

Surely not? Via Alex K.