10 Of The World's Geekiest Outdoor Sports Gadgets And Garments
Not only are these items positively geekrageous, they're all pretty dubious in function. You could probably save yourself a lot of physical and emotional pain by using another available option, so try these at your own risk.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #10: Cycling Unitard
The cycling unitard is one of the most heinous pieces of clothing ever stitched together. It's like a Speedo on steroids--and nothing about that phrase is socially acceptable. From the package hugging to the gratuitous chest hair and man nipplage, the cyling unitard is simply wrong. Wear Lycra if you must, but please: make it two separate garments.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #9:Trekking Umbrella
Most hikers and backpackers are happy stuffing a poncho or lightweight rain jacket into their pack, but the eco-dweebs behind the Trekking Umbrella thought that hikers might benefit from skipping over muddy puddles twirling a pretty umbrella around. The hands-free design leaves the trekker's hands open for holding the soil analysis kit, scat identification hadbook or whatever other piece of geekery brought him out into the wilderness in the first place.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #8:Jewel Warmer
I actually use a jewel warmer; in fact, I own many. I call them boxer shorts, underwear if you will. And for when it gets even colder, I have a second jewel warmer--warmer boxer shorts. With such standard options already available, why anyone would shove a creepy, pointy hunk of fleece down their drawers is beyond me. Perhaps because he's an awkward, no-friended shut-in that likes to stuff fuzzy, foreign objects down his pants. Just takin' a guess.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #7:Pterosail
I was pretty torn about including the Pterosail. After all, it's a pretty cool piece of hybrid engineering. Then I thought a little deeper and my mind drifted toward seeing the asphalt captain that actually sees fit to ride this thing. Looking out across the choppy freeway in his whitest sailor cap, adjusting his mast and just otherwise looking like an all around rolling anus. I mean, he's sailing on the road. I can only hope that if these things ever catch on, evolution takes its proper course and highway pirates and land sharks rise up to squash those that ride them.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #6:Zeal Transcend Goggles
You know, if someone bought me these Zeal Transcend ski goggles, I'd be pretty stoked when I pulled the wrapping paper off. I'd even love the person that bought them for me just a little bit more. And I'd be a huge geek. You see, skiing and snowboarding are pretty damn fun on their own, they don't really need a set of James Bond-esque GPS-equipped goggles. Especially for $400. Every guy I've ever seen "loggin' vertical" on the slopes is just a self-obsessed douchus that misses the point of skiing in a big way. If you want to measure your speed, tracked vertical and total distance, go jogging--that's pretty dorky anyway. Otherwise, save that $400 for a weekend trip to the mountains.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #5: Bike Helmet Bug Screen
The bike helmet BugScreen is a clear example of when a "solution" is much worse than a problem. The perceived problem: bugs flying into your face when you cycle. (Incidentally, in my 25 years of cycling and mountain biking experience, I've never once had this problem.) The solution, as proposed by GBNpro: staple a fencing mask to your face and look like the world's biggest tool. If that indeed is the solution, I'll eat a couple of bugs. They're good protein anyway. BTW--the beer cans and stale pastries that you'll get hit with if you actually put one of these on your helmet will hurt a lot worse than a little horsefly.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #4:Chariot Skates
You know what's not going to bring back the trend of wheeled shoes a la the roller skates of the 70s and roller blades of the 90s? Attaching giant bicycle wheels to your feet. Yes, my friend, if you ever find yourself riding on these foot-cycles, well then you had better just roll yourself into the nearest garbage can before someone much bigger and angrier does it for you. Because, mark my words, they will.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #3: Bicycle Helmet Hats
As Saharan urban-commuting nomad above demonstrates beyond the slightest shadow of a doubt, putting a hat on top of a bicycle helmet doesn't look any more stylish than the helmet itself. Plus, it covers all the vents on an already hot, sweaty piece of headgear. Just admit it--the bicycle helmet is ugly and awkward, but your life is worth it. If you wear a hat on top of your helmet to make it look better, I'm not so sure your life is worth it.
Note to bicycle accessory manufacturers: as you can see, the market is already pretty crowded with geeky cycling add-ons, so stop. Now.
Geekiest Sports Gadget #2: Pumgo Scooter
Watch the video above and just try not to get a little angry at these geektastic, glut-pumping excuses for humanity. I dare you. I don't even need to go into the flourescent yellow jacket and corporate scooter-hound because the Pumgo is just so lame of and in itself. And I still don't quite understand how the physical benefits of this leg-pumping scooter are any better than bicycling--it's pretty much the same damn motion. Only cycling isn't such a doltastic abomination (assuming you steer clear of some of the aforementioned entries).
Geekiest Sports Gadget #1:Water Fanny Packs
Hey guy, just because it's holding water, you call it a waist pack and you're a big, important running star, doesn't mean that it stopped being a fanny pack--i.e. the geekiest piece of tourist clothing in the past 3,000 years. Wear a hydration pack, hold onto your water bottle or stuff a Polar Springs down your short shorts, but if you belt H20 around your mid-section, you look like a rube.
Originally published: July 2010