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The Peloton: Le Temps Perdu
Throughout the spring and summer, a print-out of a spreadsheet had a space on the wall of the Rouleur office between the prints and posters more obviously dedicated to possibly relevant things (at the office of a cycling magazine, I mean) like bikes and people who ride bikes and such. This spreadsheet had a few hundred cells this way, and ten or fifteen cells that way, and it bore the words ‘Spreadsheet of Doom’ (we are, generally speaking, a very optimistic bunch), appended with, in a smaller but equally illegible hand, ‘Don't panic!’ It would change every week, adding this rider or that print or this interview, or occasionally taking away the rider, print or interview. Each writer had a column, as had each biographer and each translator (if you're lucky, you might be able to count those people on two hands). In fact, the spreadsheet continued to changed every week – or every day, or several times a day – until the print deadline. It changed a few times after that as well. In spite of the advice that would usually be scribbled on the spreadsheet within minutes of a new print ("Don't, whatever you do, panic!"), it may have inspired a panic attack or two – and it certainly got to be a lot bigger than it was meant to.
When asked how long he thought it would take to finish the small matter of the design, Andreas Töpfer, the designer, said he thought it would take two weeks; when asked how long it actually took, he laughed and said that he had no idea. Unusually, Andreas also isn't quite sure how much space the Peloton files are taking up on his harddrive – but he is confident that it's more than any other book he's ever designed.
No, The Peloton is not the sum of the logistics involved, but they were certainly involved. Then again, the peloton – the real peloton: the one that's out there in the world and riding the Tour or the Giro or some impossibly difficult Spring Classic – is, you might argue, also more than the sum of the riders who are in the peloton and were in the peloton (and, conceivably, will be in the peloton) because the peloton that Timm recorded and documented is no mere concept, and it remembers things that no single rider can recall.
- Last week was a great one for Rapha Condor JLT, all the action and images now up on the team site: http://t.co/ftBejPnnCJ
- RT @alainrumpf: Well done @mike_cuming and @raphacondorjlt winner of #TdK2013 under the scrutiny of latest drone… http://t.co/gv81uP9mHP
- In their attempt to cross the US in 24 days, @michaeltabtabai & Andrew Hudon will ‘Leave It On The Road’. → http://t.co/Per6QsCAtt
- We are delighted to announce the opening of a one-month, pop-up @RaphaCycleClub in Tokyo this summer from 22/6–21/7 → http://t.co/Jrc0EKZ9ky
- Huge congratulations to @raphacondorjlt’s @mike_cuming for winning the @TourdeKorea2013 and to @tomsoutham for best DS. #TdK2013
- @danfromnam in Corsica — outtake from our 2013 Spring/Summer shoot #corsica #beningstagram http://t.co/03A7pT9mtj
- Winner Winner Chicken Dinner ! The most important jersey of #TdK2013 hot off the press. http://t.co/Pflx0eUfdv”
- What a day... The boys keep Mike Cuming in yellow, after having to chase all day. Great performance by all.
- Just rehearsing the whole of Pacino's speech from Any Given Sunday to recite to the boys...
- UK: Thanks to all who came to to tonight’s Rapha Étape Evening in London with @CyclefitUK — one of our biggest turnouts yet.