PARK(ing) Day on Sept. 17

September 13th, 2010

One of our favorite days in the city is the annual Rebar, who are some of the most creative urban designers and planners we’ve come across. We’re teaming up with our friends from Nomad’s Kitchen to convert a few parking spots near our office as temporary picnic areas. We’ll have tables and chairs – and… Read more »

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One of our favorite days in the city is the annual PARK(ing) Day. This year’s PARK(ing) Day is on Friday, Sept. 17.

PARK(ing) Day started in 2005 by our friends at Rebar, who are some of the most creative urban designers and planners we’ve come across.

We’re teaming up with our friends from Bike Basket Pies and Nomad’s Kitchen to convert a few parking spots near our office as temporary picnic areas. We’ll have tables and chairs – and a bookshelf with reading materials to inspire visitors to read about our world of design and bicycles. We’ll have a few other surprises too.

We’re lucky to work in South Park where there’s already some green space and picnic benches – but on a beautiful day there’s more people looking for spots to sit on than there are seats in the park. So we hope to provide some additional seating areas where our neighbors and visitors can relax on.

Here’s a short history of PARK(ing) Day:

    “PARK(ing) Day is a annual open-source global event where citizens, artists and activists collaborate to temporarily transform metered parking spaces into “PARK(ing)” spaces: temporary public places. The project began in 2005 when Rebar, a San Francisco art and design studio, converted a single metered parking space into a temporary public park in downtown San Francisco. Since 2005, PARK(ing) Day has evolved into a global movement, with organizations and individuals (operating independently of Rebar but following an established set of guidelines) creating new forms of temporary public space in urban contexts around the world.”

You can learn about other PARK(ing) Day spots around the world here. Or check out the growing map of San Francisco locations.

We hope to see you and your friends at 123 South Park. And maybe we’ll run into you on our PUBLIC bikes when we visit the other PARK(ing) Day locations around the city.

PARK(ing) Day: User-Generated Urbanism from Brandon Bloch on Vimeo.

PUBLIC Supports Papergirl SF

August 12th, 2010

PUBLIC loves art. We especially love art that creates community, fun, and connects to our mission about getting more people on bicycles. That’s why we’re happy to support our friends at Papergirl SF. What’s Papergirl? “Papergirl is, in essence, a mail-art and delivery systems art project that is participatory, analogue, non-commercial, and impulsive. Submitted artwork… Read more »

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PUBLIC loves art. We especially love art that creates community, fun, and connects to our mission about getting more people on bicycles.

That’s why we’re happy to support our friends at Papergirl SF. What’s Papergirl?

“Papergirl is, in essence, a mail-art and delivery systems art project that is participatory, analogue, non-commercial, and impulsive. Submitted artwork is distributed like a newspaper but not edited or printed like it, the artwork is rolled up into bundles of 5 pieces or more and thrown to passers-by from bicycles.”

PUBLIC’s office at 123 South Park is serving as a drop-off location for art submissions. Submission deadline is Sept. 18.

We’re definitely going to help with art distribution on our PUBLIC bikes. Our baskets and panniers will come in handy to carry rolled up art.

And we’ve got several members of our PUBLIC team who studied or dabble in art so we also plan to submit our own art. Our founder Rob was a ceramics artist with a MFA to boot. Sally got her BFA in painting and drawing. Hannah is a filmmaker and photographer. And all of us are proficient at doodling during staff meetings. Some are better than others.

How can you not get excited about this project? Especially since almost anyone can participate. Submit some art. Help roll them up. And see you on the streets to help make a random person’s day that much cooler and happier.

“Anything can be submitted: prints, photos, drawings, paintings, zines, writings, textiles, etc. The only requirement is that the art be flexible enough to be rolled up, we won’t be throwing any stretched canvases around. The art pieces aren’t selected for Papergirl, we use everything that is submitted, so the artists decide what to show and have given away in distribution. The art rolls cannot be sold and are not delivered to subscribers, anyone who catches a roll is lucky, and money can’t buy luck! Throwing the work from a moving bike means there is no time for any stereotypes when choosing recipients of the art rolls, as distributors often have to react fast and spontaneously.”

Bikes & Boudoir

July 12th, 2010

We’re teaming up with our friends for a rather unique Bikes & Boudoir event this Friday, July 16 from 6-8 pm at My Boudoir on 2285 Union Street @ Steiner in San Francisco. It’s not often you see bikes and boudoir in the same sentence, but we’re joining forces with My Boudoir and Pedal Panties… Read more »

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We’re teaming up with our friends for a rather unique Bikes & Boudoir event this Friday, July 16 from 6-8 pm at My Boudoir on 2285 Union Street @ Steiner in San Francisco.

It’s not often you see bikes and boudoir in the same sentence, but we’re joining forces with My Boudoir and Pedal Panties to celebrate “Where the PUBLIC Meets the PRIVATE.”

My Boudoir is a highly regarded retailer in San Francisco’s Union Street whose mission is to fill a woman’s ever changing lingerie mood.

Pedal Panties’ Bicycle Lingerie brings you a fashionable alternative to traditional bike clothing.

Besides being with friends for happy hour, you can test ride PUBLIC bikes, get special deals on PUBLIC accessories, get 25% off great lingerie from My Boudoir, and also discounts on Pedal Panties.

We are also converting four parking spots into gathering areas in front of the My Boudoir store for this event – inspired by PARKI(ing) Day and our friends from REBAR.

You can RSVP or use Facebook to invite your friends.

World Cup And PUBLIC Stripes

June 22nd, 2010

“Pretty classy look, but that one striped sock is going to make us a global laughing stock.” Uni Watch, on the US uniforms Around the PUBLIC office most of us are big fans of the World Cup. One of our staff even set off last week to join the fun in South Africa. There is… Read more »

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U.S. soccer player“Pretty classy look, but that one striped sock is going to make us a global laughing stock.”
Uni Watch, on the US uniforms

Around the PUBLIC office most of us are big fans of the World Cup. One of our staff even set off last week to join the fun in South Africa. There is no rational way to explain our exuberance. We don’t chat about every soccer match, and we don’t suit up to play on weekends. But the truly international and democratic nature of the event is irresistible. The World Cup is so thoroughly optimistic. Where else can North Korea and Germany get equal media coverage without political bias? Where else do we even hear about Cameroon or Slovakia? The World Cup is full of engaging cultural subplots. One of them is aesthetic – the uniforms themselves are celebratory and controversial. The US stepped out a bit this year with some quirky stripes that have been turning heads.

We are big fans of stripes also. Our obsession goes back to childhood memories: goofy socks, Dr. Seuss hats, summer beach towels, surf mats. Stripes drew us to the zebra and skunk over other beasts, because they seemed to insert fantasy into the natural world. These guys were not afraid to be themselves. And they appeared on fun stuff like candy canes. Stripes also appear in an array of authoritative applications: highway markings, referee shirts, military badges and flags. Serious design personas from Paul Rand to Paul Smith have been equally obsessed with stripes. Stripes pop up just about everywhere you look.

PUBLIC Stripes

Nutcase Bike Helmet - PUBLIC StripeWe’re selling lots of items with stripes: bikes, socks, bags and more. One of our most popular items has been our Nutcase Helmet with PUBLIC colors and stripes. This pleases us for a couple reasons. First, helmets are usually a clumsy but necessary piece of gear for most riders. They are often unflattering to most faces and hairdos. But these simple helmets tend to complement most faces, while protecting the coconut. (They meet all the rigid safety standards set down by the CPSC.) Beyond that, stripes on helmets bring out smiles in the public, and whenever we can contribute to some visual pleasantry in the world, we should do it.

Yikes, Stripes

PUBLIC launches with Design Ride Manhattan

June 12th, 2010

“You meet the nicest people on a PUBLIC.” That line is a rip off of a famous Honda ad slogan used  when they introduced their cute 50cc motorcycle to the US in 1959. We launched PUBLIC last month in a more modest way in New York, but the event did bring out a lot of the… Read more »

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“You meet the nicest people on a PUBLIC.”

You Meet the Nicest People on a Honda

That line is a rip off of a famous Honda ad slogan used  when they introduced their cute 50cc motorcycle to the US in 1959. We launched PUBLIC last month in a more modest way in New York, but the event did bring out a lot of the “nicest people”. We had a happy group of 100 people riding from the ICFF Javits Center to the Tretorn store in SOHO. It was a great party. The weather was perfect, and we had a blast. This note is just a belated thank you to the fans that joined us and a promise to feature more photos and a video soon.

We had a wide range of people including Dutch designer Ghislaine Vinas (on an “Dutch” orange M3) and her cute Mom riding a classic Dutch Sparta. Other bloggers included Sam Grawe from Dwell and Vanessa Marie Robinson from For the Love of Bikes. It was a perfect NY afternoon and something of a love fest that might even warm the heart of a cynical New Yorker. You only get to launch a company once, and we feel flattered by the “nicest” people who turned up. Lloyd Alter at Treehugger summed it up pretty well:

“On the bike trail next to the West Side Highway we were passed by many on far fancier, more expensive bikes, with riders wearing colourful lycra and clip-in shoes. I thought that they were a lot faster, but we were having a lot more fun.”

There was one major complaint: “The ride should have lasted longer.” We covered three miles and cruised at a leisurely pace and the whole ride lasted less than 30 minutes. Ok, next year we will be back with a feistier ride and hopefully even more nice people.

Personal thanks to a few people who showed up and pitched in at the last minute: Khairi & Co, James Victore, Sunny, Marie, Hope, Lauren, Leslie, Larry, and the anonymous guy from Queens who joined up with us to help guide the ride.

Best,

Rob & Dan

PS. The Good News and Bad News about Orange.

You will see a lot of orange in the PUBLIC bike in Design Ride Manhattan. This is good. But we have already sold out of this color in several sizes, and we won’t have it back in stock until October.  If you want a PUBLIC this summer, this would be the best time to order.

Carnaval Comes to PUBLIC

June 4th, 2010

Last Saturday we opened up our warehouse to celebrate Carnaval with the neighborhood.  Thanks to everybody who came by and  took a spin.

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Last Saturday we opened up our warehouse to celebrate Carnaval with the neighborhood.  Thanks to everybody who came by and  took a spin.