It's been said by People Who Know that a good mission statement is crucial to operating a successful business. Fundamentally, this seems sound, as it can be difficult for any business or human to keep an eye on the horizon through the endless fog of distractions, complications, and confusions of day-to-day operation, and a good mission statement can help steer the ship. I have reservations about writing a mission statement for Yawp, however, because I've come to distrust mission statements. Many of them are cluttered with empty promises and resemble campaign speeches. Just because a recorded voice keeps telling me that my call is important doesn't mean it's true. Ultimately, though, Yawp needs a mission statement because you deserve to know Yawp's intentions.
Bicycle technology is advancing as quickly as computer technology, which means that if your bike is three years old, it's the equivalent of dial-up internet. Even if you bought a brand new bike yesterday, there was a bike released today that is better.
The pace of technology can feel frustrating. Sometimes parts for a bike that's three or four years old are not available. Maybe you finally got around to buying a 29'er about two weeks before the 27.5 craze hit. Chances are, everybody at the trailhead is talking about some gizmo that you don't have. Conversely, the pace of technology is pretty awesome. Whether you wear out your bike in one year or in ten, it's replacement is going to be even better.
Yawp is just as interested in new bikes and gear as anybody. However, if you happen to be riding an older bike, it doesn't mean you're having less fun, getting less exercise, or achieving less of whatever your goal may be. If you're racing competitively, obviously you should be riding one of the lightest, stiffest bikes available. For many of us, however, all we really need to ride our bikes today is maybe a new tire and some chain lube. It's wants versus needs; Yawp's goal is to never confuse the two.
If you want the latest gear, say bib shorts that shave and lubricate your legs every time you put them on, we'll get them for you. If your bike just needs a cable adjustment, we won't try to sell you a new wheel and a bearskin hat.
No matter what kind of bike you ride, and no matter how old it is or who made it, we are happy you're riding your bike, and we want you to keep riding.
The word Yawp comes from a poem by Walt Whitman called "Song of Myself." Here's the relevant stanza:
I too am not a bit tamed--I too am untranslatable;
I sound my barbaric YAWP over the roofs of the world.
It's not that Yawp is for barbarianism. Yawp is happy to live in a time when indoor plumbing and underpants are in fashion, and when one can caravan from Denver to Crested Butte without having to worry too much about bandit assassins or cholera. Yawping barbarically is important, though, because at times our culture can keep us insulated from ourselves, our environment, and our enthusiasm. Cycling happens to be the activity that, for Yawp, reconnects us to these things. Cycling makes us Yawp. If you know what we're talking about or are curious to learn, please stop by.