It’s no secret that I’m not particularly thrilled with the use of the word “RAD” to describe cars. Almost nobody who took the whole “RAD” idea seriously even owned a car back in the Eighties. If they did, it was some kind of ragged-out station wagon with a bike rack welded to the liftgate or a VW Thing kitted out for surf and skate, not a Supra or BMW M6 or what have you. So this is what the kids call “appropriation” nowadays. I like it even less when someone uses the actual logo from the Talia Shire movie, which feels like adding insult to injury.
Oh well. The above short film, starring Bill Allen from the original RAD movie, is far more in the spirit of things. It takes place in and around Bentonville, AR, which has decided to make itself a mountain-bike Mecca. The riding is first rate and then some. It shows how far we’ve come in the past thirty-five years. Just as importantly, it makes the point that you’re only really rad if you’re existing in the moment, not looking to the past.
Another video of note: professional BMX racers (and Red Bull pump track champions) Caroline Buchanan and Barry Nobles remake the original “Helltrack” race here. Sadly, Caroline and Barry’s relationship didn’t last; he left her for a girl who looked just like Caroline but didn’t race BMX. Which suggests that my less-than-RAD insight of 1987 — namely, you’re not going to have a successful relationship if you prioritize your little bike over meeting someone — is more general than I thought!