The Phone is for the Camera

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I’ve addressed this before, but I really hate having a phone with me when I’m riding. Somehow, for me, it takes away some of the freedom of the adventure of a bike ride. It doesn’t matter if I’m not really far from my house, all rides are somewhat of an adventure.

But, with the phone is a camera. And that, is something that I wish was around since I started riding. Photo taking shouldn’t replace actual viewing, but when you have the option of both, I see no reason not to document it.

My family never really had cameras when I was young. I don’t have many pictures of myself young and hardly any from when I first started racing. The only time I ever had a camera was when I started going over to Europe on the National Team. I bought a camera the first time I went and took it on most of the international trips I took. But, I didn’t take the number of pictures like we do now digitally.

I keep getting the upgrades for the iPhone. I’m a big Apple fan historically. I owe the stock. That being said, for me, the main reason for the upgrade is the camera. The camera keeps getting better and better. This new iPhone 5 doesn’t do such a leap in camera advancement, but it is enough. It has the ability to shoot photos in low light, ie bars, ect., has a faster turn around time between photo, you can capture a picture in a video and a few other things like panorama software. The camera is 8-megapixel front and rear, plenty for what I’m doing.

Anyway, having the camera with the phone is a trade off. I don’t really like having the phone, but can’t see not having the camera. Plus, having the camera connected to the phone makes exporting the pictures a snap. I guess I’ll just have to put up with the phone. It was nice to be able to really “get away” when you rode. I think that might be a thing of the past.

This picture is one of my favorites because of the story. Andy Paulin, Jeff Pierce, Roy Knickman and myself were racing the Tour of Berlin for the US National Team in 1985. We’d won the race and were feeling pretty good about ourselves heading over to England for the British Milk Race. We stayed in Berlin for a couple days afterwards and were sight seeing. This is before the wall had “come down”. So, we rode over to the wall to see it and thought it would be a good photo. So, I go over and ask these three girls if they would take a picture of us. All three said yes, and then proceeded to use their own cameras and take photos. Upon telling them that it would be cool if they used my camera, they got embarrassed. It was a good memory from that trip.

8 thoughts on “The Phone is for the Camera

  1. Parke

    Big fan of turning the phone into “airplane mode” for those occasions.
    It’s bit of a mental exercise, but once in airplane mode there’s no signal in or out – effectively you’ve bricked the phone part and just have the camera.

  2. Ben

    The camera is the ONLY reason I own an iPhone.

    Although it has saved me from be stranded due to a mechanical issue once or twice.

  3. Jason

    Steve, the new iOS 6 has a Setting called- Do Not Disturb. It operates like Airplane mode, but you can customize it a bit. You can allow certain callers through, or repeat callers in a short time period and you can even put it on a timer so that it starts and ends at a specific time. Seems like a pretty good idea to me. I am going to set it up before I head out on my next ride.

  4. Brent

    I love the bikes from the time period in the photo. They are pretty. What is your honest opinion of them? I have a nice steel frame and fork now but am curious of your thought on those bikes compaired to new school? That might make a nice blog write up.

  5. AP

    Brent, totally agree that a post comparing older bikes to newer would be interesting.

    As for the phone, I never bring mine with me when I ride. I have gotten shit from people saying “what if you have an accident?” Fortunately I still have some faith in humanity, so I dont stress it. There are times when I wish I had my camera, but then that thought melts away as I enjoy a beautiful sunrise, or a flock of geese slowly flying overhead. Its the riding without distractions, disconnecting from the world part of cycling that I love.

  6. Jody Prummer

    Brent, I couldn’t agree more. I love the old steel bikes. I have started collecting some old steel bike and restoring them. I don’t think they ride or feel as nice as my carbon bikes but they are solid machines. Part of the reason I like to ride them is it brings me back to my youth.


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