How we got here
If you can remember back to when the world was going to end in 1999 due to the Y2K bug, that's when I created my first website on geocities in the nested subfolder/subfolder/subfolder. It was a place to upload my travel photos and journal of adventures backpacking around South America, the highlight for early readers was my tale of being robbed at gunpoint in Ecuador. That website faded into insignificance while I lived in London after I took the 'red pill', became a bike courier and had my eyes opened to the next level of 'bike'. It was in London that I discovered track bikes or 'fixed wheel' bikes, which were typically only ridden on velodromes. When I returned home to Melbourne, I started infecting friends, and friends of friends with this bike 'disease' by exposing them to these unusual bikes, soon to be known as 'fixies'. In the summer of 2003 I could count on one hand the number of people riding track bikes, and we all knew each other by name, or more readily by our bikes.
As we have come to learn in the last years, a disease can spread rapidly and when I launched 'fyxomatosis.com' in 2004 the 'game changed'. fyxomatosis was a play on fixed-wheel bikes and myxomatosis, a disease introduced into Australia to control the wild rabbit population, and the name of a Radiohead song which came out that year.
The site, like the other was a travel journal, of the bike culture in Melbourne. Once I departed to travel North America, I took people on that journey with me, even if the site was infrequently updated and you definitely could not buy anything. The audience and appetite for 'fixies' grew globally when I made it back to Melbourne in early 2006. After a year on two wheels, working in Vancouver, San Francisco, New York, London (again) and Berlin, delivering parcels, taking photos, racing events and making friends - I started sourcing 'track bikes' from wherever I could find them in Australia, shipping them to new homes around the globe. The sourcing and selling of bikes opened me up to a huge network of people around the globe, and curating custom builds and photographing them was at the core of fyxo content around this time.
Around the same time, I put a flyer up on my website for some events. 'The St Francis Fun Ride', 'C.O.P' and then 'Melburn Roobaix'. I plastered the flyer in every bike shop and cafe that would allow and had an amazing response of 100 to that first Roobaix. As we basked in the afternoon light of Brunswick Velodrome, I kept getting asked, 'When is the next one?! You've got to do that again.'
Roobaix rolled around as an annual affair, doubling in field size each time until we capped the field in 2011, which was around the time Melodie quit her role with Cisco Systems to work full-time on this 'expensive hobby' of buying and selling bikes, taking photos, telling stories, hosting events and selling the odd T-shirt online.
FULL DISCLOSURE: Melburn Roobaix (and FYXO) IS what it is today because of Melodie, my wife and partner in life.
Since 'The Boss' came on board, our product line grew to include lights, bidons, bags and apparel but above all - excellent customer service. It will come as no surprise that in a previous life, Melodie worked in retail, quickly rose through the ranks and won Rookie (Store Manager) of the Year across 500 stores in Canada and other management accolades.
We have developed and launched a line of awesome Merino staples, expanded our range of Ardent MTB trail shorts., and are excited to bring you the 'best bike party' of the year for the 16th time in June 2023.
Thanks for your support, no matter what point of the ride you've started to follow FYXO.
Andy & Melodie