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THE TIME IS ALWAYS NOW collaborated with local fixed gear imprint Cartel Bikes to tell the story of passion and community and one man's journey through it all. Local rider Slim Tikini Pickens breaks it down for us below.

Before I even got wind about what Mash was doing in San Fran with their piste bikes, I had my eyes on Tokyo.

"What T19 was doing with their shop Carnival, but more specifically the videos they were uploading to the Kennicam YouTube channel. I got to thinking just how free I would feel if I was riding fixed gear through the city; not just any old city but Tokyo.

What kind of liberties would I have to take to free myself enough to ride like those guys?"

"This was back in 2005, and it took me another six years before I could begin answering those questions. My first bike was a gift in the form of a Panasonic NJS frame. We rode alone and mostly at night, and I ended up destroying the bike in an accident back in the summer of 2014 - which was when a friend reached out to me about Cartel Bikes.

The timing was perfect. I was given a particularly unique 'Avenue Lo' that was laced with a bunch of Carbon fiber parts courtesy of Diner. This was the genesis of the bike life I live today."

"All these years of riding have given me a somewhat unique perspective and understanding of Tokyo. I can't ride the train in comfort anymore, so my life in Tokyo has been reduced to either a ride on my bike or ride in a taxi.

It's only now that I am beginning to reach out to the riders I've known since my days back in London, and to all the new people I've met during my time at Cartel Bikes."

" gave us incredible visuals that made me once again fall in love with the idea of freedom. The freedom we are afforded by living in Tokyo and how through our Cartel we take that idea of freedom and leave it up to each individual to see how far they will take it."


A Film

Director - Chace Fedor
Director of Photography - Kateb Habib
Still Photography - Kateb Habib
Producer - Asako Tomotani
Editorial Design - Julie Guillot