So I've been riding fixie for about a month now...
About 1am Wednesday morning I was flying down a nearby, slightly downhill, street at approx 30-35mph with no brakes. A car pulled up to the light about 500 ft ahead of me and it looked as though the light would change and we would be in the intersection at about the same time (i.e. me slam into the side of this nice Lexus). I tried slowing down the pedaling but eventually had to start skidding. I slid for about 200 feet before the car rolled safely away. I go home without any problems.
So today I finally got around to putting a front brake on. I suddenly feel much safer! (go figure!)
And I can stop in a much shorter distance! (go figure again!)
I also feel like a total dumbarse for not having a brake on since day one. I really didn't use it today (about 20 miles of biking) but it's there, and it makes me feel safe. I can also bomb excellent hills without getting the **** scared out of me.
Maybe one day it will come off. You know, for that Zen thing....
I just wanted to share this experience with you guys and all of the other obvious noobs. If you don't know what you're doing (and believe me, you don't), get a brake. You don't have to use it, and probably wont, but it's still there.