Sunday, November 20, 2011

A response to "Bloody, sweaty cyclists"

The purpose of Nick Ryan's article in Adelaide Now is devised expressly to bait cyclists into a foaming rage.

Maybe what Nick Ryan looks like

I am a cyclist and here I am foaming with rage. RRRAAAHHHH!!

So, here is Nick's article with a few of my own annotations in italics:

We live in a place well accustomed to plagues of all kinds.

Yes we do.

Mice. Locusts. Crows fans.

People who hate cyclists. Traffic. Energy water companies.
(And for non-Australian readers, "Crows fans" refers to supporters of the Adelaide Football Club, another group Nick doesn't like for some reason)

They bring devastation and disgust and require drastic measures to get rid of them.

But there's one plague that shows no sign of abating, no sign of subsiding so we can return to our normal lives.

Here we go...

Cyclists. Bloody cyclists.


Great sweaty swarms of them, clogging up our roads and devastating our reserves of croissants and cafe lattes.

I just don't get it.

Yeah, well I don't get you.

I'll admit I'm more Louis Armstrong than Lance, more Tim Evans than Cadel and the last bike I rode had Spokey Dokes on the wheels.

I'm more Meg Ryan than Nick. Maybe you (Nick Ryan that is, not you, dear reader) should take a leaf out of her book. I am of course referring to her brilliant role in "City of Angels" when she rides a bicycle (into a truck of logs and dies).

It would take every small child in an Indonesian village an entire month to make enough lycra to fit me and when they did the result would look a lot like a walrus bound in Glad-wrap.

Great simile. Well done.

This isn't just the wheezy rantings of some bloke secretly jealous of someone else's enthusiasm for exercise.

The thought never entered my mind.

Nor is it the barely muted road rage of a resident of the Adelaide Hills who has to spend what seems like half his weekend behind the wheel of a car stuck in second gear with half a dozen shiny, sweaty arses filling the view through his windscreen.

Horses for courses Nick. Some people love that shit.

It's genuine befuddlement that people actually do this for fun.

What would a wheezy walrus know about what people do for fun? I don't know why you lie around all day on rocks and murder cute little penguins but I don't whinge and moan about it.

I get that for some it's a sporting pursuit at an elite level. I'm all for that.

I'll even cheer for you at the Olympics, but I might find it hard to muster similar enthusiasm if it's just the Commonwealth Games.

I agree, the Commonwealth Games are crap.

But it's the hordes of seemingly normal, everyday blokes who appear sane 90 per cent of the time but lose every scrap of reason once they're within 50 feet of a bike seat.

These are the blokes having heart attacks at the top of Norton Summit Rd - something like a dozen of them in the past year I've been told - and I can't help wondering how easily an ambulance can get to someone's aid when they're having to find a way past the other hundred or so potential cardiac cases riding four wide along the road.

On a serious note, the implication here seems to be that cycling causes heart attacks. Research has shown that this is not the case. People also have heart attacks while sleeping and walking on the beach. 
On a less serious note, it should be noted that emergency services vehicles are exempt from rule 3.1.14 of the Cyclists' Manifesto ("Cyclists must hinder the passing of motorised vehicles"). So that's how Ambulances get to someone's aid, Nick. Next time, do some research before you go wondering stupid shit like that.

I lay much of the blame for this fad masquerading as fitness at the way cycling so readily and easily lays back and opens itself up to fetishism.

Poor fetishism. Always the scapegoat. Global warming, fetishism. Libya, fetishism. Fetishism, fetishism. 

Give me all the technical reasons you like for why you need to shave your legs but I'm still going to suspect you just get off on it.

Actually, you're more or less right about that one.

And explain for me what other sporting pursuit requires you to wear an outfit that not only tells us all whether you dress to the left or the right but gives us the additional and useless tidbit that you get your coffee at Cibo.

I can't. There are none.

If you thought golfers could get tedious talking about the loft of their drivers or flex in their shafts then you've never been subjected to cyclist going on about gearing ratios.

...or wheezy walruses whining woefully. And I think you forgot the indefinite article in there Nicky.

Don't get me started on those silly bloody shoes.


You know a bunch of cyclists are about to descend on your favourite cafe because you hear them clacking towards you like a bunch of wombats on plastic stilts.

You started anyway. And another great simile; I can't help but feel you're channeling Alf from "Home and Away".

It all seems like a lot of effort to go to just to sit around and have coffee with your mates.

I think I'll leave you freaks to it and go and catch a taxi to the pub.

You do that, Nick, you flamin' galah!

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