Fat Lad's 1st biking topic:
I posted last Friday that Al, the Fat Lad from Leeds, wants to offer us erstwhile bike bloggers a weekly topic to write about during this long winter of our discontent. This Wednesday I received the first liberal application of his cattle prod:
Solo rides - roll out with your buddies or destroy those miles alone...It's often said that you have to go along to get along in this world. But this doesn't often apply to the velotariat. First, we certainly don't go along with kar kultur. Whether we're motivated by environmental concerns or we're just cheap we certainly don't get along with road-rage cagers who don't go along with our Share the Road ethos. Second, have you ever been to a critical mass meeting? It's kinda like the old Jewish joke: If you have 3 bikers in a room, you'll get 5 different opinions. Bikers naturally tend to be a solo crowd.
That being said, we do tend to bunch up a lot on the 1st Friday of every month. Then there are the bike clubs ... 1ooos of 'em. Sam Walker, a contributor to the now deceased Cycling Today, reflects on their inherent buddyness as
[a] throwback to early hunter-gatherer groups. Enthusiasts band together for safety and companionship, not to mention discounts, insurance, and a newsletter.Still though, I believe velotarians are essentially soloists. Just behind our We Are Traffic enthusiasms is the niggling realization that nobody, whether cagers or bikers, really likes traffic. Be honest, when you commute, what's more enjoyable: the open road or the sharing it with dozens of other Lycra louts, fixie pricks, and stoplight cheaters?