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Are Roadies Too Uptight?(22 posts)

Are Roadies Too Uptight?Slipstream
Mar 1, 2002 10:38 AM
The board is populated with comments concerned with:
- What kind of bike they ride (e.g., Moto vs Colnago; too expensive vs cheap; ti vs carbon vs aluminum vs steel; new vs old)
- It is set up correctly (is the seat too high)
- Appropriate attire (fashion police may catch them)
- Being a Fred or a Masher or a whatever...

My questions are:
- Does it really matter? (Let's celebrate the experience)
- Why are YOU/WE/I so critical when we come upon another rider?
- Are we so concerned about being judged by a critical eye that we are fearful of doing something stupid or look like we haven't earned or stripes?
- Why do we feel it is necessary that someone prove their mettle before we accept them for their quirks or differences?

I submit that few people are this critical -- but everyone seems to be concerned about it.

What are your thoughts? What can/should we do to make people less uptight about what they ride, how they ride and how they dress?

What have been your experiences (positive/negative)? How would you improve the road community?
We live in an uptight, image conscious society...Cima Coppi
Mar 1, 2002 11:05 AM
It is a shame that the observations you have presented are very true for cyclists, skiers, drivers, and on and on and on. I honestly find myself thinking (not saying) about what others are riding on, wearing, etc, trying very hard not to make judgements about other cyclists. I can only wonder what others think of me.

In the end, we are all involved in a wonderful sport, activity, whatever you want to call it. The members of this board should encourage each other to just ride for whatever enjoyment each of has to benefit from.

It sorta depends on your point of referenceJBurke
Mar 1, 2002 11:05 AM
Usually the comparison is to MTB guys, and while I think the perception is that roadies are more uptight, in reality I'm not sure they're any worse than mountain guys.

The obvious thing is the whole fashion deal. You road guys are a bit silly at times (men should not wear pink Lycra, period), but with MTB guys being ANTI-fashion is just as big a deal and, if you've ever used them, you'd know that baggy shorts and cotton anything, no matter how cool it looks, are miserable.

MTB guys are also just as big bike snobs as roadies, with heaps of praise (and $$$) going to small builders despite the fact that their lack of budget, engineering and research often makes the dreaded Asian bikes not only a better deal, but a better product. (For the record, though, I've got a Dean ti that rocks.)

I'll put it this way -- I do all of my road rides on either a beat-to-hell, 15-year-old, pre-index Cannondale with MTB pedals or my mountain bike with road slicks, and no one's ever given me any crap.

So while SOME roadies are pricks, I've found most to be cool, and certainly no worse than the increasingly EXTREEEEEME! MTB dorks I'm running into.
re: Are Roadies Too Uptight?Djudd
Mar 1, 2002 11:16 AM
In every field of endeavor there are those that are more concerned with appearance than actual participation. Be it cars, soccer, writing, painting whatever, there will always be those that are fascinated with the look of a thing and will ridicule those that don't have what they deem to be the proper look. I honestly don't think cycling has anymore of these folk than other endeavors. Granted, these people in any instance are obnoxious and nerve-wracking. If someone wants to wear a full pro-kit that's there business and if the next guy wants to wear the the most generic jersey "Performance" has on sale that week I don't care just take your pull and be smart on the road.
For the most part my experiences with riders have been positive. Some of my best experiences have been with riders or groups that I met on the road and fell into a working formation with, for however many miles are paths converged. If a person wants to judge and criticize on the strength of appearance that's their problem and, for the most part, you can be sure there will be no changing them.
I'll bet most of us have seen the old guy on the 60's vintage bike, black socks and leather hairnet, turning beautiful circles with a suppleness that only years of consistent riding can bring. Let them laugh I will ride with the old guy any day.
Mar 1, 2002 11:18 AM
So now that you've raised "new" issues (which aren't really any different from what's already being discussed) why don't you try taking a stand on one of your propsed issues without falling into one of the sterotypes that you criticize. That is try and make a statement and say anything that is not rhetorical and not have someone disagree with you. If you just want to be philosophical and contemplate your navel all day that's fine, but you won't really find anyone that will agree or disagree with you - it's your navel. People are free to discuss just about anything bike related here - why do you propose that some things should be talked about and not others? If you don't care for a topic just keep moving. If you don't like the board then find another one. If you want us to all think like you then dream on.

There really is no "right" or "wrong" on many issues - it's all a matter of preference. In the end everyone can be too uptight about something, but at the same time they can be indifferent and uncaring about other things. Is one really better than the other?
Let's Fan The Flames...Slipstream
Mar 1, 2002 11:32 AM
I thought I did take a stand and that is we should celebrate our individuality without fear of recrimination from others regardless of what we ride, how we look or how skilled we are.

In addition, we should be more open to others differences without being critical.

As I understand your response, I should go to another board because issues I have raised are redundant. Excuse me for breathing too. Your response is exactly what I am talking about: you don't like it so your immediate response it to be critical.

That is too say, there is no reason to start flaming someone because they may strike a wrong chord somewhere...take a minute and think about what is written, read others responses and then offer a thoughtful reply. Or, maybe YOU should entertain the thought of going to another board.
Mar 1, 2002 2:56 PM
Sounds like you're getting judgmental there....remember I'm an indvidual that must be celebrated for being the soul rider that I am an my passion for keeping it real. I need love, kindness and understanding to blossom into the delicate flower that I am. I'm a fat person trapped in a skinny person's body.

It's OK to let your freak flag fly, just don't be surprised or offended when people call you a freak. You're probaly the type to wear a nose ring through your septum and then pretend to be all offended when people stare at it b/c it looks strange and we can't help and wonder how you manage to pick your nose.

My criticism is this silly myopic view of yours that "I'm OK, you're OK, but we can't talk about the why." In case you haven't noticed we ARE celbrating our individuality - you just want us to use Miss Manners approved PC kid gloves. I guess I'm critical of your foolishness and niavety.

Try this on for size. I think that the mid-70's Schwinn Le Tour is the best damn bike ever made in the history of the world, period. If you even think about bringing up the subject of weight, performance, styling you're just one of those critical close minded SOB roadies that can't celebrate diversity and individuality. While we're at it - Ted Bundy for president! Hey, why not? Wait, I don't want to know what you think - it might be critical.

In your world there is no good , better, or best or crap.

Yup, this should be a BB where people can post topics, but no one can reply.
And A 5 BIC Award To YouSlipstream
Mar 1, 2002 5:03 PM

Who is labeling whom? freak/myopic/nose ring/Miss Manners/"niavety (sic)"/foolishness/

...and don't forget, you asked for my opinion, so don't get aplopectic when someone has one that may be different from yours.

Having never ridden a Schwinn Le Tour, I wouldn't know. However, I do know that there is a pretty darn good bike maker in Wisconsin that may have had a hand in it.
Sorry, I meant apoplectic...Slipstream
Mar 1, 2002 5:56 PM
Mar 1, 2002 2:01 PM
One need not look much past his navel to know that 'airing' this issue is presumptuous and also little arrogant in itself. Yeah, and snobby too! (Am I allowed to say that?)
Mar 1, 2002 2:27 PM
It must be nice not to have any flaws, how do you do it?
Mar 1, 2002 7:58 PM
It's not nice; I get a lot of crap for it.
Mar 1, 2002 11:20 AM
Is the greatest fashion crime I can think of. FOR GOD SAKE DON'T DO IT!
Everyone is too uptighthms
Mar 1, 2002 11:54 AM
Based on my conversations with the twentysomethings at the office and my almost-teenaged daughters (10 and 12), I think that everyone, except for a few middle-aged guys like me, is too uptight about matters of style and appearance. It seems like every nuauce is analyzed and, if you are outside of the fashion du jour, you are not cool. Roadies only reflect the society in which they live.
Maturity is realizing that how you look isn't the central issuecory
Mar 1, 2002 12:04 PM
Actually that's not an accurate quote, but it's the closest I could fit into the subject box. Can't remember who said it, but it was something like, "At some point, perhaps around age 35, you realize that how you look is not the most important issue. When that day comes, you will have achieved maturity." From there you make a gradual slide to the day, perhaps around age 75, when you no longer bother to zip your fly...
As for the uptightness of roadies, though, I see it all the time and hate it, but it's not as bad as skiing. Couple of years ago in the Tour de Peninsula near San Francisco, I rode with two friends on their first group ride, and their first ride of more than 10 or 12 miles. One had a flat in a fast part of the course, and as he wobbled to a stop, a couple of Serious Cyclists in superhero jerseys whipped by and shouted something.
"Sorry," I told him. "There are more @ssholes in cycling than in any other sport."
A guy riding by heard me, and without a blink said, "What, you've never been skiing?"
No. They're just about right, and the rest are overtightened.128
Mar 1, 2002 12:05 PM
uptight - no / eccentric and particular - maybe & yesSpirito di Finocchio
Mar 1, 2002 12:17 PM
I personally like things cheap and honest or expensive and frivolous - the middle stuff i just find boring and never seems like much thought was involved.

with regards to riding - i wouldnt chide or ridicule anybody on two wheels. i respect all forms, shapes, style and ability as long as they are out there and rolling along. i look at all cyclists as family.

i even have bearded recumbent riding friends (

All Cyclists Are Family...Slipstream
Mar 1, 2002 12:46 PM
Some thing to keep in mind--maybe we should make a t-shirt titled "All Cyclists ARE Family," or, for those cynics, we should just all hold hands and sing kumbayaa...

Some great ideas here for everyone to keep in mind:

Spiroto di Finocchio, "All cyclists are family."

Cima Coppi: "In the end, we are all involved in a wonderful sport, activity, whatever you want to call it. The members of this board should encourage each other to just ride for whatever enjoyment each of has to benefit from."

Djudd: "I'll bet most of us have seen the old guy on the 60's vintage bike, black socks and leather hairnet, turning beautiful circles with a suppleness that only years of consistent riding can bring. Let them laugh I will ride with the old guy any day."

Cory: "How you look isn't the central issue."

Grzy: "Just go contemplate your navel all day."

Slipstream: "We need to keep a sense of humor and not take ourselves too seriously."
perhaps we should drone in monty python style...Spirito di Finocchio
Mar 1, 2002 1:06 PM

and regarding the t-shirts; can you imagine what sort of debarcle that will be deciding on style and color (colour)? that would start a flame to last for weeks unless Gregg persuaded wrench science or voler to offer 74,639 diffeents variations of the same frigging t-shirt to satisfy our need to be uniquely similar and in common.

dangerous territory slipstream!
Sounds like a planSlipstream
Mar 1, 2002 1:12 PM
and maybe we can start a dot com and get some venture capital as well, sell out and retire so we can go riding.

I like it!!!
you suggesting just me & you or all of us.....Spirito di Finocchio
Mar 1, 2002 1:28 PM
i only say this as im fickle and whimsical and not a good long term

but if you mean all of us im ready to try as long as Grzy is our leader. of course cherry1 and Rusty Mcnasty are not invited... apart from that all "all cyclists are family" is my motto. ive always wondered what Jtolleson actually looks like.

A lot of Roadies are ignorant!Brit
Mar 1, 2002 1:15 PM
I am a roadie and a mountain biker. I have riden a mtb with slicks for a couple of years and been mostly ignored by roadies. I hauled my overweight bike around my cycle routes and could stomp all over the vast majority of my roadie 'friends'. Whats up with that? A bike is a bike what ever shape or form it takes and we are all out to enjoy the freedom of being on two wheels.

Now I have an excellent road bike. Out on my regular stomping ground I find roadies letting on to me now. Should I ignore them? NO, I let on to all cyclists whatever they are sat on.

My $0.02