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The new essential piece of equipment(18 posts)

The new essential piece of equipmentDjudd
Mar 1, 2002 5:12 PM
As I went over my list for the weekend rides I realized one of the most important pieces of equipment is the cell phone. Long rides are now safer and have almost no anxiety with this, the ultimate bailout accessory. Before the cell riding solo was always a balance between distance from home, possible pay phones on the route, and ingenuity. Some pieces are now out of this multi-sided equation due to the cell. Even a neanderthal retrogrouch (myself) can appreciate the freedom we now have. What do you guys think?
re: as long as it's for emergencies and bailouts...Akirasho
Mar 1, 2002 5:21 PM
... I don't have a problem with them... but folks who take them on rides so's to remain "connected" seem to be missing the point of the ride (I know, that's my personal opinion).

Human beings have been able to procreate and be a relatively successful species for eons before the invention of said... and contrary to many marketing ads, I think we could survive a few more eons without 'em... (and yes, I know the irony of my posting this on the internet...).

We abide.

Remain In Light.
re: as long as it's for emergencies and bailouts...KingMambo
Mar 1, 2002 6:31 PM
They also allw you to climb those extra few hills and dial the wifey and let her know you'll be a bit late to go shopping with her. My personal favorite!
re: as long as it's for emergencies and bailouts...Djudd
Mar 1, 2002 6:32 PM
I agree with the essence of your point that we would get along fine if they had not been invented.
As with any technology, something is lost and something is gained. It's up to the individual to decide if the gain outweighs the loss.
re: as long as it's for emergencies and bailouts...KingMambo
Mar 1, 2002 6:37 PM
Cell phones do not call people. People call people.
Cell phone allows me to rideWilier
Mar 1, 2002 9:20 PM
I don't think I'm missing the point of "the ride" by bringing a cell phone to stay connected. In fact - if it weren't for my cell phone - I would never have ridden at all this winter on weekdays. Due to daylight savings and the need to work between 8am and 5pm, if I want to ride - I'm doing it at night.

Lucky for me - I have a flexible work schedule so I can ride occasionally during my work hours. However, if somebody needs me, I pull off to the side of the road and answer the call. Yes - I't really irritating to pull off in mid-interval (happened today). But I'm just happy to ride. When the alternative is to sit at my desk all day - I'll choose to bring the phone and have to talk shop on my rides occasionally.

For those of you who are able to get away completely - congratulations!! Please just understand that not all of us have this luxury. For me - I just want to ride and this is what allows me to do it.

On another note - on long group rides someone should always have a cell phone. Anyone who wants to hunt for the payphone to call the ambulance after a major crash is just unprepared in my opinion. Technology allows us to be safer. If you want to "get away" then keep the thing off. This is what I do on weekends. But I'd advise you all to bring the thing for safety sake.

Thanks for listening.
Cell phone allows me to rideR-I-D-E
Mar 1, 2002 9:40 PM
Agreed. A cell phone is by no means a "must have" piece of equipement on a ride, but it is very much a great item to be able to take with you.

For those non-believers who don't agree, you can turn your phone off during a ride, and only turn it on in case of an emergency. If you don't want people calling while you are riding, fine...leave the phone off. But it is nice to have it when, or if, you ever need it. Sort of like hate paying for it, but when you need it, you are glad you have it.

I carry one now, and it has saved me big time. I crashed pretty hard into a barbed wire fence (yes, it was ugly) last summer, and my bike (and not to mention myself), was rendered unrideable. I was a good 10 miles from home, in the backroads, where very little traffic exists. Luckily, I had my phone, and a decent signal, and was able to call my wife to come and get me. If I was without the phone, that would have been a long, painful, walk home.

Technology is good, and should be embraced. Yes, some things are a bit over the top and definitely not NEEDED (take a Palm Pilot for example). I have no problem with anyone who wants to own a Palm, but most folks don't truly need them. But a cell phone is far from being an unnecessary item.

Mar 1, 2002 6:44 PM
Yeah, I never naively head off into the wilderness unprepared without my cell phone in case I need someone the come save me immediately. There is a huge increase in people heading off and making up for a lack of preparation with the cell phone and subsequently requiring rescue (just ask the Park Service). If they wouldn't have gone in ther first place without their electronic safety blanket should they even be there? Who needs to prepare these days when you can just blissfully head off and dial 911 if anything comes up? It's not much different than camping in your own backyard and then extolling the virutes of the great outdoors and living off the land.

How is it that anyone got anywhere and do anything risky without a cell phone before? I know Columbus must've had one - for safety. What do you do when you get someplace, like the edge of the earth, and there's no signal? Turn back?

Free means free. Safe means something else. How can you truely be free with an electronic pacifier?

I can't argue with the fact that for a solo woman or a bad accident that it can be a real life saver.
re: Sure ..."grzy" go for a ride...Djudd
Mar 1, 2002 7:09 PM
you have cabin fever my man...all your posts have been surly. Get a Nutty Buddy, a glass of gatorade and hit the road (cell phone optional)
Mar 1, 2002 7:31 PM
I think need that and a qualude. ;-)

Wait, doesn't Surly make a 'cross bike too?
Yeah...high schoolDjudd
Mar 1, 2002 8:55 PM
'ludes and gatorade...I'm in high school again (wait, am I showing my age?)
I agree, to a point.look271
Mar 3, 2002 2:58 PM
There are some failures/situations that you cannot plan for (frame breaks, taco a wheel,fork snaps, etc.)as well as the accident possibility that you mentioned. Additionally, I carry one for my wife's peace of mind. If it were completely up to me, I wouldn't carry one. I never leave it on. However, it eases my wife's mind knowing that if anything happens, I can get in touch with someone. In my mind, that makes it worth it.
I only use it on LONG solo rides and...RayBan
Mar 1, 2002 6:44 PM
Outside of the occasional long ride that I know will take me way out there(which isn't that often), the only time I rode with one on a regular basis is when my wife was expecting to deliver "any day now" . Got to admit with the small size of a cell phone nowadays it sure is an easy item to take with you.
I only take mine when my daughters in school...n.m.koala
Mar 1, 2002 7:24 PM
Mar 1, 2002 8:09 PM
NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE HERE SAYS. They are a result of technology and you don't need one. People get accustomed to having "things" and cannot imagine life without them.
The only thing you need is food, sleep and a place to take a dump. Everything else is a luxury. The bike included. People still function without cell phones and don't have total meltdowns. I don't own one nor feel a need for one especially on a bike ride. I agree it would be nice to have in an emergency if my car breaks down, but I think I can make it home without one if need be.
To each his own though, but when I see an obnoxious tool talking on a cell phone straddling his fancy bike, I know it is more about the equipment than the ride.
One of my favorite scenes in any movie ever (I saw it in the theatres when I was 9 years old before becoming a serious cyclist) is when Dave Stoller in Breaking Away is riding slowly down that road looking up at the trees. I empathize with his character at that moment as that is what a bike ride is suppose to be about.
There was no "need" to carry a cell phone then because they weren't accessible and if cell phone were still large and bulky I assure you that 99.9% of you would find that you really don't "need" them either. Like I said technology and not necessity dictates your perceived "need".
Thank you and I will now step down from my soap box.
re: The new essential piece of equipmentCliff Oates
Mar 1, 2002 7:57 PM
Last June, I went on a long ride where I knew there would be no cell service (Livermore and up the back side of Hamilton, for anyone from the SF area). I was with a group of friends, so I left my cell phone in my truck in Livermore. I crashed hard descending Hamilton and ended up as an overnight guest of Kaiser Hospital in South San Jose.

The phone in my room was restricted to local numbers and toll free numbers, but everyone I needed to contact lived 60 miles away from the hospital in another area code. The nurses did what they could to help, but they had other patients and their own jobs to tend to. I'm single and live alone, and I was deeply concerned for the welfare of my dog. She was pretty much screwed that night. If I had access to a fully functional phone, I might have been able to get a friend over to my place that evening to walk her and get her some food.

I take the phone with me on all my rides now because you just never know when you might need it.
Got one under protest, and I don't carry it on ridescory
Mar 1, 2002 8:07 PM
I got a phone because it seemed like a good idea for my wife and driving-age daughter, but I rarely use it and won't take it on rides. Part of the attraction of cycling for me is that people CAN'T reach me then--the freedom comes from the bike, not the phone. I've never been fearful or anxious on a road ride in 30+ years of cycling, and it's rare on the mountain bike (I live about a mile from the Toiyabe National Forest, three miles from Tahoe NF, and I often go for half-day solo mountain bike rides).
For what it's worth--which is next to nothing these days, I realize--I resent the hell out of it when I'm standing in some remote spot, having busted my butt to ride up there, and some guy wheels in next to me, punches the phone and says, "Hey, honey, guess where I am."
I won't take your callNoPhony
Mar 1, 2002 8:22 PM
A little story:

Once I called a friend who prefers to carry his phone everywhere and, I guess, doesn't have ordinary phone service at home, anyway, he answers my call while he's doing his training ride on the highway. I ask him, "Are you riding?" and he says, "Yeah, I'm on the Coast." I go, "You answer your phone while you're riding?" "Yeah", he says. Then I hear a truck horn and him go, "Oops, that was close, I almost got hit!"

After I hung up I thought how awful I'd feel if he were to wreck while he's answering my call or talking to me. But then again if he wants to leave it on he should answer it safely.

I bring mine once in a while for emergencies but it's left off so it doesn't distract me while I'm enjoying my ride.