|From Dale Jr's Twitter Feed- Guess who shamed him for his short socks?|
Things got more fun as I got older when I picked up a friend's ten speed bicycle for a bit as he couldn't find anywhere to store it while he was in transition between homes in two different states. During that time I rode his bike along trails and roads I hadn't been on. I often would ride down to hang out at an ice cream stand in a small town, eat my confection, then I would turn around and ride back home. I never heard a negative word about how I was doing all of this. Well, that is, until I started cycling with "serious road cyclists".
Now, I could blame this on "roadies", but that would be too simple. It really isn't roadies, or any other sub-culture of cycling, it is really just endemic to how males in cycling are, for the most part. I cannot speak for the females in cycling, but I do know all about the "rules" of "Cycle Club". Boy do I.....
Those guys I first started riding with on the local training loop weren't friendly. They weren't about teaching you anything, and they figured if you couldn't hang, well then, too bad. Heaven forbid that you wore something wrong, didn't "pull through", or took a flyer when it wasn't appropriate. There was a semi-secret language and all these unspoken, untaught "rules" which made riding with these jerks no fun at all.
|Lance doesn't like your socks, Dale Jr. (Image courtesy of Bike Portland)|
Ironically, Dale Earnhardt Jr just got into road cycling. He has been pretty open about the process on his social media. He says he feels odd wearing Spandex/Lycra outfits. He says he thinks the equipment "necessary" for road riding is expensive, and he revealed that he was shamed for wearing too short socks by none other than Lance Armstrong. He detailed how his first few rides have gone- he got thrown the bird by a motorist and had a flat tire from hitting a rumble strip due to an unannounced sudden move by a seasoned cyclist he was with. That's pretty encouraging stuff right there. Yep! Makes you want to jump right in and follow along, it does.
Sounds like the rules of "Cycle Club" are still in full effect. Too bad. No wonder folks get turned off by cyclists, or from trying cycling if they get into this subset of dudes that seem to have sucked all the fun out of riding a bicycle.