Friday, October 14, 2005

The Helmet Papers: Page One

As I indicated on yesterdays post, I was planning on responding to the anti-helmet posistion that a local cycling personality expouses. There is enough material to cover here, that I thought that it would be better to focus on smaller parts of the transcript, instead of trying to cover the entire piece in one sitting.

The comments recieved from yesterdays post probably reflect the majority opinion out there. However; I think it's wise to see that there are people out there actively trying to convince others that helmets are goofy, or a bad idea altogether.

Backround: This individual was hired for a time as the local papers "cycling expert". He has posted, written, and spoken on numerous occaisions on his anti-helmet posistions. This particular example, that I present, is representative of his current philosophy on the matter. This example was posted on a tandem cycling internet forum. His text is in italics, while my commentary is in standard font. Got it? Okay, let's dig in, shall we?

"My wife and I wear helmets when we go on organized bike rides, mainly to keep the "helmet nazis" off our backs.

I haven't hit my head in a bike crash since 1973- about 80,000 miles ago. and before I'd ever seen a bicycle helmet- and I didn't even have a headache after that one. My wife has never hit her head in a crash. Every time we've put on helmets, it has been a waste of time, effort and comfort."

These are the opening comments to his post. Obviously, anyone can say with clarity, ( at least some people can) what history they have with any chosen activity that they engage in. However; one cannot predict the future! His claim of the amount of miles that he has ridden without biffing his head only amplifies the fact that his probability of crashing is higher. Regardless, the event of an accident, by the very nature of it's name, implies that we do not plan on having an accident. I'm sure, given the choice, this individual, or any of us, would not want an accident to occur. Wearing a helmet is therefore wise, because it can protect you in the event of an accident. An event which is impossible to predict, no matter how many miles you may, or may not have ridden. If it were possible to predict calamities, I wouldn't even bother getting on my bike "the day of an accident", much less wear my helmet that day. Therefore; saying that wearing your helmet is "a waste of time, effort, and comfort" is rediculus. At any rate, I don't see how popping my helmet on wastes time, ( it only takes five seconds to do it) nor effort, (it's sooo simple to put on, a child can do it) or comfort. ( modern helmets being so light, I forget I have mine on!)

Okay! Enough for today. I think this is going to be interesting. I invite any comments you may have, and I would like to compile them. I may end up sending all this along to this individual, after I complete this series.

Plan B is in effect for Trans Iowa recon! (* %*& @!) I will possibly post "Page Two" this evening, as I won't be able to get out of town until very early Saturday morning now, at the earliest.

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