I am arguing on my latest blog post that, now Cadel's victory dancing in our eyes, we are in a good place to re-imagine our whole  bike culture.

 

We know, as vividly as we ever will, what the best of sports cycling looks like. But what about the poor cousin, utility cycling,  so much less glamorous and exciting, how does that  look?

 

As they swung around the Champs Elysees again and again,  I  thought how strange it is that certain other two wheelers, bikes which are  just as important in the scheme of things one could argue, don't rate  a mention , even as museums and public gardens get the nod from the savvy commentators

 

I'm talking about the  Velibs, the 250,000 public bikes  on the streets of that same city,  never thought of as a cutaway as round and round we go.  This  made me realize that utility riding is totally under the shadow of sports cycling and that  for the health of both  but especially the latter, they need to be peeled apart.

 

That is my blog topic. See if you agree.

http://www.situp-cycle.com/2011/07/26/peeling-them-apart/

 

Sorry,  I can't credit the charming velib photo

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Personally, for me the separation is 100%. For the past few weeks I've had to deal with people at my work (where I am "the cyclist") asking me about Cadel and the Tour, and they look a bit confused when I say that I'm not interested in it and don't know anything about it.

And I can't see Cadel's win doing anything for utility cycling - it may even be bad for it by reinforcing the common notion in our society that bikes = sport. Unless that notion is broken cyclign will never become a mainstream form of transport.

I can see you're trying to piggyback on Cadel's win to try and get people to think about utility cycling. I think the photos you've chosen make your point well and I hope it works, but you seem to be connecting Cadel's win with your theme of utility cycling only to then argue that there shouldn't be a connection. It's a little incoherent IMO.

For the past few weeks I've had to deal with people at my work (where I am "the cyclist") asking me about Cadel and the Tour

 

Hehe. Me too. My level of interest is undoubtedly higher than yours - I'll watch/read the highlights maybe if there is nothing else to do/on TV, but certainly will not stay up to watch it live. Took around a week for my boss to stop coming around every am with "did you see...." "nope."

 

I can't see Cadel's win doing anything for utility cycling

 

It depends on how you define utility cycling. I can see a few people taking up cycling as a sport and then, perhaps, riding to work. However, I do not see the same people buying situps, ebikes, and/or cargo cycles.

 

It's a little incoherent IMO.

 

+1

"I actually get a bit frustrated with the notion that sporty cycling ruins transport cycling for everyone else."

I didn't say that, and don't think it. Sporty cycling is fine - my only negative about it is that it has crowded out utility cycling in the public imagination. That's not the fault of sports cyclists, and I have no problem either with their sport or with them promoting it as loudly as they want.

Thanks for finding the right words for me. You say it perfectly.
"Sporty cycling is fine - my only negative about it is that it has crowded out utility cycling in the public imagination. "

I  thought how strange it is that certain other two wheelers, bikes which are  just as important in the scheme of things one could argue, don't rate  a mention

 

You didn't watch the entire three weeks of coverage I assume? When the commentators spoke of the bike schemes in Paris, London and elsewhere around the world? Or how bikes were being distributed in Africa to help those get much needed transport. These things were not just mentioned once but more than once by not only the commentators that we got here on live to air in Australia but also those going to other nations (available to us via the internet).

 

Agree with Kathy and Kylie, sick of the hate.

So long as we all agree to "hate-on" recumbent & Moulton riders...... :-P

 

Or at least not invite them to parties....

+1 and Amen

 

KathyM wrote

"I don't see why cyclists or bike riders (whatever) would want to create a them and us WITHIN the same space .... I'm tired of the negativity towards other bike lovers."

 

"And don't get me started on the Copenhagenize, Cycle Chic stuff either....those people can be just as good at being haters of everyone else who aren't like them in a bid to turn Australia into Denmark overnight. Spare me the platitudes."

 

Some might say those two statements appear to be at odds with each other.

 

Indeed, Michael. I am not beikn a hater. I'm trying to be constructive. Trying to open up more space by highlighting a way of riding which I sense has wide appeal to the non rider.
Before getting angry, I'd appreciate it if people could look at my blog post, at the juxtaposing of photos I use to make my case.

Trying to open up more space by highlighting a way of riding which I sense has wide appeal to the non rider.

 

So appealing that they have taken up cycling?

Where you see people blogging about the most shallow things; fashion and clothes, I see the most successful bicycle advocacy in history - a marketing campaign that converts non-cyclists into cyclists in large numbers.

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