A lot more facts and fugures from the Guardian. Yet - what can we draw from it when the Association of Cycle Traders brings it all into question by describing the boom as "hype" and "rubbish". You would think that they would know what is really going on.
I used to tinker with my car years ago, but it was not much fun for me. Very hard to get access to all the bits but too easy to graze your knuckles. And I stuffed things up liked over tightening panel bolts so that they snapped off. I changed the brake pads once, and then realised that you have no stopping power until you pump the extra hydraulic fluid needed to engage the pads, a bit scary.
Compared to that bicycles are a breeze. Standardised threads, easy to swap parts in and out, easy to understand how everything works. You can even monitor your repairs as you ride, like shifter tension! The more I think about it the bike seems a model of elegance and simplicity, and the car a dirty and complex machine that I really need a professional to repair for me.
Let's be thankful it's a bikes that they are choosing and not hotted up cars. At least they are choosing something healthy. I am not keen on this idea of a mid life crisis, it seems to be just an excuse to do something that you've always wanted to do, sometimes they are stupid things.
Just recently I was talking to an Afghani man, I asked him how old he was and he told me he was middle aged, he was in his early 30s, I guess if you did live in Afghanistan 30s would be mid life (though he was probably being very optimistic).
I think the mental health benefits of excercise are not given enough importance in this topic of 'middle age and cycling.' If cycling is becoming attractive for other reasons so be it - the end benefit is the same. I think the mental health benefits are especially crucial in this demographic who have got to a point in their working and family lives where pressure and stress is often at its highest.
I wish my parents had found a new love for something that made any one of them happier and healthier rather than a divorce.
Obligatory dig at the lycra and 'special shoes' - try riding a road bike in sneakers for a long time and see how your ankles feel:) Last I looked trainers were pretty damn expensive themselves and even top of the line cycling gear is probably going to come out cheaper than a fancy car!
Reply by Cate 17 hours ago
Now this is why I have little patience for journalists. They stomp around in cliches and tired old notions like a bunch of drunk cybermen and present them like something they've thought of something new and brilliant ...
Yeah they do, all of them, from Tony Jones, Laurie Oakes, Annabel Crabb, George Megalogenis, Ross Gittins, through to the junior reporter who writes the council reports for the local knock-and-drop.
Another thing about journalists is, they make sweeping generalisations. All of them.
Let's have a closer look at that article. Firstly, it’s not just the writer pulling stuff out of his arse – there are five different surveys or authors quoted in it ... some are mere marketing surveys, others are recognised health experts.
And then what about paragraphs like these:
‘‘While more than half - deluded fools - insist it [setting themselves a daunting physical challenge] is only about losing weight, 10 per cent admit that it is all down to ‘the midlife crisis’.’’
Hmmm .... is that a bit of irony there? Let’s read on:
‘‘It is worth mentioning, at this point, that many experts doubt the existence of a male midlife crisis at all (or at least, they recognise that something sometimes happens to males in midlife, but won’t call it a crisis).’’
‘‘Still, if the net result of this crisis-or-meltdown is that a generation of middle-aged men start living healthier lives, who cares?’’
Oh hang on ... is the writer really just mocking middle-aged blokes who take up exercise, or is he actually saying it’s a good thing?
Yogi missed his chance to bag out the SMH for the story, but in fact it’s a Guardian story, so if you want to have a go at the writer, here’s where to do it:
And you’ll be glad to see he’s already replied to similar complaints posted there: JonHenley
11 Aug 2010, 11:27AM
Staff To all you good people complaining that a) the male midlife crisis doesn't properly exist and/or that b) this piece is based entirely on PR/marketing puff: you are absolutely right. However, the article makes precisely those points. It wouldn't half be nice if some of you read beyond the headline and the first paragraph before letting rip.
It wouldn't half be nice if some of you read beyond the headline and the first paragraph before letting rip, said John Henley just prior to grabbing a couple of beers and sliding down the escape chute while yelling "F*$% you, motherf*$%ers, I'm outta here!"