Eagle-eyed readers will have immediately noticed something unusual about the picture above.

Yes, those are "cycling" socks but those are not (proper) cycling shoes. Of course, they can be used for cycling, and even occasionally are on my commuter bike with toe clips, but their primary purpose is for walking, not pedalling. 

Really insightful readers, (you know who you are), will also have noted that there is also no bicycle in the picture. So, save yourself the trouble of zooming in, looking for reflections, or forensically examining every pixel. Your impression is correct: no bicycle.

All of which may suggest the difficulty I face in completing my traditional christmas day blog/whinge, (which you have all been clamouring for... well, two of you loyal fans, anyway – thanks, the cheques are in the mail) about how few of you keen cyclists take advantage of the best cycling day of the year.

So I am not riding on the North Shore today. I am not riding anywhere, coz no bicycle here. Where is here, though? It's a place where, on an ordinary day, as far as I can judge, there are hundreds of riders passing a given point every hour. If you pick the right given point, of course.

LEFT: Here's a couple of riders heading away from the "right given point" who made the count.

This morning I went for a walk instead of a ride and decided to count the cyclists as I went. My standard measure of riders/km was not going to be any use without my bicycle/Garmin set-up, so I had to invent a new standard measure.

I settled on riders/minute as the benchmark index and an hour as the time-frame. Given the ordinary-day score, I was hoping to exceed the mark of one rider per minute which would be an improvement on the one-per-km I have (nearly) previously recorded on the North Shore (http://www.sydneycyclist.com/profiles/blogs/another-christmas-day-f... and  http://www.sydneycyclist.com/profiles/blogs/another-lonely-christmas-day-ride).

A mild temperature, overcast skies and a gentle zephyr offered pretty ideal conditions. Only the threat of rain may have been a slight deterrent, but it held off until mid-morning.

To say I was disappointed in my official measure of christmas day cycling-participation in this new environment would be an understatement. I managed to spot only 45 different people riding in the observed hour despite much bicycle-friendly infrastructure and near-deserted roads. Less than the benchmark one/minute! And, I almost forgot to mention, there were at least two acceptable caffeine-purveying establishments, open and trading, in the close vicinity. This strongly suggests to me that the tendency for cyclists to waste the best cycling day of the year is widespread in this country. 

I'll point out that there were quite a few bicycles parked in numerous locations, perhaps more than were moving, including this well set-up Surly LHT, (right), but I  can't really count them as active participants in christmas-day-cycling unless I see them in use and moving.

What is wrong with people in Australia?!?!

OK, whinge out of the way, where is it I am whinging about? (Oh, BTW, some of you are disqualified. You know who you are.)

Views: 382

Comment by baa baa on December 25, 2016 at 2:06pm

That terrazzo makes it easy, so Christchurch, somewhere in Changi Singapore or Civic in Canberra.


Comment by Neil Alexander on December 25, 2016 at 5:55pm

Not. Even. Close. Sheepy-one. (Surprised you didn't suggest TC. But, there are no traffic lights there, I guess.)

I did strongly imply, because it is true, that it is in Australia.

Comment by Dabba on December 25, 2016 at 7:23pm

Before the street sign became blurry, it looked like Greenway (?) Street. 

Comment by Bill Parker on December 25, 2016 at 8:12pm
And the alleged socked legs in the shoes looks badly photoshopped
Comment by Neil Alexander on December 25, 2016 at 9:03pm

Sorry to rain on your conspiracy theory, Bill, but that's an artefact of the original smart-phone image and the dodgy filter I used on the pic. For better or worse, those really are my legs/socks/shoes.

Comment by Neil Alexander on December 26, 2016 at 9:40am

The day after christmas day and the cyclists are out in (more) force... I counted 45 go past in only 12 minutes before I thought of something more interesting to do.

Hmmm, after eight years of doing this blog, it is starting to dawn on me that people may have something distracting them from cycling on christmas day. Heresy! In another eight years I hope to have figured out what it is.

In the meantime, I'll admit I have been really miserly with my clues for this WITWIMB, though if any of you were real detectives you could work it out, or at least have a better guess than bb's. My problem is that all my other photos are deadset giveaways.

I mean, if I posted this pic, you'd know in five seconds, or 10 at the most if you needed to google.

Comment by PeterT on December 26, 2016 at 10:35am

Port Macquarie springs to mind.

Comment by Neil Alexander on December 26, 2016 at 10:56am

SRSLY? That may say rather too much about your mind, I fear. ;-)

Comment by Dabba on December 26, 2016 at 11:19am

Southbank Brisvegas.

Comment by Neil Alexander on December 26, 2016 at 11:27am

Very good, Dabba. What gave it away as South Bank? (I suppose The Arbour in the background.)

Good try on the street sign, BTW. I knew that would be a giveaway, too, if I left it readable. It says Glenelg St and it's at the intersection with Grey St.


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