Riding Into Trouble

Let’s give a huge yay for our Tour De France champion, Cadel Evans! What a magnificent athlete, a truly amazing sportsman, and yes, dare I say, a national treasure.

Evans has proved himself a fabulous role model for our children with his sheer grit and determination, proving that along with passion, a hefty whack of discipline, courage and focus is required to be the very best. Lifestyle has to be sacrificed, fame and attention ignored and responsibility to those who support you paramount.

There’ll be no headbutting comps in ifles pubsnf for him, nor, I suspect, will he be caught urinating in victory against L`Arc De Triomphe, or allowing his private parts to be admired by a frisky French poodle. None of this for our Cadel.

Sadly however, there is one downside to his triumph. His success will give the green light to more lycra loonies to hop on their bikes and clog up our roads, reinforced with  attitude that cyclists command, that pedal power predominates, that fluro’s the force.

Sydney’s Lord Mayor Clover Moore has already jumped on the bandwagon, seeking justification for her $76 million bike lane quest to cripple our city. She’s so excited she wants to offer Evans the keys to our city, hoping his victory will encourage Australians ”of all ages to take up cycling as a healthy recreational pursuit and a sustainable form of transport”. Here’s where we should point out that Evans was born in Katherine, in the Northern Territory, growing up later in Upper Corindi and Armidale. All fairly quiet little joints where peak hour is measured by the wait at the CBD’s single traffic light. Lots of room to cycle though… get my drift? How about tossing our Cadel the keys to those little whistlestops instead Clover, and while you’re at it, invite all his cycling mates to join him.

Now, before all the lycra louts start hyperventilating and giving me the finger, I agree there should be more areas to cycle. But our roads are designed for cars, and like it or not, they make up the majority of our transport system.

That of course won’t wash with the bicycle brigade of glossy little bottoms and busy fluro shirts. What is it with all the sponsorship clutter on their jerseys anyway? Are they being sponsored to annoy us? Are they competing in a championship between their latte stops and three-abreast chit chats? And why do cyclists all seem to have sharp, pointy faces? Is it due to their complete lack of body fat? Do pointy heads, like red cars, go faster?

On my way to work the other morning I was stuck behind two cyclists cheerfully taking up the left lane. There they were, their bright yellow bums bobbing up and down in unison, chatting away happily, while I crawled crankily behind unable to pass because of the peak hour traffic whizzing by in the middle lane. Naturally, I missed the green light, no real biggie, I breathed slowly. But hey! It was obviously no biggie for them either because they sailed right through that red light and away down the hill.

That’s why motorists get cross with cyclists, that and their exaggerated air of entitlement.They know our frustration is borne more out of the fear of hurting them than hating them, they know without any identification they have ifcarte blanchenf to do as they like on our roads. And they take advantage of that.

Okay, so maybe not all of them. I do have a lovely friend who cycles everywhere. But she shares the road with motorists, respects the rules, causes little inconvenience and doesn’t swan around in logo-laden jerseys pretending she’s competing in the Tour De France every weekend. Strangely enough though, she does have a very pointy head.

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