Everyone sees the form of it, the color, but all we are thinking about is its function. Function, whether it be with clothe or with a bike, only pursues the user if you buy it and use the damn thing. Simplicity of function is sexy. The world is overwrought with complexity and the attempt to package communication and transportation in all manners of sleekness for the budget at hand. But a bicycle is great because you are simply putting one foot in front of the other.
A bicycle is an enhancer
No machine, nor product will ever surpass the beauty of the human innovation and all its tools of locomotion. A bicycle is an enhancer, it does not try to outperform the body, nor fight it, it accentuates it : Like a microphone blasts the voice through a different range of audio, the bike gives us more mileage for not much more effort. So if you are lucky enough to own one of these sleek machines, then you are aware on how it can and will affect your life. What follows is a breakdown of such changes :
The road is the land of competitive spaces
you will see suddenly how every car in a 10 meter vicinity wants to kill you. Not literally, but you, good sir, riding a bike, become nothing more than a pedestrian who has the nerve to be out in the middle of the street with a little contraption under your feet, and turn and do various maneuvers that a car does like park or speed up. The road is the land of competitive spaces : The larger things that take up more space cannot psychologically consider much smaller objects as equals. It’s like bumper cars, really that never changes no matter how old or wise we get ; we always want to shoo away the annoying little things that get in our way on our competitive quest to get from point A to point B.
Car drivers smell the air conditioning and polution
You will appreciate the air, the smells, and the odors you want to escape. Garbage, a bakery, car exhaust, paint, some delicious smelling spicy dinner escaping from a half-shuttered window. Plus a hundred more smells, and that it just in the first quarter of a kilometer. A bicyclist knows when a body of water is near, because you can smell it. All of them either excite, or make you fall off your bicycle in horror, there is no subtlety here. Car drivers smell the air conditioning and pollution which is like plastic mixed with stale air, or the sock they left on the floor. But the beauty and variety of sights and smells encountered on even a short bike ride is not something to take lightly. We blast our eyes and ears all days with music, computers, voices, lights but can we tell you how wonderful the bread smells at the corner bakery every morning? Or can we experience the woman with the amazing perfume who stops and smiles at us weekly as we pull up to the blue bike rack at the nearest metro station? I hope so. The senses are what life is about.
I feel like a marshmallow when I ride
Dress Accordingly. Have you ever seen a man wearing a smart suit riding a bike to work? Well, you will never forget it, because no one ever looks that good you sweat when you ride, you hurt.
I once spent a good 30 seconds debating whether or not I should chase down a man riding a bike with sunglasses, a beard, and slicked back hair to ask him how he looks so damn cool and effortless while gliding down the street. I feel like a marshmallow when I ride.
Well being experience in paris could be:
Aside from any body image issues I may encounter, just fit the purpose of the ride, if its solely for exercise and not a commute, wear whatever you would like. But there are lots of moving and sharp pieces on a bicycle, so please wear pants. Your legs are sexy, but not that not sexy. Protect yourself. Remember, just like motorcyclists cover up to protect their skin, you too are susceptible. So err on the side of coats and long sleeved attire. Emphasize pants and jeans containing 1 to 2% elastane. Elastane reduces tension in your legs. Last but not least, wear a helmet, there is no joke nor fashion statement that can re-compensate for the fact that you want to keep your head functional and pretty for another day. Safety always, especially when the cars you encounter just ADORE pulling out in front of you when you go 50 km/hr down a hill with bad brakes. After all is said and done, have fun. Barrel down that hill without a care in the world and the wind in your face.
Roland & Travis