The MC Guide to Cycling and not being a Complete Dick


Remember that article last week that suggested immigration policy and border control shouldn’t be based on nationality or religion but personality defects?

Well, we left out one very important and irritating category of people—snowflake cyclists. Now, we’re not talking all cyclists. This fat mess enjoys a bike ride as much as the next metabolism-challenged chunker, and has been known to ride the streets. But ultimately I decided if I was to be going toe-to-toe with FaceTiming teen models on the mean streets of Sydney I’d prefer to at least be on a level playing field. Call me crazy, but sometimes surviving the commute trumps entitlement.

Let’s take a look at the arguments:

Rights to the road

Let’s get this straight. We DGAF who does or doesn’t pay rego. In fact, kudos to you if you’ve gotten one up on the DMV, RMS or whoever else. Because it’s not like the government is going to discount driver fees were cyclists made to pay rego. Moot point. Roads are for everyone. Period. But like the open ocean isn’t suited to SUPs, and ferry crossings aren’t suited to swimmers, not all roads are for every vehicle. Common sense is used too sparingly by minority factions. You’re a citizen before you’re a cyclist. And as a citizen, you’re allowed to use any road providing you’re in the appropriate vehicle. It’s illegal to take a moped on a highway for the safety of both the owner and fellow highway users alike. Same goes for bikes.

Safety

Truth be told, anyone who sets foot, pedal or tyre on a street or highway is knowingly taking their life into their own hands. Sadly, pedestrians, drivers and cyclists die daily. And the more vulnerable your mode of transport, the greater the risk. Mick Fanning didn’t blame the shark at J-Bay for attacking him. White Lightning took responsibility for being in its habitat. So too should cyclists when on highways or busy streets. You know the risks. And it’s your own job to protect yourself, not the soccer mum with the infant kid on her way to the doctor next to you. And while that moron shouldn’t be on his phone—distracted drivers are the bane of every road user’s existence—he is. Yeah, he’s probably just on a stupid group chat about weird dicks but he could be responding to a family emergency, a job offer, or been on fucking hold with Telstra for 50 goddamned minutes and is finally speaking to customer service.

Road rules

It’s also not about obeying laws. Fuck road rules (except staying in the left lane unless overtaking, cunts). If anything, giving the bird to cops and traffic lights is what makes cyclists somewhat cool. Because drivers, pedestrians, cyclists and motorbike riders alike break laws daily—it’s human conditioning to fly in the face of unnecessary policing. Hell. I’m not bowing down to some four-way stop signs that can’t physically stop me let alone can’t tell that there are no cars coming in any other direction.

But it’s the unwritten rules of the road these pedal-powered petals need to concede to. Here it is, simply: If it’s bigger and heavier than you, it wins. Cars trump motorbikes. Busses trump cars. Trucks trump busses. And fucking everything trumps bikes—from a physics standpoint. Is it fair? Nope. But if your life, your friends and your family are more important to you than your sense of entitlement, you’ll accept that’s the way things are. Is it a cyclist’s fault if they’re hit and killed by a vehicle? Unlikely. But they knowingly put themselves into harm’s way with full knowledge of the heightened risks involved.

The environment

When you’re right, you’re right. Cycling is better for the environment. No argument here. Play on.

The thin tyre argument

“But our tyres will burst if we are forced to ride on the shoulder or in bike lanes”. Boohoo. It’s called horses for courses. Cars use mud tyres when off road and chains in the snow, and the same common sense can be applied to bikes. You suit your gear to the conditions. Not vice versa. Thicker tyres will allow you to ride on the shoulder of the road or the actual designated bike lanes without fear of puncture. You’re not a triathlete. You’re a desk jockey at Price Waterhouse Coopers.

The fitness factor

“I ride for fitness. And I need to use highways to get in enough miles to meet my goals”. Great. Here’s a challenge for you if you really wanna get the most out of your work-out—drop the featherweight bikes and pencil-thin tyres and get yourself on a good old-fashioned fat wheeler.

By all accounts, cycling is about calories, heart rate and power, and not about the miles. And you can break personal records no matter what craft you’re on. And not only will you get a better well-rounded work-out, but you’ll be spending less time on the road and in traffic, therefore significantly reducing chances of collision. And have more time to yourself to reflect on what a fuckwit you’ve been.

But what about the serenity? Cycling calms me

If dodging cars on a bendy road with blind corners if your idea of relaxation, we feel sorry for your partner.

Common courtesy

In the end, just as it’s not really about road rules and rego for the naysayers, it’s not really about the environment for the cyclists. We’re all selfish and do whatever meets our own needs. And no one can tell us differently. But one thing we can all agree on is that we’re short on time, we work too much, people are morons and traffic is fucked. And the commute is the most infuriating and time-consuming part of anyone’s day. Almost every cyclist also drives a car. Or has. And has had their morning ruined by a cyclist holding up traffic when you’re late for a flight. So swallow your fucking pride and stop being a nuisance for the sake of it. You can blow past stop signs, pop monos down the block and do sick skids at the crossing. Just stop impeding other commuters.

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