Get the look: my actual look

Of all the looks I have “gotten” since startin’ my bloggin’, this one isn’t concocted. I’m talking here about my look, that has slowly evolved over the years and that doesn’t disguise what I am: a guy who races bikes on the weekend and is largely motivated to commute on a bike to be race fit. That said, I also commute via bike to save money, and have grown to appreciate the connectedness to people and the environment that cycling provides. An example of the cyclist’s connectedness: running into fellow bike blogger Vicki this morning, and stopping for a chat when I guess I should have been heading more quickly to work. She stealthily snapped this shot with her phone and posted it earlier today on her blog.

from: bicyclesinnewcastle.com

Bike wise, “my” look consists of whatever bike I currently race on, the wheels from my previous bike that I now call my “training wheels”, a removable mud guard, and a rechargeable high powered light. Clothes wise, “my” look comprises the helmet I race in (because I can’t be bothered talking with Australia’s police), then other gear depending on weather. We have set-in rain here this week, so I wore the soft-shell rain pants (a bit steamy, sheesk), my overshoes, my wet weather jacket and a cap to stop me blinking from every last rain drop.

Why bore you here with my own self satisfaction, when your preferred style of bike, or your way of dressing would be equally nifty? Because we should all stop and be proud. I have very few Dutch or Danish readers, so can assume you too live in a country that makes god’s own mode of transport ridiculously hard, with sprawl and impossible road rules. If you have even replaced a handful of car trips with bike trips, you should already be given a medal. You never will be though, which is why pride needs to simply be taken.

I take pride in the fact that I have found a route to work that is mostly pleasant, that riding has given me the strength to keep riding, that I own a nice bike and good bike clothes, and that commuting, for me, is not something I wish took less time in my day. Actually, I would rather live further from work than I do.

5 Comments

  1. Luke says:

    Part of me is disappointed that you do not ride besuited like some stately but stylish Dutch architect (not that I actually know one or what they wear). The other part is envious of the bike, and admires “the look” (Armstrong reference?). Why do Mavic(?) wheels with red hubs look so cool, and how can I justify buying some?

    Remind me to hunt down a link to a wonderful YouTube post about cyclo-cross somewhere near Newcastle-on-Tyne. It will cheer you up in the notoriously harsh Australian winter. And I’m enjoying and learning from the developing post on ex-urban destinations.

    • Steven says:

      I’m so sorry Luke but those Mavic wheels are the very first Heliums, long ago discontinued. Everybody will tell you that they once owned a pair, rather like people who say they once planned on becoming an architect, or people who think parodying Dutch cycling heritage will progress their own nation: dreamers!

  2. Vicki says:

    Newcastle has but two degrees of separation, as demonstrated in this post ….

    And I fully expect to see Rapha pop up as one of your sponsors soon, Steven.

  3. tk says:

    why don’t you actually ask wade and see what he says?

    • Steven says:

      Hey Tom, who’s Wade? Someone from Rapha? Looking at Vicki’s photo, I think I may have a big head… or perhaps just a shrivelled up body. Isn’t that what they said we would evolve into?

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