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  1. #1
    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    Rant: Latest trends... Posers!

    Hello everyone!

    Along with a massive boom in new cyclists here in Greece, mostly due to the economy, is the latest in cycling trends... Posers! Even though there really is a serious financial situation which has left 50% of the young people without work, the latest emerging trend is people spending ridiculous amounts of money on cycling gear, dressing up like Lance and joyriding on promenade sidewalks for a couple of miles each weekend!



    A week ago, a younger couple living across the street were loading up two spanking new Specialized road bikes (carbon of course!) onto their BMW X5 suv. Both were dressed in spandex tights with local team logos and looked to be in fit shape, so I thought that they were probably semi-pro or pro riders heading out to practice. Trying to be a polite neighbor, I nodded at them, and received a indifferent look from the guy who went on looking over my bike with a sarcastic expression.

    Not giving any other thought, I headed out for work which takes me through a small marina 2 kilometers from home, where I thought I saw the X5 parked. Again this morning the same thing, both were loading their bikes on the car, in full race gear, and again my route was through the marina's parking and there they were again, unloading their bikes!

    I couldn't resist, and went up to the woman and said hello, and that I was their neighbor, and we started a conversation and she went ahead and told me that this was their ritual every weekend or holiday (it's Good Friday here in Greece, a partial holiday) where they would load up their bikes and drive a full 2km! to unload them and ride around for 30 minutes in the marina and the promenade sidewalk!!!

    Looking around the parking lot, I counted over 30% of the cars having bike racks, and were probably living within 5 kilometers of the marina itself! This along with paying some close attention to the cyclists around me which were mostly riding expensive bikes, around and around at jogging speeds, stopping often to gulp up some energy drink they had just purchased in the marina's kiosk opened my eyes to this new emerging trend!



    The only thing I look forward to, is the availability of good quality used bikes when all these posers get tired of the load/drive/unload ritual and start selling their equipment for peanuts. Other than that, it really is saddening to see cyclist who really do cycle daily to work and can't afford a descent bike because of the economy.


    P.S. Sorry for the long post, I just wanted to get it out of my system!
    P.S.S. I'll snap of few photos of some of these posers for your amusement!

  2. #2
    Senior Member ill.clyde's Avatar
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    At least they're riding ...

  3. #3
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    Don't be a hater because they have more disposable income. You ride your bike how you want, they'll ride theirs how they want to. That's what makes cycling so great.

  4. #4
    Senior Member kv501's Avatar
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    This is a predominantly American forum; you are going to get little support for the idea that people shouldn't spend a lot of money in whatever way they feel like, and ESPECIALLY that "cyclist[s] who really do cycle daily to work and can't afford a descent bike because of the economy" deserve bikes more than the so-called rich people. If someone has less money than me it doesn't give him or her an entitlement to anything of mine, just because they may or may not make (what you'd call) better use of it.

    If I had a ton of disposable income (which I don't), I can tell you for sure that I'd be doing things that were way more frivolous than that.

  5. #5
    Carpe Velo Yo Spiff's Avatar
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    I've got to get myself one of these jerseys.
    2000 Bianchi Veloce, '88 Schwinn Prologue, '88 Trek 900, '92 Trek T100, 2000 Rans Tailwind

  6. #6
    Senior Member SuncoastChad's Avatar
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    ^^^ I agree about needing the jersey. Also, if it's after 10:00 AM he needs to lose the cappuccino and go espresso!
    Before hitting "Enter" or "Send" ask yourself: Is this true? Is this kind? Is this NECESSARY?
    I once had a Colnago/Campy bike built in Italy...then life caught up with me!
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  7. #7
    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    @Paiser: I'm not a hater, and I didn't want my post to come out sounding like one!

    @kv501: Being an ex-pat myself, and working and making a living all my life, I'm all for the freedom of spending my money any way I like, and trust me, I'd done thing much more frivolous than that... my post above has to do with taking a positive notion such as cycling and making it a trend; a fashion if you like, which certainly won't help a city like Athens which is struggling to get some very basic infrastructures such as bike lanes and paths which are non-existent right now. City officials need the very basic of excuses to avoid having to spend money on cycling infrastructures, and seeing people drive to local parks for short joyrides is definitely going to be at the top of their list!

    @Vo Spiff & SuncoastChad: I gotta have one myself !!!

  8. #8
    Am I evil? I am Man!!! Mr Sinister's Avatar
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    I took this rant more on the tone of WTF people, you have nice bikes, ride the 2km to where you want to ride, and then ride that. No need for the car, as its only a few minutes away by car, and about 10 by bike. If you just ride there, then you save on the time to put them on the car, take them off the car and all that. So it works as a wash, BUT you save money as you don't waste gas on a stupid 10 minute trip.

    *** Edited to take out where I felt the profanities were ***
    Quote Originally Posted by WonderMonkey View Post
    I plan on laying on the floor of my office and crying around mid-morning.
    the-rules

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  9. #9
    Senior Member volosong's Avatar
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    Love the Poseur/Charlatan jersey. Yeah, I want one too. Except that I'd want "Fred" printed on the sleeves.

    Telly, like you say, there is a bright spot ... inexpensive, barely used, quality carbon bikes at the end of the summer. Start saving your pennies, (or is it shekels or drachmas? I don't know.)
    Deut 6:5

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  10. #10
    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by volosong View Post
    Love the Poseur/Charlatan jersey. Yeah, I want one too. Except that I'd want "Fred" printed on the sleeves.
    Telly, like you say, there is a bright spot ... inexpensive, barely used, quality carbon bikes at the end of the summer. Start saving your pennies, (or is it shekels or drachmas? I don't know.)
    Great idea about the "Fred" on the sleeves... I'm definitely there, even have a air-horn! lol
    As for great after-summers deals... I'm saving my cents (Euro cents), but they might turn out to be Drachma's by then! lol Honestly though, I still prefer aluminum to carbon, but who know's... if the price is right!

  11. #11
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    Buying bikes, kits, bike-racks, helmets, sports drinks... hey, they're stimulating the economy!

    Also, I really want one of those jerseys, too.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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  12. #12
    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    Absolutely true, but there's also the other side of the coin... 3 new bike shops have opened up near my home; that in itself is great, BUT all three owners have no knowledge, or love of cycling (two of them don't even cycle), and the staff also is woefully in the dark on matters concerning customer needs, and safety. I had to personally show a staff member who was in charge of partial assembly how to properly put together a bike and adjust the brakes because the last batch of bikes sold were given to the customers with totally unaligned brakes and derailleurs!

  13. #13
    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yo Spiff View Post
    I've got to get myself one of these jerseys.
    http://www.elevengear.us/poseur.html

  14. #14
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    kinda like saying "why to fat people ride?" Maybe they just want to ride in full kit. More power to them.

    Come on Telly... since most of our bikes are Fred up (at least for commuting... ok ok ok.... mine is!) I do not care what others ride.

    (Actually I care MORE if they are wearing a helmet or not..... but dont get me on my soap box.......)

  15. #15
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    I am puzzled how easily the OPs comment/observation/frustration was received differently by some people. I don't see where some posters see that he is jealous because the other people have nicer bikes, or have more money (or more debt...), or the one that pretty much defends his right to spend his money anyway he likes!!! Who said the opposite? And what makes that only understood by an American audience only? The way I read it is that a couple of lazy people (ok yuppies) bought expensive bikes to ride around at very slow speeds at the marina where lots of people walk etc and they are so lazy that they won't ride their bikes there even though it is a little over a mile away. I see folks that do things to be seen and not to enjoy/exercise all the time too. Hummer drivers come to mind...

  16. #16
    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    @Shimagnolo, thanks for the link! They even have it my size too!

    @ChefIsaac, I'm not saying that I care what they ride, or their financial status... it's this kind of mentality that causes more problems than anything else; like what I mentioned above with the LBS and cycling infrastructure (or lack of). @AggSt1 has hit the nail on the head with what I'm trying to say, and I'll back it up with a quick story of what happens with this behavior and mentality:

    Years ago a groups of friends and I got the racing bug (car that is), and we put together a small team, bought a old car and converted it to an uphill rally racer (European thing, sorta like Pikes Peak). We were doing pretty good, and the sport was steadily gaining ground and all was well in the world! After some time, more and more teams started signing up, but the majority were weekend warriors (like ourselves), but with no real love for racing. They were more interested in the attention the sport was getting and the chance to show off to their friends that they had become rally drivers. The outcome was continuous delays in starting because of people not knowing regulations coupled with frequent accidents because of poor driving skills which started to put off spectators and within a short period most of the major teams were pulling out since it stopped being fun, financially viable and spectators attendance dropped.

    The above scenario can easily happen to cycling (not sport or racing, but everyday commuting). Posers will eventually be tired of cycling and adopt some new trend, LBS will of course close since the economy isn't stable enough to have so many new shops and the local authorities will use this excuse to abandon any cycling infrastructure development since they will have noticed a sudden drop in cycling. Greece is a small country, and these trends only end up hurting the cause; I've seen this happen in racing, car restoration and even in private aviation... with the exact same outcome every time, and it's especially painful to see this in cycling since there really is a growing movement in commuting, but it's relatively unseen by the majority of people who just notice the weekend posers which stand out.

    I honestly hope I haven't come off as biased or jealous... and I hope the above isn't too badly written; it's 5.30 in the morning here and I haven't been able to get much sleep!

  17. #17
    Senior Member bluegoatwoods's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aggst1 View Post
    I am puzzled how easily the OPs comment/observation/frustration was received differently by some people. I don't see where some posters see that he is jealous because the other people have nicer bikes, or have more money (or more debt...), or the one that pretty much defends his right to spend his money anyway he likes!!! Who said the opposite? And what makes that only understood by an American audience only? The way I read it is that a couple of lazy people (ok yuppies) bought expensive bikes to ride around at very slow speeds at the marina where lots of people walk etc and they are so lazy that they won't ride their bikes there even though it is a little over a mile away. I see folks that do things to be seen and not to enjoy/exercise all the time too. Hummer drivers come to mind...

    Yes! Go easy on the OP, folks. After all, he identified it as a rant right up front. If we can't rant amongst ourselves on this subject which means a lot to us, then who can we rant to? The people in our lives who won't ride a bike to save- in many cases, literally- their lives?

    And I'm with him on the subject of people who invade our territory with no sincerity. Those who buy a nice bike and nice accessories for the sake of fashion. The mere thought is disgusting. I don't want them and I wish they'd find some other way to imagine that they're cool.

    And don't forget that they are often the rudest riders on the road, giving the rest of us a bad name.

    So, to Telly; Right on! Rave on and Rant on!

    I'm with ya, brother.

  18. #18
    The Left Coast, USA FrenchFit's Avatar
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    Nah, there's more here than simple ranting. I remember the complaints about people buying houses they couldn't afford, and the counter-point was - it's not your business, who cares? I remember when the windsurfing industry went crazy making and marketing the lightest, hi tech uber-expensive racing stuff - which anyone could simply ignore I suppose..., but it priced people out of the sport. And when one of the selling points of a good new car was you could do most of the maintenance yourself, and those days are long gone..try working on my 740i, yo.

    Extremes tend to crowd out the practical and accessible, kill a good thing....poseurs push it along. I think owning an LBS these days would be tough, you'd have to inventory a lot of stupid high priced racer stuff just to stay in the game. I think that's going to crowd out the stuff we're looking for...meaning we are now the odd-balls searching for our stuff on-line, ordering it from 6000 miles away.
    Last edited by FrenchFit; 04-13-12 at 09:03 PM.

  19. #19
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    I wonder just where one draws the line of "posers" status. Some will say if a rider has never done a century, then they are a poser. Some say if you have never climbed 5,000 ft. Others will say a century with 10,000 ft, others will say if you dont race, where does it end? Where does it begin?

  20. #20
    Senior Member Shimagnolo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
    Others will say a century with 10,000 ft...
    <MAXWELL SMART VOICE>
    Missed it by *that* much!
    </MAXWELL SMART VOICE>

    (My max was 9800' climbing)

  21. #21
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
    <MAXWELL SMART VOICE>
    Missed it by *that* much!
    </MAXWELL SMART VOICE>

    (My max was 9800' climbing)
    <MAXWELL SMART VOICE> The ol "missed it by that much" trick...that's the second time I fell for it today</MAXWELL SMART VOICE>

  22. #22
    The Left Coast, USA FrenchFit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
    I wonder just where one draws the line of "posers" status. Some will say if a rider has never done a century, then they are a poser. Some say if you have never climbed 5,000 ft. Others will say a century with 10,000 ft, others will say if you dont race, where does it end? Where does it begin?
    With talent.
    Last edited by FrenchFit; 04-14-12 at 12:07 AM.

  23. #23
    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Beanz View Post
    I wonder just where one draws the line of "posers" status. Some will say if a rider has never done a century, then they are a poser. Some say if you have never climbed 5,000 ft. Others will say a century with 10,000 ft, others will say if you dont race, where does it end? Where does it begin?
    For me, i's the easiest question to answer...

    You're not a poser (or is it poseurs?) if:
    * you're on a $1 thrift store bike, or a $10,000 state-of-the-art competition racer and you wouldn't want to be anywhere else than on that saddle!
    * you're a 40yo overweight man (like myself) who feels like a 10yo boy pedaling along while commuting to work!
    * you manage to finish your first long(ish) ride and can't wait to share this info and experience with friends here on BF!
    * you customize your ride with little trinkets and DIY contraptions and share them with other members here on BF and everyone works on improving them neither caring how much they cost or what value they give your ride other than the satisfaction of achieving your goal!
    * and the most important point of all... you smile and enjoy every minute of cycling!

    If I see even 1 of the above on the people I talked about in my original post, then I take everything back.

  24. #24
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    So anybody who doesn't share your aspirations and / or goals is a poseur?

    Are your skinny lazy neighbors enjoying their ride around the congested sidewalk?

    NB: I don't commute to work because I work at home, and when I do drive to my office it's 65 miles one way. I typically drive to where I ride for a variety of reasons that make sense to me. I wrench my own bike but I have no DIY contraptions on it. Yes, my bike could be construed as expensive and carbon both. I tend to grimace when cycling, but I assure you I enjoy it. I assure you I don't care if anybody I see while riding thinks I'm a poseur, a fred, or any of the other derogatory names we ascribe to fellow cyclists. As a man in my 40s, I just don't care.

  25. #25
    What, me worry? Telly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    So anybody who doesn't share your aspirations and / or goals is
    If that's what you got out of my post then I'm sorry but you didn't catch the spirit of my post. Unfortunately its difficult to convey thoughts over forums.

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