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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 05-04-14, 07:32 PM   #1
WK95
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Commuting without looking like a Fred or Hipster - Possible?

Next year, I plan to commute to college by bike since I'll be living off campus and don't have a car.

So, how can I commute by bike and not look like a Fred or a Hipster (Or whichever is the lesser of two evils [to a roadie] or the least Fred-like or Hipsterish?
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Old 05-04-14, 07:40 PM   #2
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Ride what and in what manner pleases you.
Those that mind don't matter,
and those that matter don't mind.
srsly.
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Old 05-04-14, 07:42 PM   #3
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What's a Fred?
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Old 05-04-14, 07:43 PM   #4
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I don't worry about it and just do what is practical for me. That ends up being a wird combination of Fred and Cycle-chic. I ride wearing a stylish dress and heels, plus a high- vis vest, blinkies, and a mirror.
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Old 05-04-14, 07:43 PM   #5
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What's a Fred?
It's an insult... Generally means a new rider..
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Old 05-04-14, 07:46 PM   #6
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It's an insult... Generally means a new rider..
i was using it this way:
Fred” is a cyclist who has a ton of cycling gear, especially of the utilitarian “uncool” kind, like mirrors, powerful lights, fenders, bells/horns, heavy leather seats, racks, reflective gear, bags, baskets, etc. The gear and bike may be put together by kludgey homemade solutions, like duct-taped flashlights to the handlebar. This type of Fred is a bike geek who likes/needs lots of gear (even if it is modified stuff not intended for bikes) that a racer would never use, no matter what roadie cyclists or others think. Sacrificing some, or ignoring completely, concerns of speed or traditional roadie/sport cyclist style, these type of Freds are more concerned with practical concerns like comfort, safety, versatility, maintenance, being able to quickly transition to time and culture on/off the bicycle, etc. Freds of this type can be well aware of their fredness, once they are aware of the concept, and often embrace it wholeheartedly.

cite: Bicycling: Are you a Fred? | The Bis Key Chronicles
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Old 05-04-14, 07:47 PM   #7
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Ride what and in what manner pleases you.
Those that mind don't matter,
and those that matter don't mind.
srsly.
Truth.

...and I may have found my new sig...(with permission of course).
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Old 05-04-14, 07:51 PM   #8
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It's an insult... Generally means a new rider..
I don't say it as an insult though.
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Old 05-04-14, 07:53 PM   #9
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Old 05-04-14, 07:55 PM   #10
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Truth.

...and I may have found my new sig...(with permission of course).
I'd be honored.
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Old 05-04-14, 08:03 PM   #11
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I love it when I look like a "Fred" and someone passes me and they basically roll their eyes, and I decide to just see what this person "has"... I pick up the pace and sure as shiate they invariably look back to see how much "better" they are than me. And there I am, right there with them... Then they really start to pick up the pace and look back again, and there I am, right there with them... Along comes a hill and now they are standing and giving it everything they have into it, they look back and there I am, right there with them... Halfway up the hill I decide it's time to pass and I do, I smile and wave and they are invariably spent, and just deflate/dejected, as I role past without seeming like I am giving it my all... Then they see my E-Assist, and a big sigh of relief comes over them when they realise it was my E-Assist that they were racing and loosing to...
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Old 05-04-14, 08:07 PM   #12
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Does anyone really care what anyone else looks like on a bike? I certainly don't. Got other things to worry about.
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Old 05-04-14, 08:12 PM   #13
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Old 05-04-14, 08:13 PM   #14
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Alan S said it, why care?

But to answer the question simply, just get on your bike and ride the commute. You'll look the same as you do on any other ride.
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Old 05-04-14, 08:15 PM   #15
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If you don't want to look like a "fred" or "hipster...Then you should dress yourself like an "elitist". Or how about making yourself look like a "posenger" (AKA fakenger). You have a lot of different options and styles, to choose from

Last edited by wolfchild; 05-04-14 at 08:50 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 05-04-14, 08:35 PM   #16
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Sure, you can do it. Take a bare frame, race oriented bike. SLIP one water bottle into cage, put on your finest Spandex and pedal like mad! Of course, without a rack and planners or any sort of bag you won't have any clothes to change into that aren't sweaty. No lights and no reflectors because you can see like an owl in the dark, even if drivers can't. No tool roll either with stuff to change a tire or replace a broken link on a chain because, hey, stuff like that never happens--right? And no bell or horn as there's no need for anything but your stentorian voice as you screAm yourself hoarse letting folks know you're coming through, or don't turn in front of me. Nope, no need for any of these things. Wouldn't want to ruin your all important image, right?
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Old 05-04-14, 08:38 PM   #17
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Just ride man!!!! Screw what other people think!!!!
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Old 05-04-14, 08:47 PM   #18
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This thread needs to be sent to Foo. Much too silly for Commuting.

For the love of all that is good and holy, just find something reasonably comfortable and safe to wear that meets the demands of your local climate and regulations. Then find a bicycle that does the same and proceed to ride it like you stole it. To work, to class, to the store, to the pub, to wherever, and then back to your place of residence.

Notice that "caring what you look like to others" is not mentioned.
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Old 05-04-14, 09:07 PM   #19
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I love it when I look like a "Fred" and someone passes me and they basically roll their eyes, and I decide to just see what this person "has"... I pick up the pace and sure as shiate they invariably look back to see how much "better" they are than me. And there I am, right there with them... Then they really start to pick up the pace and look back again, and there I am, right there with them... Along comes a hill and now they are standing and giving it everything they have into it, they look back and there I am, right there with them... Halfway up the hill I decide it's time to pass and I do, I smile and wave and they are invariably spent, and just deflate/dejected, as I role past without seeming like I am giving it my all... Then they see my E-Assist, and a big sigh of relief comes over them when they realise it was my E-Assist that they were racing and loosing to...

You must have given many a roadie's ego a heart attack haha
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Old 05-04-14, 09:08 PM   #20
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If you don't want to look like a "fred" or "hipster...Then you should dress yourself like an "elitist". Or how about making yourself look like a "posenger" (AKA fakenger). You have a lot of different options and styles, to choose from
What's a posenger?
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Old 05-04-14, 09:37 PM   #21
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What's a posenger?
It's people who pretend that they are bike messengers.
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Old 05-04-14, 09:58 PM   #22
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Next year, I plan to commute to college by bike since I'll be living off campus and don't have a car.

So, how can I commute by bike and not look like a Fred or a Hipster (Or whichever is the lesser of two evils [to a roadie] or the least Fred-like or Hipsterish?
Just attach a few garbage bags full of empty cans to your bike, and wear sweat pants and a dirty old baseball cap.
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Old 05-04-14, 10:10 PM   #23
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Be yourself. Pick stuff that works for you. Know what's important to you. Stop worrying about your image and maximize your ability to safely and comfortably enjoy riding, for whatever purpose you do it. And if you end up looking to someone else like a hipster or god forbid a Fred, who the f**k cares? The people who judge others like that suck anyway so there's really no downside.
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Old 05-04-14, 11:09 PM   #24
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Old 05-04-14, 11:23 PM   #25
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You must have given many a roadie's ego a heart attack haha
What is with all the drama/concern about what so-called roadies think about how bicyclists dress?
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