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Old 06-11-07, 03:03 PM   #1
CdCf
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Cyclist appearance and the message it sends

Something I saw today on my way home made me think about how much we communicate about ourselves to people who see us. And how important it seems to be to some people.

Walking home from the local grocery store, a young couple rides past me. The girl on what some would call a "Dutch bike", but we refer to them as "ladies' bikes". Not only was it that kind of bike, but also a particular cheap and unsafe (yes, really - fork crowns often snap on this bike while JRA!) model which of late seems to convey a message of an "I don't care about fancy bikes" attitude. Not only that, but the bike was painted in all the colours of the rainbow, and very inexpertly so at that. To top it off, the spokes had multi-coloured plastic beads on them...

And the rider matched the bike. Neo-hippie chick with long dreads, facial piercings and all that stuff. Dressed in a loose, flowing, medium-blue dress of some sort, with thin silk-like fabric. A skirt in bright orange that seemed to be made of the same kind of fabric. Shirt in some light and clashing colour. 3/4 pants under the skirt. Can't recall the colour, but I'm sure it was equally "out of synch" as the rest. Sandals on her feet.

The guy behind was on a cheap blue department store cruiser bike. Unmodified.

He was dressed in a striped t-shirt reminiscent of the late 60s and early 70s, with its slim fit and muted earthy colours. Pale green cotton bag hanging across his upper body (left shoulder to right hip). Baggy 3/4 pants in a grey khaki colour. I think he wore sandals as well. He had that "I just woke up and haven't showered yet" medium-length fuzzy hair and a radical left-winger fashion beard (hard to describe if you don't know what I mean).

And the sad part is that I'm pretty sure these two actually spend time to look like that. It's all in the details.

As you can probably tell, I'm not too fond of people like them (I know and regularly meet a fair share of people who dress like that, and it's not a group of people I go along well with. Argumentative, too radical, see everything in black and white. But when they also go out of their way to dress like they do, it just makes me laugh.

However, it's nice to see they ride bikes after all! Even if the two they used were pretty crappy.

I'm not sure what my point with this post was. I just had to tell someone!
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Old 06-11-07, 03:10 PM   #2
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As you can probably tell, I'm not too fond of people like them.
Interesting thread. Funny how you instantly dislike someone because of their clothing style.
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Old 06-11-07, 03:18 PM   #3
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But when they also go out of their way to dress like they do, it just makes me laugh.
Do you laugh at everybody? Because I'm pretty sure everybody goes out of their way to look the way they do...
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Old 06-11-07, 03:25 PM   #4
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Wow!
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Old 06-11-07, 03:33 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by NickDavid
Interesting thread. Funny how you instantly dislike someone because of their clothing style.
Yeah, I'm not really comfortable with that myself, to be honest, but I've met enough of these people to know that, as a rule, a certain personality and attitude goes along with that style. A personality and attitude I usually don't get along with.

As usual, all generalisations are bad!

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Originally Posted by Blue Order
Do you laugh at everybody? Because I'm pretty sure everybody goes out of their way to look the way they do...
Do people go out of their way to look like they don't? I don't think so. These people try so hard to make it look like they don't care, when the opposite is the case.
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Old 06-11-07, 03:34 PM   #6
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However, it's nice to see they ride bikes after all!
They're on a bike. They've earned their place, regardless of what they look like.
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Old 06-11-07, 03:38 PM   #7
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Yeaj, I'm not really comfortable with that myself, to be honest, but I've met enough of these people to know that, as a rule, a certain personality and attitude goes along with that style. A personality and attitude I usually don't get along with.

As usual, all generalisations are bad!
It's OK, you don't have to like everybody anyway. I think the fact that there is a wide range of diversity in types of people who bike is a good thing. These two cyclists weren't your cup of tea. Nothing wrong with that.
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Old 06-11-07, 03:43 PM   #8
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'm not sure what my point with this post was. I just had to tell someone!
Well i think the point of the post is that you just don't like the way some people look.

Being here in L.A. I am personally just plain happy to see any person riding a bike. In an average day I see all sorts, I try to smile, nod, wave, ring my bell or just say hi if I am not too caught up in my own riding. If i see a "hippy", "roadie" bike messenger or "hipster fashionista" out riding it just plain makes me happy. I don't care how they look or what they ride. i'm just happy to more bikes on the road.

I have friends that are super-straight laced others that are fashion vicims, some that are nerdy and practical, and others that are just plain sloppy. They all have different reasons why they express themselves through their fashion sense but they are all good people.

I have a feeling if you just smiled and waved those hippy kids would probally smile and wave back at you. You don't have to ask them to dinner, but why not just smile and be happy that there are some people out there having fun together riding their crappy bikes?
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Old 06-11-07, 03:48 PM   #9
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I am happy they were on their bikes. And I said so in my first post.
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Old 06-11-07, 03:57 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CdCf
And the rider matched the bike. Neo-hippie chick with long dreads, facial piercings and all that stuff. Dressed in a loose, flowing, medium-blue dress of some sort, with thin silk-like fabric. A skirt in bright orange that seemed to be made of the same kind of fabric. Shirt in some light and clashing colour. 3/4 pants under the skirt. Can't recall the colour, but I'm sure it was equally "out of synch" as the rest. Sandals on her feet.

The guy behind was on a cheap blue department store cruiser bike. Unmodified.

He was dressed in a striped t-shirt reminiscent of the late 60s and early 70s, with its slim fit and muted earthy colours. Pale green cotton bag hanging across his upper body (left shoulder to right hip). Baggy 3/4 pants in a grey khaki colour. I think he wore sandals as well. He had that "I just woke up and haven't showered yet" medium-length fuzzy hair and a radical left-winger fashion beard (hard to describe if you don't know what I mean).
You know, when I was reading your description, I could have sworn I detected the smell of body odor and marijuana!
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Old 06-11-07, 03:57 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by CdCf
...
see everything in black and white.
...
Another case of the pot calling the kettle...
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Old 06-11-07, 04:05 PM   #12
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Yeah, keep 'em coming. As I said, I don't like this side of myself.

I blame Pavlov.
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Old 06-11-07, 04:08 PM   #13
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I want my goatee back. :/
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Old 06-11-07, 04:09 PM   #14
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it's a side that everyone has and you're fooling yourself if you think you don't. just be careful and don't let it go too far. afterall, most of us fit a certain sterotype when we're on our bikes out in the world. and leave plenty of room for being wrong because some day someone will surprise you and be something entirely different than you expect.
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Old 06-11-07, 04:14 PM   #15
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it's a side that everyone has and you're fooling yourself if you think you don't. just be careful and don't let it go too far. afterall, most of us fit a certain sterotype when we're on our bikes out in the world. and leave plenty of room for being wrong because some day someone will surprise you and be something entirely different than you expect.
Well said.
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Old 06-11-07, 04:38 PM   #16
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Plus, chicks with dreads are hot
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Old 06-11-07, 04:54 PM   #17
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Plus, chicks with dreads are hot
That's because of hair's insulating qualities. If they'd cut the dreads, they could cool off...
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Old 06-11-07, 05:20 PM   #18
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Conforming to non-conformity. It's harder than you'd think. Back in college, I remember this preppy type chick who hooked up with a hippie type. She was telling her friend about the franklins she dropped at the mall trying to get the poor hippie activist look down. On the other hand, she was also the type that when she quit wearing any makeup, she was still smoking hot.
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Old 06-11-07, 05:28 PM   #19
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Conforming to non-conformity. .
Yea, why is it that everyone that tries to be "different" all end up being the same? How many "different" people are there with tattoes and facial piercings?
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Old 06-11-07, 05:29 PM   #20
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Yea, why is it that everyone that tries to be "different" all end up being the same? How many "different" people are there with tattoes and facial piercings?
Millions wear the uniform...
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Old 06-11-07, 05:32 PM   #21
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Cyclists = Star-Bellied Sneetches

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Old 06-11-07, 05:39 PM   #22
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Not only that, but the bike was painted in all the colours of the rainbow, and very inexpertly so at that. To top it off, the spokes had multi-coloured plastic beads on them...
Excellent!

It's funny, I'd love to see people riding the "Dutch bikes" you look down on. Here I see people trying in vain to fit groceries on full suspension mountain beasties.
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Old 06-11-07, 05:40 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CdCf
Something I saw today on my way home made me think about how much we communicate about ourselves to people who see us. And how important it seems to be to some people.

Walking home from the local grocery store, a young couple rides past me. The girl on what some would call a "Dutch bike", but we refer to them as "ladies' bikes". Not only was it that kind of bike, but also a particular cheap and unsafe (yes, really - fork crowns often snap on this bike while JRA!) model which of late seems to convey a message of an "I don't care about fancy bikes" attitude. Not only that, but the bike was painted in all the colours of the rainbow, and very inexpertly so at that. To top it off, the spokes had multi-coloured plastic beads on them...

And the rider matched the bike. Neo-hippie chick with long dreads, facial piercings and all that stuff. Dressed in a loose, flowing, medium-blue dress of some sort, with thin silk-like fabric. A skirt in bright orange that seemed to be made of the same kind of fabric. Shirt in some light and clashing colour. 3/4 pants under the skirt. Can't recall the colour, but I'm sure it was equally "out of synch" as the rest. Sandals on her feet.

The guy behind was on a cheap blue department store cruiser bike. Unmodified.

He was dressed in a striped t-shirt reminiscent of the late 60s and early 70s, with its slim fit and muted earthy colours. Pale green cotton bag hanging across his upper body (left shoulder to right hip). Baggy 3/4 pants in a grey khaki colour. I think he wore sandals as well. He had that "I just woke up and haven't showered yet" medium-length fuzzy hair and a radical left-winger fashion beard (hard to describe if you don't know what I mean).

And the sad part is that I'm pretty sure these two actually spend time to look like that. It's all in the details.

As you can probably tell, I'm not too fond of people like them (I know and regularly meet a fair share of people who dress like that, and it's not a group of people I go along well with. Argumentative, too radical, see everything in black and white. But when they also go out of their way to dress like they do, it just makes me laugh.

However, it's nice to see they ride bikes after all! Even if the two they used were pretty crappy.


I'm not sure what my point with this post was. I just had to tell someone!
'nuff said…
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Old 06-11-07, 06:02 PM   #24
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They're on a bike. They've earned their place, regardless of what they look like.
`Nuff said, part deux. Us Freds be all-inclusive.
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Old 06-11-07, 07:02 PM   #25
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an inexpertly painted bike!?
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