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Prejudice against touring cyclists

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Prejudice against touring cyclists

Old 12-08-14, 03:11 PM
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choumichou
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Prejudice against touring cyclists

I heard this more than once :

-No girl would date a guy all the time on a bike
-There is no big difference between a touring cyclist and a homeless
-This guy is selfish a loser and has no life
-The most ridiculous activity is pedaling all day
-Give some charity to this lonely guy on the road who lives on a frame
-He has no understanding of means of transportation and history of roads
-He 's probably too smelly tell him to go away far from my land
-Pity on him how ridiculous his struggling with the hill, get a car

Last edited by Mark Stone; 12-09-14 at 10:01 PM. Reason: Edited out offensive term
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Old 12-08-14, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by choumichou View Post
I heard this more than once :

-No girl would date a guy all the time on a bike
-There is no big difference between a touring cyclist and a homeless
-This guy is selfish a loser and has no life
-The most ridiculous activity is pedaling all day
-Give some charity to this lonely guy on the road who lives on a frame
-He has no understanding of means of transportation and history of roads
-He 's probably too smelly tell him to go away far from my land
-Pity on him how ridiculous his struggling with the hill, get a car
objectively, i can only argue with a couple of them.

Last edited by Mark Stone; 12-09-14 at 10:01 PM.
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Old 12-08-14, 03:35 PM
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I've never encountered this myself. When I am touring, I find that most people I meet are friendly and curious about the trip.
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Old 12-08-14, 03:38 PM
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I never heard that, I've read people who say they've heard that but the list of what people say they've heard is pretty long.

People can say all kinds of things whether you're in a 20yr old Honda Civic or a 2014 BMW.

Just think of all the things people say about people with tattoos, piercings, short hair, long hair, skinny legs, hairy legs, freckles, young, old, in-between, tall, short, fat, white teeth, bugs in teeth, "I voted" stickers, NRA stickers, "my other car is a kayak" sticker, sprouts in a water bottle, beer can alcohol stove, cheap bike w metal baskets, $6000 super duper bike.

I find most prejudices are along racial, religious and regional divisions than whether someone rides a bicycle or plays tennis.
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Old 12-08-14, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by tarwheel View Post
I've never encountered this myself. When I am touring, I find that most people I meet are friendly and curious about the trip.
Most of it is heard before the trip or by some bmws passing you
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Old 12-08-14, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by choumichou View Post
Most of it is heard before the trip or by some bmws passing you
You have very good hearing
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Old 12-08-14, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by LeeG View Post
I never heard that, I've read people who say they've heard that but the list of what people say they've heard is pretty long.

People can say all kinds of things whether you're in a 20yr old Honda Civic or a 2014 BMW.

Just think of all the things people say about people with tattoos, piercings, short hair, long hair, skinny legs, hairy legs, freckles, young, old, in-between, tall, short, fat, white teeth, bugs in teeth, "I voted" stickers, NRA stickers, "my other car is a kayak" sticker, sprouts in a water bottle, beer can alcohol stove, cheap bike w metal baskets, $6000 super duper bike.

I find most prejudices are along racial, religious and regional divisions than whether someone rides a bicycle or plays tennis.
I totally agree with the above statements, and the people that are telling these silly remarks to you should consider this before making such silly and judgemental statements.
Just going on your grammar, you are not in or not from North America. That is ok. But it sounds like to me that this comes more from the elders in your community or parents/grandparents.
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Old 12-08-14, 04:17 PM
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Originally Posted by choumichou View Post
I heard this more than once :

-No girl would date a guy all the time on a bike,it looks gay
-There is no big difference between a touring cyclist and a homeless
-This guy is selfish a loser and has no life
-The most ridiculous activity is pedaling all day
-Give some charity to this lonely guy on the road who lives on a frame
-He has no understanding of means of transportation and history of roads
-He 's probably too smelly tell him to go away far from my land
-Pity on him how ridiculous his struggling with the hill, get a car
Really?

I've never heard anyone say any of that.
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Old 12-08-14, 04:18 PM
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I don't worry about other's opinions that much.

A few months ago I went on a 100 mile RT ride to pick up a couple of bike frames for sale in a nearby town.

On the way back, I stopped in a park for a snack where the park ranger was cleaning out the trash cans.

He asked me if I wanted him to set the cans and bottles aside (we have a bottle return law in Oregon).
I politely said no thank you.
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Old 12-08-14, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by LeeG View Post
You have very good hearing
+1

I can never hear what people shout from cars. I'm sure they think they're making some sort of coherent statement, but all I hear is "Yada Blah Blah Goooo"
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Old 12-08-14, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
Really?

I've never heard anyone say any of that.
My wife tells me I'm selfish and a loser all the time.
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Old 12-08-14, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
but all I hear is "Yada Blah Blah Goooo"
Machka, I am reporting this to the forum moderator. That is the foulest language I have ever heard!




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Old 12-08-14, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
I've never heard anyone say any of that.
Me neither
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Old 12-08-14, 04:33 PM
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I've only heard kind words while touring - people are either curious about where I am riding to/from or are interested in my bike (riding an american-brand bike in Ireland, for instance, turned a few heads). I suppose it depends on the area you're touring in though and how receptive people are to 'different'.
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Old 12-08-14, 04:46 PM
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Where? what state in what country or countries are you referring to?

Last edited by fietsbob; 12-08-14 at 04:53 PM.
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Old 12-08-14, 05:53 PM
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"Aren't you afraid out there?" "What's your mileage on that thing?" "Where you going?" "Where do you sleep?"

Covers 90% of the questions I've been asked. Mostly, ppl are too busy with their own lives to be interested in mine.
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Old 12-08-14, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I don't worry about other's opinions that much.

A few months ago I went on a 100 mile RT ride to pick up a couple of bike frames for sale in a nearby town.

On the way back, I stopped in a park for a snack where the park ranger was cleaning out the trash cans.

He asked me if I wanted him to set the cans and bottles aside (we have a bottle return law in Oregon).
I politely said no thank you.
That's funny. I have had a similar thing happen, when I got off a canal trail on the Grand Illinois Trail, covered in mud, with scratches all over, in freezing cold weather(I really was having a good time). It was in some larger town, and as I stood on a corner looking at a map trying to find my bearings a woman came up to me and kindly told me where the homeless shelter was. I was kind of confused for a moment, wondering why this lady wanted me to know that, then I figured it out, and asked if there was a Marriott, Embassy Suites or even a Double tree in town. I actually ended up at a campground, but it was a funny conversation.

The only one of those I have only heard that its goofy to pedal all day, but that was actually me, to myself, early in the morning when getting the day started...
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Old 12-08-14, 06:32 PM
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I've had a loaf of bread thrown at me? Not sure if that was meant to be a nice thing or not.

No really, I have had no real issues with public over the years, minus bad drivers. People are usually more good about things than bad I find in life. They make fun of you in the good days ("don't you wish you had a motor" type comments), but if you had major problems, I am 100% sure that they help you out.

And many girls really don't care if you ride a bicycle or not. Some are even turned on by it....
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Old 12-08-14, 06:48 PM
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Originally Posted by SparkyGA View Post
I've had a loaf of bread thrown at me? Not sure if that was meant to be a nice thing or not. ...
maybe their intent was to feed you like zoo animals, but wanted to keep their distance.
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Old 12-08-14, 06:51 PM
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I find one definition of a tourist is "a person who visits a location other than his own home".
I find one definition of a nomad is "someone with no permanent home".

So it might be a matter of definitions. If you have no fixed home and own nothing but what's on your bike, that is not the normal concept of a "bicycle tourist".

It might be more clear with hiking. If you leave your home in Walla Walla, take a backpack and go hike the Appalachian Trail for 3 months, you're a "backpacker". I don't know but what that might be a good way to meet women, haven't tried it.
If you take a backpack and roam around the country indefinitely with no destination and no fixed address, you're not a backpacker, you're a "hobo", and that's probably a pretty lousy way to meet women.
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Old 12-08-14, 07:09 PM
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Actually, I always feel like I'm treated better when I arrive by bike than when traveling in a car.

I've never heard any of these comments; just the opposite, with folks being kind, curious and helpful. We've been invited to stay at peoples' homes, and dragged home by cyclists for lunch or dinner. We had a motel owner offer to do our laundry and apologizing for not having it folded when we came to pick it up. A group of people leaving church one Sunday morning as we were riding through a small Nebraska town stopped to talk to us, and wondered if it was OK with us if they said a prayer for our safety............................

We tend to stay off the popular bike routes, such as the ACA routes, so a loaded bike tourer is still a novelty in many of the places we ride through. The bike is a great ice breaker, and we meet some great people. On a recent tour my wife was talking to a father and son who stopped to visit as I fixed a flat tire. The father did not speak English so the son was acting as an interpreter. When the father asked why we choose to travel by bike my wife said," to meet people like you". When his son told him what she said, his eyes lit up complemented with a wonderful smile. That is what bike touring is all about.

We've had so many people help us that we made this card to give as a "thank you".


A young English speaking woman at a museum in The Netherlands made a comment as I walked by in my bike shorts; "you have very nice legs". She got a little embarrassed when I replied "thank you" in English. Made my day My wife was laughing so hard I thought she was going to cry.

There are people who totally get why you tour on a bike and understand; then there are people who really don't have a clue, and wonder why you'd rather ride a bike than go on a cruise. You can tell after about 30 seconds what type you are talking to. I think the folks making the type of remarks the OP is referring to are the clueless type, and does it really matter.

PS. We are also not likely to be mistaken for a homeless people because we wear helmets.

Last edited by Doug64; 12-09-14 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 12-09-14, 03:20 AM
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Originally Posted by SparkyGA View Post
And many girls really don't care if you ride a bicycle or not. Some are even turned on by it....
Hmm... where do I find these girls that you speak of...

Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
Actually, I always feel like I'm treated better when I arrive by bike than when traveling in a car.

PS. We are also not likely to be mistaken for a homeless people because we wear helmets.
I agree. People actually seem to like something about a bike tourer. I almost feel like there's some unspoken rule to be nicer than usual to us. It's weird. I guess it's just that we're out or the ordinary for their daily experience. I think you're overestimating your helmet, though. I, and many others, ride bikes without helmets, and I don't think people assume we're homeless.

Last edited by 3speed; 12-09-14 at 03:34 AM.
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Old 12-09-14, 05:41 AM
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I have generally been greeted with friendliness, curiosity, generosity, kindness, and sometimes even admiration pretty much everywhere I have bike toured. Travelling by car, indifference is more often what I am greeted with.
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Old 12-09-14, 07:04 AM
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Troll?
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Old 12-09-14, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Troll?
Why not humor?

Those strange funny sometimes insulting things are often heard from family , close friends, and colleagues at work

It was my mom who said the homeless sentence!

Last edited by choumichou; 12-09-14 at 07:13 AM.
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