No matter how much we love our chosen form of delusional escapism, there’s always things that grate, so I thought I’d write my own response to the Bike Snob’s list.
- Green lanes – okay, Green lane users. Now I know, they’re open to all. I know I don’t have to ride there. But the kind of vehicles on so-called green lanes really cheese me off because they seem so pointlessly intrusive to me. Sharing an unmade track with 4x4s and moto cross ‘adventurers’ just isn’t very enjoyable and always strikes me as particularly non-green. I do not understand the appeal of sitting in a four wheel drive bumping over rough ground, making a racket and generally turning the countryside to glop. As for moto cross, I’m sure it has it’s moments in a scaring-the-willies-out-of-you kind of way. But when that fun violently knackers the countryside and intimidates walkers, cyclists, horse riders and everyone else you have to ask yourself what you’re achieving.
- Cleaning my bike. After every ride, particularly during our mud-themed months I clean my bike. Partly, because Sod’s Law means you ‘ve picked up a slow puncture and repairing a mud caked wheel is no fun, partly because it keeps things running smoothly. But to do so means parking the bike, getting out the hose, walking back to turn on the hose, returning to scrub the bike with a brush for which the term fit-for-purpose never prompted its designer to ask ‘what purpose is that then?’, scraping fingers on spiteful gear teeth, walking back to turn off the hose, returning to put the hose away, returning to put the bike away, remembering to re-oil the chain a couple of hours later and so on. It’s a lot of faffage and walking backwards and forwards when all you want to do is get inside, have a hot shower and enjoy a large cup of tea with multiple biscuit options available.
- People who think you’re nuts to spend over £2.5K on a bike. Pause. Okay, maybe that is nuts. Right, people who say ‘I could get a car for that!’ People who just don’t understand that you enjoy riding round the countryside with good friends.
- New technology and gear. Well, we all know the problem here don’t we? Manufacturers just keep coming out with new stuff that let’s you go faster and further with more and more suspension travel which means we have to spend more and more to keep up. Us poor Mountain Bikers are being marketed to like it’s going out of fashion and we love it! Particularly Dave, Haha! No, really, this is about things we hate – we hate it! Except Dave, Haha! Saying that I’m looking for some new shoes and fancy some new clothes to go with my new Camelbak etc. etc. Hate it, definitely.
- Time. If there’s one thing I really hate it’s the lack of time I have for Mountain Biking. Even managing one mid-week ride and a weekend half day, I always feel guilty that my hobby takes up so much time, away from my family, especially when you consider all the pre and post ride faffing. Things are made worse when you’re stuck in the office looking out on perfect riding conditions (it happens sometimes!), knowing you could be getting a ride in without troubling anyone else.
Now I have to say, coming up with that list was actually more difficult than I thought!
So, what really bugs you?