Modern day cycling has come a long way. In fact, sometimes it seems to have come so far that people almost seem to forget when and why it all started. As a means of transportation, as in getting from here to there in a fast, uncomplicated and sometimes joyful way. Then again, takin a brief look at cycling history I guess people have always been attached to things like design or style. And that aint no bad thing per se but I’d say compared to its practicality, the style and status aspect might be a little overrated. Cyclists can’t just cycle, you know? They gotta represent! Whether it’s the roadie representin his club, the dandy representin his retro style or the fixed gear gangsta representin his crew, they often wave their flag with such insistence they seem to overlook a little thing called understatement. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Have a look:
Dis ride here fine couple spells it out: UNDERSTATEMENT. They’ve probably been cycling all their life but I don’t see a single aspect that’s meant to push any kind of unnecessary gimmicks or style. Yet they encompass so many things a lot of cyclists would like to claim to be their own invention. Flashy retro bike in an urban environment? They have the real vintage tandem so don’t even try. Smart Copenhagen design baskets? Go spend your money, they’ll just be using the ones that were working perfectly for the last 50+ years. And they probably never ever made a big fuss about those things, let alone the style they feature naturally:
Keys nonchalantly hangin from your black pants, vintage wool sweater, 5panel hat, lumberjack style beard…Nope, all these things weren’t invented by messengers, you see? This fine couple probably didn’t invent them either but they’re not acting as if they did. They just swayed by and seemed to have a good time. Again, understatement. They were so real and down to earth that I remembered that moment what it’s all about, at least for me. Havin a good time ridin my bike and not having to worry about any unnecessary attachments.
It struck me right there when I took the pictures that the best thing about spotting them was imagining myself being their age and still be healthy enough to ride my bike. If the missus can bear with me until then and accompany me I’d probably consider myself a very lucky man. At least they looked quite happy and definitely relaxed.
I’ll try to keep that in mind next time a wannabe cycloboss gets in my face…