Class systems aren’t just for England. They are alive and well in Canadian society too. The Lo Fidelity Bicycle Club has made class their first reason why people in the UK don’t cycle. But I submit that the UK cannot bogart that excuse for themselves. No, class is something that prevents people in Canada from taking la bicyclette to and fro as well.
In Canada, we hate to tell our peers how much we make, but we love to show how much stuff we have. Bicycles don’t get that message out effectively. They are small, hide in the garage, and really top-shelf bikes are not obvious to the untrained eye.
Also, travelling by bicycle has some social stigma attached. Not because it’s slow, or crowded like the bus. But because it requires physical exercise. For the wealthy, exercise should only occur within the confines of a specifically designed state-of-the-art facility. Preferably one with high fees to reduce access for the masses.
If you’re stuck on biking like I am, here are a few ways that cyclists try to escape the skid row of the commuting world.
- They cycle chic, dressing in great designer clothes for their commute. It’s the brute force method of convincing the outside world that you don’t have to bike. You could bike back home and get the SUV anytime. If you “dress up” before you ride your bike, then you fall into this category.
- They cycle sporty, clad in all lycra, expensive sunglasses and bikes that cost a significant portion of a months wage. This is a more clever solution to the class problem of cycling because you’re convincing people that your cycling has no practical usage and is therefore worthy of higher caliber person.
- They cycle with a backpack full of books and pull off a university student look. You have to grow hipster facial hair and wear those full face sunglasses. Students aren’t subject to the same rules of transportation class because they don’t make money. This one is limited term though, eventually, we all stop looking 21.
Great, some things that help improve your stature on the roadway. Here are some common mistakes that will drop your social status like a lead balloon.
- Do not carry a case of beer in the pannier rack rat trap. Apparently, this social status faux-pas does not extend to carrying wine on a bicycle in the water bottle holder.
- Upturned drop bars are not classy. It shows that you really wanted an comfortable and expensive commuter, maybe even imported from Europe, but couldn’t afford it.
- Travelling at high speed makes it look like you have some place to go. That’s bad and you should avoid moving fast unless you are clad in the finest Lycra.
Avoid the pitfalls of commuter classism by reading up on these rules of class membership. But FFS, do not make a mistake like wearing your everyday clothes! It might be convenient and comfortable, but you could be mistaken for a prole.