WSJ on Cycle Chic and City Bikes

Today’s Wall Street Journal has an article on cycle chic and city bikes.

Read the article

14 Responses to “WSJ on Cycle Chic and City Bikes”

  • Stephen says:

    Hate to stereotype, but a female WSJ reporter quits a mere half-mile from home? And probably because some guy whined about titanium being “light?” Were the tires even inflated properly?

    And no, I didn’t read the comments (if there were any). WSJ readers can be quite vicious of anything that doesn’t reek of mindless consumption.

  • Andrew says:

    A little bit of a goofy article for me, but I’ve never been able to relate to the fashionista set in general, so I don’t see why our differing attitudes would be any closer when it comes to bikes. I can’t wait for the day that cyclists aren’t divided up into tribes (roadie, bike chic, retrogrouch, etc…) and more people stop defining themselves by their choice of vehicle, how they use them, or even the fact that they use them at all.

    But hey – said it before and I’ll say it again – whatever it takes to get people moving under their own power…

  • Andrew says:

    @ Stephen – Funny, I didn’t read them either, but thought the article itself _was_ heavily geared towards consumption…

  • Pete says:

    The BikeSnob himself has his usual, apt, takedown:
    http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com/2010/07/parroting-continual-conversations-with.html

    I think the crux of the matter is that riding a bicycle in the US, if you are over 14 years old, remains “outside” the mainstream, and I think people who do things outside the mainstream tend to want to make a club, or movement, or statement out of it, if for no other reason than to gain support from the company like minded other folks.
    This blog is a great example. We all advocate making bikes a normal part of everyday activity, but we do it by fetishizing the equipment to death! (ably abetted by Alan’s amazing photography)
    The web site Copenhagenize had a good take on it. In Copenhagen and Amsterdam, bikes are like vacuum cleaners. Nobody talks about them, there are no special clothes required to operate them, and bikes exist to those folks much like vacuum cleaners do to Americans (and the Dutch and Danish, too, I’d imagine.)
    We are making great progress towards mainstreaming cycling in the US. Until we get to the point where bicycling=vacuuming, I for one don’t mind if someone rides for tweed, for speed, or for need.

  • Alan says:

    @Pete

    Well said, Pete!

    Alan

  • Rick says:

    @Pete: “ride(s) for tweed, for speed, or for need”!

    Can I steal that phrase? Please? :-))

    P.S.: Just found this great video about Amsterdam–I love it:

  • Don says:

    @ Pete, that is bar none the most apt description I have read to date.

  • Pete says:

    Rick-
    Free use license granted!

  • Buck-50 says:

    BikesnobNYC’s comments on this article were priceless…

    snip
    Whereas some cultures might find the concept of simply hopping astride a bicycle and riding it in regular clothing so simple as to not even warrant discussion (much less additional purchases or a newspaper article), here in America we need an attitude, a philosophy, a style–and, most importantly, a bunch of new stuff we can buy.
    snip

    and…

    snip
    For some reason it’s okay to write about, say, minivans without once mentioning Formula 1 or flame-retardant suits, but an article about everyday cycling has to include plenty of mentions of “handlebars curled low like a ram’s horns,” “seats so hard that people wore foam-padded bike shorts,” and looking “like a refugee from the Tour de France.”
    snip.

  • Moopheus says:

    “a close-to-the-ground urban adventure….Being near to the ground allowed me to discover several new shops and restaurants along the way”

    Uh…was she riding a recumbent? Is her normal ride a Unimog? Just how relaxed is the Electra?

  • Rick says:

    Thanks, Pete! :-))

  • Lovely Bicycle! says:

    Moopheus – could be that she normally drives an SUV, which would place her especially high off the ground.

  • in which there is some ranting « 1 girl + 2 wheels says:

    [...] to all your kind links yesterday (and a heads-up from Rick) I did not miss out on the “Biker  Chic” article from WSJ. [...]

  • Adrienne says:

    That. Was. The. Most. STUPID. Article. Ever.

    Titanium chainguards?

 
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