More Money Than Sense…

… it’s not just for the uneducated anymore.

A few notes to start today’s post: First I want to say that you may agree with some of the villain’s thoughts and opinions in this story. That’s fine, it doesn’t change the fact that you’re both wrong.

I also want to say that I’m sorry about all the cycling related posts lately but well, I’ve been riding my bike a lot and reading a lot of this blog and I’m harboring a minor obsession which means that’s what I’m thinking about which means that’s what I post about. [Mostly lately I’m thinking about how much my bike sucks and how much I wish I had the money to upgrade.] But if you’re sick of all the bike talk don’t despair, before too long it will cool down and the snow will start flying and my bicycle will go back to it’s completely neglected in the carport status and I’ll pick up a new obsession.)

At work the other day I happened upon two of my co-workers chatting about bikes. One of them, we’ll call him Dr. New Boobs (because he’s a plastic surgeon [yes, I work at a children’s hospital, no, we don’t do boob jobs. But he also works out of a surgical center where they do.]) was excitedly telling the other one, we’ll call her Whitney (because her name is Whitney) about the new bike he’s getting. He’s getting a top of the line road bike. (You’ll notice, if you follow the link, that there are no prices listed for the frames shown. This in one case where the old adage “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it” holds true. But since I wasn’t asking so that I could buy it, I looked around a little more and discovered that the frame costs about $5000. And then you need to buy wheels and gears and a fork and handlebars and…)

Except Dr. New Boobs was conflicted, “should I just get it now or wait 3 months until next year’s model comes out?”

“Are you riding at a level that you would be able to tell the difference between the two models? ” I asked.

“They’re the same” I was told “next years model is just a different color.”

Whitney told him he should wait.

I banged my head against the wall.

Then, as one would expect, talk turned to other things bike related.

Dr. New Boobs told us about how he thinks that lycra looks ridiculous and he’ll never wear it. We explained that the lycra offered some padding. He continued to be insistent, he was not going to be wearing lycra. Now to be fair, I don’t wear lycra when I ride. But well, have you heard about my bike? It’s a piece of crap, you can’t wear lycra on a bike like that. (Actually,you can and I would. If I could afford it.) On a bike like the one Dr. New Boobs is buying however… I believe that lycra is a requirement. (I understand that this is a subject on which a lot of you agree with Dr. New Boobs, I get that. I do. But let me put it like this, not wearing lycra while riding a top of the line road bike, even if you’re just riding the thing to get some exercise as is Dr. New Boob’s stated intention, is a little bit like swimming laps in a t-shirt and shorts. It can be done, but it’s ridiculous.)

The talk turned to clip-in pedals. Dr. New Boobs doesn’t want them. Now I understand a healthy fear of clip-ins. I have one myself (although I also have a demonstrable, and frequently demonstrated, lack of all things coordination [gross motor, eye-hand, etc.]) and I’m quite sure that when and if the time comes that I scrape enough money together to upgrade to a bike worth the same as the average 13 year-old’s cell phone I’ll fall over with some amount of regularity. That doesn’t change the fact that you can’t put platform pedals on a Time NXR Instinct. I believe that he understood that, he just didn’t like it.

Then we moved on to seats. I’ll spare you the pain of this conversation; suffice it to say that he wants the most cushioned seat that he can get away with. (I think he’d put a banana seat on the thing if he could.) (Again, I know this is where I lose a lot of you, that’s fine. Except that you also have to understand that it’s not always about the padding or even the size of the seat. A seat with very little padding, if molded correctly for your underside can be very comfortable and not matter how much padding you put on a badly fitting seat, it’s never going to be comfortable.)

At this point we again mentioned the padding in bike shorts. Whitney declared that she didn’t always wear hers but that if she was going on a longer ride she would.

“What do you mean by a long ride?” he asked.

Whitney shrugged, “thirty miles.”

(Thirty miles is really not that long of a ride. For serious cyclists it’s hardly even a warm-up, and even for a not very serious cyclist it’s not too big of a deal. I rode about 25 yesterday and that was in addition to working for 12 hours.)

Dr. New Boobs didn’t pause to consider, he didn’t even miss a beat. “Oh, I’m never going to ride thirty miles.” He said.

He’s buying a bike worth more than my car and he’s only going to take it around the block.

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9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kristina P.
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 09:39:09

    30 miles?!? I would fall over at one.

    Sure, but would you pay $7000 to do it? -Al

  2. bythelbs
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 10:14:02

    Yeah, what a lamewad.

  3. Jillybean
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 10:35:48

    Thirty miles? Isn’t that why we have cars?

  4. cheryl
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 10:55:22

    LAME. Seriously, that’s lame. I’m currently searching for a very nice bike trailer to put my kids in to hook to the back of my rusty 15 year old bike, but the biggest requirement is “how much will I use this versus the cost ratio?” or some intelligent form of this sentence. You know what I mean. In other words, if I’m going to use it to bike off-road every day for dozens of miles, then I’ll go with the one that will perform the best –the expensive one, right? But I’m not. I’m going to ride to the park, to the school, around the block, maybe Walmart or something (not that I shop at Walmart or anything), so I”m going to go with something cheaper. A LOT cheaper.

    People who spend their money just because they can are idiots. Sorry, but it’s true. I can count on ten hands how many people he could have fed with the money he’s gonna spend on that bike. Blah!

  5. Julie
    Sep 08, 2010 @ 18:06:03

    Ridiculous. And that’s coming from a cyclist’s (well, that term will be used loosely here) wife. Stanton owns a very nice bike, but darn it, he uses it the way it’s supposed to be used (when he gets around to using it).

    Also, stretchy pants make all the difference.

  6. Flipflopmama
    Sep 09, 2010 @ 04:50:20

    People like that drive me crazy.

  7. Melanie J
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 23:38:56

    Oooooof.

  8. LisAway
    Sep 13, 2010 @ 23:47:33

    Then, oh YES, he should definitely wait for the new color. Funny he would even consider getting the old (current) model. Maybe he can buy some matching polo shirts to wear while he rides it.

  9. Julie
    Sep 15, 2010 @ 10:27:08

    This post was so awesome I was still thinking about it today. I’ve got to forward it to my husband because my retelling will do this story no justice.

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