The question may be asked, and fairly answered: Am I a bike snob?
I do love my bikes. My race bike is coolest in my stable (rivaled only by my wife’s race bike), my mountain bike matches my race bike and my rain bike will be painted this summer to match as well (though I’m going way cooler than just simple black and red). My helmet matches, most of my clothing matches, my wheels match, even my pedals match on the race bike. My socks are the proper length (though I do go with 3″ above the ankle, not the 5″ because I think the long socks look goofy – sorry), my sunglass arms always go over my helmet straps, my tire stamps match up with my valves… Heck, even my computer matches my bike. When it comes to my stuff, I am meticulous about looking good and making certain I ride competently.
When it comes to my bikes, I’m also very particular about what I ride on the road – carbon fiber all the way. Even my nasty weather bike has a composite frame. The mountain bike is aluminum, sure, but I only ride that a few times a year – I don’t have a need (or desire) for a $3,000 mountain bike. Does the choice to ride a carbon fiber frame make one a snob though?
Alas, to an extent, I could be seen as such. As far as I’m concerned about what I ride, I am very particular and because of that fact, the leap for the poorly informed could be that I am a snob… Let’s look at the definition of snob so we can all get an idea of where I’m coming from on this little slight of word – this trick in upending the English language:
- a person who believes that their tastes in a particular area are superior to those of other people.
So, am I, well… That? Not even close, though I do have a particular disdain for those who ride a Time Trial bike in a group setting. I won’t go anywhere near them until (and unless) they prove themselves competent on such a bike within the group. That’s not snobby though, that’s self-preservation! How about what other people ride? This being an honest program, I can say with utter certainty that I could not possibly care less about what somebody else chooses to ride. I don’t look down my nose at anyone, not even the “I lost my license because I got a drunk driving ticket” cyclist. Hell, anyone who’s read more than three posts on this blog knows I can relate to that guy… If you missed it, the name of my blog is Fit Recovery – that “recovery” part isn’t a river in Egypt.
If that wasn’t enough, then we have to look at the idea that I would have to believe that my tastes are superior to others… That excludes me, incontrovertibly. While I may not understand one’s choice, that’s a far cry from believing my choice or “tastes” are superior.
Being a snob boils down to one simple thing: How one treats others. Just because one chooses to ride nice bikes and wear matching apparel, a snob, this does not one make.
I believe, rather than worrying about who is or is not a “snob”, it is far more important that I do my part to make the sport I love, attractive. Being a dick about how people choose to participate would probably counter that most excellent ideal.