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The Tenth Commandment for the Cycling Enthusiast:  Thou Shalt not Covet Thy Neighbor’s Bike


I have a very nice bicycle.  In the group I ride, it’s middle of the road at best.

However, it is mine, it is paid for, and it is absolutely the best I could afford.

My bike is good enough, I am fast enough, I am strong enough to be of use to my group…. and I am not willing to ask my wife and children to sacrifice anything so that I might have a different bike.  I do not compare my self-worth to that of others.  I do not compare what I have to what others have because I don’t know what other people had to sacrifice to get what they have.

I am not willing to sacrifice the happiness of my family so I can have a nicer bicycle because doing so would be stupid.

I must always be mindful never to be drawn into the “keeping up with the Jones’es” trap.  My last name isn’t Jones anyway.

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5 Comments

  1. Well said! Good reminder. The grass is never greener…

  2. […] Source: The Tenth Commandment for the Cycling Enthusiast:  Thou Shalt not Covet Thy Neighbor’s Bike […]

  3. Brent says:

    “My bike is good enough, I am fast enough, I am strong enough to be of use to my group…. ”

    This sounds like the old “Stuart Smalley” comedy routine from Saturday Night Live many years ago, where neurotic Stuart repeats really lame mantras to boost his self esteem.

    But seriously, this is good advice. I live in an area where the wealth is obscene. My son went to school with perhaps a dozen kids whose dads owned private jets… and two of those dads needed the private jets to get to the games of the major league professional sports teams they owned. The only way to stay sane in that circumstance is to live your own life and do what works for you, ignoring everyone else…

    I learned in AA meetings that gratitude for what you have will make you happy (and keep you sober). So I don’t get riled up when people in my bike club show up with the newest Trek Madone 9.9 with the custom Project One paint or the S-Works Venge ViAS e-Tap. Given the demographics of my area, I am pretty confident that nobody’s kids missed out on a shot at college so mom or dad could buy that bike.

    Instead, I just smile quietly to myself and buy last year’s wonder-bike from those folks at 25 cents on the dollar — that’s what I did with my mountain bike, which was custom-built and was used for a year… My shop very discreetly handles consignments of high-end used bikes that they quietly invite their best customers to buy. If you’re one of the customers they like, you may get taken upstairs to see one of the small number of really cherry used bikes they handle.

    I got the mountain bike (an S-Works Enduro with even higher-end components than the standard Specialized build) with only about 300 miles on it and sporting just one small scratch on the frame, for about 1/3 of the retail price. I’m a very happy camper because the bike is so much better than I will ever be that I’m not likely to grow out of it. Sucking up my pride and taking advantage of the situation instead of envying people has made me much happier.

    • bgddyjim says:

      Well thank you for that, Brent. You caught me at a really bad time for the cheap shot about the mantras and I really don’t have the patience to explain myself right now. I’m just going to let it go.

  4. Sandra says:

    Exactly. I never have been one to compare myself to others, at least on a bike. I would lose *every freaking time*. Glad I don’t care–I just get what makes me happy!

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