What Does Your Bike Say About You?
Campus is crawling with bikes, but what about their riders?
If you’ve ever had to dodge kamikaze cyclists like it’s Iwo Jima when walking through Crown Street Park, you’ll know that an increasing number of students are using bikes to get from A to B.
With a year-long bus pass costing over £300, it’s no surprise. Bikes are cheaper, often quicker, and could help you lose a bit of weight.
However, as soon as you buy a bike, you’re immediately making yourself into a certain stereotype.
Whether you’re a cyclist or not, The Tab is at hand to show you what your bike says about you.
You think up imaginary bands, and mention them when people ask what music you’re into. You have a moustache even when it’s not Movember, but are considering shaving because facial hair is getting too popular.
Even though you can now buy them in Argos and everyone and their Nan rides one, your fixie is still apparently the best way to say “fuck the mainstream”. You probably spend a lot of time hanging round the Ropewalks, taking the piss out of people who have different bikes to you and sipping soy lattes.
The Girlie Cruiser
You own a ton of Cath Kidston stuff, dress like a 1950s housewife and enjoy making cute cupcakes. You’ve blown half your student loan on vintage aprons and teapots, and have turned to your bike because you can’t afford bus fare. Out of all the cyclists on this list, you’re the most likely to be killed, purely because you’re more focused on reaching Zooey Deschanel levels of quirkiness than actually looking where you’re going.
All of this is doubly true if you have a basket on the front of your bike.
It’s even more true if the basket is made from wicker.
Seriously? Unless you’re 14 years old or actually planning on pulling some sick stunts on the way to Uni, you shouldn’t be riding a BMX. Maybe back in 1999 it would have been edgy and cool, but now you just look like you’ve stolen a bike from a kid.
They’re not the most comfortable bikes in the world either – you can either stand on the pedals and reach down for the handlebars, developing a posture as bad as Quasimodo’s in the process, or sit down and risk kneeing yourself in the chin while pedaling. Neither is a good look.
The Professional Roadie
The whole idea of ‘saving money’ by buying a bike doesn’t really apply to you, because you could have bought 10 bus passes with the money you spent on yours.
On the bright side, you’ll get to Uni really, really quickly. On the other hand, it’s all going to be in vain when you die before graduating because a 12-year old shanks you in Toxteth for your 3 grand bike.
The Mountain Bike
Favoured by Liverpool’s scally population, a huge-wheeled mountain bike with full suspension isn’t the most appropriate to get around paved city streets.
The suspension means you spring about all over the place, and they’re not the quickest bikes in the world. On the other hand, when you have to ride down a muddy hill that the fixie hipster faceplanted on, you’ll be laughing.
And then there’s me. Around the end of October last year, I was browsing eBay and came across a great find: a 80s Raleigh racing bike, for £70. Overcome by the realisation of how fucking cool I’d look steering into uni on this piece of stylish, yet practical, riding equipment, I, without hesitation, snapped it up. After 3 months, a metro and bus ride all the way to the Wirral and back to pick it up, 4 new inter-tubes, 2 new brake cables and a new tyre, I still haven’t been able to use it other than to take a pleasant saturday morning bike ride around Sefton Park on my own.