Summertime is such an amazing time of the year in North Jersey. Considering we now seem to go straight from winter to summer, we have to enjoy every moment of the humidity soaked day. The birds are chirping, the bees buzzing and even the traffic has died down as we head to our respective vacation destinations.
That’s not to say Bergen County Summer is perfect. There is one major problem: men in Spandex.
Summertime in BC has also become prime cycling time. Johnny and the boys meet at the bagel shop on Saturday morning. They have their bagels, don their headwear (safety first) and are ready for their daily schvitz. Next thing you know, the white-collar biker gangs are wreaking havoc on some of NJ’s most scenic roads.
Let us forget for a second the part where this local chapter of Hell’s Angels shows blatant disrespect for every motorist on the road, choosing not to acknowledge that cars are much larger and have the right of way. There’s also no need to mention that if my car hits your bike, I win, every single time. This isn’t even about that, though. This is about their fashion choices.
Gentlemen, your Saturday morning bike trip from Tenafly to Piermont, N.Y. is not the Tour de France. Lance Armstrong you are not, even if you (maybe) have more balls. So, please, for everyone’s sake, do not dress like him, unless you’re being paid to do so – I never wanted to buy stamps until I saw the U.S. Postal Service sponsor our Livestrong (and maybe cheat) cycling champion.
This isn’t a rule applying only to some men. I’m in no way discriminating. This goes out to all of you. I promise you; thin or large, muscular or scrawny, Spandex looks silly on you. If you do not want to believe me, and know that your friends won’t give you an honest answer about how ridiculous you look, just ask your children. They won’t lie to you.
The truth is, I really just don’t understand it. Racers wear Spandex to create the least friction against the air possible. The more aerodynamic a cyclist is, the faster he can race and the likelier he’ll beat other racers. You and your buddies are not racers. Your leisurely, or maybe even quick, bike strolls are just that, leisurely. I’m glad I don’t have to watch you slide your body into that suit, but I’m not so happy I have to watch you move in it.
Oh, but it’s a great form of exercise, you say? Wear a baggy shirt and gym shorts. The increased wind resistance will make you peddle harder, burning more calories. That way, you can fit into that sexy, slimming scuba gear we all love. We can’t wait to see the photos of your vacation. I promise.
Let me be even clearer. I love cycling. I have great friends who love cycling even more than I do (they, unfortunately, wear the Spandex, too). But this is about the greater good. Think of the children. The innocent little kids sitting in their little child seats when BOOM, they are instantly traumatized by the raucous pack of cyclists wearing bright and very ill-fitting Spandex.
How does a mother explain that to her child, talk down their fears and make sure that everything is OK? She can’t.
So, fellas, this summer mount those extremely tiny and uncomfortable seats wearing your cute little padded undies. Just, please, I beg you, don’t make us all have to see them.
By Brandon Goldstein