Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
drossall
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby drossall » 6 Sep 2018, 10:31pm

Extraordinary. We get plenty of reports of people, mostly adults, being told off for not wearing helmets. I can't remember any previous report of anyone, adult or child, being told off for wearing one.

I have brilliant memories of riding round there as a teenager, decades ago. A friend had a holiday home a couple of miles from Lake Vyrnwy. We would ride out from east Cheshire, stay there and then ride home after a few days away.

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downstream
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby downstream » 6 Sep 2018, 10:52pm

It's a shame that the OP's son had his ride affected by some negative comments. Back in my climbing days we used to call this kind of unwanted advice 'chaff' - you'd be halfway up some crag, minding your own business, when some know-all would start shouting unsolicited advice at you and criticising your choices. Back then, it never bothered me much, but now I don't think I could say the same; I think the OP did well to maintain a civilised manner with the chap. Perhaps people are trying to be helpful, but if it strays into criticism it can offend, and I would have been far from happy if someone took it upon himself to berate my child's innocent choices.

But to stay positive, it's been my experience that when out cycling with my daughter, we (or more particularly she) gets lots of nice comments, waves, and smiles. On a recent mini-cycle-camping tour, she was pedalling her trailerbike behind my tourer, and generally drivers passed wide and even sometimes gave us a thumbs-up, and overtaking cyclists shouted words of encouragement as we toiled up the hills. My daughter loved it.

Every now and then we all encounter some negativity, but to remain sane I try to assume that most people are mostly well-intentioned, even when experience might not bear this out. I think the important thing is not to take too much notice, and I hope the OP's son continues to wear his team kit with pride, whatever anyone else might think.

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bovlomov
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby bovlomov » 6 Sep 2018, 11:02pm

I'm another who has experienced strangers telling me and/or my children off for not wearing helmets. If I have time, I explain my reasoning (often to deaf ears). We laugh about it afterwards.

Approaching a child on his own and delivering a lecture is what's slightly odd. On the other hand, I quite like the idea of spouting random unsolicited opinions to young people. It reminds me of when a neighbour (in his 60s) offered me (in my mid teens) his unsolicited views on pregnant women who wear trousers. He thought it was a bad thing, as he believed the form of the pregnant woman was better represented in a dress. This wisdom has stayed with me.

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The utility cyclist
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby The utility cyclist » 7 Sep 2018, 1:05am

downstream wrote:It's a shame that the OP's son had his ride affected by some negative comments. Back in my climbing days we used to call this kind of unwanted advice 'chaff' - you'd be halfway up some crag, minding your own business, when some know-all would start shouting unsolicited advice at you and criticising your choices. Back then, it never bothered me much, but now I don't think I could say the same; I think the OP did well to maintain a civilised manner with the chap. Perhaps people are trying to be helpful, but if it strays into criticism it can offend, and I would have been far from happy if someone took it upon himself to berate my child's innocent choices.

But to stay positive, it's been my experience that when out cycling with my daughter, we (or more particularly she) gets lots of nice comments, waves, and smiles. On a recent mini-cycle-camping tour, she was pedalling her trailerbike behind my tourer, and generally drivers passed wide and even sometimes gave us a thumbs-up, and overtaking cyclists shouted words of encouragement as we toiled up the hills. My daughter loved it.

Every now and then we all encounter some negativity, but to remain sane I try to assume that most people are mostly well-intentioned, even when experience might not bear this out. I think the important thing is not to take too much notice, and I hope the OP's son continues to wear his team kit with pride, whatever anyone else might think.

Why do you construe what was said as "negative"?

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Cugel
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby Cugel » 7 Sep 2018, 11:50am

The utility cyclist wrote:
downstream wrote:It's a shame that the OP's son had his ride affected by some negative comments. Back in my climbing days we used to call this kind of unwanted advice 'chaff' - you'd be halfway up some crag, minding your own business, when some know-all would start shouting unsolicited advice at you and criticising your choices. Back then, it never bothered me much, but now I don't think I could say the same; I think the OP did well to maintain a civilised manner with the chap. Perhaps people are trying to be helpful, but if it strays into criticism it can offend, and I would have been far from happy if someone took it upon himself to berate my child's innocent choices.

But to stay positive, it's been my experience that when out cycling with my daughter, we (or more particularly she) gets lots of nice comments, waves, and smiles. On a recent mini-cycle-camping tour, she was pedalling her trailerbike behind my tourer, and generally drivers passed wide and even sometimes gave us a thumbs-up, and overtaking cyclists shouted words of encouragement as we toiled up the hills. My daughter loved it.

Every now and then we all encounter some negativity, but to remain sane I try to assume that most people are mostly well-intentioned, even when experience might not bear this out. I think the important thing is not to take too much notice, and I hope the OP's son continues to wear his team kit with pride, whatever anyone else might think.

Why do you construe what was said as "negative"?


In this queer age of solipsistic individualism, any kind of discomfort - particularly that of the dearly-held mental constructs known as "my opinions" - is regarded as a gross infringement of "my human rights" - negativity of the most frightening kind! Of course, all these things - solipsism, individualism, bald opinions (that are not "mine" but actually installed by cultural engines such as the mass media) and human rights are made-up-stuff: human-constructed metaphysics with, at best, a very tenuous connection to the real hard world.

But the objective of this peculiar modern behaviour is exactly to deny, repudiate and keep at arm's length that real hard world. In fact, we humans are rather good at doing so - the dark side of any civilisation, you might call it, in which we can get away with the most exotic and bizarre behaviours and beliefs, cocooned from nature by cultural blankeys of various kinds. Currently, individualism is heavily promoted because its important in supporting the con-tricks of consumer "choice", with the notion that opinions too are just a consumer choice that no one should question.

Sadly for the solipsists, the hard reality sometimes pokes them in a mental rib with events that are not part of their schema inscribing their comfortable illusions. This often makes them cry out in confusion, chagrin or even rage!

***
Of course, we all do it to a degree. After all, no one in a society is anything other than a construct of it's dominant themes. Still, it is possible to know you're deluded, which gives an opportunity to at least make the delusion a bit more resilient to reality-pokes by, for example, eschewing transparently stupid notions such as the idea that no one should ever criticise us or ours in case we feel discomfort or a lack of mental safety.

Cugel

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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby Vorpal » 7 Sep 2018, 12:46pm

While the sarcasm is somewhat humourous, I'm not sure this is the place for it.

A 10 year old accompanied by a parent is a bit different to an adult. Although I wouldn't expect to shield a 10 year old from all adverse experiences, it's clear that the OP doesn't either, or they wouldn't be out cycling with their child.

It's no different to proselytising, or going about telling people to eat vegetarian or something. It's not really the business of strangers in a cafe.

I would take it as a learning opportunity (for my child).

I don't think anyone is denying the 'real, hard world'
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

pete75
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby pete75 » 7 Sep 2018, 12:57pm

The utility cyclist wrote:Why do you construe what was said as "negative"?

The OP's son said "that man has just told me off for wearing my cycling kit and helmet". Sounds negative to me.

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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby Tangled Metal » 7 Sep 2018, 4:52pm

pete75 wrote:
The utility cyclist wrote:Why do you construe what was said as "negative"?

The OP's son said "that man has just told me off for wearing my cycling kit and helmet". Sounds negative to me.

+1
If it wasn't negative I doubt the OP would have posted about it.

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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby Cyril Haearn » 7 Sep 2018, 4:56pm

Some "cheeky" kiddies like to accost strangers, interrogate them, maybe even comment on whether they are wearing a h****t
+1!
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The utility cyclist
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby The utility cyclist » 7 Sep 2018, 7:16pm

pete75 wrote:
The utility cyclist wrote:Why do you construe what was said as "negative"?

The OP's son said "that man has just told me off for wearing my cycling kit and helmet". Sounds negative to me.

Ah, so it's not what was said in the sense of the advice (or maybe that is negative to you??) but the mere fact someone whom had the effrontery to speak to them and challenge their indoctrinated thinking and the strict rules set (regarding cycling) by the OP, is somewhat negative?

Remember the OP is very adamant his child wears a helmet at all times, even on a route that has no motorvehicles and is a nice steady ride and they reacted very angrily to the fact someone told his child it was okay to cycle without a helmet
ibbo68 wrote:"He also admitted to telling my son it was absolutely fine to ride without a helmet :evil:

Maybe if he'd have ignored the elderly gentleman and not made a big deal out of it, that he didn't embarrass his son by going over and having it out with them (yes that's very much the case for kids and their parents even if they don't admit it to their faces) it might not have had the after affect it did?
Has the OP considered that his reaction may well have made matters worse, we learn with age and experience that upping the anti not only rarely works to resolve the issue at hand, it can often end with a much worse outcome than simply walking away and making light of it.
If it was me, I'd be telling him that not all people hold the same views on all sort of things, same as when you're at school or with your mates, that sometimes what people say and do is a consequence of how they were informed (much as the OP is doing to their child). That when we listen to others alternate views we can learn from it, take something positive away from it, maybe even using it to re-enforce our beliefs, maybe, we may even change our thinking completely that actually has a positive change that was totally unexpected?

I just think the OP has reacted far worse than the child did tbh which made matters worse, that's because he was extremely angry that someone challenged his authority, his strict way of thinking regarding cycling helmets.

He should use what's been said here and the incident to learn about life, that people challenging one's channelled thinking is not a negative, that giving advise to a child even if you don't agree with it can be turned into a positive that encourages a child to deal with 'adult' situations better, to expand their thinking and how they interact with others in a wider social situation. As I said, he could have even used it to strengthen his firm belief in cycle helmets and passed that onto his child as well.

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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby Vorpal » 7 Sep 2018, 7:22pm

There's a discernable difference between presenting an alternate point of view and telling off a child.

p.s. I think that the OP said he was annoyed, which is also different from 'extremely angry'.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

pete75
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby pete75 » 7 Sep 2018, 9:10pm

The utility cyclist wrote:Maybe if he'd have ignored the elderly gentleman and not made a big deal out of it, that he didn't embarrass his son by going over and having it out with them (yes that's very much the case for kids and their parents even if they don't admit it to their faces) it might not have had the after affect it did?


Maybe if the elderly "gentleman" hadn't tried to force his views onto a child it wouldn't have had the effect it did. I don't wear a helmet and am not in favour of the things but am even less in favour of a prodnose who, unasked, tries to tell others what they should and shouldn't do.

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The utility cyclist
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby The utility cyclist » 7 Sep 2018, 9:21pm

Vorpal wrote:There's a discernable difference between presenting an alternate point of view and telling off a child.

p.s. I think that the OP said he was annoyed, which is also different from 'extremely angry'.

How do you know it was a 'telling off'? How does the OP, they interpreted what their child said that someone gave them a different view that they didn't have to wear all the gear like BW, why is that interpreted as a 'telling off'?

Different viewpoint, not telling you off is it?
Sorry but I don't agree that it's a telling off.

PS, the OP used the Evil or very mad icon, so yes, very angry.
Last edited by Graham on 8 Sep 2018, 9:48am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: A bit too far.

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Sum
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby Sum » 8 Sep 2018, 12:38pm

The 'Evil or Very Mad' emoticon was used by the OP whilst writing an account of the incident on this forum. It is not necessarily a reflection of the OP's state of mind at the time of the incident. Emoticons are subject to interpretation and basing a line of argument around the single use of an emoticon can be foolish, particularly when you ignore the fact that the OP goes on to write "but it was all quite calm with no raised voices" which clarifies the matter.

How do I know it was a telling off? Well, noting that the OP drew his conclusions after calmly discussing the matter with his son and the stranger, then I could chose to take their word for it as I don't have any reason to think they are mistaken. However I can't claim to know for certain because I wasn't there and neither was you, but that hasn't stopped you from posting lengthy tirades about the matter and jumping to conclusions. A more reasonable approach would be to politely ask the OP to elaborate first.

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Cugel
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Re: Interfering stranger lecturing my son about bike clothing

Postby Cugel » 8 Sep 2018, 3:15pm

Sum wrote:The 'Evil or Very Mad' emoticon was used by the OP whilst writing an account of the incident on this forum. It is not necessarily a reflection of the OP's state of mind at the time of the incident. Emoticons are subject to interpretation and basing a line of argument around the single use of an emoticon can be foolish, particularly when you ignore the fact that the OP goes on to write "but it was all quite calm with no raised voices" which clarifies the matter.

How do I know it was a telling off? Well, noting that the OP drew his conclusions after calmly discussing the matter with his son and the stranger, then I could chose to take their word for it as I don't have any reason to think they are mistaken. However I can't claim to know for certain because I wasn't there and neither was you, but that hasn't stopped you from posting lengthy tirades about the matter and jumping to conclusions. A more reasonable approach would be to politely ask the OP to elaborate first.


When I were a lad, 164 years ago, I was told off about 23 times a day (on average, not counting mere frowns) by all sorts of adults. The tellings were not usually a gentle affair but sometimes accompanied by an emphasis in the form of a blow to my person. The subject matter of the telling-offs ranged from the serious (using a penny banger to blow the mud from a drain cover handle indent all over a passer-by's frock) to the ridiculous (wearing brown shoes instead of black ones to school on a Tuesday).

Did it do me any harm, eh, eh!!? (Twitch-twitch). Of course not! No more than being locked in the cupboard under the stairs with the bogeyman for an hour, for being cheeky to Aunty Elvira.

Modern kids. Cuh!

Cugel, only lightly damaged around the psycho-edges.