What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

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531colin
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby 531colin » 18 May 2013, 4:17pm

How about "When were you last in the saddle?"

(the in the saddle should be said with a leer....)

whiskywheels
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby whiskywheels » 18 May 2013, 5:06pm

Given that there are almost 3 times more people killed or seriously injured in cars, than riding bikes each year, I'm sure you can think of something! :D

thirdcrank
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby thirdcrank » 18 May 2013, 5:24pm

I'll suggest there's nothing you can usefully say; on the contrary, engaging in the discussion can only serve to encourage this person.

IMO you are dealing with somebody in denial or, in posh terms "cognitive dissonance." His value system is based on the motor car: an expensive but ephemeral symbol of his status. The whole dream is built on contradictions. By arriving by bike and rejecting - if only by implication - his beliefs, you represent a threat, in the form of a reminder of reality.

He's trying to taunt you with the "dangers" of cycling, dangers which are largely caused by the drivers of motor vehicles. If you engage him in any sort of discussion, he'll probably point to convenience of being able to travel further and at greater speed, without recognising that a big part of that travel, especially the part that cannot easily done by bike, is only imposed by the assumption that everybody has a car. And that's probably the biggest problem for cyclists: a lot of people delude themselves in the same way as your colleague.

Having said all that, if you cannot resist, 531colin is on the right track. Ask him how he copes with his gut getting in the way.

(To declare an interest, I've held a driving licence since 1965 and I'm now the registered keeper of two cars.)

reohn2
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby reohn2 » 18 May 2013, 7:49pm

thirdcrank wrote:I'll suggest there's nothing you can usefully say; on the contrary, engaging in the discussion can only serve to encourage this person.

IMO you are dealing with somebody in denial or, in posh terms "cognitive dissonance." His value system is based on the motor car: an expensive but ephemeral symbol of his status. The whole dream is built on contradictions. By arriving by bike and rejecting - if only by implication - his beliefs, you represent a threat, in the form of a reminder of reality.

He's trying to taunt you with the "dangers" of cycling, dangers which are largely caused by the drivers of motor vehicles. If you engage him in any sort of discussion, he'll probably point to convenience of being able to travel further and at greater speed, without recognising that a big part of that travel, especially the part that cannot easily done by bike, is only imposed by the assumption that everybody has a car. And that's probably the biggest problem for cyclists: a lot of people delude themselves in the same way as your colleague.

Spot on
As I said,tell him to.......................... :)
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Merry_Wanderer
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby Merry_Wanderer » 18 May 2013, 8:36pm

I'd probably reply along the lines of "My hobby is making me fitter whilst yours is making you fatter. Guess who's going to die first?"

BTW - I used to get this taunt at work when I still went mountaineering in winter. It would go something like "Why should I pay taxes towards mountain rescue to pick up **** who want to kill themselves?" To which I replied as above suggestion. Funny how three of said colleagues died of heart disease / cancer / a stroke before they reached 60.... ;-)

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horizon
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby horizon » 18 May 2013, 9:29pm

AFAIK BMWs (or Bayerisher Mist Wagens as the Germans call them) record their average speed over time. I would be genuinely interested to know what your colleague's is and how that compares to average cycle speeds (over time) on here if such a calculation is available. AFAIK the likely average speed of a car is around 30 mph.

As regards accidents, perhaps ask him if he has ever killed someone ...
When the pestilence strikes from the East, go far and breathe the cold air deeply. Ignore the sage, stay not indoors. Ho Ri Zon 12th Century Chinese philosopher

Geriatrix
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby Geriatrix » 19 May 2013, 8:12am

thirdcrank wrote:I'll suggest there's nothing you can usefully say; on the contrary, engaging in the discussion can only serve to encourage this person.


Good advice - although I can't resist rising to the bait.

On the whole though I have experienced more positive than negative comments from colleagues. One of the most common is "I think you're mad but I admire you for it" which for me is always a foot in the door to argue the safety issue and for a bit of pro-cycling proselytising. And there's nothing that stops comments quicker than proselytizing, ask the Mormons & Jehovah witnesses, so perhaps that's a good strategy for the OP. Make yourself into a pain in the neck :)

To my pride I have converted one colleague who is now an all weather all season cyclist.
For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled - Richard Feynman

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simonineaston
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby simonineaston » 19 May 2013, 8:38am

Just blank him.
byyeee,
SiE

reohn2
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby reohn2 » 19 May 2013, 9:00am

One thing that always strikes me about anti cyclists is that they just don't understand it,it befuddles their narrow minded and short sighted world view.
They can never see the sheer joy of cycling.
From comments over the years it's clear to me that these none cyclists never get past first base because they simply can't bear the thought of seeing cars pass them with their occupants in comfort,a scene lowering them in the social order as they see it.
They've convinced themselves that it isn't doable from a social standpoint,let alone the cold,wet,and windy weather,not to mention the effort required that they console themselves of not having to go through.
Yet still before their bloodshot biased eyes people are doing it every day.
For an element of these saddo's the irritation is so extreme as to turn to outright hatred and open hostility,their sad and unfulfilled lives need a whipping boy,so where better than on the roads to play out that need,justifying their deplorable actions with the thought that cyclists shouldn't even be there.
They bolster up this belief by telling themselves these intruders on their roads are freeloaders not paying taxes,insurance,not wearing helmets or safety clothing and any number of other erroneous excuses for their erroneous thought patterns.
It's the class(bully) system at it's most overt and hostile,a system that the simplest and the most classless of transport modes has them beat and belittled,mind,body and spirit.

Just my 2d's worth :) .
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Si
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby Si » 19 May 2013, 9:41am

Making a cutting, witty riposte may make you feel better but it will do little to convince him that you are right, rather it will just further entrench his ideas. Likewise with just telling him to go forth and doo-dar. Of course, if there is a group of people around at the time, embarrassing him may stop doing him in the future, but will still enforce his anti-cycling feelings.

I'd be inclined to ask him,in a pleasant,friendly way why he feels the need to keep tirelessly repeating his ill-founded opinion on the dangers of cycling? If he manages to list any real reasons then just take them apart, still in a calm, friendly way, using logic and reason. Show genuine (good practice at faking sincerity) concern for his own state of health...invite him to come for a ride with you - tell him you'll sort out a bike for him, do all the planning, all he has to do is turn up.

Hopefully he'll either learn that every time he tries to have a go at you, he'll have his own failings brought to the fore - but in a friendly concerned way so he will look silly if he tries to complain about it; or he might even get worn down to the extent that he does try cycling!

As the saying goes, you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. And, at the end of the day, what we really want is to turn anti-cyclists into pro-cyclists, isn't it?

(can you tell that I've got my 'calm head' on, before I go out to man a cycling publicity stand later today?)

reohn2
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby reohn2 » 19 May 2013, 10:01am

Si
I wish I had your optimism.
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Si
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby Si » 19 May 2013, 10:04am

Well, it's always worth a try...if it fails you still have the alternative fall back option. However, if you do it the other way round then you are much less likely to succeed.

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Mick F
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby Mick F » 19 May 2013, 10:59am

reohn2 wrote:One thing that always strikes me about anti cyclists is that they just don't understand it,it befuddles their narrow minded and short sighted world view.
They can never see the sheer joy of cycling.
Exactly!

I was chatting to a chap the other day and we were in conversation with others regarding my cycling. The chap suggested that it's dangerous to cycle on the roads because of the traffic. I said he was "traffic" and I asked him that when he saw a cyclist if he put the cyclist in danger? He said no of course not. So I said, then what's dangerous? He just shook his head and didn't understand.

The rest of us continued to chat about my cycling and where I'd been and what I'd seen and how fit I was. :D
Mick F. Cornwall

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hubgearfreak
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby hubgearfreak » 19 May 2013, 11:15am

IrishBill76 wrote:It is so rare for this to happen it's barely worth mentioning..


"In England every year there are about 6,000 diabetes-related amputations" from http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-17270379

either i've misunderstood what you mean, or we have different definitions of 'rare'. i don't mean to offend - i'm genuinely puzzled.

TonyR
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Re: What's the best riposte to somebody who..........

Postby TonyR » 19 May 2013, 12:43pm

reohn2 wrote:One thing that always strikes me about anti cyclists is that they just don't understand it,it befuddles their narrow minded and short sighted world view.
They can never see the sheer joy of cycling.
From comments over the years it's clear to me that these none cyclists never get past first base because they simply can't bear the thought of seeing cars pass them with their occupants in comfort,a scene lowering them in the social order as they see it.
They've convinced themselves that it isn't doable from a social standpoint,let alone the cold,wet,and windy weather,not to mention the effort required that they console themselves of not having to go through.
Yet still before their bloodshot biased eyes people are doing it every day.
For an element of these saddo's the irritation is so extreme as to turn to outright hatred and open hostility,their sad and unfulfilled lives need a whipping boy,so where better than on the roads to play out that need,justifying their deplorable actions with the thought that cyclists shouldn't even be there.
They bolster up this belief by telling themselves these intruders on their roads are freeloaders not paying taxes,insurance,not wearing helmets or safety clothing and any number of other erroneous excuses for their erroneous thought patterns.
It's the class(bully) system at it's most overt and hostile,a system that the simplest and the most classless of transport modes has them beat and belittled,mind,body and spirit.

Just my 2d's worth :) .


Or it could be they have no interest in cycling just as I have no desire to go fishing. Doesn't mean that lots of people don't get a lot of enjoyment from fishing but for me I just don't get it (and I've tried it)