With The Rules being officially published in three languages (English English, American English, and soon Dutch) and now also being offered in a large full-color format by Rouleur, it is time for the Keepers to accept the reality that Rule #3 is perhaps the most important Rule of all and one which must be enforced vigilantly, even with the most experienced of Cyclists.
Rule Violations occur for many reasons: ignorance, boredom, or even trying to get a certain Dutch Keeper’s goat, but mostly violations happen because we don’t realize our limits of taste have shifted. Boundaries are slowly pushed and over time we grow accustomed to new ways of doing things. My own sock length is such an example, where my preference has slowly shifted from 3cm cuffs to 5cm. (I justify this by pointing out that we are more in symmetry with The Five by wearing a Vcm length of sock.) Some changes are healthy, but some changes foretell the coming apocalypse, and I’m afraid that if we do not return focus to Rule #3, all may be lost.
Keepers Tour was a revelation in this regard. Spending nine days riding with old and new friends alike, not to mention having the opportunity to see the Pros up close and personal makes one point perfectly clear: balance must be restored, and that those who are willing to be shown The Way can still be taught.
The V Signs of the Apocalypse:
- The Peloton appears to have been infected with a particularly virulent strain of Grizzly Adams Disease. Wages must be dropping or the price of admission into the doping pool must be up because the majority of the bunch appear to be moonlighting as 70’s-era porn stars to make a little extra cash. I’m looking at you, Luca. This has spread into the non-Pro ranks, and even a certain Kiwi Keeper is in violation.
- Johan Museeuw arrived at the Thursday Paris-Roubaix ride aboard a Specialized S-Works with – wait for it – disc brakes instead of his custom handmade Belgian Jaegher, citing a “battery problem”.
- A “Battery Problem” is now a legitimate excuse not to ride a custom handmade Belgian bicycle.
- Even after pointing out that the only way to make toe covers look good is by not wearing them, @asyax still appeared at our first ride wearing toe-cozies.
- The blatant violation of the Goldilocks Principle: @The Engine wore his shorts down to his knees and @Mickey routinely rode in stripper boots.
The mini-pump lashings appear to have temporarily corrected the situation @asyax, but I fear that with the coming winter in Oz he will soon relapse. @The Engine had to be shown how to put his shorts on properly on an almost daily basis. @Mickey abandoned the overshoes only to reveal similarly long socks. Like alcoholism, it appears all will always be struggling with this condition.
It isn’t easy, restoring order to the realm, and I shudder to think how many other undiagnosed cases we have around the world. But that’s what we’re here for: reuniting wandering Velominati with The Path, one at a time.