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Blueprint for The Rules

Blueprint for The Rules

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Every other Tuesday night, I put on my tweed jacket with the leather elbow patches, fill a Thermos with Earl Grey and drive the Rover 3500 to the designated home of one of my fellow members of our esteemed Book Group.

As a big fan of the brilliant British television show of the same name, I was hoping that the participants and scenarios would be of the same ilk (i.e Dutch and Swedish footballer’s girlfriends, transplanted Americans and frustrated housewives) but sadly instead it’s more the domain of 70 year old widows, accountants, drama students and science teachers (who also choose the Rover as their preferred mode of transport).

And much to my chagrin, most of them are there to actually read books and then discuss them. We each get to pick a book, so I was somewhat shocked yet pleasantly surprised when Doris (God bless her hand-darned socks) picked the ‘Whizzkids [guide to] Bikes’. As we each need to have a copy of the designated tome to peruse at our leisure over the impending fortnight, and suspecting that Doris had dug up her copy from beneath dozens of Dominion Posts and English Womens Weeklys circa 1956, I knew I (and the rest of the group) would have a difficult task to procure our very own ‘bibles of bike advice’.

Luckily for me, I happen to be befriended by tight-fisted, unimaginative and lazy friends, and it was to this end that Josh came up with a completely serendipitous Festivus gift for me. Yes, he had managed to find the Whizzkids manual! Actually, he didn’t so much as find it, but had it thrust upon him by a flatmate, who in turn had stumbled upon it in one of Wellington’s many second-hand thrift stores, no doubt buried beneath a pile of New Ideas of much the same era as Doris’.

Displaying a similar gift-giving torpor as I myself am wont to employ (I’d given him the copy of ‘Death Cults’ that K-Man had left behind back in 07, and which had been buried not under old newspapers, but old free Real Estate guides from the previous two years) he had simply passed it on to me while passing it off as something he had actively sought-out and put a lot of thought into. Ok, he did tell me the true circumstances of its acquisition and admitted to it being a “shit gift”.

But I saw it differently. In fact, I thought it was one of the best gifts I’d received in recent Festivus memory; much better than the tighty-whitey underwear from Mike, or the wind-up kangaroo that Josh had bestowed upon me last Festivus, which promptly broke after only one trip off the edge of the table. Plus I’d probably be the only member of my Book Group (besides Doris, of course) who would actually have had the good fortune to read it and would be able to critique its many helpful tips. After all, the WhizzKids professed that after reading their book, that I’d be able to “beat the experts at their own game”. And as I am supposed to be one of these so-called ‘experts’, I look forward to beating myself at my own game, something I’ve miserably failed to achieve despite decades of trying.

I can’t wait to peruse some of the other titles in the series too, as I’ve always harboured a burning desire to be a detective or a magician. Maybe Doris has them buried somewhere….

// Book Review // The Rules // The Works

  1. @The Pressure

    @harminator Isn’t it a reference to Steve Martin in ‘The Jerk’???

    Ding! 10 points to The Pressure. I had no idea. This site knows everything.

    Gianni I think Gonad pad is the technical term.

  2. This kid has what Navin R. Johnson has been looking for:  a “special purpose”.  Although, I still don’t know what that means, I certainly didn’t think it would look like that.

  3. Unrelated to this article but the picture of the kid reminded me that I saw this earlier. Its Niki Terstra’s 5 year old on the rollers:

  4. * Terpstra

  5. Awesome!

    Start ‘em young!

  6. Looks like I know what my son will be practicing when he wakes from his nap.

  7. @DCR

    Looks like I know what my son will be practicing when he wakes from his nap.

    +1

    We’ve been missing a trick.

  8. @ChopperKlein ” You don’t know shit from Shinola!”

  9. If you look just to the right of the guy in yellow at the top of the run up you can see my V-Cog!

  10. DOH!!  I mean left.

  11. Nice work, Cyclops!

    Just the drawing of one of those straight seat pillars with the side clamps makes me frown. Man, those things are fucking shite.

    Also, Whizzkids “Collecting Stamps” coming up in the series? Any Whizzkid should know it’s properly referred to as philately. Jeesh.

  12. @Cyclops

    If you look just to the right of the guy in yellow at the top of the run up you can see my V-Cog!

    Looks too dry to be a CX race.

  13. @frank

    It actually started raining later and I crashed (more like fell over) on a the grassy hairpins back in those trees in the background.

  14. @mcsqueak

    The only how-to guide I’ve ever needed:

    Everything old is new again…slightly modified versions of his helmet, sunglasses, long socks, neon kit and douchey hairstyle have all been seen in the pro peloton this year.

  15. I have the ball-peen hammer on my repair bench but I’m missing the 2×4.

    Oh, wait, the repair bench is made out of 2×4’s!  Brilliant!

  16. Someone needs to tell a whole fuckload of kids I see riding around town that their untaped bars, also lacking plugs, are for expert cyclists only, not twitchy fucksters with earbuds in and no brakes.

  17. @VeloVita

    @mcsqueak

    Everything old is new again…slightly modified versions of his helmet, sunglasses, long socks, neon kit and douchey hairstyle have all been seen in the pro peloton this year.

    That kid is the harbinger of the fututre from the past… bum bags are making a comeback via Enduro racing…

  18. @Gianni

    Did you pay one of your friends to write this? How much? Well, he or she did a great job.

    I hope the author of Wizzkids is dead or we have some copyright issues. I so don’t ever want to join a book club. I’d rather join fight club and be beaten half to death every other Sunday night.

    And you know the first rule of fight club, dont ya ??

  19. @Ron

    Someone needs to tell a whole fuckload of kids I see riding around town that their untaped bars, also lacking plugs, are for expert cyclists only, not twitchy fucksters with earbuds in and no brakes.

    May Merckx smite the fucksters with eternal hemroids.

    I am seriously disappointed with the message being taught to these young impressionable minds. Who is to say drop bars aren’t for “fun riding”

  20. I had this book.  Or probably still do somewhere.

  21. @the pressure “That man hates cans!”

  22. @ChopperKlein Classic!

  23. I have very strong memories of this book but I don’t own it; I must have borrowed it regualrly from the library as a childe.  That rule breaker of an image with the cape and odd mudguard things stands out clearly in my mind.

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