The Rule #5 Talk

Rik van Looy, The Emperor, proving that Steel is Real

Have a look around to see who you find occupying your immediate vicinity. Presently, I am surrounded by a pleasant-seeming bunch. Some are even going so far as to appear happy or at least not displeased; all of them are pale and none of them fit. My attention is drawn, however, to a a portly mustached gentleman who strode into the hotel lobby with an enormous degree of self confidence and who as such feels justified in wearing an ill-fitting t-shirt bearing a phrase which asserts that real men wear orange. While I have no reason to disagree with the assertion, I assume he is optimistic that through wearing said t-shirt, he will be mistaken for a “real man” and is not in fact attempting to disprove the point through contrast.

I’m not picking on this gent not because I’m harboring any sense of ill-will towards him, nor for the fact that he strode into the hotel lobby carrying a twelve pack of Yuengling Black and Tan. I’m picking on him mostly because I have come to understand that “real men” are capable of crushing things like soda cans and their opponents’ Will to Live, while from the looks of it, the only thing he’s crushed lately was a ham sandwich whose remnants I’m fairly certain I spotted on the front of his bright orange t-shirt.

Surprisingly, our Orange Hero isn’t even the most disappointing case in the room I’m occupying. The guy in the camouflage, knee-long shorts and flip-flops is an example at least two degrees worse; if he harbors hopes of blending in to anything – most of all foliage – I suggest he spend some time outside to brew himself up a tan that goes beyond TV Translucent (I’m not sure what the pantone value is for that). He should also try lifting his computer some time, to build muscle mass, rather than wheeling it about in a trolly. But worst of all by a considerable gap is the skinny-fat chap with carefully disheveled hair who is presently chastising the bartender – who is serving free drinks to hotel patrons – for not having his preferred brand of vodka on hand. If this guy took half the time he spent worrying about his hair and invested it in not worrying about his free drink, he’d be three-quarters less of a douche. (My dad would call this guy a zacht gekookt ei, or soft-boiled egg.)

All this to say that as a society we have, by and large, become soft. While I want to be careful not to paint too broadly with that brush as no one is to say what hardships people have been through, on balance we seem to expect to take more and to be asked to give less in return. Our ancestors worked harder than we did, in worse conditions, for less reward but found satisfaction in a job well done and an honest day’s work. Yet today, we are overly dependent on t-shirts to send a message about who we are rather than our actions. We fill our conversations with sentiments of entitlement and rights, when in fact we are entitled to nothing and we have the right only to the things we find within ourselves.

As Cyclists, however easy our lives may be, the bicycle brings us some degree of hardship and struggle. For many of us, our easy lives are what draw us to the bicycle in pursuit of a harder life. This is, of course, in stark contrast that to the riders who came before us, the legion of Fausto Coppi, Rik van Looy, and even the comparatively well-off Eddy Merckx who chose the bicycle as a means of escape from a harder life into an easier one. But nevertheless, it sets us appart. The lessons the bicycle teaches us can be applied to the rest of our lives, and may be used to guide the uninitiated.

Our pets go untrained because we are too busy, distracted, or stressed out to show them the discipline they crave. Our children scream as our dependence on secondary care blurs the boundary between parent and friend. Society’s BMI is pushed ever upward as our appetite for a meal grows inversely with our willingness to exercise. By and large, our dependence on the material is fueled by the immaterial.

No child is too young, no adult too old. This is the time to Obey the Rules, Lead by Example, and Guide the Uninitiated. But most of all, this is the time for us to set an example and have The Talk. The Rule #5 Talk. And remember what Will Fotheringham refers to as Rule #5.b: Eddy Never Complained.

VLVV.

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491 Replies to “The Rule #5 Talk”

  1. @mcsqueak

    @Marcus

    @frank

    Whilst you are an American with misplaced delusions of being Dutch (you really are just another dumb fuck American), face it, deep down you really wish you were Australian. Oh the lyrical you would wax about Aussie cyclists and their panache. But instead, you come up with shit reasons to dislike someone like Simon Gerrans.

    Ok, let’s not be silly now. No one except Minion actually wishes they were Australian.

    It seems to be a very important issue: wannabe Australians

  2. @frank

    A strong case could be made for Rabottini giving us the Rule #5 moment of the year (so far). After 150+km away, to latch on to J-Rod like that and still win the stage (Roddie doesn’t seem to have gifted the stage, either, definitely kept putting in the digs up to the end.)

    Turn on the sound and listen for the Italian commentator’s head to pop in excitement at the end. David Harmon’s head also almost popped.

    I see what you mean. Grandissimo!

  3. @versio

    @frank

    A strong case could be made for Rabottini giving us the Rule #5 moment of the year (so far). After 150+km away, to latch on to J-Rod like that and still win the stage (Roddie doesn’t seem to have gifted the stage, either, definitely kept putting in the digs up to the end.)

    Turn on the sound and listen for the Italian commentator’s head to pop in excitement at the end. David Harmon’s head also almost popped.

    I see what you mean. Grandissimo!

    (6:26) 2 riders coming in, announcer seems to say to both “Fuck-face!” “Fuck-face!”

  4. Thinking Sean Yates: During 50km ride to focus on better position. Discern over bar setup to rotate down with hoods and level out the drops. Realized that flat transition to the hoods is not agreeing with arms or wrist. And will get me lower — better. And I will get all this checked out with a real fit later.

  5. @Marcus
    Agreed – For me, McGee and Rogers are up there. McGee is subjective because I loved to see him ride and he was awesome on the track. Rogers 3 times TT Champ.
    Gerrans has won in all GTs and has a MSR. Still going strong, too.
    Cooke? Has a green jersey. Great? Not so much since then.

  6. @marko

    @versio
    Huh?

    Helping Frank’s request stack up posts in this thread. And you showed up and have not heard from you in awhile. And this response only helps to stack up more post. And while I am here, I’ll post an even more confused image.

  7. Got it. Lots of catching up around here. I was in the woods for a week and then traveled to and rode in a race this weekend. Its good to be back. Seems like peeps got their panties unwadded. Glad I missed that.

  8. @marko

    Got it. Lots of catching up around here. I was in the woods for a week and then traveled to and rode in a race this weekend. Its good to be back. Seems like peeps got their panties unwadded. Glad I missed that.

    How did the race go for yourself? Road race ??

  9. @Marcus

    @versio

    @frankIs it me, or is it much more motivating to chase down a rider rather than to stave riders off?

    Think it might be a question of relative levels of fatigue. The rider ahead will usually have spent a lot more of his pennies – and by definition, if you are chasing down a rider, you must be going at a faster speed than him – otherwise he is dropping you…

    At the same time once you’ve dropped someone there is a lot of motivation to keep them that way — can lead you to dig deeper than you might otherwise, to make it stick.

  10. @Nate
    Really is a feeling that once you “go” there is no turning back. You do have to fight once you start throwing punches.

  11. @versio
    A gravel race called the Almanzo 100. Very well organized and thought out and a very hard route. There were a lot of people suffering in 90 degree temps and 25+ mph winds yesterday. Wouldn’t have had it any other way.

  12. @marko

    @versio
    A gravel race called the Almanzo 100. Very well organized and thought out and a very hard route. There were a lot of people suffering in 90 degree temps and 25+ mph winds yesterday. Wouldn’t have had it any other way.

    Did you run 25mm or 27mm tyres? Any mishaps ??

  13. @versio

    @Nate
    Really is a feeling that once you “go” there is no turning back. You do have to fight once you start throwing punches.

    Exactly. Had that experience today, is why I’m saying it.

    @marko
    Very cool.

  14. @frank>Its all part of our foreplay and you know it.

    @ Scaler911
    As is Prison sex.

    This is why skim reading is bad.

    PS Mcsqueak – Impossible. I could try and assimilate, get the fake tan, buy a Holden, replace every vowel with an e, put a lifesize poster of Warney up on my bedroom wall, but I will never, ever ever ever understand the unwittingly homoerotic parade of AFL. Normally in televised sport during downtime, the cameramen spot the good looking ladies in the audience – in AFL, the cameramen focus on the players, the players, the players’ shorts, the players running, the players sniffing flowers and holding hands, then they follow the players into the changing rooms for the orgasmic singing and spraying of fluids. They need to get a fucking room or a girlfriend, the lot of them.

    (Sits back and waits. Apologies to genuine AFL fans unless your name starts with M and finished with arcus.)

  15. PS Oli welcome back. Can’t help get the feeling we’ve been trolled and haven’t recognised it yet. Substance over attention grabbing doesn’t always win out but it makes me glad when it does, especially since I need to maintain my links to the Wellominati now getting my wallet stolen I’m in convict country.

  16. @minion
    You could have moved to New South Wales or Queensland – most of them don’t get Aussie Rules either. But no, Minion the Boy Genius moved to Canberra.

    Since you are there, you need to learn to love Aussie Rules. Or you will continue to live a sad little existence.

    Take 1 minute and 40 seconds to watch this display of marking (ie. catching the football)

    Aussie Rules is a fucking great sport.

  17. @minion
    @brett
    Brett moved from Australia to NZ and I am the deranged one?

    Can’t tell which is worse – moving to NZ from Australia or moving from NZ to Australia and deciding to live in Canberra.

    Bet that all the problems of the world could have been solved if you two rocket scientists had stayed working in the same bike shop.

  18. @ Marcus
    “Minion the Boy Genius”

    From the horse’s mouth folks. I can snatch a compliment from anywhere.

  19. @Marcus

    That article should be evidence enough… I get to live in a country with less Kiwis and Aussies! (And better mountain biking than Canberra and better road riding than Melbourne.)

  20. Talking of Australians, chapeau to Robbie McEwen on retiring from his storied racing career. I remember him dominating the Tour of Wellington during his first year on the Giant-AIS National Team in 1995, and have enjoyed following his gutsy and combative racing ever since. Very cool.

  21. @Oli
    ACTUALLY didn’t Tosh beat him in a stage that went up Horokiwi or one of the hills in the Hutt? Could not shut him up every time you rode over that hill with him.

  22. @versio

    @frank
    Is it me, or is it much more motivating to chase down a rider rather than to stave riders off?

    Prey vs. Predator, non?

    On the other hand, climbing at the same speed and with equal amounts of pain, if I’m riding away from someone versus having someone in front of me (or with me), I feel better riding away. But thats just morale from feeling like you’re riding faster.

  23. @versio

    Last post “” feel like I’m taking crazy pills.

    I feel like you’re taking crazy pills, too. I sometimes wonder if, for a challenge, you type some of your posts in a different language and then use Google Translate to get them back to English.

  24. @frank

    @versio

    Last post “” feel like I’m taking crazy pills.

    I feel like you’re taking crazy pills, too. I sometimes wonder if, for a challenge, you type some of your posts in a different language and then use Google Translate to get them back to English.

    It was late and yesterday was crazy altogether.

  25. @frank

    @versio

    @frank
    Is it me, or is it much more motivating to chase down a rider rather than to stave riders off?

    Prey vs. Predator, non?

    On the other hand, climbing at the same speed and with equal amounts of pain, if I’m riding away from someone versus having someone in front of me (or with me), I feel better riding away. But thats just morale from feeling like you’re riding faster.

    Riders become infuriated when they keep looking over their shoulder to see me crawling back. And I am being fueled by the chase. When I overtake them (if I overtake them), I try to get a double-dose to put them on the Sword and attack. Turning the tables is very rewarding if it comes off right. But attack only after some tactical acting, (Luke) “Boy am I glad to see you!”

  26. @Marcus

    @minion
    You could have moved to New South Wales or Queensland – most of them don’t get Aussie Rules either. But no, Minion the Boy Genius moved to Canberra.

    Since you are there, you need to learn to love Aussie Rules. Or you will continue to live a sad little existence.

    Take 1 minute and 40 seconds to watch this display of marking (ie. catching the football)

    Aussie Rules is a fucking great sport.

    I hear the whistle blowing, which I assume is for some kind of violation. I’m guess the referee is angry that the guys didn’t hit eachother hard enough?

  27. @Marcus

    Bet that all the problems of the world could have been solved if you two rocket scientists had stayed working in the same bike shop.

    I wish I could give the badge to the whole lot of you for redeeming this thread, but it has to go to Marcus for a crescendo of insults that ended in this one. Brilliant.

  28. @minion

    I could try and assimilate…replace every vowel with an e

    That must be a real earth shaker, moving from a country where every vowel is an “i”…

  29. @frank

    @Marcus

    Bet that all the problems of the world could have been solved if you two rocket scientists had stayed working in the same bike shop.

    I wish I could give the badge to the whole lot of you for redeeming this thread, but it has to go to Marcus for a crescendo of insults that ended in this one. Brilliant.

    Yep, I laughed my ass off at that one too!

  30. I’m still waiting for Bretto to walk into a bar, where Marcus and his kids are chucking back pints…

  31. @frank

    @minion

    I could try and assimilate…replace every vowel with an e

    That must be a real earth shaker, moving from a country where every vowel is an “i”…

    Could be worse, I could sound like her, which I have to assume is what you all sound like…

  32. @frank
    They blow the whistle every time the ball is caught after being kicked (before it bounces). Makes for a cacophony of whistles around Melbourne on the weekends. Good sound.

    Thanks for the badge you Dutch tryhard. I didn’t know that Brett and Minion worked in the same bike shop but I guessed they did based on the following:
    1. I knew both of them worked in bike shops in NZ.
    2. I knew they didn’t work with Oli in his bike shop (who could?).
    3. New Zealand’s economy could only support two bike shops.

  33. I met an Oli this weekend:

    Tried to talk with him about Cycling, but all he wanted to do was this:

    Maybe it’s not our guy…

  34. @frank

    @versio

    @frank
    Is it me, or is it much more motivating to chase down a rider rather than to stave riders off?

    Prey vs. Predator, non?

    On the other hand, climbing at the same speed and with equal amounts of pain, if I’m riding away from someone versus having someone in front of me (or with me), I feel better riding away. But thats just morale from feeling like you’re riding faster.

    Yes, I feel better riding away from people too… However, it doesn’t feel all that great to smash yourself and turn around to find them comfortably sitting on your wheel.
    Happens occasionally, more so these days as I have never really got back to the form I had years ago after a few years off the bike. Thing is, my brain thinks I can still go that fast, so I am genuinely surprised when people come past.
    Ahhhh getting older. So much fun.

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