Expect The Unexpected

Unless you spend a lot of time with the Dutch, you probably don’t realize how awesome we are.

We can pretty much walk into any situation and immediately understand the landscape and explain to all the non-Dutch in the room precisely why they are inferior.   For the mathematically-minded, let me put it in equation form:

Dutch + Any Situation = Opinion Delivered with Arrogance and Condescension

This becomes interesting when the room contains various Dutchmen with differing “correct” opinions.  Under certain circumstances, anecdotal evidence suggests this can sometimes effect local weather patterns.

This is a long way of saying that, as a Dutchman, I get very used to being right all the time.  In fact, I’ve come to expect it, which makes it all the more shocking when it turns out I’ve made some kind of error.  Recently, I predicted that Cadel Evans would become the next Rainbow Turd.

Unless he has a change of heart for next season, it appears that Cadel has not only shaken the “Nearly-There” monkey off his back by winning the World Championships, but he has also managed to diverge from the pattern he set during his brief stints as race-leader of the Tour and Vuelta and made his Rainbow-clad racing debut in a remarkably classy kit, complete with black shorts.

Despite the fact that my prediction was seconded by Marko, it still comes as a shock to my system to realize I could have made a mistake.   That said, the possibility of him switching shorts over the winter notwithstanding, I’ve never been so glad to be wrong.


I am just now cracking my late-to-arrive Rouleur, Issue Fourteen.  One of the first articles to grab my attention is a piece on La Course en Tete.  It consists of a magnificent account of what this film means to cycling, as well as an interview with the director, Santoni, who had never seen a bike race.  He made the following observation:

I was interested by the myth of cycling.  When you watch a football game you see everything but with a bicycle race the winner is doing things people never see.  Sometimes the main event happens when no-one is there.  The effort is invisible.

I think anyone watching the live coverage  of the race might feel this way about Cadel’s World Championship win.  The footage showed him never at the front until the decisive moves started going.  Almost unnoticed, he was in a three-man move that peeled off the front.  Suddenly, the camera cuts to Evans, several meters off the front of the small group.  He looks back, see’s his gap, gets out of the saddle and accelerates.   It all looked oddly simple.  Easy, almost.  The cameras missed the suffering and instinct it took to get there, and whatever effort he made to get off the front.  We picked him up when he looked back and rode away from the race.

The effort was invisible.

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6 Replies to “Expect The Unexpected”

  1. Ahhhemm, Dutchy. I don’t seem to see where you predicted Cadel to be the next Rainbow Turd at all, let alone before I did.

    And not only can the Dutch “walk into an situation and explain the landscape” they’re also good at walking into light poles in Chamonix.

    All the best.

    The humble, passive-agressive Swede.

  2. @Marko
    OK. First of all, I didn’t walk into that light pole. I strode into it arrogantly and condescendingly.

    Second, let the record show Can’t Touch This, Comment #3:

    “…I just realized that, given the outfits he wears when he (temporarily) leads a Grand Tour, we are going to have to suffer white shorts for another season.”

    Third, let the record show comment #6 of the same post:

    “Cadel is the new Rainbow Turd. Just wait and see.”

    So, while I admit you were first to use the phrase, I clearly made the prediction of white shorts – and thereby making the prediction of “Rainbow Turdishness” – first.

    I have to say, though, that is a fine looking kit he’s wearing. Did he shed his aire of douchiness?

  3. So it seems we’re using competing, or shall I say dualistic, definitions of Rainbow Turd (a term I coined). I was predicting that Cadel will suffer humiliation in the rainbow world champion jersey much as Cippo did in getting shat out the back of a bunch sprint. You were predicting he would don some ugly-ass kit. So far, one of our predictions is incorrect. You’re right, that is a darn classy looking kit.

    Maybe he did shed a little douchiness. Where’s his little dog?

  4. OK. I agree. You were more wrong than me because you called it out explicitly. You win.

    I have to say, the “Rainbow Turd” thing you coined was a flash of brilliance. I keep forgetting a core concept here is that you get crapped out the back in your matching shit kit. Genius.

    Did Cadel shed the Specter of Douche? Only next season will tell. Ultimately, I think he’s a one-day guy who could win a Grand Tour when the stars align. Think of him as an Australian Gianni Bugno.

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