It’s not been a good week for cycling. Last week, I went out on my bike only to turn around after 2 miles with a bad knee, and I haven’t really been out since. Google, in their infinite wisdom have taken a disliking to cycling info, decreasing search results. I found a biography of Eddy Merckx so low, it was under the 15th different option to buy a book online. I was annoyed so deleted the post, and moved it to my biography site, which is strangely doing quite well. Perhaps, when Google say they don’t want boring duplicate content, they didn’t mean you should start making jokes at the expense of famous Americans, even if you do disguise it with semi-antiquarian old English.
On the positive side, an investigation into the state of cycling facilities, has found, on average, the government spend about £1-£2 per person in the UK. This paltry sum has also been found to discourage anyone cycling in the first place. Which, in government circles is widely believe to make life easier all round.
At least, we can rely on the local council. The freedom of information act, found that my local Oxfordshire county council spend 0.2% of their small transport budget on cycling. It brings a whole new dimension to the game, where does all the money go?
Can you spot the 0.2% of the transport budget?
Gov, can you spare any change for a pot of green cycle lane paint?
Maybe, with the Welfare state reaching a total of £200 bn the solution is to campaign for a new welfare benefit for cyclists. After all, we are a disadvantaged social group with a pressing economic justification for subsidy. If the money isn’t there, we could just tax a few multinationals who fiddle their taxes from Bermuda. Google have lots of cash lying around in the Bermuda Triangle or so I here on the old t’internet.
I propose the cycling benefit be given to anyone who can prove they don’t drive to work, but rely on old fashioned pedalling.
If nothing else, it will go down well with the Daily Mail, who have always been strong advocates of preventative exercise rather than expensive health care for diseases of obesity.
My only cycling the past few days, has been pottering into town as a good old fashioned commuter. Occasionally letting rip across Magdalen Bridge, to test the old knee. I can still beat a few battered old mountain bike riders, which is all good news.
The other slightly irritating thing is that when cycling into town on a rather gammy leg, I can’t stop singing ‘I want to ride my bicycle‘
- meaning I want to ride my bicycle properly – i.e. at 30mph on a dual carriageway, unencumbered by all these traffic lights, pedestrian crossing, taxis doing u-turns in the middle of the road, and those 20mph speed limit things (which on a serious note are very good for urban traffic).
BTW: Great lyrics: “I want to ride my bicycle” though I don’t know the second line, so I find myself just singing ‘ I want to ride my bicycle’ I’ve got a feeling the song doesn’t get any better, and I don’t really want to look it up and be discouraged.
To be honest, how do you improve on ‘I want to ride my bicycle?’anyway?
Well, as they say down the trenches, chin up old boy, and once more unto the mixed modes of transport, that is British roads.