Ragtime Cyclist column

Cyclists take advantage of the good weather.
Cyclists take advantage of the good weather.
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Some love it and see it as a matter of pride to get out on the bike and battle the elements, and some hate it but get out and ride anyway, in an attempt to maintain the hardman/woman façade.

But there are others who refuse to even consider winter cycling as an acceptable activity.

On November 1 every year these people grease and polish the bike, pack it away in the shed, and refuse to go anywhere near it until March the next year – instead dabbling in warm, cosy, indoor hobbies.

To drag yourself out for a ride in the depths of winter, particularly after work on a dark winter evening, you need motivation, decent winter kit, a small streak of masochism, and ideally a lack of anything better to do.

The two-out-of-three rule should also be applied.

If the weather is any two of wet, windy or cold, get your kit on and get yourself out for a ride.

So, wet and windy is fine as long as there isn’t a nip in the air, but wet, windy and cold is a step too far.

Wet and cold is riding weather, as long as the wind doesn’t get up and so on.

You get the idea.

Of course, any one of the three on its own is simply not bad weather.

There will be some who ignore the rule and make a point of inviting everyone out for a ride when the weather conditions are a clear three out of three.

Join in this macho parade if you must, but beware that this grasping need to prove your bad weather credentials may be viewed by your cycling companions as a sign of inherent insecurity, and an attempt to cover up deeper inadequacies.

The beauty of the two out of three rule is that we all know where we stand.

If you duck a ride you are either well within your rights, or you are inherently lazy and are risking the wrath of your peers; it’s a clear, transparent system.

You know if it’s cold, you know if it’s windy, and we all know if it’s wet.

The only thing you need to consider is whether it’s a three out of three kind of night.

If it is, you may be excused.