Tuesday, November 23, 2010


I just had a "nice" ride tonight. Nice people, relaxed pace, nice time.

I'm not so sure about mountain biking being nice. At its best, it should be about fire in your belly, blood pounding in your head, and a dance through the trail. Or, it should be about epic places and worn out legs pushing worn out tyres around on a trail that goes to the horizon.

But nice seems like a hobby, not a passion. Nice has its place, but doesn't scratch the itch.


Andrew said...

I think all cyclists should cherish nice - sure, groups can be slower than you might want to go but not always. Nice groups, nice races, nice endurance events provide the bedrock for all the endorphin hounds to scramble over.Nice happens when all the individual passions come together in mutual enthusiasm.
Epic seems to happen when the marketing dept gets busy - see Rapha and The Privateer. The focus is all interior and masochist and sales. I'm as prone as the next rider to see my little rides as somewhat Homeric and I love to come through fatigue, adverse weather and many miles to ... well, a nice shower and a nice bowl of granola.
I can't stop the ad people hijacking epic, fire and passion to sell the latest stuff but it seems to promote indivduation and devalue the collective. So I say we should celebrate nice - here's to a lifetime of nice riding with like minded people, sometimes together, sometimes on your own.

Aidan said...

I know where you're coming from, Andrew. Nice is good for its own sake, but it's not the same as the passion and the fury. They're not mutually exclusive in one's life - in fact they work well together, but they are mutually exclusive within a single ride.

Sometimes I need I nice ride, but I think last night I needed a nasty lung-bursting ride and that's where my comments came from.

And epic certainly isn't just marketing. I read no magazines, and own no Rapha. Epic sells, but it also exists whether anyone else is watching or not.

Andrew said...

Well said.
'Epic' is the issue for me as a word problem, not a riding or landscape problem.
Just been trawling some surprisingly ropey synonym sites but no luck; epic has it all - poetry, heroes, legends - and saga, well, that's not really available either, and anyway, it's prose.
Discovered that there exists 'epical' but that seems ugly. I like epicity as in the epicity index of a ride but I think that's my own neologism.
Should be a good weekend for high EI rides right now - hope you manage to get out. Nice or nasty, enjoy.