I am very keen on attractive bikes, more so than ‘being attractive on a bike’ as the ‘main focus’,this means that older people can look great on bikes too and we need more older people on bikes. It also reflects artistic talent.
You see lots of ‘attractive women on bikes’ being photographed ‘to encourage women’ but in this country there are few and far between ‘attractive arty bikes’. I hardly ever see any in London. In Holland it is fairly normal ‘and accepted’ that a Dutch woman blings up her bike, even to work, if she wants to, particularly if she has a creative bent. In fact it is good PR for their country and perhaps the company too as it draws attention to it.
I think if there were more arty bikes on our roads, more women would cycle. They would look at their ugly plain car and think, a bike looks beautiful. Unfortunately too many are conformist to even consider doing this. And they may be afraid ‘of the stick’.
In Britain, if you make your bike look pretty, you are regarded as weird and ‘not one of us’ unless you are a greenie or fairly liberal but if say, you have a barge boat along Little Venice, it is accepted to put flowers all over the barge and other things to make it look attractive. It is no wonder arty types flock to Brighton to mix with similar types. They are sick of the endless put downs.
I am stuck in the irritating stockbroker belt part of the UK and it is a little hard to ‘express yourself properly’. Also because of the lack of women cyclist arty types in the area, there is no one you can talk to get some great ideas of how to dress up your bike, so you just end looking up on the internet. I don’t even know if there are any bicycle art bike competitions either which would be fun to enter.
But in the UK, particularly in the conservative parts of silver-&-blue-car-mondeo-country, where ‘everybody wants to look the same’, it is regarded as ‘eccentric’ and just another reason for a woman cyclist to ‘feel alienated in British Society’. We just ‘don’t fit in’. Cycling magazines don’t even talk about arty bikes although London Cyclist is one of the ‘good ones’. Art and bikes apparently ‘doesn’t exist’ in the mainstream cycling world. Apparently we are supposed to all like plain bicycles. When they are done up really well, it really shows the woman’s artistic flair and fun. It gives the bike a bit of personality.
My commuter bike has now been blinged and I think it looks lovely. I am going to risk ‘being different’ and enjoy being ‘an outcast’. Even on my bike ride this morning I can feel ‘daggers towards my bike’ because it is not dull (like it should be). I will let you know if anyone comments but I don’t think many will as ‘Brits like to keep their negative comments to themselves’ or they will find away to make the person to ‘feel humiliated’ with a ‘joke’ which can put people off expressing themselves.
Oh well, at the end of the day I like it, sod what these miserable Brits think!
UPDATE: My boss likes my bike, and she loves the colours. She said ‘did anyone say anything?’ I said ‘no’.
Update: Is it true that in Holland they have Bicycle Flower Rides, using fresh flowers? Fantastic. The UK should have some of those, good or PR too. Maybe the Green Party can organise one just before the Elections much better than Cameron’s silly idea of ‘using his wife’ what about celebrating the beauty of pedal power?
Scottish bicycles could use heather (better than Thistles, Brits roses, and er Wales ‘leeks’. I favour white roses myself.