This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.

Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

State of industry speech

This study was brought to my attention by somebody on the bike forums.

I think it demonstrates much of what I have been talking about and have seen (keen grasp of the obvious have I) out on the streets. While I adhere to the Disreali theory of statistics,
"There are three types of lies; lies, damn lies and statistics,"
I have spent my life in business and am able to cover my ass by calling this information "sales figures."
In other words, I kinda believe this stuff.
While there are all sorts of boring numbers, what attracted me, like any advocate, were those that substantiated my own myopic observations (made me feel even more right).
    The thrust is that the industry has found that 73% of American riders ride for recreation, 53% of riders ride for fitness and exercise while a woeful 10% use their bikes for commuting or some other utilitarian purpose. It doesn't matter that the numbers equal more than 100% 'cause these aren't statistics (aren't sales figures cool?).  We also assume that people use their bikes for two things, like going fast is good for you, but apparently commuting and going to the bank is not much exercise or fun. Or could it be?
      From looking at the sales, road bikes out sell every thing. That's no surprise, it's fun to go fast and you can explain the credit card charge to your spouse.   "It's fitness equipment" and they really won't argue because they are afraid you'll buy one for them and expect them to exercise also. But what is a bit remarkable is that mountain bike sales are down while hybrid (spelled commuter) sales are up. It's not exactly a swelling tide, but kind of a ripple on the back of some beach break. You gotta start somewhere and it seems to be starting.
Now if we can only glamorize it a little.

(Gratuitous image of girl on bike.)
  (Hey that guy from Copenhagen Chic gets invited to Rio for this, why not me ?)

Bike shops have the opportunity to sell even more accessories to these new commuters, not baskets and lights or other plebeian things they can actually use. Sell sexy stuff like second computers, heart rate monitors,GPS systems and dyno hubs to keep them charged. That way "going to work" will become a fitness adventure, just like riding a stationary bike in the basement, but with a cool 3D monitor to look at.

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