"Perhaps it is because my late mother had an affair with a cyclist that I have never had much time for them."This is the start of a ludicrous article against everything that is cycling by Express "journalist" Camilla Tominey. Because of a bad personal experience, she decides that anyone on two wheels is worth degrading and humiliating. It shows a journalist who is bitter, badly informed and mostly ignorant and who takes her personal issues into her business affairs...professionally this is very poor., but let's have a look at why:
"The trouble with cyclists is that they take themselves so very seriously, don’t they?"Yes we do. Is that wrong? Passion is involved. We love following the sport, the activity of riding.
"When they are not running red lights or riding on pavements, they are harping on about road safety, as if it is everyone else’s responsibility except theirs."No. Generalising is never pretty for a writer, is it Camilla? We don't ALL ride on pavements, we don't ALL jump lights, the greatest majority are responsible when riding. There are always going to be reckless idiots in all walks of life, even some drivers, you know? And some write for newspapers!
"Surely only someone with a wicker basket for a brain would take to our congested capital on two wheels with only fresh air between their skull and the tarmac?"Regardless of what we think of the use of helmets, they are not compulsory, so there will be people who will not wear them. I would like everyone to wear one but I can't force everyone to do so. Dear Camilla, take it up with the government, don't blame the cyclists.
"... they complain that London should be “more like Amsterdam”, seemingly forgetting that the city is seven times as big and home to 10 times as many people."This is no excuse. Size does not matter, density does. Whether London is that much bigger it doesn't mean the roads should be different. It doesn't mean that 10 times more people are on an equivalent stretch of road...but I feel I'm getting a bit scientific for you, Camilla.
"...the driver is always to blame."The driver is not always to blame. But drivers have a bigger responsibility since their the ones hurtling down the streets with a few tons of metal.
"Don’t get me wrong, I actually love cycling. I just choose to do it in the safety and comfort of a spinning class at the gym."I think that is for the best.
"Mamils (middle-aged men in Lycra) have what can only be described as an “all the gear but no idea” mentality. They dress like Bradley Wiggins but ride their bicycles with the skill of Christopher Biggins."Offensive again, but that's your style, Camilla (by the way, is Biggins really bad on the bike? Or was that just a primary school type rhyme?).
"It was even worse on Sundays, when these leotard-wearing “gods” behaved as if they had divine right to dominate the roads."Are you saying YOU have that divine right instead? Why don't you give cyclists more room in the first place? Is it the sense of guilt of seeing someone exercise while you just sit there occasionally pressing a pedal?
"Drivers have to pass a test, so why don’t cyclists? Drivers have to wear seatbelts, so why don’t cyclists have to wear helmets and reflective clothing? If vehicles must have MoTs to prove their roadworthiness, why don’t bikes?"You're blaming the wrong people, again, it's the government you should be writing anathemas for.
"When it comes to road safety, it is not drivers who must change gear but cyclists."No. Everyone has to respect everyone else. Change has to be first and foremost in respecting each other. Something you should really learn to do. Don't just blame a cyclist for sleeping with your mum... have a chat with your mum too, I think she might enlighten you in the realities of life.