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#2: THE WEATHER CYCLE

By Chris McGuire

Chris close up

We’re a funny lot, us larger cyclists. We really are: 

“You pay more attention to that bike than you do to me,” said my partner, I forget her name.

“That’s not true!”

Some days it probably is, but I wouldn’t say that to “What’s-her-name”.

I’ve had some really good reactions to the 1st of the blogs I put up here for Fat Lad At The Back. People seem really interested in my diabetes and how cycling has helped with my fitness, which is something I’ll go into more detail about at a later date.

Others have said that I don’t look like a ‘ballet dancing hippo’ – much. I’m sure there’s a compliment in there somewhere. I’m currently struggling to find it. You’ll be disappointed to hear that Fat Lad currently have no plans to create tutus in my size, so those who’ve asked for photos will just have to wait.

I’ve had some great rides this week, despite the weather. There was a short period where I thought I should get myself a job at the Met Office – which is only just down the road from where I live in Devon. Every time I left the house in my FLAB gear the heavens opened. My Bobby Dazzler jersey, I’m happy to announce, does not go transparent when drenched. Good for me, bad for any planned Fat Lad wet T-shirt competitions.

Seriously, I don’t think I’ve ever been wetter than I have on the last couple of rides. It makes me think FLAB should market their clothes as swimwear too.

Thankfully, my preferred cycle route passes a great cycling café. Along with being purveyors of great coffee and cake the good people in this establishment don’t seem to mind drenched Fat Lads in Lycra massive leaving giant pools of rainwater all over the establishment. For this I shall be forever grateful.

Seriously, there was a period during my last ride, as I waited in the café for the rain to stop, that I considered ditching my pride and joy bike. Instead I Googled ‘How do you build an Ark?’ Thankfully, the rain had stopped before any animals arrived, two by two or otherwise.

As I killed time in the café, it struck me that many cyclists preferred this environment to being out on a bike. I’ll be honest, that’s certainly been true for me at times. I’d love to know the statistics around MAMIL café use. Do cyclists spend more time in Lycra riding bikes or drinking lattes? If the former is more popular, perhaps an extra bib could be added to bib shorts – to deal with splashes for foam from vigiourous coffee drinking. Just a thought – I don’t think it’ll be the way I earn a fortune. Let me know though, if you do spend inordinate amounts of time drinking coffee in your cycling gear – or it this just a myth? One thing I can say for certain is I’ve never sat in a café dressed like a ballet dancing hippo, drinking a cappuccino. Personally, I don’t really see hippos as big coffee drinkers - unlike cyclists.

Hope you all have good rides in the coming days, despite the weather. If you do end up soaked to the skin, here’s my tip dry your bike before you dry yourself. There’s very little chance that you, unlike the cycle, will go rusty.

PS: Dry yourself too, you don’t want to catch a cold!

Chris McGuire is a writer and FLAB MAMIL. He has the World’s most patient girlfriend and a very clean bike.