“You are standing in an open field west of a white house, with a boarded front door. There is a small mailbox here.”
I remember sitting there, staring at the white text on a black screen, not knowing what to do. The cursor, blinking away as if waiting for me to do the obvious. Fumbling my childish syntaxes, and poor spelling, I slowly figured out how to get myself moving in this world of oft confusing text. Several hours later I’d found myself in a tunnel without light, I was eaten by a Grue.
I progressed from the simplicity of the choose-your-own-adventure books, keeping a thumb on the last page just in case something went wrong, to the emerging no-take-back style digital text adventures. It was a big step. A child moving with relentless progression into adulthood without noticing it. Where choices matter. Where the things you do and say have actual impact. Rather than the “oh I didn’t mean it that way” *shrug shoulder* and walk away attitude to play with this interesting stick that I found. Something only a childlike mind can have.
Opinions don’t come easy to everyone, actual diehard opinions on a topic. Sometimes these opinions offend people, and that’s OK, once you’re OK with the opinion you have made. No take-backs, no thumb on the last page, stick with it to the end. No more so than in our wonderful, confusing, and emotive world of bikes. A world where we can hide behind a digital avatar or pseudonym unwilling to show a true face.
This has drawn a problem that we cannot get away from. Eventually, you’re going to have an opinion that differs quite far from others. Far enough that it’ll cause people to dislike you for all you stand for, despite never having met you. And that’s ok.
I’ll take my first ‘cross bike as an example. A second-hand old school Alan frame with carbon tubes glued and screwed into aluminium lugs. It was the epitome of perfection in my eyes. Beautiful to behold, a clash of science and design. Everyone else told me it was shit. They shouted abuse at my creaking, flexing, brake-juddering bike and I just got on with riding it around with a cretinous smile on my face.
There are plenty of people I have never met, who have highly different opinions of bikes that I dearly love. These bikes they for no apparent reason deeply dislike. I’m cool with that. And so should you. Just because you love a series of tubes, welded or glued together, doesn’t mean it’s a good thing. Just because someone else doesn’t like it, doesn’t make you correct either. Just go ride the bloody thing and have a good time. Who cares what anyone else thinks.
Beer of the Week
Highwire – Magic Rock Brewing (5.5% ABV)
“High Wire is our tribute to the Pale Ales of the West Coast of America, beers unapologetically hop forward in character.”
Luckily, this is a staple on tap at my local. A beer I love and quite a few others like as well. Slightly fizzy, slightly hoppy, refreshing, works with or without food. It is just one of the most inoffensive beers that I care to pass down my drink hole.