The ‘Truth’ Is Far More Complicated…


A Simple Truth?

A Simple Truth?

The plaque reads:

“The bicycle is a simple solution to some of the world’s most complicated problems”

Like most truisms (e.g. ‘Protected Bike Lanes are safest‘) it seems to be true. But here are some things to ponder:

  • If the bicycle were a simple solution then what is the foot?
    • You do not need bicycle mechanics if a bicycle is really ‘simple’, you could simply wake up of a morning and plod off down the road the way you do on your own two feet.
    • Feet do not require wheel builders and truing stands.
    • Feet do not require skilled artisans to braze lugs onto tubing to make a frame that has to be designed with special care to fit specific riders.
    • Feet do not have chains that require intricate machinery to fabricate them.
    • Feet do not require expensive components to move their chains to allow a different gear ratio.
    • Feet stop without the necessity of either rim or disk brakes.
    • Feet do not require patches and tubing and tires to repair punctures and blowouts.
    • Feet do not need to be strapped onto pedals before you can move forward or unclipped to avoid falling.
    • Feet work for humans at ages 2 through 100 and can take you just about anywhere including straight up the side of a mountain. Bicycles are not simple enough to do that.
  • Bikes solve one problem and one problem only, how to get from point A to point B without the use of a gasoline motor. But feet have done this for thousands of years.
    • Bikes have never solved a war or eradicated a disease because they are not powered by anything other than a chain.
    • Feet on the other hand are connected to a human body whose brain is capable of the Theory of Relativity or even designing something as complex as a bicycle.
    • Bicycles are great for exercise and travel, but aside from that they are overrated.
    • Feet can solve the problem of how to spend the next hour at the high school dance.
    • Feet can get you up and over a fence in a single bound.
    • You can stomp grapes with your feet, never with your bicycle.
    • You can mud wrestle in feet and all you have to do afterwards is spray them off and towel dry. No chain lubrication required.
    • Feet do not have brake pads that wear down and must be replaced.
    • Feet look better in high heels than do pedals in traffic on icy pavement.