How was your ride today?


In case you need clarification, this is a question, not an assumption.


I’ve since changed those guidelines because I realized that it’s a bit harsh to not allow someone to ride with me because of their lack of certain items.

However, I do prefer someone does come equipped with helmet and lights if they ride with me because I feel a sense of responsibility for their safety if they come out. If they don’t like my guidelines, they can choose not to come and still ride their bikes.


I pretty much give up, but just before I do, please do me the honour of considering these points.

Look up Chris Boardman. Smart fella, and one of the best cyclists to come out of The Wirral. He talks a lot of sense about road safety and helmets.

To continue focusing on helmets (or lack thereof) is detrimental to cycling. Check out the research on the reduction in cycling where helmets are compulsory.

Check out the research on how drivers think cyclists are safe[r] in a helmet, as a consequence of which they allow them less passing space.

How about next time you get in a car with someone, ask if they have done any advanced driver training. I’m pretty confident they will say no. Ask yourself the same question. The point being, we would be far better served if the public in general focused on what would actually make a difference to cyclists safety. Simple answer. Better driving and awareness of other road users.

Why are we not prefacing every driving-related conversation with “you really ought to improve your skills”? This would have a far greater impact on our collective safety.

To quote Mr Boardman “helmets are a red herring”. If the pro-helmet evangelists put as much time and effort into encouraging/persuading/berating drivers, we’d all be a lot better off.

Thanks for all the fish.



It’s not harsh. Don’t change it.


To me the helmet question comes down to what type of riding you are doing.

If you’re on a town bike with a big basket heading to pick up groceries on dedicated cycling infrastructure in the Netherlands, hands down, no helmet.

If you’re on a racing bike doing fast descents with hairpins and you get a rush from leaning it over, quite honestly, you must have a deathwish to ride without a helmet. Twice in such situations in my life, a helmet has most likely saved my life and/or kept me from becoming a vegetable.

But then in between these two scenarios, there are a lot of grey areas and quite a wide spectrum of cycling situations. These are where it’s basically up to the judgement of the rider.


Amen. You typed pretty much what I couldn’t be bothered typing.

As we all know, ranlee’s rides are of the latter.


ranlee’s rides turn boys into men.


Those monsters…



So I guess it was @ColT the forumosan who advocated for helmetless riders a few years ago… this a bit OT, but I’d like to get back to this later when I have more time. But in short, I think that @ColT uses a couple of fallacies in his reasoning. If he thinks that there are more important things like driving skills or whatever, OK, that’s important too, but it doesn’t mean that you don’t benefit from having a helmet when you fall into the ground. Also I wouldn’t ask anybody to be super knowledgable to get on my car (if I had one!), but I would ask them to wear the seatbelt.

I’m hungry.


Very disappointed and perplexed with how this thread is developing. Sport is my escape from work, life, seriousness of politics, etc. This and maybe two or three other things in life are all I really get excited about (off the top of my head, my kids, significant other, and chajangmyun are the others). The discussion here should be lighthearted and enjoyable, and there should be a kind of camaraderie among the participants. Sheesh.


Hey, why don’t you fuck off???

I’m kidding, I actually love you.

OK, I don’t love you but I kinda like you.


Tea and coffee by Xiwan Bike Club members after the morning ride today.


My issue is with the ongoing, widespread demonization of those who choose not to wear helmets.

Where on earth are you seeing demonization?!

Um … good? So maybe stop focusing on helmets? That hadn’t been an issue in a long while until you brought it up. All ranlee said was if someone was wearing normal clothes rather than cycling clothes, he’d be surprised if they turned out to be fast. And suddenly you’re attacking him for being anti-non-helmet people or something.

What a weird thing to get a bee in your presumably unused bonnet about.


Oh my… I’m going to do a ride, not super long but still several dozens of kms (I think) on a borrowed bike… and I just realized I don’t have helmet!!!



So even thought I’m not doing the rides I would like to do, I’m still doing some new routes and I cellebrate it.

Today I borrowed a bike that my brother has put together: Peugeot frame (some old steel PX something frame), some weird, not standard anymore components, and a handlebar that had a horrible angle that destroyed my hands.

I thought that it would be easy to find the way to the other side of the bay where I am now, but while it’s not impossible, it’s a bit more confusing than to get around in Taiwan… at least in the areas where I ride.

The weather was nice, not hot, not cold (insert here that balm/balmy/whatever word you guys keep using in the other thread), and the views were not terribly bad.

I had no helmet. The gear shifters were these old things without indexes that you have to reach in the second tube, and the chain kept getting out whenever I shifted from “small” to big sprocket. A really big annoyance, really. And the handlebar, being probably too short, felt too nervous.

I felt so unconfident.

Anyway, I made it to the other side and went to the beach, looking for an area far enough for getting naked and having a bath. Apparently the beach has some nude areas, but I think that most of this is just gay guys looking for a fuck in the bushes. There are some “dunes” where these guys and a few other normal people get off there clothes there… anyway, I think I walked a couple of kilometers, no kidding. And I still felt a bit awkward getting naked there even if there weren’t people next to me.

I planned to go back by the same way, but I aborted my plans. I just didn’t feel confident enough on the silly bike my brother put together: it really needs some adjustments, and I was missing a helmet. So instead I decided to have lunch in the little town and take the ferry back. I still could ride in the city where I stay anyway.

I don’t deserve it at all, but I have treated myself with three different special beers, the last one being still in the glass right now.



So many questions… PX-10? Chrome lugs? Nervex or Prugnat? Vitus or Reynolds?
Spain? California?.. or?

A picture can speak a thousand words…


Nice time on Xiwan Rd this morning, and came down Feng Gui Zui. The weather has been hot, but incredible visibility/low pollution the past 2 days. Don’t want it to end!


I think you just convinced me to head up Xiwan Road tomorrow. Wow, 14 on the AQI scale now in Xizhi!


We should start a list, “The hoops you jump through to ride Xiwan.”

@marasan you have no idea how lucky you are to be living so close to that climb.