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Whatever happened to the laid-back days of old?

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Whatever happened to the laid-back days of old?

Old 05-15-19, 07:59 PM
  #101  
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Originally Posted by streetstomper View Post
...they didn't use standard terminology, like the reviews saying a bike had "forks" instead of a fork.
That's reprehensible but don't let it harsh your mellow, man.
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Old 05-15-19, 08:20 PM
  #102  
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I swear this reads like a mid-Winter thread.
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Old 05-17-19, 05:31 PM
  #103  
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Have you been to Minnesota? It's winter, late winter, two weeks of ice-out on the lakes they call summer, and pre winter. I've lived here about twenty years and can't wait to leave.

Practicing burning all my bridges so that I'm fully prepared when I leave in two years. The problem is, the more a-hole I become (not my nature) the more accepted I become. In another year I'll be declining invitations with scorn and derision. In two, they'll erect a monument to me and start a new Lutheran denomination in my honor. I'll hate every minute of it.

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Old 05-17-19, 06:15 PM
  #104  
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
"How much for the little one?"

I just noticed that kid on the right has a "slick" rear tire on his Stingray. Those were highly-coveted for skidding, which is about all they were any good for, since they were shaped like a regular car tire and were useless when the bike was leaned over making a turn. But they were great for "doughnuts", as us evil white kids called them.
Shoot yeah. Me, my brother, and all the neighbor kids on my street had those flat profile slick rear tires on banana seat bikes in the mid 1970s. None of our parents put up the money for a Sting Ray, that was a dream bike. Mine was a bicentennial inspired red, white, and blue Free Spirit from Sears.

We rode the snot out of those things.

Then the BMX wave came to our part of the world and all of us converted our cheater slick bikes to wannabe BMX bikes. New seats, handlebars, tires, and rattle can paint jobs.

Good times. Good times.
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Old 05-17-19, 08:51 PM
  #105  
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Originally Posted by Cl904 View Post
Laid back cycling? Thatís the only kind I do. I ride for fun, nothing else.

its much easier to be laid back on your bike when you leave the helmet, clicky shoes, and spandex at home. Throw some flat pedals on your bike and go for a ride in normal clothes. Wave at people when they say hello. Smoke one. Remember riding as a kid, and bring THAT joy back.
As a kid...
- I remember riding as fast as possible and racing my friends to arbitrary landmarks along our rides.
- I remember building tabletop and double jumps in the woods and riding our bmx bikes on the track that was created.


So you are saying I should bring that not back by riding as fast as I can now and trying a bunch of dumb and dangerous things that came close to ending my chance of having kids many times?

I'm game for the first, but not interested in the second. Too old. I'll stick to some river bottom singletrack as the most technical riding I see.
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Old 05-18-19, 05:51 AM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
As a kid...
- I remember riding as fast as possible and racing my friends to arbitrary landmarks along our rides.
- I remember building tabletop and double jumps in the woods and riding our bmx bikes on the track that was created.


So you are saying I should bring that not back by riding as fast as I can now and trying a bunch of dumb and dangerous things that came close to ending my chance of having kids many times?

I'm game for the first, but not interested in the second. Too old. I'll stick to some river bottom singletrack as the most technical riding I see.
Whatever it takes to recapture that joy.
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Old 05-18-19, 07:07 AM
  #107  
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Time for a music break.
Also my Dad, who was a WW2 veteran, when we would ask him to tell us about the good Ole days would say " the only good thing about the good Ole days is they are past", right before launching into a great story.
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Old 05-19-19, 07:33 AM
  #108  
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Originally Posted by streetstomper View Post
The whole point of this topic is that the Bicycle Rider covers in the original post show that things were still laid-back in the 80s. Covers on the major cycling magazines were likewise focused on fun and enjoyment. It wasn't until around the mid-1990s or 2000 that Bicycling, the last surviving US cycling mag, went whole hog on racing bikes, especially the $8000-15,000 models that show up in their reviews regularly now. Can't remember the last time I saw a touring or commuting article, not that I read it regularly anymore. No more articles on centuries, while there's the occasional list of competitive hillclimbs. Riders don't smile on the covers anymore. The message now seems to be if you're not suffering on the bike, you're not really riding. No articles on regular maintenance, like how to true your own wheels or even how to wrap your handlebars. Bicycling isn't an everyman's sport anymore.
Very few "serious" adult riders smile anymore! Be it on trail, road, or street
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Old 05-19-19, 01:21 PM
  #109  
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Originally Posted by Cl904 View Post
Throw some flat pedals on your bike..

Ah, now one of my bikes does have toe straps, but in my defense I need them to stop gravity pulling my feet off the pedals. I'm still pretty laid-back when riding it though..




Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
They were shaped like a regular car tire and were useless when the bike was leaned over making a turn.
I could do with one of those. In a 24. Hard to find now. The nearest I've seen off the shelf lately is the dubiously named Thick Brick.
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Old 05-19-19, 02:28 PM
  #110  
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Hmmm, the OP has not posted here since 05/12. I wonder if he slyly made whatever point he was trying to make?
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Old 05-19-19, 02:56 PM
  #111  
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Old 05-20-19, 11:54 AM
  #112  
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I have an old trek hybrid that I knock around the neighborhood on, and I wear shorts, loose t-shirt and sneakers. My only concession to cycling style is the helmet for obvious reasons. I also have a Specialized road bike that I use for training rides and the Saturday morning run with the guys. Then, I wear full kit and pay attention to "aero." I love both, but at 73, I am not worried about style or beating anyone. I just love riding. It has become even more precious now, since I had open heart surgery in February to replace an aortic valve. My surgeon says had it not been for the bikes, I would have taken a lot longer to recover. My advice to anyone is to just enjoy getting in the zone every once in a while, regardless if it is at 6 mph or 16 mph.
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Old 05-20-19, 12:03 PM
  #113  
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Agree 100%. Heck, in our neighborhood, even china berry chunking was a competitive event.
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Old 05-20-19, 03:52 PM
  #114  
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Bicycling magazine became referred to as BUYcycling magazine for good reasons. What happened to the laid-back attitude of the 1980s? MARKETING happened. Instead of being about how to or where to go, many bicycling magazines became You GOTTA have this!

Cheers
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Old 05-20-19, 05:13 PM
  #115  
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Wow, what an opportunity to be Gandhi-esque -

"Be the change you wish to see in the world", and [sig. follows]
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Old 05-20-19, 07:43 PM
  #116  
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Wow 5 pages, I can't read all those pages due to time constraints so if this has been addressed sorry.

I noticed the biggest change in the cycling magazine world was articles in the late 70's and into the 90's were much more indepth, today it's more of a summary because they have to fill as much space in the mag as possible for advertisers, which in turn makes it difficult for the mag to do a negative review on a product they advertise without losing the company and the money from their advertisement. Today mags can't make money on the subscription or at the newsstand, they have to have advertisers to make money. So I don't pay much heed to cycling mags anymore, except for Adventure Cycling, that is a good rag but it only comes out once a quarter, I wish it was monthly, also while they do have advertisers they charge more for the mag so they make money from the readers, plus they're a non profit company unlike other cycling mags.
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Old 05-21-19, 06:27 PM
  #117  
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Those days are gone!

I spent most of my life around bikes and the bike business, and the time when it was a pleasant activity and sport are long gone. I grew up in Miami and I was on a road bike at age ten. Rode with C. Carmichael and new the best riders of that era by their first name. Spent thirty five years working in and around bike shops. I have fond memories of the old Raleigh catalog! I don't however suffer from B.I.T.D.S! The ailment of middle aged ex bmxers, (Back in the day syndrome). The "boutique" high end crap of today has ruined the bicycle business. And not just that, the people I knew then were laidback ex hippies. Now a lot of the business of bikes and bike riders has been taken over by type A personalities!
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Old 05-21-19, 06:37 PM
  #118  
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Originally Posted by streetstomper View Post
The whole point of this topic is that the Bicycle Rider covers in the original post show that things were still laid-back in the 80s. Covers on the major cycling magazines were likewise focused on fun and enjoyment. It wasn't until around the mid-1990s or 2000 that Bicycling, the last surviving US cycling mag, went whole hog on racing bikes, especially the $8000-15,000 models that show up in their reviews regularly now. Can't remember the last time I saw a touring or commuting article, not that I read it regularly anymore. No more articles on centuries, while there's the occasional list of competitive hillclimbs. Riders don't smile on the covers anymore. The message now seems to be if you're not suffering on the bike, you're not really riding. No articles on regular maintenance, like how to true your own wheels or even how to wrap your handlebars. Bicycling isn't an everyman's sport anymore.
Bicycling is an everyman's sport. You are making a huge error if you think stuff in magazines reflects reality. Stuff in magazines is written to sell magazines. I see tons of people , kids in my area enjoying themselves while bicycling. Walmart still sells gazillions of Walmart priced bicycles to people happy to have them.
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Old 05-22-19, 06:36 AM
  #119  
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The 80s were great. They gave us click shifting, and clipless pedals. They also gave cycling a huge boost because of the 84 Olympics. Further the bikes of the day were fantastic with their lugged frame and down tube shifting. They were beautiful and had almost no cables flapping in the wind.
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Old 05-22-19, 07:34 AM
  #120  
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Since my life is not dictated by magazines I have no idea what this thread is about.

I only ride bikes because I like to. Sometimes I try to go fast, usually I go slow, sometimes I ride a long way without stopping, sometimes I stop every quarter-mile and take a bunch of pictures.

I do it all purely because I enjoy it.

As far as "back in the laid-back days" ... I recently adjusted my work schedule so i could rejoin my local gym ... or something like that ... and while I was signing up an older (than me) gentleman stopped to examine my bicycle (of course I ride to the gym--I ride everywhere I can ... like when I was a kid.) He had had heart issues, so had I, so we talked about that. He said that he was trying to get back into cycling but he just couldn't go fast like he used to before his heart issues.

He regaled me with stories from his racing days, talked about how he had done a local randonee in nearly some record-setting pace, went on about another gym member who actually held the record ... when I tried to tell him that to me, every mile on the bike, no matter slow or fast, was a gift and a joy ... he faded out. I tried to explain that I loved just being on the bike, and that bad heart or not, I was so glad I could still ride, and how much joy it brought me ... but he just didn't get it. If he couldn't go fast on a bike, just riding a bike wasn't worth it to him.

He was an old guy who used to be a young guy "Back in the day," when everyone was supposedly "laid-back."

Our myths are myths. The magazines have always peddled myths (pedaling myths, in this case.) There was never a "laid-back" era, and not only now are "Type A" personalities attracted to bikes (Eddie Mercxx and Cipolini were such laid-back guys, right?)

As for the mags ... already been said. They need ads because subscriptions don't cover the costs, and they can't afford to take up space with long articles because half the pages are ads. They can't afford to alienate advertisers, so their reviews are ****genized pap. And they aim at the wealthy rider because, duh ... who else spends the money on the stuff that's advertised?

But it's not like the bike mags were pure and holy back in the day---they Always aimed their ads at whoever they thought would buy the products ... again, duh. What's the point of an "ad"? It's just that back then, everyone was buying whatever baseline Schwinn was for sale, and not many people were buying exotic racing frames.

Now the people who were buying Schwinns (or the Sears or Montgomery Ward equivalent) are buying from Walmart, and a lot more riders are buying bikes better than the pros were riding 40 years ago ... and similar to what the pros ride now.

But ... laid back? That is and always has been a personal thing. Nowadays people are being fed the idea that "laid-back" equals "lazy" and everyone should work harder for less and buy more .... and if people want to believe that tripe, great. Not My Problem.

I am about as "laid-back" now as I ever have been. I was certainly a lot more amped up when I was 9 or 12 or 15 and riding heavy steel bikes while wearing jeans and sneakers. I enjoyed different things then, or the same things in different ways. But I have gotten More "laid back" as I have aged .... and now I almost always ride in spandex bibs (simply more comfortable) and a jersey (sweat dries faster or doesn't build up at all) and even my sandals have cleats on the bottom.

So again ... I really don't understand this thread. I guess I will go back and read it again.

A closing note: These Are the Good Old Days. If not, you are doing it wrong.

Last edited by Maelochs; 05-22-19 at 07:38 AM.
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Old 05-22-19, 07:47 AM
  #121  
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Originally Posted by the bike wrench View Post
I spent most of my life around bikes and the bike business, and the time when it was a pleasant activity and sport are long gone. I grew up in Miami and I was on a road bike at age ten. Rode with C. Carmichael and new the best riders of that era by their first name. Spent thirty five years working in and around bike shops. I have fond memories of the old Raleigh catalog! I don't however suffer from B.I.T.D.S! The ailment of middle aged ex bmxers, (Back in the day syndrome). The "boutique" high end crap of today has ruined the bicycle business. And not just that, the people I knew then were laidback ex hippies. Now a lot of the business of bikes and bike riders has been taken over by type A personalities!


It's no longer fun as a business, maybe, but I don't get how this ruins it as an activity--so don't buy the high-end and do the riding you want to do. Type A personalities don't dictate which bike you need to buy and how you ride it.
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Old 05-22-19, 07:57 AM
  #122  
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If you hang with me for a second, I can try to give a theory here......

There's a book titled "Bowling Alone". It documents a theory of a perceived loss of "social capital" within the United States in the last 4 decades.

It uses a mind numbing amount of statistical data of social clubs, teams, fraternity organizations, church membership, union membership and other things to show the changes in tastes and lifestyles.

You could throw participation in cycling clubs, groups, teams into it as well.

The original observation in the book was that overall, the bowling alley industry hasn't died. It's numbers were actually higher. However, league participation used to drive bowling alley numbers to a higher extent. Nowadays, it's just people who show up with a few friends to toss some balls.

I do think we're seeing a counterinsurgency in a few areas. Brewery group ride critical mass stuff is WAY up in participation. Some local group rides are starting to thrive again.

However, I am seeing a big drop in availability of local road racing. The racing I have done.......I'd say a Cat 4/5 of today probably has the fitness of a 2 or 3 even just 20 years ago due to "structured training for the masses" and this odd new mentality. The 4/5's don't have the brains for racing necessarily, I sure don't.

But we've got local 4/5's that can do into the 300's for 20 minutes. That's a pretty steep barrier to entry to race.
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Old 05-22-19, 08:30 AM
  #123  
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99.9% of the people complaining about the "laid back days of old" don't understand how big competitive cycling and racing were in the early 20th century.

Cycling pro's were gods and every kid wanted to be like Cioppi or Bartalli.

If anything, the 1960's to the 1980's were a lull and cycling is still laid back compared to the racing craze of the early years.


-Tim-
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Old 05-22-19, 08:33 AM
  #124  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
The original observation in the book was that overall, the bowling alley industry hasn't died. It's numbers were actually higher. However, league participation used to drive bowling alley numbers to a higher extent. Nowadays, it's just people who show up with a few friends to toss some balls.
So ... bowling has gotten more laid-back and less competitive?
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Old 05-22-19, 08:40 AM
  #125  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post

There's a book titled "Bowling Alone". It documents a theory of a perceived loss of "social capital" within the United States in the last 4 decades.

It uses a mind numbing amount of statistical data of social clubs, teams, fraternity organizations, church membership, union membership and other things to show the changes in tastes and lifestyles.
I have an undergrad degree in sociology, so I was used the reading "soc-speak" writing. I was unable to get anywhere close to even the middle of that book. Shame, because the subject interested me.
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