I realised early on in my adventures that cycling alone would lead to a number of strange phenomenon. One I did not expect was an overwhelming increase in my levels of competitiveness.
Don't get me wrong I am very competitive by nature, although for some reason I never for one minute believed I would be racing others on the basis of them trying to get home quicker than me. If I was in a car I would be scowled upon as a boy racer, a danger to others or too many the type of bloke who waits at the lights staring through the window begging for a race???
Why then is it ok that almost all commuters feel it is their natural right to race?
The story comes from Wednesday night. I am riding home leisurely, had a busy day at work and just running through the ups and downs of the day in my head. (Just in case you wanted know, I am a Health club Manager by profession). A "good looking" cyclist passes me? The statement "good looking" relates not to his Brad Pitt style features but more the kit he has, his shiny bike and the fact he looks like an actual cyclist. Someone who may cycle outside the day to day drudge.
To me that is fine, I am in my own world and not at all interested in a 5 mile race home. But then.......
I discover "Tubs" is in tow. By "Tubs" I mean an overweight individual, on an old bike looking as far from being a cyclist as you could get. At this point instinct kicked in and began to give chase.
I then proceeded to follow the pair for 2 mile before over taking and leaving them both in my wake. I arrive home with the great satisfaction that I once again was not over taken on a ride and I have outclassed some more measly individuals. Then I realise all I did was over take a couple of mates who had they wanted to could probably have given me a good examination.
Was I born with this instinct to win or at least compete? What exactly is the prize? Who is the competition?
All I know is it makes me feel GOOD!!!