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Forums > Social Discussion > The meaningful discussion thread

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Location: Rotherham, UK
Member Since: 4th Mar 2003
Total posts: 724
Posted:This is where people can have a meaningful discussion about things that you feel are really important, things that you think are important in life, to your being. Even about how you think society has changed/has it? are the traits we once admired from older generations been lost/ why?
anything meaningful that gets you really fired up in conversation.
Have a rant even, and we'll see what happens eh!

Only when the last tree has died
and the last river has been poisoned
and the last fish has been caught
will we realise that we
cannot eat money.

Cree Indian, 1909

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield
Member Since: 28th Aug 2002
Total posts: 3252
Posted:I pretty much agree with the above example- if a transvestite walks through a red neck town at 2 am, then they should expect trouble (wrong as it is).

However I'd say that they are some significant differences between a transvestite walking through a redneck town, and a unicyclist getting from A to B on public streets: -

1. the transvestite example is set in a specific location ie a redneck town- possibly the most anti-transvestite location concievable. The unicyclist example takes place in any street.

I think you'll agree that your example would be weakened if you spoke of a transvestite walking down any street in any town. Because then it's looking a bit dodgy to even suggest that they should expect trouble.

And that's the position of the unicyclist, they're getting from A to B in the area they live in, just as their close relatives, the two wheeled cyclists, get from A to B.

Incidently, a redneck towm at 2 a.m. would also not be a good place for a unicyclist, and it's a place I would avoid on one wheel.

At one time a transvestite would be in danger wherever they walked, now they are less so- one of the reasons is that a few brave souls challenged those preconceptions, generally at great personal risk.

As you point out Charles, by doing so, wrong as the violence inflicted upon them was unjustified, they, to a large extent, should have (and no doubt did), expect it.

But they were on a mission to bring about change, and transvestites weren't the only people to benefit from the reduction in narrow mindedness that ensued- we all did.

Because, like I said above, one of the most petty, annoying and harmful traits of the 'general public' is their innane pointing, putting down and, sometimes, violent attacks on others, simply because those others dress like the opposite gender, ride one wheel, are black etc etc.

"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32

Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: sheffield
Member Since: 28th Aug 2002
Total posts: 3252
Posted:This discussion brought to mind a thread on unicyclist.com by a guy called Scott Kurland, which started-

'Yet another advantage to the Coker
I was out riding today and a car driver objected to my presence on Red
River, blaring his horn and missing me by inches. At the stop sign the car
slewed right into the bike lane to cut me off, parked, and the drive got out
to 'discuss' my riding - on Red River, in the marked bike lane - with me.

I idled until his intentions were clear, then rode forward and dismounted,
seat in front.

Guess where the wheel hit him.

It got worse for him after that, you really don't want to know...'

A 'Coker' is a giant wheeled (36") unicycle with a massive tyre, exactly the kind of thing you don't want rammed into your groin; the thread is here: -

It is violent, and some people thought it unjustified, but, like Scott said, the driver in question was not only extremely annoying, but also endangered the unicyclist by his reckless driving.

the reason I bring up this thread is in connection with some of what Charles has said about 'expectations' the implication being that if n someone choses to get from A to B on a one wheeled cycle, they should expect stares, comments, insults and occasional hostility from members of the public.

So, to turn that around a bit, should the public also expect to recieve equally standard responses to their comments and actions etc.

Because the unicyclists who ride aggressive off road set=ups, tourers and Cokers are not the same kind of personalities who used small wheeled 20"-ers for juggling/stage shows/street hockey.

A lot of them are just bog standard blokes/townies who just happen to like riding one wheelers i.e. they aren't clowns, jugglers, hippies etc; they may have no committment whatsoever to peace or anger management

Imagine what the likely (and therefore expected) response would be if a memeber of the public, for whatecer reason, decides to verbally abuse some big hard towny on a moutain bike (2 wheeler)- it's likely to be a smack in the face.

So, if this same cyclist then gets into a bit of off road unicycling and hits the streets?

Now I'm not advocating aggression here, I think that the majority of public responses are just a way of initiating interaction, or based on the simple misunderstanding that comments like 'your wheeles been nicked' are humourous/original.

Tactics like discussion, maybe sometimes just ignoring etc ie peaceful ones are preferable.

But, when the line is crossed, like in Scotts example, you have to stand up for yourself.

For me, after many, many hours of riding one wheelers over several years, that line has only been crossed twice, and, in both cases, the end result was far less extreme than in Scotts case; but I did have to stand up for myself, and they did both recieve some suffering.

But I'm a peaceful individual for whom such actions are definitly a last resort.

My point is that not everyone getting into the new forms of unicycling is so peaceful.

So, if the publics occasional abuse is justified on the grounds that it's 'expected' behaviour on their part, surely, by the same reasoning, when some unicyclists get angry in response to the provocation, then that's also 'expectable', and therefore justified?

"You can't outrun Death forever.
But you can make the Bastard work for it."

"Last of The Lancers"
AFC 32

Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!


Location: Hexham, Newcastle, England
Member Since: 25th May 2004
Total posts: 233
Posted:Dave, I don't remember anyone saying that members of the public were justified in treating you like they do, just that it should be expected. So, I'd say that these members of public ought to maybe expect retaliation, but that this retaliation is justifiable only through self-defence etc, and that expectation has no effect on the correctness or inncorrectness of either parties actions.


Page: 12

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