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A bicycle snob takes on an e-bike

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I am a bicycle snob. I'm at a point where beauty and function generally win out over comfort or financial considerations. This is where non-cyclists start to get really confused. Deep down, riding a bike is about sacrifice, and that's not a popular starting point for most people. There's usually a faster way to get where you need, or a drier one, or one that causes a bit less hardship and pain. But the combination of physical challenge and childlike entertainment makes a bicycle a special thing, and this leads to a cascading series of strange decisions. Eventually, you end up riding around on tires that are too skinny, with bars that are too low and a saddle that is too hard. But we revel in this. We love the confusion in our coworkers when we show up for work late, soaked to the bone and exhausted. We love it when they shake their heads, muttering about our grease-stained pants. The more confusion we sow in others, the more certain we are in our feelings. There's a masochistic pride in our ability to do something that others can't (or don't want to). And I think this is why the cycling community has not embraced e-bikes. That's an understatement, really. In the cycling pecking order, e-bikes reside somewhere just above a recumbent, but just below driving around with the AC blasting out the open windows of our diesel belching pick-up. They're a thing that you look sideways at while at a stop light, or roll your eyes at when they blow by you up a hill. Read the rest

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