By Christopher Cudworth
While signing up for the Winfield Criterium I chanced to view this warning:
DECENCY: Please respect residents and families when changing for your event. Riders breaking indecency laws (i.e. nudity) will be disqualified, ticketed and possibly arrested.
That’s not an unreasonable request. There is nothing quite so offensive as the bare, pale backside of a cyclist highlighted in the afternoon sun. Especially when the tan lines above and below that backside essentially frame said white skin with jarring emphasis.
And yet, we get to the race and find ourselves struggling to find a place to change a kit. Or, some people just don’t care.
The people in the first category simply need to learn to cover themselves inside their vehicle and change clothes. It’s not that hard.
The second category, cyclists and runners who just don’t care if anyone sees them naked in public, really do need to be punished.
It’s so easy to ruin an event for the rest of us by being a rude jerk or a rube jerk. The two are quite commonly one and the same.
Imagine standing in your front yard at a home along a bike course with your two daughters, ages six and two. Suddenly this bare scary guy emerges from behind an SUV with his naked nard and the two kids are permanently scarred for life.
One must imagine the typical nudification among cyclists and runners at events is primarily a male thing. Yes I know some great ladies who don’t care that much if you see them in the buff. But they’re usually classy enough not to show their goods to the greater neighborhood.
Because it’s one thing for fellow athletes to look up and see the goods. It’s quite another for innocent people in their homes and businesses to be shocked into submission by hairy or hairless body shapes.
That is not to say we should not support the manically fun event called The Naked Bike Ride. That’s a totally different approach to nakedness. People know what they’re getting with The Naked Bike Ride.
So use some class this summer, runners and riders. Discretion really is the better part of valor.