Midlife crisis? What midlife crisis?

The BBC says it’s a real phenomenon.

And now so do Armstrong Prestige Cars on Cambridge Terrace. No coincidence then that the Wellington home of the Porsche and the Jag are now using high end road bikes in their windows to entice their core market. The midlife crisis middle aged men are deserting the ridiculous sportscars for lycra bibs and carbonfibre roadbikes

Competing interests declaration: I have had both a sportscar midlife crisis, and a bicycle midlife crisis. And I look shit in lycra.




10 thoughts on “Midlife crisis? What midlife crisis?

  1. atom

    this might explain my brother… a little over six months ago, shortly after i upgraded my commuter bike, he bought a Trek Soho… belt drive, 8 speed hub shifter, hub brakes, fenders, puncture resistant tires, etc… a really nice commuter for slush and snow, but he lives and works in silicon valley! i think he asked me what kind of bike to get, and i told him to get something cheap and used to see if he’ll use it, then spend real money if it works out. then he went to the bike shop and got really excited when the shop took $200 off the sticker price of the previous year’s soho. he still spent over $1000(US) and didn’t even get any blinkies thrown in.

    so far he’s ridden it to work once (where he has secure-access parking). he may have ridden it around campus a few times, but by far most of the miles that bike has seen is as an accessory for his toyota prius, riding on the bike rack between san jose and santa monica. he sure looks eco-friendly driving a hybrid with a bicycle on it!

    last time i asked him about it, he said it’s been months since he’s been on it. sigh…


  2. Lesley

    My favourite story (friend of a friend) goes like this.

    Employee: How’s your new road bike going?
    Boss: Fantastic. I shaved 5 minutes off my time at the last big race.
    Employee: Wow, that’s amazing. How much did the bike cost you?
    Boss: not cheap.
    Employee:……. so?
    Boss: Well, it worked out about $5000 per minute.

    The vast majority of us are not road racers and the few that are, are not competing for the Tour de France. I think of it like driving a 4×4 SUV monstermobile with roo-bars, when the roughest terrain you face is the Pak’n’Save carpark.

    I am as guilty of this as the next person, my 27 speed bake cost way more than it should have and the hardest hills I tackle are Adelaide Road and Constable Street. I mock myself so that I am allowed to criticise others.


    1. Lisa

      Shirt. That is indeed not cheap. But yeah, not that I can criticise, eh? The second-cheapest bike in our 5-bike 2-person house cost $110 but you wait till I’ve vamped it out with a Rohloff speed hub, dynamo lighting, custom paint… And realistically, when I’ve finished doing that I’ll probably buy another one of a different description and start playing around with that.


    2. atom

      i think of it this way – before i got my commuter bike i was spending $100/mo on a bus pass. i was in good health but starting to get back pain from inactivity. within a year of not getting a monthly bus pass, the bike and all of the accessories paid for themselves. as soon as i got moving every day my lower back felt better and i didn’t need (to spend money on) a chiropractor; my resting pulse dropped 10%; and i feel great. instead of getting (read: spending money on) a gym membership and trying make time to use it, i turned my commute into a workout and saved money.

      i’ve since upgraded my commuter and last i checked the cheapest monthly bus pass is $130-180. aside from being in better shape and feeling better than i would without the bike, my wallet is *still* ahead of the game compared to the alternatives.

      my tt/tri bike… that’s another story 😉


      1. Lisa

        Well exactly. My score-of-the-century Bianchi mixte was $75 off Trade Me, I spent $60 getting the wheels trued and the inner tubes replaced, another $30 on lights and that’s pretty much been it for the last year.* I do still catch the bus sometimes, but only when I HAVE to and then grudgingly.

        *I have also bought panniers, a saddlebag and Monkeylectrics. But they get transferred between bikes so I don’t really count them. See how good I am at justifying bike spending?


  3. Lesley

    This seems to be the perfect hybrid vehicle for men of a certain age. I haven’t seen it in the windows of the car shops in town yet.


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