Someone found www.ragtimecyclist.com recently with the search term “I hate Chris Froome Cyclist”. I know this because the admin part of this site that whirrs away in the background tells me so.
You might think that’s not unusual; after all, Chris Froome is a cyclist, this is a website about cycling, someone typed in the phrase and voila…they landed right here!
As they say in these parts: “Job’s a good ‘un.”
What is a bit odd is that someone typed in the phrase “I hate Chris Froome cyclist” in the first place.
I’m not really a hater of people (and especially not sports-people…life’s too short!) so maybe I’m not best qualified to pass comment on this. To be honest, I have more important things to use my capacity for hate on, like instant coffee, for example. If someone typed the phrase “I hate instant coffee” into Google and found their way to ‘ragtime cyclist’ I would be slightly surprised, perhaps, but delighted.
They would have found a friend in me.
I imagine that if you were to generalise and use the term “I hate cyclists”, your device would all but blow steam out of its ears as it attempted to deal with one of the western world’s most over-used phrases, and collapse under the weight of results (In fact don’t do that…you might break the internet). Just using it here might be placing undue strain on the world’s communication networks.
So why might someone hate Chris Froome?
I’m no great fan of his – he’s a fantastic bike rider who I find a little dull in interviews – but the most I’ve produced in the way of negative press for him here on ragtime cyclist (apart from that last sentence about him being dull) revolves around his weird sticky out elbows and the fact that he’s prone to falling off his bike with alarming regularity – a fact which he himself made fun of by referring to himself as ‘Crash Froome’ earlier this year..
Could it be his somewhat…erm…fluid nationality that provokes hatred?
Admittedly I struggle somewhat with the British-ness of this Kenyan-born-South-African-educated-Monaco-resident, but that’s more a gripe with freedom of movement laws and international administration.
“What about his running feud with our man Wiggins?” I hear you ask.
Well, I’m an unashamed Wiggo fan, that’s true, but I think Sir Brad can probably look after himself now he’s the elder statesman of pro-cycling; I don’t think he needs me to stick up for him. Apart from anything else, I think that now book sales have dwindled they’ve all but moved on from that little row.
Froome is no Wiggins (the antidote to the media trained) as a sporting and media personality, but as any cycling fan who watched him tear up the slopes of Mont Ventoux with the yellow jersey on his back in 2013 will tell you, a fit and firing Chris Froome riding his bike quickly up a big mountain is a spine tingling (if slightly wobbly limbed) thing to behold.
Which brings us back to the fact that the worst charge you can bring against Britain’s second winner of the Tour de France is: “being a bit dull in interviews.”
Is that really enough to stoke the fires of hatred?
And you know what, maybe ‘dull’ is bit harsh anyway…unremarkable, perhaps?
…back to instant coffee; a quick piece of off-the-cuff research (i.e. I typed ‘I hate instant coffee’ into Google) tells me that my dislike of those vile brown granules is neither irrational, disproportionate, nor unusual; there is a whole community out there (like here, for example) that I’ve yet to make contact with.
I’ve had plenty of little chats with lovers of real coffee, but haters of fake coffee are an as-yet unexplored side of the same coin.
And the end result of this hate-related blog post?
If you type either “I hate Chris Froome cyclist”, or “I hate instant coffee” into Google, scroll through enough pages and you will almost certainly find your way to ‘ragtime cyclist’ as the centre of a coffee/cycling related Venn diagram.
Just doing my bit to stoke the debate.
As we say in these parts: ‘Job’s a good ‘un!’