Any cyclist will tell you that cycling puts a smile on your face; indeed, sometimes it puts a laugh on your face. (Can you put a laugh on a face? I’m the writer, so I say you can).
This morning I was thinking of some of the funny experiences I've had when cycling, and my mind turned immediately to my childhood, when having fun on bikes was as natural as breathing.
My friends and I regularly used to hang out on our bikes, and get up to all sorts of antics. We used to go on ‘get lost’ rides in Epping Forest, where the idea was, obviously, to get lost. And we regularly got chased by a Pizza man on his motorbike. I can assure you no-one provoked him first.
But the funniest thing that ever happened to me on a bike was probably the only funny cycling experience I was involved in that I didn’t enjoy at the time. Let me explain.
I was 15 years old, and my mates had found a ditch and were jumping over it on their bikes. I thought it looked easy, so I had a go. Unfortunately, I didn’t ‘wheelie’ over the divot before the ditch. I assumed I was going fast enough to soar over like Evil Knievil, the famous stunt man. I was wrong. When my front wheel hit the far side of the ditch, the bike and I turned a few somersaults, before coming to a stop. I wasn’t hurt at all, which was lucky because my friends were in no position to help. They were all on the floor, rolling around, with tears of laughter in their eyes.
“It’s pulled his pants down!”, someone cried, ecstatically.
And yes – in the tumble, my bicycle had conspired to pull my trousers and underpants down, leaving my bare bum hanging out in the breeze, while the rest of my limbs were tangled up in the frame of the bicycle, its back wheel spinning mockingly.
I laughed in the end, and I still laugh when I think of it now. So what’s the funniest thing that ever happened to you on a bike?