Sunday, June 1, 2008

An Open Letter to Velo News : The Journal of Competitive Men

Dear Velo News,

I'm sick of seeing man after man after man across the pages of your commercial "Journal of Competitive Cycling".

Now I'm not what you call a long term reader of your magazine, but wanting to see what all the fuss, gloss and color are about, I picked up two copies from the local supermarket during grocery shopping, over a period of maybe 2-3 weeks.

If you want to know how bad this problem is, here, I inspected two issues from the recent past, Vol 37, no. 7 and 8 dated April 29 and May 13.

In 98 pages of no.7 above, 2 teeny weeny sections on 2 pages were devoted to female pros.

In 110 pages of no. 8 above, one, I repeat, just one page was devoted to women.

Whats worse, it was an ad for Continental tires that featured two of the most ugliest, wicked looking, fattest women I have seen in my entire life. It beats me how they can promote tires!

After seeing that, I had to puke my Cliff Bars out, the only time I have ever thrown up such magnificent food.

If this is some weird ploy to promote chastity among men so that, you know, they can ride more, its not working my friend.

Infact, I even hear that British racer Robert Millar had serious doubts about himself, and even ended up changing his sex because he was unfortunately given a diet of your magazines to read.

Now it is likely that I may have missed some tiny bits of text on women's racing here and there, but where are the pictures?

Where is the women's Ronde Van Vlaanderen, the La Fleche Wallonne? Where's Nicole Cooke and her cute smile? Where's the one about the Vanderkitten Liz Hatch? Did you guys seriously miss the train or are you paranoid about talking to females?

I'm sick of seeing Boonen, Boonen, Boonen. He can go to hell (he did go to hell and win there too, sigh!). My girlfriend tells me he looks like an alien anyway.

And brainwashing us with color and gloss so you can get us to stare at men is not catching on with me, I see enough of them on the local race circuit.

We return home, tired after the races, and want to read something pleasing to the eyes. Instead, there is a testosterone epidemic across your pages and you have conveniently ignored the estrogen.

You may think I drank a little too much coffee today but Rachel's blog has discovered it too. Read : Where's the Women At?

This is no Journal of Competitive Cycling. This is Journal of Competitive Crap. Men's crap.

I'm not asking anyone to make a porn magazine here. At a time when the onus is on the media to promote women's cycling here and elsewhere, the status quo is conveniently preserved.

Thankfully, I won't make the mistake of putting 5 dollars down for your "Journal" anymore. Its too much money. I can buy a whole bar of Hershey's chocolate with that.

Instead, I'll just visit your internet portal.

Its free.

* * *


Rachel said...


You put that better than I ever could have. Thanks.

Fitarella said...

Excellent letter! I'm not a cyclist, but am a woman and I appreciate you speaking up.

Anonymous said...

Good ideas, definitely moving in the right direction. There's too much dick racing and little chick racing.

Anonymous said...

I have been on the forums before. I realized its not the place for me. Most of people you describe are just old bastards who don't ride bikes and think they're the next best thing after lance armstrong. I think its a midlife crisis.