I've been thinking a lot about gear this week after a friend of mine crashed in jeans and sneakers and realised that I've gone full circle on the whole issue.
When I signed on to this board 4 or 5 years ago, I'd just come back to riding after being away for about 20 years. Back then, t-shirt, shorts and flip-flops were pretty much the norm and we were really poorly educated on gear.
I started joining newb friendly rides to meet other riders and get back some of my riding abilities, and privately laughed at all of the "power rangers" posing in their pretty leather suits.
Every now and then some concerned citizen would bend my ear about riding in my steel-toes and jeans and basic (but cool looking) leather jacket without any gloves. I'd think silently to myself, yeah, right, whatever, and go on my happy ignorant way.
Well, 5 years later, I've seen a few peaople crash on rides, myself included, and I'm happy to say I have built up a few complete sets of riding gear over the years to cater for a variety of year-round riding conditions. Funny how being informed and educated about something so obvious to me now crept up on me while I wasn't paying attention.
Now I find I'm that concerned citizen nagging at my fellow riders to get some gear and reduce the amount of hurtiness that comes from some aspects of riding.
So if I walk up to you and start spouting off about the merits of having gear, please understand I don't really care what your opinion is. I'm just blathering away to hear the sound of my own voice to make myself feel more important. Nod, smile, humour me and feel free to walk away shaking your head