Today I was interviewed by journalist Jonathan Ancer for an article he is writing on fringe cycling and cyclists. He asked me what is the best chirp I have heard whilst riding my uni. I couldn’t remember a single one because there are so many. Best I ask all the uni WhatsApp groups that I have setup for unicyclists in South Africa.
If you are a non South African reader then you’ll need to understand the definition of chirp.
Verb – to speak to someone rudely or in a mocking way
Noun – a complaint or mocking comment
- “You are 50% less prone to punctures”.
- “Did your wife half your cycling budget?”.
- “Is that the front or rear wheel you were left with after the divorce?”.
- “At least you can’t get 2 tired on that thing”.
- The obvious one: “Where’s the rest of your bike, dude?”.
“Not a bike, dude!”.
- “Look! A monocle”.
- “These potholes are getting bad, this guy lost half his bike in them”.
- While on my Muni in Giba Gorge 4 mountain bikers came past and one guy said “Where’s your other wheel?”.
I replied “Messy divorce. She took half of everything. You should see my car”.
Quick as a flash one of the others chirped, “Hey dude, you should have fought harder for the bike!”.
- “Go get him boy! Don’t let that bloody bastard take your wheel like that!”.
- Whilst riding my 36er in Umhlanga a lady walking her dog commented “Ooh! You’ve got a big one!”.
I couldn’t resist replying “Not really ma’am, it’s just the lycra that makes it look like that”.
- “Somebody stole the rest of your bike”. But I’m sure everybody has heard that one.
- “Are the clowns following you?”.
- “Where’s the other wheel?”.
Standard response, “I left it at your mother’s house!”.
- Their chirp, “You are crazy”.
My response, “That is what the other voices keep telling me”.
- “Wheelie hom!” (direct Afrikaans translation – wheelie him).
- “You must spend more money to buy a whole bicycle”.
- “Do a wheelie!”.
- From a bunch of old guys playing with a Frisbee in a park when I rode past, “At least we look normal for once”.
- “You’re lying! You’re lying!”.
- Classic one, “Where’s the rest of your bike”.
My typical response: “This is all I need”.
- “You’ve lost your front wheel”.
- My typical response: “The most fun you can have on one wheel”.
- Walking out of Sun City after a gig, I was pushing both the 20″ and the 5 ft giraffe.
I heard a guy say, “There goes a man desperately in need of a welding machine” as I walked past.
- “Did you get that on a half price sale?”.
- From a bike rider, “You lost a wheel”.
The comeback, “I took the training wheel off”. Kills the conversation.
- Cause Matt and I mostly ride together, “Where’s your other wheel?”.
“His using it!”.
Or if I’m alone, “I left it at home with my handlebars”.
- A guy asked, “What tricks can I do on that thing?”.
Before thinking I said “Wheelie…ing with no hands. Can you?”.
- I tend to get circus ones, “Do you perform at parties?”.
- Shaun’s response to the “Where’s the other wheel?” chirp from our ride this weekend.
“That’s so 8 years ago”. He has been riding for 8 years.
- Onlooker, “Can you pop a wheelie?”.
“Tada!”, whilst just riding. You know level 1.
- When on my muni and someone says, “Yoh! That must be difficult!”.
I reply, “If it was easy it would be called mountain biking”.
- Not a chirp but I’ve see 2 commuting cyclists crash into each other head on because they were staring at me. Now that was funny!
- Facial expressions in some of the rural areas… Priceless!
Well that was fun!
Thanks OddWheelers for your input!