A blog about cars in Aberdeen.

This is a blog about cars in Aberdeen because most people aspire to the convenience of personal motor transport, pay dearly for the privilege, provide much employment, contribute greatly in taxes, and then people expect them to ‘leave the car at home’, while their money is spent creating cycle lanes and the like for freeloading cyclists.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

The pro-motoring "Aberdeen Citizen"

From "Amsterdamize"
Not the sort of thing
we want to see here!
Last week, we came over all worried and insecure about the prospect of cycling reaching a 10% modal share by 2020. This, because of an 18% year-on-year increase in the number of cycling journeys undertaken in Aberdeen, puts cycling on track to achieve continental-style levels within a frighteningly near time-span. Shortly, if we're not careful, getting around in Aberdeen "City and Shire" will be a journey through an urban transport landscape resembling that of Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Barcelona, New York, Portland, Tallin or Vancouver, not to mention Vienna or Malmö Lund.

If you can steel yourself to click those links you'll see lots of happy, fit, foreign people of all ages efficiently getting around on inexpensive-looking and old bikes. These people have confusingly different styles and bafflingly different outlooks on life which are difficult for us to immediately read - we can't tell what sort of attitudes they have, for they have no car to tell us what sort of people they are. Chilling. We comfort ourselves with the thought that they're probably all quite poor, poorer than us, anyway. If they weren't poor, they'd have a car, wouldn't they? Stands to reason. Also, none of these people are fat. That just confirms how poor they are.

To us, it looks like these foreign cyclists all have too much time on their hands. And they look as if they're enjoying it! Disgusting! Not the sort of thing which is at all suitable for Aberdeen "City and Shire"; carefree and whimsical ways of getting about are in stark contrast to our very serious grown-up attitudes to transport as we sit frowning in grim concentration behind the wheel; safely strapped to our chairs in extreme comfort in our cozy, locked metal boxes; fretting about our schedules and our overdrafts. As we wait in line at the Haudagain roundabout, we can judge our position in the socio-economic hierarchy simply by reading the marque-badges of the vehicles in the congestion queue around us. This either fills us with smug satisfaction (for our boot-lid sports more of the letters and numbers which make us feel important), or spurs us on to greater efforts of boss-flattery and money-go-round hamster-wheel spinning in our 50 hour-week cubicle-jockey spreadsheet-wrangling professional life.

That's why we were so happy when we saw that the Aberdeen Citizen freesheet had cleverly managed to put a pro-motoring anti-cyclist spin on its reportage of the 18% year on year increase in cycling numbers in Aberdeen:

"Tiring, dangerous and uncomfortable", the masochists in clown outfits are easy to despise, particularly as they are jeopardising the work to repair the potholes. Apparently.

We applaud the Aberdeen Citizen for making cycling look dangerous and masochistic, making cyclists look stupid and making cycling advocates look like freeloading dogs-in-mangers. This will increase motorists righteous indignation against cycling and cyclists and so lead to more combative road use by motorists which will, in turn, dissuade cycling. Result!

That way we can stay angry, fat, aggressive, selfish, self-righteous, stressed and expensive in our nice cars. Comforting.


  1. Good post on what is a typically rubbish piece of journalism. Write to the paper and invite them to actually try cycling. They might find they....SHOCK HORROR...enjoy it! :-)

    Mind you, doing anything in Aberdeen must be grim..... ;-)

  2. That is utterly shocking, next you know someone will be starting an Aberdeen Cycle Chic blog! Just think of the horror of it, well dresses Aberdonians on bicycle and not in flash cars. Fortunately Aberdeen council will do its up most to stop such things happening ensuring Aberdeen remains as cycle and pedestrian unfriendly as possible. I mean heaven forbid the Beach Boulevard should ever be allowed to become a pleasant place to walk and cycle (the way it would be in other cities), when it can be kept as a race track for little boy with their "hot hatches"...