Results 1 to 28 of 28
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    46

    Upset Colleagues - Rant

    Yesterday I got into a heated argument with co-workers of mine. I am mostly and adventure racer, but have an addiction to mountain biking. I wish I was better at it, but hey...I love it. What's worse is that I did get terribly injured a few weeks ago, but if my balance was actually working there is nothing that I would like to do then get on my bike. Then yesterday the team Captain from Team Nike gets injured during an adv. race and I shared it with my co-workers. Oh, boy! Big Mistake. The flood gates opened about how dangerous adventure racing was and especially mountain biking and blah, blah, blah. Holy smokes! Even when I mentioned more people died and got injured doing "mainstream" sports, it didn't matter. What a bunch of closed-minded people. All they seemed set on doing is putting down my sport no matter what the stats are.

    Sorry had to vent. Does anybody else face these type of people in their professional work environment? If so, does anybody have any creative ways in dealing with them?

  2. #2
    abolisher of A$$holes
    Reputation: irieness's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    1,431
    I don't work in a "professional" environment...and hope I never do, I wouldn't cut it...but for those people who sit behind a desk and put down someone's passion for living life...no matter how dangerous it is...well, all I can say is to feel sorry for them...because they will never understand what it is to actually LIVE...

    sorry you have to deal with them...but I'd say laugh it off...for they are the insane ones...
    props to you on adventure racing...I wish I could pull that kind of strength out of myself to do it...

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    324
    Quote Originally Posted by LostSheep
    Does anybody else face these type of people in their professional work environment? If so, does anybody have any creative ways in dealing with them?
    Yeah, I pretty much have stopped discussing what I do for fun (mtn biking, backcountry skiing, solo camping, running, etc) with people outside of those realms. I find that they just don't get it and probably never will. This is fine by me. We have pleasant exchanges...I just leave it at, "Yeah it was a good weekend". I actually had a co-worker tell me that my uterus is going to fall out from all the running I do. She was serious. I just smiled.

  4. #4
    Dirtmistress
    Reputation: dirtmistress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    511

    I agree.

    When you deal with couch potatoes, slugs, inactive slobs, it's hard to convey your passion. They don't get it. I'm lucky to work with people that seem to be impressed with my cycling. Just the very fact that I do it. Some ask advice or share an accomplishment. In your situation, you need to tell them, if you have the guts or want to even deal with it, that they will never "get it" and to not put down something they know nothing about!
    Better yet, talk to them on their level. How was The Simpsons last night, which is better,Pabst or Schlitz or Bud and do they deep fry their tater tots or microwave them.
    Yeah...just change the subject to that and let it go. Co-workers like that need to stay at arms length.
    WWXD.
    What would Xena do?
    She used to clean the whole trail.

  5. #5
    life is a barrel o'fun
    Reputation: Christine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,507
    God, I *hate* when that happens. Not half an hour into a jog around the park, >>splat!!<< there goes my uterus again, dammit. It's very awkward sticking that thing back in.

    At least when biking, the seat keeps it in place.
    "We sat outside the dentist, tooting a horn on the guy's bike."-overheard in the Underground

  6. #6
    Bike to the Bone...
    Reputation: rzozaya1969's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    8,293
    I think that the only people that will understand why we get so passionate about mtb are people that have a passion for an activity, whatever it may be. A lot of people that I talked to after I started cycling seemed to say: 'I did that a while ago. I got into a horrible accident. I don't do it anymore. You can get hurt' etc. etc.

  7. #7
    44.951909NRTH
    Reputation: Old Bag's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    50

    Hilarious -- I needed tha

    Quote Originally Posted by Christine
    God, I *hate* when that happens. Not half an hour into a jog around the park, >>splat!!<< there goes my uterus again, dammit. It's very awkward sticking that thing back in.

    At least when biking, the seat keeps it in place.
    ROTFLMAO!

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: connie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    1,837
    Quote Originally Posted by -kelly-
    Yeah, I pretty much have stopped discussing what I do for fun (mtn biking, backcountry skiing, solo camping, running, etc) with people outside of those realms. I find that they just don't get it and probably never will. This is fine by me. We have pleasant exchanges...I just leave it at, "Yeah it was a good weekend". I actually had a co-worker tell me that my uterus is going to fall out from all the running I do. She was serious. I just smiled.

    Bwa!!! I think I'd say - wow, that would be a relief - I guess I wouldn't have to worry about birth control anymore then! ... cue jumping in to the other topic my co-workers think I'm insane about. "What do you mean you and your husband are NEVER having children?"


    I will say that most of my co-workers are pretty understanding. I've had a few knee surgeries, and I do know a lot of people who think that after knee surgery, you should be sitting in the sofa for the rest of your life and they don't get why I do my rehab to get back to sports. Heck, my parents said they were happy when I blew my knee like 6 years ago because "now you won't do any of those crazy sports ever again". Yeah right.

  9. #9
    consistent default champ
    Reputation: brownieinSC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    747

    Only a few like that

    Most think I have a screw or two lose (esp because I go alone sometimes. They also think backpacking is crazy because I am sleeping in the woods when I have a perfectly good house. On the other hand, several of my coworkers ask me about past races, if I went riding last weekend, etc.
    Either don't talk to them about it or make the stories sound horrific so you can enjoy their expressions. Adrenaline rushes are good for the soul

  10. #10
    it's not about the bike
    Reputation: trailgirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    92
    There was a guy in my office who was pissed that Lance Armstrong was Sports IIllustrated's "athlete of they year" a while back.

    He said "there is nothing athletic about riding a bike, it just takes endurance" -- his words, not mine. Then he went on to say "if I wanna watch someone ride a bike, I'll go next door and watch the neighbor kids ride around on their tricycles".

    Needless to say, I was more than a little burned by that comment.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    1,593
    If you think their reaction to you riding mtb is bad then don't ever tell them if you do any recreational shooting that will drive them totally insane.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: gmats's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    3,020
    You know, it's interesting reading your post. You were arguing with someone who seemed like didn't have a clue. Yes, that was close minded. Let's look at it another way.

    Everyone out there has "passion" for something. Or as my co-worker and I say, everyone geeks out on something. It's each and every person's porn. In the end, people don't have to like what I like or I don't have to like what they like. I often try to take what they like and see some kind of fascination for it. Not everyone is as open minded as I am so I of course get wierd looks and discussions about my passions - Mountain biking, golf, and tinkering with anything mechanical (cars especially). People are often making fun of me regarding golf or mountain biking. Oh well. Each and his/her own porn...........Why. Even shopping is a hobby for people. I know this all too well. I took a trip back in April to watch the Masters Golf tournament in Augusta. I travelled 1000's of miles and spent 4 hours watching the Masters. Most of the other 2 weeks was spent walking around outlet malls and shopping malls. See my point??

    aloha,
    g

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MidAtlanticXCer's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    256

    grin like a mad woman

    I talk up the wild, death-defying, heinous and exhausting aspects of the sport, just for the horrified and fascinated reactions I get. It is too fun and I always look forward to lunch on Mondays so that I can regale my coworkers with the latest riding stories.

    Between Mountain Biking, kid stories, and my continuing series "Adventures at the Emergency Vet, or How I am Single-handedly Paying My Vet's Daughter's College Tuition", we never have a lack of topics over lunch.
    If you are only as old as you feel, I'm 101

  14. #14
    brg
    brg is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation: brg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    729

    been there...

    I remember I was relating an mountaineering incident to my boss.

    I didn't kick my crampons hard enough into the ice and slipped and fell. I was tied into a group of 3 other people and I was able to self arrest and stop my fall. Nothing like hanging by your ice axe @ 13,000 ft. exciting to say the least.

    So I was telling my boss about this and he said "If you were my wife I'd divorce you! You should be staying at home, sitting on the couch, watching TV and being safe like everyone else"

    I just looked at his pudgy belly - made eye contact and smiled and walked away.

    This was when I was living in Dallas, Tx - now that I live in Boulder, CO that would be such a minor incident to my friends.

    And sad to say - I know a lady that was killed (hit by a car) while crossing the street to go to her child's Christmas play. I mean who would've imagined that??

    makes me appreciate EVERY second of my life - bumps, bruises, broken bones and scary incidents included!

  15. #15
    pewpewpew Moderator
    Reputation: Impy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    4,135
    Quote Originally Posted by LostSheep

    Sorry had to vent. Does anybody else face these type of people in their professional work environment? If so, does anybody have any creative ways in dealing with them?
    The easiest way is to just not bring it up, if you know they are going to be hostile about it. It's probably not worth the time and aggravation to try and explain. What will eventually get people's attention is all the cool places and parks and such that you see that they will never see. I know more about parks and trails in places I visit than most (non-biking) people who live there.

    Next easiest is to point out that statistically people are much more likely to die from a heart attack than die mountain biking, and then ask why they don't exercise. (I bet they don't because anyone with a passion for working out likely would understand MTB passion).

    But I bet all in all, it's a losing battle. People who feel compelled to put down something that you so obviously love in front of you have other issues going on, whether it's jealousy or fear or whatever.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,822
    I feel for ya. I think we've all dealt w/ that sort of thing at one time or another. Had one guy a couple days after he started in my office tell me that cycling wasn't a sport because it wasn't an organized sport, didn't need a coach, not part of a team, etc... (he actually said this stuff). Of course I proved him wrong on EVERY count and every definition of a sport that he came up w/ I proved him that cycling had. He finally got fed up and just told me that cycling wasn't a sport period! One of my favorite statements from him was that it didn't take much to get into cycling shape and that he could be as good as me within a month. (BAWAHAHAHAHAHA......) Of course I offered to loan him a bike to ride w/ me sometime but he never took me up on it. The next yr some little cutie took him out to a trail system that I won't ride because it's too flat and boring for my taste and thoroughly kicked his a$$ all over the place!!!

    Had one guy tell me cyclist had NO right to be on the road and he didn't care what the law said. We slow down traffic too much and a driver had a right to run us off the road to keep traffic flowing. My reply? "Fine.....Just remember that when your 12 yr old daughter is riding her bike over to her friends house and some a-hole like you runs her off the road to "keep traffic moving"." He got mad and shut up pretty fast over that one.

    Another guy USE to threaten to run me off the road until I finally told him to go ahead. I liked his house and that there were MORE than enough witnesses (that didn't like him) around the office that would testify against him in court to the "threats" he made against me. Hasn't said a word since.

  17. #17
    Complete Bastard
    Reputation: mward's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    2,282
    I have this idea, maybe a theory, you could call it. It says that you have to put yourself in harms way rather frequently to remind yourself you're alive. I'm probably not wording it right. None of us puts themselves in harms way consciously, but I think if you don't live on the edge a little, scare yourself, get the adrenaline flowing, you're dead. You're dead meat that is walking around talking and holding down a job but you might as well be dead, because you're dead inside. These people who don't get it that you mountain bike, they're dead. They also like being dead because they don't know any better, and they don't like you telling them about not being dead, because it forces them, just a little, to face the fact that they're dead and could choose not to be. Most of America is dead, and they'll gladly give up everything to be 'safe'. It's crap, I know, but that's the herd we gotta live in. Gross! I haven't had any coffee yet, so I hope that makes sense.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,822
    Quote Originally Posted by mward
    Most of America is dead, and they'll gladly give up everything to be 'safe'.
    Gawd, your not kidding!!!! Mandatory seatbelt/helmet laws, Gun banning nuts, Got a cut??? Neosporian (sp???) FAST or may DIE!!!! Air bags...I hate those things. Can you even buy firecrackers anymore???? Putting too much trust into public servents instead of using your own head. Where's my lawn darts?????

  19. #19
    ride like a girl
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    329
    I'm sorry you had to deal with that. I work at a bike shop, so I'm surrounded by people who are always talking about riding, and asking how my last adventure race went. People who think riding scars are cool.

    I'm always intrigued by people's skewed view of risk. There is real risk and perceived risk. Very often, we have them totally out of balance. For instance, our perceived risk of driving a car is very low, when in fact the real risk is very high. Mountain biking is the opposite. People who don't do it have a high perceived risk of it, when in reality the real risk is quite low. Your co-workers are in far more danger of being hurt on their drive to work than you are on your ride after work.
    Though she be but little, she is fierce.
    William Shakespeare, MSND

  20. #20
    ...
    Reputation: CDtofer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    1,319

    You nailed it with this comment...

    Quote Originally Posted by mward
    I have this idea, maybe a theory, you could call it. It says that you have to put yourself in harms way rather frequently to remind yourself you're alive. I'm probably not wording it right. None of us puts themselves in harms way consciously, but I think if you don't live on the edge a little, scare yourself, get the adrenaline flowing, you're dead. You're dead meat that is walking around talking and holding down a job but you might as well be dead, because you're dead inside. These people who don't get it that you mountain bike, they're dead. They also like being dead because they don't know any better, and they don't like you telling them about not being dead, because it forces them, just a little, to face the fact that they're dead and could choose not to be. Most of America is dead, and they'll gladly give up everything to be 'safe'. It's crap, I know, but that's the herd we gotta live in. Gross! I haven't had any coffee yet, so I hope that makes sense.
    I think you worded it pretty well for no coffee. In response to the OP I think this has a lot to do with the negative reaction. People dont want to hear that someone is out doing something when they are sitting around at home on their couches. You are reminding them that they are not really living their lives and this hurts. I dont mean to put anybody down but the vast majority of couch potatoes are not happy with themselves and dont want to hear about the goals that someone is achieving. I myself dont really care what co-workers think. I like to come in with my bandages and bruises and gross out the ones that think Im the biggest nutter. Its a little bit like Fight Club, I just dont care that they think Im crazy. I remember what all my ex-coworkers thought when I started riding to work during the summer in Phoenix. The looks on their faces were precious! The Area Sales Manager actually took me out to lunch to ask what was wrong with me, and he thought I had a problem. To quote Bugs, "What a maroon!" The ones that dont think Im totally nuts are the only ones I want to converse with outside a purely business setting anyways, so by flying the freak flag high I learn who its worthwhile to go to lunch with or have a beer with after work.

    Works for me...

  21. #21
    Slothful dirt hippie
    Reputation: verslowrdr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    2,812
    If you think biking puts you on the fringe of office conversations, try being a dog musher. At least my scabs and scars prove I'm not MAKING the dogs run (they're generally due to inadiquate brakes or other control devices failing when the team goes stratospheric-nuts).

    Anyway, give we wild places any weekend over another evening of crappy sitcoms. They'll have to tell their grandchildren about this great series on cable back in 2003... I'll be talking about a three dog team running into a skunk at night.

  22. #22
    Trail Goddess
    Reputation: Fiona's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    988

    My empathy

    I was told that "my husband and I needed to grow up and quit trying to pretend we were still kids" by one of my coworkers. She is currently undergoing yet another batch of physical therapy due to her very sedantary lifestyle. It amazes me how people slam what they don't get. Narrow mindedness is so rampant too. Oh, well!! Sigh!! My advise is to remind yourself what it is that you enjoy so much about riding and remember that they haven;t experienced it. Then, pity the poor little things for not having a "REAL LIFE".

    Fiona
    Come to the Dark Side, we have cookies!!

  23. #23
    Complete Bastard
    Reputation: mward's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    2,282
    Pity for them is nice, but it's more satisfying to call em fatties and point out that the reason they're so effed up is because they're couch potatos who eat fast food all the time. Besides, after you say that it's not like they're going to chase you down. They'd be done in 10 ft. hahaha! Dangit I'm goin' to hell. Sorry Jesus.

  24. #24
    Slothful dirt hippie
    Reputation: verslowrdr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    2,812
    Quote Originally Posted by Fiona
    I was told that "my husband and I needed to grow up and quit trying to pretend we were still kids" by one of my coworkers....
    Oy, for a dollar every time I've gotten this comment myself! Random comebacks:
    "So when we grow up, THEN what will we do?"
    "But what kind of fun would THAT be?"
    "Yeah, I'm thinking about slowing down and getting fat and boring like everyone else."
    "But my childhood has gotten so much better since college!"
    "You're right. Network TV is SO much better than going outside and getting some exercise."
    "But if I grew up, I wouldn't be able to do this!" (Use fingers and tounge to make the silliest face imaginable)

    The latter one has a tendency to put a moretorium on such stupid comments when performed in an uptight professional office environment. Ask me how I know.

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    46

    Thanks

    Thanks everyone for sharing your co-worker tales. I still remember so vividly in my head when I asked this particular one what he was passionate about or what sport he enjoyed. He looked at me and flat out told me he did "Adv Housing" that he had a wife, son and house and he had no time for anything else. We've talked about our little argument in the last couple of days and as most people suggested here, it is better to just make a joke and laugh it off. Some people will never understand....

  26. #26
    Don't worry, be happy!
    Reputation: formica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    7,852
    wow, this is scary stuff! What kind of places do you all work at? I'm pretty fortunate in that my work is outdoors related so no one thinks twice about my crazy biking antics.

    formica

  27. #27
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    399
    Quote Originally Posted by Impy
    Next easiest is to point out that statistically people are much more likely to die from a heart attack than die mountain biking, and then ask why they don't exercise. (I bet they don't because anyone with a passion for working out likely would understand MTB passion).
    Thats exactly what I was thinking. My girlfriend (yes I'm lurking) is a nurse and used to work in a unit that treated post operative heart patients. She tried a few times to explain to the family that bringing in a box of donuts as a treat wasn't appropriate. That they really need to take a hard look at their lifestyle and make some changes. She usually got the patronizing responce that because she is fit she doesn't understand.

    Needless to say even with the drug addicts she likes Emerg alot more than the post operative unit...

  28. #28
    Bike to the Bone...
    Reputation: rzozaya1969's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    8,293
    Actually, I kind of get two different responses. One is: it's great, and others just don't get it. Specially when we talk about how much I have invested in bike stuff...

    The ones I get tired of hearing are the 'I've done it until I had this great fall, and don't do it anymore'.

Members who have read this thread: 0

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •