Save me from myself

Kafka\'s Doll
Kafka\'s Doll Posts: 208
edited April 2008 in Commuting chat
I've been commuting the 14 miles to work since Christmas now. I've gone through various stages of happiness with it -- all mostly positive, but a couple of things are getting on my nerves.

1) My helmet. It's a pain. It's a decent one, with good air vents, but it always feels like it's in the way. Bloody nuisance all round.

2) The boredom of a regular journey. I've now exhausted just about every possible route and the only thing I can think about is the next hill. Each ride becomes more and more nothing but a physical task.

So, I'm days away from ditching my lid and then also using headphones to listen to something. As I understand it, the consensus is that both these things are nuts safety-wise. I don't want to re-ignite the whole helmet debate thing, but can anyone give me a good argument as to why I won't feel happier without it? And, if it comes down to it, would it be safer to listen to talk radio or music?


  • abbots_mike
    abbots_mike Posts: 280
    i tend to listen to music, and i find i can hear most things as long as i
    a) use only on earplug, usually the left as i can then tell where cars are while they pass me on the right,
    b)dont use really tight fitting earplugs that block out all noise, yes you are sacrificing sound quality but you can hear both sides to an extent,
    c) don't play it too loud,
    d) check by sight more often.

    as for the helmet, i know how you feel, and only wear itr on longer journeys, despite knowing the risks. :oops:
  • always_tyred
    always_tyred Posts: 4,965

    I listen to news radio (4 &5) because I find it is less similar to traffic noise than music. It sort of feels like a bad habit, but I'm not sure how I'd manage without it.

    Kafka - couple of ideas. I'm not sure if oyu can leave your bike at work or not, or if your alternative commute is quicker, but I've found that successive cycle - bus - bus - cycle commutes can freshen you up a bit.

    Or, skip a couple of days entirely and "treat" yourself to a non-rushed cycle at the weekend in a completely different area.

    I often find that, having attempted the drone route to work (either driving or public transport) for a few days leaves me feeling like I'm missing out and reminds me how invigorating being pebble dashed by cold rain is. :-)

    Can't help you with the helmet aversion though. Is it the straps? The pads rubbing? Do you wear a back pack that rubs against it? Is it in your field of vision (I hope not because that means its in the wrong place) Is it moving about when you shoulder check and such like? (it shouldn't)The big controversy on here seems to be, "do they do any good?" Regardless of whether or not you regard them as ornamental, it should be possible to get one so that you really don't notice it.
  • TheBoyBilly
    TheBoyBilly Posts: 749
    Like Always Tyred I think a talk radio-type listening is best, at least on the road. If you are a member of a club, or know lots of other friendly cyclists ,can you ask to try out their helmets for size and comfort?
    The suggestion of laying off for a while, or bike-bus, bus-bike commute might be the answer too
    To disagree with three-fourths of the British public is one of the first requisites of sanity - Oscar Wilde
  • Kejoxen
    Kejoxen Posts: 5
    I'm learning Spanish on my commute, linguaphone all-talk on a cheap mp3 player. It seems like a reasonably advantageous use of the time.