Wearing Little Else But Smiles, Riders Gather For London's Sixth NBR.
The clothes, the accessories, and even the gear ratios which bike messengers opt to use while working can be a famously popular port-of-call for the rookie urban cyclist in search of street-credible guidance.
Almost equally famous, perhaps, is the courier penchant for getting recreationally naked. And judging by last weekend’s events in the English capital, it would seem that partying without many clothes on at all could be the next adornment of the messenger sub-culture to go mainstream. Well, that’s our theory anyway…
Over one thousand cyclists gathered at Hyde Park last Saturday to take part in the London Naked Bike Ride, which has taken place in some semi-official shape or form annually since 2007. The event has drawn increasing numbers of garment- (and almost garment-) free riders with each passing year.
Perhaps not great news for our John Boultbee clothing label, but it was none the less heartening to see so many broken-in (and of course breathable) English leather saddles snugly cupping so many backsides on the trip.
The World Naked Bike Ride movement is a loose alliance of various interest groups, along with a smattering of people just there for the sake of riding around town in the buff.
The rides are intended to draw attention to the perceived senselessness of dependence upon non renewable fuels, as well as to promote improved safety measures for cyclists in the various cities in which the rides take place.
They also seek to convey a message about the intrinsic excellence of the human form, regardless of specific body type.
Which was doubtless a sentiment lurking somewhere in John Brooks’ subconscious when he designed a cycling saddle to re-shape in accordance with an individual owner’s needs.
All photos courtesy of Norman Craig.