In a stunning scientific breakthrough, researchers have announced the discovery of a link between wearing tight, brightly coloured lycra and a drastic reduction of mental function, common sense and understanding of the laws of physics.
The results of the study were released at a press conference where head of the project, Dr. Karl Hassfahrrader, briefed those present on the background of the study.
“I had a colleague who began cycling to work every day. He was a very nice chap to work with, but as soon as he changed into his bright yellow and red cycle shorts to ride home at night, he turned into an insufferable pillock.
“It was when I found myself contemplating just running the arrogant little bastard over after he constantly kept cutting me off in the parking lot that I decided to investigate further.
“The whole concept of ‘staying out of the way of big things that can hurt you’ seems to dissolve into a cloud of self-righteousness when you put on lycra. The idea that if you can’t keep up with the flow of traffic, then you get out of the way is replaced by reasoning that says “I can’t keep up with the traffic, so the traffic should just slow down behind me” takes over. This is more noticeable when two or more lycra-wearers get together, despite the fact that any one of the vehicles behind could turn the lycra-clad idiots into a tangled mess of horrendous fluoro colours, intestines and bits of iPod.
“They are the most vulnerable road users, and yet they act like they are some kind of lycra-encased immortals. We wanted to find out why, so we embarked on this project.
“Quite frankly, the results startled us…”
Before we go any further, a warning: many experiments were carried out on live animals in the course of this study. What you are about to read may disturb you.
The early experiments involved rats that were forced to wear tackle-crushingly tight lycra shorts. Instant changes in their behaviour were observed. The normally mild-mannered lab rats became pushy, arrogant and blindly ignorant to anything around them.
When a group of lycraed and non-lycraed rats were introduced to a maze, the lycraed rats would immediately push their way to the front of the queue and then proceed to wobble slowly off in front of all the other rats, holding the entire queue up.
Should one of the non-lycraed rats attempt to pass, the lycraed rats would become inexplicably enraged and make all manner of rude gestures and aggressive chattering sounds.
The next set of experiments involved a number of dogs dressed head to toe in the latest sickeningly trendy, horrifically tight and retina-searingly bright cycling clothes in combinations of colours that are actually illegal in most civilised countries. When the dogs were first dressed in the unspeakable clothing, their instant reaction was to try and get them off again. When this proved impossible the majority of the subjects tried to escape from the view of others. When this wasn’t allowed, most simply huddled in a corner, whimpering miserably.
This carried on until what became known as the “Lycra Effect” took hold and destroyed the part of the brain that controls embarrassment, good taste, modesty and common sense. Then the dogs started to enjoy being seen in lycra. They would refuse to take it off, especially when near a cafe with outdoor seating. If allowed, they would instantly leap on to a seat, order a non-fat latte and position themselves perfectly so that unwitting passers-by could not help but see the unsettling effects a bicycle seat can have on male genitalia.
The last group of test subjects were Chimpanzees. The chimps were not only dressed in lycra, they also wore flimsy polystyrene helmets specifically designed to make them look ridiculous, while at the same time offering minimal crash protection.
Chimp-sized bicycles were placed in with both the lycraed chimps and a control group of non-lycraed chimps. The non-lycraed chimps largely ignored the bicycles, preferring instead to walk wherever they wanted to go. One simply threw a bit of poo at them.
The lycra-wearing chimps however had a far different reaction. Once the Lycra Effect had kicked in, the chimps charged for the bicycles and proceeded to tear around the test area completely oblivious to their own safety of the safety of others, two, three and sometimes even four abreast. The Lycra Effect seemed to be magnified when combined with the flimsy polystyrene helmet to produce a completely misguided sense of invulnerability in the chimps.
Another symptom of the Lycra Effect noted in the chimps was extreme self-righteousness — many of the chimps pretended to be riding the bicycle for the good of the environment, while a few claimed health and fitness reasons. Some just threw a bit of poo.
Although the poo-throwing was present in both groups of chimps, scientists noted that the instances of poo-throwing increased in proportion to increases in other obnoxious behaviour as the Lycra Effect took hold. This led scientists to theorise that that talking loudly on a mobile phone while sitting outside a cafe sipping a non-fat latte and still wearing your cycle helmet IS in fact the human equivalent of a chimpanzee throwing a bit of poo.
While this study throws light on to why people wearing lycra and riding bikes act like total knobs, further study is required to discover the mental defect required to actually want to wear the stuff in the first place.
Although the study produced fairly conclusive results, there is still one area that causes confusion and controversy in the scientific community according to Dr. Hassfahrrader.
“The biggest thing that still confuses us is that scooter riders, even though they generally don’t wear lycra, still act like such utter cocks…”