Don't get me wrong, but I was pleasantly surprised to see one of our top politicians practicing what he preaches yesterday. I was on the bus heading towards the Angel, and we approached a set of traffic lights just as they were changing to green. Two cyclists were slightly caught out by this and started a little slowly, but one - riding a sleek racer - soon picked up speed and kept pace with the bus for a few yards. The other, who was perched on a far more utilitarian model, struggled slightly and laboured up the incline as the bus passed him. Something about him caught my attention; sticking out of his German army style cycling helmet could be seen unruly strands of platinum blond hair, and his head was moving from side to side as he pedalled.
I turned in my seat to look closely and was almost inclined to say something to my fellow passengers when I saw that it was your favourite and mine - Boris Johnson - muttering away to himself. Of course, along with that twat Cameron, old BJ has made a big deal out of the fact that he rides a bike, though he could hardly be called a champion of green causes, so I did wonder why he bothered. Cynical as I am, I just assumed that he didn't really ride around unless there was a posse of paps on his tail, thus maximising the photo opportunity. Like Dave, I believed that if and when he did cycle, he was supported by a large retinue of assistants, carrying his important papers and protecting him from assassination attempts.
I was mistaken. I hold my hand up. But as I said, don't get me wrong. I have no time for the man and his politics, his privileged upbringing and his lovable buffoonery.
It did strike me however, that Gordon Brown would never be seen dead on a bicycle (I hope I'm not being too horrid when I say that, for the sake of other Londoners' safety, I suppose this is a good thing) and it would indeed be an incongruous sight if he ever did get on one. As you all probably know, I do work in the Whitehall area, so often see old GB in and out of Downing Street, led by tough looking motorbike cops and a couple of Daimlers, and followed by blacked out people carriers and yet more motorbikes. So, the PM can't move without a major security operation, but the Mayor of London is OK to ride around like a naked baby through the capital's mean streets.
(sorry about the size of the pic - I'm new to yfrog and haven't worked out its mysteries yet)
It's a funny old world, I reckon.