in the 150 years of bicycle history, some things haven't changed.
when commercial high wheelers and velocipede (trikes) came out, it was the rich and the elite that rode them, and the poor working man walked miles so he could feed his family.
the "safety bicycle" (closer to our modern versions) came out, the same thing happened. the elite snubbed the poor, as bikes were too costly for the average joe to buy. as better bikes became available, the rich bought new ones, usually trading their old ones in, and those, in turn, were sold cheap enough for the "common folk" to buy.
this pissed off the elitists. seeing poor people having fun doing the same thing that the uppercrust did for stature.
today, we have the lawyers and the chiropracters out on the weekends, displaying their snobbery to all those less fortunates, who can't afford a bicycle that costs more than their cars. (i think some of their spandex, multi logo, [free mobile billboards]outfits cost more than my bike.)
this kind of elitism has happened throughout the history of cycling. whenever a new breed of bicycling appeared, the rich immediately tried to claim it.
look at the first mountain bikers, riding "klunkers," modified 1 speed 1950's schwinn panthers with drum front brakes and rear coasters. today, there are mountain bikes priced well out of the reach of most normal folks, that are never ridden in the mountains.
oddly enough, it's the exact opposite with real motorcycles. most bikers look down on the "weekend warrior" types.
to sum up my little social studies/history lesson, we now have companies like Ridley, Derringer, and Stryder Rides trying, (and succeeding, in some cases,) to capitalize on this home grown hobby. i'm sure there will come a day when people willing to shell out thousands of dollars for a mass produced, over priced motor bicycle will ride in groups, and heckle the poor, downtrodden peasant on his smoky old huffy.
and i will become like mad max...
(on a side note, for an upcoming LA ride, we should buzz the Derringer Cycles "Gallery." they're open 11-5 on saturdays...