There is something truly great about accumulating points. I get points for flying a certain popular airline, for instance, and while some other carriers may have a less expensive flight in certain circumstances, I usually choose my usual carrier’s flight because then I conserve my points. I do this even though having collected them thus far as gotten me absolutely nothing.
I must have the points!
Then there are the points I am earning at the track. As you can see, on my first night of racing I got 4th in my first race and 5th in another, thus earning a total of 3 points. In my road races, I currently have 36 points for the series, after a first place and a third place in the first two races.
The problem with this is that there’s a great disparity in the levels of points. True, I shop or race aggressively with them in mind, but I’m left without a concrete sense of what they’re really adding up to or how the different point values relate.
To earn frequent flier points I have to pack up some underpants and my traveling gun, then belt on my ceremonial scimitar. Next I call for my subjects to hitch up the team of steeds that pull my wheeled menagerie and we all trundle down to the airport where I finally attempt to board a flight.
To earn race points I had to buy a bike, pay to register, travel an hour or more to the site, and then ride like a man possessed nigh unto the point of evacuating my stomach’s contents. Those points are hard won, and as you can see from the track, I only have three of them.
Three precious little points!
Contrast all that with video games where I earn ten bazillion points every time I do this:
That one little button press makes this sort of thing happen:
No wonder so many people stay home and play video games instead of racing bicycles. You don’t get enough freakin’ points!
I hereby formally suggest to the powers that be in cycling that they raise the number of points you get for races. Sure, it might become unwieldy to mark down that a certain rider has 1,000,000 points for a win each week rather than 20, but we might be able to get a few more people to come out and race who would have otherwise been drooling on their Snuggies and pressing buttons.
Also they should think about including some explosions. When I cross the finish line at my next race I want to see a pyrotechnics display that would put the band KISS to shame. In fact it’d be great if the members of Kiss were there to actually perform as well.
I hope you are listening, USCF and ATRA (cycling governing bodies). This could be the ticket to taking bike racing to the next level here in the US.