1760. Penny-farthing excursions
© Bruce Goodman 13 March 2020
I saved up money for a considerable time to purchase a penny-farthing. My wife wanted a new set of pots for the kitchen, but first things first. Nearly every male of age in this town is out and about on their penny-farthing every Sunday afternoon. My wife wanted to try riding it and I said, “Goodness me no, darling. Not in that dress!” Before one could blink the hem of her skirt would get tangled in the spokes of the wheel. And what a disaster! How very unlady-like! Of course, it would be my entire fault letting a woman onto what is clearly designed for the male anatomy. It’s a bit like riding a horse. But on a horse women ride side-saddle, and one could hardly expect a woman to ride side-saddle on a penny-farthing. How would one peddle?|
The first time I went out (of course I’d been practising my balance in the backyard behind the house) I went with three friends on a Sunday jaunt. Such freedom! Such speed! The second time I went out was the last. I was with a larger group. We bicycled I suppose ten miles into the country and back. It was a wonderful experience.
As I said, that was the last time I went out on the penny-farthing. I wouldn’t be seen dead on it these days. You see, my wife and her so-called emancipated friends made fun of my tight pants.
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