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Bridget Jones freewheels into The Onion

In his time, Elden Nelson has written computer manuals. These are normally humour free zones but Nelson’s blog isn’t.

Calling himself The Fat Cyclist, Nelson has lodged in the blogosphere a site that is a diary of his long rides and a growing collection of spoof articles, such as the one about Phil Liggett being sacked by OLN for not mentioning Lance Armstrong enough…

Nelson’s talents have come to the attention of and he’s written two funny pieces to date, including a Tour de France quiz.

Here’s a flavour of Nelson’s blog, made even funnier if you were in France this year and were also intrigued/perturbed by the weird cyclist images used by the Champion supermarket chain, the French version of Morrison’s.


An Open Letter to "Champion: Official Supermarket of the Tour de France"

Dear Champion SuperMarket Chain,

Yesterday, I got my Guide to the Tour, a supplement to Velonews magazine. I’m pretty sure this guide is simply a translated version of the Tour Guide published in France, ads and all.

Champion, I am pleased that you are supporting the Tour, and pleased that you are the Official Supermarket of the Tour de France. Alas, since I don’t live in France, your ad never had a chance of getting me to buy anything, so you may want to reconsider how you spend your ad dollars next year. Still, If I ever go to France, now I know where to get my official Tour groceries, and that’s something. I guess.

That said, Champion, I feel I must tell you that your full-page ad in this guide has creeped me out unlike any ad I have seen in recent memory. I submit the following reasons for why:

The adult male appears to have had a frontal lobotomy. He’s looking into space and has a slack-jawed, lopsided grin. I’m confident the only reason we don’t see drool is because it has been photoshopped out. He does not make me want to buy groceries.

The adult female is wearing the strangest baseball cap I have ever seen. No, calling it a baseball cap is inappropriate, for it is clearly a spotted turban with a bill. Also, the expression on her face leads me to believe she is screaming for vengeance, which I believe is the main reason the cyclist looks so scared. She does not make me want to buy groceries, but she does make me want to buy life insurance.

The female child being held by the adult female is, I believe, a witch. Her concentrated expression and the way she is making a hand gesture while looking directly into the eyes of the (again, terrified) cyclist leads me to believe she is the instrument that will effect the vengeance her mother wants so badly. Also, the sleeve of her t-shirt puffs out as if it were inflatable. Perhaps this is a flotation function prepared against the likelihood of angry villagers trying to drown her?

The cyclist has the largest, most terrified eyes I have ever seen. He knows these people want him dead, and probably also realizes his bike is tilted so far up and to the left that there is no way he will not keel over onto his side. His terror is so great that he has forgotten to be embarassed by the fact that he’s tucked his jersey into his shorts.

The leftmost male child looks wistful, perhaps because he knows that his sister is placing a pox on the cyclist.

The rightmost male child is the only person in this photo who looks like he’s actually cheering at a cycling event. However, due to his position, orientation, and where he’s looking, he’s clearly not cheering at this cycling event. I notice, furthermore, that his left sleeve is big and puffy, in a manner similar to the way his sister’s puffs. I do not believe this child is a witch, so am now reconsidering the t-shirt-as-an-emergency-flotation-device theory. I now, instead, believe that this is how French children carry their cigarettes.

The smallest male…child?…dwarf?…mannequin?…undead zombie?…is the real crux of the problem with this ad. His head is massive, and looks 40 years old. It is also expressionless. Like most of his siblings, he’s evidently got either a life vest on under his t-shirt, or lots and lots of cigarettes rolled up under the short sleeves. This person makes me want to avoid your supermarket at all costs. In fact, he makes me afraid to go outside at all.

Champion, please believe me when I say that every single person in the United States would be better at producing ads for your supermarket than what you’ve got here. Give one of us a call; we’d be happy to help.

Kind Regards,

The Fat Cyclist…/fatcyclist

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