Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Dog's life

Talking jokingly about a Tour de France cyclist running into a dog is even less politically correct than making disparaging remarks about the Pope's spooky eyes. But, since neither Marcus Burghardt nor the beige Labrador were injured in their spectacular collision yesterday, I take the liberty of saying that I find this sequence amusing:

Everything happened in the best possible way, as if the rider and the dog had rehearsed this crash as a stunt for a film. First, the dog moves slowly into a location where a collision with Burghardt is unavoidable. The cyclist, seeing that he can't avoid hitting the dog, brakes violently and turns his handle bars abruptly through an angle of nearly 90 degrees. At that same instant, the dog prepares itself for the impact by simply lying down flat on the road, whereby its heavy body becomes, as it were, an unmovable object, ready to absorb the considerable momentum of the moving cyclist, like a stationary rugby player about to tackle a running opponent. In such a collision, according to the physical laws of mechanics, something had to give. Fortunately, it was neither the cyclist nor the Labrador, but rather the front wheel of Burghardt's bike, which folded up like a sat-on pizza.

What I really like in this video is the way the dog gets up calmly and walks slowly away from the scene of the crash. It seems to be saying to itself, with disgust: "These days, a dog can't even cross a quiet country road without having to battle with bloody bike wheels."


  1. I'm just a psychologist for human beings and have little experience with dogs, but your interpretation of the non verbal language of this Labrador seems pretty good to me!

  2. My Sophia, partly Labrador [don't ask me how many parts], is basically the same kind of dog as the star of the cycling crash [which has surely, by now, become a highly popular video sequence right throughout the world]. So, I was simply trying to imagine what Sophia would say to herself in similar circumstances.