I’ve never done a panel talk before. It vaguely exciting, like a poor man’s question time. The topic of this one was pain and suffering. Most of my contributions were based around the narrative of pain, versus actual pain, among with some reflections on authenticity and masculinity. Basically, life was easier for grandparents because they worked really hard (therefore it was immeasurably harder). Nowadays work is not often physically demanding, therefore we displace our desire to be tested onto other things. Endurance or short distance cycling is a useful and vicarious proxy. It can actually hurt though, and watching it hurt other people is a lot of fun. There were some other esteemed people on the panel, Pip Adkins, who organises the Bristol Grand Prix, Martin Hurcombe who is an academic and interested in cycling and culture, and Jason Yon, who works for the secret squirrel thing and is an engineer. It was nice to be involved and I really enjoyed it.