I’ve described how Belgians see cyclists (as men with flared trousers and waving hair). I’ve also noted how Hungarians see cyclists: (as gentlemen with suits and hats). Now, we also know how Swedes see cyclists:
Judging by this Swedish traffic sign (designed by the Swedish Transport Administration (Transportstyrelsen)), Swedish cyclists are a lot sturdier than their Belgian and Hungarian counterparts. The Swedish silhouette – with its rectangular head and massive torso – dwarfs the bike it rides. It has made me wonder who acted as model for this sign.
Most likely, the model is wearing many layers of clothes – necessary to bear the Swedish cold. The model’s hat, sweaters, and coat give the silhouette a bulky appearance. That appearance is deceiving though, because the actual cyclist underneath those layers could be anybody; a bearded lumberjack or a tall blonde.
The other explanation is the Swedish sign is modeled after the Rock Man (from the Fantastic 4 – depicted below). That seems less likely. On the other hand: Rock Man’s weight would help explain why the bike in the traffic sign has such oversize frame tubes.