...were the words some schoolkid shouted at me a few years ago while cycling with a helmet. I didn't mind what he said, in actual fact, he was quite right, I did look like something from a Ridley Scott outtake with sweat pouring down my face.
A few months later I stopped wearing one, not because I was sensitive to the occasional insult thrown my way, but to the false sense of security it was providing.
Cycling on main roads is a daunting experience for most cyclists, especially in school rushhour with the blind panic of a herd of women rushing to pick up their precious cargo of spawn.
Would a helmet have protected me from the juggernaut that didn't stop at the roundabout I was traversing?
Would a helmet have protected me from the car that overtook me through a width restriction speed calming measure?
Would a helmet have protected me from the juggernaut that simply didn't give me enough room on the bend?
Would a helmet have protected me from the car that overtook me and then suddenly braked and turned sharply left in front of me?
The answer to all those questions is quite simply, no.
One of my personal objections to wearing a cycling helmet is not that it is an infringements of my individual rights, or that it look silly, it's the epitome of all that is wrong with the risk adverse, health and safety legislation that we are being subjected to on a daily basis.
Talk to some people that you do not wear a helmet and the response is a sharp intake of breath, a barrage of meaningless statistics and a wagging finger.
The unintended consequences of threatening people with immediate death if you do not wear a helmet is the fact that a false sense of security is nurtured within people believing that the safety gear makes them invincible to fast moving, solid objects.
Some people don the hi-vis vests and believe they are wearing the Breastplate Armour of Invicibility.
Some people don the alien helmet and believe they have been blessed with the Helm of Righteousness.
Some people don the cycling handwear and believe they are wearing the magic Gloves of Sauron.
The people I know that wear this gear, often jump on their bikes and cycle on the roads without a care, going through red lights, chatting away and paying no attention to what is behind them, in front of them and what is overtaking them.
By wearing all this protective gear they think they are shrouded in a magical force field that enables them to cycle through a roundabout in front of a 30 tonne juggernaut which will simply stop in a Matrix-esque "bullet time" fashion while the cycling hero darts in between Agents Ford, Daewoo and Audi unscathed.
No. Ears and eyes, concentration and a constant reminder: you are the bottom feeder in this maelstrom of deadly missiles.
If I hear a lorry behind me impatiently trying to overtake, do I adopt the attitude of "It's my right to be on the road"? No. I pull over and let him pass.
If I see a width restriction or a parked car in front of me, do I pull out? No. I look behind me and with plenty of time, indicate and pull out slowly. If the person hasn't seen me or I suspect will ignore me, I will stop on the side of the road.
If I approach a side road or a supermarket entrance, will I have a quick look around and carry on cycling? No. I slow down, look behind me, move out to the middle of the road and cover the brakes.
Cycling is great fun, even on the roads but I wouldn't cycle in busy city centres or dual carriageways if I could travel on quieter roads.
It's all about awareness of other drivers, their viewpoint and your own actions. Wearing all the safety gear does not absolve you of these responsibilities, nor does it make you invincible.