Thursday, August 19

Bike Theft. Happy Ending!

Inspired by the reverse-bike-thief currently terrorizing the streets of NYC, I thought today I would recount (one of) my very own bike theft sagas. It begins around six pm on a Thursday in spring, I was preparing to mount my trusty Bridgestone MB5 when I realized the tires were a little low. My pump was just inside the basement door, I was sure the bike would be fine for the thirty seconds it might take to duck inside...

As I turned my back and stepped down into the basement I heard the screech of bike tires, a clamor, and a pitter-patter. I turned just in time to see my own back wheel slipping past the open door. I decided in that moment, "I will not lose my bike today." Pump in hand, I sprinted out the door, at first following only the scent of my wayward bike. As I spotted the thief, I shouted " You better stop! That's my bike! He's stealing my bike!" For six blocks I chased the thief on foot, his tires were treacherously low and I was out for blood. Eventually my pleas became threats, and to my surprise a truck that was traveling the opposite direction "flipped a U" the driver leaned out the window, "Hop in the bed we're gonna get you're bike back!"

So here I was, "surfing" in the back of a pickup truck, wielding a pump as my lance as we chased down the bandit. With my spirits up and in the heat of the chase I could not help but taunt the culprit, "We're gonna get you! You stole the wrong bike man!" At this point the thief was trying everything possible to get away, we chased him down alleyways and across parking lots. Before I had a chance to knock him with the pump he stopped, apparently he had realized he would not get away.

I was surprised to find that he was a middle aged man, not surprised that he smelled horrible and was apparently "tripping" on something. He insisted that I had stolen his bike, which was lying in the alley by my door where he had ditched it to steal my bike. The good Samaritan (thank you thank you!) intervened before the situation could escalate and I rode home on my bike and waited for the thief to come back for his. When he arrived I informed him that should I ever catch sight of him in my neighborhood again, I would retroactively punish him for the theft of my bike, and I am happy to report that I haven't seen him since.

So, to the dude who stopped for a good chase I say "Thank You!" That Bridgestone was the first bike I had really set up perfectly and I was so attached and though the bike may be gone (it's close, my boss now owns it) my gratitude is eternal. This experience proves it, happy endings really do happen.

Jack of All Trades

I strive in my daily life to be worthy of the title "renaissance man" or at least a Jack-of-All-Trades, capable of handling any of the many situations that may arise. To this effect I tend to repair my own things, bake my own bread, build my own bikes. I am dabble successfully in different aspects of an ever increasing sphere of interests. I find that I like bikes that fit the "renaissance mold" as well, like my current build; A 198(3?) Centurion Lemans 12...

The Lemans 12 is a great little ride with tange champion double butted tubes, lugs (ooh my favorite) and a consistently head turning paint job.  I built it up rough-stuff style with 32c 'cross tires and riser bars; fast and ready for whatever the world may bring.

Classy build includes mavic/shimano 600 wheels, 600 cranks, titanium railed flight saddle, soma late risers, and the unexpectedly awesome Mafac Racer brakes:

Nice Bike!

Though I'm still a little wary of photographing strangers bikes I'll be featuring the ones that catch my eye under the title "Nice Bike." Here we have an extremely well outfitted Peugeot; notice the wingnut skewers and the unusual squared off fender. A cool french bike for sure!

Wednesday, August 18

Boutique. California. Cycling.

(Picture not taken on the Fast Eddie Tour)

Fast Eddie Bike Tours is a really great tour company out of Sacramento, as a local concierge, I recently had the opportunity to take Eddie's "Capital City Tour." The tour was fantastic! Eddie's knowledge of Sacramento history is impressive, and the way he manages to build the tour around a narrative history is sure to please any history buffs. The ride is leisurely and Eddie's bikes are practical and stylish, the provided snack from local gourmet delicatessen Magpie Caterers was filling and delicious. Visiting Sacramento? Local history buff? Cyclist? I highly recommend you give Fast Eddie a try!

Sunday, August 8

O.G. Tweed Ride

This guy would fit right in with the current trends in cycling... He sure has a strange handlebar angle going on! Scan from a photo I picked up at "Ye Olde Antique Faire" this morning.