I am getting old, and at my age I feel it’s necessary to impart wisdom. Therefore, I hope you enjoy the convoluted quasi-essay that’s about bikes but actually about life, below:
My bicycle looks like this:
It’s a heavy, metallic blue mountain bike that I ride EVERYWHERE because it is my only bike, and has been for the past eight years. Ergo very familiar, and very useful for city-riding (potholes!) (decidedly not-quick-release tires!). Also, it’s kinda heavy, so I get another workout carrying it up and down a few flights of stairs from my dorm room (I’m in college; I am so old).
This is a friend’s bike, which was so graciously lent to me for a road ride two weeks ago:
YAH. It’s significantly smaller, lighter (I was benchpressing it in one hand within minutes), and it’s so shiny and RED!! The drop-handles threw me for a moment, as did the gear-shifting mechanism, so we had a lot of false starts at the beginning of our ride (shout-out to dudes with patience!). When we actually began our ride, I was amazed by the differences between bikes. The little red bike was so light!! And I was sorely tempted to dart into and out of traffic because it was so nimble. It climbed like a bird, and we were flying down Chuck St. (hi, that was us).
It wasn’t a perfect bike: apart from its lack of suspension (I! felt! every! thing!) and those derpy handles, it was unable to scale pebbles, much less onto sidewalks. My lovely mountain bike can hop curbs and cross very large potholes (in cities) and fallen logs and jutting boulders (on mountains) without incident. With this little red road bike I was desperately praying not to launch after every divot in the asphalt. Like, pedaling over a used lotto ticket felt dangerous. (Joke. Kind of.)
Even with those new challenges, it was a great ride and I had a great time exploring the city on that speedy little bike. The takeaway from all this, I’d argue, is that trying new things is awesome! Even if it’s terrifying in the moment a.k.a. for a few hours.
Point being: Bicycle monogamy is overrated!
Second point being we should all ride our bikes more and drive cars less because bikes are significantly cooler, and better for the environment, and make your calves look great.
ALSO!! DON’T FORGET TO WEAR A HELMET! CONCUSSIONS ARE NO FUN AND YOU LOOK MORE STUPID WITH A CONCUSSION THAN YOU DO WITH A HELMET.
SO THERE. WEAR ONE.