5 Years of Using a Bike as Transport

I realized tonight that my 5 year anniversary is coming up fairly soon. The anniversary of my starting to ride a bike again after abandoning it once I got a drivers license… and also had that regrettable infatuation with rollerblades, but let’s not talk about that :0)

However, being the geek that I am, I wanted to figure out *exactly* when I bought the bike, so that I could plan a celebration.  I though I’d look back through old emails and track down when I first started writing to everyone about bike fun… and it worked!  I found the exact email I wrote to a friend, saying “I bought a bike today!  This town is so small and everything here (was living in Taos, New Mexico at the time) is so close together, I think I could ride my bike to rent movies and get groceries and commute to work.  And gas is 2.40 a gallon, holy crap!”.  Hard to believe that was once a revolutionary  thought in my world.  I suppose it didn’t hurt that I had co-workers who commuted by bike and even went so far as to encourage me to ride by giving me an old headlight and a used pair of gloves for that new bike.  (Thanks Dave Maciolek!)

However, in that same email I also said “I looked on craigslist, but all of those used bike are so expensive.  I could buy a new one at  Wal-Mart for less money… it seems like a better deal to get a new bike for less than a used one!”  Haha, oh my, I have learned so much since then… I was so wrapped up in car culture back then, not through any great attachment to it, but simply through force of  habit.  I’m happy to say that I’m now car free.  And in the last few months I’ve spent $1,000 on parts for my Big Dummy, and the end is not yet in sight before I can actually start building it up.  I’m glad I finally came around to the benefits of a quality, useful bike.  Especially in relation to the cost of owning a car :0)  I guess there’s hope for everyone.

– Joel Stitzlein

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