when you have a bunch of bikes on hand, something starts to happen: even when you know how to fix the ones that break down, you just don’t bother, because you can so easily grab another bike and keep riding. in fact, it’s a nice little system, because that way you end up riding all the bikes at one point or another, instead of letting them languish unridden.
but then eventually a point is reached, when there are not enough functioning bicycles remaining, and something has got to give.
at my house, it finally happened this weekend. we’ve only got four bicycles between two people (which is a fairly sane ratio compared to my former life in which i had six bikes all on my own) but only one of them was working. of the others, one has an undiagnosed puncture, the other has a ruptured rear tire sidewall (again), and the third has a pedal with seized inner bearings that i can’t access. of course it would be easiest to deal with the puncture, but that’s the bike i’ve been riding most recently, and as much as i love it, i’m wanting a little change. plus, i miss carrying things, and the bike with the fucked-up pedal is a sweet old italian cruiser with a solid rack that can take my pannier buckets.
that’s when i dug out my collection of cherry parts, and discovered that bike pedals come with two different sizes of pedal axles… who knew? well, not this bike geek.
that sweet old italian cruiser? yeah, it takes a size smaller axle than any of the nice pedals in my collection. fucking hell.
i forgot to tell you: while i was still in australia, i blogged about how upon my return to canada, my former volunteer mechanic gig at the local community bike shop was going to turn into a paid position, but this didn’t happen. in fact, not long after i got back, a bunch of changes resulted in the shop no longer even being open for the women-and-trans-only shifts that i used to cover. i’m not upset about this, because it really does make sense given the situation, but it has meant that i don’t have regular schedules access to tools or parts or impromptu mid-wrenching dance parties.
however! i still have friends, which is what really matters. one quick phone call, and i’ve made my plan: after school tomorrow, me and mo are walking over to a friend’s house to exchange some of my pickles for a chance dig through his pedal collection, which is much larger than mine. it won’t cost either of us a cent, and his dog may even teach mine a thing or two while i’m there.
this is why, even though i’ve left this city many times, i always come back.