May 23, 2004

curly's big adventure

I sit here this morning writing to you with a screamingly sore bum. No, not for THAT reason, dirty-minded ones. I bought a bike yesterday and promptly went for a 14-mile ride in Prospect Park.

My Good Neighbor was kind enough to accompany me on a bike-shopping expedition yesterday. We started out at a shop for serious riders in the East Village. I had intended on buying a used bike so that I could get a quality frame at a decent price. But when we arrived at Bikes By George, the pickings were rather slim... and they weren't pretty.

I didn't necessarily want one with a basket on the front or rainbow-colored tassels hanging from the grips but the hot pink and mustard-colored offerings were less than stellar. Good Neighbor realized what he was dealing with and promptly got on the phone and found a few more stores. As we walked westward, many bikes were chained up along the way which we naturally critiqued:
Good Neighbor: That's a nice one.

Yours Truly: Nope, too "Mrs. Gulch."

Good Neighbor:
We had big plans to hit the shops for serious cyclists but we took a quick detour into the Astor Place K-mart "just to look." Less than 30 minutes later, I was swiping my debit card at the register with a kick-ass Huffy (going back to my roots) in tow. It's a sweet ride. The last time I bought a bike, I was about 13. I had saved up money from my paper route (I kid you not) and bought a powder pink and gray Huffy 10-speed. The handlebars had pink grips and there were lovely splashes of pastel colors on the frame. I bought it on a Saturday but couldn't pick it up until Monday because it had to be assembled. That schoolday was quite possibly the longest, most excruciating day ever.

This time around, the seat had a bar code sticker on it so we wheeled it to the register, the cashier scanned it and off we went. I also got a helmet but I made Good Neighbor carry the K-mart bag because I still have embarrassment issues stemming from childhood about that. I think I was ridiculed in school because of K-mart brand crayons one year and I've been scarred ever since. Besides, I looked kick-ass on the 6 train standing next to a metallic blue bike with a shock-absorbing frame. I couldn't ruin the illusion with a plastic bag draped from my wrist. Ew.