Monday, March 1, 2010

Roadside attraction

I admit it. . . if you want to feel hardcore (okay, maybe if you just want to feel like a really-and-for-true urban cyclist) you can't do much better than to stop at a bike shop in the Market between work and dance class (or wherever you're going in the evening), buy a tire for your bike, then head out of the shop, wheel around to the abandoned pub patio on the alley next to the shop, flip the bike over, and replace the tire.

Luckily, it was about 3 degrees out - so, plenty warm enough to be kneeling on brick, futzing around with cold grimy metal without gloves on - and there was a convenient little brick patio outside the Black Thorn, next to Pecco's Bike Shop, where I could work without getting in anyone's way. Popped off the wheel (I love those quick release wheels), peeled off the tire, replaced it, and dropped the old one next to a city garbage bin on my way to the noodle shop for dinner. Hells yeah, I felt like a denizen of the urban landscape.

It's the little things. I'm still going to have to take him in to the Bike Dump for a look at the wobbly crank shaft, very soon. But roadside repairs? Tick that off on my Cyclist Purity Test. (Not that there is one. But maybe there should be.)


  1. peeled off the tire, replaced it, and dropped the old one next to a city garbage bin on my way to the noodle shop for dinner

    fyi: MEC takes in old bike tires to recycle them. They ask for a dollar to cover the cost, but considering the environmental impact of those troublesome pieces of junk, it's well worth it.

  2. I asked at Pecco's if they took the old tires in, and they said no: and MEC is several miles away from downtown, otherwise I would have definitely gone there to drop it off: but there was no way I could get out there, with the old tire slung around my shoulders, and back in the hour I had to get to my class. Believe me, I did think about it but not knowing of anywhere else in the Market that would take it off my hands, I did the bad and easy thing this time.

    Your point is well taken though.

  3. yeah, it's really a shame that acting environmentally responsibly goes so much against the grain of our culture.

    It's probably old news for most who read this site, but just in case, and until bike shops evolve a little: Re-cycles on Bronson is a neat place where you can discard anything bike-related. If it's any good, it will find its way onto a new bike and if not, get recycled.

  4. I'm actually, since you mentioned it, going to call all the bike shops and find out how many of them will take old tires for recycling. I'll post my findings! Somehow I figure if I ask about it, maybe it'll pop up on their radar as something they oughta do: and at the very least I might be able to get a list together of shops thst do and post it, say on Spacing as well as here.

    And thanks for the reminder about Re-Cycles. I hadn't thought of it at the time but should've. Maybe I'll swing through the Market tomorrow and see if the tire's still there and rescue it ;-)

  5. Nevermind the re-cycle bit, Well done for changing the tyre in the cold weather. I would have been very much tempted to either ask the shop to do it or change it at home in the lounge. Full marks to you girl :)

  6. Thanks! Although to be honest it wasn't that chilly out, relatively speaking (but then, we just got off a couple of months of -10 to -25 temperatures, so anything above zero feels practically tropical...)