a quality of life issue

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bike share bike mechanic bike

October 27, 2017

 

That’s not my bike

 

Much of bike mechanics’ work goes unnoticed unappreciated under the radar behind the scenes back of the house. But the work of bike share bike mechanics in under under under appreciated.

 

Did you finish that bike yet?

 

Yes

 

No, not that bike, that one, the orange one to the left of those 750 other orange ones here in the warehouse

 

  • check the stem bolt on the 1 ⅛” quill stem and bar with basket one piece combo
  • Check frame alignment
  • repair bent and broken fender struts
  • replace damaged chain guard
  • true wheels replace broken spokes
  • replace brake pads
  • replace rear brake cable
  • adjust brake calipers
  • realign brake levers
  • replace torn grips
  • trouble-shoot lock mechanism
  • replace broken tail light
  • replace stolen saddle
  • lube chain
  • replace rear tire

 

When that bike is finished repeat the procedure 751 times 

As soon as those bikes are finished unpack and assemble the 500 bikes in boxes that just arrived from China in those shipping containers outside the warehouse

They're not just the same color they’re all the same fucking size too

I’m not providing commentary on the benefits of bike share in a crowded city I’m commenting on the mountain of work the mechanics have to maintain these bikes.

Sisyphean ground hog dayish repetitious loop de loop fuckin A ad nauseum

 

I thought you said your bike doesn’t suck

That’s not my bike




I want my oompa loompa NOW

In today’s disposable insatiable on demand tap the app instant gratification Seattle people want it now and they want it for $1.00 and they want it to function and be readily available within 50 feet of their present location at any given moment.

 

Other cultures other languages have the complicated sentiments boiled down to a single word or two. Powerful words that sum up the behind the scenes hard work the pride and internal motivation that keeps people showing up for work day in and day out. I can imagine it’s hard to keep that internal motivation cranking as a mechanic when people are tossing those bikes around the streets $1.00 ride at a time.

There are words to succinctly describe the spirit in the bike, its soul, its energy, its sum total greater than a bunch of parts strung together. The soul of a bike share bike is somewhere between a Walmart sale item and a Venice Beach cruiser rental and even at that it’s hard to identify. But it’s worth more than one dollar.

C. Forest Hoag used to speak of mechanical husbandry which brings to mind the idea of working on a customer’s bike for 4 hours then taking it out for a little test ride to see how it rolls and then asking a coworker to go out and ride it too and I was constantly reminded to ditch normal riding and ride like an idiot shifting too much cross chain under load uphill skidding stupid shit that you think no person would ever do on a bike.  but people who consider themselves cyclists do stupid shit on their very own bikes all day long.  

 

bike share bikes are in a whole new stupid shit category

 

If you know a mechanic that works on bike share bikes, buy them a beer.




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. said...

Bike Share and officer Mulculky(?). In my mind he's standing on the corner losing his mind in attempt to gain control of 750 helmetless tourist riding around in chaotic arching lines. Frenetically writing tickets.

Posted October 29, 2017 01:52 PM | Reply to this comment

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