My friend bought a new bike this summer.
A nice bike. A really nice bike that he could barely afford. In fact, this bike has been on my own dream-bike list for at least four years. I can’t afford it, but I’m still pining for it or something like it.
This friend does not have much money. He’s rarely owned a vehicle and has never had a great job. He bought this bike to get around and the bike shop may have sold him too much bike. It’s a Cannondale CAADX Cyclocross bike.
He was trying out different road bikes and just saw this one hanging up in the store. It looked cool so he bought it. It’s kind of funny, I was talking to him at church a couple days after and trying to find out what bike he bought.
Friend: “I don’t know, it’s a road bike… Cannon-something”
Me: “What? A Cannondale? Whoa, that’s crazy! My favorite bike is a Cannondale cyclocross bike. It’s good for road and dirt and racing.”
Friend: “Oh no, I wouldn’t need that. I only ride on the roads. I’m not even sure what bike I have, just that it was nice at the store. It’s locked up outside, if you want to see it.”
*sound of me running up the back stairs out the back door*
It was so awesome, I snapped this photo right away:
Me (thinking to myself): It IS a Cannondale Cyclocross bike! I want it so bad!
Me: “Hey, that’s a really nice bike, you really should get a decent lock for it. Especially since you live in the West End of Winnipeg (the bike-stealing capital of our city).”
Friend: “I can’t afford a lock, I spent everything I have on this bike. I’m sure it’ll be OK.”
(I’m sure you understand I’m paraphrasing here, but you get the idea)
Two Weeks Later
Me: “Hey, how’s your new bike? We should go riding sometime!”
At this point my friend had on a seriously sad-looking face. With his eyes downcast, he told me that it had just been stolen. He had taken it to the gym and locked it up. I think it was out of his sight about an hour. When he came back, it was gone.
I was sad, frustrated, and angry about this whole situation. It really sucks! I hate bike theft! Especially this one. He might never afford a bike like this again and he’ll probably be so burned that he’ll end up with $100 Wal-Mart ones for life. I’m sure he literally spent the last of his money on that bike and had no room to buy a lock.
Look, folks. Even if you have a lock already, when you’re ready to drop a grand on a new bike, consider putting like 10% of that towards the security of that bike. Don’t just use your old cable lock that was good enough for your $100 bike.
I’m not endorsing any specific lock, but I know that when I do save up and get my dream-bike, I’ll also be saving for a heck-of-a-lock for it! Probably about a $200 lock. And this bike will not reside in my garage.
For the first week, it may reside next to me on my bed, but I’m sure my wife will understand.