"Beauty confronts us with the requirement that we place ourselves among...the redeemers, the leaders in the protection of life. Once you have seen the bush on fire, you are not going to get out of the assignment unless you close your eyes to the beauty.... [You] either have to close your eyes or go back to Egypt and set the people free." - Rev. Dr. Rebecca Parker, "Rising to the Challenge of Our Times"

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


I rode my road bike to the bike shop yesterday to have the wheels swapped out, and then realized I would have to walk home. I realized this out loud and the owner asked me if I wanted to borrow a bike. Sure, I thought. He went to the back and then reemerged with this 3-speed cruiser with coaster brakes. I tried to conceal my ambivalence as best I could, he was loaning me a bike, after all. I said, "This will be my first cruiser experience." The owner said "Watch out, you might get hooked."

I pushed it down to the corner so that nobody in the bike shop would be able to see my first attempt to ride it. Right away I noticed that the pedals don't go backwards. The bike seemed very high, and much heavier than I was used to, though the seat was about the right height for pedaling. I managed to jump on and start pedaling and didn't fall down. The shifting is some kind of internal hub system controlled with a grip shifter. It even tells you where to 'start.'

I can't deny that the seat was mighty comfortable. But I had to talk myself out of being embarrassed all the way home. I have nothing against other people riding cruisers...I'm all for it. Just not quite right for my idiom. Maybe this is how some dogs and cats feel when somebody dresses them up in a Halloween costume.


hmr said...

I miss my old cruiser something awful. Though I didn't have any fancy shifters or anything like that.

I think you're mighty lucky that you've had this opportunity and also lucky he didn't loan you a unicycle.

adam said...

Reminds me of Japanese bikes, minus the coaster breaks, and the GIANT kick stand in the back.