Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A Bike Day

 I just had a great day. I kind of went out the door with some fun ideas and a good attitude too. I was pretty sure I was going to get a bike. A couple of the guys at Old Town School said they were going to track down a second hand bike for me if they could...so I was ready. I went to work at pet store and popped into Trader Joe's first for some bottled water and breakfast. At the cash-out a fellow in line behind me said "I like your pink hair" And I said, "Thanks, it was a mess making it, with pink all over the house....and then I realized I had a wedding coming up and it might not go over well." He said "Your hair would be a thing at a wedding?" And I said ..."Maybe a conservative setting and family etc" He said,"Well, me too. My partner and I are going to a conservative wedding in two weeks, we're gay and with our adopted baby". We both raised our hands and high fived. And I ran to work. I got to work and dropped off my breakfast and ran back to Trader Joe's where he was cashing out...and said "We should be friends, come next door and get my phone number!"

Well, he did and when he came in I said, "Oh my god, I'm so aggressively looking for a friend its like i'm hitting on you. Here's my number" And he said "When you left I asked the cashier,"I told her I'm gay and she said she's married...what was that?" And we were laughing. We exchanged numbers and he gives me a business card with his cell and it's from a hair salon. I say, "Oh you work there? My husband got his hair cut there for years" And he said "I work there if by work there  you mean own and run". "No way!" says I....and then we told each other how we're gonna stalk each other. This could be the start of a beautiful friendship.
Later that day, way after breakfast and two liters of water, and potasium vitamins (for leg cramps since I've been working out) I get a text from Cribbage buddy at Old Town School...he found a bike on Craigslist for me. Yahoo! So I take off from the pet store...and I am scared. My Cribbage pal has texted me to see if I can haggle down the price. Can I haggle? I'm a monster at haggling. He texts his doubts since I'm from Canada he wonders if we're too nice for that sort of thing.

My issue is that I'm getting afraid of going to a strangers house with my poor lack of direction and a wallet of cash. I'm mildly panicky. I make a pledge to myself. I've seen self-defense programs. I will not go to a second location. The guy says he has to sell the bike today and this has me on edge. Surely only a crackhead needs to sell a bike so quickly. This could bode well for haggling down the price though. A desperate character needing his fix. Perhaps I am a heartless capitalist after all. I shall insist he brings the bike out to the front street. I will not go to a second location.

I don't like the look of the houses. They seem run down, it's sketchy. Okay, it's Wrigleyville, they're mansions. Some of them dirty old, run down mansions, okay? But I get to his address and it's shabby looking. Old filthy curtains. Okay they're vintage. When I phone from across the street at a safe distance I see his scrawny arm open the curtains to suss me out. His room is dark and iIassume the bright sunlight is too harsh for his red-eyed cold-turkey cravings. He meets me outside and he is totally preppy and about as fresh faced as a college grad could be. He just finished school he has to sell his bike because he leaves for home in Boston tomorrow. I follow him into the back yard. He has a trailer hitched to his bike from when he would sell cold bottled water in a cooler to Cubs fans to make ends meet while he was getting his degree. Yeah right. The bike trailer looks about the right size to hold kidnapped toddlers held for ransom to support his drug habit I think as I realize I've gone to a second location. Doh!

Jeez, I had to get out of there quick. How much is the bike? Okay I'll buy the lock too.Thanks. I'm so relieved this guy is not a poxy-faced bath-salts-huffing bike thief I had to get away quick before I paid off his student loans.

I ride back to the pet store, get my groceries, stop for a pedicure and then ride to lawrence bus. it feels great. I even managed to get my bike onto the bus rack towards the burbs ride home. On the bus I text my personal shopper personal bicycle stragegist  from Cribbage games...and confess I barely haggled at all. He texts me back "I think that's the Canada coming through. College kids should be easier to swinde."


Furtheron said...

At first sight of the picture at the top I thought the bus was mowing down the bike! DOH!

I'm like you - "I'm going to really haggle them down" then when I get there it's "I'm only selling this as I need to pay for my Aunts funeral" or something I stump up the asking price! FOOL! :-)

mister anchovy said...

Sounds like a great day. Enjoy your bike!

I know someone who used to have the perfect city bike. It looked like it was in terrible shape, rusty, ugly, beat up - the kind of bike no self-respecting bike thief would bother to steal....but actually it was a perfectly tuned-up bike for the city.

Candy Minx said...

Furtheron I thought same thing when I saw pic. I am usually good at negotiating and haggling. I even haggle at department stores!

Mister Anchovy, was that me who had the rusty bike? I've had some doozies over the years. this one is a little difficult but will work...need some saddle bags to pack picnic for the beach now...

Greg S. said...

Careful, bikes are addictive! Congrats. That was a well-written story, btw.

Janet said...

beautiful story :-) It's always nice to make a new friend!