I bought a sweet beach cruiser a decade(ish) ago. I paid about $300 for it — super-ghetto standards by ye Boulder bike-isseurs, but I just needed something to get to work and home.
Vintage tidbit for your pleasure: The last Boulder bus to Denver used to be 12:04 a.m., so if I missed that bad boy while working the late shift for the paper, I'd have to sleep in a bed of Colorado Daily T-shirts in the newsroom until the next bus came at 5:30 a.m.
Cry for me, Argentina. Woe is me.
I had the bike four days when I secured it outside of the Whiskey Bar in Denver with a lock that could have been gnawed in half by a toddler. I shouldn't be surprised it went missing.
I cried for days thinking about my shiny black-and-red beast.
Might as well drink about it. A couple days after my loss, I'm at the Whiskey Bar, crying into my Beam, blathering to anybody within earshot about how my bike got stolen. (I felt like Pee-wee Herman. I would have searched the Alamo's basement if a psychic told me the bike was there.)
"What does your bike look like and when did you lose it?" asked a familiar face.
Sidebar A: I had boyshorts-style skivvies under my skirt because I was single, I had no plans to get laid and who the fuck cares. But more on that later.
Sidebar B: Dude lived in the skate warehouse on Lawrence Street downtown — which is probably now a boutique for high-end starfish bleaching or botox enemas — who I knew from warehouse DIY skate parties. Five bucks at the door got you unlimited beer, seedy punk band screams, 30-foot halfpipes and a front-row seat to people nailing in the portable potties and snorting lines off cement floors.
"It's black and red," I blurted, among tears. "It was stolen out front about a week ago."
Dude ditched me. Well screw you, bozo, you asked. I thought maybe he was sick of my shitshow, but instead he returned 10 minutes later with my bike.
Glimmering sparkles bounced off it. I hugged it, then I hugged him.
"Some homeless man sold it to us at the warehouse," he said. "I figured it was stolen because he only wanted $20, but I didn't ask any questions."
I got $20 out of the ATM, gave it to dude, brought him some drinks and also home.
The next morning, I was getting ready to ride my shiny bike to Denver's Union Station so I could tell everybody at the Colorado Daily, "I FOUND MY BIKE!" But my ecstasy was short-lived.
"Why the fuck are you wearing those things (the aforementioned comfy underpants) instead of a thong?" asked dude as I got dressed. "You look stupid. Do you think guys like that? You have a lot to learn, woman."
A tinge of my faith in humanity shit the bed that day, my friends. But I gathered it back quickly when I realized his junk was deformed and I can change my underwear.
In your face, dude. And thanks for the bike.