Mountain Bikes

I was all excited to write a post about mountain bikes this morning, but I don’t really feel up to it right now. Nonetheless, I think I’ll press ahead.

I had a nice Mongoose I bought in Pasadena years ago for a lot of money. My ex gave it away when we split up. Meanwhile, my girlfriend found a steal on a decent used mountain bike a week or so ago, and is eager to get riding. Well, I want to join her. I’ve been combing Craigslist and other boards for used bikes, as well as looking at places like Dick’s and Academy Sports, etc. I even ran into — and out of — a Trek store. I can’t go for a 10K bicycle. Wow.

Well, it came down to two or three possibilities. One was a new Mongoose at one of the sporting stores. Bare bones, but good enough and what I was looking for. Also, very reasonably priced. However, on Craigslist, I found another bike for sale that looked like a pretty good deal. It was a no name bike in pretty good condition listed at $65, but the owner agreed to come down to $50. We went to see it last night, noted the seat needed adjusting and the brakes needed tightening, but otherwise it seemed fairly decent, so I bought it.

I’m having some misgivings now, however. Sadly. First of all, we adjusted the seat with no problem. Good. Then, early this morning, I tightened the front brakes perfectly. The back ones, however, looked tricky. The cable was broken off and if I didn’t get a hold of it just right, it could slip out of what was holding it and I’d be damned if I could get it back in. Which is exactly what happened. I’ve spent an hour and a half on my knees trying to crimp wires and cables, trying to extend the cable where there was no extension possible, trying to reconnect — all to no avail. I’m going to have to take this no name bike into a good bike store for a new brake cable and repair, surrounded by nice, new, expensive bikes. A lesson in humility.

To make matters worse, I got in a two bike bike rack today. I had ordered it Monday so my girlfriend and I could drive our bikes down to the river to go riding on the path there, among other places. Well, I set it up on my car this afternoon. Had one hiccup, which I fixed. Then I lifted the surprisingly heavy aluminum bike up onto the bike rack, and it wouldn’t fit — at all. The frame is a touch too big and it’s shaped oddly, so it just won’t fit. So I won’t even be able to get this damn bike to a bike store for repair. Now I’m thinking it was a lesson learned and I blew $50. I’m thinking I’m probably just going to go ahead and get that Mongoose I should have bought in the first place come payday. Live and learn, right?

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