Okay, I will admit it, I stopped riding my bike because of “cold weather asthma” that kicked in when the temperature got to like ten or fifteen degrees. It’s something that I had experienced before, but after biking home one night in late December I was out of breath for like four hours, and that was plenty of excuse for me to call off the biking for the winter. However, the weather is taking a turn for the warmer, and everywhere I go on campus I see the cool bikes of the hardcore winter riders taunting me, so I figured that it was time to get my bike ready for riding again.
When I bought my bike at Freewheel, Jim was kind of my salesman — even though the first time I went in he didn’t even recommend the Surly, and he might not have actually rang us up when my *cough* mom paid for me to get some exercise and save $3.25 in parking costs per day plus a small amount of gas expenses. I’ve been putting off buying chain oil and degreaser all winter, even though my bike is about four or five months past due. Today was the day that I finally got off of my ass and drove to the bike store to pick up lube. Did I mention that my car is out of commission for the moment? Yes, there is a transmission problem akin to a leak that seems to be preventing the car from fully engaging gears, so for the last week I have been bumming rides from Lisa or borrowing the sex station wagon to get to school or Anoka. Yes, I’m still driving to Anoka, which is located in a timezone where the internet has not yet been invented, so when I’m there (visiting Cake Woman, duh), I’m offline. Where was I?
Oh yeah, so Jim left Freewheel and opened his own bike shop. I drove across the entirety of Minneapolis to get there and buy a 4 ounce bottle of chain lube. The shop is tiny and I had to leave before I bought myself panniers that tranform into a backpack (the other options were panniers that transformed into Autobots) and a multi-thousand dollar commuter bike with a built in espresso machine. Hiawatha Cyclery specializes in commuter machines, so I was sporting wood under my khakis, which made me glad that I have never bought into the whole spandex bike clothes thing. I didn’t touch any of the bikes for fear of ruining my pants by having an instant orgasm. The shop didn’t have any degreaser in stock, so on the way home I stopped at Home Depot for some orange based spray stuff.
Once I had my bike up on the laundry sink and an unbent coat hanger linking it to the ceiling, the whole cleaning process went quickly. I removed the peanut butter colored dirt, salt, and rust from the chain and all the gears. Everything got hosed off and wiped down, then sprayed and scrubbed and hosed and sprayed and — you get the idea. Cleaning. I intend to ride again on Monday, and then for the rest of the week to tone up for SPRING BREAK WOOOOOOO!