I See Bicycles...

I spy them in garages as I glide past. The unridden. They lean against side walls, against drywall panels. They lean against racks full of other accumulated things. Sometimes they are hanging from above, from hooks or ropes. Sometimes there is stuff piled near by, against them, and I know without looking that their wheels are flat and lifeless; they have not been ridden in a long, long time. If they had feelings, were alive, the warmth of the sun, a cooling breeze would be tantalizingly close, yet beyond practical reach. They collect dust, and are expert at it, but that is not their intended purpose. So many bikes in so many garages.

What are their stories? Were they bought with the best of intentions? Or on a whim? I should see some of these bikes on the streets around town. Maybe I do see some, just don't recognize them in passing. Maybe some of them are those I see locked up to the newish racks around town. Maybe. Every so often I do recognize one and say, ah I know that bike; but the occasions are infrequent. It would be quite something If the number of bikes I see on the street approached the number of garages I see with bikes in them. But those street-savvy bikes are, by my informal means of comparison, a small minority compared to those shut-ins locked away in garages. Don't let them become stigmatized as one of the unridden. I see bikes alright, but not necessarily where I would like to see them. Instead of useless trophies to good intentions, put them to use, bring out your bikes. Dust them off, fill their tires, lube their chains, bring them into the light; it is good for them, it is good for you.