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Pedal Power

Dan and I are officially the dorkiest people on the planet as of 7:00pm this evening. Here’s a bit of the story:

One of my goals for the Bush Money (re: Stimulus Check) was to buy Dan a bike, so we could go on rides together. Now that I’ve been down to the Springwater Corridor Trail that runs a few blocks away from our house, I’ve been obsessively plotting Dan and I taking long and fun romantical bike rides together.

The unfortunate part of that equation, of course, being Dan lacking a bike.

Which is made even tougher by his height/weight ratio. In the biking world, folks in his class are known as Clydesdales which is a bizarre term, because it makes me think of giant horse feet and furry white manes, not beefy dudes.

But whatev. Basically I ended up doing a lot of frustrating and fruitless searching on bike forums.

Here comes rant numero uno. Bicyclists are insane. They will spend thousands of dollars on bikes, the way people will spend thousands on their cars, houses, etc.

I’ve spent maybe in the area of $200 on the free bike my dad found in an apartment – abandoned. And you know what, it does the same thing a $1000 bike does…but for less.

So – all of these sites were insisting that I needed to pay at least $700 for a “decent” bike that would support Dan’s weight and height class. What I absorbed mostly from all this insight (and fancy terms – bike forums are full of fancy bike language) – was that in order to be a reliable mode of exercise, Dan would need a 26″ inch frame, and a wheel that boasts at least 36 spokes. Also, the tire needed to be thicker and wider than the one on my old-70’s-ass-Schwinn.

After browsing Craigslist for the last couple of days, with bike prices falling around $300 for what I was looking for in town (or $100 for a trip out to Hillsboro or Camas), I quickly determined the best and most expedient route would be to get a low-end bike at Target.

We settled on a Men’s Schwinn Clear Creek Comfort Bike.

So now we both have Schwinn’s, which we are chaining up together underneath our condo steps. We rode over to my parent’s house this evening to test out the new wheels and show them off a little. And we were actually complimented by random strangers in our little suburb on the appeal of our beauties.

Dan’s bike is pretty attractive, I will admit. He has the kick-ass rack in the back, so he could attach saddle bags and haul groceries. The best I could accomplish for hauling on mine would be a basket in the front.

Sure, his bike is on the cheap side. It doesn’t have tricked out suspension and it can’t stop on a dime and it’s not equipped for commuting. We didn’t get expert service, a lifetime warranty, or any of that crap.

But again – I must state – it’s a fucking bike. And it can get him from point A to point B without breaking or snapping or badness ensuing due to his body size.

And to me – well, that’s the point. If this were a mode of transportation, or a commuter bike – I would invest around $500 or more in it. But it’s basically to give us an interesting activity on the weekends, for entertainment and to save a little gas money on the close trips (Blockbuster, My parents, The Library, The Quik-E Mart).

I will admit though – I had a couple nerd surges this evening looking at our Schwinn’s tucked up together.

Much Love, Mindy C

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About tinyheroes

Mindy Crouchley is a 33 year old woman with a degree in English and Technical Writing from Portland State University. She has accumulated three+ years experience in the Marketing and Communications field - with an emphasis on creating digital media content. She has been reading comic books since she was 10 years old. She currently lives in outer southeast Portland with her spouse Dan Robertson, her baby girl, and their dog - Jabba the pug. She spends her free time devouring books, crafting cosplay, video gaming, attending comic cons, writing stories/screenplays, attending book to film adaptation club meetings, volunteering, and watching copious amounts of TV and movies.

2 responses to “Pedal Power”

  1. Michael says :

    Super glad to hear of this! I love getting on the bike and running those small errands, because it makes me feel better (exercise) and makes me feel better (saving the planet a little bit at a time). Also, I figure that people notice others on their bikes, so it gives me hope that others will be encouraged. I hope you and Dan enjoy your biking together. 🙂

  2. Steve says :

    Glad you like the schwinn clear creek comfort bike.
    I just bought one and after adding a bit more air to the tyres and adjusting it to my own personal preferences, I intend to take it out for a spin in the morning.
    Im looking at it right now and its a great looking bike.
    The rack on the back will come in useful but I will have to get a couple bungee cords out of the car to use it.
    Also it has screws on the frame to attach a water bottle to it.
    The reviews said the seat isnt as comfortable as it could be so I might invest in a wider gel padded seat later on at some point if needed.
    But for $200 it is looking great.
    Cant wait to wake up tomorrow morning and finally enjoy getting some exercising with it.

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