Friday, February 10, 2012

And then this happened...

The other day I stayed home from work in order to attend a work event on the Mall. When it came time to leave, I hopped on the bike, delighted at the chance to pedal to this event and—hey!—cross off Item #7 on the Utilitaire challenge.

Except that the pedals barely moved when I pushed on them and I nearly crashed into a street sign. I jumped off the bike to find that the rear wheel was completely flat. I’d biked home the day before just fine… and these tires are reinforced with Kevlar to prevent punctures. I went over the tire inch by inch and sure enough, there it was:

Short, deep, and sharp. No glass or anything embedded in the cut. It sure looks like someone took a knife to one of my brand-new Schwalbes overnight.

I don’t have the right size wrench to get the bolts off to change the tire, and my attempt with an adjustable wrench just shaved a bunch of metal off the outer edges of the bolt. I'm going to drive or walk the bike into the shop in the next day or two; they already have a new tire on order. I guess they can just do the one-month tuneup while they're waiting for the tire to ship.

We were already starting the Utilitaire a week behind, so I guess this means we won’t get our two rides a week in before the deadline. C’est la vie, as the randonneurs might say. When I get the bike back, I’ll continue ticking items off of our control card as a way of pushing myself to bike to new places.

What are you gonna do? I don’t want to trot out the standard “This is why we can’t have nice things, DC!”, but this is why it’s hard to have nice things. Especially in DC.

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