Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Slice-ycle, continued

Alternate Title: Flattery (Ahem) Will Get You Nowhere

I had rolled my bike with more difficulty than usual across the grassy field. "You're just tired," I told myself to dismiss the added effort. When I started to pedal homeward an hour later, I realized that the rear tire was -- and had been -- completely flat. Thankfully, a public bus provided adequate back-up transportation.

Having secured requisite repair items a few days later, I set about changing the flat. I located the culprit: a large screw buried up to its head, which I extricated from both tire and tube. I scrunched a new tube home, seated the tire, and pumped in air. I reveled in being back in pedaling business until the next morning when I tested the tire with a squeeze that revealed disappointing softness. I wallowed in a few moments of frustration, and then I repeated the changeover process with a fresh tube. This time, I tried to be more thorough by feeling around the inside of the tube for further vexations. I found one I had not detected previously, when the screw had seemed like the low-hanging (and only) fruit. My finger now felt something poking out, thorn-like, from the inside of the tire. With pliers, I tweezed out what appeared to be a tiny metal hair and finished the fix. The tire seemed reassuringly firm the next morning, so I rode. A quarter mile from my destination, however, the back-end of the bike clanked, followed by the uncomfortable grind of wheel rim on pavement. Another flat.

For the third and proverbially charmed time, I took the bike to a professional, explaining my saga so far. The mechanic set me up with a thicker thorn-proof tube and proclaimed both rim and tire free of any threats. So far, so good -- if only because I now carry a spare tube, pump, and tire irons with me on each commute.

Some morals of the story: Pay attention because the obvious problem may not be the only problem, and, should problems persist, consider inviting in outside eyes. Bringing in a professional, though, doesn't absolve us of responsibility to control what we can control.


8 comments:

  1. An entertaining post with a moral to the story! This was an enjoyable read. Thanks for sharing it!

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  2. You had me at ".. just tired."! High & low pressure biking! And that caps it off... pun intended. !no ediR

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  3. My dad would say "everything's busted". Just when you think you're on the mend something breaks again. I can feel your frustration! Thanks for sharing.

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  4. May the thorns and nails and sharp objects of the world move away when you rolls by.
    Kevin

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  5. Glad to see your thorny problem has been resolved. Let's hope the universe is daunted by your new thorn-proof tire.

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    1. I'd settle for a daunted roadway, let alone the universe ;)

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  6. Brian, as we tranverse the road of life, we need accoutrements and wisdom beyond ours at times. I would love for you to create a biking digital with wisdom for my Abundant Autumn Gallery. Travel on, Brian!

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