Thursday, March 17, 2011

Introducing Scarlett

For some time now I have been scheming to lose weight, and to that end, boring regular readers of this blog with an ongoing quest to obtain a nifty Cannondale bike. But to be frank, some expenses incurred this year and in 2010, plus an overall sluggish U.S. economy, means a Cannondale (which can be pricey) is not in the household budget for the time being.

You think no-budget living is really gonna stop me? Heck no!

Yes, my computer desk is really this untidy. Eh well.

One semi-resourceful brain and ten flying fingers later, I was browsing my local Freecycle group in search of a women's bike in good, rideable condition. Since I'd donated items to Freecycle before, I was in good stead to post a request for a bike.

Here's what turned up:

A beauteous red Schwinn ten-speed. (Alert readers might have noticed this item showing up as a particular detail in an ongoing writing project.) She needs a touch of love here and there, but at the bargain price of FREE I can definitely afford to get her cleaned up.

Gretel has a wonderful habit of naming her bicycles, which seemed a good idea to adopt... so this one has been dubbed Scarlett, for two reasons: 1) the obvious color connection and 2) her name pretty much has to be Scarlett if I'm going to be Gone with the Schwinn.

Hey, don't judge me. I've had to become a pun-fu master in self-defense after many years of hanging around Captain Midnight, Pun King.

Anyway, I still need to pick up some gear, since the county in which we reside has made it illegal for riders even to go for a spin around the neighborhood without wearing dorky bike helmets. Yes, I do realize helmet use is a good idea and contributes to public safety, but just because it's common sense doesn't mean it should automatically be mandatory. Let me be an idiot and run the risk of spilling my own brains on the pavement; I AM AN ADULT AND AS SUCH AM CAPABLE OF MAKING AND LIVING WITH THE CONSEQUENCES OF MY OWN CHOICES.

Don't worry, that's all the ranting I'm gonna do for today. (Mutta mutta bureaucrats mutta nanny state mutta mutta.)

ETA: Scarlett needs some love. Her chain slips. Looks like I might need to get it tightened or replaced, possibly along with the sprocket. We shall see.


Gretel said...

OOHHH!! I was so excited when I saw this, I squealed out loud - she is utterly gorgeous! And you have ten speeds too! Marjorie will be jealous, she only has three. I read somewhere this week that cycling a few miles four times a week can lose about 11 pounds in a year - I have been out 3 times this week and managed (albeit at a gentle pace) eleven miles average, and I can actually feel the difference already. I'm glad we don't have compulsory helmet wearing here, not that they could really enforce it in the countryside. Have fun, it really is the best way to get fitter and loose a bit of excess, in my opinion.

Soozcat said...

Gotta admit, I did a little jig when I got her. It was a very fortunate find.

I've really missed having a bike. Years ago I went just about everywhere on my bike... then I lost it in one of our moves, and didn't bother to replace it.

Marjorie shouldn't be too jealous. Ten speeds aren't necessary when three will do. (But I'm sure not going to complain!)

Wendy Jean said...

I don't have a helmet either, but brought a couple schwinn's home from my Dad's house after Awsumb finally learned how to ride a 2wheel bike. I realize he doesn't really have anyone to ride with... And because we live at the bottom of a steep hill we don't end up doing on leisurely bike rides often. Around here it's like you have to be serious and have all the gear? Too many people with to much excess if I say so myself.. I don't wanna be a biker, just take alittle ride every so often.. If you ever want someone to go on an illegal ride with let me know!

Soozcat said...

Steep hills can make casual riding a daunting thing. He might need to push the bike up to the flat and ride from there.

I love the idea of an "illegal ride." Makes me think of Marlon Brando on a bicycle.

LDahl said...

Wow, That's awesome! Free? What a deal!!

Soozcat said...

Freecycle is awesome -- both for finding great stuff, and for passing on stuff that could still be useful to someone else. I highly recommend it.