Hello from Los Angeles.
Six months ago, I graduated from college. Luckily, my parents let me spend a few months figuring out the next step at home. I've stumbled into a few jobs blind and hoping they'd stick. Worked as a resume writer, an expert in collation, filing and print station jam-location, and--somewhat, but not really glamorously--as a freelance reporter for local radio. But for the last two months, I haven't been doing much. I'm not sure how it works for most recent grads with a liberal arts degree, but isn't it a little early for a ____-life crisis?
I figured it was time to get outside. So after a month on craigslist, I picked this up:
According to the seller, who raced a few crits himself, it belonged to his dad. He says it's a Criterium from the eighties, either an '86 or an '87, making it almost as old as I am. Biopace rings, and Shimano 105 brakes, derailleurs, and shifters. It probably goes without saying that it's an all-aluminum frame. There were a few dings in the finish, and one indentation on the top tube when I bought it. I'm afraid to say it's a bit more worse for wear since I've taken it around the block.
I probably shouldn't tell you guys how old I was when the training wheels came off, so believe me when I say I knew nothing about bicycles when I brought the bike home. It was two weeks later when I finally figured out it had a broken rear axle.
Other than getting that replaced, I've only had to get the bearings in the headtube re-packed to make the bike road-worthy. At least I hope so. Here's fingers crossed for me being lucky.
How lucky? No accidents. Haven't pissed anyone off in traffic, as far as I can tell. Only got yelled at once by a cop. I like battling the local hills. If there's a fork with a way up and a way down, I'll go the way up.
And it's been a great learning experience... struggling for an hour trying to pry that second bead off the rim when all the online tutorials say the whole thing shouldn't take more than 15 minutes. Imagine that, a liberal arts major who's also ********. But the best part of that whole experience? Waking up the next day, itching to try it all again on the front wheel, just for practice. It wasn't a 15 minute job, but I'll settle with my 20.
So wouldn't you know it, here's something I stumbled into--completely blind--and it turns out I kind of like it.
Was that too long? Anyway, thanks for the forums. Glad to be here.