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For him, or for her?

Old 05-31-19, 07:15 PM
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bargainguy
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For him, or for her?

Sold this 70's TdF today and had a head-scratcher to go along with it. Curious if anyone's had a similar experience. I've sold a lot of bikes, and I always pay attention to what's going on with my customers with their level of involvement or lack thereof. This one had me going.

Guy named Alex makes an appt to see the TdF today. He arrives with his girlfriend Kate in tow. They're younger, probably late 20's, and not the age where they would have grown up with these bikes like I did.

I show them into my sunroom where the TdF is waiting on a stand. Since I never assume the bike is for anyone currently there to look at it (it could be for anyone - family member, friend, kid, etc.), I ask, who's the bike for? Alex looks at Kate. OK, Kate wants it. No problem.

Since this is a classic French 531 frame with some interesting parts (a nice Avocet triple crank and matching pedals, Mafac Competition centerpulls, SunTour barcons and Cyclone RD, racks, 3T stem), I asked if they were bike aficionados or just looking for a nice bike. They said the latter. OK, we'll demo the bike in that mindset.

I show them the 3x5 setup and that it shifts well, show them how to avoid chain rub in a friction shifter, they were all fine with that. Went through all the other bike functions, everything cool. But Kate looks like she'd rather be in another universe. This doesn't escape my attention.

So after my spiel, just as I'm getting ready to take the bike off the stand and set seatpost height, I turn directly to Kate and asked, "Curious, what attracted you to this bike?" She looks sheepish for a second, doesn't say anything and looks straight at Alex. Then she says, "He did." I look at Alex, grinning ear to ear. Ah, the truth comes out, I say. I tell Alex, you be sure and take a test ride yourself if you want one.

Then I size the seatpost for her, and we get her all settled for a test ride. I go inside. They ring the bell a few minutes later, she wants it. Sold. I pack it in their vehicle and they drive away.

Now in the Great Material Continuum of bikes, it matters to me not a whit whether that bike was really meant for Alex or Kate, I was happy to help pass it along. But what I didn't get is that if the bike were truly for him, I'd rather make sure he was comfortable with fit & a test ride, not her, if he were the intended rider, or the mostly intended rider, anyway.

Has anyone ever heard of anything like this? Is this a one-off situation? Can't say I've ever heard of anyone buying a bike by direct proxy like this.


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Old 06-01-19, 02:55 AM
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Maybe he is trying to get her into riding, but she is a bit skeptical, so they buy the bike knowing he'll be happy with it if things don't work out.
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Old 06-01-19, 05:36 AM
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Now that is mega-range gearing!
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Old 06-01-19, 12:23 PM
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She wants a bike and couldn't give two hoots what it is. He is a bike nerd.

Happens all of the time.
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Old 06-01-19, 12:30 PM
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My Ex GF have nice bikes , at least.. ..
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Old 06-01-19, 01:04 PM
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I used to read Kents bike blog and as a seller of bikes he often encountered the situation of the guy wanting to buy a bike for his GF so they could ride together but getting zero input from her and or getting her a bike he would like. And then he takes her on a hammer fest right off the bat is and shocked she never wants to ride with him again. The idea that she might not want to ride the same bike in the same way he does never occurs to him. Then again I look back on my twenties and wonder how I survived to get to be a codger.

Nice TDF OP
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Old 06-01-19, 01:23 PM
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She wouldn't be the first woman to be pressured into buying something her partner likes.

I constantly have to tell my husband "no" when he finds something he thinks is cool, and it is, but it's not suitable for me or for my bikes.

Chances are, he'll end up with the bike.
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Old 06-01-19, 01:39 PM
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Thank you all! I didn't realize this was as common as it is.

Last time someone here really didn't want a bike was a married couple buying a mountain bike for their teenage daughter so they didn't have to shuttle her around anymore. Said daughter didn't want to be there, arms folded and head down, didn't want to straddle the bike for a fitting, didn't want to take a test ride, and faithfully resisted any effort to engage. I thought of that teenage girl when I saw Kate's reaction.
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Old 06-01-19, 05:07 PM
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Unless I'm reading this wrong ... They wanted a threesome, but you clearly weren't into it. She got very disgruntled. He saved face by buying a bike he didn't want. She'll slap him around a bit later today, and after a good cry, he will relist the bike on craigs with the headline, "french fun and maybe more," in the personals section.
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Old 06-01-19, 06:22 PM
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Originally Posted by SurferRosa View Post
Unless I'm reading this wrong ... They wanted a threesome, but you clearly weren't into it. She got very disgruntled. He saved face by buying a bike he didn't want. She'll slap him around a bit later today, and after a good cry, he will relist the bike on craigs with the headline, "french fun and maybe more," in the personals section.
Lol
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Old 06-01-19, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by bargainguy View Post
Has anyone ever heard of anything like this?
Yes. It's called "one month before they'll break up."
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Old 06-02-19, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Korina View Post
She wouldn't be the first woman to be pressured into buying something her partner likes.

I constantly have to tell my husband "no" when he finds something he thinks is cool, and it is, but it's not suitable for me or for my bikes.
My wife and I were on vacation- we found this cool little store- there was a men's side and a women's side. I'm in a ****ing wonderland of outrageously cool clothes, nice, nice stuff. My wife is walking around with me- and I tell her to go check out the other side with the women's clothes- surely she'd find something cool- with all this cool stuff on the men's side... She comes back 2 minutes later- she said "it's all old lady stuff." But this side is all cool, really nice...excellent... super... oh ****- this is all old man clothes and I think they're cool... damn.
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Old 06-02-19, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by The Golden Boy View Post
My wife and I were on vacation- we found this cool little store- there was a men's side and a women's side. I'm in a ****ing wonderland of outrageously cool clothes, nice, nice stuff. My wife is walking around with me- and I tell her to go check out the other side with the women's clothes- surely she'd find something cool- with all this cool stuff on the men's side... She comes back 2 minutes later- she said "it's all old lady stuff." But this side is all cool, really nice...excellent... super... oh ****- this is all old man clothes and I think they're cool... damn.
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