The Story of an Almost Stolen Bike

Having completed the build of my new cyclocross bike half an hour before, I stop into MASH TRANSIT to eat a sandwich with my friends and teammates. I lean my bike against the bike rack outside and enter the shop. Anyone who knows me knows that it is highly unusual for me to leave a bike outside; I am paranoid of theft and therefore usually lock my bike with two u-locks. Not this time.

As I am chilling with Dylan, Walton, and Mike, a thief snatches my bike and rides away. Mike sees him and is halfway to the door before I realize what is happening. For a moment I see him before he is out of sight, a dirty junkie with torn up clothing riding my brand new bike! Thief/junkie rides down 14th Street toward Church Street, and I run after him. As I am out the door, Mike says that someone should get on a bike, but I am completely beside myself and don’t listen. Thief/junkie is so close, I think I can catch him. I run down the middle of the street, twenty feet behind him.

I can tell thief/junkie does not know (A) how to ride tennis shoes on top of Time Atacs or (B) how to shift Sram levers or (C) where he is going. I was in the smallest gear possible when I parked the bike, 36/28, and now he is spinning that like a fool. This was without a doubt the fastest I have ever ran in my life. Writing this blog a day later my calves are still burning and on the verge of cramping from the effort (pathetic, I know).

Thief/junkie approaches the intersection of Market and Church Streets and rides up on the sidewalk. Why he chooses to escape uphill rather than continue toward the steep downhill on 14th street I do not know. Regardless, Dylan comes out of left field on his MASH/Cinelli single-speed like he was sprinting for a finish line. He comes from behind thief/junkie and gives him an elbow/shoulder/body check that Mike Lupati of the 49ers would be proud of. Thief/junkie goes airborne off my bike and into a wall before landing on the ground. I am stunned of the power Dylan was able to direct perpendicularly from a moving bicycle. Perhaps channeling an inner hatred of bike thieves after the recent theft of his own bike?

By the time I get to Dylan, thief/junkie has remounted my bike and is making another break for it. This dude is really brave, really stupid, and/or really desperate. Coming at him with my 300 meter dash momentum I slam into him as hard as I can. He flies off my bike and has another airborne collision with a different wall.

I retrieve my bike.
Bike Gods smiling down on me.

Lessons learned:
1) Do not fuck with this man:

2) Do not leave a bike unattended and unlocked. Even if in front of a bike shop with a glass facade. Even if that bike shop has a half-opened front door. Even if you are ten feet from that open door.

_Rainier Schaefer