[This is an old post that never made it out of draft status.]
When I was 21, my life pretty much revolved around politics. I was seriously dating a girl at the time and we connected heavily through politics. I was of the anarcho-punk ilk and she was of the 'graduated at 20 with a double major and speak 3 languages' ilk. We actually discussed at one point the feasibility of going to Chiapas to fight with the Zapatistas (yeah, yeah, I know how ridiculous that is).
I have this vivid memory of being on the train in NYC with her, coming back from visiting my father in Brooklyn, and I said something about having five bikes. Not that I had them at the time, but that at some point in the future there were five different types of bikes I would like to own. She laid into me about how hypocritical and consumerist that would be of me. And how it went against so much of what I was about. What the hell does anyone need five bikes for?
Her and I did actually go to Chiapas, but we remained unarmed (mostly went to bakeries and bought Marcos dolls). Eventually a bike would come between us; when I rode cross country she broke up with me. What does this have to do with a bike check? Well, even in my over-zealous idealist youth, I was willing to make exceptions for bikes. I really had no idea at the time how much of a medium they would be in exploring and experiencing the world. But here we are.
A one-off custom frame from Trystan Cobbett and Bernard from Seven. It has the Ritchey break-away system. Pretty much the only time other bike kids talk to me is when I'm on this. I've long grown tired of that front wheel. My original fondness of it was more of a nostalgia for BMX mags.