Wednesday, June 29, 2011


It's got to be here somewhere. I remember parking it between two cement columns about 6 or 7 years ago and haven't been able to find it since. Perhaps it was "borrowed" by some poor soul who desperately had to be somewhere faster than his/her feet could carry him/her.

If you see a bike that could be mine anywhere in the area please drop me a line.

Description: 2 wheels, silvery grey, nondescript frame
Suspected "borrowers": Everyone

If it was a theft, this one was a much more pleasant experience than the last time my bike was robbed. The last time it happened the bicycle thieves ripped the bike right from under me. It happened while my friend, Ray, and I were out for a leisurely bike ride one summer evening once upon a time in America. The gang of juvenile delinquents (aged 15-17) who pushed us into the path of an on-coming car actually pulled the bike (a brand new Huffy 12-speed that I got as a high school graduation gift)from beneath my fallen body. While we probably all went to the same high school together, their faces escaped me. They weren't exactly criminal masterminds though. One of the thieves slipped up so bad he even revealed the identity of another when he called him by name, "Dick Head." I remember him distinctly saying, "grab the bike Dick Head," which is what I told the police.

The officer said that the moniker fit just about everyone in the vicinity. It wasn't exactly the reassuring statement we were looking for after finally picking ourselves up off the pavement and dragging our aching bodies along the four-block-long stretch that led to the police booth. I think we were hoping he would say, "we'll comb the streets for this 'Dick Head' and have him in cuffs before the night is over." Instead we kind of got grilled by the on-duty officer who wasn't as impressed by the severity of the crime as Ray and I were. 

He began the investigation by making use of the urinal in the corner of the booth. While facing toward the plumbing, he called out, "What were they a bunch of mulenyarms?" Now, my grandfather had taught me years before that mulenyarm (not sure of the spelling) meant eggplant in Italian. He failed to inform me, however, that it had a second, derogatory implication and I wasn't deeply embedded enough in the Italian-American milieu to have picked it up on my own. The first thought that ran through my mind upon hearing the officer's question resembled a scene from the cinema classic, Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, only with eggplants in the role of the tomatoes. The image made the question doubly bizarre than it was in the first place and the night even more confusing than ever. By the time I figured out what he was talking about he had moved on to the next step of the investigatory process which made his question all the more clearer.   

He prefaced filling out his report with a few more poignant queries, the first of which went like this:

Cop: "What are youz two doin' in this neighborhood anyway?"
Us:  "We live here."
Cop:  "Oh. Well that's not really your fault then is it?"

It was another question that left me stumped in a night that seemed like one big test. Now here I am again with another bicycle problem and I'm as clueless as ever.

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