A young couple had been in the Friday before to test some low-end road bikes a co-worker had transferred up from our Seattle store the weekend before. They had spent some time looking at the bikes before taking them out to the parking lot for a test I ride. She was too afraid to take the bike much further. Actually she was too afraid to shift, or even pull the brakes, deciding it was safer to coast to a stop, putting her feet down just as the bike started to tip over.
“Be honest, if we buy these cheap bikes will we regret it?” She asked
“Yes” I answered without hesitation. “Here let me show you something.”
I put her on a $1200 carbon bike with Apex. Again they went for a test ride. Her on a great bike and him on a basement model Allez with Sora. She thought it was a bit big and asked asked me to transfer a smaller one for her. Then he asked.
“If I buy this bike am I going to regret it later?”
Again I answered without hesitation “Yes.”
I put him on 1200 dollar Aluminum bike with 105.
“I would race this bike” I told him.
“Without a doubt.”
That and a test ride did it. They paid cash and I even gave him a discount.
“I know this sounds like a meathead thing to say, but I’m 165, which is skinny for me. I want to get back up to 200 pounds, but will I loose if I decide to race?”
Since we were being honest I again told him the truth “If it goes uphill you will”
We talked racing a bit longer then gave him some homework to do before racing.
“We’ll see you Tuesday” Which is when her super sweet deal would be transferred
I was having a shitty day, but seeing his stoked made me forget my editorial malfeasance for a few moments and all parties left the shop happy.
On Tuesday I leapt off the counter I was sitting on when they walked through the door. It took me no time to pull her bike down from the ceiling and said hi as they passed me and walked up to the sales counter.
“Here’s your bike” I told her.
“I don’t have the money for it today…”
“That’s alright I can just keep it on lay…”
“… We bought a house” she said putting an end to this portion of the conversation.
“I don’t want to have to live with my parents anymore”.
I told her a story about giving up a car so that I could pay rent and not live at my parent’s house. She didn’t seem to care.
When I returned to the counter to refund her deposit I noticed her boyfriend, the one I sold a bike to on Friday was gone. He walked back as I handed the girl her deposit back. He was pushing the bike and my heart sank.
She didn’t seem to care, and maybe she shouldn’t. She’s making what most would see as the right decision. After all, in our society owning your own home is sign of having made it, or at least part of it. That’s not my view of this dream we call America, but I don’t claim to have it right either.
“I’m really sorry to have to do this” He said.
“That’s alright, these things come up. Congratulations” Zach said.
“Yeah Congratulations” I repeated
“Maybe once we get settled we’ll come back and get some bikes” he said.
“We’ll be here, maybe then we can go for a ride” Zach said.
I was quiet. Maybe they’ll be back.