(Photo by Gary Kavanagh)
Some noir protagonists sit in smoky bars downing whisky neat to pass the time in this cold, cruel world. Bike Girl has a different addiction. Hers involves slouching over a keyboard browsing craigslist for the perfect other bicycle.
Bike Girl once heard that the appropriate number of bicycles to own is N + 1 bicycles, with N being the number of bicycles one already owns. Anyone who knows anything about Math can see that this could lead to financial ruin. Or at least, a space issue in one's studio apartment.
Due to a lapse in willpower and the negative influence of a colleague, Bike Girl has made yet another impulse bicycle purchase. She now owns not one, not two, but four bicycles. (Three of which are functional)
Bike Girl justified the purchase, saying that by buying this bike, she would actually be paring down her collection. This bike was supposed to serve the functions of two of her other bicycles, which she promised herself she would sell. While parting with one of these may be possible, Bike Girl is extremely attached to the other.
It is not a particularly great bicycle, but Bike Girl's hopeless romantic side has formed an emotional connection with it. For one, it is Bike Girl's favorite color. For two, it has fenders which are good for the beach or for the occasional puddle. For three, Bike Girl rescued it from the bottom of a pile at the co-op and nursed it back to health with pure love.
While bicycles are certainly a wonderful functional machine for transporting people and things from Point A to Point B, they are also simply wonderful machines. But if Bike Girl continues to appreciate them as art pieces, friends, and souvenirs, she may have to find a larger apartment.
Haven’t had enough? Bike Snob describes the N + 1 phenomenon in this entry.