So I was 'way late to an event with my family because I had an impossible deadline, and a very pissed off editor. I told my spouse, go, I'll catch up on my trusty bike, which I did -- with 60 seconds to spare! Woohoo!

I went home with my family, intending to get it the next day. By the time I went to go get it, it was stolen.

You have to understand, this is a bike with no intrinsic value to anyone but me. You could probably get one for ten bucks at a pawn shop. I'm currently in my mid-thirties -- I bought this bike when I was thirteen. It's old. It's beat up. The seat cover's been ripped for TWENTY FRIGGIN' YEARS. Yet, I am pretty disciplined about locking it up, and that day was no exception.

Nonetheless, someone destroyed a perfectly good city sign to get it. The cop who took the police report told me that he's seen bike thieves saw through a small tree trunk to get at old and rusty bikes.

People will steal anything, folks.

3:00 am. I happen to be up, wrestling with personal demons as per usual, and I realize that today is garbage day! That being one of my newly-established household responsibilities, I nimbly prowl the house, collecting the trash: my wastebasket, the kitchen garbage, the bathroom trimmings bucket and the all-purpose common room garbage can.

I lug them out, one by one, through our back yard to the back alley, hoping not to rouse the neighbours' dogs. Next out goes the recycling - the bag of newspapers, the bag of cardboard and other pulpy miscellany... then finally, the coup de grace, the city-issued blue box for metals, plastics, etc.

Back to my nightly dilemma. An hour and a half later, turning to my bookshelf for an answer to a personal quandary, I come across a scrap of plastic trash one of my roommates left, inappropriately, on the bookshelf. Figuring I may as well move as much of this junk out of the house as possible before succumbing to the inexorable blackness of sleep, I slide open the back door and again tiptoe to the alley to toss this new article into the recycling box.

Only problem being, it's not there.

Sometime between 3:00 and 4:30 am, someone had stolen our recycling box, complete with its massive and non-refundable load of soup cans, margarine containers and milk jugs, of which there remains not a trace.

Our trash. Some fucker stole our trash er, - our recyclable materials, I correct myself. But we worked hard to produce that bounty for the city collection crews! They'll think... they'll think we're not being good conspicuous consumers!

I scratch my head, decide I've been up too late since the world is starting to not make sense anymore, pad back into the house, lock up, put the piece of garbage back on the bookshelf and slip into the struggle of unconsciousness.

This story is more amusing than the account of the time our house was broken into with the only thing stolen being our broken answering machine because there wasn't actually a criminal stranger in the house with us at the same time.

It seems like this node should be called stolen bikes or pieces of my bike that were stolen, but I guess it will be more interesting as it is.

I've had two bikes in New York City, the most recent is chained up outside with its seat missing.

My first bike was stolen within three weeks.

Despite having two Kryptonite locks, the big, 20 pound, unbreakable chain for the frame and back tire, and a thinner "annoyance'" lock for the front tire. The current bike has had nearly everything on it pilfered over it's 3 year career. Keep in mind this bike is a bonefide POS. The locks cost more than the bike did. Replacing all the missing pieces cost more than the bike did. Lunch for a week costs more than that bike did. But, I'm tall, and the frame is big enough to fit me. Also, I really don't want to keep it in my apartment or carry it up and down the stairs everytime I need to use it.

Parts that have been stolen:
  • Rear de-railer (I think they were angry because everything else was locked.
  • Stem bolt for handle bars (nearly killed myself since I didn't notice right away.
  • Front tire (the one time I didn't use the second lock to tie it down)
  • half a handgrip (they tore it and took some of it?)
  • Rear brake cable
  • The seat mount (not the seat, not the seat-post, but the piece between the seat and the post, I honestly didn't even know there was such a part)
The replacement for the last stolen part is still on my desk, waiting for me to get over my cloud of futility and put the bike back together again. Of course when I do put it all back together again, I'll have to go to the bike shop for a tune up, which will probably cost more than the bike did in the first place.

Sometimes I think it's more effort than it is worth.

I, too, have had a POS bike ripped off from in front of my apartment building. For months it had been parked against a tree, its rear wheel Kryptonite-locked to the frame to prevent anyone from riding off with it -- so eventually, while I was gone for a weekend, someone decided to pick it up with the lock still on the wheel and take it away. I was more puzzled than annoyed, really.

But that's reasonably understandable. I mean, even if it wasn't brand new, it could've been worth a few bottles of Absolut to someone out there.

The kicker for me was when I moved into an apartment building in Champaign-Urbana and discovered that we had to use laundry in the building next door. Odd, but that's where the closest machines were. So the first time I went there, I figured, "Their building is smaller than ours. I'll just leave my cleaning supplies here. Shouldn't be a problem."

A week later, I came back to do the next load of laundry. Detergent was there. Dryer sheets weren't. For whatever reason, someone, in one of these buildings, stole my half-empty box of dryer sheets.

The things people will do to save $1.89....

When I was going to OSU and living in a dorm, I had to do my laundry in the community laundry room. I am a relatively trusting sort, so I put my laundry in the dryer after washing it, turned the dryer on, checked my watch, then went upstairs to wait out the dryer time in relative comfort. 40 minutes later, I came downstairs and got my laundry out of the dryer. I double checked the dryer for socks and other things that like to hide in the dryer, then went upstairs to put it away.

I had purchased some new underwear the week before, and had tossed it into the wash. I only noticed something was missing since I didn't have much in the way of non-white underwear at the time, and these panties were black. I had purchased two pair, and only one was in the pile of laundry. Since I always double check the washer and dryer when I take things out, I knew I hadn't left them behind in the laundry room.

Someone stole my new black panties out of the dryer!

I was kind of pissed off, but at the same time, I was confused. Usually when people steal underwear, don't they want the used ones? Anyway, once the underwear thing happened, I was really vigilant about watching my stuff when I did laundry. But, you can't be vigilant with everything, as I learned.

My mountain bike had quick release wheels, so I was sure to lock them up with a cable lock in addition to the Kryptonite lock. While I was in class one day, someone stole one of the nuts off my quick release wheel. When I got on my bike and started to ride away, the wheel began to come off the frame. I was able to stop in time, but I had to walk my bike home, then make a special trip to the bike store the next day to buy a new quick release nut to hold the wheel on.

I just don't understand people sometimes.

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