Thursday, February 5, 2009

Road Culture

So I went to the coffee shop where about half of my friends seem to work now for a visit and introduced myself to the one girl behind the counter I didn't yet know. She introduced herself in return and, gazing through the window behind me, asked, "is that your bike?"

Nothing was wrong with the way I'd chained it up, she just liked the looks of it. I don't have much bike pride, and, though mine is fashionably fixed-of-gear, I swear that was an accident of fate. But I don't mind telling people (as if it wasn't obvious) that it was made with spare parts, and I don't mind pointing out where local cycling enthusiast and bike fixer Randy Garcia used Mod Podge to create the unique paisley design on the fork.

So, before I even realized what was happening, we all trooped out of the shop to stand around my bike and discuss it. You know ... like a bunch of hot rodders. But, like, ecologically conscious. If Norman Rockwell was alive today, he would have shown up to paint us.

I think there's something in the American soul that needs to stand around vehicles of any kind and admire them. We can't seem to help ourselves. It's inborn. Or maybe it isn't.

Do Canadians act like this?

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