I was sure I had finally outwitted you. Ever since owning my ride - a Huffy dirt bike with Mongoose racing pads - I have been forced to deal with the very ugly reality of bicycle thieves. Culled from a subculture of amateur or frustrated kidnappers, bike thieves are no less insidious for all their failures. These guys - and one girl, who everyone thinks is a boy until she skids her dirt bike to a stop, removes her helmet, and reveals beneath it a long mane of beautiful girl hair, tossed to and fro in super slow-motion while the boy thieves ogle her slack-jawed and consumed by social and sexual confusion - steal bikes quickly and ruthlessly, never minding how long it took their owners to find the right basket or fill the spokes with baseball cards (the expensive foil kind!). They snatch up bikes, then take them to shady chop shops down by the piers, where motley teams of colorful ex-cons strip the bikes down, repaint them, and occasionally dance and lip-synch to an old, but once popular rock and roll song. (it is at this point the sole african-american chop shop mechanic slides out from beneath an expensive bicycle and, hearing the classic rock, makes a disapproving face. then he slides his walkman headphones over his ears, jacks the volume up, and begins bobbing his head rhythmically to what surely must be a rapping song as he slides back beneath the bike.) But how to outsmart these clever thieves?
At one point I thought I should get a bike lock. Then I reconsidered. Too expensive, and too easy. The thieves would see that one coming a mile away. So, for a while, I only ride my bike around police stations. I would circle the Atlantic Avenue station 480 times for a serious cardio workout, or 250 times if I was in the mood for a more casual, scenic pace. You would be surprised how boring this became, and how quickly. Feeling frustrated and helpless, I even considered having my bike melted down and turned into a suit of chainmail. That's when I had an idea.
I made a quick trip to PEARL paints and art supplies, and purchased two shopping bags full of anti-theft devices. I got home and, in a funny montage sequence set to XTC's "Senses Working Overtime" (the highlight of which is me chasing a neighborhood dog that has absconded with a roll of colorful streamers, the crepe paper making a long trail from his muzzle. i chase him off-frame right and then, later in the sequence, i chase him - and a different roll of streamers! - in the opposite direction. yikes.), I set to work on my secret project.
Two days later the project was abandoned. And then four weeks later, motivated by guilt, it was completed! I covered the bike, bars to seat, in pink and white fur. Using glitter and elmer's glue, I bolted a rainbow flag to the back of the bike. I had the words "THIS VEHICLE STEERS QUEER!" emblazoned across the support bar. I painted a picture of a bearded man's face, eyes lit up and mouth open suggestively, directly on the bike seat. I rigged up the horn so, when squeezed gently, it would release a stream of Bumble & Bumble leave-in conditioner and rainbow confetti. Then, for the coup de grace, I called a computer genius friend of mine - who hacks under the alias WarezW0LpH but whose real name, ironically, is Francis Horlick - and he hooked up an audio loop that triggers when you pedal the bicycle. Now, whenever you start pedaling, the bike broadcasts the voice of an effete man saying, "MEOW." The faster your pedal, the more quickly the audio loop repeats. This means, as you speed away, the grandly festooned vehicles practically screams, "MEOWMEOWMEOWMEOWMEOWMEOWMEOW!!"
So far, the bike thieves have kept their distance, no matter where I leave the bike. Unfortunately, I have tried to steal it no less than three times.