An Open Letter to the Complete Piece of Shit Who Stole My Bike Yesterday:
Thanks for the life lesson. Asshole.
Ok, I'll admit that my first reaction upon discovering that my locked bike had been stolen from the bike racks during daylight, in plain view of my entire office building, at least 20 smokers and multiple "security" personnel, was not to thank you. After all, it was only my second day taking my bike to work and, although the weather has been garbage and I'd just about drowned riding, I was really enjoying the extra 30 minutes of morning sleep and snuggles with my family that biking to work allowed me.
As an aside: by pure happy coincidence, yesterday was also the third day of Ottawa's "Bike to Work Month", which in hindsight may actually serve mainly as your peak business period rather than a month to encourage people to ditch their car commutes. You must really love it when all the pathetic, chump noobies on their pristine, rarely-used bikes take the initiative to ride to work and naively lock-up their bikes with only a single heavy rubberized cable lock. It must be just like Christmas for you. I can almost imagine the expression of pure joy on your face when May roles around each year. Like taking candy from babies.
But enough about that.
I also do confess that I did dwell for a few moments on the sad irony of the fact that as a result of the insane gas prices and our partially self-induced, child-raising vow of poverty, almost all of the plans we've been making for this summer were based upon riding our bikes around town. That, and the related fact that I also can't afford to replace my bike, let alone purchase the multiple locks that are apparently required to stake a claim of ownership to even the most mediocre bike in this town.
And, as a consequence of this line of thinking, perhaps may have had several pleasing thoughts about finding and dismembering or choking you with my own bare hands. In a moment of extreme weakness I was even (somewhat) shocked to find myself hoping that you'd use the (at best) $100 you'll get from selling my bike to buy smack from a shady dealer who cuts his product with battery acid and bleach so that you die with the needle still in your arm.
But, I aim to be a more civilized and rational human being than that so I'm attempting to move on from those petty, base emotional reactions and unseemly obsession with mere material objects. I've chosen to step back and see if there's something meaningful that I can learn from this experience you've created for me.
And so, I thank you. Dear, Anonymous Douchebag Bike Thief.
Thank you for showing me that the path to true minimalism and zen-like freedom from emotional attachments to consumer goods may be rocky and painful. And involve someone stealing your shit.
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to ponder what aspect/nuance about being the victim of this particular crime bothers me far more then when my husband and child were car-jacked at knife point. Perhaps it's because the car-jacking asshole didn't hurt my family, steal/damage anything of value to us and actually had the class to apologize when he realize a child was in the car. Still, it's something of an emotional and philosophical quandary that I'll enjoy exploring further during my once-again long walking commutes to work.
Thank you for waiting to steal my bike until just after my husband had a chance to spend hours learning about, and then fixing, the derailer so that the gears would change properly for the first time since I bought the bike. Perhaps, in the distant future when I can afford to buy another bike, he will be able to put those new skills to good use once again.
In fact, as a sign of my gratitude for the wisdom I will gain from this experience, I sincerely hope you were able to take the time to appreciate the pure aesthetics of how smoothly the gears transitioned as you rode my bike away. As a further gift to you, I hope you also enjoyed the brand new tire tube that my husband put in this weekend after I had a flat. Not to mention the perfectly inflated tires, freshly oiled chain and recently cleaned frame.
These are my hopes and wishes for you. Fuckwad.
I'd like to close with some wise words from someone far funnier than I: Bruce McCullough "An Open Letter to the Guy Who Stole My Bike Wheel" (and as a bonus for the spectators: "An Open Letter to the People Who Watched the Guy Steal My Bike Wheel").
Forever In Your Debt,