Thursday 3 July 2014

I've been locked out....

I've been cycling to work for nearly a year now, and in all that time, I think I've only used my car to get to the office twice - both times when I had to get to an appointment in the middle of the day.  We're pretty lucky with the facilities at my office, to be honest: as well as a changing room with a decent set of showers and my own locker, we've also got a secure bike shed that requires a pass to open the shuttered door and contains metal loops bolted and concreted into the floor to lock your bike against.  

At this time of year, as you'd expect with the nicer weather, there are quite a few more people cycling to work.... but as there's plenty of room, this hasn't really been a problem.  I usually arrive at around 07:30, well before most people, so I have my pick of spots to lock up my bike.  When the place gets busy and you have to share a post, the form is for bikes to top and tail on either side so that you get as little in the way of other cyclists as possible.  It's just common sense, right?  Some people are clearly a little possessive of "their" post, and leave their locks on them all the time, but there's nothing really wrong with that, and generally it's a pretty harmonious community of cyclists feeling smug when the traffic is appalling to get offsite in rush hour.

Imagine my surprise when I went to the bike shed to cycle home the other day at around 18:30 and found another bike chained to the frame of my bike.  Not around the post, just around my bike.  I looked at it for a moment, not quite believing what I was seeing.  I then actually unlocked my bike from the post, as though somehow I thought that I would be able to take it out and ride home.  Sadly, no.  Some idiot had managed to lock their bike directly to mine and make it impossible for me to cycle home.  Brilliant.  I imagine it was an accident, but that didn't stop me trying to work out what I had done to warrant such an act of antisocial stupidity (my bike was a lot bigger than the one locked to it, so I assume only a moron would want to come back to the bike shed to find an enraged much larger man waiting for them).

My options seemed somewhat limited: wait for the guy to turn up and move his bike? Walk home? Ugh.  What a massive pain.  More in hope than expectation, I went round to reception before they closed and explained my predicament.  They called security.  Security turned up with bolt cutters.  They checked my ID - presumably to make sure that I wasn't a splendidly inventive thief - and then spent the next five minutes cutting through the cable of the bike locked to mine (I guess those locks have improved over the years, huh?).  They then put the bike into their truck and took it away.

Well that escalated quickly.

On the one hand, I'm delighted with the result and the idiot had it coming.  But I can't help but feel a little bit bad about what must have gone through his head when he knocked off work, changed to ride home and found his bike had completely disappeared.  

Well, let's not overdo the sympathy though, eh?  What a plum.

[This kind of post is the reason you read this blog, right?  Insightful, funny, thoughtful, challenging..... none of these things.  It's not even quite an amusing middle-class problem.  Well, look... I nearly wrote about how awesome Metallica are.  Again.  So count your blessings.  I've saved that for tomorrow instead.  Something to look forward to]

1 comment:

  1. Serves him right for locking to you. What did he expect would happen?