A person's bike says a lot about its owner. Is it a top-of-the-line machine? Or is it a notch or two below? Is it merely a two-wheeled tool to get to from point A to point B?
Is it kept impeccably clean and well-tuned, or has it had the crap kicked out of it all winter? (Note: You can still have both — it just depends on how much time you have on your hands.) Fenders? A computer?
What about this: Is your bike an old Trek comfort hybrid with a downhill fork attached? Powered by a weed-whacker motor and driven with a bungee cord? Using a Nalgene bottle as a gas tank? What could that say about its owner?
It's easy to write this off as a string of increasingly outrageous absurdities, but this bike is very, very real. It exists. We saw it in Council Bluffs yesterday. (Of course it was in Council Bluffs.) Behold:
Then there's the Nalgene bottle. A NALGENE BOTTLE IS THE GAS TANK.
The bike's owner rambled out of the convenience store as we were leaving yesterday. We had 20 miles or so to go in what would turn into a climby, windy, 75-mile day. It was a very good ride. Hard, but necessary. I don't know how many miles the other cyclist in our midst logged that day. From the looks of it, this was a bike designed for transportation only — not for playtime, like ours. That's OK, because the bicycle is awesome in a number of applications.
Even so, this thing is borderline scary and most likely a bit dangerous. It's a lot like riding with Lucas, actually.