In praise of the Janky Bike

I have a very nice road bike.

And ………I have a very Janky Burning Man Bike.

And by Janky I mean this:   She is covered in dirty pink and purple fur-remnants of a year when I thought my sewing skills were going to make her look like an art car.

She has spots of gold spray paint-remnants of a year when I thought I’d bling her out and make her all gold but ran out of spray paint and patience.

One year, her back brakes didn’t work so I’d fly into other bikes and art cars and things (until my good friend Bob fixed her-thank God!)

One year, the front handlebars got all bent so I was perpetually curving to the right all of the time -again crashing into people.

But-my Janky Bike never failed me.  Year after year, she got me through thick Playa dust, faithfully across the way from the Pirate ship all the way to the Distrikt party and back again when I misread my Guide and forgot where the Bloodies and Bacon were.  She hung in there, basket hanging on by a thread, faithfully holding onto my water bottle and sunscreen, like a beacon through the night -ready to take me home.

Maybe she isn’t fancy with Shimano gears and Avid BB7 disc brakes-but she got me through it -day after day-Tutu Tuesday through Temple Burn night.

So, as I now start using my fancy road bike more and more, and I admire the carbon fiber frame and electronic shifting that it has-I still miss those moments when I’m blazing across the Playa in my Janky bike, rattling frame and all.

And, I know she’s waiting for me-stored with our camp bus- covered in Playa dust and fur- waiting for our next adventure.  Don’t worry Janky Burning Man bike– that fancy bike can never replace you!!!

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