Friday, May 07, 2010

Free Bike!!!! Social Experiment

We came into possession of a bike this year. London is very bike-friendly, not like Sydney where every car will try to ram you off the road into the gutter. So when it was warm enough we borrowed Kylie's Dad's Bike.... Great Bike, rode it to work, got fit, who needs a tube pass????

Unfortunately Kylie's Dad's Bike had been sitting in Kylie's backyard in the snow and rain for a year so it was mildly dangerous. We took it to get fixed but it was clear it was on it's last legs. ie: You're at the lights about to pedal off and the pedals fall off the bike.

So we brought a new bike (i like referring to myself like i'm in a group.. like Gollum. the preciouuuuuuuuussssssssss) So we's brought a new bike we did. Dirty Hobbit'ses.

But what to do with the old bike?? lucky we had permission to throw it on the street. But that would be too easy. We could just throw it on the street, OR we could throw it on the street and do a social experiment at the same time.

SOCIAL EXPERIMENT: Will people steal a bike if there is a possibility the bike might kill them.

Notice I didn't say how exactly it might kill you?? it might be the sort of bike who creeps into your house in the night and puts bleach in your milk.. or stands behind the doorway and shoves a knife in your back when you get up to pee.

Anyway: back upstairs to the kitchen so we could watch the bike to see how long it would take for someone to take it.

At first people would just walk past the bike and read the note. We even had a gang of youths come past and they didn't take the bike (granted they were already on bikes, but you would think youths would be the prime candidates for bike stealing)

In our haste of the social experiment we put the bike in a pile of garbage, which didn't put the bike in a nice light... sure it's a free bike but you don't want a free bike that is parked in a dirty diaper and bolognaise sauce.. So we moved the bike across the road and under a nice tree, and success!!!!!!!! 30 seconds later our first potential bike thief.

Man parked his van, read note on bike, took bike for a test ride, then put bike back. I think the note put him off.... "hmm i wouldn't mind a free bike, but a bike that might kill me?? i think not"

40 mins later and no one had taken the bike. This is London right?!??!?! "dangerous" london?? "dont move to london cos you'll get robbed and raped and stabbed and sold drugs at the tube" london?? pfffffft. I must live in the safest neighbourhood out there because about 30 people walked past that bike and didn't falter.

Until this guy came along:

He read the note and threw it to the ground. Clearly a guy who laughs in the face of danger. Then two seconds later he was on the bike and riding down the road. Good Luck Guy, hope you don't think "brakes" are an important safety feature on a bike.

If that bike kills him I take no responsibility. It came with a warning.


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