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1:28 pm - Mon 8/12/02
Parable Of The Combination Lock

The Parable Of The Combination Lock

There's something I haven't mentioned in here, and if I wait too much longer, I'm going to forget it...

Last Wednesday night, at the bookstore, I was talking with Bill Sanders, an old gent who's one of our "regulars", and the subject of my stolen bike came up.

When he heard about it, Bill offered a spare bike he had as a replacement, for free.

So on Thursday morning, I walked over to his place, a few miles away, to take a look at the bike in question.

It was a very old, woman's ten speed, a Schwinn, and while it did actually work, the gears were kind of messed up, the tires were bald, and the brakes seemed iffy.

We spent some time tinkering with it (Well, he "tinkered"; I mostly held the bike up), trying to get the gears shifting more smoothly, then we both rode it around the block once or twice.

Ultimately, I decided it wasn't something I wanted, even for free, which was a pretty hard decision for me to make at that point (Not knowing Cary was going to buy me my new bike anyway).

I decided that since biking has become so important to me out here, I wanted/needed a bike to be something I was comfortable with and comfortable on, if you follow me. And I thought taking this old bike, which I was tempted to do, even though it wasn't what I wanted, would have been "impoverished thinking".

But anyway, all that said, I think it bears noting that there's been a lot of generosity centered around my recent loss of a bicycle; Joe giving up his bike for a time so I didn't have to go without, Bill offering to give me this old ten speed, and Cary buying me the bike I have now. That's a lot of giving coming from one stolen bicycle.

And maybe that's the "lesson" I was supposed to get with the theft of my bike--When bad things happen, I won't be left to twist in the wind. There are lots of good people out there, and given the chance, they'll help you if you let them (I had one day where I didn't have a bicycle, which I think is pretty amazing).

Another thing about the bike...

I told Lauren recently that maybe one reason I wasn't more upset about the bike getting stolen is that I just knew I'd be replacing it. I didn't know how--Whether it would be buying something used, putting something on the credit card, or borrowing the money from Cary--but it was just a given that I would quickly, one way or another, have another bike, cause that's what I wanted.

I think that would be a good assumption to cultivate about other things in my life as well; Just assume that the things I want are going to happen, and that it's only a question of how.


(Damn...the clock's running out on me here, and I have about a zillion other things I want to say...)

This happened Thursday morning, on my way to Bill's house to look at the bicycle...

Some sort of maintainance truck drove by in front of me, hit a bump, and a lock fell out of the back of the truck.

Curious, I bent down to pick it up, but thought to myself, "Well, a lock without a key won't do me much good...".

Then I looked at the bottom of the lock and saw it was a combination lock. And I thought, "Well, a combination lock without a combination won't do me much good...".

Then I thought, "Well, the lock is open, so I wonder...", and I memorized the numbers it was set at right then, and that turned out to be the combination.

So the moral of this story, boys and girls?

Don't give up on a problem too soon. The solution might be closer than you think.

See ya later...


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