June 5th 10:12am - Bike Karma

Over three years ago I loaned my then-boyfriend my bicycle. My parents had bought me the bike for my 18th birthday. At the time he borrowed it, the bike was in practically pristine condition, a black Giant brand, complete with upgraded seat, water bottle holder, and bike lock. I handed him the lock key with the bike, as confident as Jesus that he wouldn't harm it. I should have anticipated from experience that he wasn't Chuck Norris, but I had conveniently omitted from memory that he had once returned my car to me with one side mirror hanging, connected by one wire. 

A few days later he called, informing me that my 18th-birthday present bicycle had been stolen. 
"Someone cut off the lock?" I asked.
"Nooo... the lock is around the bike," he said, enlightening me that he still had the key. 
He was apparently under the impression that the garage our friend shared with two other apartments in San Francisco was as safe as a Swiss bank. San Francisco is a city where anything left on the sidewalk, even momentarily, is fair game for passers-by. My friends and I once obtained what appeared to be a new bed frame. We drove by and saw it leaning against a house. The fact that it was on the sidewalk, albeit leaning against a house, equated having a sign taped to it reading, available. I can only assume that someone cruising through felt the same SF rule pertained to unlocked bicycles posing in open garages like dogs at animal shelters.

My ex had left my bicycle in our friend's garage, unlocked. The garage door had been closed. He walked out of the apartment a few hours later to witness the door open and bike gone. 
For the past three years, my friends and I have harassed him. My friends have repeatedly gone on bike rides without me as he walked over to our apartment. They would locate him and then trail him on their bikes, discussing my lamentable bike-less state. He did send me a check for $300 one time to use in replacing my lost bicycle from years before. I tore it into three pieces and placed it in the trash. Cashing the check would have been an easy out for him, like my mother reasoning with me, "You have to do it because I'm the mommy and I said so." Additionally, I didn't want his money. I just wanted a bike.

While I was in South America, he emailed me asking what size bike I was. He might as well have asked me what the llama population per mile is in Lima versus Santiago. 
My life was previously unaware that bikes had sizes. I told him I didn't know, but was certain he could determine it himself. The next email from him I encountered educated me that he had bought a new bike. For himself. 
He told me this morning that he had ridden his bicycle to the California Academy of Sciences and had exited some time later to find it stolen. Brigades of bikes surrounded it, but his was the only one stolen. 

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