So what was the first "proper bike" you had then? This was mine (not this one, mine was much rustier!), the wonderful 1973 Raleigh Traveller (problem was, it was 1989 when I came to own one!) My first NEW bike was a Raleigh Lizard. With the help of the LBS my mother and the sales guy carefully picked out a 23" frame with the saddle clamp rubbing on the top of the seat tube for a 5'8" me. Obviously mother didn't want to be a grandmother at any time as I could hardly even straddle the top tube! I tried to take the oversized beast off-road, couldn't control the huge thing and smashed the front wheel up. What I also did was weaken the frame as I found a week later when I had a low-speed bump and the insanely long steerer tube just folded inwards, the top tube stretching and down tube folding. Two weeks of shiny newness, then back to the '70s and '80s for a Raleigh Sensor. Which I crashed and bent - being preoccupied with the digital display Numerous 2nd hand cobbled together things got me about after that. Eventually I saved up for a Raleigh Mustang which got upgraded and altered constantly, with slicks and drop bars in one incarnation of its life as a camping bike, that I had for years without managing to break it! Hopefully the trend of me not bending and breaking bikes will continue!