I'm a bike vandal!

Discussion in 'Commuting' started by Bollo, 11 Oct 2007.

  1. Bollo

    Bollo Failed Tech Bro

    Greetings all. I only ever posted occasionally on C+ when I reached Grandpa Simpson of angried-upness, so apologies for not saying hiya sooner. Hiya!

    Anyways.....I've been getting grumbly about some of our town centre cycle-stands being filled up with 'bikes' that are kitted out with advert boards, menu's and bunting. None are in a rideable state.

    I know it sounds petty, but I don't see why shared facilities (I pay my council tax etc...) should be permanently annexed by businesses. A couple of weeks ago I nagged the City council, but despite talking to a nice, sympathetic sounding lady, nothing seems to have happened.

    Today, I'm riding into town with my little girl on the back of our tandem and, sure enough, there's nowhere to park. I'm less than chuffed, so I grab one of the advert bikes and pull it to one side to try and get enough space to lock my rear wheel in the sheldon-brown approved style. The advert bike jams up with an abandoned frame locked to the same stand. I give the bike a solid kick, partly to unjam it but I also partly in annoyance, and over it goes. B*llocks to this I think, so I just stick my rear wheel on top of the now horizontal adbike and lock up.

    Before I go on, I should describe the adbike. It is to functioning bikes what the Mary Rose is to functioning battleships. It is sprayed lilac all over, including wheels, hubs, freewheel, cranks, pedals and chain. All mechanical parts are seized with a paint/rust combo. The rear has a hashed up ad board. It has no saddle. It has been there for months.

    After locking my bike I turn round to be greated by "That's vandalism! How dare you do that to somebody else's property!". I confess now that I didn't put up much of an argument, but this gentleman's debating style was a little left-field...
    Him - "I live in Winchester! Why don't you go back to London! That's typical me-first behaviour! Go back to London."
    Where to begin. First, he may live in Winchester, but he's got a broad Glaswegian accent. Not a strong start when playing the 'local' card in Hampshire. Second - my daughter's stood there in a local school uniform - A clue that I also might just live in Winchester and not be on a killing spree from the smoke. Three - WTF has that to do with anything!

    We exchange some (non-swearing) pleasantries but then I notice my daughter's getting upset so I broke it off.

    I 'fess up to giving the adbike a good kick. I'll pay for a replacement. I'll pay for fifty replacements (a fiver the lot should cover it), and deliver the bugg3rs to the front door of the company that thinks its a good idea to take up bike spaces as a way of dodging street hoarding rules.

    PS The Doris works in Oxford, and there's a veritable "Great Leap Forward's"-worth of abandoned iron in that city, so I know I'm being fussy.
  2. Cab

    Cab New Member

    We get a few of those bikes here, and it can occasionally be hard to lock up your bike. I don't know what the legalities are, although I don't see anything wrong with covering up the ads with a real bike.
  3. domtyler

    domtyler Über Member

    Personally got no problem with destroying these wrecks.
  4. OP

    Bollo Failed Tech Bro

    ...and welcome to the forum!:blush:

    What cracks me up is that the businesses think this is a good idea. For example, when looking for somewhere to eat in an unknown town, do I:

    (a) Consult a guide book, such as 'The Good Food Guide'.
    (:angry: Ask someone who knows the town for a recommendation.
    (c) Go in search of rusty ghost-bikes with menus maccano'ed to the seat stays?

    It doesn't take Alan Sugar, does it?
  5. You are a disgrace Bollo.

    Why couldn't you buy some parrafin?
  6. OP

    Bollo Failed Tech Bro

    Think of the CO2 emissions man! If you really want to destroy something, resting the full weight of a Thorn kiddyback on top of it is reasonably effective.
  7. Good call pal.
  8. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Miserable Old Bar Steward

    Bit of Nitromors paint thinners poured over their painted ad board should render it useless.

    How about going back at night in a white transit pick up, hi-viz jacket and bolt croppers, anyone will think you are working for the council clearing debris.
  9. bonj2

    bonj2 Guest

    why would anyone use a bike as a thing to put an advertising board on? I don't get it. You never see that up north.
  10. OP

    Bollo Failed Tech Bro

    As you'd expect, the security used by the adbikes' owners is not A1 (Sold Secure Cubic Zirconium anyone?), but who in their right mind would steal these horrors? The bolt croppers might be overkill, but I like the idea of dressing-up.

    I was more interested in the "have-a-go-hero" who took exception to my Basil Fawlty-like outburst. I view these bikes as nothing more than litter, so I was taken aback when matey stood up for the rights of the small businessman. In a weird way I admire the lad.
  11. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Miserable Old Bar Steward

    The one next to it was probably his cafés ad board !!
  12. Abitrary

    Abitrary New Member

    I could *never* read an initial post that long. It's like walking into a stark 1960s concrete council tower block and getting stuck in the lift for eternity.
  13. BentMikey

    BentMikey Rider of Seolferwulf

    South London
    Talking about advertising on a bike, I've put my own details on the tailbox of my recumbent.

    Apparently if you buy a velomobile, you can just about entirely fund the purchase through advertising. Something like one of these:
  14. asterix

    asterix Comrade Member

    Limoges or York
    That's good isn't it? Even better, in York I have seen huge barrels of beer being delivered by bike..
  15. Arch

    Arch Married to Night Train

    Salford, UK

    But there are advertising bikes in York. There's one advertising a cafe by Cliffords Tower, locked to the racks in Tower Gardens (only visible of course when the gardens aren't under a couple of feet of River Ouse floodwater). It does at least look as if it's rideable though.

    I'm sure I've heard of a council (maybe York) ordering someone to remove such a thing, because it contravened a byelaw on advertising.

    And of course there's the sprayed blue bike always locked to the drainpipe of the Blue Bicycle Resaturant.

    Hey Bollo, I'll be in Winchester next week visiting my sister, so I'll look out for bikes to kick...:blush:
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