I’m an approachable snob.

My 2nd week back at work is done with. It’s gotten easier being on my feet all day, but as apparent from my last two posts, returning to the public eye has been agonizing. After a year of getting away with being a plainclothes employee, I’ve been ordered to wear the work-issued tee. I don’t have any complaints about the tee itself: it’s tasteful, but I do not like that it makes me more approachable. I haven’t been this unapproachable, mentally, in years. Yann is the only person who I can comfortably make eye contact with right now.

Yet, I also suggested that Yann use his sewing machine to make alterations to the t-shirt, making it smaller every week so that it’ll look like all the training I’ve been doing at home has paid off.

Do I want attention or not?

Imagine customers coming into the bike shop and seeing us in “work-issued” crop tops? But I jest. I still dream of getting a tinted full-face shield.

Continue reading “I’m an approachable snob.”

Buy A Bike.

Certainly, a solid bit of advice, though more complicated than taking your credit card to a bike shop.

I’ve made a video that I think would’ve helped me in my pre-mechanic/pre-bike ownership days.

Despite being 15 minutes long, I’ve actually only shared the basics. I don’t think anyone new to cycling wants to watch an hour-long video of me blabbing about the fine points of bikes. Besides, I’d rather make separate videos discussing these points in detail.

Please note that I’m Canadian, therefore when prices are mentioned, I’m referring to our rainbow Canadian currency. A fellow deaf bike mechanic based in London, UK–and superfriend–Ed, has slightly different opinions on bikes as the standards are different over there.

Continue reading “Buy A Bike.”

I have a YouTube channel now?

If you think only important news should be captioned, it means the deaf community will only have access to the depressing stuff. Right after I uploaded the previous post, I started on a new post explaining how I came to move out of the parents’ place at 17.

Halfway through the post, I thought, “This is pretty melancholy so far. Do I want to post something like this immediately after writing about my inaccessibility woes?”

So, I ditched that post and instead put my energy into creating accessible content for YouTube.

Presenting…

Continue reading “I have a YouTube channel now?”

In case you missed it.

The other day, someone came into the bike shop for a hub repack. This is when we remove the axle and replace the bearings (either loose or sealed). What are loose or sealed bearings, you might be wondering?

It doesn’t matter.

As the guy handed over his wheel to Yann, he mumbled something about how he would have done it himself. Yann was technically still on his break, so the job was passed on to me. 

Continue reading “In case you missed it.”

PSA.

I know, you didn’t think you’d get any useful information out of reading my blog but, here goes: bicycles are for riding, not locking up outside.

On occasion, customers will come into the bike shop to have a stuck u-lock removed. Every time, we’ve been successful in getting it off, either with bolt cutters or with the angle grinder.

Today, a customer came in with a Kryptonite Evolution u-lock stuck to his bike frame. The u-lock wasn’t skewered through the rear wheel, which made the request to have it cut off not suspicious.

Yann agreed to do it: he had never cut through a Kryptonite brand u-lock and wanted to try. It’s supposedly one of the more secure u-locks on the market.

“If this takes more than fifteen minutes, we’ll have to charge you.”

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Stealthy, like a fat cat.

After being reunited with my phone after it spent the night in a Park Tool caliper case at work, I slipped it in my jersey pocket and prepared my bike for a long ride. Monday was a civic holiday: BC day. It was fitting that I had the day off while Yann, a Québecois, had to work.

It was going to be a warm day, so before leaving, I made sure to freshen the cats’ water dish. I waved goodbye to Bubble who was tucked into a cat loaf on the couch. Enfoiré, our round son, was neither on the couch nor in the cat tree. I checked the bed: not there. On the fridge with his front paws hanging over the freezer door? Nope. Had he slipped into the washroom without me noticing and was now gnawing on the plastic shower curtain? No.

In under 24 hours, I had lost my phone AND eighteen-pound cat!

Continue reading “Stealthy, like a fat cat.”

Oh, the ways you’ll hurt yourself!

I am now two weeks into my office job, and it’s already a pain in the neck. This can be attributed to a combination not having set up my workspace correctly and chronic neck pain. Although they are fine now, my wrists are also prone to tendinitis flare-ups. Strangely, these flare-ups are more likely to be triggered by the gentle motions of typing on a keyboard rather than by the brute force sometimes required in removing stuck bike components at my regular job.

Yes, I am excellent at injuring myself doing the most delicate tasks.

Continue reading “Oh, the ways you’ll hurt yourself!”