"working on my faults and cracks..."


one for the yearbook

oky city version

This is what the Langster looked like, finally completed early last week--only three days before I was to take it apart and put it in a box to be left it in the hands of Delta Airline's dubiously capable baggage staff.

To say the box was packed hastily would be something of an understatement. Under the bus stop awning, under the fierce gaze of the bus ticketmaster, and still under the influence of the previous evening's festivities, my friends and I stripped the bike down, zip-tied bubble wrap and old t-shirts to the frame before tossing everything (re: all the leftovers that wouldn't fit in my suitcases--tools, mess bags, shoes, and a pile of other random shit) back in and taping it shut. Much to the driver's chagrin, the ugly parcel just barely fit in the bus's luggage bay.
Bloated cardboard box safe for the moment, off we went.

Upon arriving at Kansai International, only moments after checking it, I turned around to see the box already sitting at the bottom of a baggage cart--several other much heavier looking suitcases haphazardly piled atop. Nightmarish visions of my pride and joy being jovially pulled across the tarmac at high speed in some kind of baggage handler hazing ritual began playing out in my head as I made my way down the escalator to immigration.
I'd deal with it when I got home. Until then, it'd be in god's hands.

Sixteen hours later, the exhausted box finally emerged from the winding bowels of the baggage carousel with the rest of my luggage. Looking like a coffin belonging to some ghetto airport mummy, it must have been taped, and indiscriminately re-taped after numerous bouts of being thrown between airplanes and baggage carts. Ragged, gaping holes threatening regurgitation, replaced the once neat handle slots that guided the box onto the bus 7000 miles earlier. Despite the layers of bubble wrap and tape, the hub on the front rim had also managed to burrow its way through the cardboard. And the single loop of dime store twine, affixed at the bus driver's vehement insistence was frayed and torn, held only in place by being effectively buried under layers of cheap packing tape.

But the burly sunuvabitch made it. Two wheels, two pedals, a saddle and a set of handlebars.

Bring on the next city.

[Single Sentence Summary for My J-Trains]

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