To the pissant who stole my lights

To the pissant who stole my lights:

Thanks for doing that while my bike was parked in front of Bikerowave.  That made a lot of people uneasy.  Regarding the personal distress – I could have done without that.  Bikerowave has a sliding scale policy so if you’re having trouble making ends meet we can help you out.  Sliding scale means you pay what you can afford to pay.  We have that policy because myself and the other two founders of Bikerowave, as well as the volunteers, believe in helping people out.  I hope it helps you out – please note that we cannot accept my lights as payment.

Anyway, I was a little pissed you did that, but I went inside and bought two nice new lights from Bikerowave.  Because I’m a volunteer at Bikerowave I get a 40% discount – admittedly not as good as your 5 finger discount, but I get that discount on $1000 frames and Dura Ace crank sets, so it works out better in the long haul.  Knog lights and flip flop hubs are also available!  I was able to buy these things from Bikerowave in part because I co-founded the space, and helped make sure it was healthy, and collaborated on the contract to move to that new spot.  Isn’t the new location great?  What’s coolest: when I needed some cheap lights, it was no big deal.  I helped build a little safety net for cyclists in LA, and now even I benefit!

This is called “MAKING YOUR OWN LUCK.”  That’s what I did – I took some luck (lucky brains, lucky family, lucky health) and I levered it up into more luck.  Luck so deep we all benefit.  If, kid, you can MAKE YOUR OWN LUCK a little more often you might graduate from stealing lights to stealing saddles, or stealing front wheels.  I heard about a guy that steals handlebars!  This one guy, George Bush, he even stole two elections.  He’s kind of punk though – don’t be like him – his luck did not benefit the rest of us.

If you make your luck long enough my friend, if you spread it around to your friends and cultivate it, you can punch your own ticket.  This is called being a KINGPIN.  You’re not a kingpin yet – you need to work on your mojo (see section MAKE YOUR OWN LUCK.)  I haven’t reached kingpin status, but I know one thing kingpins don’t do is sweat the small stuff.  It’s not a great idea to steal from a kingpin, I heard that’s true for sure.  Some of them are temperamental (see SCARFACE.)  In the interest of being more kingpin-like I’m not going sweat this petty theft.  Kingpins are generally better to work with than victimize with petty crime – kingpins just don’t play good victims.

I would like to leave you with a passage from Jadakiss & Styles P:

Fuck… the.. frail shit
Cuz when my coke come in
They gotta use the scales that they weigh the whales with

(Jadakiss is a kingpin – probably Styles P also)

I could easily send you to God

(Styles P can mess you up – don’t steal his lights [see SCARFACE])

But come and see me at the Plaza Hotel I might give you a job
If you can’t remember the name
All you gotta do is ask the dame for the niggas that deliver it hard…

(Jadakiss is more interested in working together, if you’re willing to not steal his lights.  Also, he is probably good in bed.)

A special note, from this Jadakiss to Bikerowave’s own Styles P – get well Mihai!

Alex Thompson

Bikerowave co-founder, Cyclists' Bill of Rights co-author, President of Bikeside, and Math Phd. HULK SMASH straight from Michigan!

7 thoughts on “To the pissant who stole my lights

  1. I got my light front light stolen in the middle of the afternoon on a Sunday at the riteaid at the corner of Venice and Centinela about 2 months ago. I had it for 4 years. I was inside for 10 minutes. Thankfully my rear light and panniers were still there. Bikerowave seems to be in a deceptively sketchy area. Stay well.

  2. I’ve had two bike lights stolen in the last two years. People laugh at me know as I have a cheap mini flashlight tied by a string for a light. I know it’s not legit what else do you do? Take the light off everytime you park your bike?

  3. One of you should investigate what they did in Amsterdam to decrease their level of bike theft which, at one point, was about 30% I think. Not sure what they did, but it did dramatically improve. We were also told that people who commute by a combo of trolley and bike have two bikes–their regular bike which they ride to the trolley station near their house and their trashy bike which they pick up when they get off the trolley and continue to their worksite. Theory is they don’t care if the second bike is stolen. The bikes in that city where everyone rides everywhere are not the fancy-schmanzy kind you see in LA.

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