Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Bike Shop Tales: Making An Impression

Last week I got into a little back round with my job situation pre-bike shop days. Now I was going to be working at a real bike shop......

Well, it was time. Tom, the owner of Advantage Cyclery, asked me to come in one evening to meet some of the staff and to learn what it was he wanted me to do. As he took me around the shop, he stopped me short and told me about one of the mechanics there that was working on his mountain bike. It was Duane. He was intently bowing over a polished American mountain bike. (American- that's a brand name, by the way!)

Tom said that Duane was a bit "tense" and that I should be careful. I said, "Oh yeah?", and an idea came into my head as we walked over to meet him. Tom introduced me, and Duane never even looked up.

I reached over and squeezed the brake lever that was connected to the canti he was adjusting and said, "You know, you really should tighten this brake up. It feels pretty mushy." Well, Duane's blood pressure went through the roof, and he sputtered a few half sentences before he shouted, "Do you know that I am a black belt?!! I could kick your ass right now!!" To which I calmly replied, "Well, go ahead. What are you waiting for?"

Duane sputtered, stood aghast, and stormed away. Tom giggled like a school boy. He thought it was brilliant. He couldn't believe I did it, but I think it endeared me to him from that point onward. The rest of the introductions went on and I left after I was told what my duties would be. I went home that night feeling apprehensive and unsure of myself. I suppose that was natural, but it didn't take long for me to get settled in.

The first few days were spent kind of standing around and observing. I helped customers a bit. The shop was an amazing place with all the brands and cool bikes that I got to hang out around everyday. Bianchi, GT, Fisher, and Diamondback, just to name a few. Tom also had quite a selection of road framesets there to buy as well. Then I started out assembling bikes at Advantage and still was helping customers for awhile, but a time period came up where things changed for a little bit. Tom had a satellite store with another guy, and I was going to become part of that operation for a bit.

Next Week: Working On The Campus

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