Yes, it’s the non-holiday shopping guide. I’m getting zilch.
It’s a form of capitalist torture to read and view every single Best Gifts for Cyclists guides. Man, I want just about everything — even gear for cyclocross and I don’t even have a bike like that. So many delicious goodies tempting my credit card and willpower.
Sadly, I’m getting nothing bike-related for Christmas. I spent all my money and more on my new Calfee Manta six months ago. Still in the financial hole on that one — that’s what dream bikes will do, unless you’re super rich.
I am buying bike gear for my daughter. She will be the beneficiary of a new Trek Procaliber racing hardtail since she has joined the high school mountain bike team. (As an aside, my mountain bike is 15 years old and the front shock is useless now.) My son was never interested in biking, a true loss for both he and I and our relationship, but the girl will hopefully get the bug. I’m praying that happens.
I look at her new bike as an investment in happiness, with the future promise of riding together and spending weekends on a trail somewhere, sharing the bond of a great ride in a beautiful part of California. It’s hard to connect with teens — even the good ones — so I’m happy to sink deeper into credit card debt if it leads to 4 years of closeness with my daughter. That’s money well-spent.
In fact, she’s getting a few bike things for Christmas. It’s a reminder of what an expensive sport it is in terms of gear. In the first team meeting for parents, the mountain bike coaches repeatedly apologized for how expensive it was.
In any case, there’s a new helmet and cycling eyewear with multiple lens and pedals and shoes. That right there will put you over $350. My wife just shakes her head and tries not to look at the Visa bill too closely. I hope to score a freelance writing project on the side to help cover all these extras.
At least I have the small stuff for her: pump, tire levers, spare tube, seat-bag, front and rear lights if she needs to borrow them. She has already lost my nice Capo long fingered gloves. She is also using the barely worn cycling shorts and jersey my wife had lying around. That was money saved and really, add all that up and you’re around another $300.
The again, we also shelled out money for the team bib and jersey and vest. We said no to the team socks and arm warmers. Don’t even remember the cost on that and hey, who’s counting at this point. You’re either playing or not playing, right?
I would be a good thing if my daughter falls madly in love with mountain biking. Then every dollar spent will have been worth it. If not, well, lots to sell on craigslist.