TCI Friday

Here it is, your weekly discussion topic. Please contribute, so we can get to know you better or learn something from you.

My mother buys stuff, gadgets and cheap nonsense to organize her already painfully well-organized life. She said, “I bought this little collapsible garbage can for my car, and they were two-for-one. Here.” I might need a garbage can in my car, but I don’t want a garbage can in my car. I took it, as she handed it to me, because that’s the path of least resistance. Flow like water. Be like air.

The Shimano RC3 road shoe is EXACTLY the sort of thing you’d find in the shoe rack by my basement door. Integrated seamless midsole and upper construction set a new level of fit, stability and lightweight performance. Off-set center flap mounted BOA® L6 dial creates a sleeker profile with quick adjustments. Flow like water. Be like air.

So I brought the thing home and faced the dilemma we all face when given something we don’t want, “What to do with it now?” Throwing it away feels terrible. Finding someone else to foist it on feels slightly better. Determining some alternate use, some way to incorporate it usefully into your life is the best you might hope for.

Now, all my spring/summer cycling gloves live in a small collapsible garbage can inside one of the two baskets, which themselves we stopped needing for their original purpose, where I keep cycling caps, heavier gloves, clear glasses, and other bike riding bric-a-brac. This is a catch-all spot by the basement door, the last stop on the heading-out-for-a-ride tour of the sprawling mess of my cycling gear.

Organization is difficult for me. Most of my strategies mirror my thoughts, which are scattered, fanciful, and poorly disciplined. That I might gain some measure of control over my riding life by receiving a collapsible car garbage bin is as funny as it is dumb. But needs must. Flow like water. Be like air.

I know I’m not alone. My friends’ basements, most of them, look like this too. A basement is where ugly and only marginally useful things go to be ugly and only marginally useful. In some ways, the hodge podge of repurposed coat and shoe racks, milk crates, laundry baskets, plastic bins and simple, open floor space is beautiful, like an art piece about the hopelessness of trying to bend life to our will or whim.

My friend Chapman, despite maintaining the most frenzied, cramped and ridiculous basements of our whole crew, DOES have his gloves clothes-pinned to a line from lightest to heaviest, making them easier to find and easier to choose from. It’s as inspiring as it is hilarious.

This week’s TCI Friday wonders how well situated your situation is. Is a metaphorical ‘yard sale?’ Or do you have a well-curated series of labelled bins in which everything has a place? Do you come back from a ride and drop your stuff wherever you’re standing? Or are you good about post-ride cleanup?

We have these t-shirts. They’re black. They have our name on them. You’d look good in one.

Join the conversation
  1. rides in be says

    Great question. revealing. I so want to be more dialed in and organized, a place for everything and everything in its place. For now I have 2 boxes with clothes under the bed and a few bags in the shed where the bikes live. While the structure is minimal my main strategy is minimal purchasing. My hope is that if I only have a few things I really like and use then I can and will keep up with it all.

  2. Dan Murphy says

    Ha! My work area in the basement is a mess. I hate it. I have no idea what to do with the stuff, so a lot of it just lies around. Yes, I have a bunch of tools up on the wall, so that looks good, but the rest of the stuff is a mess. I keep saying I’ll get it organized sometime…..

    Years ago, a fellow club member offered to help me fix my R/C glider and I went over to his house and down to his basement. This was a retired guy, absolute gem of a guy, who was world-renowned in a particular aspect of model gliders. He was also a retired engineer and had a huge CNC machine in the basement. He was replacing that with a newer, better CNC machine which was also sitting down there waiting to get put online. And this was a small basement. Of course, the place was a model of organization with a place for everything and everything in its place. I felt so inadequate, kinda like when you hear about some over-achiever who has a full-time job, volunteers to help kids with disabilities, volunteers for an animal shelter, is a very good keyboardist and plays in a band, travels to 3rd world countries to build schools, cooks for a local food kitchen, bakes a mean apple pie, and in his spare time (yes spare time!), restores furniture to give to the elderly. Yes, I felt that inadequate.

  3. Jeff vdD says

    Well-curated bins for kit/accessories. Reasonably-well organized shop/repair space in the basement. Good about post-ride put-away.

    None of this surprises anyone who knows me. Control freak? I prefer control enthusiast.

  4. trabri says

    My cycling life is a facade of organization. Inside nice pieces of furniture are tangled piles of clothing. My bike shed, looking great from the outside, hides stacks of bikes with tools spread out and parts in all manner of unmarked bins and boxes. The other day I headed out on a ride only to find I had mis-matched gloves on! Sure I would like it to be better, but it works well enough for me.

Leave A Reply

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More