I have a Metallica shirt that was “handed down” to me by my brother ~20 years ago and that was torn from a tackle by my best friend over 10 years ago during a backyard football game. I kept wearing it torn around the house, and my mom took pity on me and sewed it back up with fresh patches of cloth.
This shirt survived many moves, thousands of workout sessions in wrestling, soccer, football, tennis, lifting, running. What the hell is life without those little things that are there with you most of the time along the way. A couple friends, a couple books, a couple shirts, a girl, family. That’s about it. Screw fashion and comfort. With those select few things, I like to be loyal, perhaps to the point of absurdity (in the case of the Metallica shirt).
That said, contradicting everything I just stated above, I did let go of an old friend yesterday (pictured left, with seat removed) without having to. I got it years ago (~4 years) for $70 at Walmart or Target, and it lasted me all that time without needing a single repair and without me ever doing the kind of things you’re supposed to do to take care of a bike. I kept it outside, so of course it’s rusted through and through. It still works perfectly fine, but is in the kind of functional-but-decrepit state that makes it the type of “gift” that only a hobo would appreciate. So I left it by the dumpsters, and of course, it was gone within an hour.
A quick note about money. I have a lot of friends that spend hundreds and $1000+ on a bike. They appreciate the kind of quality they get at that price. It makes them happy. For me, it’s easier to be happy with simple stuff. Living a spartan existence helps me focus on the content of life not the material accessories. Maybe it’s a bad thing, maybe not. I’m wearing that Metallica shirt now and am feeling damn good about it…