Working Bikes commonly uses the term bait bike.

Bait bike: (n). a. bicycle used to lure in potential bicycle donors. b. a sign to inform bicycle donors on where to make the drop. c. a bicycle used to lure potential bicycle thieves.

[In Detroit it’s a common belief that to steal a bicycle, is to steal from a child. Making bicycle theft almost null and void in that city.]


After my first ride, I’ve coined a new definition for the term.

Bait bike: (n). a bicycle that lures in men to have a look.

What a beauty!

synonym: chick magnet.

CARLY likes men!

The extra fork is the bright idea of Working Bikes lead mechanic, Aaron Brown, to scare away potential thieves. [More work].

This is apparently impressive. It also adds at least an extra 5 lbs. And works to better secure my super huge front basket. [Yay!]

Having three baskets provides plenty of room to act as a receptacle for people to use in order to dispose of their waste. Or, as in the case of a ride with the Midnight Marauders, an alternative to the ground as place to dispose of empty beer cans.

Providing guys with a fabulous reason to ride up to you (me)!!

While working to promote something that I already work diligently towards.

There is no away to throw something away.

Upon first being presented with my Man Magnet, I was also given an explanation as to why there were garbage bags stuffed into one of its back baskets: People are going to use it as a garbage can.

Oh boy! Do they ever!!

Before my bike was commonly referred to as the BEAST. [It is a freakin’ beast.]  Now, it’s truly made a place in my life by earning itself two new names: Man Bait & Man Magnet.


With all the extra weight I’m pedaling around, before long these legs will be better man bait too!


Fishermen are always looking for a shinier lure to assist in their manliness by helping them to catch a bigger fish.

My Grandma has a BIG catch mounted on the wall at the Lopata Family Life Enrichment Center.

I did in fact recycle all of the smelly beer cans from my baskets. Two were still full from the ones that my friends and I were pulling from. [Yay!] These were donated to the gentleman of Canal Port. They were still slightly chilled thanks to the shaded area my bike was left the morning before.

[I ditched the ride at 4:30A, once there was finally an EXIT at McCormick Place.]

Last Saturday’s ride was of the city’s underground.

It was a blast!

: )


Saturday was the Bike Winter Swap Meet. I attended the event as the Working Bikes Co-op representative. The event was held @ Jaks Tap in the West Loop and it was absolutely FANTASTIC!

Jaks Tap is known for having an exceptional beer selection (I perused the menu and they do!) West Town Bikes was located kiddy corner to me and they really did a good job at getting the party started. (I think, technically we are competitors, but who really cares). As soon as I got there and had my stuff down I looked up and saw trays of bloody mary’s being brought over to them. The day continued on from there: pitchers of beer, plates with burgers and fries, chips, more bloodies, more beer.

I had a bloody mary around noon so I didn’t stand out as a sober sally. (Oh and a note here: I love my bloody to be as spicy as it can come. Right- who doesn’t? However, this bloody had a world of pepper seeds sitting at the bottom, which added to the spice factor definitely. It kind of sucked getting a choking feeling in the back of my throat each time I took a huge sip from my straw).

Milan- a 60 something retired IT man turned serial volunteer says the beer flights are fantastic and can make you forget you’re watching any football game no matter how well the Bear’s are doing.

Okay, so I was introduced to this event by a man named Howard Kaplan. He’s AMAZING!

He looks like a real life teddy bear and he sort of reminds me of Winnie the Poo with his soft voice and somewhat hunched shoulders. Howard is a real mover/shaker/ do gooder here in Chicago and I really owe him big thanks! Everyone I spoke with had wonderful things to say about him.

“Howard found the building we live in”

“Howard was able to get these $60  maps printed for us for FREE”

There goes Howard moving toward the mic to announce everything that’s going on here at the Bike Winter Swap Meet and to check on how everyone is doing and to do whatever else gets thrown at him.

He really worked it!

It sort of reminded me of the end of Ground Hog Day once Bill Murray figures it all out and saves everyone’s life. Ya- Howard is that guy.

And now his presence has greatly affected my own life.  Thanks to him- THANK YOU HOWARD! I am now a paid staff member of Working Bikes Co-op. (To man their events, of course). I couldn’t be happier about it-really!

Sharing a table with me was an awesome gal named Elizabeth- who started Rides of Silence here in Chicago. She also sells some pretty awesome calendars of pictures she took herself to help support the cause.

I was unable to use my “IF you are feeling CHARITABLE” sign and tip jar due to lack of space. So I loaned it to her, and it was quite profitable!

Bike Winter was a great event for me to get my feet wet and it was also great for Working Bikes. I took home two sheets of names of people who are interested in learning more and I sold some stuff.

Carla- this awesome girl who crashed my birthday party was in attendance and we had a chance to re-connect. It was great!

Oh! And right before I left I had the pleasure of loaning my jumper cables to West Town Bikes for their rent-a-van. So, I’d say our relationship is friendly.

Without further ado, here are some pictures of the great table scape I set up.

And one picture of the man boy I met.

Find Working Bikes Co-op where the sun shines

Find Working Bikes Co-op where the sun shines

buy some

drink from

My table mate and I

My table mate and I

Man Boy

I’m calling him the Man Boy because he looks like a cute boy- but I learned (upon investigation) that he is in fact very much a grown man (38- wow).

No boy about him— except for his looks. He bought me a beer and said that if I gave him my number he wouldn’t call more than twice before giving up if I decide not to respond. So I said OKAY and handed it over. Telemarketers are more persistent than that.