The six years I worked in a bike shop I became aware of the critical inflections of, “Dude.” Also, I dove deep into bike porn: wheel and tire sizes, mid-compact crank vs. compact crank, SRAM vs. Shimano, number of spokes per wheel and it goes on.
I had been the oldest guy (by decades) at the bike shop for a few years. “Dude” was like ants feeling up each other’s antennae, figuring out the smells and directions and a tribal handshake. Also, truckers hats, flannel shirts, trashed shorts, high dark socks, ride the shit out of your rig and forget about tomorrow.
“Mandatory Meeting,” the bike shop manager said. “IPA’s and pizza.” I rode my bike down to the shop. “We gotta be better, guys. Talk to people and be nice. Somebody has to clean those bathrooms and I’m looking at you, Manny.” Manny flips the bird. “Okay, good meeting. Any questions?” Another IPA and I’ll ride back up the hill and wonder at the young manager.