What Counts?

February 25th, 2013

Country/Day:      India/20

Bikes Fixed:                  43

Bikes/Day Avg:               2.15



This counts as a flat tire.

Fun fact: The screw went all the way through. Yup. It’s a long screw.

Is it that time again?


It certainly is.


Yes, I’ve been busy, but I’ll be darned if I don’t post at least once a week. Actually, this will just be a short post, and I have an idea for a longer one tomorrow (no work on Tuesdays, which I’ll explain in that post), and an idea for a shorter one after that. I traveled last weekend (which the longer post tomorrow will feature) which is why I haven’t posted recently.


Teaser: One of the places I traveled to. Serious kudos if you know where it is and what’s going on (hint: This only happens once every 12 years).


Anyways — theme for today: What counts?


You’ll notice I’m already on bike 43 and it’s only day 20. This is… well, awesome. In my mind, though, it’s also questionable.

“Two bikes a day!,” I think — “I must be cheating!”



Rickshaw drivers don’t cheat.


Okay, I’m not cheating, but I am wondering: What counts? When I started this project I said I wanted to “fix bikes.” Does that mean I have to spend a certain amount of time on them? What if I don’t finish in that amount of time? What if I spend twice that amount, or work on five bikes in that time?

If certain repairs qualify, are some worth more than others? EG, if building a set of wheels for a bike and then building the bike only counts as one, then what if I just build wheels? Or just build a bike (wheels pre-built)?

Lately, we have been building fewer bikes, and focusing more on customers (exactly what happens in the springtime, by the way — if there’s a shop that hasn’t stocked up by now, it’s already too late). This means I’ve been doing a lot of quick repairs —

“Kyle, could you true this wheel for me?”

“Hey, this headset needs to be adjusted.”

“Could you patch this tube for me?’

(that’s what I imagine they are saying, anyways, but they are speaking in Hindi and the only part I understand is the gestures and facial expressions)


Guess what this expression means.


Some of those things might take 30 seconds. Do they count?


If you’ve been following me on Twitter (which auto-posts to Facebook) you saw that post a while ago: “I fixed so many bikes I’m reconsidering the definition of ‘fix.’ ” This is what I was referring to. I fixed ten bikes that day. Did I cheat?


What’s your opinion? Comment below!


– – –


As a side note, today someone gestured “true this wheel” to me, and I responded by pushing them the spoke wrench (“You true it, I’m busy” — I was doing a brake adjust). He pointed to himself and said a negative sentence in Hindi and pointed to me and said a positive sentence in Hindi. Then he handed me the wheel and the spoke wrench. I took it to mean, “I can’t,” or “I don’t know how,” or “I’m not as good as you,” (…) “you must do it for me.”


If I’m right, then today, I was exactly where I was supposed to be. And that feels pretty good.

But maybe I’m getting ahead of myself.


Not that the view isn’t great.

More to come.



4 thoughts on “What Counts?

  1. Marilyn says:

    The Kumbh Mela!

  2. Marilyn says:

    It made the news here! Did you bathe in the Ganges?

    Kumbh Mela (/ˌkʊm ˈmeɪlə/ or /ˌkʊm məˈlɑː/; Devanagari: कुम्भ मेला “kumbh mēlā”) is a mass Hindu pilgrimage of faith in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred river. It is the world’s largest religious gathering, with 80 million people expected in 2013.[2] It is held every third year at one of the four places by rotation: Haridwar, Allahabad (Prayag), Nasik and Ujjain. Thus the Kumbh Mela is held at each of these four places every twelfth year. Ardh (“Half”) Kumbh Mela is held at only two places, Haridwar and Allahabad, every sixth year. The rivers at these four places are: the Ganges (Ganga) at Haridwar, the confluence (Sangam) of the Ganges and the Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati at Allahabad, the Godawari at Nasik, and the Shipra at Ujjain.
    Kumbh means a pitcher and Mela means fair in Hindi. The pilgrimage is held for about one and a half months at each of these four places where it is believed in Hinduism that drops of nectar fell from the Kumbh carried by gods after the sea was churned. The festival is billed as the “world’s largest congregation of religious pilgrims”.[3] There is no scientific method of ascertaining the number of pilgrims even approximately and the estimates of the number of pilgrims bathing on the most auspicious day may vary widely, from 2 to 8 million depending upon the team(s) of persons making the estimate and the rough method of making the estimate.
    Mauni Amavasya traditionally attracted the largest crowds at the mela, held here every 12 years. The day marked the second and the biggest Shahi Snan (royal bath) of this event, with 13 akharas taking to the Sangam. This was the biggest bathing day, 10 Feb 2013 at the ongoing Maha Kumbh Mela and probably the largest human gathering on a single day. Over 30 million devotees and ascetics took holy dip on the occasion of Mauni Amavasya.
    The current Kumbh Mela began on 14 January 2013 at Allahabad.

    • Kyle says:

      Read my next post to find out. :oP What do you mean the news!? Like, they talked about the Kumbh Mela, or like, you shared that I was there with Bear and Jenna? :o)

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