Sunday, November 25, 2012

New Tyres And Some New Lights

Worn front tyre.  Brought bike into laundry room to change tyres.

Day before Thanksgiving, I went on a ride with my sister Cate.  She glanced at this tyre and noted it was worn looking.  Indeed.

The new tyres on the wheels, waiting for me to put the wheels back on the bike.  Hooray for easy release hubs!  they are leaning against the now-removed old back tyre.
Winter may feel like it’s here, for part of this week, although I understand there may be thunderstorms by the week’s end.

Yesterday afternoon, while my sweetie took a short pre-Mass nap, I spent about ½ hour putting new tires on my bike.  As you can see, both the front and back were well worn.  I didn’t get the cheapest new tires, but one step up, which were available with reflective white sidewalls.  The bike shop man also said the tread was better and would wear longer.

Anyway, I don’t enjoy changing tires and kind of dreaded this chore, and I was not sure I would finish in the half hour provided.  But, when I got to it, it wasn’t as bad as I expected—there were really no glitches, just a bit of grunting and pushing and messy jeans and hands to clean up afterwards.  It settled the issue of whether I needed a quick shower before Saturday night Mass.  I did.  And so often in life the chore we dread turns out not to be as bad as expected, although it's rare that such an easier than expected job involves tools, a least in my case.

Anyway, I have a minor regret about tires.   Rubber inflated tires were invented for bikes before they were used on cars (just as urban streets were built for bicycles and horses before autos arrived on the scene), and were first used in Britain.  Where, in the 19th century and today, they were spelled “tyres.”

Tyres—what an elegant little word.  It makes tires look tired.  Indeed, changing tires is a tiring process, but I still say that by the late 19th century we didn’t have any reason to mess up the spelling of newly coined words for new inventions.  Of course, the word “tire” or “tyre” probably long predates the pressurized rubber tires that are now used on bikes—but if the then newfangled pneumatic rubber tires were first spelled “tyre” by their inventor, that’s good enough for me.

So join the tyre revolution with me.  I don’t like the pretentious spelling of theater with an “re,” which is a British snobbish abomination that is way too popular on our side of the pond, and they can keep that extra “u” in color, thank you very much.  But tyre?

I don’t tire of that y.  It’s just funky and cool.

Tyre, tyre, tyre.  Dig it.  From now on, if it's for a bike, it's a tyre, OK?

Meanwhile, I further winter prepped Old Blackie with some new batteries in slightly fading lights.  Just in time for the Christmas season, I have 3 rear and 4 front lights, so I’m ready for dusky rides, like the one I had to campus tonight.

Where there were some new Christmas lights on the U plaza.  Tis the season when night bike rides will be more illuminated with the glow of colored lights, which is an aid to me in this, the darkest month of the biking year!
End of the ride around 5 p.m. Sunday--getting dark and Christmas lights shine on the U plaza at Mount Mercy University.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.