Thursday, August 13, 2009

Can't buy me love

I stopped by Leawood Cycles to ask about the Blue River Bicycle Club team membership a couple of days ago. It was not quite what I expected. I talked with the owner, Ariel Mendez, and the coversation went something like this:

"Hi, my name is Jon Riekenberg. I'm interested in Blue River Bicycle Club. I did the Tour of KC races over the weekend as an unattached cat 5. I met Chad something who suggested I should talk with you about the team".

"What type of bike do you ride?"

That's an odd first question. "A Cannondale CAAD9."

"Where did you get it?"

What? Does he think I stole it? "From a shop that had extra 2007 stock and was selling them online. It was a really good deal, and I wanted the 2007 paint scheme. I assembled it myself, and I do my own maintenance."

"Are you some sort of engineer?"

This is getting weird. "Not really, but I like mechanical things, and I enjoy working on the bike."

"The team is mainly intended for customers of this shop. It's a way for them to join a team and race. If you buy a bike here, you can join."

Oh, I get it. "I see. That's different from the impression I got from Chad on Sunday. He made it sound more like anyone can join. I didn't realize that."

"Yeah. How did you do in the race? Did you finish?"

Wow. Seriously? No, I got lapped, quit, and now I'm here asking to join your team. "Yes, I finished. I got 11th on Saturday and around 11th or 12th on Sunday. I'm not sure about Sunday because they only placed the top seven." In fact, I later realized that I beat two of the three BRBC team cat 5s on Saturday.

"That's pretty good. I'll take your name and number and we'll think it over. If you become a customer, we're definitely interested."

So I gave him my name and number, but I think I'll look around for other teams if I want to join one. I'd like to be on a team because I ride well and can contribute... not because I bought my way on.


  1. Jeez, what an odd conversation! You should start your own team and call it "The BRBC Rejects" for all the people that don't "qualify" for his team!

  2. I like the idea of starting your own team! You'd show that mean bike shop owner!