Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Dear Sugar

We have to talk.

We've been together what ... three years now? I still remember our first ride. I pedaled you up Emigration Canyon - pavement, oh the indignity. But on the way back there was something about you - something so young, so enthusiastic - that coaxed me to veer onto a trail. We shot down the narrow singletrack, both knowing that I possessed the handling skills of a three-legged dog. But you were so smooth, so responsive, that I suddenly felt I could do no wrong. You might say that was the day I fell in love with mountain biking. Love at first sight. If only it could stay that way forever.

I always loved the way that, despite your specialized status as a full-suspension cross-country mountain bike, you were willing to be anything for me. You were my trail bike, my winter commuter, my snow bike and my road warrior. You were my endurance racing bike, my expedition bike, my training bike, my recovery bike ... even my touring bike. But the years go by, Sugar, and things change. I've changed. My focus started to narrow. My needs sharpened. I need sturdy and versatile, something that's as friendly on the road as it is on trails, something that's designed to be everything but can still be that one thing I need. And I'm sorry, Sugar, but it's no longer you.

So now it's time we go our separate ways. I want you to know that I wish the best for your future. I hope you find a good home, with someone who will dote on you and travel with you and love you and yes, even abuse you as much as I did. Because you're strong enough, Sugar. You're the strongest bike I know.

I'll never forget you.

Love, Jill


  1. That is the cutest, weirdest, sweetest, and lovely-est love letter ever! I totally got made fun of for selling my bike on craigslist as "looking for a FUN home" (but it DID go to great kid) - I'm glad to know I'm not the only one that does it! Sugar will go to the RIGHT person. Go ebay!! Thanks for sharing all your adventures Jill, I totally look forward to them each day! :-)

  2. "...your item will be shipped within 2 business days via fedex ground which usually gets to you in 5-9 business days from ship date"

    Wait a second, FedEx ground isn't an option out of Alaska?

    And 5-9 days, after the way they treated Pugsley? You're a brave girl.

    Just kidding, I personally have never had anything bad happen when shipping bikes via FedEx. And I've done that alot.

    I too get all weepy when having to put something like a bike up for sale. You should put your sentiments to poetry.

  3. Jill, please....keep the bike, send it to a taxidermist and have it mounted in a faux sno scene..put it in the living room and hang the clothes on it you don't want to fold...yet. Who else in their right mind would have went 350 miles with you in the freezing snow. pleeeze

  4. To a cycling-world outsider, this letter may be perceived as cute or slightly laughable. But, to the community of riders who understand what relationships develop after sharing thousands of miles amidst nothing but beautiful landscapes, soul-searching morning rides, epic struggles during rides that become man vs. nature adventures, and blissful moments when you and the bike slip into and become another euphoric element of the natural world (sun, breeze, dirt, bikey), this letter is completely understood. I sold one of my favorite bikes last summer, and I literally screened those interested and made sure it was going to be used and cared for. Thankfully it went to a guy who was going to use it to ride for four months in the mountains of Europe. I love thinking about all of the beautiful trails and landscapes she saw...

  5. Being a straight guy, I find it quite impossible to form a love affair with my bikes.

    I fix them up the way I like them, I ride the hell out of them and then I toss them if I see something I like better.


    Corrales NM

  6. I sold my Specialized Rockhopper several years ago, and I still go through guilt trips for doing so. Now I'll just retire the bike, but it stays with me...


  7. well, im a straight guy too, but i very much identify with this letter. youve moved on. youve changed and the bike hasnt

    good luck

    i like the fedex dig

  8. I got this letter once. I hope Sugar doesn't waste money on flowers and mix tapes like I did.
    Word of advice? Get the restraining order now. You don't want to see that thing hiding in the bushes as you ride the new rig!

  9. Hilarious post Human!


  10. Oh that's so nice. I admire your ability to let Sugar go. I am such a selfish hoarder! I could never part with a bike I've had so much history with (actually I could live 10 lifetimes and not accumulate all the cycling experience you have had).
    If you love something and you've fully experienced all that it has to offer maybe you don't feel the need to cling on to it jealously.
    Good on you. And thanks again for all the awesome adventure writing.

  11. My first real mt bike was an '01 sugar and although she now feels a little small and has a few noises in her joints, I can't let her go. We went out for a ride yesturday and it felt so good to be out in the sun. She is a road bike only now - her front fork is failing and she just bucks me off to much on the trail. I miss her friends calling asking if sugar can come out and ride!!!

  12. For sale: GF Sugar- pretty much ground to dust- waterlogged bottom bracket at no extra charge.

    sounds fair to me.

  13. I just got two new bikes myself. A singlespeed and a new road bike. Not to worry. Being a straight yet practical guy, my old singlespeed is about to become a bamboo trailer.

  14. As a man who still rides his 1990 Trek 7000 ALUMINUM mtb with high tech, shock absorbing cro-moly fork, I find this post hilarious. You are stronger than I.

    TG http://tuesdaygrimp eur.blogspot. com/

  15. Ah, yes, Craig, you must have those revolutionary new round chainrings, too, to go with that wonder alloy - chrome/molybdenum.

    Don't forget to zip your toestraps.

  16. Aww, that's so sad. I had to retire a beloved bike, my very first own buildup, not long ago.

    I should have kept it.

    I hope you don't regret it!


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