Monday, January 25

Bike Stuff is Like a Drug

Recently, I related my little shopping trip to REI, where I fell in love with some Italian shoes. What I didn't clearly say was that the REI selection and variety of bike stuff dwarfs that of my LBS, which takes it's inspiration from whatever Trek happens to think they should carry.

Anyway, after my first toe cover experience, I decided to return them to REI, before the toe covers shredded, and get something tougher. NOTE - repeat visit - a sign of addiction.

Under 40F, do Fingers Freeze?

Anyway, I took back the Pearl Izumi Caliente toe covers and decided the PI Cyclones might work better. Cleverly, REI only had them in small so they're on order. Since I was there, I looked around and noticed a whole Universe of pseudo-helpful labels. So, what do three flames or 40F actually mean?

Do Three Flames Mean These Gloves
Are Warm or Are They For
Really HOT Days? And How do They Compare
to the Giros?

To make matters worse, despite Chandra's warning, I looked at bikes and panniers. Thank goodness - I got out after only spending $50. I'm safe until I have to go back and pick up those Cyclone toe covers...

Panniers, More Than the Mind Can Comprehend!


Chandra said...

Well, I am glad they have EAP at work. They need a BSAAP (Bicycling Stuff Addiction Assistance Program).

I tell ya, that REI is addicting not just for bike stuff but other stuff too. As you become a hard-core addict like me (I am hoping there is still some hope for you, my friend), you find reasons to go to REI and look at things or to meet your friends.

I shop for my better-half at REI. Well, actually while I am shopping for her, I find a thing or two bicyle related or camping related items, for me, which I also pick up.

The key is that on such trips, I start out with a selfless motive.

I am happy to know I ain't alone!

Peace :)

jeff said...

They do have all kinds of cool stuff at REI. Luckily(?)I don't have one near me. Used to be a Galyans but they sold out to Dick's!

Apertome said...

I really wish we had an REI even remotely nearby. Damn.

Chandra said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cycler said...

That's weird- the REI in Boston has a lousy bike stuff selection. tiny and completely uninterested in transportational cyclists. I wonder if there are so many good LBS's here that they don't even try to compete..

Steve A said...

I don't think the LBS theory works. Seattle has a lot of good LBS's AND the REI flagship store. My theory is the REI Boston manager needs to get with the program. Whatever the reason, the Dallas REI has more bike commuter stuff than any LBS around here. I'm either glad it's not closer to my house or wish it was closer.

Dallas isn't a great bike commuter place simply because it's spread out much more than a place like Boston. It makes it tougher to get where you want to go on a bike. The riding is fine if it's not too hot, it's just a LONG way to places.

Hmm, more thoughts about a good future post. Thanks, cycler!

cycler said...

I used to live in Houston and in rural Missouri, so I know about both hot and spread out. The thing about this REI is that they have lots of promotional posters for biking (like the Bike your Drive campaign), so it seems like they're into it, but maybe it's just coming from on high, and not really being embraced by the local management.
This particular store is practically on the BU campus, and close to Northeastern, and Berklee, not to mention with 3 miles of MIT and Harvard, so there's a ton of market in students getting places by bike.
In other respects, it's a good store, and where I go for other outdoor stuff. Maybe my tastes in bicycle gear are so esoteric that I have to go to a specialty place like Harris, and I consider myself incredibly lucky to be close to such a great resource.
They probably have a decent selection of spandex and goretex clothes, but their light selection, reflective gear and bells and mirrors are lousy and I can never find anyone to answer questions.

Eliot Landrum said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but REI in Boston likely has more snow gear than the Dallas ones do.

Steve A said...

I would love to live near Harris. Cycler; you go ask why the Dallas REI puts your bike commuter stuff to shame when they've got a far superior market. I will be watching you blog to hear what they say. Let me know if you need more Dallas REI photos to help make the point.

My REI also has a poor selection of bells and mirrors if that's any comfort.

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