One photo a day until I meet Jonathan Harris

14th March

Today I stole a bike.

This wasn't part of the plan, but sometimes exceptional circumstances call for exceptional behaviour.

I had first seen this bike about 4 years ago. Someone locked it against a post right outside where I was living at the time - a shiny new BMX. I liked the look of it so much that the next day I even stuck a note to it which read: "Nice bike! Want to sell it?" Eventually the note disappeared but the bike remained, day in, day out. Years passed and I moved to a different neighbourhood. Other bikes came and went, and I had completely forgotten about this particular one. Until today.

Riding through my old stomping ground this afternoon, I took a turn past my old street. As I approached my former residence I saw that due to an extensive roadworks project they had removed all the posts that used to be there. Amongst the machinery and other construction debris I noticed that quite a few bikes had been orphaned by their recently removed posts. It was in inspecting some of these that I suddenly recognised the BMX - the very same one I had stuck my hopeful note to almost 4 years ago.

Unfortunately time had taken its toll and it no longer looked shiny and new. The back tire was flat and the chain was completely rusted - it had clearly not been ridden in all that time. Some people (like Casey Neistat) would already feel its theft was justified. I instead considered the alternative fates that might befall this lonely BMX if I left it there by the wall. The probability that its owner might return to reclaim it seemed remote. With no one to collect it, it might be crushed beyond recognition by the rubbish disposal truck, or cut up without remorse for spare parts by professional bike rustlers. Or maybe someone more needy would take and use it.

But how many other people do you think had ever stuck notes onto this particular bike? I figured it would be better to honour a such a nice coincidence with an equally brave action. Is the beauty of a story worth more than the clear conscience of a clean moral record?

I guess only time will tell if I made the right choice.