One of the great things in life is to work in a bike shop. The unmistakable smell of the bikes and grease makes all bike shops smell the same. This, along with working with people who share in the great passion for bikes makes an entertaining environment. Then there is defiantly a hierarchy of the bike shop that kids of this generation do not seem to understand, comprehend or.... enjoy. One of the other great things to come out of this environment would be the random nick names given in affection to various workers.
Working in a bike shop, you are living in a fishbowl. Some customers can be demanding and want you to give them everything for below cost. And, others want their repairs completed immediately on their huffy because they are going to ride later that day. They say, “oh, I have some errands to do and I will be back in an hour”, two weeks later the bike is still hanging from the hook in the back. Or, they will wait and watch and question you as try to fix their bikes and can’t understand why they need $50 in more repairs because some kid at Walmart has set their beloved huffy up wrong.... but these customers tend to be the exception as most are fantastic.
As a mechanic working in a bike shop, you get to see kids who want to work in a bike shop come and go. These kids are put to the test almost immediately when they start to work, this can be a hard concept for some of today’s youth. Long gone are the days where we were taught that one must apprentice and learn as much as you can before you are handed a $5,000 bike let alone a $200 bike.
Bike shops today seem to attract their share of young kids who believe that they would like to work with bikes. Of these kids there are only a few that will make it until they leave for college. The people and the demand for work will soon weed out the kids who do not have attention for detail. But, it is the one kid who know their place in the hierarchy order of pecking that will earn the respect of the mechanics and ultimately the coveted nickname... one that they will use when they are around. As time passes soon the young will graduate high school and move on to college and this will be interrupted by the bell on the front door ringing as it is opened by another kid being cast into employment in a bike shop and a voice from the back will yell “Lets call him Pickles!”