Sunday, June 29, 2008

Help me, help you

Long ago I made the weighty declaration to live my life in such a way that would be beneficial to humankind. Like Gandhi and Mother Theresa before me, I have vowed to sacrifice my own well being and luxury to help others; only instead of liberating countries or feeding the hungry I contribute by using my finely tuned, highly trained scientific mind in an attempt to solve some of life's slightly less pressing but no less irritating problems. There's no doubt that starving or being systematically oppressed can put a damper on letting the good times roll, but smaller problems too can have life-inhibiting consequences and thus should not be neglected.

In my quest to solve the problems of humanity and bring happiness to the world, I have decided not to be bogged down with matters huge, glaring and/or obvious. Instead, I focus on small conundrums specific to my time and place and habits. By focusing on myself I am really concentrating my already impressive talents into a tight, dense ball of genius; idea bullets to be muzzle-loaded into the musket of hope. As cohesive and logical as that may sound, there are unique difficulties in focusing on too small of a realm. Creating solutions for extremely specific or esoteric instances can lead to inventions like the hands-free umbrella, extravagant wastes of talent and time that don't even make you look good.

I have long been perplexed by the options available for cycling-related personal object transport. And by my ''C-" math-student calculations I am convinced that a substantial proportion of cyclists are too. My solutions took the form of numerous cleverly designed bags and pouches, of which I have since refined and streamlined in attempts to mass distribute.

In my first small-scale attempt at fulfilling this dream, I partook in the semi-annual R5 productions Punk Rock Flea market. This past weekend I unloaded a cornucopia of colorful canvas creations, my very own Camp Cupboard U Lock holster hip pouches, onto a charmless wooden veneer table at the Starlight ballroom. I was selling my bags along with thingys, doo-dads, and other curiosities at fair and affordable prices. Fueled by whiskey ginger-ales and cheese-fries, I espoused the numerous life-changing benefits of comfortably carrying U locks while looking really, really good. There were some onlookers rife with disbelief, some interested yet impecunious parties, and many passers-by using the derogatory term "fanny pack", but my spirit was high and my sales tallied up as pretty damn decent.

As scintillating as my stitching my be, I am begrudgingly aware that carrying stuff while riding may not be a true scourge of many of my peers. Many of my sweet, charming patrons did complement the logical design coupled with interesting and pleasing aesthetics, and thus reinforced and reinvigorated my mission. I wish to give a giant, sappy, and totally appreciative thank you to everybody that came out to visit my table, and to everyone that used their money on my table as opposed to someone else's, or even just stopped to chat.