Within the first month of living in Chicago our bike was stolen. We'd had it since 3rd grade. It was called, "The City Slicker." Clearly it belonged with us in Chicago. But someone else thought otherwise and stole it while we were on vacation. Tear... We are hopeful that someone out there is using it for a smooth ride, but assume it really went to the scrap metal yard for a fast buck.
For those of you living in Toronto and have had the same experience, you may be in luck to be reunited with your beloved bicycle. The New York Times is running a story about man, Igor Kenk, owner of a used bike shop, who was arrested on charges for the theft of 2,865 bicycles. 2,865!
"He's easily the most hated man in Toronto," said Alex Jansen, a filmmaker who has been working on a documentary about Mr. Kenk for more than a year. Apparently many people in the neighborhood were aware that Mr.Kenk's shop, The Bicycle Clinic, housed stolen bicycles. Neighbors came to accept it, and were often able to recover the bikes, if not outright, then for $30-40. Eventually police raided the bicycle shop, which was so full of bikes that the windows of the store had to be removed and bicycled lowered out by rope. An additional 200 bikes were recovered from Mr. Kenk's home and even more found in rented garages and storage units.
Amongst the seized items found was a bronze sculpture of centaur and a snake in battle. Interesting… The police are baffled by what Mr. Kenk was planning on doing with the abundance of bikes, but it seems obvious - melt them down and make more sculptures of part human, part horse creatures.
If you think your bike may be among those stolen, visit the Toronto Police website for times and locations of the bikes on display.
PS – If anyone has seen a royal blue mountain bike with the words "City Slicker" on it, email me. Thanks.
Via The New York Times, Image Credit: Peter Redman/National Post