Fixed gear bikes are everywhere in Melbourne-town. And the people who ride them just won't shut up about the purity of associated riding pleasure.
One notable common feature they tend to have - along with the fixing of the gears and the tendency to self-construct the bikes - is a distinct lack of breaks. This means that the foolhardy or the crazy ride along with no real quick-breaking mechanism. Drunken jaunts are a mine-field.
I have a friend who rides one.
A fixed gear bike, of the self-assembled variety, without the braking system.
She hurts herself regularly.
Of course it's usually someone else's fault - a hastily opened car door without the necessary care or awareness; a swerve without looking; etc.
Nonetheless, the non-braking, and, ultimately, the cuts, bruises and scarring... well, they're all hers.
Once day, after a particularly serious incident which took off chunks of facial flesh, a few friends of mine and I sat down and discussed this issue.
Yes, there may have been a beer or two involved.
Yes, we may have been more than a little pissy by the time we made our decision on the topic.
An intervention / fundraiser for brakes for her bike, called
"Help -(insert name here)- Stop"
It would be a riot of fixie-obsessives and friends, a show to end all shows, with a serious message, and a need for persuasive goal-setting!
Then we sobered up.
*yes, this is a classical allusion to the comic classic Pinkie and the Brain