Around New York, you’ll see lots of bicycles locked to sign posts, fences, parking meters, trees. Some of them appear to be used on a regular basis and are in good repair. Some of them have probably been parked in the same spot for months, perhaps years, have been around longer than most of a neighborhood’s current residents and are sort of nonchalantly falling apart.
If a bike has been parked outside for very long, all kinds of things will have accrued to it: rust, dead leaves, paper cups, spider webs, families of mice. Some are missing essential components: tires, wheels, gears.
You’ll see some very spiffy, high-end, or not necessarily rare, valuable, or expensive but just cool European bikes, like the Dutch Gazelle, French Motobécane, or English Dunelt or Elswick bikes. I like the ’60s and ’70s-era Schwinn and Raleigh three and five speed cruising bikes. Raleigh made a line of bikes called Robin Hood, that had a name plate with a figure standing around in green leotards.
Name plates, stickers, and accessory details are fun to look for and photograph. Some name plates are pretty ornate, with great typography and design elements.
You can see more of my bicycle pictures at my Flickr Bicycle set.
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