The Bike Story

How do you know that Spirit is real? How can you prove that there is any intelligent design to life and its meanderings? This is the “Bike Story”, one of the most dramatic events in my life, uncensored, put out here in cyberspace for your entertainment. It was the event that proved to me the existence of intelligent design, of what I first understood as karma, or the boomerang effect, and how I did in fact, contrary to my stubborn desire to remain a spiritual child, have control over my “reality”.  Life wasn´t just happening to me, I concluded.  It was manifesting what I was thinking and charging emotionally.

Questioning our environment helps us to mature emotionally. This is how it works, down here in our three dimensional hologram on Earth that we call “reality”: as part of the hologram, our inner environment is reflected in our outer envrionment. Now I know there are lots of books about how you can manifest your own reality by focusing on holding a thought charged with an emotion, and more recently, reports “the observer effect”, in which the outcome of scientific experiments are manipulated by the expectations of the observer. These are all valid expressions of the laws of our holographic reality.  Today I´d like to share how I came to know that our actions and behavior directly influence what happens to us. This is known to my friends as “The Bike Story”.

In 1998 I was living in Montreal at the tail end of my university studies and I was working as an English teacher part-time.  This is part of my personal history that I´m not always comfortable sharing because I went through a rather dramatic learning curve. Life was showing itself to me in facets that I could either digest or ignore to my peril. As I fumbled through the matrix of young adulthood, the mysteries were being broken down to me as if I was looking at it through a kaleidescope and I was able to put together some rather lucid mystical connections at this time despite my emotional immaturity. The first major “law of reality” I learned is that free will exists, or more basically, what you reap is what you sow.

I had a new gig as an English teacher and a very small time window to get from my last class to my job. I had therefore decided a bicycle would get me to my job in the shortest amount of time. I didn´t have any money to buy one and felt that I should be able to casually come by one if I looked hard enough.  (Please try to refrain from judging my behavior here- I am laying it all out for you for your benefit, I am not proud of this.)  Sure enough, one day up in the Mile End neighbourhood I walked past a pharmacy with a ten-speed propped up against the bricks.  The bike was unlocked and not in a new enough condition to convince me that what I was doing was wrong, so I knicked the bike and pedaled away. Montreal is full of daunting hills- the city is named after the massive mountain that protrudes from its centre. It was raining that day and I soon discovered that this swift, weightless bike had no brakes.  I deferred any analysis of this irony  to Murphy´s Law and somehow managed to get the bike safely home. The next day I took it to a shop to have the brakes reparied, costing me about $7.

Days went by and the bike did the job of getting me to from point A to B on time. One day I parked it as usual outside of the music building and found a seat in the lecture hall for my History of Jazz class.  When the class filled up some ten minutes later, a smallish young man plopped down next to me and excitedly blurted, “Hey. You  won´t believe this.  I had my bike stolen two weeks ago and I just saw it parked outside. The person who stole it has to be in this class”.

Really?” I feigned incredulity.  “That´s crazy. Where was it stolen?”

“On Bernard Street”.

My heart started to pound in my chest as my fears were confirmed. What were the odds that the bike I had stolen would belong to a fellow classmate now sitting beside me and recounting the whole affair? “So, what are you gonna do?” I  asked. He said he planned to wait outside and approach the thief when he went to retrieve the bike.  I was fully aware of the choice I now had to reveal to this student that I was the one who had stolen his bike, yet I was too cowardly to come clean and too stubborn to give up the bike I was now benefitting from.  Guilt lingered throughout the whole 90 minute class and I fought with the angel and devil sitting on either shoulder. Now I ask why I didn´t just listen to my feelings.

After class I left the lecture hall and crossed the street to the music library, where inside I found a seat by the window looking onto the bicycles. I watched my classmate smoke endless cigarettes, his face becoming more and more despondent as he waited for the bike thief to show up. After two hours he had finally had enough and abandoned his stakeout.  How truly beastly I was, that after I had safely retrieved the bike, I picked up a can of spray paint on the way home.  Needless to say, I never parked the bike at the music building again.

Months went by and the guilt that comes with doing something wrong but not getting caught for it faded. Until one day I was forced to look at what I had done with different eyes.  Some people may call it sheer bad luck, but it was no such thing for me.  I told you that as a rather stubborn student of the mysteries, my soul often would resort to hitting me over the head with a wooden plank after its efforts to whisper words of wisdom into my ear went unheeded. Like a spoiled brat, I refused to believe that there were consequences for my actions. I thought I could just do what I wanted.  Well, I found out I could do what I wanted, but consequences would come, either way.

It was a Monday and I had a final exam for a Contemporary English Poetry. In fact it was the last exam I needed to take to graduate from my Bachelor of Arts program.  This exam could not be missed because I had already asked for a deferral due to my failure to accept the responsibilities of being a student, namely studying.  Naturally I woke up late on the day of this exam.  As I passed one of my roommates in the hallway, he suggested I take my bike to school. “You´ll only be ten minutes late”.  Right, I thought, take the bike, good idea.  In a sleep-addled panic (and somewhat hungover, to tell the truth), I crossed the park and began the steep descent from Mount Royal on Avenue du Parc towards the school “ghetto”.  This consisted of a long and narrow concrete ramp with a guardrail meant to keep any pedestrians from being wind-blown into oncoming traffic of the busy parkway below.  As I entered the ramp I hit a small stone, which began immediately the struggle to maintain control the bike. In the sharp descent I had to consciously steer in the direction of the bridge´s concrete buttress to avoid being thrown over the guardrail onto the highway.  The impact was stunning: I totaled the front end of my bike and felt a rather large goose-egg forming on my temple.

I proceeded to walk down the rest of the ramp with the bike in tow, determined to attend my exam, despite many of the pedestrians walking up the ramp who kept stopping me to ask if I was alright.  It wasn´t until the fourth one personally escorted me to a clinic in the mall at the bottom of the ramp that I knew why everyone had been so concerned. There was blood pouring down my face! (I had been wearing a red sweatshirt) By the time my stitches were sewn up and I was released, the time window to write my final exam had closed.  I did have a doctor´s note, but since I had already deferred it once before, I was forced to re-do the entire two-semester class the following year. This meant that I wouldn´t be able to graduate that year.

Was the accident related to my having stolen the bike? It might have been just the result of not being awake enough (or sober enough) to ride it.  But since the accident, I have had FOUR bicycles stolen and one other minor accident where I was thrown over a car. It kinda makes you wonder. Duh.

I experienced a bout of sciatica right after the bike accident so that I was laid up for a few days. During that time I had plenty of time to think about the direction my life was taking and what kinds of calibration manoeuvres were prudent.  I began to entertain mystical questions of cause and effect and whether there was such thing as a punishable god.  After much deliberation, I felt that I had even been given a compassionate opportunity (by the universe, I still didn´t believe in my own creative power at that time) to make things right, yet my refusal to do so meant that I had to experience what I put out there.  I learned that it was wrong to steal and I never stole anything else in my life again. But more importantly, I learned that in the fabric of the universe the charge of actions and thoughts have a ripple effect.  Maybe it was dumb of me to never have realized this before, you think. But having spent most of my teens reading Sartre and Camus, I was not only an atheist but in my university years, a nihilist. I did not entertain thoughts of intelligent design. Life just happened to you regardless of your moral proclivities. Murderers got away scott free it seemed, while innocents and do-gooders were jailed and raped and bombed to smithereens.

Now get this.  It wasn´t until this past summer, in 2011, that I really FELT the repercussions of having stolen a bike. Yes, I made all the appropriate mental connections and I learned blah blah blah. My fifth bicycle, a beautiful Dutsch style white city cruiser, was stolen outside my apartment building during the night. I cried for 2 days. It still upsets me so much that I refuse to buy another one. We had a relationship that involved my riding the bike through the city and around the lakes, my feeling free, the wind blowing through my hair…..  Sigh.

Got any great moral of the stories?  Leave a comment!

Love Croaker.


5 responses to “The Bike Story

  1. Wow, that’s quite a story, Debra. It would seem that you really needed a very powerful message with a distinctive theme to drive this existential truth home. I imagine that if there were any lingering doubts before your fifth bike got swiped, there are none now.

    I believe we all have something in our character that is in dire need of a swift kick in the butt. A lesson that necessarily keeps returning back to “sender” over and over until we really get it.

    It was fun reading about and recognizing the locations you described. I used to visit the Mile End Library often too, but I was there during the late 80s and early 90s. And…I used to get there and back on my bike ! Which I am so glad was never pinched. 😉


    • Demitra, Yeah, my “return to sender” message was definitely- things here are not random!!! I had the victim mentality, big time.

  2. My guess is that recognizing our lesson for what it is isn’t enough, perhaps because we may still be attached to the wrong underlying feelings about the matter. It is when we own up to “it” in an open and public manner with others (as you have done here) that our perfect karmic release is at hand.

    • With respect to the bike, I really believe it´s coz I never felt remorse about it. It wasn´t until I had emotionally invested in a bike (I rarely get attached to things) that I was able to experience the boomerang effect on the emotional level. That needed to be cleared.

  3. Yes, we may sometimes be able to intellectually grasp that there are connections between stealing and being stolen from but until we can connect to the feelings that were generated within the person whom we victimized by our actions, there is no true clarity. Remorsefulness allows us to finally stand inside that persons shoes and to unequivocally Know the whole truth of the event that we initiated.

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