January 9, 2009 3:47 PM   Subscribe

BIKEFILTER: I lost my friend's bike and need to replace it before he finds out.

My friend is like 6 feet talls and he likes to ride very relaxed. The bike he had was a hybrid but i don't really remember anything else about it. I knew that it felt pretty tall when i (5'9") rode and lost it. Anyway, I want to get him a replacement with a budget of 500 hundred dollars. What yall thinks?
posted by defmute to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (23 answers total)
What? Tell him what happened, and tell him it was your fault, and that you will replace it.
posted by niles at 3:50 PM on January 9, 2009 [5 favorites]

I think you should tell him and still replace it, rather than trying to pass off a new bike as him and deceive him. Wouldn't you want a friend to be honest with you?
posted by teamparka at 3:50 PM on January 9, 2009

That is, he'll probably notice it's a different bike. Just ask him.
posted by niles at 3:51 PM on January 9, 2009

(A new bike as his, rather. I imagine "passing off a new bike as him" could prove...problematic for everyone.)
posted by teamparka at 3:51 PM on January 9, 2009

Are you kidding? Writing a TV show? If it's even slightly different then he'll know, unless by "relaxed" you mean "high."
posted by swift at 4:00 PM on January 9, 2009 [7 favorites]

How do you 'lose' a bicycle? Fess up.
posted by fixedgear at 4:05 PM on January 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

Are you kidding? Just tell him that you lost it and that you'll buy him a replacement. He'll tell you what bike it was and then you buy it.
posted by k8t at 4:05 PM on January 9, 2009


Are you asking for recommendations for a bike that you can present to him with an apology?

Or asking us to guess what kind of bike it was from that description so you can pass it off as his?

Either way: bad plan. If it's the first scenario, I sure wouldn't want someone else to pick a bike for me. Better to own up and take him bike shopping.

If it's the second scenario... I repeat... what
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 4:07 PM on January 9, 2009 [3 favorites]

Yeah, tell him you'll buy him a new bike, and take him shopping.

Besides, if he had a hybrid, he probably was embarrassed by it anyway and wouldn't mind the opportunity to upgrade to either a road or mountain bike.
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 4:15 PM on January 9, 2009

If he rides a hybrid and was comfortable loaning it out, I strongly suspect he's not much of a cyclist and would be very very happy getting $500 (or whatever seems fair market value) instead of a new bike. The only reasonable thing to do is offer up the cash and apologize profusely. You don't remember anything about the bike except that it was a hybrid and you "felt pretty tall" when you rode it. Lying and replacing his bike with a new one seems like a sure-fire friendship ender. Owning up and giving him cash seems like the best thing to do.
posted by kate blank at 4:38 PM on January 9, 2009

Good you didn't lose yourself in the process. I guess what I'd do is ask about what his budget was when he got that bike, or am I missing something...

[Yeah, 'before he finds out indeed'. If this was a live question, I'd look for the hidden camera. Won't you tell us what happened? We're all dying of suspense]
posted by Namlit at 4:44 PM on January 9, 2009

Here are your options, as I see them, in order of desirability:

1. Find it.
2. Very apologetically tell him what happened.
posted by box at 4:51 PM on January 9, 2009

(I think the replacing the bike idea is very, very bad, but I also think that you remember more about it than that it's a hybrid. What color is it? Upright bars or drops? What kind of shifters? Toe clips? Again, though, I think that replacing the bike is a bad idea. No matter how high dude is, he'll know.)
posted by box at 5:01 PM on January 9, 2009

As everyone else has said, there is no way from your description to know what make or model the bike was, much less what it was worth. Do the right thing. Tell your friend what happened, and replace the bike.

Also, what's with the "pita" and "baba" tags? Mezza munchies?
posted by thinman at 5:26 PM on January 9, 2009

Seriously, you're going to have to tell him. Unless he's suffered some sort of traumatic brain injury between the time he lent the bike to you and now, he WILL know it's not the same bike. There will be scratches, dents and quirks that you will not be able to replicate. This isn't a can of coke or something.
posted by barc0001 at 5:45 PM on January 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

I don't really know how we're supposed to help you replace the bike without him finding out about you losing it when you didn't say jack about the bike in question. We can't really guess what it looked like. Also, this is one of the strangest questions I've seen in a while.
posted by dead cousin ted at 5:54 PM on January 9, 2009

I would get him a matchbox car sized toy bike with a $500 check and tell him you "lost" (huh?) his bike and would like to make amends. This is all you can afford. If it is less, keep it and buy me a beer while I tell you the story of how I lost your bike or if it is more, I will get that to you when I am able (or Cain).
posted by JohnnyGunn at 6:32 PM on January 9, 2009

If a bike you borrowed was stolen or misplaced while in your possession, at least give the owner the respect to choose his replacement, rather than trying to foist a roughly similar bike off on him on the pretence it's the original.
posted by zadcat at 7:30 PM on January 9, 2009

I'm not a big fan of searching a poster's comment history, but it has been over 5 hours of radio silence and this:
also, i should note that for the past week or so i've been sleeping at 11am and waking up at 7 pm. i've also been smoking about a gram of weed a day.
and a few other indicators lead me to suggest that you really may want to try cutting back to, oh I don't know, .5 grams? Or not. But yeah, take your friend bike shopping, maybe at your friendly neighborhood pawn shop. And don't tell them you have 500 to spend.
posted by dawson at 8:16 PM on January 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

@dawson: I did the same thing and had a similar thought.

@kate blank: I've done half-centuries on a hybrid, thank you very much! My old Trek 730 isn't too different from my new Surly LHT, other than the Surly's smoother ride, drop handlebars, Brooks saddle and Berthoud fenders. OK, it's pretty different, but it's not a bad bike...same fat tires, reasonably upride riding position, same preference for comfort over speed.

@OP: if this post is serious, you've got to 'fess up and tell your friend what happened. If it's a good story and you plan to make it good, he might not be too upset.
posted by brianogilvie at 8:25 PM on January 9, 2009

The main issue is that if it's only an inch bigger or smaller than the original, it will feel very different on a long ride. In other words: even if you get a bike that feels and looks like the original to you, it may be very uncomfortable/terrible/unacceptable to him. It's a matter of safety, too. If your legs slip out of pedals for whatever reason and land on the ground, and the bike is higher than it should be.. could lead to a v. painful bump in the nether regions. Just listen to what everyone else is saying.
posted by rainy at 10:13 PM on January 9, 2009

If he rides this bike more than once a year, he will know you've pulled a switcheroo, and I guarantee you that you will lose him as a friend.
posted by randomstriker at 12:42 AM on January 10, 2009

Mod note: a bunch of lulzy comments removed - please don't do this here, thank you
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:13 AM on January 10, 2009

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