If you are looking to buy a mountain bike for the first time as an adult, don’t do it.
Don’t buy one.
Well, at least if your sole focus is going to be on that…buying the mountain bike.
And that is really easy to do given the eye-candy design of mountain bikes these days.
But if that is all you are looking to do - buy the mountain bike - then you’ll get one.
And possibly a good one.
Most likely online.
And for less money than at your Local Bike Shop.
And once purchased, the bike might get a few rides.
Then it will rust with good intention.
In your garage.
Or your basement.
Wherever you store your bad purchases.
And you will look to sell your first adult mountain bike on Facebook.
Four years after you bought it.
Because of the realization that it is no longer worth what you paid for it.
Because the dominant variables in your purchase - the price and its parts - were misguided.
And not where a first mountain bike’s true worth is determined.
Or any mountain bike's worth, actually.
The worth is not in its price.
Or in the quality of its parts.
Or in what a magazine says.
Or an online review.
But rather in The Community that it introduces you to.
Where people will care about you.
And support you.
Not only in biking.
But in life.
Asking about the stresses in your job.
And the challenges you face.
Inquiring how your daughter is doing.
And your wife.
Sincerely and genuinely inquiring.
At the trailhead.
Or at the top of a climb.
While looking you in the eye.
And touching your arm in understanding.
Encouraging you when your bike posture and riding pace show sadness.
Not asking questions when you are quiet on a ride.
Or fall behind the group because you are tired.
Or simply out of shape.
Because life has gotten in the way.
A Community that accepts you as you are.
But a work in progress.
#dirtchurch #circleswithmyfeet @masonracingcycles
A community that high fives you when you finally clear that obstacle that has previously made you dismount.
And laughs with you when you fall off your bike, unhurt, and covered in mud. Or snow.
And yes, a Community that gives you a beer in the parking lot after the ride.
When you do not have one of your own.
When you look to buy your first adult mountain bike, look first at the community it will introduce you to.
And then consider price. And parts. And reviews.
And buy from a Local Bike Shop.
That is where community is created.
And where it is sustained.
Then you will ride.
And nothing will rust.
Or need to be sold.
And you will not be annoyed.
You will be happy.
And cared for.