The Blue Bikeshare Blues: A Lesson in Going Back to Move Forward

Once upon a time in San Francisco, Rowan “Brad” Galvin spotted the ideal transportation for a man of his eco-conscious, tech-savvy inclinations — a stylish blue bikeshare, courtesy of Lyft. “Today,” he thought, “is the day I marry convenience and sustainability.”

The initial ride was magnificent. Wind in his hair, wheels humming on the asphalt, Brad navigated through the bustling streets to his favored café for a deep dive into data analytics. This is what modern living should be like, he believed.

When he reached his destination, he maneuvered the bike into its dock and followed the standard locking procedure, rotating the wheel until he heard the lock click into place. But something was amiss. His phone pinged, notifying him of a $25 charge for “incorrect locking.”

“Say what now?” Brad muttered, double-checking the lock. He even jiggled the wheel to be sure. It felt secure.

Another attempt, another ping, another $25 gone. His analytical mind went into hyperdrive. Was the locking mechanism flawed? Were the sensors improperly calibrated? Or was the universe, in its own quirky way, telling him to take a hike — literally?

Exasperated, Brad fired off a meticulously detailed complaint to Lyft’s customer service. Their response? “Thank you for your patience. We’re looking into it.” But patience was one resource Brad no longer wished to allocate to this endeavor.

After the fifth erroneous charge, he took the nuclear option — canceling his entire Lyft account. “Adios, tech nuisances,” he said, tapping “Confirm” with a flourish. The app seemed to quiver before disappearing from his phone.

With Uber already a relic of his past, Brad smiled as he hailed a traditional yellow taxi the next day. “Where to?” the driver asked.

“Forward,” Brad replied, “by way of the past.”

As the taxi rolled away, he mused on the irony. In a world addicted to the next big thing, sometimes the most advanced move was a step backward. And so he rode, content in the knowledge that this particular journey would have no surprise $25 fees.

The End.