Brooklyn Heights blogger Peter Kaufman (you may remember him for his crusade against the Henry Street bike lane-blocking church parishioners) decided to conduct a little social experiment over the weekend by putting a bike out on the street without locks and seeing how long it took to disappear. But Kaufman, a lifelong New Yorker who once lost a 10-speed to thieves when he lived in Forest Hills, was shocked to find the bike right where he left it more than 30 hours after kissing it goodbye.
This type of bike, a PK Vertical mountain bike, is selling on Craigslist for $100. Kaufman's girlfriend's sister didn't want hers anymore, so on Saturday afternoon he put it out on Pierrepont Street "with no chain, no Kryptonite, no nothing." There was also no note informing passersby that it was free, and it seems everyone was on their best behavior Saturday. Finally, while walking his dog at 6 a.m. this morning, Kaufman saw the bike was finally gone. "I was just about to get in touch with Ripley’s and Leonard Nimoy’s people, too," says Kaufman. "A day-and-a-half without a lock. Come on people, I’m not running a hotel here!"
In previous social cyclist experiments, a time-lapse video showed how long it took for a fully loaded bike—with basket, water bottle, bells, lights, etc.—to get stripped clean while locked in the same spot on a busy street in SoHo. And, while we're on the subject, if you're looking to unburden yourself of a bicycle, the worthy non-profit group Recycle-A-Bicycle would be happy to take it off your hands.