Dear friends and family of Spun,
Starting off 2020 with Dominic’s ruptured disc injury and now the pandemic, let’s just say 2020 is like some kind of nightmare Stephen King wrote and we are all living the screenplay. Am I right?? I have had so much on my mind and no one to tell it to, so I decided to write up a blog post like I did in the old days.
The last four and a half months we have acclimated to a new normal here at Spun. Shortened hours, doors locked, window gates stay shut, short and sweet transactions and more stress than we could ever imagine. Our industry is seeing a boom like we have never seen in the history of bicycle shops. We have been trying to stay ahead of the game by ordering mass repair parts early on so we could continue to fix bikes. Now the supply chain is running dry and I am competing with some big shops around the country to grab up repair parts when they come in. I spend a lot of time staring at the computer looking at different suppliers, talking to reps on the phone and grabbing as much product as I can when I find it. Our shop is packed wall to wall with repair bikes. We have 4 different stacks of work orders: 1. Quick fixes. 2. Ready and waiting. 3. Waiting on parts. 4. Long term projects.
Pic cred Phil Armstrong Cincinnati Refined
One of the hardest parts about being an essential biz during a pandemic, at least for our shop, is the way we have to conduct biz now. Pre-Covid we had customers come in to buy stuff, shoot the shit, and we knew about your Mom’s surgery or your kid’s college grades. Now I stare at you with a mask on, there is fear and stress in my eyes and you can see it, you can hear it in my voice as I get your name and number and tag your bike and send you on your way. For Dominic, god love him, it’s even harder. He is missing his customers who have become friends. He misses that handshake and a hug when you leave. Some days he stomps his feet and says “I DO NOT LIKE DOING BUSINESS THIS WAY!!” and I have to remind him that this is for the safety of us. And for you.
Speaking of us, we have been isolated together since early March. We go to the shop and we go home. We don’t have anyone else in our circle since we are operating a biz and in contact with lots of people. We don’t know if/when we will get sick and we certainly don’t want to get anyone else sick. My friend’s father is currently intubated in a hospital fighting for his life. Another dear friend of the shop is sick and awaiting results but his doc is pretty sure he has it (“You do not want this sickness, it’s awful.”) and another customer’s mom was also in the hospital, he is currently trying to keep 4 kids bikes running so they have something to do. That is just a few of the people we know who have been affected by Covid.
Pic cred: Phil Armstrong Cincinnati Refined
One thing is for sure. The bicycle has been a saving grace for so many during this pandemic. It breaks my heart to tell you that I can’t get my hands on any new bikes at the moment due to a bike shortage. It also breaks my heart when I tell you I can’t get you that specific tire in that specific color in that specific size. We both hate it.
For the rest of 2020 our goal is to fix and repair as many bikes as we can. Our goal is to get your bike back to you in the time frame we gave you. While new bike sales would be great, most of our brands have pre-sold their 2021 bikes to the shops that have the space (and money) to carry that kind of inventory.
We take this virus seriously. We are not fucking around. Masks are required to drop bikes off or pick up curbside sales. I have one for you if you forget yours. We may even be overly paranoid about staying safe but that’s ok. I have seen too many other local biz owners have to close or reduce operations because of sickness in the workplace.
I do not foresee us going back to “normal life” or pre-Covid life anytime soon. There is nothing normal about what is happening in our country and around the world. I worry so much about the future and the kids and school and my mom and Dominic’s family. I can only control what we do now, which is fix bikes, sanatize the shit out of them, and give them back to you functioning perfectly.
All our love,
Judi and Dominic
Masks by Helltown Workshop