Ken Simons: web designer, editor, and archivist

The wheels fall off ...


wheel held in place with twigs Today I decided it was a good time to take copies of our magazine to the post office so they could be sent to federal MPs.

I spent a merry half-hour or so sticking on labels, and then boxed them up and put them on the office’s rarely-used hand truck. I was heading across Spadina—enjoying the warmish weather—when suddenly the hand truck lurched to the right. An entire wheel had rolled off into the gutter.

On closer inspection, it became clear that I no longer had any of the bolts which held the two halves of the right wheel together. Thinking quickly, I hunted for a couple of twigs which would be about the same diameter as the missing bolts, and jammed them through the lug-holes. Moderate success — I was able to get into the subway station, down the elevator, and onto a train.1

As I exited Ossington station, the wheel fell off again—my twiggy bolt-replacements had worked loose and no longer had enough width to hold tightly enough. I very gingerly wheeled the dolly the rest of the way to the PO, then repaired it with some fresh twigs (which you can see in the photo above, if you’ve read this far).

1 A historical note. When I was 15, I carved my own replacement brake blocks out of Western red cedar—not because I had a bicycle-related emergency, but because I was terribly stingy.