The excitement starting my job at Biktrix was not only shared by me, but by my closer circle of friends. One of them, **Lisa Whyte, was excited to hear about my new position! She admitted that she knew one person at her old work who had an electric bike, who loved it, but it served as a particularly effective solution to an... embarrassing problem.
Of course, being human, and a writer, and being nosy in general, I had to pry. When I heard it, I had to ask if I could use it. I got her permission to use the story, because it is one that needs to be told.
Here is her story, revised only for grammar and sentence structure for easier readability, and names changed for the sake of anonymity.
“I came into work thinking things were going to be okay today. I was not behind on my work, I had enough sleep, I was fifteen minutes early, and a coworker brought donuts for everyone, so I was far happier than I was the last few days. It had a feeling it was going to turn out to be a great day.
“I was dead wrong.
“Our new unpaid intern, **Gerry, came into work five minutes late, walking his regular 10 speed bike with him, wearing his helmet, and sweating hard, as if he was being interrogated for horrendous crimes by hard government agents. He scurried with his bike past my desk.
“It hit me.
“The stink. A lingering stale putrid scent that assaulted my nostrils with oily, musty, irrefutably rancid body odor, chose to stay at my cubicle well after Gerry walked past me. It stayed, floating under my nostrils, as I tried to breathe. I breathed in, with my mouth, to try to give my nose a break. Big mistake. As soon as I opened my mouth, I accidentally... tasted it. A huge blast of sweaty, oily hair, dead skin, and a stink powerful enough to strip the rust off my crummy car, hit my mouth. It was as if I had licked Gerry’s armpit at the source.
“‘So, this is how I die,’ I muttered to myself, praying for the end.
“I somehow made it past the day, but I knew that the scent of Gerry, the garbage truck with legs and a mouth, destroyed my day. I thought maybe it would be a one-time thing. Someone maybe told Gerry. Someone hopefully had to be the person to stand up and be the jerk-face to tell him that his presence was offensive to all living things when he didn’t take a shower. Maybe it was just a one-off horrible nightmare we all could forget.
“The next day, it was the same thing. Five minutes late, same clothes, same helmet, same bike, same smell. The day after that, the same thing happened. By the end of the week I was considering either moving to a different department, or quitting. It wasn’t just me, either. **Linda, from two cubicles over, got in deep trouble when the company found “bulk scented candles” on her browser search history during work hours. The only thing that saved her was when she confessed that it was an attempt at stopping Gerry’s body odor.
“Not even the boss was mentioning it to him. Nobody was mentioning it to him. I guess that meant I had to be the one to step up. Bout actually speaking to him about it would’ve been rough, so I chose to go the route of the jerk-face. I grabbed a clothespin out of my desk for my nose, and found him at the end of the day.
“I didn’t have to say anything to him. Gerry saw the clothespin on my nose, and that was enough.
“‘I know! Jeez, I’m sorry!’
“Yup. I was the jerk-face of the week.
“The weekend was stench-free. I cleaned my house, did my laundry, gave my dog a bath, gave blood, and spent time with plenty of people who understand the importance of soap. But then, Sunday night rolled around, and I dreaded going to work.
“The next morning, I came into work 10 minutes early, to see Gerry in proper work clothes... clean. Not sweating. My prayers were answered! But I still felt like a jerk-face. So, I decided to talk to him before work started.
“That’s okay,” Gerry exclaimed, raising his hand, as if to stop me. “I didn’t wanna smell me, either. I switched bikes!”
“‘Oh?’ Bike switching? I was expecting anti-perspirant.
“I switched to an electric bicycle. I get to work on time, while not needing to really exert myself, so I don’t arrive at work smelling like death.”
“We shared a laugh - something I never really thought I would be doing with him.
“His e-bike worked wonders for him - it was cool seeing someone ‘plug their bike in’ at work. It felt futuristic to me. Made me wanna get one! He was less stressed, and his work improved, so much so that he took over Linda’s job when she retired later that year. Even in the fall and winter months, he still used the e-bike, and even with all those layers, there was still no problem. We’re good friend to this day.
“I still call him ‘Stinky’ every once in a while, though.”
Thank you, Lisa, for the great story. It made me laugh, but it points to an off-the-wall, interesting amenity that an electric bike has over a regular bike. You can use the pedal assist to get a more controlled workout, or choose to not pedal at all, and prevent sweatfests at work, increase productivity, and improve inter-personal relationships with co-workers.
**a reminder - names have been changed for the sake of staying anonymous.
About Robert Bryn Mann:
Robert Bryn Mann is a Customer Content Specialist at Biktrix. A professional writer, he is happy to be working with a company that shares his passion for greener transportation options. When he is not working with Roshan Thomas, he is writing stand-up material, and scripts for film and TV.