Bike Thieves Suck

Stolen bike


I hate bike thieves. Hate is such a strong word so let me rephrase that: I REALLY hate bike thieves. 

Why? Because rid­ing bikes is in my soul. For me, rid­ing bikes is a basic human need: like water, food, shel­ter, or love. I ride to escape the 9‑to‑5. To find flow. To feel good. To live well. I ride because the trail makes me do it. I ride to con­nect with the envi­ron­ment, with oth­er peo­ple, but main­ly, I ride to con­nect to a deep­er place with­in myself. I ride because I must.

My very first moun­tain bike was stolen from me after hav­ing it just a few short weeks. It was­n’t any­thing spe­cial or expen­sive. In fact, it was a cheap, crap­py hard tail that I used as a bike mes­sen­ger in Man­hat­tan dur­ing col­lege. It was my means of sup­port­ing myself, as well as a means to rad­i­cal joy after work and on week­ends. It nev­er even touched wheels to a trail, but that’s not the point.

The point is this: Whether we rock skin­ny jeans and skin­ny tires or bag­gy shorts and full sus­pen­sion, the dif­fer­ences between us fade away when we ride. And when some­one mess­es with our bike, our nat­ur­al instinct is to mess with them in return. Because bike thieves don’t just steal your bike…they also take a piece of your soul.

Project 529 founder J Allard

So when I met the Project 529 folks at the Sea Otter Cycling Clas­sic and they asked me to join the fight, how could I say no? 

Project 529 is a group of cyclists. Like most cyclists, they’re lovers, not haters. They’re soft­ware peo­ple who love bikes. But they’re mad as hell that bike theft has gone unchecked for so long in this coun­try. So they’re wag­ing war with the weapon they know best—the Inter­net. They’ve devel­oped a killer app to help you pro­tect your bikes, and authored an impor­tant peti­tion ask­ing Craigslist and eBay to require ser­i­al num­bers on all bike sales. It’s a one-two com­bi­na­tion punch of high-tech and grass­roots com­mu­ni­ty par­tic­i­pa­tion, meant to knock out the $400 mil­lion stolen bike industry.

The Project 529 team at work

Now I’m invit­ing you to join the 529 com­mu­ni­ty and be a part of the solu­tion to stomp­ing out bike theft. It’s easy and it’s free, and if you’ve ever lost a bike to theft, or known some­one who has, it’s sort of a no-brainer. 

Reg­is­ter your bikes using the 529 Garage app—or online at—then rest a lit­tle eas­i­er, know­ing you are part of a grow­ing and active anti-theft com­mu­ni­ty. If your bike is stolen, just a quick push of the Pan­ic But­ton from your phone alerts thou­sands of fel­low rid­ers, all itch­ing to take a bike thief out of commission. 

Also, go here, now and sign the Project 529 peti­tion demand­ing Craigslist and eBay require ser­i­al num­bers on all bike list­ings. It may not stop theft completely—or instantly—but if we present a unit­ed front I believe we can force bike thieves to start look­ing for new jobs. 

At the end of the day, it does­n’t mat­ter what we ride, or how, or how far. What mat­ters is we ride…together.