The world is full of hype, most of it focused on convincing us to buy what we want, not what we need. "New & Improved" is often yesterday's news in a new package. Cheap & full of features is the name of the game, and the fact that it, whatever it is, is disposable... well, that's just a given. Someone who grew up in the 70s or 80s, buying their first large flat-screen TV 5 years ago, was probably shocked a few years later to discover that, when it stopped working, it wasn't worth fixing. Throw it away and buy a new one. That still makes no sense to me. It's no wonder our landfills our full of stuff that broke long before it had a chance to wear out. You almost wonder if the constant focus on making you think your two year old phone is an embarassment is a way to get you to ditch the old one before it has a chance to fail. Well, pretty sure you don't have to wonder. Most stuff today isn't built to last because, if the manufacturer and salespeople do their job, it doesn't have to. What you used to buy every 5 years, when it wore out, you now buy every 2 years, when it goes out of fashion.

Fortunate for you, my brother Steve and I grew up long before this focus on cheap features and disposability became the norm. We've always had high expectations of how our suppliers should stand behind their product, and how we take care of that product for our customers. We have tossed major bike lines out of our store when they couldn't meet our standards (I still remember some years back Kestrel thinking we weren't serious, telling them to come in and pick up their bikes, because despite all the buzz their bikes were falling apart right & left at the time).

So you'll find we're a bit more limited in our selection than some shops. We sell what we can stand behind, because the manufacturer stands with us. We maintain a sense of ownership of what you buy from us, long after we've taken your credit card and handed over your new bike, or helmet, or tires. Because we don't believe in disposability, we also go to more trouble than many to make sure what we offer you is appropriate for your needs, not just flashy, new or "a great deal." To us, the best "deal" is something that you get a lot of use out of. Something that you come back to replace not because it's broken, but because you wore it out.

We do recognize we've got a lot of competition out there. You can buy a lot of stuff with a few gestures on your iPhone, fast & cheap. If it doesn't quite work out, it ends up in a pile of other stuff you've bought fast & cheap over the past few years, maybe in boxes under the house, or you've been a good citizen and recycled what you could. Better than recycling is not having to get rid of it in the first place. Or, to put it in a way that makes more sense (and will help us sell more bikes), our job is to make sure, every time you walk past your bike, you want to get out and ride. Because it fits right, because it works right, and because it's a match for your dreams of what you'd like to do on a bike. Those are things we can do better than anybody on-line.

I recently bought a garden hose that claimed it's "The last hose you'll ever buy!" Gosh, I hope not. I'll be happy if the hose lasts for 10 years; I'll be happier if I last longer! Steve and I hope we're not selling you "The last bike you'll ever buy!" We hope you have so much fun cycling, that you literally wear it out. Or you get so much joy out of it that, after a few years, you pass it on to your kid or a friend and get something that's just a bit nicer... but not because it was designed to become obsolete before it could wear out.   --Mike & Steve Jacoubowsky, Chain Reaction Bicycles, doing business the same way for 36 years.