The Thrill is proud to feature personal narratives courtesy of Project Open Voices, a coalition of students providing a platform for open dialogue on campus. Today’s essay is titled “The Bicycle” and was authored anonymously. If you want to share your story, email firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to remain anonymous, you can submit by signing into a second email account: email@example.com (password: kenyoncollege).
I was finally able to buy a bicycle the summer before my sophomore year at Kenyon. It was nothing particularly special: a Schwinn that I had researched and bought at Target. However, I loved that bike. We spent hours on the Gap trail and raced to class every morning. During Sendoff my bike disappeared. A friend later found it in the woods behind Mather. It had been pounded into the ground during the festivities. The lock did not stand a chance. I tried to have the bike fixed, but after several days I was told that the frame was damaged beyond repair. I filed a police report with Campus Safety, but there had been multiple vandalisms during Sendoff. I had no idea who had stolen my bike. I was heartbroken. My friends did not understand how much hard work went into getting that bike. I could not afford to replace it. I was angry with Kenyon students for a very long time. I could not understand how students could get drunk, destroy my property, and think nothing of it. Hours and hours of minimum-wage labor, saving, and planning went into buying my bike. Not all of the students at Kenyon have disposable income. If our property is damaged or stolen, we cannot simply go out and replace it.