I usually ride my bike to school and when I come home, I park the bike unlocked in the street accessible car port. The key thing: I don’t lock my bike.
This morning I had a meeting with a professor and I left kind of early. I noticed my roommates bike, which he parks next to mine, was gone. This was noticed because he usually leaves the house late in the morning and I thought it weird that he was gone early on a Friday.
Anyway, I got back a couple hours later and the bike was still missing. Thinking the roommate must still be out, I was surprised to see him in the house.
“Oh, no! His bike was stolen.” Were the first thoughts that come to mind. When I lived in the Bay Area, I had my bike stolen in front of my house and I looking back on it now I remember being particularly and surprisingly angry about the incident. So, the idea that his bike was stolen raised some old hackles in me.
After checking with him, though, I discovered that, no, his bike hadn’t been stolen. It was raining yesterday and he he left is bike at school and took the bus home.
Remember how I don’t lock my bike when I park it in front of my house? Well, I had another appointment at school later in the afternoon (my students had a review session for their up-coming final). After, finishing there and returning by bike, I parked it in front of the house and then I locked it.
Why the hell did I lock my bike this afternoon? I had no new information about the trust-worthiness of my neighbors. I didn’t discover the odds of getting one’s bike stolen were higher than expected. The relevant facts did not change, so why did my behavior?
I guess I just did something funny.