Hey, look at that, I still have a blog! Well, let's make a post.
I got a new bike for my birthday! It's a Trek 7000, which I got from a local bike store.
I initially went to a local sporting goods store, a few weeks ago. The guy I talked at was *very* quiet, and I couldn't get more than a couple of words out of him. The bike was nice enough, but more than I wanted to spend, and with him not being helpful...
I did a little bit of research online, and found that I wanted a hybrid. They're more comfortable than a regular road bike (i.e. easier on my aging butt), and have a wider range of gears (at least than my 15-yr-old 12 speed).
So I went to the shop down the street, and found the Trek model, but in a smaller size than would be right for me. They had my size in stock, but not assembled. So I went to another sporting goods store, which didn't have anything I wanted, and a day later, to Target.
Target had a Schwinn bike that was the style I was looking for, and I pulled it down off the rack and gave it a try. The price was right, but the shifters were awful and the gears rattled badly in low gear. All in all, I wasn't impressed, even at a lower price.
So I went back to the bike shop, and they had mine assembled. Tried it out, loved it, bought it. Friendly, helpful staff, and a good bike at a decent price. And I get to feel good about helping keep a specialty store running, (for what that's worth to ya).