Last night I was hanging out with Cameron, and (perhaps predictably) the topic of cycling came up. Cam suggested that I might have too many bikes. I said I had one bike for each of three discrete purposes (not counting the one that's stuck to the house still &msdash; I own two commuting-style hybrids because of that lock failure problem). We batted that ball back and forth for a while.
My ultimate conclusion was that he'll figure it out once he gets into riding (which he will, because he wants to, and once he gets the hang of it, he's going to disappear into the twisty MTB trails in Cherokee Park and will thereafter be seen occasionally stump-jumping his way down hills and shouting, "WOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" before pausing to collect a water sample for one of his classes or something).
Likewise, apparently all his friends are roadies, randonneurs, touring-folk, MTB guys, and the like, so the day will come that he finds himself owning a downhill bike, a hardtail, a touring bike, a brevet bike... You see where this is going. If your friends ride, and you want to see your friends, eventually, you will probably wind up riding.
I don't think he'll get into racing, but that's no reason not to own twenty-five bicycles :) That or else he'll be that guy who shows up to everything on a hardtail 29er and makes it look effortless. Who knows?
That being said, I think he does have a point. I am thinking about doing cyclocross this fall, just for the heck of it (where else does one get the opportunity to join a bunch of other half-frozen insane people shoulder-schlepping their bikes over fences, uphill, in the mud? Sounds like my idea of a good time, provided I don't turn an ankle), and there's no reason I can't do it on one of the machines I already have — probably Swift (the Allez is lighter, which would be nice when portaging, but I think Swift would be more amenable to rolling around in the muck). Sure, there might be some people who giggle at someone riding a flat-bar hybrid in a super-newbie cross race, but I don't honestly care what they think. For that matter, Swift is slightly more like an actual 'cross bike* than your average MTB, and people ride MTBs in entry-level 'cross races all the time, from what I've heard.
In a similar vein, excepting some new tires for Swift (his are about over), clipless pedals for Swift and the Allez (and cleats for my shoes), and various consumables (lube, brake shoes), there's not really any reason I need to keep buying bike stuff right now. Oh, wait, I do need a floor pump. Mine apparently disappeared from the basement of my apartment at some point (that's what I get for keeping it in the unlocked basement, I guess).
As such, I'm going to try to put a kibosh on non-necessary bike-accessories acquisition for now. For all that, I might even wait on the pedals and cleats -- I can put toe clips on the pedals I have, if I can't find a couple pair of used SPD pedals that suit my fancy (which isn't very fancy at all) and price range (which is 'as cheap as possible'). I will probably swap Swift's saddle out and seatpost out with the ones on the Allez (who really needs a name, but I seem to be stuck) and leave things otherwise as they are.
I may even opt to leave the purple bar tape on the Allez. It's kind of grown on me, even though it makes the bike look like it's decked out for Mardi Gras.
In other news, I didn't do much riding this morning — just a few blocks to the bus stop, then from the next bus stop to work. I am still mady in love with the way the road bike handles, though. I have to do some work at lunch time, but if I can swing it, I'm going to try to get a quick ride in, too.
*This is one of the reasons I'm planning on going with 700x35s when I replace Swift's tires (but only one)