Recent experience on Craigslist has taught me to be very skeptical about deals that seem too good to be true. I've lost count of the number of times I've come across ads with photos of pristine-looking vintage bikes and prices that are unbelievably low, only to find it's a bizarre scam or someone just out to waste everyone's time.
That must have been why I didn't jump in my car and speed to Roseville the moment I saw an ad for a 70's-era Columbia three-speed for... wait for it... $25.
The photos showed a bike that looked new. I emailed the seller, fully expecting no response or one that would indicate tomfoolery. Instead, I got a phone numbrer and an invitation to come see the bike. It was a 30-minute drive, however, and I kept thinking of how furious I'd be to get all the way there and learn no such people/place/bike existed.
Finally, I decided I had to try. I called the number and was told that someone was on their way to see it. The seller seemed to be an older gentleman. The bike was as good as gone ($25!), but The Kid and I got in the car and gave it a try anyway. When we were five minutes from our destination, the seller called to say the bike was sold...
I need another bike like I need a hole in the head, but man, it would have been fun to buy a mint-condition three-speed for $25.