This article is from the Misc Bicycles FAQs, by various authors.
From: fish@ihlpa.ATT.COM (Bob Fishell)
Copyright (c) 1989 by Robert Fishell
[In the year 1998, one man fights the tyrrany of the automobile...]
"DROP YOUR WEAPON AND PUT YOUR HANDS UP! STAY WHERE YOU ARE!" An
amplified voice roared from somewhere beyond the blazing wreckage of the
delivery truck that had chased me in here. Instinctively, I fired a
burst from my MAC-10 in the direction of the squawking and sprinted off.
I heard bullets grazing off the pavement behind and winced at a loud
ping from the rear wheel. The bike swayed crazily as I leaned it around
the corner of a building, and I went down at the top of a ramp that led
down into a loading dock. I scrambled for the only cover available, a
narrow, filthy space between the building and a large dumpster. I heard
several cars screech to a halt as I dove into the gap. The voice
repeated, "THROW OUT YOUR WEAPON! WE HAVE YOU SURROUNDED!"
I answered with a burst of submachine gun fire. My situation was
grim, but it could have been worse. I had a defensible position, two
and a half mags of ammo, and four grenades. They wouldn't get me without
They weren't real cops, of course. There weren't any real cops
left, just security guards employed by The Twenty. Cities contracted
with them to have their goons patrol the adjoining roadways, which
supposedly saved tax dollars. It was a laughable system. It was all
these idiots could to to keep from shooting each other, and cooperation
was virtually nonexistent. It was one of the reasons I've been able to
operate for so long. But now, they had me in a spot. Perhaps it would
all end here. How did it begin?
I was born Spiro Bikopoulis on February 14, 1965 in Oak Park,
Illinois, the eldest of six children. My father was a prosperous
importer of foods and specialty items from his native Greece. I played
football and soccer in high school, then did a stint with the Marines,
where I taught hand-to-hand combat and automatic weapons at the
U. S. Naval Academy. After the Service, I picked up degrees in Physics
and Metallurgical Engineering at Caltech, where I started building bike
frames as a project, and later for the racing team I captained.
As a bike racer, I moved up rapidly, particularly after word got
around that bumping me on purpose was a mistake. I even got to the
Olympic trials in '92, but I was disqualified when a California race
official detected traces of Tylenol in a surreptitiously obtained sample
of my urine.
"I had a headache," I told him. "besides, I took it after the
"Don't serve me a plateful of irrelevant arguments, you fool!" the
official countered, "it's right here on page 387 in volume 3 of the USCF
rule book (revised 1992). You're out! Finished! Disqualified!"
I left the race official with volume 3 of his rule book stuck in a
most uncomfortable place, and quit sanctioned bike racing forever.
That was when everything started to go to hell, anyway. The
Economic Holocaust had begun, first with import restrictions, then the
repeal of anti-trust and conflict of interest laws. A group of giant
corporations known as The Twenty soon emerged, crushing all competition
and gaining a strangle-hold on the Government.
In 1992, the Congress passed all kinds of ridiculous laws designed
to curb the demand for Japanese goods. One such was the Bicycle Act,
which cut off federal highway money to any state that didn't strip
bicycles of any claim of right of way on the public roads. Shortly after
it was passed, reports of bicycle fatalities all around the Country rose
sharply. The same hotheads, rednecks and hell-raisers who used to just
harass cyclists had upped the stakes to what amounted to legalized
murder. The nation's roads became a living Hell. As The Twenty expected,
bicycle sales, and hence imports, dropped off to nothing. The nation's
highways were ruled by motor-driven hooligans who killed for sport. It
had to stop. I, Spiro Bikopoulis, alias Spike Bike, would make the roads
a living Hell for _them_.
My old Marine uniform and some forged orders got me into the Joliet
Arsenal, where I learned the place's weaknesses and established my
secret entrance. I soon had an extensive collection of military ordnance
-- and I knew how to use it. I began my campaign around rowdy
roadhouses and construction sites in my native Illinois, leaving a wake
of blood, fire, and destruction, as driver after driver, trying to turn
me into road kill, discovered too late that I wasn't defenseless. Soon
the attacks diminished, not only on me, but on the die-hard, crazy
cyclists who still braved the roads all over the Chicago area. Word was
out. Bikes weren't sitting ducks any more.
That was 5 years ago. Since then, I've been all over the country,
hitting areas at random, leaving my grisly signature on roads in every
state, and everywhere I've been, brave souls have ventured out on bikes
again, to find that drivers give them a wide berth, knowing that any one
of them could be me. Bicycles have become a symbol of the growing
Anticorporate Movement. It is the beginning of the end for The Twenty.
Unfortunately, it might also be the end for me. Crouching behind
the dumpster, my reverie is shattered by a volley of gunshots clanging
deafeningly against the heavy steel. Four of the goons are charging my
position, concentrating their fire to keep me pinned down. I pull the
pin of one of my grenades and lob it into their midst. I hear the
blast, and the gunshots stop for but a second. The hail of bullets
resumes and shadowy figures stir through the smoke. How many of them are
there? And where am I? A sign on the loading dock door confirms my
worst fears. I'm in a facility belonging to the Chrysler-Ford General
Motors Corporation, President Iacocca's own company. The delivery van I
took out hadn't chased me in here by happenstance. I'd been set up, and
I'd fallen for it! I fire wildly into the smoke, enraged as much at
myself as any of the uniformed hooligans out there. How many are there?
Bullets rained against the heavy steel of the dumpster and chipped
away the concrete of the wall next to it. I was inbetween, in a two-
by-six foot pocket of cover which would be my coffin when my ammo ran
out. I lobbed one of my three remaining grenades over the top of the
dumpster at where I thought the fire was coming from. I must have gotten
lucky, for the onslaught broke up. I took advantage of the lull to slip
a peek around the corner. Through the smoke, I counted seven bodies,
two of which were moving some, and spotted two more men diving for cover
behind parked cars. Perhaps six more of the grey-uniformed goons
received them there, crouching with pistols drawn.
My situation seemed hopeless. I'd taken out almost half of them
with just two grenades and a few rounds of ammo, but they wouldn't be
foolish enough to try a frontal assault again. They were too far away
for me to get a grenade behind their cover without exposing myself, and
I could not slip away unseen. They would wear me down, or keep me
besieged, awaiting reinforcements armed with something heavier than the
.38 revolvers that were standard CFGM Security issue.
CFGM -- The Chrysler-Ford General Motors Corporation, largest and
most powerful of The Twenty, and the most ruthless. They controlled all
transportation in America, including cars, trucks, rails, ships, barges,
and airlines. Their CEO was also President of The United States, and
lately, I'd been on his agenda. I'd been hitting bigger and bigger
stuff, like that fleet of construction trucks back home, and I was a
huge embarassment to CFGM and the Government. Last week, a group of
demonstrating Anticorporatists rode bikes around the White House, and no
one had touched them. Iacocca must have given the word to get me at all
That must have been how this bunch had trapped me. I suspected
that CFGM Security forces all over the Country had been instructed to
lure or chase bicyclists onto CFGM property, where they could be
apprehended and held for questioning. This bunch just got lucky -- or
so they must have thought. Luck had run out for a truck driver and
seven security guards when they'd tangled with me. It was the remaining
eight, watching my dumpster through the sights of their pistols, that I
had to deal with now. A thought occurred to me: they wanted me alive,
if they could get me that way, although I'm sure they'd been told to get
me any way they could. Perhaps I could parlay that into an advantage.
I tore a sleeve away from my white jersey, and waved it gingerly
past the edge of the dumpster. I heard a voice ordering the goons to
hold their fire. An instant later, the same voice came over the
"THROW OUT YOUR WEAPONS AND COME OUT WITH YOUR HANDS UP," he
intolled. Didn't he have anything else to say? He was beginning to
"Stick it, Butt-brain!" I shouted back, "Just come and get your
wounded. I'll hold my fire!" A few moments passed in silence. "Come and
get them, they're bleeding to death!" I insisted, and added, "Just leave
that bike where it is!"
My bicycle, its back wheel collapsed after a stray round had
fractured the hub, lay near the top of the ramp, among the fallen men.
There were eight more grenades, a .44 magnum, and several magazines of
ammo in the panniers, one of which had ripped open to partially display
its contents. If I could get to it, I could hold out much longer, maybe
even blast my way out. But if they got to it first, they could take me
out with my own grenades.
After a moment, two men emerged, empty-handed, from behind the row
of ugly grey Plymouths the guards drove. They made motions toward the
wounded man nearest them, but then quickly darted for my ruined bike.
One man scooped it up while the other produced a gun from behind his
back and opened fire on my position. As they retreated, the others fired
to keep me pinned down. The wounded men lay unattended on the asphalt.
The two who'd ventured out ducked back behind the cover with their
Long ago, I'd vowed I wouldn't be taken alive, and that I'd get
whoever and whatever got me. To that end, every bike I built had a
little extra weight: two pounds of plastique in the down tube, with an
electronic detonator linked by radio to a monitor strapped to my chest.
If my heart stopped, the bike became a bomb. I had flipped the arming
switch during my encounter with the delivery truck. All that remained
was to make the bike think I was dead. I drew as far back into my hole
as I could, put my head down, reached under my jersey, and ripped the
monitor away from my chest. Within seconds, a powerful blast shook the
ground, and debris rained down all around me. There was no gunfire as I
emerged from the filthy hole that had nearly been my tomb.
I surveyed the havoc I'd wreaked. The row of cars my adversaries
had used for cover lay twisted and blazing in a disorderly array around
the smoking crater the bike-bomb had made. One of the wounded men who'd
been abandoned by his comrades was still alive. He groped weakly
towards his fallen pistol, but I sprayed it with a burst from my MAC-10,
driving it away like a leaf before a garden hose. The man looked at me
with terror in his eyes. I looked at him with pity in mine. He was a
conscript, no doubt, some poor, dumb slob who couldn't get an honest
job. I holstered my weapon, removed his belt to make a tourniquet for
his leg, made him comfortable, and picked up a small object from the
ground to stick in his shirt pocket. It was the hand-tooled silver head
badge of a bicycle, twisted and charred, but still intact. It was inlaid
with the caricature of a bulldog with a steering wheel clenched in his
teeth. The name on his collar was "Spike."
"Give this to your boss," I told him softly.
Sirens approached from the south. I found an undamaged security
car and made my getaway. 30 miles away, I rendered it to scrap metal
and walked the rest of the way to the airport. I would go back to
Illinois, rest up for a few days while my road rash healed, and outfit
another bike. I had much to do.