St. Valentines Day Manicure
Six Ways to Make Yourself Over as a Bike Seduction Machine

Cupid Strikes Again! First: make sure you're single. Ask yourself: Have I shaved or fixed my makeup recently? Am I really worried about how smelly my commute makes me? If yes, you are probably single. Am I considering going to SFBC Volunteer Night just to flirt? You are definitely single.

And now to the tips. One of these proven strategies of vehicular seduction is bound to fit your style:

The "mechanic" - Carry tools at all times and look for drakes or damsels in distress. A post-repair drink might be in order, so bring gloves (to keep your nails clean!).

The "Tiny Tim" - The mechanic's converse. Self-inflict a flat tire or dropped chain, then decline assistance until a sufficiently comely assistant comes along. Don't overdo it. Remember, distressed, not needy.

The "consumer" - A simple "nice Colnago," "is that carbon fiber?" or "where'd you get those cool tassels?" goes a long way.

The "tourist" - Puzzle over a map at a likely intersection or gathering place. Flatter someone's sense of mastery by asking him or her questions. Show your charming insouciance by abandoning your original plan and tagging along with your host.

The "activist" (or Michael's sly SFBC recruitment scheme) - Invite a likely candidate to a Coalition event. Social responsibility is sexyŃand free pizza is a cheap date.

The "klutz" - A last-ditch approach, not recommended for the meek. Pick a strategic spot near your intended, throw yourself over the handlebars, and hope his/her Florence Nightingale instincts kick in. If you find yourself charming an emergency room nurse, you've gone too far.

(Next month: Dealing with rejection by riding your bike.)

By Michael Tanner