Dear PoPville – Please Keep Your Eyes Peeled for a Stolen ‘Mama-Bike’

Photo by Stewart Eastep for

“Dear PoPville,

Sometime between Midnight and 5am this morning, two bikes were stolen from my backyard in Eckington, on the Unit Block of R St NE. I know, bikes get stolen every day in this city, and are hard to track, but the two bikes that were stolen are pretty hard to miss. I’ve attached a photo (thanks to for the great shot!!) Here are the specs:

1)Cream Xtracycle Radish long tail bike, with a Bobike front mounted baby seat/windshield, two large pannier bags, padded rear platform (note: Hoopty ‘rack’ in picture not currently attached), Obama bumper sticker on rear fender, lots of orange reflective ‘flower’ stickers, and an orange reflective mustache on the windshield.

2) White 24″ Opus Rambler with blue writing. Several “I biked to school at Yu Ying PCS today!” stickers. One black box bag on rear rack.

We are doing all the things we are supposed to do (filing a police report, setting craigslist alerts for DC, Baltimore and Philly, contacting all local bike shops, etc), but because these bikes are unique and tend to garner attention, there is a good chance that folks might see them out and about.

We are devastated. These bikes are our primary transportation when it is over 40 degrees outside. If you see them, please contact me as soon as possible! eblyttleton(at)gmail(dot)com or by phone (202-344-5389)”

37 Comment

  • I hope the bikes are found. If and when they are, make sure your daughter (the one pictured on the left) wears her helmet correctly. It should be pulled down more to cover and protect her forehead, rather than sitting so far back. (For example:
    I’ll keep an eye out for the bikes.

    • And the winner of today’s most condescending post goes to…
      Seriously, you couldn’t phase it better than “make sure your daughter…”? If someone talked to me like that, I’d take the helmet off my daughter and throw it at the person.

      • Are you the same person who objected to the “Did you notify WMATA?” question yesterday?

        • I don’t know what you’re talking about with WMATA, but I don’t think it’s appropriate to tell a complete stranger what they “should” do when it comes to their children. Mind your own fricken business.

          • By that logic, if I see some parent allowing their child to do something dangerous to others or potentially harmful to themselves, I should keep my mouth shut and ignore what I’m seeing. Did I get that right?

          • Yup, you pretty much got it spot-on!

          • You sound like a real nasty piece of work. People who are that defensive over simple statements should get help. As for the initial comment, if the helmet is designed to work a certain way, then yes the child “should” wear it that way. If you’d rather not know that your child is wearing her helmet the wrong way then I feel sorry for your child. It’s a safety issue, it’s not like you’re telling someone their child should wear a different colored shirt.

          • I find it really funny that you all get so worked up about my comment. Apparently because I mind my own business and expect others to do the same I’m a horrible person, or a “nasty piece of work.” And I don’t have children, so you don’t have to worry about their welfare or tell me how I “should” protect them. My parents must have been monsters, since I rode a bike for 14 years as a kid and never wore a helmet. Actually, every one of my friends had horrible parents, because none of us wore helmets. But in 2013 you think it’s your responsibility to tell a stranger that their kid has her helmet on wrong. Jesus.

          • It’s pretty funny that you say you “mind your own business” after butting in on somebody else’s well-meaning advice. Whether you would give that advice aside, I don’t believe you when you say you mind your own business.

          • this is like watching ping pong.

      • I didn’t think they sounded condescending at all. It sounded like they were trying to be genuinely helpful.

      • You don’t sound like you love your daughter very much.

      • It’s sad to think that your daughter is probably going to grow up to be a real piece of work just like you.

      • “If someone talked to me like that, I’d take the helmet off my daughter and throw it at the person.”

        No, you wouldn’t, so please don’t type something absurd like that just because this is the big old Anonymous Internet.

    • well this poster is right. That helmet is not on right and is not even the right shape for head protection in a bike crash. Maybe if she lived in cul de sac. but cmon people, biking is DC can be dangerous. If you are gonna put a helmet on your kid, make sure its actually going to do what you want it to do!

      • What is the right shape? I see more and more cyclists wearing helmets like these, and they seem to make more sense for in-city cycling than the tour-de-france style helmets. But I’d like to have actual information rather than my gut feeling.

  • That description is almost straight out of a Portlandia episode. The only thing missing are NPR bumper stickers.
    That said, I hope you find your bikes. My guess is that you should search around the neighborhood. I met someone abandoned the Mama Bike once they realized how unwieldy it is.

  • Sent OP an email. Keep your eyes peeled in Brightwood. Saw two bikes laying strangely in the grass by Coolidge today. Coudn’t see much other than tires sticking up. Either way, my hunch is, those bikes don’t belong there.

    • Any chance to you saw the colors of the bikes in Brightwood? Mine was stolen there about 2 months ago. No clues yet as to its whereabouts scoured craigslist for a month.

  • As a fellow long-tail aficionado, I am real bummed for you. But also slightly optimistic as your Radish will stick out like a sore thumb. Will keep my eyes peeled. Good luck.

  • that really sucks. i don’t have any helpful advice, but wanted to say your family looks adorable on your bikes! hope you find them and get back on the road together!

  • can bicycles be insured?

    • Seems like homeowner’s insurance might cover a bike if it’s stolen from your yard or garage, right? Might not be worth it if it raises your premiums though.

    • Home owners insurance covers bikes, although not at a replacement value. We claimed it when we had 2 stolen, but it wasn’t worth the claim when it was just 1. Beyond the money it just REALLY pi$$es me off that they were taken from my patio, locked up behind 5 foot fences.

  • For a bike that costs $1500, you might consider a bike lojack…
    you can track it then…

  • Ugh, this just sucks. Sorry to hear this. I live 1 block away from you on Quincy PL NE. I will keep an eye out for your family’s bike. I also enjoy riding bikeshare down R street and it’s sad people have to worry about their own bikes being stolen.

  • Stay up, fellow cyclist!

    As a random idea, has WABA ever considered a Bicycle Insurance Fund? If enough people put in money communally (let’s say $20/month), we could each get our bikes FMV in the rare instance of our bike getting stolen. Does anyone think this idea is workable? Fraud is the first concern I thought of, but that might be something that occurs so rarely that it could be priced into the monthly premium (i.e. a cost we’d all bear). Forcing claimants to fill out a police report might also lessen casual fraud (leaving it to the pro’s, who are fewer in number).

    • I know you’re just throwing out ideas, but honestly, $20/month is waaaay too high. I don’t pay that for my renters insurance, and in about a year you’d have paid for a city trasher bike.

  • i love your bikes and i hope you find them!

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