Econ Project

Econ Project - Perry Calidius Blazian Economics Period One...

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Perry Calidius Blazian Economics, Period One Name(s): The Chain Gang, Gary (owner) Description: The Chain Gang Bike Shop, and its owner, Gary, have been in business (mostly) since 1974. The shop is situated in such a fashion as to serve two major functions. First, a bike shop with a wide variety of clothing, accessories, tools and the like, in addition to an extensive selection of all types of bicycles, i.e. mountain, road, cruiser, commuter, and comfort bikes. Secondly, the shop offers a team of efficient and knowledgeable mechanics, or wrenches, as is the popular term in cycling, who are able to assemble, troubleshoot, repair, and adjust any type of bicycle that needs their expertise. The ambiance of the shop is about what you would both expect and want from a bike shop downtown. There is generally loudish rock‘n’roll music playing in the mechanics’ section. You are greeted with gregarious welcome from someone on staff and asked if you need any help. If you answer is no, you’re free to wonder the store without harassment. You answer yes, and you get all the help you can ask for, sometimes from more than one person, unless they’re swamped with people or have a heavy work load. The store caries mid- and higher range equipment and the employees, for the most part, know their way around the merchandise. Gary told Sean and me that the industry is currently in a stable or slight growth stage, which growth he attributed to the growing numbers of Baby Boomers, who are in search of an
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Perry Calidius Blazian Economics, Period One inexpensive and entertaining way of staying fit, and buying a comfort cruiser or something of that nature. He said that the customers he encounters range from young adults buying their first bike on their own, to parents buying their kids their first bikes, to middle-aged and older people upgrading to keep up with a sport they’ve loved for years. When asked about gender, he said that there is a substantial number more men than women visiting his store, but, he said, the female population is by no means absent from the cycling world. When Gary started off in the bike shop business, most “higher tech” bikes only had three gears, no suspension systems, and clincher brakes. Compared with the norm today of twenty-four to twenty-seven gears, sophisticated and adjustable shocks in front and back, and a wide variety of brakes from center- and side-pull to hydraulic brakes, the expertise needed back in the seventies pales in comparison. He started off in a small, one room store, working off a loan, and almost went bankrupt four different times the first few years. He said that to do today what he did in ’74 would be impossible. The game has changed, and bicycle shops are finally, he said, becoming more substantial and professional in nature. Gary thinks that this is good for the overall effect on the industry as well as the consumer, but I have to admit there is something I
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Econ Project - Perry Calidius Blazian Economics Period One...

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