Tricycle Symbolism

March 21, 2009

Do two make a trend? I’ve now seen lone tricycles perpetually locked to sidewalk bike racks outside two Northeast Portland restaurants. They’re obviously in place for symbolic value, but symbolizing what?

One has been parked outside Tin Shed for at least a few years. A couple nights ago, a newer trike grabbed my attention. It’s outside Belly, which opened in July to good reviews but isn’t getting the business it deserves.

The locks look heavier and more expensive than what they’re protecting. So a do-anything-to-protect-your-children message is conceivable. Or are the trikes a prominent Portland way of communicating these are kid-friendly restaurants?

Lurking beyond my view, I think, is a deeper or ironic meaning.