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Here’s Why That Dunkin’ Donuts Tandem Bicycle Looks So, So Wrong

Dunkin' Donuts tandem bicycle
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America may run on Dunkin’, but it’s certainly not going to bike on it.

Dunkin’ Donuts’ annual holiday swag sale sports a wide array of orange- and magenta-splashed goodies. Baseball caps, aprons, hoodies, bedspreads — even a mini-fridge — it all comes bedazzled in the doughnut chain’s bold, colorful logo.

But the big-ticket item — at least the one that caught our eye — was the $500 Dunkin’ Donuts tandem bicycle. And to be sure, part of the reason is that very same Pavlovian pull. You can’t look at the bike and not want to start chewing on the top tube.

But something else had us staring at this bike. It just looks so … wrong. Take a look — what do you see?

It reminds us of those renderings of bikes drawn from memory. They look almost rideable, just not quite — kind of like if M.C. Escher was a frame welder.

Still not seeing it? Here, this is Paul Smith’s immaculately built tandem. It costs $27,000 and is a good example of what a tandem should look like.

Paul Smith Mercian tandem

The America Rides on Dunkin’ Tandem, by contrast, costs $500. And by the looks of it, it’s worth almost every penny. For starters, where is the rear triangle? The rear seat just hangs behind the axle. And that seat tube also appears to be a rear fork? Mmm, flexy!

Let’s stay in the back for a moment — look at those cranks. They just go right into the axle. It looks like someone — Doctors Frankenstein and Moreau? — machined a unicycle onto the back of a normal bike. We’re not actually sure how this will even work. Also, what happens when those rear cranks spin? Sure looks like you’re going to smash that derailleur on the first revolution.

Honestly, it looks less like a tandem and more like a one-and-a-halfdem. Really, just picture two people actually on that thing — not even riding it, just on it. You better be friendly, because backseat Charlie is going to be all up in the driver’s business — “Mmm, your hair smells nice!”

This bike may be a Photoshop job from someone who took a crack at what they thought a tandem looked like and is not indicative of the real bicycle you’ll receive. But Dunkin’ doesn’t say anything about that in the description.

Honestly, this bike is exactly what you’d expect from a doughnut shop: So bad for you, and yet somehow so good at the same time.

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