NCERT Class 7 English Honeycomb Book Chapter 7 A Bicycle in Good Repair Summary, Explanation, Question Answer
A Bicycle in Good Repair – NCERT Class 7 English Honeycomb book Lesson 7 -Detailed explanation of the lesson along with the meanings of difficult words. Also, the explanation is followed by a Summary of the lesson. All the exercises and Questions and Answers given at the back of the lesson have been covered. Take Free Online MCQs Test for Class 7Click Here
Class 7 English (Honeycomb book) Chapter 9 A Bicycle in Good Repair
|A Bicycle in Good Repair Introduction||A Bicycle in Good Repair Video Explanation|
|A Bicycle in Good Repair Summary||A Bicycle in Good Repair Explanation|
|A Bicycle in Good Repair Question Answers|
A Bicycle in Good Repair Introduction
This is a humorous story. The author jokes with his companion when he says that the bicycle creates a problem. However, the companion takes him seriously and breaks open the cycle in order to set it right.
A man whom the author knew had proposed one evening that they should go bicycling the following day. The author agreed to this. He got up early in the morning which took a lot of effort but he was pleased by it. He was waiting for the man with his bicycle while he enjoyed the lovely day. The man came and asked the author about the working of the bicycle. Then, he took hold of the bicycle and shook it violently. He then concluded, saying that the bicycle needed to be repaired. Why was it so? Did the author like this?
A Bicycle in Good Repair Class 7 Video Explanation
A Bicycle in Good Repair Summary
A man whom the author knew had proposed one evening that they should go bicycling the following day. The author agreed to this. He got up early in the morning which took a lot of effort. However, he was pleased to see that he was making an effort for a change. The author was waiting for the man who was late but the author was enjoying the lovely day so he didn’t mind. When the man came, he complimented the bicycle which the author had beside him. Then, the man asked how it ran. The author said that the bicycle worked like all the other bicycles. He added that it was easy to handle the bicycle in the morning but it would become a bit stiff after lunch. The man then grabbed the bicycle and began shaking it violently, which the author didn’t like. The author felt that there was no need to shake the bicycle and also that it hadn’t done anything to anyone that it was being mishandled. Moreover, the only person who had the right to shake the bicycle violently was the author as he was the owner. The man then said that the front wheel wobbled. The author retorted, saying that the front wheel doesn’t unless you make it wobble. However, the man said that it was dangerous to ride a bicycle whose front wheel wobbled. Then, he asked for a hammer. The author went to his tool shed to see if he could get something which would help the man. When the author came back, he found the man sitting on the ground with the front wheel between his legs. The remaining part of the bicycle was lying on the gravel path beside him. The man said that the bearings on the wheel appeared to be all wrong. The author told him not to trouble himself about this matter and then advised him to put the bicycle back and start their journey. However, the man said that they should solve the matter now that it was out. Before the author could stop him from going any further, he unscrewed something somewhere, which resulted in all the balls rolling out. The man was excited about this new situation and kept on shouting at the author, telling him to pick all the pieces from the ground. They grovelled around for half an hour, and found sixteen. The man then said that he hoped they had got them all, because, if not, it would make a serious difference to the machine. The author however, didn’t give him all the balls he had found. He admitted when he was writing the story that it was not a sensible thing to do. The man then started examining the chain for which he disassembled the gear-case. The author tried to dissuade him by telling him that a friend had once told him solemnly that if anything goes wrong with someone’s gear-case, the person should sell the machine and buy a new one as it comes cheaper. But the man said that only people who didn’t understand anything about machines talk like that. According to the man, nothing was easier than taking off the gear-case. This turned out to be true when the gear-case was lying in two parts on the path while the man grovelled around for screws. The man thought the disappearance of screws to be a complete mystery. A thought of common sense kept on repeating in his head and that was to stop the man before he would do anymore mischief. He had the right to defend his property and that he should grab the man by the scruffs of his neck and kick him out of the gate. However, the author said that he was weak at hurting people’s feelings so he let him continue. He gave up looking for the rest of the screws. He said screws had a knack of turning up when you least expected them. He then started tightening the chain. Sometimes he would tighten the chain too much, sometimes it would become twice as loose as before. Then he said we had better think about getting the front wheel back into its place again. The author held the fork open, while the man tried to fix the wheel. They kept on trying till ten minutes passed and they switched places. When it was finally into position, the man burst out laughing. When the author asked him why he was laughing, the man said he was an ass as he had forgotten the balls. That was the first thing he said that made the author respect him. The author then looked for his hat, which was lying topsy-turvy in the middle of the path. The man was very cheerful and optimistic. He said that they should try their best to put it back and then trust God to give them good results. They were able to find eleven. They fixed six on one side and five on the other, and half an hour later the wheel was in its place again. However, the front wheel wobbled more than ever and even a child would have noticed it now. The man didn’t mind it and said that the author would have to make do with it for now. The author took a strategic turn and complimented the man’s hard work, cheery confidence and optimistic nature. The man was so flustered that he was encouraged to refix the gear-case. He parked the bicycle against the house, and worked from the off side. Then he stood it against a tree, and worked from the on side. Then the author held it for him, while he lay on the ground with his head between the wheels, and worked at it from below, and dropped oil upon himself. Then he took it away from the author, and doubled himself across it till he lost his balance and slid over onto his head. When this happened he lost his temper and began bullying the bicycle. The bicycle showed spirit by fighting the man. However, the man was ultimately able to overcome the bicycle. He was standing, flushed with victory, with the bicycle held firmly between his legs. But his victory was short-lived. By a sudden and quick movement, the bicycle had freed itself from the man’s clutches. It turned upon and hit him sharply over the head with one of its handles. It was quarter to one. The man was dirty and dishevelled, cut and bleeding. He said that that would do for now. The bicycle looked as though it had received enough punishment. The author took the man to the back kitchen where the man cleaned himself as far as he could, and then he left for home.
A Bicycle in Good Repair Explanation
A man I knew proposed one evening we should go for a long bicycle ride together on the following day, and I agreed. I got up early, for me; I made an effort, and was pleased with myself. He came half an hour late; I was waiting for him in the garden. It was a lovely day. He said, “That’s a good-looking machine of yours. How does it run?”
The author tells us that there was a man he knew who suggested that they both should go on a long bicycle ride together the next day. The author agreed to this suggestion and woke up early on the following morning. He made an effort at getting up early, which indicates that the author was not an early riser. He was pleased with himself. The author was waiting for the man in the garden who was half an hour late. However, the author didn’t mind as he was getting to enjoy the lovely day. When the man arrived, he complimented the bicycle and asked how it worked.
“Oh, like most of them!” I answered; “easily enough in the morning; goes a little stiffly after lunch.”
He caught hold of it by the front wheel and the fork, and shook it violently.
stiffly: in a way that is firm and difficult to bend or move.
fork: each of a pair of supports in which a bicycle or motorcycle wheel revolves.
The author answered his question by saying that the bicycle ran just like all the other bicycles. However, there was one exception. The bicycle was very easy to handle in the morning but it became difficult to move the bicycle after lunch.
The man then got hold of the bicycle by the front wheel and the fork, and shook it violently.
I said, “Don’t do that; you’ll hurt it.”
I did not see why he should shake it; it had not done anything to him. Besides, if it wanted shaking, I was the proper person to shake it. I felt much as I should have had he started whacking my dog.
whacking: beating; striking
When the man shook the bicycle violently, the author told the man not to do that as the bicycle would get hurt. This indicates that the author didn’t approve of the man’s actions.
The author now tells us exactly why he didn’t like the man’s rude behaviour towards his bicycle. He said that he didn’t see or understand the reason the man was shaking the bicycle. Then, he said that if the bicycle required shaking, he, who was the owner, had the right to shake it. He then siad that he felt possessive of his belonging and that the man had no right to touch his belonging.
He said, “This front wheel wobbles.”
I said, “It doesn’t if you don’t wobble it.” It didn’t wobble, as a matter of fact—nothing worth calling a wobble.
wobble: move unsteadily from side to side
After shaking the bicycle, the man said that the front wheel of the bicycle wobbled.
However, the author said that if we wouldn’t shake the bicycle, the front wheel wouldn’t wobble. The author further tells us that the front wheel really didn’t wobble.
He said, “This is dangerous; have you got a hammer?” I ought to have been firm, but I thought that perhaps he really did know something about the business. I went to the tool shed to see what I could find. When I came back he was sitting on the ground with the front wheel between his legs. He was playing with it, twiddling it round between his fingers; the remnant of the machine was lying on the gravel path beside him.
remnant: remaining parts
gravel: a loose aggregation of small water-worn or pounded stones
The man didn’t pay much attention to what the author said. Instead, he said that it was dangerous to ride the bicycle and asked for a hammer. The author felt like he should be firm with him and stop him from working on the bicycle. But then the author thought that maybe the man did know something about the bicycle that he didn’t know. With this reason, he went to the tool shed to see what he could find. When he had come back with the necessary tools, he saw that the man was sitting on the ground with the front wheel positioned between the man’s legs. He was playing with the wheel while turning it round and round between his fingers. The remaining part of the machine was lying on the gravel path beside the man.
He said, “It looks to me as if the bearings were all wrong.”
I said, “Don’t you trouble about it any more; you will make yourself tired. Let us put it back and get off.”
As the man inspected the machine, he said that all the ball-bearings looked like they had been put together in a wrong way.
The author advised him not to worry too much about it anymore as it would make him tired. He asked him to put the bicycle back together and go for the long ride.
He said, “We may as well see what is the matter with it, now it is out.” He talked as though it had dropped out by accident.
Before I could stop him he had unscrewed something somewhere, and out rolled all over the path some dozen or so little balls.
The man said that since the bicycle was now fully apart, they might as well see what was its problem. The author comments that he was talking as though he hadn’t opened the bicycle himself and that the bicycle had dropped by accident.
Before the author could stop him from doing any further work, the man unscrewed something somewhere and all ball-bearings present in that part rolled out on the path.
“Catch ‘em!” he shouted; “catch ‘em! We mustn’t lose any of them.” He was quite excited about them.
We grovelled round for half an hour, and found sixteen. He said he hoped we had got them all, because, if not, it would make a serious difference to the machine. I put them for safety in my hat. It was not a sensible thing to do, I admit.
grovelled: crawled on the ground
The man shouted to the author telling him to catch all the ball-bearings and that they must not lose even a single one of them. The author comments that the man was quite excited about the newly arrised situation.
The author and the man, both grovelled around on the ground for half an hour. They had found sixteen of the rolled out ball-bearings. The man said that he hoped that they had got them all. If they hadn’t, then it would make a serious difference to the machine. The author put the ones he had found in his hat for safety. He admits while writing this story it was not a sensible thing to do.
He then said that while he was about it he would see to the chain for me, and at once began taking off the gear-case. I did try to dissuade him from that. I told him what an experienced friend of mine once said to me solemnly: “If anything goes wrong with your gear-case, sell the machine and buy a new one; it comes cheaper.”
see to the chain: check or examine the chain
solemnly: with deep sincerity
The man then said that while he was locating the problem, he would examine the chain for the author. Without any further ado, he began taking off the gear-case. The author kept on dissuading him from opening the gear-case. He told the man that he had an experienced friend who had once told him solemnly that if anything would go wrong with one’s gear-case, the person should sell the machine and buy a new one because that is much cheaper than getting the gear-case repaired.
He said, “People talk like that who understand nothing about machines. Nothing is easier than taking off a gear-case.”
I had to confess he was right. In less than five minutes he had the gear-case in two pieces, lying on the path, and was groveling for screws. He said it was always a mystery to him the way screws disappeared.
When the man heard this, he said that only people who understood nothing about the machines talked like that. He added that nothing was easier than taking off a gear-case.
The author confessed that the man was right. In less than five minutes, the man had taken the gear-case apart and the gear-case ws lying in two pieces on the gravel path. Meanwhile, the man was grovelling for screws. The man said that the disappearance of the screws always seemed like a mystery to him.
Common sense continued to whisper to me: ‘Stop him, before he does any more mischief. You have a right to protect your own property from the ravages of a lunatic. Take him by the scruff of the neck, and kick him out of the gate!’
But I am weak when it comes to hurting other people’s feelings, and I let him muddle on.
lunatic: mad person
scruff: back of the neck
muddle: mix up things
A whisper which was full of common sense kept on repeating itself in the author’s head. Common sense kept on telling him to stop the man before his mischievous nature destroyed something else. The author had the right to protect his property from the ravages of a mad man. Common sense advised him to grab hold of the man by the scruff of his neck and kick him out of the gate.
However, the author happened to be weak when it came to hurting other’s feelings, and so, he let the man continue muddling things up.
He gave up looking for the rest of the screws. He said screws had a knack of turning up when you least expected them, and that now he would see to the chain. He tightened it till it would not move; next he loosened it until it was twice as loose as it was before. Then he said we had better think about getting the front wheel back into its place again.
knack: special skill, talent
Turning up: coming into view
see to: examine
The man gave up looking for the rest of the screws because he believed that the screws had a mysterious and special talent of coming into view when it was least expected. Hence, he meant that the screws would turn up when he would least expect them to do so. Then, he said that meanwhile, he would examine the chain of the bicycle. The man first tightened the chain to such an extent that the chain would not move at all. Then, he loosened the chain so much that it was twice as loose as it had been before. After that, the man said that they should now think about getting the front wheel back onto the bicycle.
I held the fork open, and he worried with the wheel. At the end of ten minutes I suggested he should hold the fork, and that I should handle the wheel; and we changed places.
At length we did get the thing into position; and the moment it was in position he burst out laughing.
The author held the fork of the bicycle, where the wheel was to be placed, open for the man. The man tried to fix the wheel but he couldn’t. The author then suggested that the man should hold the fork and he should fix the wheel. The man agreed to this and they switched places.
When they finally fixed the wheel, the man burst out laughing.
I said, “What’s the joke?”
He said, “Well, I am an ass!”
It was the first thing he had said that made me respect him. I asked him what had led him to the discovery.
When the man laughed, the author asked what the joke was. Hence, the author thought that the reason why the man was laughing was because of a joke.
The man however said that he was an idiot and that was the thing which made him burst out with laughter.
The author says that that was the first thing he had said which made the author respect him. Not many people would humiliate themselves by calling themselves an ass. Hence, the author appreciated the man’s honesty and modesty. Then, the author asked the man why he was calling himself an ass. The author hence wanted to know what was the thing which led him to that humiliating discovery.
He said, “We’ve forgotten the balls!”
I looked for my hat; it was lying topsy-turvy in the middle of the path.
He was of a cheerful disposition. He said, “Well, we must put back all we can find, and trust to providence.”
topsy-turvy: upside down
providence: here, God
The man answered his question by telling him that they had forgotten the ball-bearings of the bicycle.
The author searched for his hat. In that hat, he had stored some of the balls he had found.
Even though the man had forgotten the balls, he was of a cheerful disposition. He said that they should put the bicycle back to how it was before and they should do their best in doing so. The result should be left up to God and they should trust in the supreme authority.
We found eleven. We fixed six on one side and five on the other, and half an hour later the wheel was in its place again. It need hardly be added that it really did wobble now; a child might have noticed it. He said it would do for the present.
They found eleven balls. They fixed six of those eleven balls on one side and the remaining balls, which were five in number on the other side. Half an hour later, the wheel was finally in its place again. However, the only problem was that the wheel actually wobbled and even a child could have noticed it. So, instead of repairing the bicycle, the bicycle had gotten more damaged. But the man was probably tired because he told the author that they should leave it as it was for that particular day.
I said, “Watching you do this is of real use to me. It is not only your skill that fascinates me, it is your cheery confidence in yourself, your inexplicable hopefulness, that does me good.”
fascinates: attracts, makes someone interested
inexplicable: that can’t be explained; mysterious
The author told the man that watching him repair the bicycle was very useful to him. It was not only his skill that fascinated him, but his cheery confidence and optimistic nature seemed so mysterious that he would get drawn towards him automatically.
Thus encouraged, he set to work to refix the gear-case. He stood the bicycle against the house, and worked from the off side. Then he stood it against a tree, and worked from the on side. Then I held it for him, while he lay on the ground with his head between the wheels, and worked at it from below, and dropped oil upon himself. Then he took it away from me, and doubled himself across it till he lost his balance and slid over on to his head.
off/on side: (in cricket) off side is that side of the field which the batsman is facing to receive the ball; on side is the opposite of that
The author’s compliment encouraged the man to refix the gear-case. He put the bicycle in a standing position against the walls of the house from one side of the bicycle which was the off side. When that position didn’t work, he put the bicycle in a standing position against a tree, and worked from the other side of the bicycle. That position didn’t work and so, the author held it up high for him, while the man was lying on the ground, with his head between the wheels. He worked at it from below. Such a position made the oil in the machine drop upon him. This forced him to change the position again. He took the bicycle away from the author and doubled himself across it till he lost his balance and fell on his head.
Then he lost his temper and tried bullying the thing. The bicycle, I was glad to see, showed spirit; and the subsequent proceedings degenerated into little else than a rough-and-tumble fight between him and the machine. One moment the bicycle would be on the gravel path, and he on top of it; the next, the position would be reversed— he on the gravel path, the bicycle on him. Now he would be standing flushed with victory, the bicycle firmly fixed between his legs. But his triumph would be short-lived. By a sudden, quick movement it would free itself and, turning upon him, hit him sharply over the head with one of its handles
degenerated into: were reduced to
rough-and-tumble: rough, disorderly and unrestrained fight or struggle
The fact that the bicycle dropped oil on his face and also made him slide over onto his head angered the man. He lost his temper and began bullying the bicycle. However, the bike didn’t take all the bullying and showed a fighting spirit, which the author was glad to see. When the bicycle showed spirit, the subsequent proceedings were nothing more than a rough struggle between the man and the machine. First, the machine would be lying on the gravel path with the man trying to beat it on top of the machine. Next moment, the man would be on the gravel path with the bicycle on top of it. After more fighting, the man won. He was full of feelings of victory. But his triumph didn’t last long because the very moment the bicycle, which was fixed between the man’s legs firmly, freed itself with a couple of quick moves. The bicycle then took revenge by hitting the man’s head sharply with one of its handles.
At a quarter to one, dirty and dishevelled, cut and bleeding, he said, “I think that will do”, and rose and wiped his brow.
The bicycle looked as if it also had had enough of it. Which had received most punishment it would have been difficult to say. I took him into the back kitchen where, so far as was possible, he cleaned himself. Then I sent him home.
disheveled: make untidy
When it had stuck a quarter to one, the man, who was dirty, untidy, cut and bleeding, stood up and wiped his brow to remove the sweat. He said he felt that that much work was enough for that day.
The bicycle, the author comments, also looked as though it had received enough punishment. But he couldn’t decide who had gotten more punishment – the man or the bicycle. The author then took the man into the back kitchen where the man tried to tidy himself up as best as he could for the time being. Then, the author sent him home so that they both could rest.
A Bicycle in Good Repair Questions Answers
Q1. “I got up early, for me.” It implies that
(i) he was an early riser.
(ii) he was a late riser.
(iii) he got up late that morning.
Mark the correct answer.
Ans. (ii) he was a late riser.
Q2. The bicycle “goes easily enough in the morning and a little stiffly after lunch.” The remark is .
Mark your choice(s).
Ans. (i) humorous.
Q3. The friend shook the bicycle violently. Find two or three sentences in the text which express the author’s disapproval of it.
Ans. (i) I said, “Don’t do that; you’ll hurt it.”
(ii) I did not see why he should shake it; it had not done anything to him. Besides, if it wanted
shaking, I was the proper person to shake it. I felt much as I should had he started whacking my dog.
Q4. “…if not, it would make a serious difference to the machine.” What does ‘it’ refer to?
Ans. ‘It’ here refers to the number of the ball-bearings. The author’s friend wanted to say that if the number of ball-bearings they found were lesser than the number of ball-bearings which got rolled out, they would not be able to put back the machine to its original structure. Hence, there would be a serious difference in the machine.
Working with the Text
Q1. Did the front wheel really wobble? What is your opinion? Give a reason for your answer.
Ans. No, the front wheel did not really wobble. According to me, the author’s friend just wanted to show pff his mechanic skills to the author and so, he tried to repair the bicycle.
Q2. In what condition did the author find the bicycle when he returned from the tool shed?
Ans. The author found the bicycle in pieces. The man was playing with the front wheel while the remnant of the bicycle was there on the gravel path.
Q3. “Nothing is easier than taking off the gear-case.” Comment on or continue this sentence in the light of what actually happens.
Ans. The man said that nothing was easier than taking off the gear-case. He, according to me, thought that opening the gear-case was a piece of cake, and it was. However, opening a gear-case and repairing the gear-case are two very different things. Even though taking it off was an easy task, the man couldn’t repair it.
Q4. What special treatment did the chain receive?
Ans. When the man gave up looking for the remaining screws, he said that he would examine the chain. He had to tighten the chain properly. However, the first time he tightened the chain, he tightened it so much that it would not move at all. Then, he loosened it so much that it was twice as loose as it was before. This was the special treatment the chain received.
Q5. The friend has two qualities — he knows what he is doing and is absolutely sure it is good. Find the two phrases in the text which mean the same.
Ans. The friend has two qualities that fascinate the author greatly: Cheery confidence and inexplicable hopefulness. His hopefulness and confidence ensure that whatever the man is doing is correct and that, if it doesn’t work once, he doesn’t lose heart in the way.
Q6. Describe ‘the fight’ between the man and the machine. Find the relevant sentences in the text and write them.
Ans. The fight between the man and the machine was nothing more than a rough-and-tumble fight. At first, the man would be on top of the bicycle while beating it badly. Then, the position would be reversed and the bicycle would be beating the man. After a while, the man was able to fix the machine between his legs. However, his triumph didn’t lat long because the machine freed itself and then hit him sharply with one of its handles.
Working with the Language
Q1. Rewrite each of the following sentences using should/ ought to/must in place of the italicised words. Make other changes wherever necessary.
(i) You are obliged to do your duty irrespective of consequences.
(ii) You will do well to study at least for an hour every day.
(iii) The doctor says it is necessary for her to sleep eight hours every night.
(iv) It is right that you show respect towards elders and affection towards youngsters.
(v) If you want to stay healthy, exercise regularly.
(vi) It is good for you to take a walk every morning.
(vii) It is strongly advised that you don’t stand on your head.
(viii) As he has a cold, it is better for him to go to bed.
Ans. (i) You ought to do your duty irrespective of consequences.
(ii) You ought to study at least for an hour every day.
(iii) The doctor says she must sleep eight hours every night.
(iv) It is a must that you show respect towards elders and affection towards youngsters.
(v) You ought to exercise regularly if you want to remain healthy.
(vi) You should take a walk every morning.
(vii) You should not stand on your head.
(viii) As he has a cold, he should go to bed.
Q2. Use should/must/ought to appropriately in the following sentences.
(i) People who live in glass houses ________ not throw stones.
(ii) You _______ wipe your feet before coming into the house, especially during the rains.
(iii) You _______ do what the teacher tells you.
(iv) The pupils were told that they _________ write more neatly.
(v) Sign in front of a park: You ________ not walk on the grass.
(vi) You _______ be ashamed of yourself for having made such a remark.
(vii) He left home at 9 o’clock. He ________ be here any minute.
(viii) “Whatever happened to the chocolate cake?” “How _______ I know? I have just arrived.”
Ans. (i) People who live in glass houses should not throw stones.
(ii) You ought to wipe your feet before coming into the house, especially during the rains.
(iii) You must do what the teacher tells you.
(iv) The pupils were told that they should write more neatly.
(v) Sign in front of a park: You must not walk on the grass.
(vi) You ought to be ashamed of yourself for having made such a remark.
(vii) He left home at 9 o’clock. He should be here any minute.
(viii) “Whatever happened to the chocolate cake?” “How should I know? I have just arrived.”
Q3. Divide each of the following sentences into its parts. Write meaningful parts. If necessary, supply a word or two to make each part meaningful.
(i) I went to the tool shed to see what I could find. (3 parts)
(ii) When I came back he was sitting on the ground. (2 parts)
Ans. (i) I went to the tool shed. I went to see. What could I find?
(ii) I came back. He was sitting on the ground.
Q(i) Now arrange the words given in the box under the three headings — prefix, suffix and part of the word.
en (part of the word)
(ii) Find new words in your textbook and put them under the same headings.
en (part of the word)