Do you have a name for your bike?
If you do, you are not alone. A lot of us do. There is actually a name for it. Anthropomorphize. It means to attribute human form or personality to things not human. Well, I anthropomorphize my bikes. They are my friends. My mentors.
I purchased Chas 35 years ago. My first bespoke frame designed and built by Roberts Cycles of Croydon, England. This bespoke frame building business was started following WW II by Charlie Roberts.
My father’s name was also Charlie. He was best known as “Chas” to family and friends. I lost him father shortly after purchasing the Roberts bike at a time when a young man needs mature, fatherly advice. “Chas”, the bike, took my father’s place in a way. It happened slowly. As I spent more time with “Chas”, I realized he filled a void in my life, and helped me deal with daily challenges much the same way I suspect my father might have by being there for me, helping me relax, and challenging me to resolve my problems in imaginative and resourceful ways.
Last year, I rebuilt “Chas”, and outfitted him with an Shimano Ultegra group and wheel set. Today, he is better than ever, there when I need him, still challenging me to be better.
“Lou” is a racing steed. An ultra light full-carbon bike designed to go fast and climb. He is a treat to ride. Fast. Exhilarating. Responsive. He is a Louis Garneau designed right here in Canada. I am a proud Canadian, and go out of my way to support both local and Canadian companies. “Lou” is much younger than “Chas”. I purchased him second hand from a racer friend, and over the years, upgraded him with carbon handlebars, a Dura-Ace wheel set and compact cranks. He is a beauty, and my preferred ride on fast smooth surfaces.
“Lou” makes me feel young. He helps me keep pace with a younger crowd, and when I am astride him I’m 20 years younger. Well, that’s how it feels.
Do you name your bikes?