On naming your bike

You know when you start thinking about something and then it manages to crop up everywhere else in your life, too?

That’s happening for me right now with the idea of naming your bicycle. I’ve had my bike for almost 9 years and have never felt particularly compelled to give it a name, but recently I realized I’ve been referring to it on this blog as “bikey.” Not exactly a name, but not exactly the totally impersonal “my bike” or “my Trek” either. It’s a term of endearment, perhaps–but I haven’t really thought about it as a name. My bike is, after all, a bicycle, however much I love it. I don’t feel the need to personify it any more than that.

But just last week, when I was telling someone about how my bike was halfway stolen, he asked me if my bike had a name. No, I said, though I told him about how when I was teaching Bike Club and trying to get my kiddos to name their own bikes (sometimes a prudent time filler:), I often said as a means of example that my bike was called Blue Lightning. Which is my idea of a hilarious joke, since I would never call anything I own something so presumptuous.

But since then, the idea of naming bicycles is coming up everywhere. First I saw it on the Community Cycling Center’s website (speaking of Bike Club…), an article about Marinueasa, a woman who earned a bike through the Create-A-Commuter Program (basically the adult version of Bike Club). Apparently, she immediately named the bike she earned “Black Beauty.”

Then, earlier today I cruised over to Chasing Mailboxes, a rad D.C.-based bike blog, and saw a post (and a whole host of comments) entirely devoted to naming one’s bicycle. Actually, I just realized now as I went back to link to it that that post is also subtitled “On naming your bike,” so even though I thought I was coming up with an original title for my post, I probably inadvertently stole it simply because it was in my consciousness from my earlier reading. Sorry, MG!

Anyway. I guess there’s no real point to this post except to say that from an entirely stasia-centric perspective, I seem to be creating my own reality in which my thoughts about bike naming have expanded exponentially to comprise much of the bike-blog world I frequent right now. And that though I appreciate that other people name their bicycles, I find it a little ridiculous for myself. Perhaps if I had a fleet of bicycles I might feel the need to distinguish them by giving them fun little names. Though probably not, actually. And I can’t really imagine owning a whole fleet of bicycles anyway.

But enough. I’ve got some more bike blogs to cruise, all of which are probably related to giving bikes some form of name:)

One Comment:

  1. I kept meaning to comment on this post… thanks for the nice compliment on the blog, first of all. And second, I’m of the same mind as you… it’s hard to imagine myself being a namer of bikes, even though I grow to love them in their own way. ALSO, I was so sorry to read about your bike being pillaged… how rotten! I know it’s nothing insurmountable in the grand scheme, but it is a violation and feels awful when it happens.

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