A Campy peanut-butter wrench. One of the oldest tools I own, hanging from the seat bag of the only bike I’d use it on.
That’s because the wheels of this Bianchi Pista are secured by nuts, not quick releases. So if I get a flat, I need the wrench to take the wheels off.
Let me rephrase that: I need a wrench, not this particular one. But this is one of only two wrenches I have (the other is a Campy 5mm) that reminds me of riding in the 1970s.
Memory athletes often use a memory palace strategy to perform prodigious feats of recall–the order of a shuffled deck of cards, for instance.
That technique, associating things you want to remember with a series of familiar spaces, takes study and practice.
My reminders are of the accidental kind. A letter that never hit the trash. (Dad used a manual typewriter.) A framed print too big to ignore. (When ceiling plaster of an early apartment fell, it missed the print and landed on me.) A one-day clock with weight-driven works. (That grandparent smoked cigars and grew tomatoes behind a garage with a dirt floor.)
And yes, an Italian wrench meant for one use but nicknamed for a different one.
I have yet to spread peanut butter with it. Nor did I need it to change a flat today.
I did, however, remember to carry it. (Just as I did when I rode an older coast-free bicycle from Washington to Normal for breakfast at a place that specialized in gyros.)
It’s one of those things that’s hard to forget.