You may be about to pass a fixed-gear bicycle if…

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.

About 16incheswestofpeoria

Former bicycle mechanic, current peruser of books, feeder of birds.
This entry was posted in Bianchi, maintenance and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to You may be about to pass a fixed-gear bicycle if…

  1. Pingback: Of course you’re not a professional—you work on your own bicycle | 16incheswestofpeoria

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