An Imagined Chat with Sookie, My Fuji Silhouette Bicycle, Upon Her Forced Retirement

Hi Sookie, are you there?

Yes, Dude, I am.

Good! Well, Sookie, we need to talk.

Oh, that doesn’t sound good.

I’m afraid I have some news that you probably aren’t going to like.

I’m a big girl, lay it on me.

Do you remember when we were at the Sun & Ski Sports bike shop the other day?

Yes, I remember! I always enjoy seeing Mike in the bike shop and the other guys. And all those cool new bikes, including some of my decendants.

Sookie resting comfortably at home after the news.

Well, Mike took a look at you because your rear brake wasn’t working great, but he noticed something else.

Yeah, I know. He said there’s a crack in my frame and you shouldn’t ride me anymore.

That’s right, he did. I’m so sad I didn’t want to even bring it up with you.

Well, Dude, like I said I’m a big girl. Like the song goes, “There is a season, turn, turn turn…”

Is that a wheel pun?

Yes it is!

Well, I’m glad you have a sense of humor about this.

Of course I’m sad, but I’m really tired. I think it’s time I retired. (Not punning.) It’ll be ok.

Yes, but I want to have a second opinion. And maybe we can fix you!

I wouldn’t get your hopes up, Dude. I’m old. And I think it’s time.

Time for what, my dear friend?

Time for you to meet and see someone new. Get on GoFundMe and get a new bike!

Really, are you sure? I’m skeptical the internet will buy me a new bicycle. Usually that’s for people needing kidneys and stuff. And it would feel like I’m cheating on you.

Look, Dude, we’ve been on some great adventures. But life moves on. I’m not immortal.

img_20181124_1920441574307874155153862288.jpg
Mike in the bike shop at Sun & Ski making a sad face pointing to Sookie after diagnosing the cracked frame.

Well, you have a good point. I’m not going to live forever either. Thank goodness! The rent’s too damn high in this town.

Think about it, buddy. Ask and you shall receive! Open to abundance. Visualize it!

Have you been reading The Secret or watching Oprah? Sounds a little New Agey.

I’m just telling you that if you put an intention out into the universe, something good will come back to you. Maybe someone will loan or give you a used bike. You never know.  I mean, you needed a new bike, and I came into your life back in 2015, right?

I suppose you’re right. But society says I should give up on the writing and get a job.

Who says you can’t do both! It’ll just take more discipline and planning.

But what about you, Sookie? Shouldn’t we try to fix you? I cain’t quit you!

I appreciate that, Dude. But I think my time is done. Hey, maybe you can Earn a Bike!

Oh, you mean volunteer at Yellow Bike Project then build one of my own?

Si senor, exactamundo!

Sookie! I didn’t know you spoke Spanish?

Well, duh, yeah, doesn’t everybody in Texas, like you do?

No, unfortunately, they don’t. I’m a little rusty myself. I need a practice buddy.

Well, you can hablar espanol conmigo at any time. So, Dude, watcha gonna do?

I guess I’m going to take your good parts like the seat and grips and hang the rest of you on the wall. Maybe have a memorial. Would you like that, Sookie?

That’s okay. I don’t care what happens to my body after I’m dead. Cremate me and scatter my ashes somewhere special. Just remember all the adventures we had together, that’s enough.

Aw, Sookie, I’m really sad. We did have some awesome adventures, didn’t we?

The fatal flaw is the short horizontal line above the weld. It could spread and break, which is really bad.

We sure did! There were all the solo rides. So many solo rides! And shop rides, social rides, and all the training for the six charity rides for which we raised over $12,000. That’s $2,000 a pop, and 518 miles in seven days! I’m most proud of our work on those. So much effort, time and suffering! But every mile was worth it. Pretty cool stuff, amirite?

Yes, you’re right! Don’t forget the four centuries (104, 108, 101 and 101 = 412 miles!) and the time we got in the Austin American-Statesman for biking 10,000 miles in two years.

Yes, that was quite something. We’ve been a great team, and no one thought we could do it. We showed them, didn’t we?  And no one can ever take that away.  Plus, it’s on Strava!  Strava may miss a few feet of elevation here and there, but Strava does not lie.

YAAASSS, queen! We’ve come a long way, baby! And who knows how many miles you had on you before Thad gave you to me from that time you spent in DC? All the repairs, parts, and time we spent was quite monumental.

Yeah, we could probably reminisce alot more. But that’s why you’re writing the book about those two years, right, Dude?

Yes, you’re right, Sookie. Hopefully someday alot more people will know our story.

That would be fantastic, Dude! Hey, Dude, one last question before we end our chat? You really should go to bed.

Sure, Sookie, ask me anything. You’ve given me so much — taken me so many places where we’ve seen some great things and met some cool people. I’ll always be grateful to you.

I guess my question is more of a request. It’s kind of embarrassing, though.

Go ahead and ask, it’s just us. Hardly anyone is actually reading every post anyway.

Sookie_Fuji_Silhouette
Strava gear summary for Sookie. That’s right, almost 11,000 miles. Not including the 1,500 I did in the second half of 2015. So all told, 12,291 miles on one bike. That’s half the way around the equator, people! Of PLANET EARTH! Hello, is this on?!?!  Bueller?  Anybody?

OK, here’s my question: Will you remember me as your first true bicycle love now and then?

Well, you weren’t my first bike, Sookie.  But you were my first long-term serious relationship, and so yes, there’s alot of big, deep love.  I will definitely remember you, Sookie, I promise!

Even if the internet buys you a fancy new bike?

Of course!  Fancy new bikes are high maintenance and have no scars or personality like you do. You’ve got character out the wazoo. Remember when that woman on a shop ride said about you and my non-clip-in shoes and general greenness, and in what I imagined was a stern German accent?  She said that I was “doing so vell… for your … Situation“?

Yes, that was hilarious! Especially since you only have a one-pack. Tee hee! (The Situation was that guy on that MTV show Jersey Shore who was always showing off abs.)  

Yeah, whatevs. Hey, I’ve got a question for you, smart ass. Do you agree that I’ve ridden you so much that “I think I’m turning Japanese, I think I’m turning Japanese, I think I’m turning Japanese, I really think so?”

No, I don’t. You don’t turn Japanese.  Now who’s the smart ass? Anyway, I’m Japanese-American (by way of Taiwan, like most bikes in the US), and people who don’t like that can just deal with it.  Well, ok, Dude. It’s been a real pleasure working with you for three and a half years. I’m going to miss you too, but we’re a part of each other now.

That’s very true, Sookie. Wise words from a wise woman. Enjoy your retirement! You really dsserve it. And I’m sorry for taking you off those sweet jumps and all the other ouchies I gave you.

No problem, Dude. This is Sookie Fuji-san Silhouette signing off, until our next chat. Love ya!

Good night to you, too, Sookie. Let’s hug it out.

OK, uh, sure.  You do realize I’m only a bicycle and you imagined this whole chat, right?

I do, Sookie, but maybe somewhere it’s like Toy Story and you’re really alive. A Dude can dream, right?

Yes, he can. Sweet dreams, A Dude Abikes — if that’s your real name.

You know it’s not. Remember, we’re not supposed to talk about the Witless Protection Program.

Don’t you mean Witness Protection Program? 

No, that’s a different one.  The Witless version is a little less organized and poorly funded, because it was founded by Tinyhands Orangehead, #45, the future ex-president.

OK, yes, of course.  Silly Dude! Go to bed now and dream a little dream of you and I riding off into the sunset together.

That sounds perfect, Sookie. I will. Thank you for everything.

Ya, sure, ya betcha! Sookie OUT!

Sad News - Sookies Last Ride (question mark) 112418

The record of my ride with a stop at the Sun & Ski bike shop. Strava link

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