I bought Cycling Plus out of curiosity, it doesn't have any emotional ditches hidden inside and well, I was curious. And it was kind of okay. I read Rob Penn's article about building his ultimate bike, the one that's also a BBC television programme and a book, the one where he goes around the world speccing out the parts he reckons are the best then building them onto a Rourke frame.
It made me think. Not that it would be so amazing to travel around cherry-picking parts from Campag and Chris King and obscure Italian componentry brands, but that it would be infinitely better to build a bike made from parts created by people you love. It's a good idea in theory I guess, but problematic in that you'd have to pragmatically build a series of relationships with people who made every part of a bike - saddles, bars, frames, wheels, spokes... It's a big ask. And to be honest, somewhat unrealistic.
But it made me think about other stuff. About things and love and the reverberations of stuff that sits in your house, in your life. Things that other people left behind. Books, pictures, music, the funny Ecuadorian thing on top of the VCR, the bar tape on my road bike, the strange selection of penguins that pop up all over the house, the little pot the garlic sits in, the plant on top of the bookshelf, the comedy fridge magnet, the Chrismas pudding tea pot and the odd French coffee mug with the hare on the side. And the tea-pot, the little one.
They're all little bits of people. Little triggers for memories. Freeze frame segments of points in life. And I guess somewhere out in the world, little bits of me are floating in other people's lives.