It started out as a whim. My friend and bike builder/tuner, Nikolaus, suggested the idea to me on a car ride to and from a rally.
“Have you considered a single speed?”
“Not really. Why should I?”
And from there sprang my Witerok Crossbyrd. Rebuilt from an E-Bay cast off, it features a single chain wheel in front and a lone gear in back. Sure it has disk brakes, but there are times I feel I’m back on my JC Higgins and I’m 10 years old again.
It’s not just about the bike. The single metaphor extends to my life. Coming out of a committed 2-year relationship, I’ve spent the last year falling out of love with a woman I consider the love of my life.
Nik’s timing couldn’t have been better.
I brought the bike with me to Tucson this spring. On it, I’ve found myself escaping from reality very quickly. On the Huckleberry Loop, around my sister’s eastside neighborhood, or across town to the university. It is taking me away both physically and mentally. I get the workout and to pile on the miles while taking my mind off the woman and all of the memories on the roads and trails.
And all with one speed.
It can be fast on the flat or, if I approach things the right way, fast on the hills. I’ve yet to have to get off the bike on the steep hill or climb.
The point of all of this and the reason for the comparison is that just when we think we have to be over equipped (multi speeds on the bike or overthinking a relationship) we really don’t. Bring things down to the basics and maybe, just maybe, things will work out.
My single speed is launching my new single life.