In Memoriam

 PASSED ON TO HER REWARD: “Trixie,” a beloved/feared fixed-gear commuter bike, after a lingering illness.  A minor local celebrity, “Trixie the Fixie” was perhaps best known for her surly disposition and repeated attempts to kill her owner.  She was 32.

Imported from France circa 1974 as a ten-speed racing bike, Trixie distinguished herself as an untrustworthy and fickle companion on the road, qualities that would remain her most noted personality traits throughout a long and mayhem-filled life.  Extremely speedy, yet willful and capricious to a fault, Trixie’s fundamentally evil soul did not suffer fools gladly.  The fact that Trixie seemed to revel in the countless random maimings and improbable injuries that she inflicted upon her numerous, ill-fated owners only served to confirm that Trixie’s shapely cast lugs and stout steel tubing were most likely forged by Satan himself somewhere deep in the fires of Hell.

Trixie’s fortunes temporarily declined as her reputation as a man-killer spread and she eventually exhausted the supply of poor, witless souls willing to risk crippling injury by climbing aboard and riding her.  At her lowest ebb, Trixie spent her days leaned up against a wall in an alleyway behind a shopping mall, abandoned as trash.

Trixie’s career of evil was unwittingly revived by members of the local fire department.  Called out to extinguish a dumpster fire (a blaze that was, no doubt, set by Trixie), she was retrieved by one of the firemen and brought back to the station.  Given this new lease on life, Trixie quickly picked up where she left off, injuring several off-duty firemen who attempted to use her to run errands.

Too dangerous for the local fire department, Trixie was hastily passed along to a local cycling enthusiast.  Her vintage lugged steel frame and horizontal rear dropouts made Trixie a prime candidate for conversion to a fixed-gear courier bike.  Re-sprayed a bilious shade of green and fitted with inexpensive track components, Trixie entered the most notorious phase of her career.

It was as a fixie that Trixie’s truly malevolent qualities fully blossomed.  Pressed into service as a daily commuter, Trixie made the most of her many opportunities to inflict grievous injury on the unsuspecting.  Trixie quickly lived up to her lethal reputation, frequently using her ever-whirling pedals to impart impromptu physics lessons on her owner, banging his shins or hurling him improbable distances at the slightest provocation.

At the time of her passing, Trixie was caught plotting yet another vile attempt on her owner’s life.  An inspection of Trixie’s frameset during routine maintenance revealed a hidden crack in one of her dropouts.  The consequences of such a failure at speed do not bear thinking about.  Given Trixie’s advanced age and dubious provenance, she was officially scrapped on March 12, 2006.

Despite (or, perhaps, because of) all of her failings, Trixie was deeply loved by her last owner.  Trixie demanded respect and attention, and in return she gave much joy and, on occasion, serious bodily injury.

She will be missed.

In lieu of flowers, a contribution in memory of “Trixie the Fixie” may be made to the Mt. Vernon Hospital Emergency Room Coffee Fund.


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