"You have to name her," he said.
His bike is Vicki Vale. If my bike rides with Vicki, she needs a name.
I hadn't seen this bike in ten years. She was rusting slowly in a box in my parents' garage while I hauled myself around Minneapolis and Olympia and Seattle on a mountain bike I thought was tougher than this one.
I couldn't even remember what she looked like until I opened the box two weeks ago: nice old black and yellow Centurion frame, Le Mans on the crossbar.
"She's French and she's not a girl, she's a MANS!"
And, I decided, he's gay. I have a gay bike.
He needed a French name. Within minutes, I knew. One of the only things I remember from my high school French class was affectionately calling someone my "little cabbage": mon petit chou chou.
Please meet CHOU CHOU THE BIKE.