Wednesday, May 14

Bicycles: What's in a Name?

Surprisingly, one of the questions I'm asked most often about my bike is what its name is. Like, what I named it. And if it was a boy or a girl. The first time I was asked, I was taken off-guard, having never even thought about it. I don't know, I just had it. It's a bike. Fuji Newest 2.0. Just a beater sport bike, but all I can afford. But after having ridden it for a while, I realized that it does have a bit of personality--or at least its own quirks.

Portsmouth Bikes
After thinking about it for a while, I came up with the name Tachikoma. The tachikomas, or think tanks, were spider-like robot tanks in the cyberpunk anime series Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex. The tachikomas are blue and silver. They are genderless and Japanese. Kind of like my Fuji. In the storyline, they slowly grow their own quirks and individualities in their artificial intelligence. This happens because their caretaker, Batou, used 'natural oil,' which caused an interaction with the proteins in one of the tachikoma's neural processors. They become unstable and are decommissioned from combat use, and sent back to the factory where they were assembled, and they are given other uses (without their weaponry). In they end, they break away from their separate assigned tasks, and come back and sacrifice themselves to save Batou, and thus proving their sapience, despite their programming.



It's a story I like, that makes me feel good. The tachikoma physical characteristics match my Fuji, too. And sometimes I use natural oil instead of synthetic. So, there's my bike: Tachikoma. Does your bike have a name? A story? A gender?

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