if you could start from scratch, and build it up from the frame all the way to the streamers on the handle bars--
what would your perfect urban-suburban-weekend touring bike be like?
for me it would be about resolving contradictions:
+ very lightweight..but indestructible, capable of crashing through potholes and over speedbumps
+ straight bars...but long enough frame or other configuration to crouch down
+ fast, intuitive shifting...but simple--maybe a smaller rear cluster, with slightly wider range from cog to cog--or perhaps just two rings up front--not to mention, a final low gear to handle 18% slopes
+ good handling...but happy with a loaded luggage bag / pannier (like Topeak's setup) on the rear.
in other words--like the perfect wife--sexy, but practical