Monthly Archives: October 2013


I prefer sandlot rules and pick-up games. Pick teams and go for it. Call your own fouls, play until dark or someone has to go home. No refs, no registration, no uniforms, and no rules other than those universally recognized on the playgrounds of the world. Something about the organization, the ranking, and the clinical approach to determining a first and a last sucks the fun out of sports for me, especially those sports that thrive just fine without those things. I am only speaking for myself here, so no offense to my racer friends, many of whom also soul ride with the outlaws and outliers as well. I want to be faster than all of you, stronger than anyone on a given day- but never line up to prove it. I want to haunt the court like Earl Manigault at Rucker Park, watch surf contests from the shadows like Miki Da Cat. I want the winners to know there is someone out there who can take it all away from them. Victory is fleeting, but legend is eternal.

I have a few friends I consider bike legends. A 43 year-old flying over road gaps in the woods of Oregon, no Go Pro camera necessary- just doing it for the sake of flight, or another one humbly plowing the sands of the Apalachicola National Forest seeing moment after pine needle-dappling moment of north Florida beauty that gets saved in an organic database, or as ink on a page, but never in a series of 1’s and 0’s. One rides a grit-splattered steel frame powering down the rainy bike lanes of Highway 27, alone in the night near Lake Okeechobee, pushing a two-hundred mile day alone in the saddle, 18-wheelers pulling the air-horn in warning and salute.

I really don’t need to compare them, or myself, or racing to anything else. I just need to say they inspire me, and I will forever lift their achievements up around campfires and hunched over handlebars. Every time I clip in or swing a leg over the saddle I know the potential is inside me.

Epic is everywhere.



You can talk all day about your bigshot deals made over sushi and how you schooled those bureaucrats down at headquarters, but none of those accomplishments mean a thing when you are unloading your bike from your vehicle down at the trailhead and you bump into a friend lean as a piece of rebar. Sure, he has regrets too, or one hopes so, but being slow will never be one of them. That is your regret alone today, or at least in this parking lot. So you rationalize your choices, and you chuck yourself on the arm for keeping that blood pressure down. You take a moment to count your thousands of blessings–your beautiful partner, your apricot poodle, getting that damned deck pressure-washed and sealed, reconciling all of those receipts, nephews and nieces, a rock-solid van, and moving that blog to WordPress. You kick ass buddy!

But- those are all just the saccharin song mewling voices of weakness uniting in a choir of shame while your buddy, and Lord knows he ain’t perfect, but there he sits a few hundred miles of riding into his month while you try to catch a quick 7.5. He maintains eye contact, no telltale glances to the midriff and why won’t he? Just one reason to hate his guts. To literally hate his glossy-entrailed, sinewy guts for his sneering pride would be so helpful, but there is nothing but love there, and you manage to laugh together, all three of you, as your other buddy contemplates his own status, mercifully and safely in the mean on this equation. Ha ha ha! We laugh about riding bikes and not riding bikes, and everyone knows the score here. Bikes. We like them. So off he goes on a road rocket while you galumph into the woods like a bear at hibernation weight, your over psi tires sagging into the sand. During your brief and painful ride you have some epiphanies- about commuting, more big deals over sushi, and how you don’t work for things, you work for the mission man, and that doesn’t ever need to change. So pivot bro, make the necessary adjustments, ride somewhere and write something that will let you show your pixelized face to Reverend Dick and the rest of your circus friends.


San Felasco

CHARGE! I yelled, and rushed out onto the battlefield alone, the only one among my squad to register for the San Felasco 50 off-road eco-tour on January 11. Registrations was closed within 20 minutes and there I was, stranded with no way to retreat. Over the lip of their foxhole the eyes of my peers showed no regret. “Poor dumb bastard.” Those eyes said.

It had to be done. Goals are important. Without San Felasco to fear and hate I am just another guy with a bike and a bunch of excuses. Besides, I can pull myself together one more one more time. I should change the name of this site to the endless comeback.

To quote a friend, “Pennies in a pile make a dollar after a while.” The same is true for miles. If I can accumulate enough of them I can be ready. I am using this past weekend, with a baseline of zero miles, as a starting point.

About 90 days from now, I will suit up and ride, and accept my consequences.