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It’s a Good Start…

I’m going to pick up my 25 year coin – actually, as this publishes, I’ll have had it in my pocket for about 20 minutes, my sponsor having presented it to me at my third meeting in as many days.

As he announced the occasion, in front of a bunch of friends, he’ll no doubt work in that the 25 “is a good start”.  He’s been saying that for the last fifteen years or so, every time an anniversary of mine rolls around.

I would be willing to bet there are a few people out there who were surprised to read that a guy with 25 years would be going to three meetings in three days.  Well, many of us get a little squirrely leading up to anniversaries.  It didn’t happen to me this year but it has in the past, so I figure “better to be safe than sorry”.  I up my meetings every year around my anniversary so I can be prepared should my disease try to sneak its way out of the corner I have it boxed into.

That said, twenty-five years is a good start.  It’s truly been a 25-year winning streak – and that’s why I keep coming back.  I don’t want anything to do with the misery that came with drinking.

Thanks for sticking around, my friends.


One Day and a Wakeup…

Twenty-five years without a drink or a drug.

Not bad.

On November 18th, 1992 I finally stopped digging my own grave.  It’s funny, living life knowing that you’ve been through what will likely be the toughest period of my life before I hit 23 years-old.  The more I think about it, the better it feels.  This isn’t to say all in life will be rosy but once you’ve had to address and recover from being an addict, and gained all of the skills associated with that success, let’s just say it’s like legal cheating when you apply that knowledge to everyday life.  

We often joke that it would be amazing if the rest of the world could have a program like ours – all of the good that would come of it.

Anyway, not much more to say about it today.  I’m just going to bask goodness of it all.  Meeting yesterday, meeting today, dinner with a bunch of sober friends tomorrow.  Good times and noodle salad indeed.

Better to Make Due with what I’ve got than Long for what I haven’t.

For the last five years I’ve taken my trainer to the office and ridden there, during lunch, in the off-season.  

This year things haven’t quite worked out as they had in the past.  Sadly, I just can’t easily fix what’s keeping me from my normal trainer time… so I improvised.

No more noon rides, I put in my 45 minutes on the trainer after I get home, around 5.  

That’s my commitment to fitness.

I can whine and lick my nuts on the couch, or I can get busy making use of what I’ve got – and let’s be clear, I’d need a whole lot of yoga to… well, let’s stay on track here.

I thought it would be interesting to break that down fully.  There are 168 hours in a week.  I only need seven of them to stay fit through the off-season.  Only twelve in-season.

Digging further, I need 50-ish for work and 42-46 for sleep.  Call that 101 on the high side.  That means I’ve got 67 hours left to fit in my seven hours for fitness (and sanity).

I can make that work.  For me, it’s fit and happy or…. not.

Muck, Mud, a Little Slippy, and Cycling with the Crazy Crew on a Tuesday Night

The Weather yesterday was outrageously beautiful.  Not exactly warm, but it wasn’t anywhere close to freezing either, and that’s something to be grateful for this time of year.  I sent out the text in the morning:

Dirt road night ride tonight at 5:30 – my house.

I ended up changing the time to 6 for my wife and Matt, both of whom needed the extra half-hour, but ten till six people started showing up.  I love it when my driveway fills up before a ride, getting a good bunch of us together always means a good laugh is only a mile or two away.

We are the crazy kids – when everyone else is sitting home, warm in their homes, we’re out cruisin’ the dirt roads in the dark:

It rained Sunday but with the glorious weather during the day, I was certain the back roads would have dried out.  I was very wrong.  We dealt with a lot of mush, especially if you were unlucky enough to get out of the tire tracks.  I found my lane and stayed in it so I didn’t get all that muddy – a couple of friends of mine weren’t so fortunate.

Even though it was a squirrely ride at times, I had that “I’m fourteen years old, riding my bike with my friends” grin on my face the whole time.  No matter how stressful life is, give me a ride with my buddies and all of that crap fades to the back for an hour or two.

I love that about cycling.

Are eBikes (Electric Pedal Assist Bikes) the Wave of the Future?  I Certainly Hope not.

A friend told me he read that Focus bikes believes they will, eventually, migrate to making only eBikes.

I know the City of New York doesn’t like the idea.  Bill de Blasio and the fun-hating commies in the New York bureaucracy have already banned them…  They’re actually confiscating them 

On the other hand, apparently there are actually idiots who ride them on sidewalks.  From that perspective, how do you fix that much stupid?

I am not personally impressed with eBikes either.  I have no desire to own one – and I enjoy owning a fairly diverse bunch of bikes.  

That said, I am not lost on the fact that there are plenty of people who could benefit from the electronic assist.  Sadly. I can imagine that many who would need the help would be, how do we say this, technologically challenged.  One could imagine an old-timer cruising down the sidewalk and being afflicted with a case of whiskey throttle.


Beyond that, the reason for my dislike of the bike is the concept itself.  While nobody could be against someone who needs an eBike riding one responsibly…  My God, I’ve been watching that whiskey throttle .gif over and over again – just makes me laugh out loud…  Anyway, what I don’t like is the idea of the lazy using them as a means of weight loss.  How long will it be before we hear of complaints that cycling is a lousy way to lose weight because some dolt is tracking calories based on real cycling but is riding an eBike?

Next will be class-action lawsuits against bike manufacturers, fast food joints, and calorie tracking apps.  “Did you gain 50 pounds whilst riding an eBike to lose weight?  Call Dewey, Cheatum & Howe because you may be entitled to a cash settlement based on the fact that you’re stupid and couldn’t figure out that an eBike that does half of the pedaling for you doesn’t count the same as riding a bike that doesn’t.

Insanity, I tell you!

Next you’ll have STRAVA KOMs being taken with an eBike….  Monkeys will start riding them – hell, at that point you’re only a matter of years away from Planet of the Apes!

On the other hand, those who can’t keep up with the fast groups anymore, all of a sudden would again.  Imagine drafting a dude on an eBike rolling down the road at 25 mph.  That would be awesome!

Hey, on second thought….

On Passing 8,500 Miles for the Year (a Month and a Half Early)

I’m going to pass over 8,500 miles today.  I’ll pass last year’s personal best of 8,509 as well.

Last year I was certain there was no way I’d be able hit 8,500 again, let alone beat it.  I thought it was an anomaly, luck at best.  I don’t know if I’ll be able to hit 9,000 but I’ll be close.


The funny thing is, I’ll do something like 48 miles today to do it.  I rode 18 with my wife and Mike…. I’m over at Chucks house to do another 30.  

Dinner is going to taste good tonight.  

Eight Days: The Excitement Builds

I’ve got eight days until my 25th sober anniversary and I’m starting to get excited.  I can remember when having eight days sober was an awesome feat.  I can remember listening to an open-talk about three weeks into treatment.  The speaker had a year in and I can remember thinking, “One day that could be me”…

A lot has happened in the last quarter of a century, and I’ve enjoyed all of it – even the tough times, and there were plenty.  The tough times just shaped me up for what was coming down the pike.

I can still remember how I used to drink, why I drank the way I did, and I can remember the pain I felt and caused others.  It doesn’t hurt the same way anymore because I’ve repaired that and replaced who that loser was with someone else who has managed to do some good in the aftermath.

I know beyond a shadow of a doubt, if I add just one sip of alcohol to my system, I’ll be off and running stumbling again within days.  I have no hang-up’s about that.  I am a two-fisted drinker and my name is Jim.  Only a fool would think they could mystically turn into a social drinker after some gained self-knowledge and time.

Once you’re a pickle, you never get to go back to being a cucumber – no matter how long you’ve been away from the pickling agent.

And for that little tidbit of self-knowledge, I am grateful.

Eight days to go…