"It never gets any easier. You just go faster." ---Greg Lemond
"Don't buy upgrades. Ride up grades." --- Eddy Merckx
"You drive like shit." ---The Car Whisperer


2008 - The Best That I Could Do

This time of year, everyone...everyone...puts out a top ten list.

Mostly it is just digging around online or through iTunes libraries to find the most obscure bands from Scandinavia to Brazil to simply enhance hipster cred. A bit more respectable are book and movie lists. I'm lucky to have seen 10 new movies all year - maybe five real books in that time span - so to accumulate a deep pool with which to make a list from is pretty impressive in my opinion.

So in order to get on the band wagon, I've started a bit of a tradition of my own over the last few years - a more personal list of the achievements and highlights (and lowlights) of the year. This year will be a bit more cycling specific (shocker) but this year was still quite well-rounded, I'm happy to say. And for this year, now that I have some depth of my own, I'd like to a take a more retrospective approach, with commentary were appropriate.

I now give you:

2008 - The Best That I Could Do

1. My first full winter of base-training. By time training camp in California arrived not a moment too soon, it was done, in the books, count-it-and-let's-see-where-you-are. I spent endless hours pedaling in place as it snowed and sub-zero winds blew outside, while Prince, Air and The Prodigy droned on in my headphones, and watched I Boonen win 2005 Paris-Roubaix over and over and over..so much it all gave me Dr. David Bowman-like visions. I hit the weights three times a week at the ratty and well-worn Park District gym with Mark, and rode on and on for hours more with teammates in an Oak Park basement. And what did it get me?

2. To the tops of Black Mountain and Mt. Mitchell...

3. And to downstate Illinois, where I was achingly close yet too far away upon the bricks of Hillsboro.

4. I took a huge step in my life - about time some would say (Mom...Dad...shut up), and moved in with the love of my life into a beautiful Logan Square apartment. Our family has grown quite a bit, too.

5. I received my first payout...and then my second just two weeks later. It felt pretty damn good have that .0001% return of my biking investment!

6. Superweek and the rest of the summer racing season came and went with my first ever podium - including one in the State Championship Road Race - a heartbraking crash and lot of mediocrity. But at least I looked good...

7. My hero died. I've listened and hung onto every one of George Carlin's words since I first bought a cassette tape of Class Clown after seeing his HBO special in 1984.

8. I took an active part in the Illinois Justice System.

9. Katy and I watched history roll in on an unrelenting tide of peace, goodwill, and good, old-fashioned relief through Grant Park on November 4th. We enjoyed it with good food and even better friends and huge smiles on our faces.

10. Blago.

Honorable Mention:
- The New Bike
- My First Sonnet
- There was a lot to Hate...

1 comment:

Apertome said...

Great collection of rides and other happenings. The Mount Mitchell ride sounds like it was particularly awesome.