Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Why I Don't Ride

From the owner of Joe's Bike Shop, whom many of you saw on the roads and at the pit stops, assisting Riders with their bicycle issues. 

A quick message to everyone who rode; who helped; who donated,

Why don't I ride? In short, because it looks really hard! And yet, as I drive by you all, as you all ride by me, as I fix countless flats, all I see are smiles. Everyone relishing in the endeavor and all that it means, and knowing that for a cause this profound, it should be hard.

So if I don't ride, why do I spend my weekend driving back and forth along twisty roads getting lost, pumping enough air to make my arms hurt, fixing bikes that are often far less ready for such a challenge than the riders? Simple, because you let me. After five years, you couldn't keep me away now if you tried. I tell my staff, watching the shop while I'm away, that I'm off to work, but that couldn't be further from the truth. I have an absolute blast! You guys are the best.

But this speaks to a deeper question; why is it so much fun? We do a fair amount of support for a lot of charity rides, good causes all, but none compare. Why? Because it seems every single one of you realizes this ride is not for you. This ride is for the people you help. This is a charity ride and you guys get that. You may have, and do, have fun doing it. You may have personal challenges that a 140 miles provides, and you meet them. But you never seem to lose sight of the people you are riding for. I don't know if the organizers simply do a good job of not letting you forget what it's really all about, or that they do such a great job organizing and supporting the ride that there's nothing to complain about, or that it's a culture you've created that won't tolerate any degree of selfishness, or most likely, that you only invite good people to do the ride, but whatever the reason, you all make it so much fun to help you all. It is such a treat to support you all as you do so much to help so many people that need so much help so badly.

So, in short; thank you, thank you, thank you. Thank you for letting us feel a part of it, thank you for inspiring us, and thank you for all the help you provide so many.


PS. This is what charity rides are supposed to be. You get it like no other group. Thank you.

PPS. If anyone feels compelled to pay for the tubes, tires, or work provided, and you needn't as we are more than happy to provide them (some did ask), please make a donation to Moveable Feast. We will not accept any payment.

1 comment:

Hanna said...

Great letter, Joe and thanks for allll your help this past weekend! This was my first year riding and I too was overwhelmed by the positive energy and dedication to the cause. What a great event! Moveable Feast is a special organization with some pretty amazing supporters!People like you make this event the success that it is!

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