I'm doing the Ride To Conquer Cancer next year.
There. I said. It wasn't so scary.
Yes, we're restarting Crush The Tumour With Humour (CTTWH) as part of my bid to continue to talk myself into doing the Ride To Conquer Cancer (RTCC), and maybe raise a couple of bucks in donations for cancer research.
I used to say that I wanted to "raise money for cancer." My good friend Fiona Rintoul, she of the very classy Flip Flop Shop (FFS) at Fourth and Burrard (shameless name drop and plug to receive discount footwear), always seemed to be around to correct me when I did that, explaining, "cancer is doing just fine. You want to raise money for cancer research."
Oh, Fiona. We're so BFFs. (Yes, I've suddenly become infatuated with abbreviations.)
Fiona did the RTCC this year pregnant. Hello? How cool is that?
It was her husband, Scott Rintoul (shameless name drop), and our buddy Carla McAloney behind this whole thing for me.
Carla hit me with the soft sell, the "You know...Scott and I were talking about it and we think you could do the ride...I mean, it would be a good story, considering the eight surgeries, the six rods in your back and all that CANCER you had."
OK. Carla never said the last part about the operations and the hardware and the CANCER. But she was totally feeling it. I know.
Then Rintoul came in. He's a closer and, to make matters worse, I'm a sucker. I would follow Rintoul into a fire. It's quite sad.
He throws down a couple of "you could totally do it," and "we could hang out and it would be great," and, even though the little voice in my head is screaming, "ARE YOU CRAZY?!?!? YOU DON'T LIKE TO DRIVE THAT FAR?", I heard myself say out loud and quite clearly, "Yeah, Scott. That's a totally good idea. Do you want me to double you on my handlebars?"
So we went to buy a bike. Carla took me to Dizzy Cycles in Kits (most shameless of all name drops, considering I need more stuff and could use a discount) and I found the staff to be quite friendly, intelligent and very well groomed.
I picked out a bike. I picked out a big boy helmet. I was excited. I told my wife, the adorable Carol-Ann, and said I wouldn't purchase anything until she saw it all.
She was keen. A few days later, we went back to Dizzy Cycles.
Took the bike up the cash register. Same with the helmet. And a helmet for her.
Went home. Went riding around the block a few times. I was pretty happy, to be honest, because I did lose enough balance from all those operations and all that hospital time that I wasn't sure I could actually get on a bike for any period.
Carla called later that day and asked how it went. I told her that the riding was decent, and I told her I was really surprised that I didn't feel geeky in the helmet.
She laughed and told me that I had the "rock star" of bike helmets.
"It was $275," she said.
I nearly fell and hit my head. Luckily I still had the helmet on. No way Carol-Ann would let me spend that. I yelled up to her in the kitchen, asking her the pricetag for the head gear.
"I think it was $275," she said.
Afterwards, she said that she knew I was freaked out about the whole thing, that I was way out of my comfort zone. She said she wasn't going to have me pull the plug if I didn't get the helmet I wanted.
Geez, I guess I'm really invested in this now.
I have a meeting tonight about dates and times and when the whole 2014 RTCC happens. I'll keep you up to date.
What have I gotten myself into now?