I am not much of a drinking man (at least since I left the Navy), but I think I had a blackout a couple of weeks ago. When I woke up the next morning I discovered that I had signed up for a one hundred mile bike ride in Kansas.

I am not much of a bike rider either.

But right there on the official list of riders on the Dirty Kanza 200 ride in Emporia, Kansas, there I was. The ride runs through the historic Tall Grass Prairie preserve, one of the last remnants of what most of America once looked like. And apparently I paid for the privilege, so there is no turning back. I’m going to ride a bike for a hundred miles in the middle of a prairie, located one hundred and sixty miles from the geographic middle of the United States, and a million miles from nowhere.

In one day.

Actually, it is not a hundred miles. It is APPROXIMATELY a hundred miles. The halfway point is at 68 miles, so “APPROXIMATELY” in Kansas talk means plus or minus 36 miles.

I’m guessing that it is not helpful that I just had knee surgery, and that I cannot yet bend my knee far enough to push a pedal around one revolution. But those are details.

Two of my brothers are in the ride too, so if they can do it, so can I. You just have to mentally picture yourself crossing the finish line and it will happen. It is called visualization.

This is what I visualize.



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  1. Jeff, I played rugby with a buddy of your’s Jeff Best, on the Ranger.

    If you’re riding…come on up US75 from Emporia, and do our 50-mile ride in Sabetha. It’s a nice little jaunt.

  2. Mike,
    I have friends that ride, they are in great shape. I’ve determined that roundish is a shape I can handle. I might lose some of the roundness, I’ve got two weeks of “Mush” to eat due to oral surgery. Take care of your teeth and go to the dentist often!

    I’ve been exposed to Broadside for a long time, not sure when it started but I started in the Navy in 1971 – in 2002 I was indoctrinated by the Marines to be an LCPO for Anti-Terrorism and Force Protection. Navy is easier.

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