The Day of the Jackhole

The Day of the Jackhole

Celebrating 40 years on this earth

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2010. TransAmerican Jackhole

September 2, 2011


I did it. I rode my asshole bicycle with a brain across America. Yes, I had a setback. Bad accidents suck. But not for one minute did it ever occur to me not to continue. At some point. I figured this year, next year, it will happen when it happens. People ask me how did I ever….?

How did I ever what? Get back on the bike?

How could I not?

There is nothing special about me riding 4,410 miles. Although I will repeat that number for effect. 4,410 miles. It’s a great feat, personally, but no great feat. No fantastic obstacle. People do it all the time.

Anyone can do this.

Anyone.

If you wanted to—and I’m pointing at you through this screen—if you wanted to do this, you could.

I’m not brave. In fact, I’m one of the most terrified people I know. But to run away from fear is sooooooo pointless. You learn nothing, and you retreat to a place that is dark and cave-like. If anything, that crappy crash taught me about love. It taught me that as much as I sometimes feel alone in life, people give a shit. And it’s not just your family. Friends care. Friends love. And you should tell ’em that it’s a two-way street. You should let ’em know that holy shit, you love them right back. It’s NOT corny to let them know.

I thought my brain was broken. In those first eight concussion-filled days, it just didn’t work like it used to. I was acutely aware of it, but I was so afraid I couldn’t tell anyone. It scared the absolute crap out of me. Would it ever be the same? Would I ever be able to make a decision again? Would I ever be able to be left alone and not find myself crying for no apparent reason? I know now that this was the concussion talking, but at the time I felt utterly adrift.

And then one morning, I woke up and all the cogs meshed. I was me again.

It think back to this time, to how I was so blase and friends were so ‘we’re coming to get you!’ and it lays me flat on the floor. Like a hot crepe.

I don’t deserve the people who love me. But I will absolutely love them back.

In 2010, I learned that humans have an amazing capacity for love and curiosity and achievement.

This ride restored my faith in humanity. For all the shit that goes down, for all the hate and vitriol and people stealing cabs, and pushing in line and being shitty to each other and living in fear that their neighbors have eyes on their kids, most humans are good and think good thoughts and are genuinely curious beings who want to help.

But some of you are dicks. And I won’t waste any of my time listening to you.

 


Born in 1971?

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I was born in 1941 which is the same as 1971 except for one digit.

Ron Bloomquist

February 12, 2019