Saturday, May 7, 2011

Dr. Strangelove - Or How I Stopped Worrying and Learned to Love The Tandem

Ever see the movie, "Dr. Strangelove"?  At the end, when Slim Pickens is sitting astraddle the A-Bomb and it finally drops free from the B-52 is one of the most iconic images in the movies.

"Yee-haaaw!" he shouts, as he rides the bomb downward, toward total annihilation.

I often saw that scene in my mind when I would ride as stoker on Bill Turner's tandem.  I got on the back of that purple Specialized, fully expecting to die, but determined to enjoy my trip to Ground Zero.

I remember one time, as we raced the Buffalo Creek course, that we hit the long downhill section, on Lap 2.  I simply closed my eyes and pedaled as hard as I could.  I was laughing, long and hard, as we shredded trail at a speed probably close to double what I would have achieved on a single bike by myself.  Bill is a much better rider than I, and I had learned early on to just trust him and hold on.

"Yee-haaaw!"  I screamed as we descended, worry-free and loving the tandem.


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