Monday, October 29

SSWC '18 Bend: Part Four

I wake up at 6:25 AM with some intentions of making the Fuzzy and Co. shuttle ride to places further outta town.  Bill Nye has given me permission to go without him, not wanting to commit to the great unknowns.  I send Fuzzy a text.

"I'm awake.  Text me if this is gonna happen in the next 5 minutes or I'm going back to sleep."

He texts me back at 7:15 AM.

I'm not going.

So now what?

When Bill Nye eventually rejoins the living, we agree to just ride on our own later in the day.  After a couple hours in the prone position eating grocery store burritos and watching HBO, he announces that there will be no riding for him today.


I have just enough time to make the noon ride outta Thump Roastery.  Kit up and check the FB for an address for the meet up.  Roll to the west side of town.  I'm the first one there, natch.

Others roll in, noon creeps up, no one is saying they're the ride leader.  Doubt creeps in...

Someone mentions that the Thump Roastery location on the event website is not the same one that is tagged in the most recent FaceBook and Instagram updates.  A phone call is made...

Yeah, we missed the ride.  Wrong Thump.


I'm all but prepared to head back to the finest Econolodge in East Bend (close to the Walgreens) and eat more grocery store burritos and drink Coors, but one of our group of idiots puts on his big boy pants and comes up with a route.  I follow blindly.

Outta town, up COD, over to Storm King... and to be honest, I dunno.  At some point I see a sign that says were ten miles from the Bend city limits, and I realize that I'm gonna be late for a promised 3:00 PM (ish) return time so that Bill Nye and I could get our grub on before going out into the night.  I bail when I can see the highway at the edge of the woods and ride back with some guy from Clark Bros Racing.

Get clean, meet up with Buck and his compatriots for grubbage...

and then over to the decider competition for the SSWC '19 location.

The "beer line" was a more of a beer mob.  After filling our Silipints the first time, I realize that the beer mob/line is approximately as long as it would take me to finish one beer.  We slip back into the rear of the pack.  The timing was a little off, as we'd entered with 3/4 of a full beer, but after immediately getting back into line, things worked out much better for our third beer.  It was then that we realized if we just ghosted backwards a bit, we'd always be in line.  And so it went until we were five or six in and ready to mingle.

We left the line and found that the decider competitions were just getting underway.

All I can say is that I witnessed the blurring of lines between a fair fight and the interests of a small few and their interests.  Mebbe it's not always like this, but mebbe it is.  I got as close to the action as I could to watch it all go down to be sure.

photo: Abbie Durkee @singlespeedmama
Me, tugging on the ends of my Fu Man Chu deliberating the twisted reality in front of me.

After the quaffing competition (which seemed pretty fair to me), there was a boat building feat of strength.  Each team had a limited amount of time to build a seaworthy boat outta some bike boxes and duct tape, and then it was an out-and-back race in the river nearby.  One boat was suspiciously well thought out, the other, the obvious product of staring at a pile of cardboard and thinking "WTF?"

I'll leave it at that.

I guess this is what democracy looks like.  The Deep State is real.

Bill Nye is smart and says we need to head back NOW.  Big day tomorrow.

Smartest thing we'd done to this point.


Glen Evans said...


Anonymous said...

mmmmm donut holes.

I'm going to be Homer for Halloween.