Thursday, August 20, 2009

Serving the Underserved

I am off to teach a course at Lee University titled, "Serving the Underserved". In preparing for this class, it has got me thinking (always a bad sign, usually it can be identified by a contorted look on my face and steam coming out of my ears), why, in the richest country of the world, are there still people who are "underserved"? Why, when I walk out of my office door, do I walk by people who are homeless, jobless, and without any support service? Why do we feel the need to look at the government to solve these problems? What happened to the second of the two most important commandments - "Thou shall love thy neighbor as you love yourself"? Even if you are not a Christian, at some level you must agree with that philosophy, right? What are your thoughts? How do we solve homelessness, drug addiction, domestic violence, child abuse, and all the other issues that plague our communities?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times . . . with the bike.

It was an interesting week, on and off the bike. My weekly column for the Cleveland Daily Banner hit a new high, as it was picked up by the AP and ultimately posted on the USA Cycling Website ( in their "Cycling in the news" section, (scroll down to find, "Pushing Pedals can be a Passion . . ."). As a lifelong cycling enthusiast, it was a great honor to get an email from USA Cycling supporting the column AND notifying me that they published a link to my column.
That was the exciting news ON the bike, now the total gaff I made on the bike. I am a little more than 6 weeks away from my AtomicMan event and I need to increase my training for the bike leg. Wednesday night (coincidentally the same night my column ran in the Banner) I rode a monster 42 mile ride through the rolling hills of Bradley County. I did over 5 miles of serious climbing. The ride was awesome, except for one little mistake - I ran out of water. Yes, the oldest rule in the book, drink enough water, and I violated it!
Actually it was a fair mistake, I had a park that I normally fill my bottles at, but because of the length of the ride, the building was closed and I did not have access to the water. I thought I might be alright since I only had about 11 miles to go at that point . . . I was wrong. I didn't "bonk" on the bike, I actually finished the ride strong (averaging 17 mph over the full 42 miles), but when I got home I felt it. I started getting tunnel vision, dizzy, and a little nauseous. My beautiful and UNDERSTANDING wife allowed me to climb into bed at about 8:30 and feed me fluids until I went to sleep. Lesson learned, don't tempt fate on dehydration. Probably one of my most embarrassing moment in the saddle (next to the time that 60 year old woman passed me on the century ride).
As Dickens would say, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times . . ." for me and the bike. I can't wait and see what next week brings!