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Bike Riding 101

bikeSubmitted by Tron Mason

There he was. This little guy standing in the middle of the driveway dressed as a warrior. His helmet decorated with the illusion of fire, his armor shining steel blue in color and tightened around his elbows and arms. He was ready! Oh wait... "Tighten up your chin strap." Ok now he was ready! With this however, it seemed his enemy was just as prepared if not more so.

His enemy sat in its own corner displaying its menacing frame and snaring back at him as the young warrior trembled with fear. The armor on his knees knocked almost rhythmically. The beat sounded eerily like Queen's 1980 hit "Another one bites the dust." "Dad, he called out shaken, Do we have to take the training wheels off today? I don't have to learn today, I'm ok - really." It was clear the boy was nerve stricken. Apparently he'd gotten wind of the epic battles his older siblings had with the great two wheeled beast. They had triumphed but not without a battle mark or band aid. These stories, now clearly exaggerated were messing with his psyche...and his stomach. Thinking fast I gave the warrior a pep talk of sorts as he stood on the hot concrete terrain. With his eyes darting constantly and his legs week, what he needed was a dose of courage I thought. "My stomach hurts Daddy" "Keep your wits about you son and take this elixir! It's sure to give you all the energy you need to defeat the beast. It's basically liquid courage - drink up!" I passed him the Chuck E Cheese goblet and he drank boldly from it. When he'd finished he looked different. His knees quieted and he emphatically proclaimed "That's Pepto Bismol Daddy!" I simply proclaimed with a stiff pat on his back, that today...it's the stuff dreams are made out of!

As we made our way down to the asphalt lined battlefield, the suburban warrior continually posed questions to his giggling siblings of how long it would take. My daughter shouted out "Five minutes!" In actuality it had taken her three days, a box of band aids, and two pair of gloves. I remember it like it was yesterday. The child pedaled right into the woods and hit a tree! She sat out the next day. Look, don't judge me - I take full blame! "Lesson one son - "Braking."

I must say people, that was no doubt the hottest day of the year and pushing dead weight in limp armor with a bike up and down the street was exhausting. "Can we take a break?, he said" "Keep pedaling," I replied. "Can you pour water over my head?" "Keep pedaling!" "Will you..." "Keep pedaling!!!" Now about our tenth time up and down the street my own knees were knocking and he could keep his balance when I let go for a second or two. The smile across his face was priceless. The kids snapped pictures and he was on his way. Then he hit "bit the dust!" It seems a quick jerk of the wheel provided him with a taste of the unforgiving terrain. His left knee pad had absorbed much of the enemy blow. I took my time getting there as the beast lay on top of his tangled body and he yelled out. I reached the boy and loosened him from the enemy's "Full Nelson" and "Figure Four" grip. He then looks up at me as if to say...I know - Keep pedaling! Now there you have it friends...That's the stuff dreams are really made of!

To read more please be sure to follow my blog @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com in anticipation for my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Thanks for taking this journey with me and "Keep Pedaling!"



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