Pedaling to the Beat of Arthur Ashe’s Motto

Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can ~ Arthur Ashe

Between Cedarburg, WI and Port Washington

My good friend Gary Greer wrote in comments to one of my Bike to End Division posts words to the effect of “aren’t there ways of raising $12,000 for a good cause (in this case, West Town Bikes) that don’t involve screwing up your foot?”

The short answer is “I hope so!”. But wait! Then you go on to say:

As a FORMER cyclist I know full well that no external goal is needed. 

And that’s the nubs of it. I love testing my mettle. In a good year, I would ride a metric century on a weekend just for the doing of it. That’s plenty. Yet there are people to my astonishment who have ridden around Lake Michigan, camping the whole way, just for the heck of it! That’s 1000+ miles.


It turns out for a ride of this magnitude I needed the extra umph of an “external goal”. There’s nothing like having a couple of dozen people, friends, family, well-wishers, and devotees to the cause, cheering you on and marking your progress as contributions daily mount.

Your point is well taken. There’s some soul searching in my future, Gary. That’s all I can tell you.

I can also tell you that I was supremely motivated by the Arthur Ashe quote. I had admired it for the longest time. It came winging back to me in the midst of the final days of preparation. It made me sooooo… happy to think of it. It seemed so apt. And it’s exactly what happened. I started from where I was (the front door of my condo building!), I was using what I have, a bike and some legs that like to spin in circles, and I did what I could.


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