Saturday, 4 February 2012

all day, all night

It's been a while since i added another installment to my long series of "stupid things James does". I've decided to remedy that this week, having scanned the San Diego area for bovine threats and come up with nothing and dismissed the idea of swimming with Shamu. I've decided to take on a new challenge. And no, i'm not talking about the spontaneous colony of bacteria and yeast which is currenlty festering it's way into a delicious beverage in my kitchen. Although i think they might be the most twittered about microorganisms on the planet. I've gone and entered a 24 hour mountainbike race. in 2 weeks. Did i mention that i don't own a mountainbike?

now i do have some previous with long, solo races and anyone who was at sea otter will recall my glorious "oh shit the brakes on this bike aren't the sides i'm used to" cartwheel. rapidly followed by my "oh shit i'm in road pedals and i'm actually STUCK upside can you please roll me over my course marshal" experiences in the fat tyred world. That said, i think it will all be OK because, well, it normally is, right?

(ADDENDUM; i just watched 24 solo, great film, now i'm really really scared)

Tomorrow the MTB training begins, thanks to kerry i have a top of the line pronghorn MTB to ride, thanks to Scott i have a lift thanks to gordon i have the brakes the correct way around, a good espresso in me, a jar of embrocation and one of the best friends a boy could have on this side of the pond. Oh and thanks to emily, i have someone to keep me sane in between now and then.

Whilst we're ont he subject of people who've helped me, i got the chance to help someone myself the other day. Dan,s car had broken down so we pushed it into velohangar and i drove him home. I realised just how nice it is to be able to do something for someone. i also found straight up the best coffee in the county at Revolution roasters.

anyway more importantly the trip to Arizona gives me an opportunity to do what i like doing most (apart from amateur bullfighting and eating) 'betes advocacy. Arizona has some pretty serious political issues, not leats its provision of healthcare. i don't want to get into public policy again but suffice it to say you shouldn't be broke because your sick or sick because your broke. and you certainly shouldn't be TAXED because you're sick.

In the USA in general and certain parts of it in particular, diabetes advocacy doesn't tend to speak Spanish (with notable exceptions). because in general, speaking Spanish doesn't pay the piper. Seeing as this piper didn't get paid anyway, it's my desire to help my brothers and sisters' with my condition however i can, in whatever language i can. A big issue that I'm trying to conceptualise a plan to deal with is the lack of brotherhood between diabetics over the world. i share a lot more with a diabetic in Malawi than a non diabetic in Milwaukee or Middlesbrough. And yet, we don't see people getting together to donate supplies to the people in Africa and South america who are often testing less than once a day (sadly this is also true inside the USA). This year i plan to try to do my bit to change that, everywhere i go i want to meet people and talk to them, to see what they need and how i can help. I'm fortunate enought o get to travel to race, and i want to leave more than a hole in the ozone layer a result of that travel.

I'll be logging my experiences in Arizona, both riding through the night and speaking in the day. As illustrated above, people are good, they want to help each other. nobody leaves someone suffering when they can see it, we just need to extend that notion to people we can't see. hopefully some of these stats will help you see a little more clearly what we're playing against
http://www.worlddiabetesfoundation.org/composite-35.htm
http://www.diabetesmine.com/2012/01/important-things-to-know-about-diabetes-in-the-developing-world.html


until next time - i have 3o papers to grade and my red pen is already running low. stay safe, ride fast and be nice

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