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Jul 31

Am I A Whack-A-Doo Too?

by in Ontario

Distance: 171km
Time: 6:45:21

I’m standing in the circle of eight of us listening quietly (some of you can’t believe it, but I’m actually very shy). The first guy, 21 from Toronto, is telling a story about a descent he took on his single-speed fixed gear bike he’s using to go across the country (west to east). The second guy, 28 from Victoria, knows better than to try to top the story so instead starts talking about something to do with his favourite porn star. The old guy, 57 from Halifax, tells me later that he has to get back to Halifax before October because he has a sea-kayak expedition to do. When asked about schedule all seven of them laugh it off, “No, I’m a free-spirit, I just get to where I end up.”

This is how I started my day, the collection of cross-Canada cyclists gathered together outside of Velorution bike shop. For most of the conversation, I’m thinking, “These people (two girls) are all whack-a-doo.” Then they ask me about my schedule, my daily goal, etc. In which three of them reply, “Wow, that’s crazy,” in unison. Hold on, I’m the crazy one?

As I rode today, on a beautiful day from Sault Ste Marie to Serpent River, the question keeps rippling through my mind, am I a whack-a-doo too? And I come to the realization that yeah, I am.

What follows are some of my thoughts today:

1. I’m not one to complain about pavement, however, going 20km on “grooved pavement” is crazy. Thank you to the Township of Tarbutt and Tarbutt Additional (seriously, this is the name of the township. I don’t even understand the additional part. It makes me die with laughter thinking they wouldn’t let the folks from Tarbutt Additional just be from Tarbutt, but I digress) for giving me that sacred hour of cycling.

2. I decided halfway through the ride that businesses that advertise how far they are by minutes (KFC – 10 minutes ahead) will no longer receive my patronage. I broke that rule when the campground I was headed for did it. The next campground is 30km away, give me a break.

3. I rode for an hour along Hwy 17B through Garden River and Echo Bay, thanks to a suggestion from a friend, and I was passed by a total of three cars, in an hour. For someone who has been riding the Trans-Canada for days, this was bliss.

4. I’m always interested in who gets recognized by a town on their sign. You know, Sault Ste Marie hometown of Roberta Bondar, Dryden howetown of Chris Pronger,
Marathon home of Kris Wirtz, but none have made me smile as much as the native community of Garden River hometown of Jordan Nolan of the LA Kings. Almost every house had a sign saying, “Go Jordan” or “#71 LA Kings”, almost all of which were sheets of plywood spray painted. So cool!

5. As impressed with Lake Superior as I was, Lake Huron is no slouch of a lake. It’s an easy place to stop for lunch.

Lake Huron for lunch.

Lake Huron for lunch.

I’m into and through Sudbury tomorrow, on my way to Ottawa for the weekend.

And so, it is my statement henceforth, that I realize and accept my whack-a-doo status.

Ride on.

4 Responses to “Am I A Whack-A-Doo Too?”

  1. From Henderson:

    The first time I heard the phrase “Wackadoo” was in the musical I assistant directed a few years ago, The Boyfriend. From then on, it became a term I couldn’t wait to use. I use it weekly, if not daily. Thanks for incorporating it into a title! I got my attention. Ride strong. Stay safe!

    Posted on July 31, 2013 at 2:06 am #
  2. From jp:

    Glad to hear that you are almost in the home stretch Scottie. The Saucy Royales are behind you 100%. You can do it.

    Posted on August 2, 2013 at 4:22 am #
  3. From Paul Shinkar:

    That’s my new name for you!

    Posted on August 3, 2013 at 1:57 pm #
  4. From Kevin OReilly:

    Scott, welcome to the “Whack-a-doo” club. There are many, many more members….but most have not realized it as yet. Welcome to your realization.

    I could have told you sooner because I recognized it in you when we first met and you were planning the “Strip-The-Streets-of-Youth-Homelessness” event….to sleep outside in late February…with dozens of students. That is WHACK-A-DOO in CAPS! Sorry I didn’t tell you then. It seemed so obvious to me, that I was sure you already knew.

    Once we realize that we are members, life becomes a lot simpler. It explains why we see the world so differently. Whack-a-doos are so “out-of-the-box” that we often didn’t know a box existed in the first place.

    The exciting news about being a Whack-a-doodle (that is the user-friendly name) is that people who see things differently are the ones who effect change. We can’t change others, but we can change ourselves. and in doing that others see the good in the change…and then change themselves. In the short time that I have known you, you have affected positive change in many people, in many ways.

    Maybe we can start an official club and get t-shirts printed???

    Ride on Oh Whacked One!

    Posted on August 4, 2013 at 5:12 pm #
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