Let’s Do Something Good Together

11.11.2008 | 8:50 am

I think I’ve mentioned before that for a long time I’ve been considering writing a book. Originally, I had the idea of it being a lot like this blog, but more … ummm … bookish. During the past few weeks, though, what my book needs to be about has become a lot more clear.

It needs to be about you.

Fat Cyclist readers have shown me exactly how good people can be, to people they’ve never even met. The support Susan and I have received from you doesn’t seem at all like a group of random individuals reading something I write a few times per week.

It feels like a neighborhood.

And that’s pretty amazing to me. Definitely something worth writing about. So I’m working on revising my book proposal. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Meanwhile, I think one of the important virtues of a neighborhood is that everyone pitches in when they see that someone else in the neighborhood needs help. You all have done this for me in dozens of ways.

And now I want to do something good, too. Something good for you, and also good in the fight against cancer.

I’m just starting to work out what it is and how we’ll make it work, but I’m pretty sure you’ll find it a fun way to join your neighbors in doing something really good.

I’m excited, and that’s a nice change right now.

I’ll explain soon. Tomorrow, hopefully.


  1. Comment by rz | 11.11.2008 | 8:56 am

    Ooo, I’m excited too.

    I hope its about food and cycling. Yum

  2. Comment by Fremont Mike | 11.11.2008 | 8:57 am

    You’re such a tease! I would love to be able to participate.

    Count me in.

    Mike Jones

  3. Comment by Paula Kirsch | 11.11.2008 | 8:59 am

    Just let us know what we can do neighbor!!


  4. Comment by neca | 11.11.2008 | 9:02 am

    Glad your inventive nature has allowed you to make some improvements that help Susan. As always, love & prayers and I can’t wait to hear what you’ve come up with!

  5. Comment by Bluenoser | 11.11.2008 | 9:15 am

    Count me in.


  6. Comment by Wendy | 11.11.2008 | 9:16 am

    Can’t wait to hear.

  7. Comment by Weiland | 11.11.2008 | 9:23 am

    Neighbors eh, does this mean I can borrow your power tools?

  8. Comment by Jeff | 11.11.2008 | 9:24 am

    I’m all a-twitter with anticipation!

    You should have included this in your “Interbike preview” blog tips. When you’re going to do a contest/event/big thing tease it a bit first so that people will be CONSTANTLY checking back to see what you’re planning!

  9. Comment by Sprite's Keeper | 11.11.2008 | 9:31 am

    I’m intrigued in both the book and the cause!

  10. Comment by M2 | 11.11.2008 | 9:32 am

    Great idea! Since I started following this blog I’ve been amazed, and moved by the sense of community, the caring and the generosity of your readers.

    Thank you!

  11. Comment by BurkeInTheOzarks | 11.11.2008 | 9:35 am

    Okay, my curiosity is piqued!

  12. Comment by 331miles | 11.11.2008 | 9:36 am

    Always ready to do something good! Can’t wait to find out what it is…

  13. Comment by regina | 11.11.2008 | 9:38 am

    such a tease! i’m in.

  14. Comment by Don | 11.11.2008 | 9:38 am

    You rock Fatty! You, Susan, your kids, your family, all amaze me! I can’t wait to hear what my favorite neighbor (about 3500 miles away) is planning!


  15. Comment by Shannon | 11.11.2008 | 9:38 am

    I’m excited too. Count me in!!!!

  16. Comment by judi | 11.11.2008 | 9:38 am

    Can’t wait to hear what you are talking about.

  17. Comment by Nix | 11.11.2008 | 9:40 am

    He, Ken Williams made a book out of his blog, so why not you? He kept a blog during a transatlantic crossing with some other Nordhavn yachts, that blog has been put into print and I really enjoyed reading that.

    Yahoo, another contest, hope this time I win. Perhaps even the famous sportsbeans!

  18. Comment by Flatman | 11.11.2008 | 9:41 am

    You da man, dude. You know we will do whatever you need… :)

  19. Comment by bikemike | 11.11.2008 | 9:42 am

    pins and needles are what we’re waiting on

  20. Comment by GenghisKhan | 11.11.2008 | 9:47 am

    I like the neighborhood concept–friendly, helpful, concerned. Perhaps title it, “The People in My Neighborhood”.

  21. Comment by Kathleen | 11.11.2008 | 9:48 am

    I so get what you mean about neighborhood…I get up, make my coffee, open my laptop and come here to see what you are up to and how Susan is feeling. And then I meander through the rest of the neighborhood seeing what your readers have to say. And *then* I wind up following some of *their* links to nearby neighborhoods. Love it!

  22. Comment by moabmedic | 11.11.2008 | 9:49 am

    I’m in! let me know what you need.

  23. Comment by rich | 11.11.2008 | 9:53 am

    sounds awesome – I’m in. Let us know what you need….

  24. Comment by Arthur | 11.11.2008 | 9:54 am

    I’m excited too… partly because your superfly is taking shape in the most amazing of ways!!

  25. Comment by montanapat | 11.11.2008 | 9:55 am

    Mr.Fatty’s neighborhood. I visit everyday.

  26. Comment by Barb | 11.11.2008 | 10:17 am

    The flip side of your neighborhood analogy is that you have let US into your lives in a time that most people shut themselves in. Thank you for allowing us to hold you up. We have all learned about our better sides.

  27. Comment by Anonymous | 11.11.2008 | 10:22 am

    I will be very happy if I can inflict the “People in Your Neighborhood” song from Sesame Street on another FC reader and get it out of my head.

    Now back to your regularly scheduled FC blogtalk:

    I’m looking forward to see what you come up with.

  28. Comment by Shiny Flu | 11.11.2008 | 10:32 am

    I’m in too, but no Paparazzi please… the remnants of my cycling tan doesn’t photograph well :P

  29. Comment by Charisa | 11.11.2008 | 10:33 am

    Ohhhhhh fun! Exciting and glad to hear you are excited as well!

  30. Comment by MikeonhisBike | 11.11.2008 | 10:36 am

    Oh great! I’m so excited I won’t be able to sleep tonight now. I can’t wait.


  31. Comment by Clydesteve | 11.11.2008 | 10:37 am

    Umm, Fatty, could I prune your ornamental maple tree, please? the branches hang over the fence, and it’s shedding leaves all over my lawn..

  32. Comment by Marla | 11.11.2008 | 10:45 am

    Hi neighbor:)

  33. Comment by Di | 11.11.2008 | 11:04 am

    :-) I have warm fuzzies, now. :-)

    I, like Kathleen, enjoy browsing through the comments and checking out other people’s blogs. I’ve read some pretty amazing stuff. It really makes me feel good to find blogs from people who are very spiritual and are very positive, even though they may be going through something that can be life-shattering to many.

    It is a pretty cool community. :-)

  34. Comment by justrun | 11.11.2008 | 11:09 am

    That is a great idea, and just goes to show how all our stories really weave into one another. I’ll support your project any way I can!

  35. Comment by jonni | 11.11.2008 | 11:12 am

    Oh Fatty, you have done so much for me and the neighborhood. What else could there be? Oh, OK, I can’t wait. Thanks

  36. Comment by victoria | 11.11.2008 | 11:13 am

    I would love to help out in whatever way I can– your blog (well, really, your blog plus all the people who comment on it) has shown me how much love there is in the world, and that people are so much more giving and generous and helpful than the media and the rest of the world would usually have us believe.

  37. Comment by Hamish A | 11.11.2008 | 11:31 am

    Awesome, Fatty has a plan! I think it’s pretty safe to say we’re all going to be onboard to help out however we can.

    On the book front, I’m more than happy to volunteer typing services should you be a dictaphone kinda guy.

    WIN Susan!

  38. Comment by Jaime O. | 11.11.2008 | 11:35 am

    ohhh How fun!

  39. Comment by Emily | 11.11.2008 | 11:44 am

    You want us to copyedit and index it, don’t you?

    Well, ok neighbor– and you know if I was closer by, I’d be bringing over a casserole once a week.

  40. Comment by Mark | 11.11.2008 | 11:47 am

    Sounds really positive and cool. I’ll be interested to see what you come up with…

  41. Comment by anji | 11.11.2008 | 12:07 pm

    Hi Fatty,
    I’ve decided to write a book too and it’s just in the planning stages… it’s called (Re)Discovering Humanity. I’ll be travelling around without an itinerary, and seeing where my travels take me. I hope to meet ordinary people, who have had extra-ordinary things happen to them through the kindness/benevolence of others. Would you be up to being a chapter in my book? I definitely see you’ve been touched in exactly the way I hope to write about… :)

    You’re right… i’ve seen an amazing community come together here… you’ve definitely been blessed!

  42. Comment by BellaCroix | 11.11.2008 | 12:23 pm

    Neighbor, hu? Sounds a little too much like that creepy Mr. McFeelie is going to be coming around the house again after I finally got him to stay away and scared off that owl by cutting down his tree.

    Any chance you know someone who wants to buy a grandfather clock – good condition – only one cat?

  43. Comment by g | 11.11.2008 | 12:50 pm

    Hi Fatty. There used to be a link or button on your site that you could use to donate, but I don’t see it any more. Is there still a way to donate directly?

  44. Comment by Kristi | 11.11.2008 | 1:00 pm

    We would love to help in any way we can!
    Kristi (from Texas)

  45. Comment by Andrea | 11.11.2008 | 1:55 pm

    I’m in! I love a writing project and anything written by Fat Cyclist is bound to be great.

  46. Comment by Kt | 11.11.2008 | 2:07 pm

    Awesome! Count me in, too.

    I am also one of those people who have found some really great blogs out there by clicking on your commentors’ links. What a world, what a world! :) Meant in a good way, of course.

    Thanks for sharing your journey with us, Fatty and Susan and chilluns. I hope it’s made us better people.

    WIN SUSAN!! :)

  47. Comment by Al Maviva | 11.11.2008 | 2:10 pm

    Probably oughtta count me out, unless you’re doing some sort of updated version of Helter Skelter crossed with 12 Angry Men, with a dab of American Flyers thrown in as garnish.

    I was considering writing a book too, but with the obscenity laws being what they are, and all, I don’t think it would work. Do you know how much a good First Amendment lawyer costs per hour? #%&@loads, that’s how much. That’s what the bill says anyhow.

  48. Comment by Mike Roadie | 11.11.2008 | 2:19 pm

    WOW!!! I can’t wait!!! I hope it is something we ALL can do together. Hey, Thanksgiving is coming….ummmm Pumpkin Pie?????

  49. Comment by FliesOnly | 11.11.2008 | 2:31 pm

    I am giddy with excitement.

  50. Comment by Lisa B | 11.11.2008 | 2:51 pm

    Does it involve eating? And perhaps cycling? If so, I’m in. I’d be all over a “Eating for Susan” fundraiser. Tho perhaps naming it differently would be the first action item …

  51. Comment by winner27 | 11.11.2008 | 3:24 pm

    What an awesome neighborhood! I can’t wait to hear more!

  52. Comment by RosieRider | 11.11.2008 | 3:34 pm

    Don’t know if you care, or if it’s relevant, but there’s another “strangers become neighbors” story in the outpouring of net support for a blogger, Nie Nie, who was, along with her husband, almost died in the crash of a small aricraft. it got some national coverage, etc., and is easy to find on the net.

  53. Comment by Trail Dog Craigers | 11.11.2008 | 3:36 pm

    I can’t wait to hear what you come up with Fatty. Glad I waited till now to check your update. Now I’m in a good mood again.

  54. Comment by Ed T | 11.11.2008 | 3:36 pm

    I have the utmost respect for you and all the readers of Fat Cyclist. It is good to see the goodness of people though your efforts and kindness. Blessings to Susan and your family. It is like Christmas came early !!! Oh Yeah.

  55. Comment by KC | 11.11.2008 | 3:56 pm

    You continue to amaze me!

  56. Comment by Heatherann | 11.11.2008 | 4:58 pm

    You have me most intrigued! I can’t wait to hear your idea. Good luck with your book, you deserve some happiness.

  57. Comment by carey | 11.11.2008 | 5:19 pm

    I only started reading your blog a few weeks ago…please know that you and Susan are in my thoughts and prayers.

    Looking forward to finding out what exactly your “cooking” up! :)

  58. Comment by Jenni | 11.11.2008 | 7:01 pm

    Ok, but please photograph me from the right- that’s my good side.

  59. Comment by leon | 11.11.2008 | 8:13 pm

    if you consider someone who lives halfway around the world a neighbor, count me in


  60. Comment by Co | 11.11.2008 | 9:09 pm

    Dear FC: I’m not the neighborhood type (more like the recluse type), but I help where I can and I assure you of this: your book will be whatever it will be (not what anyone thinks it “needs” to be), and will do endless good because you have a good heart. Go for it!

    Your beloved wife will always be . . . your beloved wife! (beloved mother, beloved daughter, beloved sister, beloved colleague – always beloved in every role!) Neither my beloved father nor my beloved brother (who pre-deceased my dad) have ceased to be beloved; it is inconceivable that my beloved Stuart will ever be anything else even if he should pre-decease me; and so it will be for you and yours. God Bless!

  61. Comment by Penny | 11.11.2008 | 9:47 pm

    I’m eagerly anticipating finding out what I can do to help out my neighbor!

  62. Comment by Tim E | 11.11.2008 | 9:51 pm

    Fatty -

    Let’s see if I’ve got this straight…In the middle of everything you’ve got going on in your life, what are you thinking about? Helping others. No wonder your neighborhood id full of people who want to be there for you!

    Looking forward to seeing what new amazing thing you’ll come up with!

  63. Comment by Kristen | 11.11.2008 | 10:02 pm

    If you post a picture of you in a cardigan changing from bike shoes into your “house shoes” (by tossing from one hand to the other)I just might spew milk out my nose :).


    As a often reader who lurks more often than not – thanks for letting us into your neighborhood!

  64. Comment by pammap | 11.11.2008 | 10:10 pm

    Speaking of neighbors…Al Maviva’s comment so reminds me of Oscar the Grouch. You just gotta love him! :)

    waiting with the rest…

  65. Comment by Tony | 11.11.2008 | 10:19 pm

    Can’t wait to hear what you’ve got planned. You are so much more creative than I am, and just about everyone else I know.

  66. Comment by Phil | 11.12.2008 | 12:05 am

    Please make the book a combination of Cookbook / Grizly Cycling Injury stories.

  67. Comment by Lisa | 11.12.2008 | 1:12 am

    I can’t wait to see it. Aside from loving to read your blog and your thoughts, it’s been very interesting to watch it become the great social experiment that it is. I’m sure the book will be an amazing reflection of the spirit of this community.

  68. Comment by buckythedonkey | 11.12.2008 | 4:24 am

    Welcome to my neighbourhood. You don’t happen to have a Campag cassette lock-ring tool that I can snarf, do you?


  69. Comment by Kristen | 11.12.2008 | 5:30 am


    Can’t wait to participate! The anticipation is unbearable! :)


  70. Comment by Bjorn 4 Lycra | 11.12.2008 | 6:15 am

    Fatty which one is Al’s place. If he won’t come to the neighborhood we’ll take it to him.
    Al mate after Team Fatty you are about the most popular bloke on here the neighborhood will not be the same without you.
    This sound’s interesting even for us on the other side of the neighborhood pond. Looking forward to more info.

  71. Comment by 4get2remember | 11.12.2008 | 6:51 am

    I’ll totally buy the book!

  72. Comment by Adamant | 11.12.2008 | 7:23 am

    I’m hoping its a mass indoor century for charity like you did this past January. We can all do an indoor century on rollers or a trainer, solicit donations to LAF, and have a great time doing it.

    If this is not your idea, oh well. Maybe I will organize it, as I’ve always wanted to do a century on my rollers. The T-shirts would be hilarious.

  73. Comment by Carolyn Online | 11.12.2008 | 7:39 am

    I am – as always – amazed at your capacity to see outside of yourself.

    Good luck. Oh, and loved the improvements to the hospital bed. Wish I had thought of the camelback drink bottle when we needed it. Brilliant.

  74. Comment by Sara | 11.12.2008 | 8:40 am

    “if you consider someone who lives halfway around the world a neighbor, count me in”
    same here!


  75. Comment by Donald | 11.12.2008 | 8:48 am

    Can’t wait… Looking forward to the fun and joining in!

  76. Comment by Dr Codfish | 11.12.2008 | 10:45 am

    I read your post yesterday and I’ve been thinking about it ever since.

    I think I can relate in some small way to what you may be thinking. Though it was nothing compared to your circumstances, our experience put me back on my heels for a bit.

    Our house was flooded about a year ago. Remember that flood last December that blocked I-5 up herer in Western Washington? The Chehalis River made a mess of the small town of Centralia and interrupted interstate commerce for a week or so. Well, we’re down river from Centralia so we go what they did and a little more.

    Though I have plenty of bad memories imprinted in my brain (we were out if the house for 4 months in the rebuild) what outshines all that is the seeming endless collection of memories I have of people pitching in: Offering to help, offering us to stay in their homes, collecting money to help us, cooking meals, doing our laundry, paying our hotel bills (anonymously) and more, much more.

    In my life I have honed the art of skepticism to a fine point, but this experience really caused me to reevaluate my assessment of people. I know we have the capacity to do unspeakable evil or perhaps just as bad: not to get involved, to look the other way and walk on by when there is someone in need. My little social experiment last December proved to me, beyond any doubt whatsoever that people are good, are stronger than any natural disaster, and will without provocation, threat, or possibility of reward rush to the aid of people in need. My inner Do Rickles has been cut down to size. He lurks there ever willing to pipe up with a hearty: ”See, I told you so!” but that is no longer my dominant chord. It’s there but I know from real life experience that people are good and they will help in times of need.

    I’ve struggled with how to adequately pay back. ‘Thank you’ of course just seems soooo inadequate. I’ve hosted our helpers to summer BBQ’s and sent thank you cards but have come to the conclusion that the only meaningful way to pay my dept of gratitude is to look for opportunities to help others.

    Of course it would be perfect to be able to come to the rescue of each and every one of those who lent us a hand, but absent that I now look for situations where I can help those in need regardless their relationship to me. Strangers are just as eligible for assistance as my friends and benefactors. Strangers helped me.

    I’ve sent a few shekels your way, and I’ve also upped my contributions to the LAF just because I am sure there is plenty of need and they are doing a very good job of directing their resources as far as I can tell.

    Not to get too political but the recent election of Mr. Obama has caused me to think that it would be a mistake for me to sit back and hope or expect that things will get better now. I believe that if we all respond to the call to service in whatever small way we can that the prospects for a stronger, healthier country are increased. Words are inspiring but actions are believable.

    I don’t know what you have in mind but I’ll be watching for ways I can help.

    YR Pal Dr Codfish

  77. Comment by Nein | 11.12.2008 | 11:03 am

    It hasn’t all been a one way street. We’ve gotten a lot of great things back from you.

    1- The ‘homework’ you gave us a few weeks back really hit a note with me.

    2- You remind me of all the people out there that don’t have support and need it. And more importantly, you provided an easy way to help out financially though the links on your site and your various ‘contests’.

    3- You’re attitude really serves as a daily reminder. I don’t care if that sounds cliche.

    4- You get excited about cycling. And that gets me excited about cycling, which usually translates into me riding to work 4 or 5 times a week.

    So thank you.

  78. Comment by Speedbuggy | 11.12.2008 | 12:12 pm

    I’m as giddy as a little school girl.

  79. Comment by Rufus | 11.12.2008 | 2:41 pm

    Do we get to wear button-up cardigans?

    Kidding aside, Fatty, you’re amazing…thinking of others when you’ve got so much going on yourself. Quite commendable. And talk about a perfect time of the year for this. The holidays can be such an odd/difficult season for so many that the thought of 1) being part of a neighborhood, and b) reaching out to help others, just brighened my day immeasurably. Sign me up!

  80. Comment by Kris | 11.12.2008 | 4:34 pm



Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.