Next Time, I Swear

07.24.2009 | 1:31 pm

A Note from Fatty: Susan continues to have some lucid periods, followed by some very scary and difficult times. We’ve adjusted her meds, however, so that things are generally better: when she’s lucid we can enjoy it, and when she’s not I have tools at my disposal to help her be calm, or if necessary, to sleep. Her circumstances haven’t really changed, but we’re adapting and making them as easy as possible for her and the kids.

I’ve talked about Tibble Fork before. It’s my favorite trail in the world. Lots of good memories associated with it, and it’s where I first learned to hate — then eventually love — climbing.

But I didn’t have video of it.

So, knowing a small group of us were going to ride it this morning, yesterday afternoon I put fresh batteries in the helmetcam and tested them to make sure they worked. They did.

Then, this morning, I made sure I took the lens cap off. Because, you see, I am becoming very smart about using my helmetcam.

I put the helmet on, then turned the helmetcam on.

Or, more precisely, I pressed the “On” switch for the helmetcam, after which nothing happened.

No, that’s not precise enough. Something did happen. Immediately upon pressing the “On” switch, I realized that after turning on the helmetcam yesterday to make sure the new batteries were good, I…left it on.

Which means that I still do not have any video of my favorite trail in the world. Which is too bad, because it was a really great ride. Great trail, beautiful views, terrific friends. It — I know I have said this an embarrassing number of times now — would have made a very good video.

Next time, I swear.

Meanwhile, here’s the group photo Dug took at the bottom of the trail for his writeup of the ride.


You know why I look so happy?  Because I’ve just done 2500 feet of descending. And because I am enjoying my personal space.

Oh, and also because I have enormous quads.


  1. Comment by Beth | 07.24.2009 | 1:35 pm

    And enormous quads are something to smile about… at a time friend….;)

  2. Comment by dug | 07.24.2009 | 1:36 pm

    meanwhile, i was enjoying BRAD’S personal space.

  3. Comment by BellaCroix | 07.24.2009 | 1:41 pm

    Good to see a smile. No matter what, you have to remember to find a way (any way) to smile – hopefully Susan’s got a many more honest-to-goodness smiles left in her too.

    … I hear it really pisses cancer off when people smile.

  4. Comment by TomE | 07.24.2009 | 1:56 pm

    We ALL know why you are not sharing the video of Tibble Fork. If it is as good as you say, you don’t want to rub it in…thanks Fatty!!!

    WIN SUSAN!!!

  5. Comment by Kathy McElhaney | 07.24.2009 | 2:07 pm

    Your forgetfulness is excusable considering the important things you ARE remembering these days. Glad to see a smile.

  6. Comment by Heidi | 07.24.2009 | 2:14 pm

    Why yes, your quads ARE enormous!

  7. Comment by UphillBattle | 07.24.2009 | 2:15 pm

    Are those quads for real or are the photoshopped?? MAN!
    Glad that you had a some happiness!

  8. Comment by Biking to Beat Cancer | 07.24.2009 | 2:25 pm

    Those quads look leadville ready!

  9. Comment by Annie | 07.24.2009 | 2:25 pm

    That’s really funny, because I read Dug’s writeup first, and I noticed your quads. I’m not much of a quad-noticer. Glad you had a great ride, despite the dead batteries in the helmet cam.

  10. Comment by Ant | 07.24.2009 | 2:52 pm

    So – those knicks. Is the stitching line supposed to be straight, and they’ve been bent and warped out of shape by the walls of rippling muscle underneath?

    Or are they perhaps a little curved, just to ‘accentuate’?

    Of course, I know it’s Option #1.

  11. Comment by geckonia | 07.24.2009 | 3:06 pm

    I am quadenvious! Looks like a great group of guys you ride with.

  12. Comment by Hamish A | 07.24.2009 | 3:11 pm

    Awww, Guy love is a beautiful thing. And Fatty, kudos on the quads! The smiles say it all.

    Prayers for Susan, you and the Kids.

    WIN! And keep smiling. You’ve got great friends, (and no Dug, I don’t need a hug ;-) )

  13. Comment by keighty | 07.24.2009 | 3:14 pm

    I actually looked at the picture before I read the post and thought, “Elden’s legs look pretty amazing.” I then planned to say something about it, but you beat me to it. That is what we call a healthy dose of narcissism in the therapeutic world.

  14. Comment by Melody | 07.24.2009 | 3:16 pm

    I never realized how happy quads could make someone. Learn something new today- check. ;)

  15. Comment by Heather | 07.24.2009 | 3:42 pm

    So, can I borrow those enormous quads for my race next weekend? : )

    Keeping you and yours in my thoughts and prayers.

  16. Comment by Clydesteve | 07.24.2009 | 3:50 pm

    The quads are OK.

    Been a while since you have had a helmet on in a cycling pic. Ashamed of your nerdy helmet cam? Don’t be. In the end, the nerds win.

  17. Comment by Jennebelle | 07.24.2009 | 4:03 pm

    You legs look awesome! Congrats!

  18. Comment by drKim | 07.24.2009 | 4:05 pm

    You should check out She has a ‘large quad’ theme going….you’d win!!!!

  19. Comment by Lizzylou | 07.24.2009 | 4:08 pm

    You’ll be pleased to know that I noticed the enormous quads before you even mentioned them.

  20. Comment by Rusty | 07.24.2009 | 4:23 pm

    Did you photoshop those quads!!! Holy Crap I’m jealous.

  21. Comment by Kathleen@ForgingAhead | 07.24.2009 | 4:24 pm

    You have Mark Cavendish-like quads. Very impressive.

  22. Comment by L'Hippo | 07.24.2009 | 4:26 pm

    Methinks you have quad implants. Look at that backdrop! you’re killlng me… Would this blog be so popular if you rode around Lubbock, Texas all the time?

  23. Comment by Pam | 07.24.2009 | 4:50 pm

    Yep, the first thing I said to myself on looking at that photo, “Holy crap! Look at those legs!”

  24. Comment by Kt | 07.24.2009 | 5:01 pm

    Weird… the first thing I noticed was the man-hug occurring to the left, and only noticed the quads when you pointed them out to me.

    Sounds like you had a good time!

  25. Comment by bikemike | 07.24.2009 | 5:02 pm

    you loook mah-velous.

  26. Comment by Boomer | 07.24.2009 | 5:03 pm

    what model camera do you use or can the friendly folks here point me in the right direction? thanks.

    (and this dude does not look at other dudes’ quads (eyes straight ahead at all times))

  27. Comment by Angie G | 07.24.2009 | 5:24 pm

    I see a little Fatty Flexing going on. :-) It sure worked! As a current climb hater, I am quite jealous of those monsters.

    Bet it’s hard to find jeans that fit those babies.

    Along with everyone else, it’s great to see the smile.
    Have a great weekend!

  28. Comment by Anonymous | 07.24.2009 | 5:33 pm

    Hey man…you got a shout out from Levi

  29. Comment by PennyPue | 07.24.2009 | 6:03 pm

    Love all the testosterone going on that in that pic!!

  30. Comment by susan | 07.24.2009 | 6:05 pm

    you continue to amaze and inspire me. you’re all in my heart, and will stay there with me on my ride tomorrow. don’t ever give up the bikes.

  31. Comment by Born 4 Lycra | 07.24.2009 | 6:27 pm

    Oh Quads!!! I thought you said you had enormous ……… oh never mind.
    Looks like a lovely day out in the back garden in Utah.
    Love to Susan WIN.

  32. Comment by Jamieson | 07.24.2009 | 7:00 pm

    Glad you got to ride and there is some help you have found for Susan.

  33. Comment by Philly Jen | 07.24.2009 | 8:46 pm

    Go, go, Quadzilla!

    (Get well soon, Levi!)


  34. Comment by cloud19th | 07.24.2009 | 8:55 pm

    cheese and donuts! man, I am intimidated by your legs!
    It’s a good thing you can’t suck them in like people can suck in their stomachs ;-) ride proud of yourself!

    Kisses to Levi!

  35. Comment by Carla | 07.24.2009 | 9:02 pm

    Ok – disappointed no helmet cam footage – 2 – glad you had time to yourself – 3 – it is the lighter striping on the spandex cycling shorts that makes your quads look big. LOL enjoy each day.

  36. Comment by Fremont Mike | 07.24.2009 | 9:08 pm

    Good to see you smilng!!! Pease be with you Eldon and family!



  37. Comment by Ravan | 07.24.2009 | 9:21 pm

    Hey, so happy that today was a “good” day for you and your family. I went through something very similar about ten years ago. Actually, ten years ago today my Mother passed away, but that is not why I am writing. I know you like to music while you ride. I find this song to be pretty damn inspirational. You might have to give it a few run throughs before you like it, but I am telling you it will pull you through any hard moment or any hard ride.

  38. Comment by Macey | 07.25.2009 | 12:23 am

    I’m so sorry, I’ve been reading and thinking about you so much, I thought I had commented, but now thinking about it, I guess I didn’t.
    Just wanted to tell you that you are an inspiration, and I pray for you, Susan, and your children. I hurt for you all.
    Know that you have many, many strangers in blog world who are praying on your behalf. That is a powerful thing.
    You also have many good friends who have plead with their followers to pray on your behalf, it is a never ending cycle of sorts.
    I pray for peace and comfort and strength for you all.

  39. Comment by Janneke | 07.25.2009 | 2:24 am

    Well I’m sure there will be more Tibble Fork rides to film. I think under the sircumstances you can be forgiven for this minor error… Just don’t forget to have a good time while/when you can. Oh, and that picture says more than a thousand words… You had fun… Good to have mates who are willing to drop their plans to go out whith you when you call.

  40. Comment by Corey | 07.25.2009 | 9:11 am

    First, make the most of those bouts of lucidity, they are a gift from God.

    You mentioned in a past post that you always had a hard time deciding what ride to do with friends visiting from out of town.
    So how about you keep this trail a mystery and make it the out-of-towner choice!

    And that is some pretty amazing photoshopping, grafting Jill Homers quads onto your thighs!

  41. Comment by Beast Mom | 07.25.2009 | 11:07 am

    “Then, this morning, I made sure I took the lens cap off. Because, you see, I am becoming very smart about using my helmetcam.”


    In the midst of everything, you retain your sense of humor. I’ve decided over all these yrs of reading you that I think I like your subtle, self-deprecating humor best.


    I agree w/ your opinion of Contador by the way. I suppose he feels it’s always under question if he’s The Man or not. Guess he’s out to squash that question. However, that said, it was probably not the best idea for his team to have two stallions in a pen together…part of me doesn’t blame him for kicking up his heels.


  42. Comment by siouxgeonz | 07.25.2009 | 11:20 am

    Your quads are astounding
    Keep the pedals pounding :-)

    Sending good vibes your way…

  43. Pingback by sultry saunter « Urbana-Champaign Cycling Ventures | 07.25.2009 | 11:32 am

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  44. Comment by Dan O | 07.25.2009 | 1:21 pm

    Nice pic – everyone looks happy and glad to be outside.

    Yes – you have quite the quads. No matter how much riding I do, mine remain pencil sized.

    Good luck on the home front and keep blogging.

  45. Comment by Bluenoser | 07.25.2009 | 1:46 pm

    There are always two constants about these pictures Fatty.

    1/ There is always a guy with his legs spread in spandex showing his junk…

    and 2/ a guy with his arm wrapped around him saying, “I love you guy.”


  46. Comment by Heather | 07.25.2009 | 3:01 pm

    This is my first visit to your blog from P-Dub’s site. I’ll be praying constantly for you and your family….

  47. Comment by Nancy | 07.25.2009 | 6:27 pm

    I don’t see a single fat guy in that group. Just quads. You’ll have to change the name to “Skinny Cyclist with Big” Though it just doesn’t have the same cache.

  48. Comment by feline | 07.26.2009 | 1:02 am

    Levi directed me here. You and Susan are an inspiration and I wish you both peace and completion and no regrets. Tomorrow I am going to Golden Gate Park to get on a bike for the first time in 20+ years. You just never know….

  49. Comment by Claire | 07.26.2009 | 6:26 am

    Oh there is some lycra loving hugging it out testosterone going on in that picture. It is good to see you smiling though and you are right your Quads are HUGE.

    I do think we may need to resort to laminating a little helmet cam checklist at some point and placing it somewhere keen and handy. We wanna see the trail!!

    Glad you are getting to share these lucid moments with Susan, still thinking of you all.


  50. Comment by Loren Mooney | 07.26.2009 | 8:20 am

    Thoughts are with you and Susan, Fatty. Enjoy every moment you can, always.

  51. Comment by jim | 07.26.2009 | 9:02 am

    Hang in there. Glad you got to get a good ride in. VERY important to keep your sane. Which is needed clearly to help.

    Definitely will keep you and family in my thoughts.

    good luck.


  52. Comment by neca | 07.26.2009 | 2:34 pm

    You and Susan have changed so many people’s lives. Not just by raising money (which certainly helps people with cancer), but you have changed the lives of your readers. I know you’d trade that all for 1 year of health for Susan (and we’d understand!).

    Levi got it wrong – I don’t think of your blog as heart wrenching. You and Susan have shared with us, andin doing so have changed lives for the better.

  53. Comment by Nina in Ohio | 07.26.2009 | 2:48 pm

    Elden – you have some good mates – that’s great that they are helping you thru this difficult time. Enjoy the rides when you can and I betcha there are a ton of guys out there turning green over those awesome quads! And, yeah, cancer sucks.

  54. Comment by Bryan | 07.26.2009 | 6:25 pm

    I just wanted to tell you that I am praying for you and your wife. My brother in law, as well as mother in law both had cancer. I am very blessed they are still alive. I realize living in Dallas Texas ther is nothing I can do, but if me and my wife can help you in any way please let us know. May God bless you and your wife.


    Bryan and Sara

  55. Comment by Shelley | 07.26.2009 | 10:21 pm

    Because for a moment, you could forget . . .

  56. Comment by Elizabeth | 07.26.2009 | 11:31 pm

    I’m another visitor from Pioneer Woman. {waves} I’m envious: my quads are probably the same size as yours but unfortunately, are not made of muscle like yours! {grin} I’ll have to get my out-of-shape self on my exercise bike in honor of you & Susan.

    You all are very much in my prayers: I pray God will wrap you all so tightly in His love that you have no doubt of His presence, and I pray that He will grant you more precious time with Susan. If tears could wash away cancer, it would be gone, gone, gone!

  57. Comment by Triflefat | 07.27.2009 | 12:20 am


    I just read this on Jill’s site.

    It’s an idea she hatched whilst on the Great Divide race at a time when she was confronting incredible physical and mental challenges. It summarises why she embarks on monumental races like the Great Divide.

    I don’t know if she was thinking of you when she wrote it, but it’s true for you too.

    “Physical fitness is fleeting. Strength is forever.”

    Amen to that.

  58. Comment by Onan the Barbarian | 07.27.2009 | 7:10 am

    Big quads are overrated. It’s how you use them that counts.

    /Quad envy.

  59. Comment by Paul | 07.27.2009 | 7:17 am

    enormous quads are reason enough for celebration.

    win susan

  60. Comment by Dustin | 07.27.2009 | 8:59 am

    Is that an Orange Vassago Jaberwocky?

  61. Comment by Mike Roadie | 07.27.2009 | 9:06 am

    Thoughts, love and prayers.

    I just got back from RAGBRAI and there were many FOFs there. May have gotten some folks to sign up for the Team as well.

    Nice quads!


  62. Comment by Black Rose | 07.27.2009 | 4:12 pm

    I think you should replace Fatty with Quadzilla. Now we know the secret to your climbing.I have a friend who body builds and your quads look alot like his.As a fellow family care giver, you and yours are always in my prayers.

  63. Comment by Erik | 07.27.2009 | 11:01 pm

    You are a better man than I, Fatty. I mean, you kill the batteries two times in your helmet cam, discover it just before the ride, and you’re still not going to swear until next time? I swear I’d have sworn that time if I was in your shoes. You never fail to impress, my friend ;-)

    My thoughts are with you, Susan, and your kids. May there be more periods of lucidity and laughter in the coming days for all of you…

  64. Comment by Graham | 07.28.2009 | 7:08 am

    You are doing what you can and what your doing will make a difference to those near by.

  65. Pingback by Fat Cyclist » Blog Archive » Six Minutes of Joy | 07.28.2009 | 10:28 am

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  66. Comment by Prashant Goel | 08.1.2009 | 4:56 pm

    Love what you are doing with your blog. Very inspirational. Actually, I consider myself to be on the same page as you as a group of 14 of us climbed Kilimanjaro for cancer.

    I have added your blog to my blogroll. Good luck!


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