Free Verse Friday: The Future

08.16.2013 | 8:11 am

A Note from Fatty: I will be traveling for work all next week, and won’t have time to write this blog. I’ll be back August 26. ‘Til then, just remember: You’re my very favorite reader of all time. 

The Future
I remember Charlie Brown
Talking about post-Christmas letdown
Or maybe it wasn’t Charlie Brown
It could have been someone else
It’s beside the point

I never really
What that was all about
Even as a child
When Christmas was over
I was glad
Because Christmas trees make me
Acutely aware
Of my utter lack of artistic ability
Witnessed by
The way my sisters
Would take down the ornaments
I had put up
And put them in new
More artful

But now
I think I understand
What Charlie Brown
(or whomever)
Was getting at
Because the Leadville 100 is behind me
And the dieting
And the training
And the obsessing 
That I poured into this objective
Suddenly seem pointless
I am at loose ends 

But lo!

I am just kidding!
Because that race
Is in reality
A somewhat short race
Comparatively speaking 

Compared, that is
to the two
– Yes, two –
Much bigger
And longer
And quite frankly
Scarier races
I am planning to do
In the near future

Salt to Saint
A 420-mile relay
From Salt Lake City
To Saint George
Which I am not
– alas –
Doing as a relay
Instead I shall ride it
As if to prove a point
On September 20

But I have not revealed all

25 Hours in Frog Hollow!
An extraordinary race
On an extraordinary MTB loop
Near Saint George
Over the time change
Hence the name
Which is somewhat gimmicky 
But who am I to judge gimmicks
Because the race is awesome
And I am registered
To race it solo
On a singlespeed
November 2

But I have still not revealed all
Not even close, really

Thank you. 



  1. Comment by ClydeinKS | 08.16.2013 | 9:01 am

    Many thanks to my very favorite work place distraction (and motivator to do good things!!). The events sound very appealing, getting some pointers and coaching from the QueenofPain, maybe for Frog Hollow? I’m thinking these will be some great write-ups and am looking forward to hearing more.

  2. Comment by Scott | 08.16.2013 | 9:27 am

    2 person RAAM? RAW? solo????

  3. Comment by DrBryce | 08.16.2013 | 9:38 am

    Ride Forest, Ride!

  4. Comment by AKChick | 08.16.2013 | 9:56 am

    You and the Hammer just getting warmed up to come up to Alaska and participate in the Fireweed 400 solo (I’ll be your crew!!!) and then you’re going to come back after you both get your awesome 9Zero7 fatbikes and ride in the Susitna 100 or maybe you’ll just ride all the way to Nome. :) You probably want to wait until you’re empty nesters to do that one. I will get you two up here one of these days. :)

    @Mike in Melbourne – I just found out that my sister-in-law will be heading to Perth in a year for 3 months training to become a midwife. If her plans don’t change, we might just come down for a visit – not that we’d really impose on you, but we would definitely drive to see you and we’d have to do a Fatcyclist bike ride down under! Who knows, maybe by then, we’ll become long distance Fatty pals and we can host you and you can host us (ever been interested in visting Alaska?). I wonder how much it would cost to bring my CX bike…. :)

  5. Comment by bikemike | 08.16.2013 | 10:01 am

    A bird in the hand
    Is worth the time it takes
    To make sure
    The iron is unplugged.

    Charlie Brown grew up
    And changed his name to
    George Costanza but that is
    A moot point.

  6. Comment by GenghisKhan | 08.16.2013 | 10:21 am

    @bikemike, as the kids would say, “Mind Blown”! I never realized that George is Charlie, all growed up!

  7. Comment by Doug (Way Upstate NY) | 08.16.2013 | 10:30 am

    Elden, after spending this week gimping around I have a whole new level of admiration for what you did last year with Leadville and Breck back to back. I could barely make it up the gondola in Beck much less up anything on my bike.

    Good luck with the rest of the races. I’m looking for something “fun” out east to finish off my summer.

  8. Comment by Bill H-D | 08.16.2013 | 11:35 am

    Tour Divide?

  9. Comment by ChinookPass | 08.16.2013 | 12:11 pm

    Wow Fatty. This is a bit of a paradigm shift. Best of luck. Won’t be easy but you’ll get through and come out the other side with some great stories and a new perspective on riding. That TT rig will see some miles I would imagine.

  10. Comment by MattC | 08.16.2013 | 12:51 pm

    Wow…ur finally gonna do a 24 hour race solo…on a SS! THAT is a serious event…can’t fathom riding my bike 24 hrs. And then the Salt to Saint solo? So that means you’d be riding and riding and riding, sleeping a tiny bit here and there, doing every leg yourself? (Sort of like a mini RAAM solo entry?

    Gosh Fatty…you do have big dreams! Good on ya…I’ll thoroughly enjoy reading about these newest challenges! You’re quickly becoming one of THOSE GUYS…(guys who win races…household names in the cycling world).

  11. Comment by Corrine | 08.16.2013 | 12:59 pm

    Wow, totally exciting. Definitely a new challenge. I’m just happy to take it easy for a few weeks before cross country ski season starts. I haven’t even started thinking about winter goals yet. You guys rock! Good luck!

  12. Comment by UpTheGrade SR CA | 08.16.2013 | 1:12 pm

    Will you be at Levi’s Gran Fondo in between those events?

  13. Comment by Mark in Bremerton | 08.16.2013 | 3:54 pm

    Wow! (I think that’s been said before) That’s taking it up a few, uh, notches. I’ll bet you’ve got great support lined up, you’ll need it. Epic, fer shur!

  14. Comment by Heidi | 08.16.2013 | 4:19 pm

    Dearest Fatty
    I can’t help
    but think
    you’ve lost your
    ever lovin’ mind.
    Can’t wait to
    read about
    the grand adventures
    that await.

    Thank you.

  15. Comment by Guttersnipe | 08.17.2013 | 7:36 am

    South Africa is the place for you. For starters:
    The former is a great journey, the latter is bigger and blinger, both are properly long.
    Or there’s the Cape Pioneer, or the Lesotho Sky … we could go on and on and on, and we often do.

  16. Comment by Louutah | 08.17.2013 | 8:07 am

    OT….Does anyone else think Fatty puts on a hairpiece and has a side job as an CBS news contributor named Charlie D’gata?? he has been seen several times over the past week broadcasting on the goings on in Egypt.

  17. Comment by Davidh-marin,ca | 08.17.2013 | 10:46 pm


    Surprised you haven’t talked about your ‘new’ bike. I assume Scott has you on the list for a demo, and with all the kids I can only assume you ‘camp’. Don’t know if you have to supply your own ‘Airstream’, but I’m convinced after only one ride, your Quads will attain a size previously unimaginable.


  18. Comment by Jill Homer (@AlaskaJill) | 08.18.2013 | 12:17 pm

    My boyfriend Beat is also racing 25 Hours of Frog Hollow solo singlespeed this year. Even though mountain biking isn’t necessarily his thing, he likes singlespeed because he tells me it’s “more like running.” I told him he’d be racing directly against Fat Cyclist this year and he groaned. We’ll see you there! :)

  19. Comment by Daddystyle | 08.19.2013 | 8:31 am

    Next level Baby

  20. Comment by Susie H | 08.19.2013 | 11:35 am

    I believe
    might be
    my favorite Friday Free Verse
    of all time.

    Thank you.

  21. Comment by MattC | 08.19.2013 | 11:35 am

    David…WHERE do you find all these pictures? Aren’t you supposed to be working at some point in the day?? (just curious).

  22. Comment by Davidh-marin,ca | 08.19.2013 | 10:02 pm

    @MattC I might ask the same of you posting at 11:35 am on a Monday Morning. But I won’t because I do know about the crazy long hours you put in prepping those satellites that circle overhead keeping an eye on us…. Wait a minute. I’m not sure I still like you. (?)

    As for the Ibis 59er I saw a card stock photo of this at the LBS. Check the link and read the story. Local NorCal artist crafted the whole thing in STEEL. Needs a Forklift to move it, but would make an awesome lawn ornament in Fatty’s front yard, and waaaay more conversational than his jersey photo:
    (picture it rim high in snow)

    Lastly, despite my penchant for brevity in commenting I still subscribe to the old notion of a picture being worth…..something

  23. Comment by Ellecina | 08.19.2013 | 11:09 pm

    Fatty, sorry to spam the comments here, but when I read Alpine, Utah, I thought of you and your blog. I came across news of a girl from Alpine that’s been missing, she is 16 and her name is Indica Huddleston; the information is true, and more abouth her disappearance can be found both on Instagram, Facebook and here
    Maybe it can be helpful if the word can also be spread to the other Fatty lovers.
    Still sorry for the spamming comment! Bless you and all this community.
    (Btw I am Italian, I live in China, I’ve never been to the USA, I don’t ride but have been loving your blog for a while already. And well I come from that Italian part where we have great Dolomites and nice sections of the Giro, every year. Welcome to visit anytime!).

  24. Comment by MattC | 08.20.2013 | 6:10 am

    @David…we (they/them?) are only watching ‘the bad guys’, right? I figure if ‘they’ want to watch me/listen to my calls/read my emails, then ‘they’ are REALLY bored. And I mean REALY REALLY bored. Like shoot themselves in the foot to get out of watching me bored. To ‘they/them’ I say “Knock yourself out, have a ball, go crazy”.

    And HEY! Just a bit over a week before launch (hopefully) and I get my life back! Woo-HOO!

  25. Comment by rob w | 08.20.2013 | 8:09 am

    Hey Fatty…you mentioned that in Salt to Saint solo, you wanted to prove a point. I am interested in what that point is.
    You are a mad man!! :)

  26. Comment by SLL | 08.20.2013 | 10:52 am

    Three words: Trans Iowa Master.


  27. Comment by Charlie Brown | 08.20.2013 | 7:48 pm

    First… Not George! Grown up is relative I suppose.

    Second… withdrawals from no more racing…

    Third… Grand kids make up for the withdrawals

  28. Comment by Charlie Brown | 08.22.2013 | 6:34 am

    Fatty and hammer = lead people?

  29. Comment by Doug (Way upstate NY) | 08.22.2013 | 10:17 am

    David, how bout a campfire story while Elden is at work? :)

  30. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.22.2013 | 12:05 pm

    Okay team Fatty peeps since our fearless (and very svelte with awesome quads) leader is working for a living this week, I have a quick “just for fun” poll on going clipless for the first time. Curious how it went for people overall and no names are attached to it – no worries! And yes, this is because I just took the plunge myself – largely thanks to ClydeinKS!

    Here’s the link to the poll:

  31. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.22.2013 | 12:20 pm

    @doug ….. you’re killing me! It’s David’s last day off for the week today and has a honey do list as long as one of Fatty’s “recovery” rides!

  32. Comment by Davidh-Marin,ca | 08.22.2013 | 12:25 pm

    Well, clearly now is not the time to ask about going for a ride . :-)

  33. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.22.2013 | 12:34 pm

    @David… I’m thinking I should start posting the honey do list here in case “shaming” may be an effective tactic, and everyone is used to our public banter by now anyway.

    I absolutely think you SHOULD go for a long, beautiful ride and set a bunch of new PRs on Strava…. Just as soon as you measure for Rune’s new door and install Sage’s new bike rack (or tell me I am okay to outsource it). :-)

  34. Comment by ClydeinKS | 08.22.2013 | 8:15 pm

    @Wife#1 (that’s hard to write with MightyAthena sitting right here LOL but she doesn’t post much so guess I’m good)sorry to influence but I believe you asked first, so glad to hear the transition has gone well for you, where do you fit in the survey? The only question that matters though is has the change helped with the pain? Hope you realized immediate benefits!

  35. Comment by Davidh-marin,ca | 08.22.2013 | 8:31 pm

    While the Nelson Family, and we wait for Fatty to return from his latest business ‘junket’ we’re left to our own devices this week. Some of us have become so ‘lost’ they’ve opted for running as an activity (I’m calling you out YannB)

    Wife #1 tweeted a ‘poll’ today about clipless pedals.(she made the transition just last week) Zeeter, Fatty, and Clyde in KS, have all had their experiences posted on Twitter:

    I invite you to take her poll. I think you’ll enjoy it and we’ll all have a smile remembering our ‘best moments’ in clipless:

    Then compare your position with the 84 other respondents so far.

  36. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.22.2013 | 9:32 pm

    @ClydeinKS…. 5 rides now and so far no falls. However I think that’s due to my being extra cautious (aka chicken). I do expect to fall in a grand fashion soon, but I suspect at this point, it will be when I least expect it, which will be just as soon as I have gained a level of confidence.

    The other benefit is that I feel much less like a total poser riding in the cycling shoes on my beloved Hakkalugi Disc than in my walking shoes with the big ole orthotic soles. I could just see people shaking their heads as they passed me “what a waste of a good bike”. :-)

  37. Comment by Davidh-marin,ca | 08.23.2013 | 8:35 am

    Fatty’s back.

    I now know more about my iPad
    than I thought possible….

    and that’s just from the table of contents:

  38. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.23.2013 | 9:55 am

    Friday fun… here are the poll results about when people started riding clipless. :-)

  39. Comment by Tom in Albany | 08.23.2013 | 1:09 pm

    Mr. Nelson held back on his Bio. NOWHERE does it mention his credentials as a World-Famous Blogger and serial Yo-Yo Dieter! See for yourself..


    And Fatty, the glasses make you look really smart!

    Have a great weekend, all!

  40. Comment by Tom in Albany | 08.23.2013 | 1:11 pm

    OK. So follow the link in Davidh’s most recent post and then click on the author bio…

  41. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.23.2013 | 1:33 pm

    I’ll try too for you @Tom, though maybe the site is set up to prevent horking images. I wish we could preview our comments… here we go… will it work?

  42. Comment by Davidh-Marin,ca | 08.23.2013 | 3:16 pm

    As you can see I am a very lucky man to have found a ‘personal tech’ expert, who can also bear children, and put up with me. X’s and O’s to you honey!

  43. Comment by MattC | 08.23.2013 | 4:16 pm

    Rats, I can’t get to the clipless poll from here at work (it’s another LONG day)…I will tell you the story (cuz I have another hour to go and I’m now bored for the first time today). I wasn’t road biking when I learned…as I was only a MT biker back then. I think mt biking adds something extra to the learning curve of fun…cliffs, rocks and such.

    I’d been riding them for a week or 2, feeling quite smug about everybody ELSE’s falling stories. Riding w/ my little bro, on a very technical trail w/ giant yucca’s on the uphill side of the twisty singletrack turns (very narrow singletrack…if you veer off the trail on the downhill side you will most likely need a helicopter resuce for your body)…so you either take the yucca hit on the right shoulder, or die going off the trail (if you’ve never rode around/into a giant yucca…the tips are pointy like you won’t believe…by the end of that ride I had about a dozen good bleeding holes in my right shoulder). NOT a good trail for a newbie to go clipless.

    On one section (I’d made it past the yuccas) there was some pretty-big rocks, making sort on a very narrow S turn thru them. I was in the middle of them when I got stuck and tried to bail out. My left foot (downhill side) somehow unclipped, and was flailing about in mid-air doing NOTHING for my predicament (that I was about to fall off the trail down the steep bank into death). Not yet having the ‘heel click’ manuever ingrained into my a routine move, I’m desperatly trying to force my foot straight back/out of the pedal (which everybody knows doesn’t work) the last second before I tetered off the edge my heel must have gone out far enough in my blind-panic and I clicked it out, and JAMMED it straight down onto the trail to keep from falling. Note here: I had JUST had the bike shop install new XTR cranks/rings. As I jammed my foot down to steady myself (right in front of the right crank) I found out how sharp those new rings are. Sliced the back of my calf open pretty badly…about a 3″ vertical gash.

    And as we had been climbing and riding pretty hard, my legs were gorged w/ blood…it looked HORRIBLE…the gash was opened up wide, bleeding profusely. My little bro calmly whips out some butterfly bandages AND a little disposable razor out of his camelback (no shaving of legs for us mt men), and he closed it off as best he could. Never did get stitches (he had lots of butterfly bandages in his condo)…and strangely it healed pretty well, not nearly the cool scar I was expecting. I was so freaked about almost falling over the edge that it didn’t even hurt…for a while. I think I was shaking the whole while he was bandaging me up. Don’t think I had any more issues after that one. And now it’s like seatbelts in the car…feel naked without them. Can’t imagine NOT being clipped in.

  44. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.23.2013 | 5:20 pm

    @MattC… wow, just wow! I’ve been far more worried about the public humiliation aspect. Didn’t really think much about actually hetting hurt.


    But now can we talk about your little brother cycling with a razor? What’s up with that? I am sure I’m about to learn it’s common practice amonst the hardcore cyclists but now all I can imagine is you and your bro sitting at the edge of a lake after a long ride, lifting your legs to shave each calf and then comparing for silky smoothness.

  45. Comment by Jack | 08.23.2013 | 9:01 pm

    Good luck with the relay!

  46. Comment by Davidh-Marin,ca | 08.23.2013 | 9:53 pm

    @jack. Should we wish him ‘GoodLuck’? He’s only doing one part, and the part that he is BEST at.

    If The Cyclist ’swam’, The Swimmer ‘ran’, and their ‘ringer’ Runner ‘rode’ (not Lisa btw) then Good Luck might be in order. We’d also get a FABULOUS blog post from such an effort. Hmmmmmm?

    But Fatty, seriously, good luck!

  47. Comment by MattC | 08.24.2013 | 6:48 am

    @Wife#1…he carried that little disposable razor so-as to be able to field-shave any area that would need field-bandages (smart! If you’ve ever put a bandage over hair, you rue the moment it has to come off). He also carried a little vacuum sucker thinggy that has various size cups (for snake/insect bites/stings). I’m the only one to ever use it…had a wasp go down my jersey, got stung on my back 8 times before I killed it (by almost killing myself..jumped off the moving bike and was rolling/tumbling along the trail). He whips out this little kit and was all giddy that he finally got to use it…hurt like the devil (he was chuckling, saying things like “you big baby”), but the next day the welts were gone…pure miracle (I don’t do well w/ stings…the welts get worse for the first 2 or 3 days, last a week or more of pure pain)…I now own 3 of them, one goes along w/ each bike inside my little seat-bag (used them a few times..I seem to be the only one geting stung strangely enough). You gotta be prepared!

  48. Comment by Davidh-marin,ca | 08.24.2013 | 9:29 am

    @MattC Just for you DavisLiveSTRONG 2014:


  49. Comment by Wife#1 | 08.24.2013 | 11:44 am

    @MattC… not sure I’m completely buying it but it’s a damn good yarn. :-)

    Does this aversion to welts mean you don’t to check out our beehives when you come borrow Stumpy?

    You have to admit, this is a whole new level of sexy when it comes to being “kitted up”! *snort*

  50. Comment by MattC | 08.25.2013 | 7:51 am

    @ Wife#1…Bees and I aren’t on speaking terms…they’d rather sting me and die than live it seems…(and they apparently talk, spreading the word to find me).
    Here’s a pic of my suction sting/bite thinggy (I only carry the plunger & one cup big enough for a standard sting):


  51. Comment by MattC | 08.25.2013 | 7:53 am

    Argh…I used Fatty’s “add images” link, but it didn’t show the pic…rats.

    I’ve had it suggested to me that I should be wearing that beekeeper ‘kit’ when I ride (thou not to jink myself, but haven’t been stung yet this year…however my miles are WAY down this year there is that).


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