Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Without new stuff, would there be any ambition?

I heard a (fictional) story once about a guy who had started a company, taken it public, and with his fortune retired to a beach in Mexico. From time to time, he would visit a fisherman from whom he would purchase fresh fish. One day he asked the fisherman what he did each day. The answer: "each morning I take the boat out to fish, I come home and sell my fish, then in the afternoon and evening I sit on the beach with my wife and play my guitar."

The fortunate man asked "why don't you buy a bigger boat?"

"What do I need a bigger boat for?" the fisherman responded.

"So you can catch more fish. If you catch more fish, you can make more money. And with that money you can buy more boats. Eventually you'll have a fleet of boats and a large fishing company, which you can then sell and retire."

"What will I do when I retire?" the fisherman asked.

"Whatever you want--what do you like to do now?"

"I like to go fishing in the morning, and then when I'm done fishing, I like to sit on the beach with my wife and play my guitar."

Some people are perfectly content with what they have, and others, regardless of what they have, always want more. I'm somewhere in-between. I'm perfectly content with the home I live in. Happy with my car, so long as it keeps running. Don't own what most would consider a "dream bike," but other than having a power meter, I can't think of any upgrades that I'm dying to have on any of them. Except maybe new tires on the single speed and the road bike. I love my skis and probably won't want a new pair until I finish reading the Powder Magazine gear guide sitting in my bathroom.

As nearly content as I like to think I am, whenever I get something new, I can't wait to try it out. After about six months in my MTB shoes, I realized that they were simply never going to get comfortable because the shape of my foot and the shape of the shoe were just too different. So I took advantage of the wonderful REI satisfaction guarantee and returned them. And with the proceeds, went to my LBS and bought the MTB equivalent of my road shoes.

I wasn't super happy with myself, because I had decided that as long as Specialized continued running ads featuring the doper Tom Boonen, I was not going to buy any of their products. But they are the only company that makes cycling shoes that I find comfortable, so my steely resolve didn't last very long.

Of course this morning, I had to try them out. Rachel and I took the kids to the park, and they played while I made another attempt at the Sidewinder TT on my single speed. I was anxious to top the SS high water mark (one of only two SS attempts, mine being the other), since it was only eight seconds faster than my best time. I doubt the shoes made any difference, but, thanks to new shoes and Smartwool socks, my feet were comfortable. And I took 13 seconds off my time. Which means I have SS bragging rights until Shawn sees that I passed him and tries it again.


  1. c'mon man, cocaine. not epo. not testosterone. cocaine. he's not a doper, he's a recreational drug user.

    i bet he drinks beer too. he IS Belgian.

    how's the relocation saga coming? offer in hand?

  2. "She don't lie, she don't lie, she don't lie...cocaine.

    When you've got bad news, you wanna shake them blues, cocaine."

    -Eric Clapton

    No offers yet. Still working--hoping something comes through soon.


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