Today I talked to two close friends today and had one of those reality checks only real friends will give you. The first conversation was about racing, the second about writing.
On the subject of riding, I am way behind in bicycle racing fitness. I know it sounds cool that I rode 5000 miles in Iraq and a total of 7000 miles last year, but nearly all of it was what racers call "junk miles." I rode to and from work on base. I rode ten-mile laps around the base, but never pushed myself in the way that riding with other racers pushes me.
Anyway, I told my friend about having the PA Senior Games as my goal for the year and the National Senior Games as my goal for next year. He thought that was a good plan. Between the reduced amount of training I do compared to before deployment and the "year off" riding in Iraq, he was sure there was not much chance I would be competitive in licensed races anytime soon, maybe not for years if at all. Comebacks are not easy at 57.
A few hours later I talked to a good friend who is an excellent writer. I said. "Maybe I am wasting my time riding 10 or more hours a week to get back in shape when I have the opportunity to write a book." He asked me what I could get from a book. Clearly not money. Every author I know personally writes for money to supplement their incomes. Then he talked about audience. He reminded me that the people who most admire what I did want me to stop talking whenever politics comes up. And the people who agree with my politics think I am certifiable for going. He's right of course. If I had a Big Idea, maybe, but for right now I just have a title and a lot of stories.