Friday, August 31, 2007


This is a little off of the Amish, but only by several degrees. Local bike racing phenom and Tour de France winner, Floyd Landis provides a unique snapshot of "plain community boy meets western culture" in his book "Positively False". It's co-written with Loren Mooney.

It was easy to spot a Mennonite kid at the
public high school where I went, because we were the quiet ones in whatever
plain clothes our parents could find for cheap- completely outside of the world
of teenage fashion.

We pedaled up in sweat-pants, t-shirts,
and sneakers on our three-hundred-dollar bikes. Everyone else had bike shorts
and jerseys, biking shoes and three-thousand-dollar bikes.

"I don't know," I said to Eric one day.
"Do you think God really cares if I wear shorts?"

By being the best junior in the
country, I earned a spot on the U.S. team going to the World Championships in
Metabief, France.

Race day, it was pouring rain. The
guys who did well were the ones who were best at jumping off their bikes and
running when the mud got deep. My bike didn't have the right tires to race in
the slick mud, and I was exhausted from being out of my element. I finished
last. Not just in the last group of riders, but dead last. I started crying
before I even reached the finish line. I just wanted to go

Even though my parents and I don't see
things the same, I believe that our way of thinking are far more similar than
they are different. We both believe in honesty, fairness, kindness, and hard
work. Those are the important things, and I wanted my mother to know that I
understood that.

Buy the book and support his efforts to hold the governing bodies of cycling accountable.
Plus it's a good read!

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