Friday, July 27, 2012


It's been several weeks since I rode in the Huntsman 140, and I still haven't written anything here to follow up on the event. Alas, too often I allow for the daily things of life to interfere with things.


I want to thank everyone for their outstanding support, and for the financial contributions. And thank you to the wonderful support teams that helped cheer everyone on, fix flat tires, and in general, just added moral support.

The ride was a wonderful experience, and I'm very glad that I choose to go through with it. In the process of training, I learned a number of things about myself, and there are a few things that I'd like to write about in the future here.

A few years back, I underwent a great deal of preparation for an event which never took place. Afterwards, I was talking to one of my friends, and they asked if I was disappointed that the anticipated events had not materialized as I had hoped they would.

I told her that while I was disappointed, it was all okay, because I had emerged on the other side of the experience a different person than I was before. The changes from that event are still present in my everyday life today.

The most transformational changes in our lives come about when we embark on a task that requires our mental, spiritual, and physical focus at once. These are the events that challenge us to draw on what we already know and understand in each area, but then require us to reach outside of ourselves for more knowledge and understanding. Often times, before these events, we are not receptive to more knowledge, but the very nature of task we undertake seems to have a way of stretching us enough that we will be willing to look for more.

The Huntsman 140 was an event like that for me. Fifty miles would not have been enough. Seventy-Five would not have been enough, but 140 was. While perhaps it was not an earth shaking experience, it was one of those experiences along the path that changes the individual in subtle ways.

Friday, June 15, 2012

One piece...

Tomorrow I will be riding in the Huntsman 140 bike ride starting in Delta, Utah, and finishing at the doors of the Huntsman Cancer Institute on the University of Utah Campus. This has been a quite a journey for me, and it all started with a friend telling me that I ought to do it. At the time, I don't think I really realized what it would take, or where it would take me.

During my training the last month, I've learned a lot of things about me, and I've had some insights into my life. I've found some pieces.

When I started preparing for this ride, it was really just about the challenge to myself. Could I really do 140 miles I wondered? Tonight, I'm still wondering. One Hundred and Forty miles is Fifty Four miles farther than I have ever gone in one ride. I'm intimidated. I'm even a little scared. Even just this last Monday, I was considering doing only the 75-mile portion of the ride.

But in the last three days since I actually registered, and since I started to fundraise, a few things have changed. I'm still riding to see if I can make it. I'm riding to push myself, and to prove it to myself. I've begun to think of it as my own little 2012 Olympics.

But I'm also riding for cancer now. I'm riding for the people that are sick, the people that have struggled, fought, and learned life lessons from the illness that they have. I'm riding for those that lost that battle, and those that won.

When I was about 11, my brother’s wife was diagnosed with Leukemia. I remember when everyone was talking about it. I remember when she came to visit shortly after the Chemo treatments, how she had short, short hair. And then I remember when the cancer came back, and she died. I remember standing there in the room when they closed the casket, and I clearly remember the finality of that moment. Sadly, it was only the first time that I would experience that finality.

I remember reading lots of articles about cancer when I was younger. For some reason, they always struck me.

And when I watched the movie Shadowlands, it sparked a deep fear inside of me. A fear that one day that story could become "Mylands". A story where I would find someone, only to lose them to cancer or some other such disease.

Even just a month or so ago, one of my cousins succumbed to cancer herself after a hard struggle. She was about 22 years old.

So there you have it. Yes, we can learn from cancer and the experiences that it brings into our lives, but I think it's also worth the struggle and effort to find a cure. The struggle towards a way to relieve the suffering that it brings to so many people. And certainly, it is worth the struggle to find better, more mild  treatment methods.

Today, I went down to the Huntsman Cancer Foundation offices and just walked around for a few minutes. Then I went over to the Hunstman Cancer Institute and walked the halls there for a while. I wanted to see what sort of organization I was riding for tomorrow, and I wanted to see what I was asking people to donate to. I was impressed, and pleased. If I had cancer and I was going in for traditional medical treatments, I don't think I'd want to go anywhere else.

In the various waiting rooms that I wandered through, there were jigsaw puzzles for people to work on. How Ironic, I thought to myself. I sat down for a minute long enough to find an edge piece. Yes, it was just one piece, and an easy one at that, but I put it in and left it done for the next person.

One less piece for them to find...

Thanks to those who have donated to the Huntsman Cancer Institute, and have supported me on this ride. If you still would like to donate, please visit this link:

This photograph was taken by, and is used with the permission of Kimberly Barlow.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Heads up everyone, it’s a magic day today!

And it is also the anniversary date of this blog. I started it on this date, four years ago.

A lot of things are different for me then they were back then. And yet a lot of things are the same. I'm wondering if some of the wrong things are different, and if some of the wrong things are the same.

I took the long way home today. It wasn't because of this date, or because of this post. It just sort of happened. I stopped by the old house where my mother grew up. I'm not really sure why I did that, but I did.

Then I drove through the old neighborhood where I grew up. I stopped at the Barnes and Noble, bought a tea, and walked over to the old Library that I used to go to as a kid.

I left there and I bought a cookie at the Paradise Bakery down the street. I stopped and looked around inside there for a minute, because I wrote a couple of my blog posts from that location.

And then I drove to the park in Sandy that I've been going to for years. I hiked up the mountain and sat there while the sun set. I've always loved parks. When I was a kid, maybe five or six-year’s old, I used to tell people that I wasn't Alma, and that Alma had gone to the park.

Some days, I feel like telling people that now.

"I'm sorry sir, Alma isn't in the office today. That's right, he has gone to the park."

It's a tempting thought. Maybe I’ll try it sometime . . .

Things are a lot different in life then they used to be, and things are a lot different now then I expected them to be four years ago. I'm not entirely sure what I expected, but they are different.

Two thousand eight was really an amazing year, for us as a nation, and personally for me.

Two thousand nine and beyond? Well, it's been interesting the last couple of years to say the least. For everyone.

I suppose that everything is cyclical. That's the nature of things. A lot of us had plans, hopes, and dreams. We thought that we knew where we were going and what we were doing, but things changed for a lot of us.

I too, had lots of plans, hopes, and dreams attached to the creation of this blog. Those ideas never really worked out like I hoped they would at the time. Maybe it's for the best, or maybe not. I don't know yet.

I haven't been behind the camera much the last couple of years. That in turn has contributed to less blog posts. We'll see what happens in the future. It needs a re-design, and a re-focus.

I took this image today at the park. It's pretty simple, but it means a lot to me, and it's the best one I got during my walk.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

After the storm...

My good friend Morgan just announced that she recently got engaged. This is very happy news, and it just makes me smile.

I worked with Morgan back during the "glory days" of my cabinet sales business, before the economy began to suffer. The company she worked at was a great client for me, with a great team of people all working together.

Altogether, it was a wonderful experience, and I'll always think back and have fond memories of the group of people that were in the company at the time. I think that most of us enjoyed the experience, and I feel like we had a lot of success.

Alas, we take the storms with the sunshine, and most of us are doing different things now.

It's the hard things in life that help us grow, and those same hard things make the good times that much more meaningful. Without the perspective, we could never appreciate the good things in life.

One day a couple of years ago, I talked with Morgan after she had just gone through a painful breakup. I remember how devastated she felt at the time, and how I tried in my feeble way to encourage her.

They say that when one door closes, another opens. I suppose that if you could ask her, she would tell you that she has grown a lot in the last couple of years, and that this relationship is much better for her.

Life turns around.

It has for Morgan. Nothing stays bad forever, and while sometimes it's hard, and sometimes it hurts, that's okay. Learn what you can, and look toward a better day, because sooner or later it will come around.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Why ask for more . . . ???

Quoted from The Alchemist:

"...He was selling better then ever, as if time had turned back to the old days when the street had been one of Tangier's major attractions . . . "Business has really improved," he said to the boy, after the customer had left. "I am doing much better, and soon you'll be able to return to your sheep. Why ask more out of life?"

So...Why? Why should we ask more out of life? As long as we have food to eat, clothes to wear, a place to sleep that is warm and dry, and an adequate social experience, shouldn't we just be content with that and be happy?

"Because we have to respond to the omens," the boy said . . . "Because life wants you to achieve your personal legend . . . "

It's very easy as humans to become content and complacent in our situations. When we have our needs met and we are comfortable, we often tend to "go to sleep" physically, mentally, and emotionally.

But deep inside us, a small something wants to emerge, a small something that whispers to us that we can be, and do, more.

That small something will only be silenced at a cost, and a very high cost at that.

I'm not talking about asking for more money.

I'm not talking about asking for more stuff.

I'm talking about increasing your "expression in the world" as David Allen says it. And I'm suggesting that the best way to do that, is to follow that inner voice that tells you what that expression should be, and how you should begin to achieve it.

Chances are that you’ve put it to sleep. But that's okay, because you can still wake it up again, but you have to start listening, and then start acting on what it's telling you. You have to be willing to follow "the omens."

Scary? Of course it is, but then, there’s no real living without risk.

And that's the topic of my next post . . . .