Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Best Among Us

I'm glad to see you all here tonight. The drinks are all on me, though I don't think they could brew enough to make us forget. But, to forget is not why we Grimpeurs and all the rest have gathered here today. We have come here to remember our friend, Kean Bird.

As the universe is prone to do, either according to some unfathomable plan or through the cold dictates of randomness, it has taken a man before his time. On this day, it was someone it had no business with. Kean was the pinnacle of health, someone you'd refer to when you wanted to emphasize what a strong bicyclist looks like, as in: Damn, you flew up that hill, I thought I was chasing Kean. He was the record holder for the fastest climb up Mud Pike, the true measure of a Grimpeur. Before Kean's pancreas turned on him, he was having his best year as a cyclist. Anytime you checked the standings of a local race, there he was at the top. Sad to say, I really didn't know Kean outside of cycling, I'll leave talk of him outside cycling to those of you who want to say you piece later. I can tell you that there was both joy and fear when he rode up to the courthouse before a group ride. In the meat of a ride, I often found myself squeezing into Kean's slipstream as he mercilessly pounded the pedals. He could hear me wheezing and grunting and he loved the sound of it. He'd take me to the limit and I'd see him glance back now and then to make sure he still had me. Sometimes he'd yell something back like, "Stay in your big ring!" Then he'd give a wry smile as he tweaked up the pace. Kean would put you through hell but he'd always be there at the top waiting. He'd never leave you behind now matter how bad you were. Honestly, I was sure that was what he was going to do this time, put himself, ans us, through hell. I can't believe he won't be waiting at the top of the hill.

Anyway, that's enough out of me. Raise your glass, all, to Kean Bird, the best of the Grimpeurs. Now, let's here some of your stories and celebrate the life of our friend we called Aerobinator.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'll drink to that! Nice tribute...

Matt M.