Sunday, August 12, 2012


I now share something with quite a few of the Tour de France riders this year—a tack that caused a flat tire. Mine, unfortunately, also caused me to crash. As I was finishing a 30-mile ride on Tuesday evening, I turned left onto Apex Peakway going about 20 miles an hour. I did what I normally do—I turned my wheel and leaned into the turn. Rather than turning, my tire slid out from under me, I hit the pavement, and the person behind me ran into me as I slid across the road. 

I later found this thumbtack in my tire. A front tire that is flat or has low pressure doesn’t give the necessary traction to facilitate a turn and thus led to my crash.  Other than some bruises (including a nice tire imprint on my right butt cheek) and some road rash, I am fine. The other rider messed up his chin, but did not get any stitches and is fine as well. Our bikes were unharmed and we rode together again on Saturday.

As I was tipping over and starting to slide, I remember thinking, “Not again!” and “Why me?” I was mad at both myself and the situation. I felt rather put upon. I also felt bad that I had caused someone else to be hurt. Generally, I was feeling pretty sorry for myself.

As we grabbed a bite to eat afterwards at Rudino’s, the wife of the guy who crashed into me said something like, “It could have been worse.” That was scant comfort, but I had to admit she was right. Over the next few days, I thought about what she said while listening to folks jokingly call me clumsy and recommend that Susie take out more life insurance on me.

Should I have been more thankful that nothing serious happened? Or, depressed that this stupid thing had happened to me? While a few bruises and scrapes are not that big of a deal, the principle applies to much of life. Pollyanna or Eeyore?  

Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 – In everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Folks often seem to think Paul is saying be thankful for everything, but that is not the case. He is not telling me to be thankful that I crashed, but to be thankful that the consequences were mild.

Going back a little farther in the chapter and including verses 16 and 17 yields these commands – Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks. Those are three things that I find hard to argue against. I need to do a better job of incorporating all three into my daily life.

No, I am not Pollyanna. But, I do have MUCH to be thankful for. I will concentrate on being more aware of those things.

Besides, the crescent-shaped bruise on my cheek is sort of attractive…

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