My Uncle Mitch

Well, he’s really my wife’s uncle, but that still counts, right?

This guy has a Lyle Lovitt smile, crooked and to the side, and he’s just lovable.   A man’s man, funny, boyish and playful and he just loves Tombstone.   Especially Doc Holiday, played by Val Kilmer.  Awesome.

When I started running, he started biking.   He set an audacious goal for himself; Yellowstone.   As an aside, do you have any idea how important it is to set obnoxiously impossible goals for yourself?   For me, it’s the Boston Marathon.   I’m running about 10 min miles on my long 20 mile runs right now and BQ (Boston Qualifying) for my age group is about 7:45/mile.   That’s just to qualify, and even with that there’s no guarantee I’ll get in.   And how will I afford it?   How can I get there?   No clue.. but still, that’s my audacious goal.   And Mitch?   His was to do this bike trek across Yellowstone National Park.

He did it.   It was tough.  Something he never dreamed of doing until recently and he registered and worked at it.   He trained and learned and experimented.   He had fun and he sweated.   His friends and family rallied around him and we’re all damned proud.   He did it.

And now?

Now he has other goals.   Other audacious goals.   Leadville 100 MTB maybe.

And that’s is awesome.   Mitch is awesome.   He has said that I inspire him, but I’m pretty sure he has that backwards.   He inspires the hell out of me.   We have this dynamic where our excitement of achievement stirs something heroic in each of us; we wake up to something snarling and primal.   There is only the task at hand; nowhere can be found the debate on whether it is or isn’t possible or whether we will fail or succeed.   We will do.   That is all.

If I could somehow be involved in races and events, and those with my wife and my uncle Mitch and all of those I love, until I died – I would go to the grave with the most valuable medal or award one could ever have; I will have truly lived a life worth living.

The person I could have become, will look with envy at the person I became.

Mitch?   He helped me get there.  Thanks buddy!

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