Since LAB membership gets me a copy of Bicycling, I usually read it. At least scan it. Sometimes its not worthy of being put, perforated, on a tube of cardboard, since the pages are too glossy. Sometimes there is real journalism in it. This issue contained the real thing. Hence this letter to the mag.
Dear Editors at Bicycling
Every once in a while, your magazine prints a story that drops the usual offerings like a fat guy on a Category I climb. This month's (March, 2009) piece by Steve Friedman "The Impossible Redemption of Jonathan Boyer" is one of them. Like "The Invisible Riders" by Dan Koeppel that you ran a few years back, such work goes beyond the surface stuff and unearths realities that go to the heart of the human condition, which, as that famous cyclist once reminded us, "its not about the bike".
I suspect that like many others, I wrote Jock Boyer off to the scrap heap of history after his arrest and conviction for violating one of our more fundamentally held prohibitions. Fortunately, people like Tom Richey, Judge Meyer, Dan Cooper, and Jock's close friends did not. Fortunately, Steve Friedman has given us a deeper understanding of Boyer. As has Jock's involvement with Project Rwanda.
None of us are as bad as the worst thing we have ever done, nor as good as the best thing. We all hurtle through life on metaphorical skinny, high pressure tires; a badly timed blowout is not out of the question for anyone. I wish Jock Boyer well. Redemption, after all, is the best possible outcome of a run-in with our criminal justice system.
The picture above is from an article "Measured Redemption: The Life and Times of Cyclist Jonathan Boyer". Please go read it so I can justify cockroaching* their picture.
* "cockroaching": Hawaiian, pidgin english for pilfering something (don't bother with the def. in the Urban Dictionary)