Alright. So when Chip found this thing, we kind of just shrugged our shoulders and said, "sure." I think that if there were any dollar amount attached to T.M.H.T.E., we would have clearly said no. Or at least I would. The word "free" carries with it such weight in our society, that we rarely make the same (sane) decisions when those four letters are involved. When I was a messenger, Sparks, yes the yummy alcoholic gatorade, would have events downtown where they gave out free hot dogs and shitty cookies.
There would be an hour wait, the cue consisting primarily of men in suits and ladies in heels. The 9 to 5 ers making a minimum of 60k a year, would wait, in a line, for a hot dog. Why...well it was a free of course.
So here we go. Its wednesday night, I got most of the packing out of the way. I think. I'm sure we don't have everything. And everything is what is need, because nothing is what is provided. Remember our theme, free. There's camping stuff, sleeping stuff (a waste?), lots of dry bike clothes, jackets, tights, gloves, shoes, helmets, enough lights to make it through a winter night, I mean two, power cords, power strips, inverter for the car, containers for water, lots of food in many different physical states; tasty-crunchy, and quick-n-gooey, bikes, extra wheel from which to scavenge, stan's, tubes, CO2, pedals, items from the required gear list.
Knowing is Half the Battle. What we know. Nothing. There's a blog set up to give race information, but hasn't moved in a while. Part of this is the adventure, and I assume that the less that is known about this event, the more likely it is to have participants. Details? Who wants details. They merely serve to substantiate any crazy idea of reality that Eric is working under when creating this event.
Goals: We really don't have any. I think I said I don't want to crack, and left it at that. Chip uttered the word "top" and then followed it up with a number, but I set him straight. I reminded him that my last 24 hour race, which included 2 laps of rest for every lap of riding, involved me wandering around in the woods at 3 a.m. picking up empty goo wrappers to suck out nourishment. There were a lot of people waiting for me at the finish line, but I think it was more relief than anything else that fueled their relaxed sighs. I can say this. This thing is a lot less "competitive" than that event, I'll never be alone, and it doesn't involve doing the same loop over and over. New trail is typically pretty engaging. Now, I've never tested this theory farther than a few hours, but I'm sure it'll be better than the dreaded 6th lap phenomenon that hasn't yet failed.
Why this is good for you, the reader: This will undoubtedly produce visual hilarity. We have to take pictures at "checkpoints" so we might as well take a few more eh? Someone suggested one picture per hour, a perverse time lapse effect of the decline of man. 36 pictures in all. Maybe that will be our only goal, and at that, I'm sure we can succeed.