Yes, I am Precious. Dot Com.

August 9, 2010

Yes, I am Precious. Dot Com

About two months ago, on a Friday, a little site was set to launch. It was a fun little thing, and Precious was peeing his pants with excitement for it to go live so the true hero of the ride across the USA could be revealed. I was excited for him. So excited, I promptly crashed him into a ditch on the Wednesday prior, and the Friday launch evaporated into the air like so many hopes and dreams of bicycles.

Well today is the big day. The day when his site finally goes live for realz. The day when Precious gets his moment in the sun and can raise his glory chalice skyward so that it may glint in the light for all to gaze upon.

So without any further ado, please point your little internet pointy things to and marvel at the majesty that is a bike with a brain. (The video above is also embedded there if you want to just skip the viewing here.) It’s actually been running since the restart day, so you can slide the timeline back and get an idea of how we’ve been going. Also, be sure to follow my boy on Twitter. I loves him, and I know in his heart he loves me too he just doesn’t know how to express it. It’s actually his tough love and reverse psychology that’s getting me through these hard days. Enjoy your moment, love!

I personally would like to thank Breakfast NY for building this beautiful thing and for making Precious a real live boy. I don’t know how it works – magic and unicorn hoof dust I suspect – but I know that I love it. Thanks Andrew, Mattias and Mike. You make good brains.

Now, if a site where you could watch the progress of a day’s riding and hear the thoughts of a somewhat cantankerous bike was all that it was, then that would be fine and dandy and lovely. By all means, come back every day and enjoy the activity on your laptop, iPad or whatever. But…

I also hope you will be inspired by the non-giving-upedness of it all and donate to our LIVESTRONG Team Fatty page. And here’s why.

Precious and I may have our differences, but there is one thing we both agree on.

Cancer is a douche.

It’s completely indiscriminate. It’s mindless violence in the petrie dish of the human body. It doesn’t care whose body. It doesn’t care if you just got into Yale, or are expecting your first child, or even if you are a child. It doesn’t care if you’re a goody two-shoes or a cold-hearted asshole. It doesn’t give a damn.

It is a douche of the highest order.

“The Big C, with a little ancer, of which there is none,” as it was once put by Andrew Denton in an excellent documentary. And of course, there are many fine charities and organizations who are on the case and looking for that answer.

But there’s one that’s a little different and I have hitched my wagon to it. That organization is LIVESTRONG.

Yes, but why? I have talked about this before, but I was heavily concussed and don’t really remember filming that video. So I want to speak for both Precious and myself and express it a little more clearly as to why we’re putting aside our differences and raising money towards this organization.

Let me get this off my chest first.

In my useless and uninformed opinion, LIVESTRONG suffers from what I’m calling the Bono Dilemma. (You can substitute Bono for Geldof or Sting, it all suffers the same). The Bono Dilemma occurs when a celebrity is tied to a worthy cause which turns a bunch of people on to said cause, but also alienates a bunch of others simply because they dislike that celebrity.

In Bono’s case, if you think he’s a total tosser who should just keep his Irish ass in his Irish business, you’re never going to see past his irish face and realize that by buying that iPod you just paid for 3 weeks of medicine for someone living with HIV in Africa. You’re just gonna seethe and be all “Bono, get back in your tiny box with The Edge and play your crap music.”*

So if you think Lance Armstrong is a prize super-spandexed wanker*, you’re never gonna hear that LIVESTRONG empowers folks in their fight against cancer, helps people when they feel they have nowhere to turn, educates and supports families and caregivers, can be an advocate in the health care struggle, and for many is simply a 1000W light in what can be a very dark tunnel.

I really don’t care what you think about Lance. I don’t really feel strongly either way since I was turned on to cycling by Phil Anderson and keep my fire burning with Jens Voigt. But if you’re not getting and understanding how important and human LIVESTRONG is because you can’t get past that Lance fella, that cheeses my buns. That really rips my knitting.

First of all, take cycling out of this. Lance is just a bloke. Sure, he’s a bloke who wins stuff, and is famous and vocal and looks good in black and yellow. But at the end of the day, he’s still just a bloke. He has flaws and probably leaves the toilet seat up. A bloke. But he’s a bloke who’s had cancer – one that nearly punched his clock. I’ve read the book. He fought like buggery and continues to inspire many because of that fight.

Second of all, I think LIVESTRONG is at a stage where it’s way more than Lance. Sure he’s been been the catalyst of hope for a movement, but when I think of LIVESTRONG, I don’t think of Lance. I think of Elden and Susan Nelson. It has been a year since her passing, and maybe three since I stared following the story through Elden’s blog. I still think about that fight. It was that fight that sparked my aha moment with LIVESTRONG. It’s why I joined Team Fatty.

Learning about LIVESTRONG has made me think about what it means to be human. What are the qualities of myself that I want to share? How am I helping people? How can I do more? How am I living my life?

It’s easy to be cynical. To poopoo things and to think nothing is worth having hope for. That the world’s gonna explode, or the earth will collapse in on itself when all the oil is gone, like a sad, beanless beanbag . That there’ll be another season of the Jersey Shore. It’s easy to think that everyone is out to cheat you, or spit in your food, or steal your parking spot. And that makes it easy to always be secretive. To protect yourself. To not have faith in humans.

I don’t want to not have faith in humans. I don’t want to live like that. To be like that.

We have a huge capacity in our hearts to look past ourselves and help others. Whether it’s stopping to see if someone looking at a map needs directions, or offering to take a person in for the night when they’ve been in a stupid bike accident and have nowhere to go. Moments like this don’t seem like much, and sometimes we have no idea of the impact these little acts have on others. But to the recipient, these are incredible moments. Small at times, but full of humanity. (And yes, I know there is risk in stopping to help people, but use your best judgement!)

Donating to LIVESTRONG is the equivalent of pulling up to help someone jumpstart their car so they can get to work. That’s oversimplifying it a bit, but knowing they’re there for you, whether you’ve just been diagnosed, or are the child of a parent with cancer, or need to get back in the fight and are struggling with life is a huge thing. It’s a big deal. Significant times infinity.

Be a person with cancer zapping jumper leads in your car. Donate and jumpstart someone’s fight. Throw a little of your spare change into the bucket. Make Precious happy for once.

It seems that we’re willing to fight for all sorts of things – for land, money, democracy – and have forgotten about how to fight for each other. I hope you will help Precious and myself meet our goal of $4,262. It’s not a huge goal, and I’ll be more than chuffed to make it. But if you want to push us way over that too, please do.

Ride on!

PS: I recently watched the first season of Breaking Bad. After the main character is diagnosed with lung cancer, he tells no one. He goes about his usual day. He’s stunned, shocked, scared. And you know my first thought while I’m watching this?

Dude should call LIVESTRONG.

*The opinions expressed in the few paragraphs pertaining to Bono (and by association, U2), and Lance are not those of this author.

  1. Reply


    August 9, 2010

    Incredible. Insightful. I want to be like you! You are an inspiration.

  2. Reply


    August 9, 2010

    Nicely done! Donation made… now pedal on! Rubber side down please.

  3. Reply


    August 9, 2010


  4. Reply

    Josh in Upstate NY

    August 11, 2010

    I knew Precious was Tweeting but this has got to be the coolest thing ever! Hey, Precious, Keep B.O.B. in line and keep Janeen on the road this time! Ride on!

  5. Reply


    August 16, 2010

    Truly inspirational. Love the marriage of technology and the human spirit. Safe travels!


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