And today we begin with a song.
I could not get it out of my head last night, and in so many ways it reminds me of the STXC experience. First and foremost, the song structure itself mimics the course design. The very simple, repeated melody with a slightly altered bridge mimics the course structure of STXC; every week we repeat returning to PIR, racing in the grass and moto course. Our slightly varied bridge section happens to be the slight changes in course direction and technical elements. It's so basic that the story pretty much writes itself.
Being a cowboy classic (and a #1 on US pop charts in the 60's), it's about pursuing what we love and it's challenges all while riding. In Robbins' case the hero happens to be actually riding a horse, but we mount steel and plastic steeds in a similar way. Furthermore, the story of the song has a distinct temporal journey, and it's cyclical in nature. Begin, depart, return to beginning. We also line up in the start gates, sprint out away from "town" and return feeling as if we may actually die (well, some of us anyway). See below verses:
"Something is dreadfully wrong for I feel
A deep burning pain in my side
Though I am trying to stay in the saddle
I'm getting weary, unable to ride
But my love for
Felina is strong and I rise where I've fallen
Though I am weary I can't stop to rest"
Lastly, finality is written into the subtext of the song: "Felina" is an anagram for "Finale" and it suggests that we do things at times knowing full-well that they will end. Like our hero, we live and die in a cyclical fashion every Monday for seven weeks knowing all the while that our blissful challenge will end. Our reward: the true love of cycling.
A sincere thanks goes out to Kris Schamp. Chapeau on the 12th successful year of PDXSTXC! Thanks for providing us dirt-churchers with a place to gather weekly, it's been a great series. Thanks to everyone for following along with my posts as well, it's been a ton of fun as well as a creative challenge. Thanks to all the other cool photographers out there for documenting the scene; some of you I've met and some I haven't yet. Keep on that grind! Thanks to the Ruckus Test Team for their volunteer efforts, and thanks to Metropolis Cycles for always bringing the party.
Until next year, Short Track. "One little kiss and Felina, goodbye".