Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Opening Day

Per my previous post, yesterday was Opening Day on BikeReg.  I was probably the most relaxed I've been on an opening day, but its still something that makes me nervous, and I neurotically check the confirmed rider list every ten minutes to see how it's doing and who's on it even though I get an email for every entry (that I neurotically check every five minutes).

Opening Day is the moment the race takes on a life of its own.  Since October last year, this hoopla has been something in my hands and the hands of a few others to shape and wield.  By the time all is said and done, 14 months after this all began, nigh on 70 to 80 people will have lent a hand, but I know most of them and I know what they are doing and how and why.  Some, by mutually beneficial agreement, as in the case of our sponsors who support what we do.  Some, hired professionals like our officials.  Some, out of the goodness of their heart and zeal for this sport and this race, as with our volunteers.

But Opening Day marks the day the race is born after a long and arduous though happy gestation and begins to support itself without me.  Total strangers sign up to race, and this fact boggles my mind because I did not bring it into being, and even more amazing is these strangers tell their friends who also come out to race.  These people get something out of this race, and I have no way of knowing what that something is (unless I ask, and I frequently do).  The other uncanny moment is the morning of the race when all of these people show up and do exactly what they are supposed to do: find registration, warm up, race, clean up, eat, cheer, pit for their friends.  All we did was run some tape and send a few emails, and this seemingly chaotic but highly functioning thing with no central conscience comes into being.  It's a silly bike race; it's amazing!

And it starts on Opening Day.

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