The Big Hurt

I had not thought about my old friend The Big Hurt much of late. It wasn’t until my wife told me a story this week of a co-worker of hers, a nice guy about my age that I’ve met exactly once, that I thought much about it at all. Seems the old boy went through a break up recently with his girlfriend of some years. Many of us have been through it, and it is never a good time. Life throws you in the meat grinder from time to time. My man’s answer to life’s challenge? Go out on a vision quest.

His plan was a simple one, and alluring in design. He would drive north out of the Valley of the Sun, toward the cooler climate of the Verde Valley, or onward to Flagstaff if the snow held off. He wanted it cool, mind you, not frozen. Park the car at whatever trailhead, shoulder the pack, turn from the pavement, work, girl, memory, life, burden, responsibility and pain, and walk in a straight line until he hallucinated. He would have a compass and map, just in case things got hairy. He planned on putting himself deep in the hurt locker. He was going to walk all of the daylight hours remaining in the day, and probably push on through the darkness as well. He was going to go Big. No physical destination in mind, no place on this earth he had to get to or past in his journey. His end point was ethereal; the woods lovely, dark and deep, and many miles to go before the collapse into sleep.

On this point too, many of us can relate. The good old hurt locker. The narrow and welcoming confines. And that’s what got me thinking. I’ve been burying myself in the pain cave for years. Now that I’m up to my waist in law school, and I haven’t the time for trivial matters such as bike rides, I realize what I’ve been missing over the last year of my life – I haven’t gone out and beat myself senseless on the bike in far too long.

There is a very real need, in some of us, to get out there and fucking bury it. Turn yourself inside out and feel the burn. Some climb rocks, some run, some hike. I ride bikes.

I feel a hurt coming on. And I welcome it like an old friend.

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About big jonny

The man, the legend. The guy who started it all back in the Year of Our Lord Beer, 2000, with a couple of pages worth of idiotic ranting hardcoded on some random porn site that would host anything you uploaded, a book called HTML for Dummies (which was completely appropriate), a bad attitude (which hasn’t much changed), and a Dell desktop running Win95 with 64 mgs of ram and a six gig hard drive. Those were the days. Then he went to law school. Go figure. Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

17 thoughts on “The Big Hurt

  1. Your nice text made me think about a french philosopher Michel ONFRAY’s last book: “The use of forests – The temptation of Democritus”

    Have a look at the summary and tell me :

    “Democritus was in ancient Greece celebrated as a materialist philosopher, who traveled the world. During his trip to India, he found the villainy of men. So he built a small hut at the bottom of his garden to finish in wise the rest of his days. I called temptation of Democritus and use forests this downtrend on one’s soul in a hateful world.
    The world of yesterday is that today, this will be that of tomorrow: the political intrigue, the calamities of war, power games, the cynical strategy of powerful people, the sequence of treason, complicity of most philosophers, men of God whitch invented the devil, the mechanics of sad passions – envy, jealousy, hatred, resentment … – the triumph of injustice, the reign of the critical low. The dominance of renegades, blood, crime, murder …
    Recover one’s soul requires the recovery of earth’s meaning, ie to reconcile with the essential: the movement of the stars, the logic of the race of the planets, the coincidence with the elements, the seasons that teaches good death, the inclusion of its destiny in the necessity of nature.
    Tired of our time’s misery witch are se same than the ancient world’s, one has to plant an oak tree, to watch it grow up, to charge its boards, to dry and see them make a coffin in which one will take place in the earth, that is to say, in the cosmos.”

    http://pagesperso-orange.fr/michel.onfray/accueilonfray.htm

  2. Why do you drink bad coffee (beer, burbon) on qccassion? To better appreciate the good.

    The best part of going to work is it makes my days off better.

    Ying / Yang

    Ride a single speed road bike, fenders utilitarian and race a single speed mountain bike. My dad and friends, none of whom ride much, ask why I ride these most of the time and leave the carbon, geared and suspension in the garage? I say, its because it make me work, but you said it better. I turns me closer to inside-out on a daily basis. When so much of life seem seems less than real; nothing is more so than pedaling, or skiing or trail running for that matter.

    Gravity experienced on a daily basis.

    Putting the “inside out”

  3. Since it is off season for cycling, is it possible to maybe for one day talk about golf and all the goings on in that sport , and stuff !!!!!!!!!!!!

    Anybody ??????????

  4. PAiN CaVE!!! Hooray, yeah you can get there in the off season too. Not sure how many bikers have tried their hand at nordic skiing, but it sure feels good to suffer so spectacularly on a borderline flat bit of snow, sheesh it hurts.. like they say, you don’t have to have fun to have fun..

  5. “Since it is off season for cycling, is it possible to maybe for one day talk about golf”

    What is this “off season” you refer to? I got caught by rain (again) today, nine miles from home, and got to spend some quality time on standing climbs with water running off my helmet into my eyes. My feet are frozen (again).

    Can’t wait to start skate-skiing, they will start grooming this week. slappy is right, it’ll put you in the red zone about two hundred yards from the trailhead and you can stay there as long as you want.

  6. Crazy-
    5 years ago, you never heard a mention of nordic on this blog. You guys come out to the Flag nordic center and free lessons are yours. I’ll teach you how to hurt real bad, but at least look good while you’re doin’ it!

  7. I want DC’s best personalities to go off on the latest application for your golf club other than golfing ………..Throw in some Sweedish nanny bashing ta boot …….

  8. Well stated big johnny and patrick. I’ll be up at 4 am tomorrow, 30 degrees and possible snow…to go for a run. We are a strange breed, no?

  9. Gnome, didn’t you mean flesh light?

    I feel you on that fliesby, weathers little better in TN but the runs still the same…
    Pain has never felt better….lets me know I’m alive!

  10. Great thing about being on a bike is even when it hurts, it ain’t no cave or locker. It’s wide open, endless road. I call it WHITE LINE THERAPY. There’s nothing that WLT cannot cure.

  11. Slappy hit it! Skate skiing starts soon, and nothing hurts like that! I’m no so sure about this RED zone as long as you want though…that may actually kill you. Nothing like not havin’ fun to have fun!