This was a seminal day for me. In many ways this photograph marks the end of the beginning for me: my departure from Merlin Metalworks.
In the photo, from left to right:
- Tim Delaney: on the sidelines for the moment. Get him going and you’re in big trouble.
- Someone, maybe Bob S.(?) going in the wrong direction – or is it the right direction?
- Maxwell Kullaway: on my wheel and trying to gain a head of steam.
- Skunk(?): In the background – you can barely see his face – with some kind of helmet on. He’s on a 20″ wheel bike. A secret weapon of the indoor race.
- Me: just barely avoiding the $30,000 worth of hanging titanium frames ready for customers. It looks like I’m getting ready to reach down to pick up the box end wrench – purely as a defensive weapon, you understand.
I have a terrible memory but here’s what I recall:
Guy Parsons, Merlin’s latest owner, didn’t want to have a party for my departure – I don’t blame him – it was nothing to celebrate. So, I asked if I could get a dozen donuts and do a couple ‘donut loops‘ around the shop – a type of fun indoor racing we developed – just for old times sake. He didn’t see the harm in it, until the riding began.
An important side note: we used to spray the floor with lemon Pledge so riders would slide out – dangerously – in the corners. This photo shows some of this; the floor is kind of muddy with Pledge, dirt, and tire tracks. I’m just trying to stay upright.
My last day was a blast and I exited in a perfect way for me: causing mayhem; acting like a 10-year old; everyone laughing and having fun; no one the wiser, including me, as to what was going to happen next.