Do you know what that thing that keeps going round and round at the end of your foot is called?

It’s called a crank and before you respond with some smart arse question like; “but Paul isn’t that what you are called” and I answer in the affirmative with an extended finger, let me clarify that this crank is a bicycle part and serves as a mount for the pedal and a fulcrum for mechanical advantage to thrust the bike forward (ok - I made up that last part but it still might be correct).

Apparently it is designed to remain attached to the bicycle at all times but Saturday as it was being mechanically advantaged to propel my old carcass skyward it filed for divorce. Splitsville. Ejected like the lunar module. Fully detached. No longer willing to provide mechanical, nor any other type of advantage.

My loyal team mates of these past seven years were of course fully sympathetic offering such sage advice as “I’d get that fixed” or “try sticking it back on with your chewing gum” which I greatly appreciated together with the shouts of encouragement like “pull over and get the hell out of my way” and “you’re F’d pal” whatever that means. Who showed them my report cards?

In the true spirit of R2S; however, I remained undaunted and responded with the only acceptable response from a dedicated man of action! I authoritatively tore the offending crank from the clutches of my neon coloured bike shoes (to which it had remained attached like an unsalted leach), I dismounted using a triple sow cow as I had seen in the Olympics, I raised the crank high above my head in victory and….
I called my wife.

Not because I’m some whimpering, whining, snivelling wimp of a man like that dude from the TV ad for cold medications. No. Stop saying those things! It was merely a coincidence that she happened to be visiting her dear Godmother Faith (our most cherished senior that received a Donald Trump Chia pet from us for Christmas) in close proximity to where this mountainous malfunction occurred and within steps of Obsession Bikes on Lonsdale Avenue (mention provided in consideration of future discounts).  

She retrieved me from our rest stop at Cleveland Dam (which fortunately is not in Cleveland) where a team of the greatest mechanical minds were assessing my dilemma (which has nothing to do with the Dahli llama) using a bevy of tools (which is not the same expression as the drink of choice for annoying people). “Stop” she said to Doc Murphy who glanced up from his mechanics creeper. “you’ll never fix it with the tool you are using”. “All you need is this” Andrea declared as she held aloft...

Her Visa card.

And so it passed that what could have been a sudden termination in my pursuit of fitness was averted by the use of a plastic part and I was able to join the team for our harrowing ascent of Cypress mountain albeit with me trailing by a few kilometres and witnessed only by the prying eyes of the occasional cougar and grizzly bear.

The moral of the story, of course, is that bad things can happen when you just don’t expect it. That’s why we ride. That’s why we ask for your donations. Because every day someone we love could have their crank fall off and discover they have cancer. This too can be mitigated by the use of plastic. I urge you to click on the link below and provide funds that we will faithfully steward to provide researchers with the tools to create better outcomes for cancer victims.
Yours thankfully and crankfully,Toilet Paper Paul

Reprinted from my latest donor appeal.


Hello there,

I have been having a plant sale to raise money and have a few plants left. They are:

flags (the big irisis)

sedum, Autumn joy

Euphorbia dulcas chameleon

soloman's seal

campanula glomerata purple pixie.

They are $2.50 each and I can bring them to the JUne 3rd ride.



Liz Edmunson



Starting to get all ready for the ride, excited for another incredible experience. Off spray - check. Sunscreen - check.  Getting stronger everday - check.

10yr brain cancer survivor - check

Looking forward to seeing  all your faces again.

Mike Gentles


I won an entry to the Apple Triathlon in Kelowna in August 18-19. I am already registered so if you are interested in participating, see me for a free entry. 


Page 7 of 113