FFS Fridays: Lost Friends and Blood Pipes

FFS. It is Friday, finally, and this is what this week has felt like:


I kid, I kid. We actually have no idea whether T-Rex was actually that color. The wine, well, depending on your poison.

Today marks the third anniversary of our fallen comrade and community member Jon Lennard’s passing. His memory rides with me still today; I have lost a certain innocence, that invincible feeling that bad things only happen to people whose lives are farther removed. Jon reminds me every day that Cycling is a risk and that if I’m not a lot careful and a little lucky, it could be my last ride. I wish these lessons could be taught in another way, and maybe other can learn in more practical ways, but for me that lesson came through @itburns’ sacrifice. I still struggle to understand that I could miss someone in this way, someone I’d never met. That sentence, by the way, is clumsy. But I think he’d have liked it that way; he’d have made fun of it in his way, that assertively humble style of his that always made me laugh.

Speaking of comrades, check out the blood pipes on Mr Alfa Lum here. This is the team that was my favorite in 1989, and one which I blame for introducing EPO into the European Pro peloton. Those guns; mercy me, thems are some Iron Curtains right there. And could anyone ever be any more Casually Deliberate? How do you rest so jauntily on so rakish a top tube? Rooskies, that’s who.

FFS. It’s Friday. Enjoy the weekend, get on the bike, and remember our fallen comrade, Jon Lennard. We miss you, my friend.

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17 Replies to “FFS Fridays: Lost Friends and Blood Pipes”

  1. Thanks for marking this moment, Frank. I only knew Jon as @itburns though we were riding partners once removed, if you will. He was always either outright funny or curious in that way where you know it was funny but you weren’t smart enough to get it. And sometimes his comments matched his name.

    Tomorrow we leave for Geneva to start a new life but it is best to slow down and remember Jon and his friends. Merckxspeed Jon.

  2. Yes, as I get older and now into my mid-40’s and lose more friends through such unexpected and seemingly karmic arbritariness, it gives me pause to wonder.

    Often I just mentally walk away and shake my head but each of their passings makes me want to deserve the next breath I draw that much more.

    Ah fuck, getting all wishywashy here in the early dawn.

    @itburns–ride easy, Mate.

  3. I commuted to the office and then back home again on Friday.  36 Km and 46 Km may not seem much except that I was Working From Home.

    RIP @itburns – may the wind be always from behind.

  4. @itburns death was the one that made all of you real, all whom I have not met, all who sadly I am out of touch with because I am not posting up these days. It happens that I come back today and we celebrate a creative who made us laugh – just his screen name made me laugh and still does.

    RIP @itburns

  5. Gone too soon, Jon. We miss you, bud.

    Enjoy today, enjoy your next ride everyone!



  6. @itburns passed away before I found the path of Velominati but I have absorbed enough of his presence through archived articles etc to understand the effect he had on everyone, and the shockwaves caused by his death; I think about him quite often when I ride.

    Similarly, my ‘real’ club lost a racer in a local road race just before I joined. The fact I didn’t know the guy and wasn’t part of the club when he died doesn’t mean I don’t feel the loss (especially considering the circumstances), and I think about him most times I ride and every time I race.

    I’ll be out tonight and I’ll take a moment to remember Jon and Ben, two guys I never knew but whose deaths while riding has cast a shadow onto my own cycling, and I’ll ride hard, ride safe and ride home.


  7. @Oli

    Mr Alfa Lum = good old Andrei Tchmil, bless him.

    Fuck, that’s three-monument-winner Tchmil!?!?!  I did not even recognize him!

    Thanks once more, Oli!!!

  8. I definitely wanted to shake Jon’s hand. He is remembered on my end — often.

  9. Scary, did not know until now that @itburns died 3 years ago, I have been reading comments from him on various articles. Still makes me chuckle when I see his Gollum-avatar.

  10. Somebody please explain how Andrei could possibly shave those legs without causing a deep red (oxygen-rich) geyser. No doubt a laconic response with a butterfly Band-Aid would choke it off.  As a skinny kid in high school, I was anything but casual about my deliberate attempts to get even one vein in my biceps to pop like those pipes- by curling barbells in front of a mirror!

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