Chapter 6 - Nice and Tight
Bryan agreed immediately to my plan of simply jumping over some wet mud. He didn’t know what his brother and I had learned about this mud. No one did. Back when Mark lost everything from his waist down, he was scared to say anything to anyone. He hid in the woods while I went back to my house to grab him some of my clothes he could borrow so he could sneak back into his room and put on some of his other clothes. His mom never missed that old pair of shorts and underwear and socks. Now she did ask Mark about his old shoes that were now missing. Mark had lied and said that someone must have taken them from the pool when we had been swimming. We were always losing things at the pool as everyone took each other’s stuff from time to time so his mom didn’t’ think twice about it.
Bryan and I met up the next day as we had planned. I made him promise the day before to tell no one about what was going to take place as this was something he must do without anyone knowing. He liked the idea of it being, “our secret” and the fact that, “until you complete it and then we will tell everyone!” I think all kids liked secrets now that I think about it. I know I did but had learned that most can’t keep secrets long so that’s why I planned the jump for the next day.
I moved the ramp over to the edge of the mud and went through what he needed to do to be able to complete his jump successfully.
“Listen little man, all you have to do is keep pedaling at full speed until you get to right here,” as I pointed to a spot right at the beginning of the ramp.
“Mud, that’s it?” he asked me again with a bothered tone that it wasn’t more of a challenge.
“Yes, Bryan, that’s it! Glass is just too dangerous. This way you won’t get hurt if you don’t make it but you are going to make the jump if you do what I tell you. Now, of course you may get your bike a little muddy if you don’t make it, but you won’t get hurt because your brother would kill me if I brought you home hurt and all we definitely don’t want that.”
“Yea, he would kill you if you got me hurt” Bryan said smiling proudly.
I reminded him of how proud his brother will be and he continued to smile like he had just won a lot of money. Actually, for the first time, I wasn’t completely bothered by him talking with him and that was surprising to me. That was odd I remember thinking to myself, but then I realized even at only thirteen years of age, once I planned to do something, I followed through.
“Now Bryan, I know this is going to sound a little weird but a problem I had way back when I did
my first real big jump like the one you are going to do was when I landed, my hands came off my handle bars. That ended up being really a bad thing. When your hands come off the handle bars, you lose control of your bike and losing control of your bike is the last thing you want to happen, you know?” I asked with the look that he should know this.
“Well duh, of course that would be bad. I don’t want to lose control of my bike.” Daniel understandably said.
“So, what I am going to do is simply tie your hands to the handle bars so you won’t mess up like I did and let go of the handle bars,” I said wondering how he would take this suggestion. “This will keep you safe and on the bike and that is my main goal, to keep your hands on these handlebars and keep you safe.” I added as even I wasn’t believing what I was hearing come out of my mouth.
“I would have never thought about that,” he said. “Sounds good to me!” Wow, I thought to myself. The kid can actually go minutes at a time without getting on my last nerve. Too late for him. It sucks to suck I thought.
“I really believe if you keep pedaling as hard as you can all the way up till you leave the jump, you will definitely clear the mud,” I said and actually I didn’t even believe what I was saying as I looked over at the distance of the jump and calculated it to be between 15 feet to 20 feet across.
“Ok” Bryan said a little hesitantly, “Sounds good.”
“Let’s do this shit!” I said as I started tying his hands to the grips of the handle bars, nice and tight.