TaterTOT Twenty-Leven: Titillation

BACKGROUND: As trikeys all over the western half of the North American continent entered the fifth year of the much-loved and highly anticipated TaterTOT event, scheduled for early Summer in the Idaho panhandle, I posted the following poem in chilly, wintry January to introduce a thread on the BROL Trikes forum for all of us to share our eager expectations:

TaterTOT Twenty-Leven is coming in June
And although some may say that it's much, much too soon
To begin giving road trips next Summer much thought,
Other trikeys demur, quite insistent we ought
To begin making vacation plans, checking maps,
Even shopping for trick new three-wheelers, perhaps.

We'll convene in the Idaho panhandle, gang,
With no entry fees, rules or some roadie's harangue
Like "You're too low to see; you're not holding your line!"
You can haul freight or dawdle, and that'll be fine.
You won't need plastic wristbands or dumb paper tags
That'll tear off, get lost or start flapping like flags.
Helmets optional; underwear isn't required –
Mirrors, glasses and shoes only if so desired.

There'll be no registration; ride routes are your choice.
No tight schedules and no Ride Director's loud voice
Screaming "Keep to the right! Single file, people, PLEASE!"
Shouts at TaterTOT are (almost) always a tease.
The political system most cycling events
Have is classic 'MONARCHY', but I have a sense
That 'CONGENIAL ANARCHY' better defines
TaterTOT's lack of government, rules or fine lines.

Any TOT, for the most part, should be classified
As a largely informal, unorganized ride.
There's some coordination and planning, of course,
But consensus among volunteers is the source
Of whatever we need to make whatever work.
Maybe we have been lucky not having a jerk
Gain control or cause problems, but year after year
TaterTOT has gone smoothly... and Bonnie's brought beer.

Most of us who have done TaterTOTs One through Four
(Maybe all!) will encourage, cajole and implore
Most (or all) of their favorite tricycling pals
To come pedal with dozens of fellows and gals
Who concur with convictions that TRICYCLES RULE!
Deltas, tadpoles and velos are all pretty cool,
But the people who ride TaterTOT are its heart –
Fun and friendly, hospitable, charming and smart!

Folks I've met there are all, to a (woman or) man,
Like a big band of brothers (and sisters), a clan,
Who have welcomed and always been cordial to me;
Ev'rybody who's done this event will agree.
Four-time veterans, onesies and those in between
Have assured me that they've never heard of nor seen
Anything quite so much joyful, playful pure fun
As three-wheeling in Idaho's warm Summer sun.

Even though there were eighty (some odd?) folks who came
To the hotel we used (which keeps changing its name)
In two-thousand-and-ten, we expect more this year.
Lots of folks will camp out with RVs or tent gear.
There'll be sleek, egg-shaped velos and tribes of tadpoles;
A few deltas, recumbikes, some folks taking strolls.
We'll spend day after day on the Coeur d'Alene trail;
After dark, conversation (or rest) will prevail.

We'll renew some old friendships, meet new people, too,
Ogle other folks' trikes – maybe test ride a few.
We'll share lunches and dinners, a group barbecue,
And the subsequent nocturnal nipping to-do
That was formerly called the Scotch Sipping Soiree.
We'll toast Mr. McLean, who'll be missed, sad to say...
We will each raise a glass or a can or a keg,
And we'll say, "Here's to you, pal; we're missing you, Greg!"

Anyway, although Summer is not quite yet near,
Anxious trikeys are eagerly getting in gear,
While envisioning Idaho's smooth, sunlit trail
As they're staring out windows at ice, sleet and hail.
So... if you're one of those still surrounded by snow,
It's okay; don't be shy about letting us know.

POW Index

Last updated 7/11/2011