October 26th, 2017 - By Patrick T. McBriarty
I have been anxious the past several weeks and the funny thing is . . . it is probably Mark’s fault. The anxiety is over potential mishaps and fears of sailing a small sailboat on the Atlantic. It has caused several sleepless nights. Looking back on the eve of setting off it has been two months alternating between outright worry and sweeping my fears under a rug of overconfidence and positive thoughts. Yet, most days they creep back, particularly at night. Read More
October 11th, 2017 - By Patrick T. McBriarty
At times being a little kid does not seem so long ago. I was curious, loved to play, and lucky to make friends easily.
One of my earliest memories is of running through the backyards of my neighborhood in Normal, Illinois (really that was the name of the town) to visit a friend and sprinting backyard to another and another just because I could. It was the beginning of a beautiful summer day that seemed to hold endless opportunities. School was out, sunny, and warm I could feel the grass and the cool morning dew under my bare feet as I dashed along, both excited and afraid of stepping on a bee in the clover. Read More
August 19th, 2016 - By Patrick T. McBriarty
Bicycling across any state, big or small, is quite a feat! However, the Hawkeye State has turned it into an art form!
Every July the Des Moines Register organizes and hosts the Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, better known as RAGBRAI
. Back in 1973 it was the harebrained idea of two intrepid newspaper reporters who rode across the state. Held every year since it has become an Iowa tradition. Changing the route year-to-year over the past 44 years it has passed through 800 towns and peddled across all 99 Iowa counties. Read More
July 22nd, 2016 - By Patrick T. McBriarty
It feels strange once it’s done, naked and exposed.
I hadn’t planned to, although it wasn’t the first time. It has been at least four years. The decision to do it developed over many miles and a-half-dozen weeks. It wasn’t for ascetic or sexual reasons. However, there is something feminine about the look of shaved legs, even on a man. It brings a certain thrill and eroticism. Years ago and again this time, I rationalized it for practical reasons and that “everyone is doing it.”
Just why would a middle-aged man (hate that I now fall into that category!) go on and on about shaving his legs? Read More
January 25th, 2016 - By Patrick T. McBriarty
To begin 2016, I spend most of January in an empty hotel on Mackinac Island. r-e-d-R-U-M, R-E-D-R-U-M!! As a Chicago author and avid sailor the opportunity to visit in the winter was simply too unique and tantalizing to pass up. Having participated multiple times in the Chicago-Mac Race, I was quite familiar with the island in high-season — when the primary means of transportation is by bicycle, wagon, or carriage. Here this more than 100 year-old way of life has been preserved, and except for emergency vehicles, no automobiles are allowed on the island. Read More