The Uphill Grind

Something upset me last weekend and it’s been burning inside me like a bed of hot coals. Pissed me off, actually. We were having friends over for supper and I decided to squeeze in a last-minute bike ride before they arrived. I’m glad I went because I had an extremely good ride, coupled with a very productive brainstorming session. I managed to brew up some new ideas for shirt designs, which is always fun!

But that didn’t piss me off. What did piss me off was a comment made to me that riding my bike back home (uphill) was a waste of time (instead of being picked up and driven back home). Not only a waste of time, but I had to prove something. Prove something? Shocked, I didn’t really know what to say. The comments were so ridiculous that my facial expression must have been like when a toddler is trying to secretly push out a dump. But toddlers are never successful in being secretive when pushing out dump because their twisted facial expressions give them away every time. You hear me, toddlers! Your poo face blows your cover!

I’m not writing this as return fire, by the way. I’m writing this because I’m using those comments to turn my inner boiling into fuel to waste even more time riding uphill. Why? Because it will make me better. I will be physically stronger. And the more successful I will become at riding it out, my mind will grow stronger (and I admit I am one who needs more mind strength right now). Damn rights I had to prove something. I set a goal to ride a round-trip loop that was a real grind and I friggin’ nailed it. And that means the next time I ride that loop, I know what I’m capable of and can strive to surpass it.

This is the same for many of life’s situations: you know the grind I’ve had with our Crock of Shirt story, as I’ve written about all that before. (Oh, and how I’m also an apprentice plumber at age 41 – big grind!) It’s not easy putting yourself out there in public. It wasn’t easy starting Crock from scratch, literally sourcing out Canadian-made shirts and purchasing thousands of dollars worth of silk-screening equipment without prior experience. The researching that went into equipment and the production side of things would stop most people. But we’ve come a long way. Are we rich? Hahahah ha ha not even close. Not eeeeeeven close, man. Are we successful? Sure! To a degree, we are – our shirts have gone all around the world. Think about that – worldwide. Was it a waste of time? I don’t think so. What I do think is I’m sure as hell closer to success than someone who sits by and watches other people push themselves. And who knows what the future holds? Keep throwing darts and one just might stick, right?

There’s a quote that’s been repeating in my mind all weekend: Wolves don’t lose sleep over the opinions of sheep.

Keep grinding, friends.

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