Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Chasin' Stuff

In 2005 I bought a Kawasaki Nomad. In this year I relearned how to ride, spending most of my time on group rides with the New England Riders aka NERds. In 2006, there was group called the Diner (which was a split off of the NERds, but that’s a another whole other story). They held a contest for riding and taking pictures of the most Diners. Well this seemed like a neat thing to do, equipped with my Garmin 2610, I proceeded to research all the classic diners in New England. Well I outright won that Diner riding contest with something like 60 diners to my credit with my closest competitor having 15 or so. I discovered I really like tracking down these destinations. OSJ of the NERds was holding a treasure hunt that started in April of 2006. I kind of dismissed the hunt, because alot of the clues were very cryptic at best. The treasure hunt was broken into 2 parts: A> riding to locations that were published at the beginning of the contest and B>monthly bonuses. The following is the September 2006 bonus as a sample of what we had to solve and the one that got me hooked on Chasin Stuff.

"Once was said of this fine man,
Pompous are so your phrases you say..
they search & search across our land
trying to find Ideas on such a day

Before it ended, it came to a end
At the city by the bay
A cool man took over, for he had to wend
to foggy bottom on a summers day

Now figure out the name
And you will see
For there are six the same
That you need to post to me

Get wind first and then visit to see
5,000 points will add real fast
you score will climb suddenly
The others you just may surpass

Once the puzzle is solved and the photos flow
the rest can play for they didn't know
only 1000 points they can get
So then become not much of a threat."

OSJ Treasure Hunt September 2006

I spent a good many hours as Google became my best friend and worst enemy. I had exhausted all combinations I could think of until I plugged this combination of words in. {pompous phrases president search of an idea} Viola!! Low and behold it lead me to our 29th president. OK so how did the above fit?

City by the bay = San Francisco, where Warren G Harding died

Cool man took over = Calvin Coolidge, VP to Harding

Foggy Bottom = one of the oldest sections of Washington DC, hence a guess we were talking about a president

For there six the same = there is a Warren in each of the New England states. Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont

The objective was to ride to each of the Warren's and grab a picture of some official place indicated you were in Warren. We had the entire month of September to grab these places. I left on a Friday morning at 5am heading to Warren, ME. 26 hours later and 1044 miles, I completed the 6 Warrens. It was never my intention to do them all in one day; it just worked out that way. I realized then it would not be that difficult to complete an SS1K for the Iron Butt Association. After all, this only took 26 hours and I snapped something like 100 photos during the journey.

When I got home I posted up my pics to the Rally Bastid and realized I had taken a picture of West Warren, MA and not Warren, MA. I heard another person was out and about trying to complete the Warrens in the same day and I would be damned if I was gonna be beat by a technicality. Back on my bike to get a picture of Warren, MA. Got home (almost fell asleep riding home) and posted up the picture of Warren.

Well I got those 5,000 points and from that day on I have been Chasin Stuff.

Oh!! I won the 2006 OSJ Treasure Hunt, but not by much. One of the clues was to post up as many pictures of jails you could find. All the other contestants interpretted this to mean prisons. In most towns I was in (and I was in a lot of them), I took a picture of the police station. All police stations have a holding cell that would be considered a jail. I sandbagged these pictures until New Year's Eve which is when the contest ended. This was what pushed me over the top to win.

Warren ME
Warren NH

Warren VT
Warren CT
Warren MA
Warren RI

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