On Your Left!

  I heard them coming.  The crunch of rubber tires on dried leaves, the click of a rear derailleur, the gentle whoosh of spokes beating the air; there was no need to look over my shoulder because I knew I had company.  I held my line and waited.  Surely one of them would offer up […]

Ollie Who?

  “So who’s been to the Panama Canal?  Can I see a show of hands?” I looked around cautiously.  Of the 20+ folks in the room; myself and the lecturer were the only ones with our hands down. The lecturer, an imposing gentleman with the memorable name of Myles Standish, shrugged his shoulders and announced […]

Goliath vs. David

  Want to compete in a big time BBQ contest?  $275.00 is all it takes to enter the NC BBQ Championships and that gets you a 25 by 30 foot piece of grass with water and electricity.  The only thing left to pay for is meat, fire, spice and beer.    A few days prior to […]

Kid Stuff

This essay originally appeared in the September 2002 issue of Smithsonian Air & Space Magazine   The Beechcraft King Air 200 has shut down; the passengers disembarked and as the pilots are walking away I whisper into my 4-year-old son’s ear “Wave at the pilots”.  It works like a charm.  One of the pilots walks […]

The Grittiest Gold Medal of London

I loved watching the summer Olympics and its mix of ancient warrior sports tied with the relatively modern touches from cycling, tennis, diving and gymnastics.  In the 16 days of competition there was so much exceptional athleticism on display it’s tough to pick a favorite, but I will.  My vote for the grittiest display of […]

The Trail less Taken

With sincere apologies to the memory of Robert Frost   Two trails diverged in a Carolina wood And I with but a second to choose with two other cyclists bearing down quickly thinking I was their trail riding food I looked down one saw blackberries bent up to here Then took the other, thinking it […]

The State of the Market

  When we moved to Greenville in 1994 I had embraced the idea that great restaurant food should have a sense of place.  In short order I ended up as Chef at a recently opened bistro that featured a New-American style menu and I set about creating a regional focus.  I sought out local farmers […]

Thanks for making it interesting George

  Larry and I were a third of the way up the north side of Paris mountain when a white-jersey clad rider flashed by us, descending at an incredible angle and speed.  “Damn, I think that was Hincapie!” My cycling buddy Larry worked third shift and lived around the corner so four or five times […]

Hollywood and Whine

Why do we feel the need to turn authentic heroes into caricatures of themselves? My son and I recently watched the movie Red Tails.  We wanted to see it on the big screen but had to settle for our own theatre.  I really wanted to like this movie.  If there ever was a chapter of […]

The Class of the Field

“Here’s your lunch and if you’ll excuse me” I announced as I handed the paper plates to Juan and Jimmy.  I was serving lunch to two professional racing drivers that I respected and admired yet at that moment I was certain no one wanted me near them.  The producer was having none of it. She […]