Sunday, August 27, 2006

Zoobomb and Jesus

Portland has this weekly event called Zoobomb. I have been intrigued by it ever since I first heard about it. Basically the bike world lunatic fringe take the Max up to the top of the park by the zoo (thus the name) and then ride modified kids' bikes (or other things with wheels) quickly down the steep, curvy, crazy roads through the park. Now even with the contacts, my vision is questionable. So I know that zoobombing is not for me, but I have always wanted to go watch.

Currently I am house-sitting for some friends that own a house in the park. And I was brushing my teeth, when Katie (the dog I am watching) lost it and ran downstairs barking madly. I noticed a person on a bike and figured Katie would get over it once the bike person rode on. Well she kept barking. And then more bikes came. And more. And a skateboard or two. And using my best Nancy Drew super sleuthing, I realized that this had to be zoobomb!

There is no apparent zoobomb manifesto, but it seems to me that the core is simply a desire to get back in touch with the pure joy of riding fast on a bike. The speed, the wind in your hair, the extra kick of fear at the possibility of your face meeting the asphalt. (Thus the photo attached.) Really, other than falling in love is there anything better? (And a bike is a whole lost less complicated than a partner.)

There is also a certain hoodlumish absurdity to it that is a little bit, well beautiful. I know some of the kids drink and I am sure that there are many folks that wish this lil event didn't disturb their life every Sunday, but to me, there is something extra poignant about the fact that this group weekly chooses to risk limb, skin and potential criminal prosecution for the simple beauty of speed on a bike. Now that is true religion! Really. As I watched the kids fly by from my bedroom window, I noticed about 12 other people on the street that had come just to cheer the bombers on. It was kind of surreal to see people waiting just to watch people zip by them. And yet, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that those of us that couldn't do it, still hoped to catch some of the dust of youthful zeal simply by being near it.

And since it's Sunday, my thoughts turn to God. I really love God. In particular the past year has been a real time of growth for me and there is a new depth to my personal relationship with Jesus, that is, well beautiful. I know some of you out there in TV land think I am off my rocker or that Jesus is too conventional a spiritual choice. But the thing is that there is something pure and elemental and truly mind-blowing about what I experience through Christ. It's like doing a zoobomb from the top of Mt. Hood. The risk is huge (what if I'm wrong and this is all for naught), the price is high (no booty calls ever and I have to love even those that hate me) and ultimately it is simply a step of faith to say that I believe in a God I can't see. And yet, it is so real to me. As real as the wind on those zoobombers faces. But how do I explain it?

Strangely enough, words never seem right. I try. I write down various experiences, emotions, etc. But they always seem hollow compared to the way I feel. I feel a peace now that I never knew before. I am learning the sweetness of personal sacrifice. There is a strength within me that was never there before and it grows with every prayer, every day. And I hope there is a love that grows within me. I hope you can see that. And if you can't, forgive me, I'm trying.

Basically my core truths are as follows: zoobomb is cool. I'm super psyched I finally got to see it. And God is um, good. Really, really good. Who knew that zoobomb could remind me of my God?

ps: If they show, I stole the pics from check out the "cops & robbers" video. It made me cry. It made me laugh.


wendyrella said...

what? do you have a life or something?

smartypantsless said...

Now, you and I both know that is terribly unlikely. Just had no web. I almost lost my mind!

revphil said...

you liked this video?