3PM, Monday, June 8: This morning was a perfect day for my birthday ride, so I called ESPN to discuss plans for live-streaming on ESPN-27, the channel devoted to amateur athletes. I recorded the conversation.
ESPN: Good morning, ESPN. How may I help you?
ME: May I speak to the Executive Producer at your ESPN-27 Channel please? I’m calling about the live-streaming of my attempt to bike my age.
ESPN: There is no ESPN-27 channel. We have ESPN, ESPN-2, and ESPN-3. That’s it.l
ME: But I was told……
ESPN: Sir, there’s no such channel. You’ve been tricked.
ME: Then perhaps ESPN would be interested in live-streaming my effort on ESPN-3. I know you are desperate for live sporting events.
ESPN: I don’t think we’re that desperate, sir.
ME: It might draw an audience. After all, my effort is sanctioned by ABBA.
ESPN: What? A musical group is sanctioning athletic events?
ME: No, ABBA is the Association of Birthday Bikers Athletes. It’s in Sweden. Nothing to do with music.
ESPN: Would you mind holding for a minute, sir?
(A minute or more passes)
ESPN: Sir, I’m afraid someone is pulling your leg. There is no ‘Annual Birthday Bikers Association.’ There is ABBA, the Swedish pop supergroup that’s world famous for songs like ‘Dancing Queen.’ Sir, you need to get out more often. Thank you for calling ESPN.
(She concludes the call)
Well, it turns out that she was correct. Apparently ABBA is/are some singers in Sweden, kind of like The Weavers, The Kingston Trio, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Peter, Paul & Mary, or the Yale Glee Club. Who knew?
Someone tricked me about ABBA and ESPN-27. I owe you an apology, because what I told you last week about riding with a Target logo on my back, wearing Depends for Men bike pants, and being pumped up by Vacurect (my tires) was false.
Lucky for me, Vin Scully, Al Michaels, Tony Kornheiser, and the other famous sports announcers hadn’t yet responded to my invitation to get involved in the live-streaming. It would have been embarrassing to have to let them down. I guess they were waiting until my actual birthday, June 14th, got closer to accept my invitation.
But yesterday was a perfect day for biking, and so I rode anyway…
As you can see, I added an extra mile for good measure. So, friends, please write your checks for $80, $800, $8,000 or some other multiple of 80 in support of organizations in minority communities affected by the pandemic and the murder of George Floyd.
Once again, I apologize for misleading you about ABBA. I’m thinking it’s a good idea to have an organization of birthday riders, but it needs a different name. Maybe Birthday Athletes Biking Annually?