Monday, June 16, 2014

Dru Potts - A subtle reminder that exceptional people come in surprising packages

Someone said today that death is about the people that are left behind.  I guess I agree with that.  When someone dies, they are freed of the responsibilities and confinements that the world brings.  It is indeed the living that question, ponder, complain, remember, fret, and wonder.  Dru Potts died last night.  Rock on, Dru.

I'm getting ready to go run stairs right now.  Dru would find that mildly amusing.  By the time we were pretty good amateur BMX racers, Dru and I did a bit of riding and "training" together.  I called it training, Dru called it work.  I would train, train, train all week, every week and Dru would show up at a race and kick ass as naturally as humanly possible. 

We traveled a lot to races as we grew old enough to drive, and he was a great traveling companion.  That mf'er could drive like a machine.  When everyone else would be falling asleep at the wheel, Dru pressed on, bragging about the mpg's that his GTI was turning in.  We'd travel to tracks near and far, and more often than not, his grandpa would meet us and film the races for us to watch someday.  That was one dedicated grandpa.  His mom would show up from places afar as well, usually scolding him for something he did (or didn't) do.  I was always worried she would lose her cool and whack him right in front of us, but she kept her composure despite Dru's disinterest whatever it was she was pissed about.

Fast forward to college, and Dru and I would skip afternoon classes at UMSL and hit the mountain bike trails at Weldon Spring.  He as almost as good at mountain biking as he was at BMX racing.  If there were no uphills, he would have been world champion.  Again, a natural on anything with two wheels.

Whatever his troubles in life, he remained the same level headed, dead pan guy he has always been.  We hadn't talked in years, and I got a phone call from him and we picked right up talking about what kind of mountain bike he should buy.  He could tell a story like no one else, taking the long way around, making the story as interesting and shocking as he possibly could, yet it would still be true.

Then I found out he was hitting the BMX bike so that he could spank the young guys at the track again.  At the same time, he was riding his motorcycle and doing well in motocross races again.  He and his lifelong friend Kyle, riding motorcycles just like it was 1986 again.  I didn't get a chance to ride with him in recent years, but he'd stop by the store and catch me up on all of his happenings.  I'm glad for that.

So I'm going to go "training" tonight, and Dru can smirk all he wants.  Hey, some of us don't have the luxury of being so good on two wheels.


James Tapscott said...

I raced with Dru for several years when we were kids. He was always a great competitor and really nice guy!!

liz ard said...

This made me smile.
Love you Pottsy xoxo

liz ard said...

This made me smile
Love you Pottsy. Xoxo

Anonymous said...

Awesome post Tim. Iremember that White GTI he owned until he traded it for a mustang. He put some miles on that GTI thats for sure. Those were truly the days of fun bmx racing! Glad you received my phone message I left at the bike shop for you about Dru. We'll miss him greatly!

Bob P.