Welcome back Hypertransitory readers, this is going to be a bit of a different post for me.
Instead of my usual technical or comics stuff, this time I’m helping a good friend of mine raise awareness of Familial Adenomatous Polyposis (FAP) and Desmoid Tumor Research needs.
Oh yeah, he’ll be doing it while riding across the country on a Ducati Multistrada 1200 S Touring Edition -which was lent to him for FREE by Ducati North America.
WHO HE IS
The man in question is Todd Spurrier, a friend of mine for over 10 years now.
Hello, my name is Todd. And, I have an idea. To do a solo yearlong ride across North America spreading awareness for causes I feel strongly about. Which includes Cancer (colon cancer took my dad from us when he was 32 and I was 12), Familial Adenomatous Polyposis [FAP] (My dad’s cancer came via FAP. Both my sisters, niece, nephew and I have FAP), Desmoid Tumor Research (I have an inoperable intra-abdominal desmoid tumor), MS (My sister was diagnosed with a few years ago), Native American issues (My dad was born and raised on an Indian reservation) and Rivers (I have always had a love for fishing rivers, so river health is very important to me).
The full story here: Destination X Ride: The Story
Todd is an extremely cool dude, a talented artist and designer, plus we both share a love of the TV Show Mad Men (Todd used to work in advertising, so he always had an interesting perspective for me to consider).
These are the things I think of first when I hang out with him, so sometimes it’s easy for me to forget that he’s been battling a disease that runs in his family for most of his life (Todd suffers complications from inoperable desmoid tumors, as well as the cumulative effects of multiple major surgeries over his lifetime).
For the past couple of years, he’s been talking about doing a ride, a special ride across the country to raise more awareness for the disease that he and many others suffer from.
This idea was inspired by a video series I had been watching, Long Way Round, which was created by Ewan McGregor and his friend Charlie Boorman. In the program, they wanted to ride motorcycles around the world. Along the way, they also supported UNICEF and other causes. BMW and many equipment companies backed their effort. They also did a follow up program called Long Way Down, in which they rode from London to the southern tip of Africa.
So, I had the big idea. Then it was time to give it a name. After some heavy pondering, Destination X Ride came to mind.
To that end, I helped him create his website Destination X Ride, as a method to begin that process (I only did the development on that one, Todd came up with the whole design scheme on it).
It’s funny how you can try so hard to get people to see your vision, but they just might not be capable of it. Todd has endured many setbacks and much rejection from people who either were dismissive or disdainful of the idea, so it felt good for both of us that someone else saw the value, saw the potential of this thing.
I remember getting that call from Todd one Saturday -he had just gotten off the phone with one of the top guys at Ducati North America. He’d seen Todd’s site, seen what he was trying to do. To paraphrase what Todd told me, his response was something to this effect:
“Can you get out to our dealership, or do we need to ship a bike to you?”
Ducati got it. They just got it, man.
Yes, you read that right. Ducati has decided to support me on my ride/adventure/journey/dream by supplying a Multistrada 1200 S Touring Edition. The bike is currently on it’s way from the Ducati North America Headquarters in Cupertino, CA to the Milwaukee Ducati Dealership where I will be picking it up. The Multistrada is the perfect bike for this ride. I cannot wait to meet her.
So they did indeed ship the bike. Here’s some images of the beauty itself. I’m not a motorcycle guy by any means (too cowardly) but this is a good looking machine:
And check out this triumphant video of him beginning the journey.
Ok, with my shaky iPhone videography it doesn’t look like much -but trust me, this is definitely the start of something.
Now Todd will travel across the country, stopping at various events and other places along the way. Not only that, but he’s looking to meet anyone who’d like to say hi as he drives through.
I’m pretty jealous, myself. I should just get in my car and drive across the country, too. Except it really wouldn’t be for anything. I’d just be a schlub driving across the country for no reason, I guess.
Yeah, scratch that.
Anyway, here’s more info on the route: Date set for DXRide to hit the road.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
So even though the big stuff is done, Todd still has to sweat the small stuff.
Ducati has provided him with the bike and with a full allotment of riding gear worth THOUSANDS of dollars. However, they aren’t covering his gas, food, or room and board expenses, which is completely fair seeing how much they’ve given already.
So in that case he’ll need help along the way. Remember how I said Todd’s a good designer, well check out these t-shirts and other stuff he comes up with:
Here’s the link to his full shop on Redbubble: Destination X Redbubble Shop.
If that sort of gear isn’t your style, and you’d still like to help, you can donate directly to Todd by using this PayPal Donate button:
Thanks so much for any help you can give! Excess donations will go to the chosen cause organizations at the end of the ride.
Keeping up with the ride!
Todd’s going to be posting and updating his ride progress periodically, so those of you who want to keep tabs on his adventures can do so here:
Destination X Ride blog: Main site, but may be reserve for longer, less frequent updates.
Destination X Ride Facebook page: Todd is usually most active here, so make sure to Like the page to keep abreast of the updates.
Follow Todd on Twitter: He’s getting more active on Twitter, so I’m going to be keeping on him about updating it, as I think it’s the perfect venue for the moment-to-moment stuff. I’ll be checking to see if he got an Instagram account going, too. If so I’ll post it back here and in my usual channels.
UPDATE: The first update of the ride is posted: Ride update No. 1 from Vail.
Thanks much for reading this, and if you can please spread this thing across the blogosphere and get the word out. I wish Todd all the best and I’m sure this is the start of some great things for him.
Until next time..!