Item description for Riding with the Blue Moth by Bill Hancock...
After the death of his son, Will, in the 2001 airplane crash that took the lives of nine additional members of the Oklahoma State basketball team and support staff, survival became a common word in Bill Hancock's vocabulary. Bicycling was simply the method by which he chose to distract himself from his grief. But for Hancock, the 2,747-mile journey from the Pacific Coast to the Atlantic Coast became more than just a distraction. It became a pilgrimage, even if Hancock didn't realize it upon dipping his rear tire in the Pacific Ocean near Huntington Beach, California in the wee hours of a July morning. On his two-wheel trip, Hancock battled searing heat and humidity, curious dogs, unforgiving motorists and the occasional speed bump-usually a dead armadillo. Hancock's thoughts returned to common themes: memories of his son Will, the prospect of life without Will for him and his wife, and the blue moth of grief and depression. That pesky moth fluttered around Hancock as if he was a beaming lamp pole in an empty parking lot. Some suggested Hancock cope with medication; others suggested he get back to his job as director of the NCAA men's basketball tournament as soon as possible. But, Hancock found himself a glutton for his own punishment, unable to shake that blue moth from shadowing him on each step of his everyday routine. So, Hancock chose to battle the beast one-on-one, taking the moth on the ride of its life across America in the hopes of shaking free of its constraints. Possibly, he could lose it around a corner in one of the small towns he would traverse through: Hope, Arizona; Chickasha, Oklahoma; Onward, Mississippi; Pleasant Hill, Georgia. On a muggy August morn, Hancock dipped his front wheel into the Atlantic Ocean along the Georgia coastline of Tybee Island. The bothersome blue moth was still loitering nearby. But, by completion of the trek, the pest had taken on a new role for Hancock. The blue moth wouldn't be drowned in either ocean, or in the buckets of perspiration that Hancock shed along the highways of this country. He was with Hancock for the longer haul, and for once Hancock was okay with that.
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Studio: Sports Publishing
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9" Width: 6" Height: 1.1" Weight: 1.15 lbs.
Release Date Oct 31, 2005
Publisher Sports Publishing
ISBN 1596701048 ISBN13 9781596701045
Availability 0 units.
More About Bill Hancock
Bill Hancock is married with two grown sons and a teenaged daughter, Erin. He has been hunting and fishing all over Texas for over 40 years. Bill has hunted and fished from Jacksonville to the Laguna Madre to Laredo and from Liberty to Odessa. The challenges of hunting public lands is a rewarding experience and he can be found hunting duck, dove, turkey, deer, teal, Sandhill Cranes and other game animals. He also kayaks and fishes both freshwater and saltwater with Erin and his wife, Karen. Erin is his primary hunting partner and official biographer, who never fails to tell stories of his most embarrassing outdoors moments. She is also the primary skinner and heavy gear porter. Karen is the official game chef and nurse. Bill is an army veteran and former Austin police detective. He currently resides in west Texas.
Reviews - What do customers think about Riding with the Blue Moth?
Inspirational Book!!! May 15, 2008
This is one of the most inspirational books I have ever read--in part b/c it was not written to be that. Bill Hancock's message is so simple...appreciate life. Appreciate the good times because they are good. Appreciate the bad times, because they alone can help you realize the good, and both are part of who you are. He should be commended for his tenacity to stay the course, both his journey in life and cross country biking!! I wish I could thank him in person for sharing his story.
Getting through tragedy Jan 7, 2008
I originally bought this book for friends who lost their 16 year old son in an accident. This last year I bought it for myself and read it. If you have recently suffered the loss of a loved one it is very difficult to get through the first chapter where the author details the loss of his son and the immediate reactions of the family and friends. After the first chapter the book moves into the difficult ups and downs of getting on with every day life with while being gripped by overwhelming grief. There are so many places in this book where the author is able to put incredible perspective on what most people would consider ordinary events. Whether you've suffered the loss of a loved one or not, you will read this book and look at people and things differently than you did before. I hope that I am a better friend to people who suffered a loss because of the understanding this book gives the reader. I found myself disappointed as I was nearing the end, because the book was so well written that I wanted to keep on going with Bill Hancock beyond his cross country bike ride. I "googled" the author and contacted him by e-mail to tell him why I had bought 2 copies of the book and how much it meant to me after reading it. He responded the next day with a very thoughtful e-mail. I highly recommend reading Riding With the Blue Moth by Bill Hancock.
It's not about the bike; well, really it is!! Mar 17, 2007
Ooops; that is the title of another book out there; but it's still true and I think this is a fairly good book to accompany the book by Lance Armstrong which details Lance's fight with cancer. Both of these fellows having to deal with tragic situations.
The author goes through my home town; so I was fairly bent on not giving him 5 stars just because he did that in his journey from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic; but I am a cyclist; and I came to think after reading it, this is rather darn good; although, just like some characters that Bill describes, I've gone through some hardship, to the point that it was not easy to concentrate and read this; but I did.
March Madness; the NCAA tournament also, is underway as I write this for the year 2007; you know, it is in a tiny bit of a way a basketball book, seeing how Hancock is involved and connected with the NCAA; and it's things like that, that make this a good book to read. Now, I say this, because I believe the basketball fan could well find this entertaining too; but of course, not a basketball book like say, for example; the book "Pistol" that is currently in the stores.
But I'll keep this short and to the point; I like Dean Karnazes book, The UltraMarathon Man; but I read that and think, I wish Dean gave out more info on his running, diet, etc.
Bill Hancock for some reason, gives a lot of detail, the basic facts of his road trip on a daily basis; I mean saying part of his diet was on any given day, "17 Fritos or 12 Cheezits, 2 gallons of water and a gallon of gatorade" is detail I've never seen anyone relate about before; some of the chapters even has a bit of a question and answer session via email where Bill is asked questions and he gives back answers about his trip. So, it definitely has a real diary quality about it and it is the attention to detail that makes me give it the high ranking; cycling detail but of course the book is much more.
A solid enough book, I like his descriptions of many geographic locales; such as Yarnell hill; I had to look up that mountain on the internet I was so curious; or the Wichita Mountains of Oklahoma.
Glad to see the positive reviews for this book; but most of them are rather short to gather people's impressions. I decided to make mine a bit longer. A fine contribution to cycling literature.
ALONG FOR THE RIDE Jan 9, 2007
I felt like I was along for the ride with Bill Hancock in "Riding With the Blue Moth", experiencing the emotional highs and lows, chuckling at the amusing experiences he had along the way, and shedding more than a few tears. Nothing strikes fear into the heart of a parent more than the prospect of losing a child. The Hancocks experienced every parent's nightmare and the healing of the cross-country bicycle ride was great both for the reader and, I suspect, for the author as well. I highly recommend this book to anyone, but especially to anyone who has lost an offspring or is close to someone who has.
Moved Emotionally Like No Other Book! May 16, 2006
I've been reading this book at night for a week now. I shed tears nearly every night, and find myself at the bedside of one or both of my kids thanking God for the privilege I have of being their Dad. This book has almost become a devotional for me. The depth of the writing is stunning.... My prayers are with you Bill and Nicki. Thank you for letting us glimpse enough of your pain so that we can better treasure all that it means to Live.