Most people called to cancel saying that work and other things had got in the way. Undaunted Jen and I figured it would become a date night of sorts and we loaded up and were on our way around 4:50. Dan was there and anxious to learn which way we would be heading tonight? I decided to take our small group of three out to Johnny’s Place in Dearborn adjacent to the Ford Rouge Plant so that they could met the owner and see for themselves what a local factory pub was really all about!
Canfield west over the Lodge turns into Buchanan Street which is fast becoming our favorite Midtown Westerly trail. Jen had never been before and was a little surprised by the prairies and meadows that have turned fallow and are consuming the old and odd abandoned architecture. Turning south we found that we missed the northern entry to Patton Park and found ourselves sorely tempted to enter into Woodmere Cemetery. Flowing west and on by we made our way onto Dearborn street were we turned right and made our way North up to Eagle Street. Another quick right and we landed.
We and our bikes were welcomed in as usual. We were warmly greeted by Johnny and he asked were big Mike was? I told him that he was at his daughter’s softball game tonight and we both agreed that family is more important. As we sat down at the bar a fellow in his mid 50’s started to crack off like a young rooster. I said to myself, “not another Freer Bar incident please”? Once this guy found out that I was a Ford owner he backed off a bit. Next thing we know he is up off his seat, walking out on the main floor to deliver his speech on Buggery! Full of F’s and others he went on and on about what he does to his wife. Jens mouth was open in disbelief as she gave me one of those looks like why and the hell did you bring me to this place; I thought you said it was a friendly nice pub?
As he sat back down on his stool I quipped that a Gentleman would perhaps not speak of such things out in public and further more he might consider what his wife’s true interests were before conducting himself as earlier described? A few minutes of disbelief went by and the next thing I see is a guy in his mid fifties walking into the bar, barking, spinning around and then turning to come straight on at this guy. BAM he put everything he had into his over hand right and as he was summoning up the blow he made mention, “Don’t you ever disrespect my family like that again”! Pow right in the mouth! Mr. Loud Mouth sort of slumped down on top of the bar and the guy that threw the punch, spun into the adjacent wall as a by-product of his efforts. I was up immediately putting myself between them and Jen. The guy that through the punch found his footing quickly and exited stage right just as fast as he had entered in. All we could think is that instant karma just paid this fellow a visit and that perhaps next time he might think before he professes his philosophy again?
Needless to say we were gone next and back onto the bike for a trip into Patton Park as we made our way back home. Snaking through and in and around we found a virgin group of white oaks and a picnic table were we took in a few minutes of good conversation. From there on we found ourselves on Selden Street and once across I-96 we rode our bikes by the Ferguson Academy for Young Girls. For those of you not informed, this school and its students are the subject of the award winning documentary titled ‘Grown in Detroit’. The documentary inspired me to take up the study and in turn create the ROI Urban Farm Concept. As we rode past the school I was blessed with an epiphany. My Idealism was nothing more than a trumped up form of narcissism which in most cases is simply unrealistic. With a glaring view from Dan and a wry smile from Jen, the message from above finally hit home! Al Fields I now finally understand what you were saying about our goal for future employees with regards to the Owen Park Urban Farm Hub.
The long and the short of it is that the journey of growth is never over and as long as you surround yourself with good friend’s eventually one day you will come to see your shortcomings in the cathedral of the church of the rolling wheel.
Bike Detroit! J. Meyers bike explorer