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A Good Thumping 

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No one can escape the excitement leading up to the Pole, Pedal, Paddle in Bend. And the bar was no exception. Our sites were set high on beating our bitter rival, Thump Coffee. One might think that after my last experience at the PPP, I would never return to compete, but alas I relented.

Three years ago, my husband and I tackled the challenge. We were sporty, in good shape and avid outdoorsmen; how could we not battle in Bend's ultimate contest? Brad was off to a swift start and came quickly down the mountain to jump right into the skate ski. Neither of us skate skied, but figured "how hard can it be?" As we began screaming at one another because Brad couldn't get his boot into the rental ski bindings, I recognized that we didn't have a damn clue what we were doing. Brad kept the skis on for about 10 minutes when he figured he'd be faster in an ungainly snow jog as bright yellow spandex whisked by. For over an hour, I stood patiently at my bike with cold cramped feet and an attitude that greatly improved once it occurred to me to wait in the car. A loud knock and a wicked scowl scared me onto the bike where I pedaled swiftly down the mountain and got to the run where my legs were jello. For the first mile I could barely stand much less run and I had to piss like a racehorse so all I could focus on was finding some sort of privacy. I tagged Brad at the paddle, where he paddled the entire length in a six-foot creek boat with perfect strokes as school children with upside-down paddles passed him in 17-foot race boats. By the time I got to the sprint, the damage had been done. We knew that we hadn't been competitive, but when we saw our names last in our class, we had to admit to the world that we were losers.


And so again this year I stood at the board to find that we were beat. So congratulations Thump, you thumped our ass.

The Thump

2.5 ounces boiling water

1.8 grams (one package) powdered gelatin

2 oz espresso

2.5 oz coffee liqueur

Briskly whisk powdered gelatin into boiling water. Add espresso and coffee liqueur. Pour into mold and chill.

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