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5th June 2013

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Suicide Note of Marco Pantani
You will read this after, so I want you to know I was happiest on the bike.
For all of my memory I felt the most at home
With my feet on the pedals and the world moving around me.
The perfume of grease,
mentholated embrocation
and the heat in my legs.

We saw the movie in the small cinema in Cesenatico,
Disney’s little elephant who could fly.
I flew away on my bike that afternoon,
A boy’s eyes wet with tears of humiliation.
The harder I pedaled,
The higher I flew,

I learned to use my skills,
To fly above my hurt,
You called me hero, but I heard only taunts.
Pedal harder.
You called me campione.
Pedal harder.
You called me cheater.
Pedal harder.

I’m sorry, but I could not pedal every hour of every day.
I could not keep those thoughts
From my sleep.
So I filled my hours with tricks to stop the endless chatter of
God and family. Sin and redemption. My face in the mirror.
My imperfections magnified.
Pedal harder.

I held the biggest prize above my head
My heart was full of joy and peace.
My mother and father wept at my achievement.
But by the next dawn I was filled again with shame.
Pedal harder.
And when the next prize was taken
Just hours from my grasp
All was black inside
And I could only recoil from the light.
They wanted to punish me,
But I was already in prison.

I fought back, of course.
To be my own superhero,
A Pirate, a criminal beloved for his audacity.
Accepted as flawed. Accepted.
But I could not accept myself. 
I cut away at my face,
but I could not slice into my disfigured soul.

Do not think it was all for nothing.
There is so much that I cherish.
Thank you, my dear friends,
For your hands reaching out for my slippery fingers.
I did see your signs on the climbs,
My name in fresh paint that clung to my tires.
I appreciated your hands on the small of my back,
The cool water spilled down my neck.
A million roadside kindnesses over the years,
Grazie. Grazie. Goodbye.

It is not so bad to be an Elephantino.
I just wanted to be a boy.


Previously published in Dirt Rag magazine.

Shared with me via @kevmosaic

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Suicide Note of Marco Pantani
You will read this after, so I want you to know I was happiest on the bike.
For all of my memory I felt the most at home
With my feet on the pedals and the world moving around me.
The perfume of grease,
mentholated embrocation
and the heat in my legs.

We saw the movie in the small cinema in Cesenatico,
Disney’s little elephant who could fly.
I flew away on my bike that afternoon,
A boy’s eyes wet with tears of humiliation.
The harder I pedaled,
The higher I flew,

I learned to use my skills,
To fly above my hurt,
You called me hero, but I heard only taunts.
Pedal harder.
You called me campione.
Pedal harder.
You called me cheater.
Pedal harder.

I’m sorry, but I could not pedal every hour of every day.
I could not keep those thoughts
From my sleep.
So I filled my hours with tricks to stop the endless chatter of
God and family. Sin and redemption. My face in the mirror.
My imperfections magnified.
Pedal harder.

I held the biggest prize above my head
My heart was full of joy and peace.
My mother and father wept at my achievement.
But by the next dawn I was filled again with shame.
Pedal harder.
And when the next prize was taken
Just hours from my grasp
All was black inside
And I could only recoil from the light.
They wanted to punish me,
But I was already in prison.

I fought back, of course.
To be my own superhero,
A Pirate, a criminal beloved for his audacity.
Accepted as flawed. Accepted.
But I could not accept myself.
I cut away at my face,
but I could not slice into my disfigured soul.

Do not think it was all for nothing.
There is so much that I cherish.
Thank you, my dear friends,
For your hands reaching out for my slippery fingers.
I did see your signs on the climbs,
My name in fresh paint that clung to my tires.
I appreciated your hands on the small of my back,
The cool water spilled down my neck.
A million roadside kindnesses over the years,
Grazie. Grazie. Goodbye.

It is not so bad to be an Elephantino.
I just wanted to be a boy.


Previously published in Dirt Rag magazine.

Shared with me via @kevmosaic

Tagged: cyclingmarco pantanigirotdfpro cycling

  1. niqyp reblogged this from embrocationcycling
  2. somethingtacky reblogged this from hbstache
  3. ramuntxo reblogged this from hbstache
  4. jasonfhongkong reblogged this from wannabe-italian and added:
    Marco Pantani……………………2004/2/14 forever young
  5. ridelikeafatkid reblogged this from th1rdlegend
  6. th1rdlegend reblogged this from twowheelitalophile
  7. jokerilciclista reblogged this from wannabe-italian
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  10. tunedbywoodie reblogged this from bikeintheshop
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  13. fitza1 reblogged this from bikeintheshop
  14. albert-is reblogged this from benadryoze and added:
    This man was a fucking monster on a bike and this was fucking beautiful and tragic to read. Eyes watered up.
  15. funnybadger reblogged this from bikeintheshop
  16. benadryoze reblogged this from bikeintheshop
  17. pickaxetoyouranus reblogged this from bikeintheshop
  18. bikeintheshop reblogged this from embrocationcycling
  19. iyanskywalker reblogged this from hbstache and added:
    Commemorate to the great legendary el pirata Marco Pantani.
  20. grassmc reblogged this from grassmc and added:
    grande Marco per sempre!
  21. benorsam reblogged this from hbstache
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