Monday, December 22, 2008

Goodbye, Dear Buddy

I just learned of the unexpected passing of a dear friend of mine.

My friend Scott Derrick was quite a character. He had kind, joyful, and sarcastically-playful way about him. We met at a birthday party for a mutual friend (way back in 1974), and we hit it off well.

We did a lot of hell-raising and crazy stuff back in those days. When we were together, we were the very definition of Steve Martin's "wild and crazy guys." And for almost 10 years on every Sunday morning in the Fall, we would play full-on tackle football with our "Beer Football League" on the outdoor soccer fields by Albi Stadium. We did this until our poor bodies couldn't take the pain anymore, (and still get up and go to work on Monday). I'm going to miss not seeing him in the emergency of our usual post-game meeting places, (after consuming a few post-game beers at the bar & grill in River Ridge shopping center, of course).

We all had nicknames back then, and coincidentally, I was given the moniker "Bad Ben" for the first (and obviously not the last time). Not because I played football badly, but because I was a bad-ass on defense with quite the sacking record, and was a glutton for taking serious blocks and blind-sided hits, and just shaking them off. My offensive record was not so stellar...I wore glasses back then, and I would always take them off to play. As my (football card) description stated: "Ben has the eyesight of a cave-dwelling fish."

Scott always had a kind word for everybody. Even when his soon-to-be-ex-wife tried to run him over by driving her VW Scirocco in reverse across the football field, (while he was running his ass-off to keep from being killed)...all he said of the incident later was, "Patsy has gotten to be quite the driver! If I were to rob a bank, she'd be my first pick for a wheel man."

Kids loved Scott. Mainly because he always had that kid-like quality about him. Just one look at his smiling face, and kids knew that this guy was a Fun Factory, ever ready to climb a tree or pantomine some crazy gag that would make them laugh their heads off.

Even though Scott and I haven't talked much since I moved away from Spokane, we always knew that we were "out there" and available for each other as friends. I'm going to miss him dearly, but I'll remember his gentle soul fondly.

DERRICK, Kevin Scott
(Age 54)
Scott was born June 23, 1954, in Spokane and died December 11, 2008, in Spokane. He attended Hutton and Wilson elementary schools, Sacajawea Junior High School and Lewis and Clark High School. He graduated from LC in 1972. Scott worked many years for Bestway Fuel and Spray. He formerly owned the Running Iron Tavern on North Freya and was co-owner of Chili Headz Restaurant in Spokane Valley. Scott had special mechanical skills and was known for his outgoing nature. We will miss his entertaining stories. Scott enjoyed cars, fishing, Montana, Christmas, the New England Patriots, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the cartoon character Bill the Cat. His dad, former sportswriter Merle Derrick, was his hero. Merle spent his final years living under Scott's care. Scott was preceded in death by his father; mother, VonzaaStoker; and grandmother Eva Stoker, who had a special kinship with him. He is survived by children Zak and Heather Derrick, of Spokane; siblings Mike Derrick and Chris (Denise) Derrick, of Spokane, Kerri (Craig) Day, of Spring, Texas, Staci (Rich) Schipanski, of Bothell, WA, and Shelli (Jay) Schindler, of Vancouver, WA; former wife P.J.Derrick, of Spokane; stepchildren Janine (Kirk)Worthington, Nicolle Burgess and Bradley Burgess, all of Spokane; stepgrandsons Anthony, Justin,Josiah and Joshua; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts and uncles. Private services are pending. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Spokane.
Published on 12/21/2008

Sub-Zero WyCo Run

Me, on the WyCo Triangle section of trail...bundled-up to the max.
Photo credit: Jim Megerson

Six of us ran Sunday in the nine-below-zero weather at WyCo Lake Park. The windchill was minus-20.

Jim and I ran about 12 miles with some extra bushwhacking: following the cougar tracks that were following the deer tracks (for fun).

Kyle and Caleb did some Super Speedy Nerd Mileage and hill repeats.

Beth and (newbie) Brett did a Turtle out-and-back.

It was a beautiful morning.

Happy trails,
Bad Ben

A natural spring in the side of a hill.
Photo credit: Jim Megerson

Life finds a way...a sub-climate eco-system in a stream.
Photo credit: Jim Megerson

Monday, December 01, 2008

Dude, Where's the Trail (and Heat)?

Yesterday, I had quite the run at the Dude, Where's the Trail 50K.
This race has a lot of woodsy bushwhacking, running through tall grass, and orienteering involved...hence the name.
This year, we had snow and steady strong winds to contend with. It's normally a very beautiful run, but with the snow it was even prettier.

I was developing a cold prior to the race, and it's in full-swing, right now. I bruised my right heel last week, and it's a little ragged today. I'm feeling pretty good (considering), other than that. Lou Joline's races are "quirky," but always a lot of fun. You get a lot of bang for the buck with Lou's races.

I'll let the photos tell the story. See the rest of Dick Ross' photos.