One of the best things about being an embedded reporter during the AIDS LifeCycle ride was how I was reminded of the difference between humility and humiliation. And this was one of those moments. Dinner in camp on day whatever. Andrew Uhl, the webmaster who was handling all our Media Team stories for the Experience the Event page, had been given the Tiara and matching earrings the day before for his diligent work and it had become an honor passed from peer to peer as we supported each other. Andrew liked a photo-essay I'd put together on The Riders and Their Loves Ones and one afternoon he just trucked up to me and handed me the Tiara.
Well, now - I've never worn a Tiara in my life. Never had the inclination. The closest I came was in 1968 when my parents wanted to throw me this huge "coming out" debutante party in Washington DC with a rich "godmother" who was apparently prominent in the DC social world. Since my father had been a colonel in the Air Force, they wanted to fly in Air Force Academy cadets to stand in full uniform, swords drawn to provide an archway under which me and some boy were supposed to walk and emerge into - what? It was 1968, for gawd's sake and I was already smoking pot and protesting the war! I scoffed at the idea. I wouldn't be caught anywhere near that world!