Larger Than Life Award
History of the “Larger Than Life” Award (aka the “Blue Banana”)
In its early days, our sacred PBA blue banana was a completely innocent object. After all, it was designed merely to hold a banana for a cyclist to eat at a rest stop. However, in its journey to becoming a symbol of “larger than life,” it quickly lost its innocence. Alas, it found itself in the hands of a group of PBA “ladies” who very aptly called themselves the Vixens!
It all happened at a festive Christmas holiday gathering of said ladies at the home of Sharon Dickson in 2006. A merry “Yankee Swap” gift exchange had just been completed with the help of just a wee bit of wine. One of the lucky ladies was left holding the blue banana holder that had been contributed by Nancy Riedl. Great hilarity resulted with all sorts of suggestions on how one could best use this banana holder. It boggled the mind! It definitely was not going to be used for its original intention. It quickly became just the “blue banana.” And its implications were just too good not to be shared with a wider audience!
Our annual PBA party was scheduled for January 2007. Perfect! A plan was hatched to present this now not-so-innocent blue banana to a person in the Club whose personality was larger than life. The one stipulation was that it must be passed on each year to a new recipient. The Vixens started off the chain that year by awarding the Larger Than Life Blue Banana to Steve Marino. Those of you who remember Steve will understand why he was chosen. He passed the banana on to George Markus in 2008. I do realize that thinking of George as being larger than life is a stretch. In 2009 George decided that the time had come for a woman to receive the banana. His choice was Maggie Johns, and anyone who has ridden with Maggie knows all about her whoo-hoos at the top of every hill. She passed the banana on to Warren Casteel in 2010—another very good choice. In 2011 Warren’s recipient was a fairly new kid on the block named John Evans. We have all since learned without a doubt that John is no shrinking violet. And this year in 2012, the torch was passed on to Lori Maucieri who keeps us all entertained with her irreverent ride log comments about her riding and her family.
The Passing of the Blue Banana has turned into a very fun PBA tradition that will hopefully continue for many more years. Who will be next? Take care in 2012 . . . It may be YOU!