Stu Speaks
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Bike riding

Sat, 2008-05-31 18:00

I don’t remember learning to ride my bike. I am sure my dad or mom helped. I do remember my first real bike though. A purple chopper. One of my most vivid memories of being a child was my father taking me to get a new seat for it, one of the cool ones. Just like a real chopper motorcycle. I can see myself clipping my hockey cards on the spokes so that my bike would make that perfect sound, like I was really ridin’ a hog. Such a great memory.

I do remember teaching my first daughter to ride her bike. My hand on the seat. Running with her, letting go and then she would wobble a little, then a lot and then in the end fall, cry a little and want to quit. We wouldn’t though, I would always say to her, as I have with the next two kids, “If you fall off, get back up, wipe of the dirt and try again.”

I can see her just as vividly, that moment when I would run along behind her and let go and she didn’t fall. I would keep up with her not holding on. Then suddenly, I would slow down. She would ride along farther ahead by herself, tassles on the end of handle bars flowing in the wind, silver, pink, red. She would sail, I would stop. My eyes glazed over a little as this moment would be the first of many, those moments where you have to let go and let your child grow, help hoist the jib sail and let her ride the waves of life that lay ahead. To chart her own course.

The key with life is no different than the key to riding a bicycle. You fall off, you get back up. Does it hurt to fall, yes and in the the case of a bike it can hurt a lot complete with bruises and blood. The moment though that you get it, the pain is gone… forgotten. Soon you ride with your hands behind your head, as if on a unicycle. With ease and grace.

Today is my day 6. I have fallen a little here and little there but for the large majority of it I have pushed through. The best part is it’s getting easier. Life’s like that, some call it “the secret”, I call it bike riding. Nothing can beat that feeling of the wind in your hair, the sun on your face and the speed you get up going down a hill. It is truly brilliant.

Live your days that way. Be the Lance Armstrong of your life. Peddle hard, fall… but get back up. I will.

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  • Stu Speaks

    Students were very engaged, enthusiastic and excited. Stu is hilarious…seriously. “Humour is never a bad thing” said one student.

    ~Annalisa Varano - Vice Principal - St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Secondary School
  • Stu Speaks

    They say a great presenter “leaves them wanting more”. Well, we loved your presentation and the entire team asked me when you will be back! You are truly STUpendous!

    ~Nancy Klensch - Founder of Summit Kids
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu is an energetic, entertaining and dynamic presenter. He captures is audiences’ attention and keeps the room engaged for the entire presentation! His stories in his presentation captures everyone at different points, even the teachers!

    ~Sara Meaney - Cobourg Collegiate Institute
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu was great! Staff and students felt it really broke the anxiety in the building and we even got cupcakes today from one of the students.

    ~Carrie Rowlandson - William Aberhart High School, Calgary Alberta
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu was fantastic. There is nothing better than seeing 600 adolescents laughing their heads off. He delivers a terrific message and has the entire audience engaged, thinking, listening and most importantly laughing within seconds, and he keeps it going for over an hour. Thanks again on behalf of the Shores!!

    ~Doug Woods - Vice Principal, Nantyr Shores Secondary School
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu’s speech did exactly what I hoped it would do when I tried to bring him in: it brought the school together for a good laugh while empowering the student body to be the change they wish to see in their classroom. I feel he hit this goal perfectly.

    ~Steven Fotheringham - Oakville Trafalgar High School
  • Stu Speaks

    I really liked how the speech really just seemed like Stu was telling us funny stories, but he always related it back to the overall message. It didn’t sound like a speech at all, it was as if he was just talking to the crowd. I would say that he is excellent in connecting with the audience and keeping them entertained. There was not a two minute period in Stu’s speech were nobody was laughing. He kept us amused throughout the entire presentation. I thought he was perfect.

    ~James Palloto
  • Stu Speaks

    I would highly recommend Stu, his engaging personality was a real hook for the students and his messages were ones that many of them could identify with. The humour was great and the students shared that they enjoyed the presentation.

    ~Teresa Fowler - W.H. Croxford High School, Airdrie, Alberta
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu is personable. Students are willing to listen to him. They enjoy listening to him. He has a message, but he is also entertaining. He is fun to listen to and students don’t feel talked down to or preached at.

    ~Tanya Lacey - McKinnon Park Secondary School, Caledonia, ON
  • Stu Speaks

    I was at the OCA conference on May 6th, and I just wanted to thank you on being such a wicked keynote… you definitely put me back in the camp mindset and reminded me of what’s truly important about the up-coming summer. Once again, a job very well done.

    ~Emily Summers
  • Stu Speaks

    The students really enjoyed Stu’s humour and low-key but critical message about getting involved and getting the most out of their High School experience. I would recommend Stu as a speaker who relates well to students, is funny, and gets the message out without preaching.

    Thank you,

    ~Lynn Toye