i remember learning how to ride a bike--too scared to lift my feet off the ground, relying on my father's guiding hand to steady me, then rocking back and forth while in an attempt to stay upright. but failure would come in the form of a fall and i would cry and wish i had never gotten on such a monstrous beast. he made me go back and try. i would still fall, but things would get progressively better until i could ride the length of the street without toppling once.

i wish life was like riding a bicycle...that once you learned to fall you would be a master of the machine, choosing your ultimate destination.

you fall completely the first time, and no one is around to help you back up. where's that strong hand when you need it most? but you tell yourself, "hey--everyone falls the first time," and soon things begin to seem like that one time was just a mistake, your learning experience.

the second time catches you unaware because of this, and the fall is more violent--you scrape the bruises and the old wounds are re-opened.

every time after that makes you want to quit. but everyone falls, not just the first time, but time and time again. if we all weren't such a miserable lot none of us could survive...

when you have those dreams where you're flying, and you wake up just in time to catch yourself from hitting the ground, do you ever wonder what might've happened if you hadn't made it in time? falling is a wonderful feeling, but the oncoming earth is a frightening thought.

i used to fall a lot, always it seemed and.. there was so much hurt and cuts too deep to clean and i would retire to some distant corner of the universe to tend to wounds, i thought, might never heal.

i still fall. but now, i fall on someone, with someone, into someone.

life is nothing like a bicycle, amazingly so, and if it were i would be done with it as a whole. little bits of an existence seem similar, those things you can learn and never truly forget, but most often each fall is unique. it tosses me to some new, perfect for the moment place, even though sometimes it seems like i'd have preferred to have landed directly on my noggin'.

leap first, think later, but only some of the time. the fall is the easy part, of course, the landing can be beautifully painful, or you might just end up hurting your ass. either way, there always seems to be some little hand waving in the distance.. the one that will help you up, if you'll let it.. you just have to get to it first.

Also the line the crew of the Nebuchadnezzar keep repeating to each other when Morpheus and Neo are on the roof of a building in the loading program. The "leap of faith" trial is supposed to make it blatantly obvious to the newly awakened that the laws of reality truly do not apply any more....and by the same token, that they are still hung up on the laws they've been forced to deal with all their lives.

So you see, riding a bicycle for the first time is a lot like jumping from rooftop to rooftop in the matrix for the first time. Let's compare the simiarities:

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