The mere act of delivering china, however, was not what really prepared me for road racing. I used to hang around a corner where there were some older sicklers. For my special benefit they would brag about sliding the hind wheel around corners in the dirt roads of San Diego. To me, accustomed to my rigid upright position of riding, this was quite a feat and, of course, those fellows being heroes to me, there was nothing to do but practice that rear wheel sliding. At first I used to practice on the way back from a delivery and needless to say I took many spills. Finally, after having slid around nearly every dirt corner in San Diego, either on the seat of my pants or the back of my neck, I got so I could take a $75 set of china, at least, and broadside right up to the customer’s front door. Broadsiding with a $150 set was too much of a gamble even for my youthful imagination. Having polished off this art to my own satisfaction, and I now suspect even to the surprise of my heroes, they decided to really make a motorcycle rider out of me. So, they began talking about sliding the front wheel around the corner. That was really what made a messenger boy out of me. At the cost of much skin and china I practiced the front wheel sliding act and gradually worked my way right out of the china business into a new job. I could carry a special delivery letter, and slide both wheels, with Uncle Sam not nearly so worried as had been my previous employer.