A Story From The Street

by Travis Mateer

I like to think my bullshit detector is pretty good, having developed this internal assessment mechanism over the seven years I worked at the shelter.

Did I hear some crazy shit? Yes, of course. Mental illness is a very common denominator with the clientele I used to work with. But every once I’d hear something that sounded crazy, but felt like it could be true.

These days my interactions are a little different, since I’m on the streets as a journalist instead of a service provider, but I still listen to stories in a manner that doesn’t immediately discount what the person is saying, even if it sounds crazy. That’s how I met the alleged grandson of Norris Bradbury yesterday.

Who is Norris Bradbury? Well, maybe you’ve heard about the project he worked on. It was called the Manhattan Project.

And here’s a bit from Norris’ Wikipedia page:

Norris Edwin Bradbury (May 30, 1909 – August 20, 1997), was an American physicist who served as director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory for 25 years from 1945 to 1970. He succeeded Robert Oppenheimer, who personally chose Bradbury for the position of director after working closely with him on the Manhattan Project during World War II. Bradbury was in charge of the final assembly of “the Gadget”, detonated in July 1945 for the Trinity test.

Now, with that established, who is Norris’ grandson? Well, to the average Missoulian, the guy I met this week is just a scruffy looking homeless dude on a bicycle; a guy who might not be believed when he claims it’s NOT POSSIBLE that it was a seizure from alcohol withdrawal that put him in the ICU last fall.

And why is it not possible? I’m not going to get into that right now, except to say I was shown convincing documentation that backs up his story.

Instead of getting into the details of that case, here’s another thing about this story that checks out (and subsequently heightened the synchronicity factor for me). Norris’ Bradbury’s grandson once built FAST bikes in a town I lived in (Colorado Springs) and used a word I’ve been increasingly interested in (Manitou).

This just keeps getting weirder and weirder. From the link:

Doug Bradbury founded Manitou in 1986 and began building Aluminum mountain bikes in his shop in Colorado Springs. While mountain bikes, and even aluminum mountain bikes were not brand new at that time Doug went at it from a slightly different vantage point and applied his background in trials motorcycle riding to develop his own style of bikes. He was trying to get the bike to perform like a motorcycle. He’d ride the bike/motorcycle on the same trails. Kept losing the line on the bikes and so he wanted something stronger that would hold the line and do what it was asked of by the rider.

I’ll leave it there, for now, but trust me when I say there’s a lot more to this story.

Thanks for reading!

UPDATE: oddly enough the subject of this post is NOT the same Doug Bradbury who developed the Manitou brand, although the person I spoke with DID live in Colorado Springs for a bit, and he DID race motorcycles. Strange.

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A Story From The Street

  1. Pingback: Why Are Missoula Police Targeting This Homeless Man? And How Will The Mill Levy Help Lorenna Next Time She’s Homeless? | Zoom Chron Blog

  2. Pingback: My Family History With Unidentified Flying Objects And The Space Program | Zoom Chron Blog

Leave a Reply