Dear Ade

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 December 2009

Categories:

Dear Ade

Dear Ade

Okay okay, I admit it, cycling is pretty fun. I'm converted, so apologies for taking the piss out of your lycra all this time. It's taught me quite a lot about myself:

1. I'm quite unfit
2. Wales is beautiful, but the road surfaces are shocking
3. Wind is my enemy
4. I prefer going down hills to going up hills
5. I love Italian engineering
6. I like my own company
7. I prefer to ride to mellow music
8. I'm never going to win any races
9. Most drivers are clueless towards bikes
10 There really is a point to clip-in shoes

So, in short, I'm really glad I got the bike... So when are you going to come and try skateboarding?

Yours sincerely,
Pete
(converted skater)

P.s. You still won't catch me wearing lycra

Super Nice

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 December 2009

Categories:

Super Nice

Super Nice
Nice is boring.
Super Nice is strangely interesting.

Nice is a stroll in the park.
Super Nice is a ride through the forest.

Nice is a ‘thank you’.
Super Nice is a gift of home-made pepparkakor.

Nice is neat and tidy.
Super Nice is covered in mud.

Nice is a pleasant chortle.
Super Nice is laughing until you get cramp.

So long, nice.
Hello Super Nice.

Why I ride

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 December 2009

Why I ride
Snowboarding to me is not just a sport, it’s a way of life. There is nothing more exhilarating than riding down a mountain at speed. The adrenalin rush is amazing, whether it be riding at speed, hitting a kicker or mastering the technicality of the halfpipe, the feeling is amazing. I love the people involved in snowboarding. It is like no other sport. Despite the fact that we enter competitions to compete against each other we are all stoked when someone is riding well. When I managed to get through to my first World Cup final, there was a massive cheer from the rest of the competitors. That’s a great feeling. The mountains also make a magnificent backdrop for the sport. There is never a morning when you feel like staying in bed. If it was not for the weather and having to give my body a rest, I would ride every day.

Ben Kilner

Ben is the British Halfpipe Champion and in February 2010 will represent Great Britain in the Vancouver Olympic snowboarding events.

Find your inner Sven

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 December 2009

Categories:

Find your inner Sven

Find your inner Sven
The Swedes make great explorers. Their long dark winters might well be the reason. Växjö in the south got just 22 minutes of sunlight a couple of Decembers back. Phew.

Enough to make even die-hards pack their bags.

One of Sweden’s finest explorers was Sven Hedin. Back in the early 1900s he discovered the Trans Himalayan mountain range (crossing it eight times, once disguised as a Buddhist pilgrim), unearthed parts of the Great Wall of China and located the sources of Asia’s biggest rivers.

He was also an accomplished photographer, geographer and illustrator – meticulously recording everything from mountain heights to native plant strains and animal species. On one expedition he even measured the dimensions of all his camels.

Even today his notes (there are, appropriately, mountains of them) help interpret satellite images of central Asia. But his motivation wasn’t cash or fame (although in 1977 Volkswagen did name a camper van after him). 

It was that nobody had ever set eyes on these places before. The vast blank spaces on the map marked ‘unexplored’ were just waiting to be filled-in. 

So what’s left for the Sven Hedins of tomorrow? Well, and this is oddly comforting, there’s actually quite a bit. Vast African deserts, Congolese jungles and swamps, polar islands and plenty of unclimbed mountains – Tibet’s Gangkhar Puensum possibly being the highest. 


So if this winter starts getting you down, maybe you should go and do a bit of exploring yourself.

Chris Boddy

Illustration: Alex Robbins

Give a man a loaf of bread

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 December 2009

Categories:

Give a man a loaf of bread

Give a man a loaf of bread
Give a man a loaf of bread and you feed him for a day.


Teach him to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.


But give him a loaf of bread and some fish fingers and he can make fish finger butties.

You got there

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 December 2009

Categories:

You got there

You got there
Try walking down the street when everyone else is going the other
way. Bummer. People tread on your toes. They barge. They mutter,
they tut, they glare. But when you get through, when you pop out into 

the sunlight, it feels pretty good. There’s space. There’s no muttering.
You can breathe easy. You got there.

Bad moods get lost in the woods

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 September 2009

Born too early to die old

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 September 2009

Categories:

Born too early to die old

Born too early to die old
Getting up early used to be difficult.

But I think I read somewhere that the older you get, the earlier you wake up. Which gets you thinking that as you age, there’s something nagging away at you, telling you to make the most of things.

Then I read another thing. It said that somewhere on Earth, a person has been born who will live to be 200 years old. Technology and medicine will align in future years, and give us the power to treat an increasing number of ailments. So there’s a man or woman out there who will still be alive in 2209.

Seems like quite a way away. 200 whole years. Think back 200 years. What would the person born in 1809 make of 2009? Everyone walking around with Bluetooth headsets, riding on their Segways, wearing shoes with plastic bubbles in the heel.

I was born in 1973. And I’m guessing that if I’m still around in 2073 I’ll be doing pretty well. You will note that I have counted myself out of the race to be 200 man (or woman). I was born a little late, and anyway, I have a feeling that Model 200 Man (or Woman) will have been born in Japan (something to do with all of that green tea and clean Mount Fuji air). I’ve got the wrong geography.

But I reckon I can squeeze some extra days out of my allotted time. And I think it has something to do with getting up early. I know I can glean more from a day if I’m up with the binmen. 
I can get most of my work done by 8.30am if I’m being honest – no interruptions, no phones ringing, no people whizzing past the window on a Segway to distract me.

Life could get longer if I watch less shit telly, set my alarm an hour earlier, take a stroll in the cool morning air and consider my future. I can make that happen, with the help of a superior alarm clock.

Tick tock.

Dan Germain

Short footnote – this was written on the 05.41 train from Didcot 
Parkway to London Paddington. Living the early morning dream.

Just the way it is

  • Posted by howies
  • 1 September 2009

Categories:

Just the way it is

Just the way it is
Where there are hills, there are bikes
Where there’s concrete, there are skateboarders

Where there’s toast, there’s butter
Where there’s tea, there are biscuits*

Where there are paddling pools, there’s laughter
Where there’s kids, there’s hope

Where there’s chickens, there’s eggs (and rats)
Where there’s fish, there’s otters

Where there’s common sense, there’s harmony
Where there’s words, there’s pictures

Where there’s work, there’s fun
Where there’s fun, there’s work

*except at howies

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