Fall is for firepits

It could be a nesting instinct that kicks in for me, come fall. Or the cooler temperatures. Or just the sudden realization that there was so much more that I had planned for the year. But fall is when I get things done.

Around this time last year, my son and I were working on a northwoods fire pit. Building an ash and white oak bench to go alongside the random stump and stone seating our pit had accumulated over the years. It was the perfect bridge from summer into fall.

This is what fall is for. Fall is for firepits.


Those of you that know me know this: Johnny don't surf.

Not that I haven't. And not that I won't again (hopefully soon, I love it). It's just that in my neck of the woods, the only rideable waves are called "wakes."  And the closest we get to surf's up is "snow's down." 

So why am I diving into another surfy post? Because this: Surfers make the best videos. That's just how it is. Or at least they make the most soulful ones.

Trust me, I've at least dabbled in pretty much every solo sport there is: winter, summer, action, silent, hook, bullet, esoteric-stuff-that-white-guys-with-dreadlocks do, you name it.

The point is, my interests tend to careen. And with each new obsession comes hours of youtube time. So it's with absolute certainty that I say no one draws the connections between who they are, and what they do, as well as surfers do. 

The short film "Out of the Black and Into The Blue" is no exception. Of course, the surf footage is spectacular: Ridiculous sets – the likes of which I've never seen. And ridiculous rides – the likes of which I can only imagine in my wildest Spicoli dreams... right before me and Mick wing over to London to jam with the Stones.

But this is not a surf film. 

You can watch it as a surf film, yes. I'm sure director Luke Pilbeam would appreciate it, since that's the film he made.

But once you've watched it, play it again with your eyes closed.

Just listen.

This is a life film. 

Of course, that's the film Luke made too. Surfers just get that kind of thing.

"It's difficult to explain to those who haven't found their calling..."

Props to Luke Pilbeam (Director), Nick Tsang (Music), and Joey Brown (Words).

Stop Sense Making

Tree forts don't make sense. A compound of tree forts, high in the mountains, overlooking your own massive poured concrete skate bowl, really doesn't make sense. But Foster Huntington just went ahead and did that shit anyway.

You can get his story here, and check out his excellent blog called A Restless Transplant.

But what you should really do is watch the short film below. It's a leisurely look at the year it took for him and his buds to build and settle into Cinder Cone. It's a very well put together piece, documenting a very well put together place.

The whole thing leaves me feeling a little jelly, of course. But what it really does is leaves me thinking about the no-sense-making shit I should get started on myself.

Confessions of a Dr. Bronner's 18-in-1 Almond Soap Huffer

Confessions of a Dr. Bronner's 18-in-1 Almond Soap Huffer

Few things in the world make me as happy as the smell of Dr. Bronner's 18-in-1 Almond Pure-Castile Soap. We have a long history together, this soap and I. A joyful history. A mostly naked history. Of course, I use the soap for doing dishes too. Although then I'm often clothed.

Put simply, Dr. Bronner's Almond Soap is the greatest smell in the world. (2nd–4th place ribbons go to orange peels, freshly split oak, and rain). I've used a lot of this soap over the years and I've paused every time to breathe in its deliciousness.

One thing I've never done though? 

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Go camping! You! Go camping now!

With Labor Day behind us, my head shifts to camping (car camping, backpacking, float trips, whatever ya got). That's because camping, while an entirely reasonable summer activity, is an entirely kick ass fall activity.

If this video doesn't make you wanna get out there, I don't know what will. Just the sights, sounds and sweetness of camping with no extra filler added nor required.

It's from Hipcamp which is an Airbnb-style concept for finding and reserving campsites. Although I haven't used it yet, the site looks solid. And this video, to me anyway, is damn near perfect. 

Edward Abbey and the sweet and lucid air

I spent today on the water with family. And friends. And a splash or three of tequila. 

This evening I spent reading Edward Abbey. And now, for whatever reason, I decided it would be a good idea to share. I have a strong suspicion that "whatever reason" = "a splash or three of tequila." But so it goes.

Hat tip to mi amigo Señor West for originally steering me to this quote.