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5/12/09 / Tail

8:50 PM I’ve been wanting to pay respect to some of my favorite products – material goods that do what they’re meant to do and do it very well, and for very long. For example:

Timberland boots

These here are my trusty Timberland boots. I bought these in 1999 in Bakersfield, CA, for $99. Since then they’ve moved around with me everywhere I’ve gone, and have tirelessly served me in sand, snow, mud, rain, slush, and anything else Mother Nature has thrown at me. They even went to India with me, where they had the distinct pleasure of walking over the world’s highest motorable pass, and stroll through the beautiful Valley of Flowers National Park, among other places. It’s been almost ten years and they’re still going strong.

This here is perhaps my favorite component on my bicycle: the pedal. The Time ATAC pedals have been on my bike since 2003, and they have probably seen more abuse than any other component – hitting rocks and logs frequently. Never once have I even had to think about them, let alone do anything about them. They’re just that good.

What else…I’ll think and come back with other products I admire.

9:44 AM From The Snow Leopard:

Amazingly, we take for granted that instinct for survival, fear of death, must separate us from the happiness of pure and uninterpreted experience, in which body, mind, and nature are the same. And this debasement of our vision, the retreat from wonder, the backing away like lobsters from free-swimming life into safe crannies, the desperate instinct that our life passes unlived, is reflected in proliferation without joy, corrosive money rot, the gross befouling of the earth and air and water from which we came.

Compare the wild, free paintings of the child with the stiff, pinched “pictures” these become as the painter notices the painting and tries to portray “reality” as others see it; self-conscious now, he steps out of his own painting and, finding himself apart from things, notices the silence all around and becomes alarmed by the vast significations of Creation. The armor of the “I” begins to form, the construction and desperate assertion of separate identity, the loneliness: “Man has closed himself up, till he sees all things through the narrow chinks of his cavern.”

-Pg. 42

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