I know adventurous homebody is a paradox, but there are those of us indoor people who like a good adventure every once in a while. I like to go hiking, though my longest hike has only been about 6 hours round trip. Camping is great too, especially with good friends and a nice fire going. When it’s wet and chilly outside, as it is most of this season in Vancouver, and I can’t muster up the energy to pull on my rain boots and venture out, I like to read and watch other people doing crazy things like mountaineering and be glad I’m at home with dry feet.
Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer (1997)
Right now I’m about halfway through this book, and I already know I will never ever attempt to climb Mount Everest- not that I was ever going to, but I’m definitely not going to now. Krakauer tells the story of when he joined an Everest expedition guided by Rob Hall that ended in a severe storm, killing four on Krakauer’s team, including Hall. Krakauer is an accomplished climber and author of Into the Wild, so his wonderful writing paired with vivid descriptions of the climb and explanations of everything that’s involved in a successful expedition make for an immersive book.
Krakauer also touches on the dangers that Sherpas undertake to support Westerners’ expeditions, and raises the question of whether climbing Mount Everest on commercial expeditions is harmful to the region. Sherpas often don’t get the same amount of recognition as foreign climbers, but they do all the same climbing and then some. In July 2022 Sanu Sherpa, a Nepali climber, completed all 14 highest peaks for the second time, the only person to have done them all twice. Lhakpa Sherpa, 48, became the first woman to climb to the summit of Mount Everest 10 times. Kami Rita, a Sherpa Everest guide, has summited Everest 26 times and holds the world record for most summits.
I’ve been reading chapters here and there at breakfast and on my commute, and it definitely puts the small worries of the day into perspective.
2. 14 Peaks : Nothing is Impossible (2021)
Nirmal Purja, or Nims, and his team of Sherpas, including Mingma David Sherpa, Geljen Sherpa, Gesman Tamang, and Lakpa Dendi, climbed all 14 of the world’s 8,000 metre peaks in six months and six days. To put this project in perspective, the first climber to summit all 8,000 metre peaks, Reinhold Messner, took 16 years to accomplish his feat. The previous time record for the 14 peak project was over 7 years, by Kim Chang-ho. This is a massively respected project no matter the time it takes. Nims is memorable for his strong personal character and cheerful but fiercely focused outlook.
3. Journey to the Centre of the Earth by Jules Verne (1864)
I’m a big fan of Jules Verne’s writing, and this is maybe my favourite of his books. A geologist and his nephew decide to travel into the centre of the planet after finding an account of a 16th century explorer, who claimed to have found a route to the Earth’s core. The pair enter the route through Snæfellsjökull, an inactive volcano in Iceland. The book is pure science fiction, but Verne’s science-y reasoning and well-developed characters make it feel almost biographical.
4. The River Runner (2021)
In The River Runner Scott Lindgren kayaks through the four rivers flowing from Mount Kailash in Tibet, attempting to be the first person to complete all four. Lindgren talks about his experience with mental health, finding out he has a brain tumour, and learning to be vulnerable.
In this documentary Lindgren explores the mental side of extreme sports- many people in these kinds of fields have to be incredibly focused and strong to deal with the dangers and losses that are inherent to things like mountaineering or extreme kayaking. That mentality is useful in threatening situations, but it needs to be balanced with vulnerability and support.
Google translated the title of this channel from Korean as Early Morning Camping, I apologize if this is incorrect. On her channel, Chocho goes camping- in the winter for three months in an air tent, in the pouring rain, in her car, everywhere. My favourite thing about this channel is Chocho’s upbeat personality and positive, adaptable attitude.
I went camping in the rain once with a couple of friends. On the second night our tent leaked through the seams in the floor and we slept on puddles of water, as our parents had dropped us off without a car to escape into. We had fun, but I wish I had found Chocho’s channel before we went. She loves camping in the rain, and makes it look like the most magical time you can have outdoors.
Jonna is a Swedish YouTuber living in the north of Sweden. She films her day to day life living in a cold climate, her work as an artist and photographer, and the process of running her jewelry business with her husband. I like to watch her channel whenever it’s above 30 C in the summer and I miss wintertime. My great-grandfather was Swedish and I’m trying- slowly- to learn Swedish, so I enjoy watching her life in Sweden and when she occasionally speaks Swedish.
Mamiko and her husband live in Paris. She is a beauty journalist, and records their adventures and favourite places to go around France. The thing that stands out most about her is her curiosity- whenever she visits a new shop or destination she has thoughtful conversations with the staff. She films tours of French houses as well.
Mamiko also shares the process of decorating her home with French antiques and second hand furniture. Some of my favourite videos are ones where she visits flea markets, as she has wonderful taste. Mamiko is a home cook, and her meals are all warm and look delicious.
Julian Baumgarter is a second-generation fine art conservator in Chicago. This channel is a little different from the previous ones I’ve mentioned as it is not a vlogging channel, but the videos are so well-crafted that each feels like a little movie.
While showing the process of conservation, which is relaxing to watch, Julian explains the history behind pieces and the reasons why he chooses certain techniques to preserve different paintings.
Thuỷ of Her86m2 and her family live in Germany. They record their moments together as a family tending to their vegetable garden, cooking with its yield, and making their house a home. I started watching their channel when they lived in a beautiful apartment with a little balcony garden, and one year ago they moved to a 150-year-old house in the countryside of northern Germany, where they have a large backyard to raise plants.
The Crafter cult took initiative at yesterday’s tumultuous election speech and have brought forward a proposal for deal with the ‘children’ problem.
THE AGE OF ADULTHOOD IS NOW FIVE YEARS OLD.
Rabid murders of children run rampant all over Sporyn; there’s a murder of particularly vicious soccer boys ages ten and under known to burrow underneath restaurants then claw their way up through the floors, robbing cult members taken by surprise; and another tiny group causing massive amounts of mayhem makes friendship bracelets out of the hair of their victims.
At first, as I watched these little kids scaling up decrepit skyscraper walls with their talon-like nails, I thought, more power to them, this apocalyptic age freed up everyone from familial constraints. They were scavenging and stealing just like the rest of us, even if they had no interest in joining any cult at all.
But then, these kids started luring in their victims to their death, through pretending to be sick, or injured, or setting one with eyeballs in cute places to beg for food, and when someone gives in to their whimpering cries, the others attack. (Luring victims, of course, isn’t unheard of, in fact, the Grafts have a monthly meeting where they bet on the best traps to set for your enemies and whoever catches the most on their hit-list wins)
These kids will no longer get a free pass from Sporyn justice. After this election, the age of adulthood is now five years old.
Go get a real job you freeloading soccer creeps.
In an unprecedented event of compromise, an insane war was avoided when Crafter’s, Grafts, and the Nihilists reached a consensus on the need for time in Sporyn.
TIME WILL EXIST AGAIN
Time, of course has been a tricky construct to enforce since the sun rises and sets at random, uncalculable, intervals, with solar storms continuously raging; sometimes burning blisteringly bright for what feels like days, while at other times rising then immediately plunging us back into darkness three times in a row. However, since more and more people are finding themselves assimilated into the Cults of Sporyn, it’s gotten hard to coordinate any sort of meet up larger then four people.
In true Nihilistic fashion, the Nihilists (myself included) predictably did not want any way to measure our lives or anyone else’s. We argued that the inability to tell people when to meet up in massive numbers helped keep the city peaceful, since war cannot be waged without organizing troops based timing, and all conflict can be kept to wholesome one-on-one fights to the death.
The Crafters were all for creating a new way to standardize their lives, as well as everyone else’s. They agreed with us Nihilists for the most part about needing to keep peace, and offered to draw up plans for some for of police force, which thankfully was immediately shut down.
The Grafts could be persuaded either way, but felt time would be beneficial if they wanted to construct some kind of military parade one day.
A compromised was reached – there will be a reliable way to measure time, but you only have to pay attention to it if you want.
Events will be planned based on solar flares!
Since there are always solar storms no matter how long the sun is up for, tell your friends to meet you at when a certain number of solar flares transpire. That way, only the people attached to the plan have to pay attention to the flares, and anyone opposed to time can go on living as normal as possible.
The apocalypse may have eradicated suburbs, streetlights, waterways, all wheelie chairs, and the concept of Tuesdays, but it did not eviscerate our innate desire to have someone yell about life qualms, while everyone else waits to scream in support of a statement they agree with – This is called Voting.
Oddly enough, this is as non-partisan as the Cults of Sporyn get.
Collective memories of what ‘politics’ were before the great incident of human idiocy (which wiped out a whole tax-bracket of people who considered themselves above death for stringing up sentences like “ethically frugal public-funding”) couldn’t recall much that politics actually helped near the end. Having Cults take out the need for those self-righteous Parties. A distillation of what people actually liked about the whole system turned out to already be a favoured past-time of sentient Sporyn residents; giving speeches about whatever’s going on in their head at any given time.
So we made it a community event.
Sometimes it actually cumulates in something getting changed!
REMEMBER: Topics of this Soapbox screaming time have been already narrowed down by the Crafter’s since those over-organized road kill scrapbookers love micromanaging the rest of us.
1. What to do about the excess children.
Since no one has claimed responsibility of the wild, parentless kids running around Sporyn, and their crying and complaining and entitlement to others finding clothes and shelter for them is getting a little distressing, what do you think should be done about it?
2. Pros and Cons of standardized time.
As no more clocks exist, and day and nights never last for predictable intervals anymore, we’ve been going without measurements of time for the last little while and managing it pretty well!
If you want it back, state your case!
3. The Accountants are pissing us off.
(This problem is particularly dear to my heart)
Those stuck-up apocalypse deniers are just gonna keep going off acting like the old world didn’t get destroyed, judging the rest of us with those blank stares and old world shakes of their heads while they pretend to get promoted at their steady corporate jobs?!
Are we really gonna stand for that?
If you have any thoughts on any of these issues at all, come to the speech ceremony!
Through anger, you too have the power to incrementally improve the City of Sporyn.