Thoughts and Adventures From Greenlite Heavy Industries

Thursday, May 8, 2014


Some of the best mountain biking around.  Sometimes it's best to just get out and roll by oneself.  You get to go as fast as you want to go, and stop when you want to stop.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Live Hard

As I grow deeper into middle age my athletic focus is beginning to move away from high end performance (not that I ever had high end performance, but I sure did try for it) and move towards longevity.  When I say longevity I’m not simply referring to living to a ripe old age, but I’m more specifically interested in staying active in outdoor sports (biking, skiing, climbing, hiking, paddling) deep into old age.

Yesterday while riding the rollers in my kitchen I listened to an interview that Ben Greenfield conducted with Bruch Grierson author of What Makes Olga Run.  The book is profiles multiple world record holder Olga Kotelko who, at 95, still competes in masters track and field competitions.  Listening to Olga’s story and learning about other masters athletes such as Ed Whitlock (as well as studies conducted on modern day hunter/gather tribes) I start to wonder what makes these people tick, are they superhuman – one in a billion – or is there some common thread that links them together.

One common thread that I seem to be seeing is the benefits of living a hard life. Back in my childhood home of Iowa there are those old farmers who have basically worked outside all day every day since they are eight or nine years old.  They are tough and well into their seventies can outwork most modern day high school football players.  And I don’t believe that it’s simply the physical labor that delivers the benefits, it’s also enduring the cold winters and hot summers as well as a feeling of doing something satisfying.
Now I get to cycling.  Being an everyday rider is tough – at least here in Seattle where it is often cold and wet.  It takes some pretty stiff fortitude to get out there and point your nose into the wet wind day in and day out, and in my opinion this will pay off in a longer more healthy and active life.  I am trending towards the opinion that being outside in the elements is best thing that you can do for yourself with respect to living a strong, and long life.  Way better than diet and way way better than running on a treadmill in a 70 degree gym.  We’ll see if I’m right – in forty years.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Garage Band

I made a few sales and met some cool people at the Pedlar’s Fair this past Saturday, but the highlight of the day was seeing my product on folks cruising through.  I spotted three people wearing my pants.  All three stopped by and said how much they liked my product.  The positive feeling I get from people who’ve purchased my product and are out there using it and enjoying it is something that hasn’t been replicated anywhere else in my life.  In short, it’s an awesome feeling.

Starting a small business is a rollercoaster ride: one minute you’re up, the next you’re down, and I get a tremendous amount of positive energy from positive customer feedback.

Whenever I see my product out there in the world I liken the feeling I get to what I would imagine a garage band feels when they first hear one of their songs on the radio.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Going to the Show

Jason and Whitney put on yet another successful Pedaler’s Fair this past Saturday.  Manning a booth during a show is always a challenge for me as I’m not a born salesman, nor am I a natural conversationalist – once you get to know me I won’t shut up, but I tend to keep quiet around folks I don’t know.

Once again I went over the top with respect to the complexity of my booth and once again I was far and away the last guys to get packed up and out the door at show’s end.  Every time I attend a show I’m amazed by how quickly the other venders pack up and exit stage left.  I like going over the top though – I think it shows that I’m willing to put in the effort, that I’m not just there because I have to “make a showing.”

What I like most about these shows is that they give me the chance to meet folks from all walks of life who are out on the streets turning over pedals.  It’s easy to tend towards myopia, which in my case means bicycling means bicycle racing, which in fact is only a small fraction of folks who ride.  I was glad to see a lot of fabricators at the show, two of my favorites were Cyclefab, who work out of Equinox Studios in Seattle's Geogetown neighborhood, and Elephant Bikes out of Spokane.  I’m really digging their National Forest Explorer.