Sometimes it's pretty awesome to have a brother who's a professional athlete. As I bundled up to take a walk to the library yesterday, I couldn't help but notice that I felt a little like a human advertisement:
Which made me think that Alex's sponsors are pretty smart folk to send him more stuff than he needs, since of course then he ends up giving it away to lovely, mediocrely-hardcore people like me who then wear it out and about and inadvertently spread the brand-name word. In general, I'm pretty not about branding like that--but on the other hand, I do need a jacket, and I do like me a warm beanie, and a headlamp is a really useful running accoutrement in the winter. If I can get those things from Alex for free, of course I'm going to use them. Plus, that's the best jacket I think I've ever owned--nice job, North Face!:)
So I've kind of been thinking of myself as a beneficiary sponsor of The North Face and Black Diamond and Clif Bar, if only because I get Alex's cast-offs and the occasional present from his allotted budgets (thanks, Alex!:)
Anyway, Alex is off in Chad, then Israel, Turkey, and Greece right now, so for the next 4 months, I get another cast-off: his van. Tonight, James and I are taking it to the coast for a Thanksgiving on the ocean; afterward, I'm packing up my bike and trailer, driving down to California, and biking my ass down the coast for a few weeks. I'm psyched about it.
And in the meantime, if you want to read about Alex's adventures, The North Face has a blog that's been graced by the occasional Chad expedition post. If you want to see a goofy picture, try the first post from Africa. It'll make you want to travel for sure:)