Less selling, more story telling.
Well, I’m over it . . .
. . . part of it, at least.
When I started carving this little corner of the internet out for myself my intentions were fairly transparent – Get free stuff and maybe even get a little cash in hand for a lifestyle I had already been living. I was going to test and review equipment relating to the hobbies much of my money and time was already being spent on. As a kicker, I was planning on traveling the world and having someone else foot the bill. But as I said, I’m over it.
Rather than go on a jaded and long-winded rant about the many details of travel and outdoor blogging that I absolutely despise – flaunting of privilege, self-promotional bullshit, repetitive thoughtless nonsense, and mindless consuming of goods we absolutely do not need, etc. – I’m just going to leave it behind. The world doesn’t need another comfortable white American telling them how to enjoy itself and which products to use to optimize said enjoyment. I’m not going to go on and on pissing and moaning about why I’d prefer one type of waterproof, windproof, stink-proof, reality-proof fabric over another. And the world really doesn’t need yet another self-entitled blowhard telling everyone about how they have the best life ever on the road and “You could do it too if you just got off your ass, ya dummy!” The truth is, I really don’t give a shit. What people think they need to buy or sell is their business and I’m no longer in the business of having to formulate those opinions for people. (A note on that last sentence – Some may read it and think “but you barely posted any gear reviews as it is, dude” and they’d be right. But when I haven’t been pooping around with my little corner of the internet, I’ve been one of your almost genuinely friendly local outdoor gear shop employees for a little more than a decade. I used to take it pretty seriously. For a while. I know more about the gear you spend your money on, where it comes from, the materials used and who was exploited to produce it than your typical average bear. That knowledge and the profession around it has thoroughly burnt me out on giving any fucks about who uses what and for which reasons. Basically, I’d rather just go play outside or tuck myself into a tiny coach seat to some undisclosed location and forget the whole mess of trying to care about what you’re doing with your time and money. It’s also worth noting that this same chipper attitude laid out presently is one of the reasons the bulk of my reviews have never been published or paid for. Maybe it’s the language. Who am I kidding, it’s definitely the language. Turns out most companies hate being told their product that’s exactly like all the others they’re trying to compete with, is shit. Weird, right?) All I really have energy to care about at this point is the hope that people go about their acquisition of more “stuff” responsibly. Buy used. Buy local if it’s at all possible. Buy from companies that give something, anything, back to the communities producing their goods if you can. Sadly, those are often the very last things on most people’s lists when they’re buying their latest carbon fiber dick extension. So rather than continue down this sickeningly cheery road of aggressive consumerism, I’m moving on.
But you know what I believe the world will always need? Storytellers. And after three years of trying to navigate between trying to write about whatever escape I’ve recently indulged in and the gear I actually use and can get behind, I’ve realized that telling stories, or re-telling stories from the road, is where I’ve found most of my pleasure in the Rodda Trials. So much so that in my spare time I’ve amassed quite a pile of short stories relating to everything shared here on this blog and so much more. Many of those stories have outgrown that pile and are slowly becoming a collection I’m quite fond of. So for the foreseeable future, I’ll be making a departure from the grind of half-heartedly attempting to write about equipment of any kind and focusing on developing my little pile of stories into something that has some substance I can really be proud of. I’m sure there will still be the occasional trip report, and there will always be more photography added to the gallery here, but the content shared will largely be made up of excerpts of stories or chapters from one of my other writing projects. And as I build up and polish these various stories, it should probably be mentioned that the language will be a bit more colorful and the subject matter may push a few folks’ envelopes of comfort. Something I’m sure I will enjoy heartily.
Thanks for reading.