Our ambassadors bring a certain ‘light’ to our company. They make us laugh, they make us cry and most of the time they make us giggle with anticipation at their accomplishments. We always like to delve a little deeper into the minds of those we admire, so we decided to create a little segment aptly dubbed: Up Close and Personal.
Catching up with our ‘always on the go’ writer and climber Brendan Leonard, we figured he would be an expert on what you need to have in your arsenal to take on the day, daily. From Astro Van to various mountains and rock climbing areas, you can find him musing over the inspiration for his next piece (or even next adventure).
Q: What are the Top Five items you can’t live without on a daily basis?
A: 1. Smartphone
I’ll just admit it to myself (maybe you should too?). I would love to think I’m a simple, freewheeling dirtbag climber, but everybody’s gotta eat. I depend on this little pocket-sized computer for phone calls, e-mails, photos, social media, music, podcasts, and sometimes I use it as a flashlight.
I have few vices, but this is the big one: 32-40 ounces of coffee per day. Doesn’t have to be good, although good coffee is preferred. I tend to stay out West, where I feel best people understand the importance of coffee. Other regions of the country sometimes make me worry a little bit when it comes to availability of espresso. I wrote a little piece about it here.
3. Hip hop
I think if you do something long enough, it becomes a kind of home for you. I have been listening to hip hop since I was an 11-year-old growing up in a tiny town in the northeast corner of Iowa. Now I’m that old guy telling all the young kids that the music they listen to is garbage, and they should listen to the stuff I do. I had this moment on a backpacking trip with some inner-city kids a couple years ago where I was telling one of the guys, Trae, that Illmatic was the greatest hip hop album of all time, and I realized he hadn’t been born until the year after Illmatic came out.
Sometimes it’s just making a barista laugh, or smile, or talking to someone in line at the grocery store, but I work by myself (not in an office with a bunch of co-workers), so I need to make some sort of human connection every day or I turn into Eeyore.
5. Hot sauce
I think men don’t have a very good understanding of spices, so we just douse everything in hot sauce. True? My brother just gifted me 12 bottles of Tapatio for Christmas.
What do you think? Top five things you can’t live without? Keep up with Brendan’s adventures on semi-rad.com and start thinking about your list.