Everything Else

Home life, nerd stuff, and other interests
Sex & TravelKeeping vices in check...with social The Audience This rant all started with a question: “You know this is killing your growth. Why are you flip-flopping between adventure and erotic posts instead of focusing on one audience?” The answer should be obvious: I don’t care if I have either audience, and I am not my fucking follower count. I have zero interest in maintaining my good standing within holier-than-thou “overland lifestyle” cliques, and I have even less interest in providing pervert hordes with material for their spank tanks. None of that has anything to do with my “growth” anyhow. I do, however, care deeply about the art itself and the individual connections that the art inspires. I also love the adventure of exploring and the solitude of the wilderness, whether or not the means I use are “worthy” as a status symbol. Sure, I appreciate likes and follows as much as the next guy, but I enjoy the conversations more—especially those private interactions that occur when people are moved to compliment or question my efforts backchannel. (I’m very socially awkward, so I understand exactly how much effort that can take.) I want more of that. I want to reach souls who are in search of that deeper connection. I want to inspire my fellow artists, and break down the hypocritical boundaries of censorship imposed by the false modesty of society. At the very least I want to make you feel something, and if I’m lucky, make you think. I do what I do as much to rock the boat as to share my passions (yes, rocking the boat is one of my passions). Switching it up every other post has proven a subtly effective way to shake loose from those two groups mentioned in the first paragraph while reaching for my real target audience: you. Accountability & Growth I’m at a place in life where it’s easy to be dragged down into the routine, which for a creative is the most dangerous place one can be: chaos is life, routine is death. Instagram is my accountability partner. It follows me around, that nagging little icon always on the lock screen reminding me to create something today. You see, I judge my content not by likes and comments, but against my profile as a whole. It’s a living documentary of the work I’ve done, and I’m competing with only myself. I’m there to consume what inspires, and in turn… NSFW · Explicit
Why I LeftLet's clear up the rumors surrounding my departure from American Adventurist Yes, it’s true: American Adventurist and I have parted ways. I do still pen an article for them from time to time, but someone else is handling their creative and technology needs, and I am no longer a partner or staff. It was the best move for all involved parties. American Adventurist is headed in a different direction from where my passions lie. At the same time, (for medical reasons I won’t get into) I’m no longer able to volunteer the time and money necessary to guide a community of that size, nor maintain the dedicated technology resources it requires. But…what about Adventurist Life? A lot of people have the impression that Adventurist Life was my baby, and that I’ve somehow abandoned it. The fact is Adventurist Life drifted far away from the concept I’d created even before it’s first day in the public eye. My vision was far more edgy, elegant enough to appeal to affluent audiences, yet authentic enough for the everyman. I wanted print—an ad-free quarterly coffee table book that didn’t pull punches, wasn’t afraid to show a little sex appeal, and shamelessly told it like it was. The market, at least my audience at the time, wanted something altogether different: a free-to-view, advertiser-paid, family-friendly, budget-focused adventure blog. So I worked to give them a home and ultimately set them up with a partner who will give them the best chance of success. Thus it became a member of the American Adventurist family. Onwards and Upwards At this point I’ve done all that I can do for this project. I’ve personally invested tens of thousands of dollars and thousands of man-hours to get American Adventurist where it is today, and I’m confident that the community has all of the tools they need to thrive. I wish them all the best, but it’s time for me to get back to my vision, back to building the dream, back to what I do best: pushing the limits and creating new things. Until next time: see you…out there.… NSFW · Explicit
Hiatusnoun | hi·a·tus | \hī-ˈā-təs\ 1. a break or interruption in the continuity of a work, series, action, etc. 2. a missing part; gap or lacuna. I thought it was just an argument. All relationships have them: some big and some small, some brief and others passionately long-winded. We fight, we make up, we move on and grow stronger together—that is the way things are supposed to go. These were just bad times, we’d work through them and get back to making more good times. Did you know that it’s possible to be too selfless, too giving? It is. And when you’re giving up what you want for a prolonged period of time the stress that builds can lead to some very bad drama. Arguments ensued. Mean things were said. The kind of things that cut to the core and place the last twenty years in doubt. We were both sacrificing too much. And we were both sacrificing it in that void of isolation all too often created when conflicting work schedules meet poor communication. I don’t want to be needed. That implies you’re only here because you have to be, because you’re forced. I want you to be here because you choose to be here; because you want it…or not at all. Constantly giving to a relationship—be it from a sense of obligation or a need to feel needed—will only serve to make both people involved feel trapped. It is neither healthy, nor sustainable. To be in it for the long term requires a foundation of desire and trust; the willingness to both give and take; and presence of mind know when to help, listen, or let alone…sometimes when the other person doesn’t know which one they want. So it was time to re-evaluate what we’re doing; rediscover, review, and revise our goals; and most importantly execute on the steps required to achieve those goals. Solo or together. Whether we’re busy or not. Between that and a pile of other personal and work-related deadlines all piling up in the same month, it was prudent to take a step back from the (often overwhelming) commitment to publish new content and focus on our own needs…and wants. The irony of the situation is that, yes, during our two month hiatus we managed to write, shoot, sketch, and design more content than in the rest of the year to date. The difference is we did it knowing… NSFW · Explicit
Yeah, I Said FuckDon't let "what if?" be the excuse Explore for a moment the what if’s?—not the hesitation born of fear, but anticipation of the limitless opportunity blazing a new path might bring. What if we broke with tradition and walked, leaving the paralyzing stress of clinging to what was behind? What if we embraced change, and used the contrast of decay to spotlight all the beauty that surrounds us? What if we dared bolder and lived deliberately? What if we shout FUCK IT!, cast off those chains of hypocrisy we’ve worn in the name of being a “reputable cog” in their machine, let go of the worry that our passions might be revealed, and chase after what they tell us can’t—or shouldn’t—be done? Creative is what I do, after all. That talent is useless if I never use it, if I leave what I’m passionate about on a dusty shelf, or if I forever lock away what I create. I refuse to let what if be an excuse, and so… New on Chazz Layne Daughtcom Raw: Experiments in Light and Passion Often, there’s so much more to an experience than can be summed up in a single photo on Iggy, but not quite enough to fill an article. Sometimes the subject matter just isn’t relevant to any of the magazines for which I write…or appropriate for a work-safe portfolio. These experiments of passion—when they generate share-worthy results—now have a home here: Raw. (Warning: always tasteful, often NSFW) Work: Published and Other Most of the larger projects I’m involved in eventually make it to The Layne Studio’s portfolio. Magazine articles, campaigns in progress, and other smaller projects have gone more or less unshared…until now. Merch: Stuff & Things I like to tinker—creating art, furniture, and other things I want to see made. Some of it goes to clients or is sold in partner shops, other items are more personal and now live here. Free shipping to the USA on most merch, and yeah, I will consider custom requests. My dead camera is getting replaced this week in preparation for a busy summer. Follow along via @chazzlayne on Iggy (daily), or weekly(ish)less frequently on YouTube and Facebook. Give a shout if I’ll be in your neck of the woods, I’m always down for an impromptu meetup; and please keep the comments coming, my creative lives off of your feedback. Cheers!… NSFW · Explicit
52:Later225.31 miles 479,333 steps 34,315+ elev Look at that fat bastard (photo love from Chris Van Loan). Motivation for a change came from that photo, taken in mid-December of 2015. Denial is a place I rarely visit, but it was in full force then. I’d been quietly ignoring the inches gradually being added to my jean size for a couple years. In my twenties and early thirties I wore a 32 comfortably, by December 2015 I was barely squeezing into a size 35. Change came in the form of the 52 Hike Challenge, which I stumbled upon from my friend John Graham’s Instagram feed when he finished his challenge that month. He started his second series, the 52 Hike “Adventure” Challenge, and I hit the trail for my regular challenge on January 5th, 2016. A year later I weigh in at the same 180 pounds I did when I started, but it’s all muscle now. I’m back comfortably into a size 32. More than that, having to consistently hike that frequently was the push needed to get “over the hump” and finally get out on foot and cover some real distance—an ability I’ve desired for decades. Lugging 50 pounds of gear for several miles to get the shot just doesn’t seem like a big deal anymore. Health aside, that’s the gain I’m most grateful to have achieved. #Beyond52 Will I do another 52 Challenge? Probably not, but I’m glad I did this one. I’m also glad it’s over: I’m looking forward to hiking on my own schedule now, for the sake of the hike, and not because I need to hit an arbitrary target…I simply enjoy hiking too much now to place that kind of stress on it.… NSFW · Explicit
52:December57.12 miles 121,073 steps 8,633+ elev 41. Top of Quartz Mountain, via Wolverton from Highway 89: 7.75 miles 42. Prescott Christmas Parade, Tree Lighting Ceremony, and a bit of antiquing: 2.4 miles 43. Classified Location—location scouting and photo shoot: 2.15 miles 44. Red Bridge Trail: 7.65 miles 45. Centennial Trail: 1.99 miles to see thousand-year-old graffiti on a rock in a gated community 46. Unknown Trail: 4.24 miles 47. Granite Mountain: 8.67 miles, 1,819 feet of climb over two miles, and one celebratory pint from Granite Mountain Brewing 48. Christmas Eve Snow: 3.34 miles, 6 inches and counting 49. Christmas Snow Hike: 1.7 miles chasing the headwaters of Willow Creek, through 18″ of snow 50. Falcon Hunting (photographically speaking): 3.57 miles 51. Javalina Firewater: 4.19 miles 52. Spruce Mountain: a very foggy 9.47 miles A Hike Every Other Day Well ok, 31 days in December, it isn’t quite that much. The Twelve Hikes of Christmas? Regardless, my 52 Hike Challenge is now complete, and I’m never hiking again. Just kidding. In fact, I’m probably going again tomorrow…… NSFW · Explicit
52:November17.87 miles 37,878 steps +2,459 elev 38. Sierra Prieta, easing back in with familiar terrain: 4.62 miles 39. Bell Trail / Wet Beaver Creek; Rimrock, Arizona: 7.15 miles 40. Sierra Prieta, first snow of the season: 6.1 miles Tendons Get Better With Age? All that momentum in September pushing me one hike shy of caught up. One early November morning revealed the tell tail sign, blood surfacing to the skin near my hip joint. A few hours later the pain arrived, hip and knee…no hike for me that day. We caught it early, fortunate there was no serious damage, and after a few weeks taking it easy I’m back on the trail. Three hikes down this week, five weeks left to finish a dozen more. Let’s do this.… NSFW · Explicit
52:September31.35 miles 65,541 steps +5,241 elev 32. Spruce Pack Trail, Sierra Prieta: 5.35 miles 33. All of the Sierra Prieta trails I’d not done before…and a nap: 9.5 miles 34. Pott’s Creek Trail #327. Because, rain…and forests: 5.29 miles 35. T37 Purgatory: 7.48 miles, uphill both ways 36. Abandoned fort, location classified: 1.62 miles 37. Watson Woods Riparian Preserve, Prescott: 2.11 miles Efforts & Expectations I’ve been self-evaluating heavily this month, dwelling on that ever-evolving concept of excellence and striving to purge anything that doesn’t make the cut—such things become ritual when your religion is “curator.” The latest mass culling has included things like unused gear, designs that lack that “pop,” photos that are only “good enough” (I carry the heavy DSLR on hikes now), poor vendors (oh, hey there Wells Fargo), and any perceived slothfulness in the day-to-day. That last one is tough to measure using less-than-excellent gear: I’ve been hiking harder and faster to push past unexpected exhaustion on recent hikes: hikes with cumulative elevation gains supposedly in the mere hundreds of feet. I mean, I live a mile above sea level, and started out this 52 Hike Challenge thing with hikes featuring thousands of feet in gain…the fuck is wrong with me? My inner nerd was screaming “Is the cable plugged in?” so I decided to do some testing. Low and behold: MapMyFitness has been “recalculating for accuracy,” supposedly from USGS source data, and cutting the cumulative elevation gain from my routes by an average of 40% (my last hike was logged at a whopping 20% of the actual gain). Sorry MMF, but your super-accurate “correction” method sucks. What doesn’t suck? The results achieved when you bite the bullet, put the point-and-shoot away, and haul that heavy DSLR kit ten miles up the mountain in the rain:… NSFW · Explicit
52:August27.53 miles 58,376 steps +4,800 elev 25. Devil’s Slide, Pacifica: 1.98 miles 26. Land’s End, San Francisco: 1.99 miles, 2437 stairs 27…was a bust: the “trails” were roads, but at least the Foz got some dirt time. 27a—Searching for White Rock Water: 0.17 miles; 27b—Glen Oaks Mine: 0.29 miles; 27c—Mount Francis Summit: 1.1 miles 28. Willow Creek to Granite Basin #347: 2.36 miles 29. Poland-Walker Tunnel: 4.32 miles 30. Watershed Trail / Deer Lick Spring: 6.13 miles, 13 tadpoles 31. Groom Creek Loop: 9.19 miles, and one fantastic sunset Perspective It’s taken over a decade, but I might just be over my desert phase. There are some trees—some greenery—up here in Prescott, but each trip out I’ve been wandering toward taller and taller mountains, wetter and wetter climates. Running up the coast this month didn’t help, I feel the grey skies and cold mist of the sea calling me home. I’m not sure where we’ll end up next, but I sense a change in the wind coming…… NSFW · Explicit
52:July16.45 miles 34,876 steps 3,190+ elev 22. Venezia #381: 3.25 miles 23. Spruce Pack Trail aka West Spruce #264, via Porter Spur #300: 5.67 miles 24. West Fork Oak Creek, Coconino NF #108: 7.53 miles Reflection A photog friend of mine once gave me a tip on shooting sunsets: “Don’t forget to turn around.” It’s good advice, whether taking pictures or applying it to life in general. Not dwelling in the past—just taking a quick glance to make sure you’ve held on to what’s most important, and are living up to your own goals.… NSFW · Explicit
PrintThinking Inside the Box Fixed borders. Arbitrary margins. Simplistic math and no limits—if it can be imagined, it can be done. Such is the nature of paper. Control is back in the hands of the designer: I pick the paper size, I pick the ink, I pick the printer. No worrying about thousands of varying screen sizes, bad gamma on Macs, or the horrible cold of a consumer’s cheap monitor. I forgot how much fun design for print could be, it’s a refreshing and much needed change of pace. Drop on by Adventurist Life for all the details, and of course, to pre-order a subscription. The IndieGoGo campaign starts soon (don’t worry, we’ll have add-on rewards for existing subscribers too).… NSFW · Explicit
52:June12.16 miles 28,905 steps 1,915+ elev 19. Woodchute Mountain: 7.4 miles 20. Sierra Prieta #327: 2.64 miles 21. Sierra Prieta #366: 2.12 miles Moving Forward I planned ahead when I started this thing. This is Arizona. We may have trees and water up here in the highlands, but in the summer heat I want to be sitting in a brewery with an ice cold pint, not watering said trees with sweat while I climb eight miles up a mountain. During the winter I was getting an extra hike in each month, saving up as it were for the summer months—it simply wasn’t meant to be. Motivation to catch up through the summer heat will have to come from the enticements of my hiking partner and stunning sunset vistas.… NSFW · Explicit
Google is a Digital Thug"Sign up or we'll destroy you." That’s a short, but accurate, summary of the message I’ve received from Google shortly after they lost control of their crawlers and shut down one of my servers. As it turns out, the default is for their bots to consume up to unlimited resources while indexing a site’s content. Google has also declared themselves free to probe a site using any means at their disposal (via their terms of service, which you’ve “agreed” to unless you’ve opted your sites out of their index), including massive POST queries for which there are exactly zero legitimate reasons (dozens of megabytes, repeated thousands of times). Sound familiar? It should, it’s one of several tools malicious hackers use to conduct denial-of-service attacks. It gets better. There’s no way I can fight Google on this without gobs of money and a lot of free time, so I gave in and signed into their Webmaster Tools. After adjusting the preferences and reducing the size of the stick their search bots are allowed to carry when visiting, the following message popped up: To: Webmaster of https://adventurist.life/, Google Search Console has detected that you or a verified site owner of https://adventurist.life/ changed the maximum crawl rate setting for your website. Within a day or two, Google crawlers will change crawling to the maximum rate that you set. Because crawl rates impact how quickly users can see your updated content in search results, we recommend not limiting Google’s crawl rate. Only do so if your server experiences severe traffic load problems. New crawl rate: 0.031 requests per second Status: Begin within 2 days, effective for 90 days. So not only am I being extorted by a company that’s too big for the rule of law, and forced into setting up an account under the threat of a server-melting denial-of-service attack, I’m also required to hop back on their system every three months and beg them to let my property alone? If I threatened to burn down Google’s data center for not subscribing to this blog, at best I’d get thrown in prison. But, because they are big bad motherfucking Google, I’m at their mercy? Meanwhile my techs and I are out hundreds of man-hours fighting off their malicious attacks, not to mention the loss of business from days of downtime (which just happened to occur at a critically important time). Sure it’s a rare occurrence, it only affects a handful of sites, whatever.… NSFW · Explicit
52:April4 miles 8000 steps 549+ elev 15. Watson Flume Trail: 2.0 miles 16. Downtown Prescott: 2.0 miles Distractions A time for work, a time for health: it’s a balance I’m still learning to maintain, something I barely have a handle on when things are going well. At the beginning of April I was faced with the decision between letting a company die, or picking up someone else’s slack. 80+ hour weeks ensued and fitness goals went in the bin. Lesson learned: always have a backup plan—especially when relying on others—and always include room in that plan for maintaining your own goals.… NSFW · Explicit
UnsolicitedEven bad advice can be valuable “You need to stop spending time in the mountains, and focus on building a career. You will never earn a living with that off-road stuff.” I was in my late twenties when I received that nugget of wisdom, from none other than my father. On the surface it’s not all that impractical; but pragmatism should be applied to strategy, not the dream itself. Hundreds of thousands of miles, thousands of photographs, hundreds of articles, dozens of adventure-industry clients, and five years as a designer/author at a certain premium publication later it’s clear I took that advice to heart…just not as he intended. The doubters and “haters” in this world love to share their unsolicited advice, masked as the gift of some rare gem that might spare you from a life of poverty. More often than not, hidden beneath that mask is a bitter envy and a desire to keep you stuck at their level. Harness all that negative energy and use it as motivation to make shit happen. Turn your dreams into goals, and lay out a plan to make them a reality. Everyone that is successful today was dumb enough to try yesterday.… NSFW · Explicit
52:March24.11 miles 51,134 steps 3,447+ elev 11. Wolverton Mountain via Aspen Creek on Prescott 48: 4.59 miles 12. Wandering the Sierra Prieta via Prescott 366, FR9707T, 327, and FR9401J: 7.42 miles 13. Prescott 393 and 327: 8.58 miles 14. Prescott 37: 3.52 miles Horizon Views like this remind me why I left the city. That’s not haze, nor dust or smog. It’s distance…some 80 miles of it between Wolverton Mountain where I’m standing and the snow-capped Humphrey’s Peak outside Flagstaff. With no traffic on the road it would take almost two hours to get there…or 30 minutes in a Subaru.… NSFW · Explicit
52:February13.46 miles 29,049 steps 1,856+ elev 06. Watson Lake, Flume Trail: 1.4 miles 07. Little Granite Mountain Loop: 7.06 miles 08. Aspen Creek: 1.2 miles 09. T37 Sunset Timelapse: 1.7 miles 10. American Adventurist Desert Rendezvous Trash Cleanup: 2.1 miles and immeasurable squats Increasing the Load Somewhere along the line the bright idea to start shooting time lapses on these hikes became default. I’m not one to tie up the DSLR for hours on end, so this involves hauling a whole other set of gear up Prescott’s particularly mountainous terrain. I’m glad I started this while there is still snow on the ground. Difficulty Bonus: February’s hikes were done with an extra 20 pounds of gear. I still haven’t decided on a backpack…… NSFW · Explicit
Adventurist LifeThe Adventure Begins After months of behind the scenes planning and designing, the Adventurist Life concept is finally ready for prime time. Head on over to the Kickstarter Campaign for an inside look and join us for the next adventure! We need your help getting the word out to adventurists far and wide: every like, follow, and share is one more person we can reach to help make this dream a reality. Instagram Facebook and of course, Kickstarter Thanks for joining us, we look forward to seeing you…out there!… NSFW · Explicit
52:January14.82 miles 31,443 steps 1,933+ elev 01. Watson Dam, Flume Trail: 1.8 miles 02. Constellation Trails: 1.13 miles 03. Willow Lake, Red Bridge Loop: 3.85 miles 04. Mount Union: 6.94 miles 05. Pioneer Park, Unexpected Hike-a-Bike: 1.1 miles Onward and Upward Unfamiliar with the 52 Hike Challenge? You can read all about it here… For me, it helps maintain the momentum of motivation necessary to burn off that growing gut and stay in shape. It’s also good way to balance out the other exercise I do (like running and biking), and finally start exploring the local trails. I’ve been in this town five years, but until Hike #4 I’d never seen this view…… NSFW · Explicit