Like many of you, I've been transfixed by events so far in 2011. We see several oppressive oil-rich states struggling to the brink of all-out war against courageous citizens who refuse to take it any more. Saudi troops in Bahrain, the enemy -- freedom. Bombing missions seemingly about to start over Libya. The oil markets are roiling with uncertainty. We see massively indebted world powers struggling against the forces of nature to maintain their lifeblood, cheap energy, to the point of meltdown and blowout. Cheap energy isn't really very cheap, is it? Not any more.

Meanwhile, I've been wrestling with a subject that can be known only to the terminally comfortable and secure. A subject that depends on affluence and cheap energy for its very existence. Something that is, in a roundabout way, under attack by current events: Mountain biking.

My new book, a how-to for trail riding, should be available in a few months. Title is not yet determined. However, we have a tentative version of the back cover copy:

 

An unprecedented new look at mountain biking and trail riding techniques

Riding obstacle-strewn singletrack trails on a two-wheeled machine is one of those seductive challenges that can never be entirely mastered, even by the most talented and experienced. In [Title?], Robert Hurst deliberately avoids discussion of equipment, training, and other subjects that have already been beaten to death in mountain bike books and magazines, to focus on the deeply complex art of riding trails. From page to page and switchback to switchback, Hurst chases the elusive mysteries that make trail riding so difficult -- and so rewarding -- from the application of "soft power" and the biomechanics of balance and vision, to the philosophy of line choice and the Riccatti equations that describe the path of the bike's rear wheel, to the nature of dirt itself.

Built on the author's own quarter-century of experience and the tried-and-true wisdom of many other veteran mountain bikers, this environmentalist and darkly humorous manual provides a collection of unexpected knowledge that will be indispensable to both novices and experts. [Title?] is a fittingly unique and surprising guide for this unique and surprising sport.

 

Yeah. Almost makes you want to go out and eat some dirt right now. Can I get a little extra Cesium on that please.

To anybody who buys this or any of my other books, I love you.