At Boultbee Towers, the judging panel for our 2011 John Brooks Haiku Invitational has almost reached a preliminary verdict, and is now on the hard road to recovery from Repetitive Stress Injury.
Brought on, you’ll understand, not by the ubiquity of (poetic license ahoy) fraying, burning, heaving, freezing, laughing, hammering internal organs on display throughout the (p.l.a.) perspiring, thirsty, hungry avalanche of recent haiku-style offerings from our loyal readership, but rather by the constant finger-flipping which syllable counting necessitates.
When the assembled might of Brooks decamped to the German capital in January for Bread and Butter’s winter show, bespoke tailor Timothy Everest was also on hand at our pavilion to give visitors a first hand account of the creative process behind our new cycling jacket, the Criterion Mk. 1.
For anyone who didn’t make it to Berlin this year, we have made a short film in which Timothy expounds a little upon his professional background, and shares his thoughts on the Brooks legacy, while outlining some of the features which make the Criterion not just highly functional, but also perhaps one of the most stylish pieces of cycling apparel available on the market today, One of them, we said.
Ladies, Gentlemen. We’ve announced the date for the third annual London Tweed Run. The event will be on Saturday 9 April 2011, with registration opening at noon on Saturday 26 February 2011 from our website,www.tweedrun.com . We’re proud to welcome Brooks as a sponsor again this year. I’ll take this opportunity to repost the lovely Stacey Cotter’s article about last year’s Tweed Run, from the upcoming issue of the Brooks Bugle:
The wealth of poetic talent apparent in our blog’s comment section and on our Facebook page since the weekend would lead the casual observer to think they had somehow stumbled upon Samuel Coleridge’s previously unpublished musings on the subject of cycling up and down hills.
If one were to interpret each Haiku entry we received over the last day or so as a Valentine’s Day declaration of affection for our fine saddles, it would be hard not to feel flattered, extremely well loved and, well, let’s just say very warm inside .
If it was possible, Andrea’s, Bregan’s and Ted’s working hours over the coming weeks would see them doing little else but writing individual replies (each of seventeen well chosen syllables) to every missive received. In the next days, at least, we’ll be placing one or two submissions under a friendly spotlight, and maybe reiterating the general criteria for a successful haiku.
We cannot, however, indefinitely allow emotion or poetry to obstruct us from the duty of informing our readers of recent developments in matters bag-ular.
Regular readers will be aware that we have been rummaging about in our now no longer highly secret underground vault at the Smethwick Works over the last few weeks.
The 1880′s Brooks catalogues we unearthed would appear to have been only the proverbial tip of a truly mammoth iceberg of (some would say literally priceless) antique saddles, commemorative jerseys and other assorted Brooks paraphernalia.
Our story finds us in the Midlands on a dark winter morning in 1862, the young John Brooks awaking from strange dreams. Having completed his ablutions, and breakfasted on a gruel of buttermilk and barley, he makes to leave for work, only to open the stable door and find that at some point in the night his horse, Ned, has shuffled off its piece of this mortal coil.
A potter around the (until now very well-kept secret) Brooks underground vault at Smethwick this week threw up some truly amazing surprises. Did you know, for example, that Mr. Brooks filed a patent in the 1920s for what appears to have been a primitive form of internet called the “Highway Code”?
Even more interesting, however, was the box containing Brooks catalogues from the 1890s. Not only for the abundance of inventively realised solutions to cycling quandaries found therein, but also for the charming use of language thrusting like a B50 “Climax” from every page.
Proper Saddle Maintenance? (This saddle was misidentified recently by a Brooks Stories
contributor as having originated from our factory)
Over recent years, Brooks has been discovered by a constituency of buyers that might not normally be found spending its money on a leather bike saddle. In fact, said constituency might previously not have been found spending its money on any type of bike saddle, or any other component part of a bicycle, for that matter.