Turf Blog 06-01-23

Turf Zone – BattleAbbey

There’s a scene in Fargo, season 1, where a rather evil and nasty character called Lorne Malvo, aptly played by Billy Bob Thornton, is on the phone to another main character by the name of Lester Nygaard, portrayed by Martin Freeman (with a Minnesota accent!). Malvo is asking Lester if he has been a bad boy? Or course, Lester has indeed been a bad boy having just killed his nagging and verbally abusive wife Pearl, with an engineer’s hammer. Okay then.

Yes, I too have been a bad boy. I’ve broken not one, not two, but three of my four New Year’s turfing resolutions. Yes, already! Firstly, I’ve succumbed to using my Surly Ogre bicycle rather than the Swifty kick scooter. Secondly, I’ve taken zones while walking and thirdly, I’ve taken the same zones more than once. And furthermore, I will probably break my fourth rule about not using the car very shortly. Well, so much for New Year’s turfing resolutions then. Best forget about that and move onto something else.

They say winter is coming on Game of Thrones, but hopefully not the Night King and the White Walkers, or his zombie Army of the Dead. But just in case they do, I’ve switched my Surly Ogre over to winter-zombie-apocalypse-end-of-days-mode with a set of nice new chunky off-road tyres, Schwalbe Marathon Plus MTB 29 x 2.25. My present tyres are Schwalbe Marathon Plus 700 x 47, essentially heavy-duty road touring tyres and while they do reasonably well off-road, they do struggle at times. Time for something a little bit more rugged for the coming winter and fleeing from the Army of the Dead. Thankfully, the frame of the Surly Ogre is made from Valyrian steel which might be useful.

Back last summer the mudflap on the Surly Ogre vanished one day while turfing down in Musselburgh, leaving the mudguard stay rattling annoyingly loose. I fixed the mudguard stay connection with a couple of pop rivets but never got round to replacing the mudflap. However, during work on the new porch, I salvaged some off-cuts of the roofing membrane they used from the skip. I love skip diving and have done so since I was a young lad. I cannot recall the name of the material but it’s a reinforced rubber-like material about 1.5 mm thick, easy to cut but strong and ideal for bike and scooter mudflaps. Should be good to stop all that crud splashing up the down tube, across the frame bag and also across me! All secured on with pop-rivets. This should help me stay clean as I ride over the squishy decomposing bodies of the Army of the Dead while out turfing.

Now, some further news on the Turf Scotland Advent 2023 event for December this year. I’ve finished compiling all 24 tasks and there will be a choice of an Easy Option, a Challenging Option and another option called Any 24, where you can mix and match any 24 tasks from either Easy or Challenging. As far as rules go, tasks can be completed any day after posting online but must be completed before the end of the advent. I’m hoping to be able to automate the posting of the tasks each day on Planet Gary, that is if I can master the post scheduling feature. So, each day’s task will appear online at 1.00 am each day. There will be a prize draw to select winners for each option, namely Easy, Challenging and Any 24 and the prizes* will consist of cars with custom Turf Scotland Advent 2023 livery. Exact model and specification to be determined. That’s all folks, back soon.

*Prizes may change as I think up new ideas.

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