About the author

Tim Moss

Tim Moss has supported over 100 expeditions across all seven continents. He has climbed new mountains, crossed a desert on foot and recently cycled 13,000 miles around the world. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society London and a Guinness World Record Holder. He aims to encourage more people to live adventurously. Read more...


  1. 1

    Michael Halls-Moore

    That is an awesome post. As usual, your activity list is inspiring! A cold shower does sound more appropriate. I remember in Tanzania having cold showers for a month. After the first couple, I didn’t even think about the temperature, I was just glad to be slightly cleaner…haha! Funny how priorities adjust in different situations.

    I had a look at the dictionary definition of excuse after reading this article and found this – “to regard or judge with forgiveness or indulgence; pardon or forgive; overlook (a fault, error, etc.)”.

    I don’t think you need to seek forgiveness, nor do I see tyre pulling as an indulgence, fault or error. You say here:

    ‘These things are pretty weird at the best of times and, although I enjoy them for their own sake, it doesn’t mean it’s not testing or awkward when people ask me: “Why?”.’

    Bear in mind that the activities are only ‘weird’ in the context of some sort of perceived cultural convention. If everybody in the world pulled tyres and you didn’t, you would be the ‘weird’ one. [I somehow suspect that you would be the guy not pulling tyres, however!]

    If you want to drag tyres, then drag tyres. To me that fits with who you are – somebody who pushes boundaries and tests assumptions. If you enjoy doing it, then enjoy it and be proud of it (not that you aren’t, I know you are!). Being proud and confident in the ‘crazy’ stuff also engenders confidence in others to test their own assumptions and try these activities out too. I think excusing your participation in weird activities gives people the justification to excuse their LACK of participation in these activities.

    If others are questioning your behaviour, even slightly, then they’re not people who enjoy being moved out of their comfort zone. In essence, pulling tyres or taking cold showers doesn’t fit in their reality (which is probably a function of everyone else’s reality anyway) and it makes them uncomfortable.

    To be frank, I think it would be stranger if you WEREN’T doing these things, as then the culture I perceive you belonging to would conflict with your actions to some extent.

    That’s not to say that these two “cultures” are mutually exclusive, they’re clearly not, which is essentially the whole point of this web page! I just like to have people say “Wow, cool. That really fits with what you’re doing and who you are.” as opposed to “Why are you doing that? Nobody else does and I certainly wouldn’t do it.”

    I guess that’s why it’s best to associate with people who are always optimistic, helping out and generally motivating you AS WELL AS people who could certainly be motivated by people like you but just need that little kick of confidence. That’s where websites/people like The Next Challenge and Esc The City come in!

  2. 2

    Steve Blethyn

    I was just out walking the St Bernard-Cross-Newfoundland beasts one day when I was asked why I had a very large, heavy looking rucksac on my back. “I’m training for Another Long Way Down”, I should have said, but just could not resist casting a gaze at the 2 x 150lb dogs by my side and saying without the slightest hint of a smile, “Pooper Scooper and Bags!” The lady didn’t even flinch at this reply but said, “Ah! a responsible dog owner!” I managed to get a good few hundred meters down the road before the grin became obvious.

  3. 3



    I love the definitio – great comment.

    Thought processes like that should be up on your own blog (http://www.michaelhallsmoore.com) not hiding away on the comments section of mine!

  4. 4


    tim, i really feel like leaving the office, going home, getting into my $5 opshop sweatpants, snuggling up in a blanket with a cup of hot choc, listening to good music, and just DOING NOTHING. also, i feel like dropping this whole phd thing.

    you cool if i use you as an excuse? pretty please?


  5. 5

    Michael Halls-Moore

    Yeah, you’re right…I did actually think of making a gag about that at the end of the “essay” :-)

  6. 6


    Hi Vania, I’ll happily take any resultant flak from your PhD supervisor this time but let’s not go abusing this excuse, eh?

    Enjoy the hot choc (mine had marshmallows).

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  8. 7


    Awesome post! I love that your doing something because you feel like it. I am a pro. long distance dogsled racer, not the usual job for a 30 yo British girl. I lived at a base camp for 8 months in the Norwegian wilderness, no electric, now toilet, no water, 20 miles from a road, just 2m of snow & my dogs. So I totally get the “Why” question. I usually let the asker feel comfy & put it down to training. But sometimes I ask “why not” or “why do you watch TV?”
    I think its important to remember that all trends, fashions & eventually rituals & traditions performed by the majority, were started by the individual, a weirdo that refused to be a sheep & chose to be different, then it caught on, got popular, someone figured out a way to make money from it, so it was marketed & thus it became “normal”. Take Snowboarding. I wonder how many “Why” & “weirdo” & strange looks, the guy that rode a plank of wood, instead of buying some skiis got? Adventure comes from choosing the path of MOST resistance!

  9. 8

    Tim Moss

    Thanks Mel. It sounds like you’re fighting the good fight!

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