Tuesday, August 23, 2011

What I’ve read recently

Oops, I was also going to mention a couple of books in my “re-start” post, there you go that’s why I cycle slowly – more haste less speed.  I also forgot to mention that although I keep adding Blogs onto my reading list there has been a drop-off in the number of Posts coming out recently. Mind you I am reluctant to add too many in case I get a deluge of articles. As you might imagine many of them are associated with cycling and I guess that between the nice weather and it being the time for Summer vacations (holidays).

So what have I been reading well quite a few books, most of them not sufficiently noteworthy for me to mention. Anyways the first is this one.  “Two Wheels on my Wagon” by Paul Howard. I have just finished reading a book called “Cycling the Great Divide” about the “longest off-pavement bike route on the world” and seems to be supported by the Adventure Cycling Association.  Now the Cycling the great Divide is  book is more of a route map than a gripping narrative. But I like to dream and it sounds a wonderful thing to do, although I am not sure whether I could find the time.  I used to read a chapter every few days.

Then I saw Paul Howard’s books and thought wow – they “race” it. Or rather they tour it – one stage  - 2745miles/ 4418 Km from the Canadian Rockies to the Mexican Plateau. What attracted me to the book was both the subject and the fact that somehow Paul with almost no MTB experience and a young family in England decided to give it a go.  I didn’t dip in and out of this book I read it through – and thoroughly enjoyed it. I still dream about the Tour Divide, but I am planning on giving the Land’s End to John O’ Groats’ ride another go next year, ten years since I last did it. (The necessary permissions have been negotiated with my wife - - now all I need to do is build up my fitness for next year (and of course book it).

The other book is a “business book”. Google seems to be everywhere and have been around for “ever”. However it hasn’t and this book – “I’m feeling lucky” by Douglas Edwards, employees 59 in Google is a timely reminder that Google hasn’t been around that long and it had its fair share of battles as it grew.

What I do like about it though is the way the strong culture comes through. Indeed it is that strong culture that gives the author pause for thought. Personally I think that a corporate culture is what helps align and bind the employees of a company towards a common purpose. Indeed a good culture is able to transcend the employer-employee relationship and I have long been a believer that a good team of will beat a loose group of “stars”.



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