The Year Was 2016

The Year Was 2016

CategoriesAutomotive · Craft Beer · Life · Travel

Some pretty crazy things have happened over the last year. I thought it would be fun to go through the things I saw as highlights from my year. I’m stickily going by Instagram photos to help me remember those good times.


12519220_480568728794142_1359220811_nKicking it off literally with this dirty photo from the aftermath of playing bubble soccer. It was actually something I’d always wanted to do after watching hilarious online videos of the sport a few years prior to 2016. When getting wind of mini exhibition games you could sign up for, I had to say yes. It was indoor clearly, and it was also clearly very warm inside those bubbles. They smelled of bleach and other cleaning products and would fog up a bit but it was something that everyone should experience.


12628025_968631033173006_1483511729_nThe three of us of the 400 Project went to a book signing by quite possibly my favourite writer Pierce Brown. I couldn’t go for the standard handshake photo so I asked him to arm wrestle me.


12797809_234230456920699_1522044615_nKnocked another item off my bucket list in March by building my first personal computer. I used a website to help gather what parts would work for my build and then hunted down prices I could work with, ordering from a few local businesses. After getting all the parts it seemed at bit daunting considering there were no instructions really. The case had a few I could go off of and most of the parts only had one plug they could possibly fit in. I felt like I was building a robot, it was awesome. Oh, and it works. That’s how I’m typing this article out right now.


12965287_1102037379857629_1322633198_nApril was the month of concerts as I got to see two bands that I have been blasted into my ear drums for at least half of my life so far: August Burns Red and Underoath. Both concerts were packed but nothing was like the Underoath crowd, we could barely hear the singers Spencer and Aaron over the crowd the majority of the time.


13116685_1740227656252524_1018132663_nThe conception of this project took place in a Toronto pub. Naturally like all good ideas it was over a few pints and talks about how work at the time wasn’t fulfilling enough and that as a great group of friends we always seemed to work well together and push each other creatively. There needed to be something to be able to push towards like their used to be.

13259590_1290788494283953_896002891_nMay was also the month I attended my first Drift Event. After finally getting coilovers for my car (adjustable suspension, something I have sought after for many years), I made the 300km voyage out to the racetrack with old tires in the hatch. Threw them on for a couple of runs and swapped them back out to my street tires for the drive home. It was a lot of fun, on a really hot day for a car with no AC and a busted cooling fan.


13381267_1244617588884145_572112628_nAnother big step for me was making a trip with a hardcore racing team down to Gingerman Raceway in Michigan. I say big step because I’m usually not one to step out of my comfort zone and go on a road trip with people I don’t entirely too well. They are really good friends now and we had more fun than I can ever remember having on a motorsports adventure. The days were long and the mornings were very early.

15101507_1923554934539638_8850623851143364608_nIf it wasn’t for this trip I wouldn’t have been able to check another item off my bucket list. Taking a photo of a car on a racetrack. We got up at 5 in the morning to tow the racecar out onto the track in complete darkness. (This car is extremely loud and would have literally woken up half the venue. As the sun rose we got our moment. More photos here.


13725634_557247461150149_224821415_nIt’s summer, you have to go camping. And camping we did. In July I also got my new job as the Graphic Designer for Redline Brewhouse, a local brewpub I’ve had the pleasure of working with in the past through my old job.


13649276_1780000118922379_49076039_n I finally stopped dilly dallying and ripped my engine out of my project car. Here’s the new heart getting installed.

13671092_324610037929216_1792195905_nI got myself an early birthday gift in the form of a new car. Everybody loves new things, I particularly enjoy when they are car-related.

13573436_644031199096877_1602574453_n After stalking photos of a local hot rod show, I finally took the voyage to go see one. Not only that but I got to ride down in a ’50s rat rod.


14099639_1274868212563288_1455196898_n We launched the 400 Project after much discussion and prep. We may have been stoked (or a bit drunk…)


14727469_1068964673220729_8066162900756070400_n In October I went to sell my Subaru but after a few not-so-serious buyers I did the math and found that it would be cheaper to drive it through one more winter. So as the Mazda and the Lexus went into hibernation I had to take some crummy photos of the three of them.


15035562_317314661987625_5901950617131155456_nHaving a niece in the house half the time means more nostalgia, and the ability to play with old toys again and not seem like an old weirdo.


15253296_331433383916659_8245872973894909952_nDecember was just jammed full of great craft beer. Starting it off with a special cask of this Amber with coffee at my work.

15338348_1684354161856249_9062930784733626368_n After a mini panic attack with some printing issues we got this beauty out just in time. A small run just under 400 bottles but they all sold out within 48 hours. This was also around the same time our main American Pale Ale got praised on CBC’s website as one of the 12 beers you ought to be drinking this holiday season.

15624095_144062882751105_8701135620325507072_nAnd finally to end my article, a big ol’ growler from Great Lakes Brewery. ‘Twas a wonderful porter brewed with vanilla and bourbon to kick off the New Year’s Eve celebrations.

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After hours you can find Ben enjoying a beer while working in the garage. Or working on another digital project, enjoying a beer. The common denominator is beer.

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