The chronicles of a frenetic, blurry and hugely fun weekend at Rock Crawl 1999 (May 21-23)
Some photos courtesy of Jonathan Yim
Thursday after work, I rushed home, packed, and got to the Tsawwassen ferry
terminal around 6pm. Ran into a bunch of RC-bound 'wheelers and spent the
next hour talking shop. Of particular interest was a silver long wheelbase
(LWB) Samurai owned by a fellow named, Rick, who works with the Olson
brothers in fabricating 4x4 components (you may know the Olsons by their
ultra trick LJ80 with the custom drooping air bag suspension system). This
LWB Sam had a Toy pickup axle in the front, a Land Cruiser axle in the
rear, SOA suspension with YJ springs, a Sidekick motor, and a pair of
transfer cases. Very nice.
Arriving on the island, we went straight to Sooke. We arrived close to
9:30 and the campsite was already very crowded. We squeezed in beside some
Lionsgaters and setup our tents. BC4x4 list members in attendance included
myself, Chris Waterman, Jonathan Yim, Jon Bruce, Andrew Bauer, Jo-jo Poole,
Martin Chung, Wil Girindra and some others whose names I have regretfully
forgotten. Much socializing and imbibing followed.
The day started off fine for me but not so fine for Jonathan. While in
camp, he discovered that his TJ was making weird clacking sounds when in
4WD. Suspecting a transfer case problem, he headed to Dumont Tire, the 4x4
shop in Sooke and unofficial support garage for RC99 participants.
I was assigned the tailgunner role for the Mystery Tour trail run. We
would head up Harbourview Rd and do the Mossy Hill loop and then any other
trails which Neil, the trail leader, chose. In our group of about ten
vehicles, two stood out: an orange short wheelbase Unimog, and a Chevy
pickup driven by a young woman. I say that the Chevy stood out because I
rarely ever seen women drive on the trails and even fewer have their own
4x4. Her Chev had a Detroit Softlocker in the rear, a front ARB and 35"
MTs. It also had ("had" is the operative word, here) a pretty nice paint
The big attraction on this set of trails was, of course, Cleavage Rock.
Half-way up Mossy Hill, Cleavage Rock has been getting a bigger and nastier
reputation with each passing year. Last year, slipping into Cleavage Rock
could result in dented rocker panels. This year, with the trough deepened
by winter rains, damage to the windshield frame was now a distinct
possibility. Scott Shannon provided thrills and chills when he tried to
conquer Cleavage in his open diff Land Cruiser. He pretty much
demonstrated every conceivable way to lift a tire and looked ready to flop
the 'Cruiser on its side a couple of times before finally admitting defeat.
The woman with the Chevy was up next. On her first attempt, she slipped
her driver's side into Cleavage. The front locker wasn't engaged because
she found it nearly impossible to steer when the ARB was engaged. Trying
it again with the ARB on, she had better control but again, the front
slipped into the crack. Fortunately, it happened at the entrance to
Scott Shannon tries one way...
...then the other to no avail.
Good news: very little damage here.
Bad news: on her next attempted, she put a huge dent
on the passenger side of the box.
Cleavage so the rock walls were close enough to cause any damage. On the
third try, this time without the ARB engaged (unbeknownst to her
spotter/coach), she tried again. She got further into Cleavage but her
line just wasn't right. The driver's side front tire had only sidewall
contact with the rock wall and slipped. The big Chev landed hard on it's
driver's side with a loud bang. Unshaken, the woman carefully backed the
truck out. The only damage was to the mirror and the recently installed
nerf bars. She was having trouble keeping a steady throttle. Too much
throttle meant loss of control. To little throttle to result in a stall
which could also upset the delicate balance and cause the vehicle to slip
into the crack. After conferring with her coach/spotter one last time, she
made another attempt with the ARB on. It worked. She was able to jockey
the big truck into the correct line and began driving over Cleavage. She
assumed she was out danger, wandered from the line, and the full-size Chevy
suddenly slipped, keeled over to the right, and slammed the truck box into
Cleavage Rock. With the damage already done, she drove the truck out,
dragging the side along the rock. It was a mistake that could have
happened to any one of us but she handled it well, admitting that she
didn't control the truck as well as she could have. She took the damage in
stride where I might have been extremely irate.
After Cleavage, we continued up Mossy Hill. As we climbed towards the
viewpoint where we usually stop for lunch and enjoy the view, I took an
optional line that cut diagonally across a rock step. With my wheels
crossed up, I parked the Jeep and snacked with the group while admiring the
view of Sooke and the snow capped mountains across the water. After lunch,
we climbed back into our vehicles to continue the trail. I drove my Jeep
all of three feet when I heard a POP and the explosive hiss of a blown
tire. I got out of my Jeep and saw what I guessed I would see. A
completely flat, passenger side front tire, gashed by the stud of my sway
bar. The extreme articulation, combined with the tight turn I needed to
get back onto the main trail forced the tire into the stud and ripped open
the sidewall. I assumed that this problem was alleviated when I installed
the wider Scout D44 axles in my YJ but I was obviously wrong. Hmm...that
brings the total to THREE tires destroyed by my sway bar. My spare was a
31", nearly bald mud tire. Yes, it was too small to be an effective
replacement for my useless 33" tire but it was all I had. With the
mismatched pair of front tires, the recently installed front locker made
the Jeep pull hard to the right whenever I accelerated. Fearing the
destruction of another sidewall, I very gingerly continued on, avoiding
extreme turning situations as much as possible.
On the way up Mossy Hill.
Snack break on Mossy Hill. 5 feet later I puncture my sidewall.
Once back on Harbourview Rd, I left the group and headed to Dumont Tire to
see if Jason Dumont would warranty my General Grabber (he did...it only
cost me $30 for a new, installed and balanced replacement). Jonathan was
there. The Swampers he bought from North Shore Offroad had arrived and
were being installed. His transfer case was diagnosed as being completely
devoid of ATF fluid which in turn caused all sorts of "bad things" to
happen inside his case, including the destruction of a shift fork and the
chain. He is SO lucky I happened to bring a spare 231 transfer case chain
I no longer needed. I was hoping to sell it to someone at RC99 but ended
up giving it to Jonathan instead. The shift fork wouldn't arrive until the
following day so his TJ was out of commission for the time being. Chris
Waterman and Wil Girindra pulled in while we were there. Chris was looking
for a slip yoke for his year driveshaft. It seems it had grenaded while Mr
Waterman was trying to bounce his way up Pigpen's Revenge. Wil showed me
some grease marks on his shirt where some of the flying shrapnel had hit
him. Being an avid fourwheeler and Ford nut himself (Chris' Jeep had Ford
axles and a Ford driveshaft), Jason was able to provide Chris with exactly
what he needed from his supply of 4x4 parts. Since Jason wouldn't be able
to get me a replacement tire until the following day, we all decided to
head back to camp, fix Chris' Jeep and go for a short trip up Cleavage Rock
since Chris hadn't seen it before. Wil, who was driving Fozzy's super
Toyota, headed back out to catch up with his group.
Lars contemplates the fate of Jonathan's TJ.
Once the driveshaft was repaired, we headed up towards Cleavage and almost
made it. We stopped when we heard a weird squeaking come from the shaft.
That's when we noticed that the pinion was pointing higher than it should.
Fearing that it might have caused the driveshaft u-joint & yoke to break
earlier in the day, we decided to turn around immediately and have a closer
Here's Chris showing us his broken yoke.
Back in camp, Andrew Bauer provided some very important help in separating
the axles from the springs. The perches were ok and had not allowed the
axle to twist. I made another visit to Jason Dumont to get some shims to
adjust the angle. He had some old Ford ones which almost worked but had
too much angle. Finally, they took some shims Andrew was using as spacers
on his Land Cruiser and sandwiched them in with the existing shims. This
made a dramatic improvement in the pinion angle. Chris' Jeep was ready for
the next day. More socializing and imbiding ensued.
The weather was absolutely gorgeous. After a fine breakfast put on by the
Sooke Lionsgaters, I had a brief chat with Roger Bell and went to get my
trail assignment: Doomicon. Hmm...this is a trail which Rob Bryce doesn't
like to do because of its difficulty. I know Rob and if a trail scared
him, it scared me just as much, if not more. Still, I was curious to see
it so today I would have my wish. Since Jonathan's Jeep wouldn't be ready
till later in the day, he would ride with me. Vern lent me a spare 33"
tire from his Jeep so mine was operational, even though that tire was
virtually bald. Our group today had minimum requirements of 33" tires and
front and rear lockers. The only exception to that rule was John Barron's
(an IRC member) FJ45 Land Cruiser pickup. It had 35" tires but only a rear
locker. He had never done the Doomicon before so he thought he'd tag along
to see what it was like.
The trail started off with some twisting through trees but the terrain was
pretty basic stuff until we reached the stream crossing and then turned
right to crawl along a scary side hill. The worst part was the beginning
where some of us experienced some rear end side slip but no one rolled
their vehicle. Ben Olson had the easiest time of it, adjusting the air
bags on his LJ80 so that the vehicle was level as it crawled along the
The trail twisted around to the left and began a tortuous uphill climb.
Large, football-sized rocks, were strewn all over the trail. The optimum
line was always changing as rocks were displaced by tires clambering for
traction. Vern O'Connor was in the lead with his CJ7 and climbed all the
way to the top. Behind him was Bad Joe, a well-known Washington offroader,
in his YJ Renegade with the new Warn coil-over suspension system. By the
time I had hiked up to the head of the line, Bad Joe's YJ was nearly
sideways on the trail with the driver's side Swamper clawing high in the
air. He was climbing out of the "Low-Side," a bypass around an extremely
off-camber upper line. A couple of times I thought Joe's Jeep might kick
up too high and roll over but he was eventually able to climb forward and
back onto the trail. Of course, this wasn't the hardest part. That part
was 25 M away when he had to climb over some huge rocks and up some steps
formed by stumps in the middle of the trail. He had to resort to winching
near the top and in the process, the sidewall on his rear passenger side
Swamper was holed and started coming off the rim. While his Jeep was being
stabilized and jacked up, some of the other trucks began their ascent.
Todd's (manager of North Shore Offroad) 4Runner made the trail look easy.
With his Marlin Crawler gears and the Interco radial tires, he pretty much
walked up the trail. Richard Sikich in his Toyota Extracab with Marlin
gears put in a similar performance. Andy James in his Nissan pickup with a
4.3L V6, twin transfer cases and a coil sprung Toyota solid axle front end
also made it up with no winching required. Even the "short" long wheelbase
vehicle, the LWB Suzuki made it up. The short wheelbase trucks, although
very capable, had much difficulty near the top where the steps impeded
their progress. Even the Olson's super LJ80 couldn't get to the top
unassisted. Besides Bad Joe's punctured tire, there was other damage. Jon
By airing up the downhill side air bags, Ben Olson was able to drive a level LJ80
across this sidehill.
Bad Joe's coil-over YJ gets sideways half way up Doomicon.
While trying to winch the last part of the way up, Joe punctures his Swamper.
Bruce backed his CJ7 into a tree, cracking his spare tire carrier. On the
way back down, Ben Olson took a bad line on one of the off camber sections
and put the LJ80 onto its side. The damage champ, however, was John
Barron. I was right behind him at the back of the group so I had an
excellent vantage point. First, while trying to exit the Low-Side, he
punctured the driver side rear tire's sidewall and lost the bead on his
tire. After cramming five plugs into the hole, he sprayed some ether into
the tire and threw in a match. WHOOMF! The tire was reseated and he used
his on board air to inflate it. He then amazed me by climbing out of
Low-Side with just a rear locker. The next obstacle he encountered was the
step with a stump in the centre of the trail. His rear diff kept getting
caught on the stump so he decided to start winching. When his passenger,
Jim Hassi (another Washington 'wheeler), tried to unspool the cable, the
winch wouldn't unwind. The solenoids clicked once and that was it. Then
they smelled the winch motor starting to get hot. Uh-oh. John knew that
the solenoids must be stuck and he jumped out of his truck to disconnect
the winch. Because of the extreme angle of his truck and the hood latch
didn't quite unlatch and precious seconds were lost trying to open the
hood. In the meantime, more and more smoke began to pour from the winch
motor. When we finally opened the hood, I handed my Leatherman to John and
he was able to disconnect the battery cable. By this time, the cable's
insulation was badly melted. With the winch no longer of any use, we
decided to see if Andy James could help out with his Nissan which was at
the top of the hill. Andy's winch wasn't working so we strung some cables
and straps together to reach the 'Cruiser and tried to tug it over the
step. It didn't seem to be working to well. John was wondering if there
was something that might be catching the diff pinion or driveshaft when he
suddenly heard the clanking sound of his driveshaft whacking the ground.
Uh oh. It must've taken a dent from the stump
and once weakened, it twisted a few times
and snapped in half. Jim Hassi set about removing the rest of the
driveshaft from the truck while we discussed what to do. Winching a heavy
vehicle like the FJ45 forward would be extremely difficult. On the other
hand, backing it down the trail, especially through Low-Side would be quite
dangerous, too. Being the optimist that I am, I suggested winching it
forward. John triple lined the vehicle with some pulleys to make it easier
for the winching vehicle, which was to be Todd's Milemarker-equipped
4Runner. Triple-lining a Milemarker made for an extremely slow winching
session. In the end, they were unable to pull the FJ forward so John began
backing it down with only front wheel drive. At one point, the truck
leaned into a tree and was caught by the cargo bar. Jim, Todd's passenger,
put a Jackall under the front of the FJ and we pushed it sideways off the
jack a few times, successfully clearing it from the tree. The next step
was to start digging out the high side line since it was the only sane
option if John was to avoid putting the 'Cruiser on its side. With that
done, he carefully backed down the trail and somehow managed to turn it
around with rolling down the hill. In all, we spent about five hours on
that hill. I wasn't even able to try to get to the top because I had to
turn around to make room for John. However, after seeing how the other,
very well equipped, short wheel base vehicles fared, I know I would have
had to winch to reach the top anyways.
Andy James made it to the top quite easily in his muchly modified Nissan.
John poses with his twisted driveshaft. If you click on this picture and examine
the larger version, you can see the bunch of tire plugs he crammed into his sidewall.
On the way back to camp, I stopped by Dumont Tire and picked up my new
tire. After the warranty fee and pro-rating, I only had to pay $30. Back
at camp, I met Micah, a BC4x4 list member. I heard that he had rolled his
CJ on the first rock face on Harbourview Rd so I asked him how it happened.
With some embarassment, he said that his Jeep, which had no front shocks
(and which I warned him about a few weeks earlier), started bouncing while
climbing the face. The Jeep started pivoting sideways and it rolled over.
His roll cage saved him from any damage but the Jeep was looking a little
more beat. I told him I'd avoid saying "I told you so," but I guess I'm
lying because I'm saying it now. :-)
This was the last official day of RC99 so a lot of people, including
myself, didn't want to stay on the trail all day. The DSS group were out
till 10pm the previous evening and I had no intentions of getting caught in
something like that. Fortunately, the Mystery Tour sign-up sheet had a LOT
of names on it so they needed more trail leaders so I was able to switch
Because there were around 18 vehicles in the group, the trail leader, Neil
Rimek, said I could take 6 or 7 trucks in a separate group. That suited me
just fine because smaller groups would get through obstacles much faster.
I pulled Jonathan Yim (TJ), Chris Waterman (YJ), Arman Littman (CJ) and
Dave Littman (EBronco), and Jon Bruce (CJ) from the big group and got them
to follow me. On the way to the trailhead, we were also joined by Jeremy
To speed things up, we bypassed the optional first rock face on Harbourview
Rd and went straight towards Mossy Hill. Along the way, we met up with a
group led by Jo-jo Poole. They were stopped near the Mossy Hill turn off.
Apparently, someone was goofing around, trying to drive his passenger tire
along the top of a log curb, slipped off to the right and high centred his
Jeep. It was Jo-jo. Tsk tsk. I jokingly chided him a bit for setting a
bad example and walked back to my Jeep. A few seconds later, Jo-jo's group
moved on and we took the turn up to Mossy Hill. We quickly made our way up
past the preliminary obstacles and off camber sections. My brother, Bill,
parked his Ranger today so I let him drive my Jeep. He had never been up
Mossy before but he was doing a good job piloting the YJ along the trail.
He was taking the obstacles one at a time until we reached Cleavage Rock.
He stopped and I got out to spot him through and take some pictures. I
think he was surprised that I was letting him drive my Jeep through
Cleavage. He made it through quite easily and we waited for the rest of
the group to catch up. One by one, I spotted each vehicle through without
difficulty. Chris Waterman came very close to driving off the line and
dropping his YJ into the crack but he saved it just in time. The last
vehicle up was Jonathan in his TJ. He had his new 33x12.5 Swampers
installed, his new Detroit Softlocker in the back, and new RE coils &
spacers giving his TJ around six inches of lift. That's why I was
surprised to see him have so much difficulty getting onto Cleavage. He had
come through here easily the previous years but today, he kept lifting his
driver's side front corner and then dropping it down hard and slipping down
the side of the rock. After a few attempts, his TJ slipped all the way
into the crack accompanied by loud metal scratching sounds. Amazingly, he
only suffered some scratched fender flares, a scratched mirror bracket and
scuffed tires. His wider tires kept the sheet metal away from the rock. I
knew he was pretty upset about the dismal performance of the TJ so I tried
to encourage him by telling him that his RE springs sucked. For some
reason, that didn't work. I clambered onto the high side of his TJ and he
slowly backed out and we conferred about what he was doing wrong.
Everything looked right but the Jeep just didn't seem to want to flex like
it usually did. I also think some of the Swamper's side lugs were grabbing
and slipping, causing the back end of the Jeep to de-stabilize. Jonathan
decided to give it one more try and he succeeded. Having been in his
position last year, I can tell you that it is a very stressful situation to
have difficulty on an obstacle where you risk damaging your vehicle AND you
have a dozen people watching your performance. I didn't envy him one bit. <g>
Jonathan was having problems getting his TJ positioned correctly for entering Cleavage Rock.
If your entry isn't right, this is what happens.
We continued trundling up Mossy, getting closer to the trail summit. Bill
stopped after we crested a small hill which was the end of an optional hill
climb. This climb was littered with large, half-buried rocks and loose
dirt. Ground clearance and wheel travel was a big issue. The proper line
depended on where your diffs were located and required lots of maneuvering
to miss the rocks. As expected, a few of the vehicles were stopped by
their diffs catching on rocks. Dave Littman and Chris Waterman both had to
stop and reconsider their strategies before succeeding in reaching the
crest. Jonathan's TJ also had problems. It didn't seem to be getting much
traction and eventually, it got into a position where it was partially high
centred on a large rock and the only way he could back off of it would put
him in a danger of rolling over. We strung out his winch to Dave's Bronco
only to discover that his winch no longer worked. That was weird.
Jonathan tested his winch Friday morning and it worked fine then. This was
definitely not his day. So while Arman and I coiled the cable around the
TJ's bumper, Dave unspooled his winch and pulled the TJ off the rock.
After a few more minor obstacles we reached the summit and began the
descent. On the way down, we all took turns high-siding our passenger side
over a rock in a vehicle-width gulley. It was a great test of suspension
flex. During Jonathan's pass over the rock, he started pulling a Swamper
from the rim, loosing a lot of air. Dave Littman hauled out his bottle of
CO2 and quickly re-inflated the tire. The tank was a converted fire
extinguisher bottle. Dave said it could fill 40 tires before needing to be
re-charged at $15 a shot. It was a nice alternative to having an on board
compressor and certainly more portable.
Bill watches Arman Littman attempt the optional hill climb.
The suspension articulation test we found on the trail.
Once we were back on Harbourview Rd, I traded places with my brother and we
continued on to Hill 35. When we reached the turn off, we encountered the
back end of another group so we had lunch while waiting for them to leave.
The entrance to this trail, which went to Crabapple Lake, was a series of
rock walls with dirt banks on both sides. Each wall was slightly angled to
our direction of travel which made for some interesting driving. The group
ahead of us included a nearly stock YJ which smashed its undersides on
several rocks as it was snatch strapped through. I winced each time I
heard the BANGS. Given the amount of time it took for the first group to
get through, I expected a lot of problems climbing the walls.
Our group made it through very easily and I wondered why it took the first
group so long. After another ten minutes we were at Hill 35. Hill 35 is
an optional hill climb which was named after two YJs at least year's RC.
Both had snapped their Dana 35 axle shafts either on his hill or just past
it. It was even uglier this year. Although it's short, it is covered with
loose, dry dirt and sharp rock fins. The top of the climb is actually a
trail which cuts across a hill side. This means that you can't shoot
Jon Bruce almost made it over Hill 35...almost.
Dave lost his valve stem near the top of Hill 35. Both front
tires were wedged between rocks which pretty much stopped his
straight up the climb because you'd have no space for your Jeep to turn
once at the top. In fact, for the rear wheels of my Jeep to clear the hill
climb, my front end would have to be climbing up the bank of the trail on
top. So, that means you had to crawl your way up, avoid the rock fins, and
turn hard right before reaching the top. I made it last year with only a
rear locker so I wasn't too worried even though it looked very, very
intimidating. I got my front end over the top but I had turned too soon
and now both rear tires were trying to climb over different rocks at the
same time. Backing down for another line wouldn't work because the
low-side tire would have dropped off the rock and possibly sent me rolling.
While I was stopped with half my Jeep leaning over the hill, the front
driver's side corner started coming off the ground. I stuck my left arm
out and the front tire stopped lifting. Dave Littman jumped onto my bumper
and the tire came back down. I'm sure the whole incident felt even worse
for my brother who was sitting on the downhill side of the Jeep. Chris
Waterman came up and declared that he was going to take the bypass. I
didn't blame him. Arman and some others from the group hooked my winch to
a stump and I was able to pull myself over the top. I got onto level
ground, turned my Jeep around and readied the winch for the next
contestant. Jon Bruce decided to give it a shot but lost traction just as
his front end came over the top as well. Then his carb flooded and the
motor wouldn't start at all. Using his winch and mine, we pulled him over
the top, got his CJ re-started and he pulled out of the way. Dave Littman
came up next and got his Bronco's tires wedged between two of the rock
fins. The passenger side front wheel got part of the fin wedged between
his hub and wheel rim. The valve stem ripped out of the wheel and the big
Swamper came off the rim. Backing down would have destroyed the hub so I
winched him up and he set about repairing his tire. He found the valve
stem and re-inserted it into the wheel. Taking his CO2 bottle, he opened
up the pressure regulator to around 120 lbs and used it to re-seat the
bead. That was a very cool tool. No one else tried the climb so we
continued a little further up and then looped back down to Harbourview Rd
and headed for the exit.
This is the entrance we took to get up to Hill 35. Chris is on his way back down.
Coming down the Second Rock Face, we saw a Cherokee which belonged to
someone at RC99. It was parked on the side of the trail with the passenger
side front wheel with the top cambered in to the fender. I had a closer
look and saw that the axle shaft had snapped, along with the axle housing
yoke. Pretty serious and expensive damage. That Jeep wasn't getting out
of there without a flat bed trailer or tow truck...unless they were
planning on doing an axle swap in the dirt. I took a photo for Doh! '99
and we continued on. At the First Rock Face, I stopped to give everyone an
opportunity to try climbing it. There were some local people picnicking
near the top. I asked them if they'd mind if we played on the rock and
they were extremely receptive to the idea. The driver of their Explorer
volunteering to move his truck further away from out path and everyone
looked for a spot from which they could watch the action. Jon Bruce went
first. He was trying to find some hard lines up the rock and after a few
tries, finally found one which worked. He was greeted with cheers and
applause from the audience. Everyone else worked the easier line to the
right and like Jon, each one was rewarded with a huge response from the
onlookers. As we were leaving, we were again cheered and applauded with
great enthusiasm. It was a pretty weird experience but it sure made me smile.
Broken u-joint, lower ball joint and probably axle shaft.
Back at camp, we ramped our trucks. There was a friendly rivalry going on
between Jon, Chris, Jonathan and myself. It turns out that Jonathan was
the big winner and I was the big loser. The order was: Jonathan (11??),
Jon (11??), Chris (10??) and then me (1070). And then we found out that
Jonathan Poole beat us all in his near stock CJ5 with a score in the 1200
range. I thought that was hilarious.
Jonathan's TJ redeems itself by ramping very well.
It was a great weekend. It was too bad that Jonathan's TJ was out of
action for two days but I think he still managed to have a good time,
anyways. As usual, the best stories and best memories came from the
breakdowns and mishaps where we ended up working together to handle the
situation. I came away from the IRC with a great way to avoid sway bar
induced tire damage, thanks to Jonathan, and lots of great ideas I can
steal from the cool vehicles I inspected. Jeremy Platinga provided graphic
evidence that a good driver can overcome huge differences in vehicle
equipment. Besides the awesome 'wheeling, there were fun times had in the
evenings and I really wish I could provide details about a certain sponsor's
representative playing the punching game with an IRC member but
sometimes I have to exercise some discretion in what I write about.