The gravel is always grayer


Don’t be pressured to purchase by the snobby world around you

By Elliot Chan, Opinions Editor
Formerly published by The Other Press. Sept 10, 2015

I won’t do it. I won’t spend eight hours a day, 251 days a year working to buy an expensive car or a fancy-ass watch or anything that I don’t need. I won’t do it to impress an employer, I won’t do it to impress friends, and I won’t do it to impress family. Life is so much more than being frivolous. Even if I am wealthy, I will not blow my paycheque on items that are supposed to catapult me to the next social class. Fuck that!

Today everyone is a connoisseur of some sort. Fashion, food, drinks, and so on. Everybody thinks they are experts at something and therefore are encouraged—nay, expected—to judge it. This type of snobbery extends from music, to food, to transportation, to neighbourhoods.

We have all behaved like snobs at one point or another. Most of us don’t even notice it. The reason is that we all have our own interests, and we live in a democracy where many around us don’t share those same values. Someone who is interested in beer and wine would know the lengthy details of how the drinks are produced, and which are “better.” Someone who is interested in cars would tell you that he or she would never go back to driving anything with a six-cylinder inline engine after leasing a vehicle equipped with a V6. Some who are interested in luxury handbags would tell you that it is so much more than a container for make-up products; it’s a statement on the social climate. I get it. We all have our things.

Learn to tell the difference between good and bad of course, but stop yourself from trying to discover good from great. Great is not that great. Great does not make you happy. Great is meaningless luxury. Great can be sustenance, yes, but it is also wasteful. Great is a lie you tell yourself so that you don’t feel bad paying double for a bottle of wine or a pair of shoes or a meal.

Having a palette for good things and appreciating them is much healthier than constantly demanding the finest. You deserve to be happy, but if happiness is having the best things in the world, you are just getting ripped off, my friend.

“Don’t be pressured into doing something you don’t want to do.” I feel like an elementary teacher told me this, but it was probably some television PSA I saw. Nevertheless, that statement stuck with me. But I don’t live by it. I do many things that I don’t want to do. I don’t like cleaning, but I do it. I don’t like waiting in long line-ups, but I wait. I don’t like paying taxes, but I have to. That’s just life. However, what I can control is what I want to spend my money on and I don’t have to spend it on what you want me to spend it on.

Strongbody Apparel Uses Nanotechnology from Ocean to Make Next Generation of Activewear

Posted by Elliot Chan on Nov 20, 2014

Originally published in Techvibes Media.


From high-intensity training to grocery shopping, Strongbody Apparel is ready to face any challenge.

The Vancouver-based athletic wear manufacturer is changing the way people think and wear their gym clothes. Gone are the days of jogging in a worn out hoodie á la Rocky Balboa: casual and professional athletes alike are seeking the next garment innovation that can endure the strain and sweat of training, as well as the functionality needed in order to reach their athletic pursuits.

“We never found anything that resonated with us,” explains Meghan Conyers, CEO and cofounder of Strongbody Apparel. “It was either not stylish or not functional. A lot of brands tout inspirational messages but don’t really live up to them. That is what we want to change.”

Strongbody Apparel spent almost three years researching and developing fabrics that can satisfy the fitness-driven public of tomorrow. The result is a product that combines enhanced functionality of active wear with sophistication of high-end fashion. Their unmatched innovative fabrics is suited with antibacterial nanotechnology—Chitosan, harnessed from crab and shrimp shells—that enables the garment to stay fresh over time, workout after workout, wash after wash, gym bag after gym bag.

“In Vancouver we wear our gear everywhere,” said Conyers. “We are always walking our dog. We are in coffee shops. We want it to be able to transition easily and be comfy wherever we are.”

There was a time when athletic wear in public was looked upon with the same distaste as those walking down the street in their pajamas. Now with a more active attitude towards fashion, wearing sporty apparel to run errands is the comfortable norm. Strongbody Apparel is reaching out to the market that grew up with athletic clothing and delivering a sense of practicality.


“It’s like jeans,” says Conyers. “There used to be just Levi’s and now there are tons of higher end, smaller brands that are catering to a more educated consumer.”

Strongbody Apparel wants to be seen in a different light from those over-branded, neon coloured activewear seen on the racks of department stores. It doesn’t want to be another “knock-off” product. While big name brands have worked to build a slogan-spewing culture, Strongbody Apparel focused on innovation: breathable and moisture wicking, wrinkle and pill free fabrics, and zoned ventilation construction to name a few, earning the people’s trust in activewear back.

“We are the crossover of active wear into streetwear,” said Quincy Samycia, co-founder of Strongbody. “It’s one of those things that is happening that people don’t even realize it’s happening. We are on the front end of that and we are driving it home to people.”

Strongbody Apparel’s Kickstarter ends on December 4 and it has earned approximately $20,000, after achieving its goal with 24 days left.