And the Winner Is... (cont.)

Here, read the winning essay from Outside's Seven Cycles contest as well as the four other finalists

    Photo: Photos by Nigel Cox

Brian Leverenz, Palatine, ILI am a unique and esoteric individual, a man of style and substance. I crack blocks of ice with my forehead and paint pottery with my toes. I propel my bicycle up extreme inclines and navigate my hang-glider through urban environments. I am the CIA’s only triple agent, have memorized the quadratic formula, can recite pi to 10,574 digits, and peel oranges with one hand while skiing down double black diamond runs playing frisbee with the Kennedys. I conduct seminars on combating international terrorism, and recently returned from sabbatical in Antarctica studying the effects of the Mt. Erebus volcano on the ozone layer. I dabble in the occult, can play the minute waltz in 51 seconds on 5 different instruments, and recently disproved the validity of Say’s Law, and Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, am the defending Kumite champion, and food critic for The New York Times. I soon plan to vacation by rowing around the world while writing the definitive textbook on Constitutional Law and a biography of Ferdinand Magellan. Despite these modest accomplishments, my one regret is that I have never owned or ridden a Seven. I deserve one. Until I have this opportunity, my life will be incomplete.

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