BigSmoke

17 years old, carrying a big boulder
1999 – at 17 years old,
à la Boucoule

I am BigSmoke. But I'm really Rowan Rodrik van der Molen, whose younger version thought that BigSmoke made me sound cool. The drugs went; the alias stuck.

Carrying the boulder on the left is me at seventeen. If you find something heavy in your way, today, I might be able to help. I am no longer seventeen and have moved things bigger than boulders.

Beyond the bragging, one does not make big things move without the help of others. There is a limit to the weight that you can carry alone. That then is the point ⑴ of this page: to showcase the areas in which we might be able to help each other. The other point ⑵ is for me to keep my purpose clear.

If you intuit (♥) that our purposes may align, feel free to contact me, as long as you understand that I'll (at least try to) feel free to say “no” to your requests or to altogether ignore your 📧. ☮️.

Don't contact me for “Great Opportunities”✨, 🆕“unique offers”, and other such bullshit. Also, 🖕 off with your hating; it'll only annoy me. And I like being annoyed (which, consequently, you won't). Plus, I like fighting—especially show-fighting, where I get to 🚮 you in public.

The BULLsh** you can always contact me about is spelled with a capital B, a capital U, and 2 capital Ls; that 💩 is going to put 💻ing on its head!

In front of a purple plant

Smokes your problems, coughs fresh air.

Me
Rowan Rodrik van der Molen

Rowan, standing on Blackford Hill in the summer of 2012, photographed by Laurelin Lucinda van der Molen
Blackford Hill
Edinburgh – 2012

This has a plan: to become a happy little 🐷. His tech job at YTEC already keeps him warm and his belly full. (His family 💰 and the 🇳🇱 welfare state helped him along the way.) 🐷 2 + 2 little 🐱🐱 + some 🌿🌴 make 🏠 🏠. And, with all that comfort, ❄️🚿🚿, योगः, 中国武术 and มวยไทย keep the 🐷 from getting .

Homo sapiens is more homonid than sapiens, so the most sapient thing for this H. to do is to take good care of his 🐒-mind. This 🐒 wants (☑), and is very particular about who he keeps ✓ed in this —a ♀ who breaks out of the stupid , and climbs on top of it to 👙💃.

Outside this most private of private bubbles, there are friends and family on call to put into perspective the tribulations that flow from the oft-inflated need to earn societal respect and dominate other ♂♂. At his most ☮️ful, his work and hobbies (i.e., kickboxing & diving) afford him plenty of opportunity to ✓ this ☐, but sometimes he dreams of wider recognition, especially at times of narrow self-respect.

He used to want to grow 📈 indiscriminately in all directions at once (like a ), dreaming of universal admiration and acceptance, being unable to accept—let alone, love—himself. Having since undergone therapy, he can now make the 🐒 feel sufficiently secure to focus on more forms of self-improvement, as long as he pays conscious attention to his need for ♡.

2018's goal is for him to learn to respect himself, which requires him to ⒜ be deserving of respect, and ⒝ to give himself credit when credit is due. To combat self-sabotage and improve his discipline, he has given himself 3 rules: ① consumption is production; ② the training schedule is sacred; and ③ meditate daily. This may sound harsh, and it is, if he will needlessly beat himself up over any failure to comply. These rules are fairly constant, but there's also a maximum of 4 assignments, which will change when they're finished or given up; currently, these 4 are: ⓐ publish 7 2 more articles on Sapiens Habitat about PPPermaculture; ⓑ create an Angel prototype and share it with colleagues; ⓘ write a Magento 2 module; and ⓙ review an open letter for Myrna, one of my sisters.

Note that there's no need to work on these assignments; they don't have a deadline. Deadlines abound in the day job. It's all about the rule of ④: no more than 4 private projects at the time, to avoid all that free energy from being scattered with purpose nor satisfaction.

Stob coire nan Lochan
Schotland – 2012
Rowan, in 2012, photographed by Laurelin van der Molen

YTEC

YTEC empowers.

Biology student

Dispite my lack of a high-school diploma, I ate so much spacecake in early 2011 that the bad trip left me feeling it might be a good idea to study biology. After my zeroth year at university—an isolated couple of months of learning enough biology, chemistry, physics and maths to be admitted—I started my first semester after the summer of 2011.

In the foundation year, I was surprised to find that I had to work even harder to pass every course. I stepped up and I earned my foundation degree, without a single failed grade in my first year. Then feeling that I finally caught up, I dared to relax a bit, and, somewhere between my 2nd and 3rd year, I became the typical student more concerned with student life (and his student diving association) than with studying.

I majored in marine biology, which must have had something to do with the diving club I was assimilated in when I just started studying. That it had to be ecology may seem clear in retrospect given that my religion is wilderness. But, at the time, I made my choice based on in which field the practitioners had the healthiest, most outdoorsy look to them. That was because I had decided to leave professional programming behind me for good. That was before I knew I wouldn't persue a master and would instead be working at YTEC and enjoying it after finishing my BSc.

Wushu / Kung fu / Kickboxing / MMA

I like violence. I practice mine at Aihato, where, in 2003, I started out studying wushu (武術), which is literally Chinese for ‘martial art’. I fanatically practiced modern exhibition forms (taolu / 套路) for some years, until the sport declined in popularity. My talent was in traditional 南拳 (southern style), but my 師傅 made me practice Chángquán (長拳)—a northern style—without end. And I still want to learn drunken style (醉拳).

Aihato has since changed from being a kung fu school to a kickboxing/MMA gym where even the Sǎnshǒu (散手) has been supplanted by Muay Thai (มวยไทย) training. And I too have moved on to embrace these changes, although I still think of my own training as kung fu (功夫) training.

If I'm not too busy kicking and punching, I can usally be found 🚶ing, 🏃ing, 🏊ing, diving, climbing, jumping, 🚴ing, skating, or doing a hand stand. Chances are that I updated this text from a split or a 🐎 stance. That's what I mean when I say I practice kung fu.

Posing for Yamalube
Having fun with the models after a 2009 kung fu demonstration for Yamaha with the Aihato demo team.

During my first week (Sept. 2011) studying to become a biologist, I was invited to join G.B.D. Calamari a diving club for biologists. In May 2012, I earned my licence and could henceforth call myself NOB 1🟉 Open Water Diver. I ended up gobling up some more 🟉🟉 and even a couple of ෴෴. The ෴෴ mean that I'm a CMAS-certified instructor.

I'm quite proud to have preceded over Calamari for a good year—almost two. And I wasn't the shabbiest president; I think the club felt safe under my ‘reign’.

Writing

I write stuff. Some of the stuff I write is pretty good, some other stuff a little less so. Decide for yourself which is what.

Most of the writing I've done is tech writing. And I like to undress on paper and write about my nakedness. It's an exhibitionist thing. But, my favorite writing is writing about green stuffs, on Sapiens Habitat.

I've also tried to write a bestseller on a couple of occassions. All this has resulted in so far is a big stack of mostly unfinished manuscripts and a collection of rejection letters. It's actually quite embarassing. (No, not the rejections. The delusions are.)

My ego obliges me to say that I don't view this index page as particularly good writing. The style is very fiddly, which is actually a style I like to perform (as testified by the private, paper notebooks that I've been carrying around since 2015). And, then again, the audience I have in mind when updating this index is: me.

Technology

Jorrit Jorik van der Molen

Monkey brothers at work.
Monkey brothers at work

Jorrit staged his escape from The Netherlands in 2005, together with me and his then-girlfriend, by bike. When I left them to head back for Holland, they continued for a year of cycling and work across France. At the end, he sort of stuck to a camping in the Dordogne, were he returned for a few times after short stays in The Netherlands, until he started to freelance elsewhere in the region.

My brother is a strong physical laborer and he does enjoy working with his hands. But, wat he really wants is to build beautiful things. All his life, he has been wanting to create his own green paradise, crowned by an awesome castle, to host himself and his extended family.

He has very strong knowledge of ecological landscaping and an awesome network when it comes to anything ecology or construction related. If you have one of these typical golf-court type landscapes surrounding your castle, he would love to transform it into something more diverse and exciting for you. It's not as good as having his own castle, but it does come close. And it is a good way to save money for his own.

Send him a mail or give him a call if you feel that it's time to surround yourself with the real wonders of the world: beautiful hanging gardens.

Dordogne, 2010
Photo of our castle.

Hardwood Investments

Rowan taking notes in a Robinia tree stand

Through my dad, I've become involved with hardwood investments.

After investing in various teak- and other hardwood plantations in Latin America, he found his own company, Sicirec S.A., to promote the interests of his fellow investors. Although this proved very necessary, it also proved very difficult. Eventually, he had to seize all investor services to reinvent his company as the Sicirec Group, now responsible for its own plantation projects instead of trying to impose his ecological and financial standards on others.

In 2007, I took some information from the old Sicirec website and used it to start two wikis, an English one and a Dutch one. Together, the two websites hold well over a 1.000 pages.

Popko Peter van der Molen / Omega

Popko en Rowan proberen een zware boomstronk te verplaatsen. Foto gemaakt door Laurelin.

My dad is an evolutionary biologist who believes in the evolution of consciousness towards conscious evolution. Borrowing from Teilhard de Chardin, he calls this transition Point Omega.

In his time, he has done some research into learning behaviour and population cycles. This, combined with a lot of reading—too much of which has been about enlightenment and spiritual awakening—has given rise to his scientifically-sounding version of the familiar new-age.

Myself, I'm not of the scientific inclination, but I've created an on-line stage to put his theories to the test. If you're the truth-seeking type, you might find something there that you like.

Popko en Rowan proberen een zware boomstronk te verplaatsen. Foto gemaakt door Laurelin.

“De Oude Molensteen”

Hekje in de tuin van Molenweg 15, in ol' Eel

Ik bin in Nörg geboren, in t Drint. Non woon ik in Groot Loug (Grûnn), nait veur die eersten raize. Mien voa woont in Ol' Eel, vlakbie Grûnn. Doar heb ik ook veule joar'n woont. Moar in tuschentied heb 'k ook nog in Oosternijlaand, Woagenbörg, en zölfs in 't zuden, in Roermond, gezeten en een toerlang nog meer noar 't zuden, allendal in 't boetenland. Mien bruir woont in Frankriek en ook mien taante. Daarum.

't Hoes waarin mien voa woont hiet “De Olde Melenstien”. A-j wilt, ku-j doar slaopen, veur betaoling.

“De Oude Molensteen”
Molenweg 15
9761 VB Eelde
Netherlands
N 53° 07' 32" E 6° 34' 31" (map)