I´ve been travelling for some time now. Something like 14 months, I
think. It´s been wild to say the least. I´ve been to South East Asia,
India, Northern Africa, Europe, South America and Central America. As
I´m writing this I´m sitting in a little Internet shop in La Chorrea,
Panama. When I left for this trip I had no desire to come to Central
America. But, here I am, it´s kinda strange how things turn out.
A few months into my trip I made a commitment to myself to take a
few months and do some type of charitable work. My initial thoughts
were to spend some time in an orphanage in South America. After
witnessing the extreme amounts of poverty in India and elsewhere I knew
that I had to do something to give back. After doing a bit of research
I found that companies ¨offer¨ to place you with a non profit
organization so that you can do some type of charity work. The only
downfall to this is that this ¨offer¨ comes with a price tag. These
companies charge you a monthly fee and some even charge you an upfront
fee. I don´t know about you but I´m volunteering my time here and I
don´t feel like it should cost me any fees up front. What´s up with
It was about 3 or maybe 4 months ago when I was in Santiago de
Chile. It was time to make a decision about the charity work that I
wanted to get involved with. I had just finished a Bikram yoga class, I
was in the shower, cooling down (great visual right?) when this idea
came to me. Instead of my original idea I wanted to do something that
used my talents and skills. I also wanted to incorporate travel and a
physical challenge. But more importantly I wanted to do something
meaningful for an organization that was helping people, especially
kids, who are living in poverty. I wanted to create.
So...I´ve decided to ride a bike, yes a push bike (no motor) from
Panama City, Panama to San Francisco, USA. I´m doing in hopes to raise
awareness and money for starving kids in Central America. I´m working
with an amazing organization, Plan USA, who´s mission it is to
eradicate the problems that children are facing who live in these
horrible conditions. The ride is going to take 3 months. It´s about
5,500 kilometers and goes through 8 different countries. It is by no
means going to be easy. It´s going to be the most difficult thing,
physically and mentally, that I have ever done. It´s a wild idea. It´s
possible and I hope to raise $15,000 for the cause.
I´ve been preparing. I´ve been training. And today I finished my
first day. About 35 kilometers from Panama City to La Chorrea. I´m
lucky enough to have a great buddy, Mike, accompany me for the first 2
weeks. Mike and I go back to San Francisco State University. We were
having fun, telling stories, having a bit of a laugh but when our taxi
driver dropped off us on the shoulder of a freeway (the starting point)
reality set in. Were both prepared, have the proper equipment, and good
bikes. But nothing really prepares you fully for the first day. So here
we were near the Bridge of the Americas about to start a journey of a
lifetime. Big rigs, buses and cars flying by us on the Pan American
highway. Life doesn´t get much better than that...right? We took it
slow, dodged a few buses and narrowly missed an assortment of road kill
and finally made our destination. The first day was a bit slow,
tomorrow we will pick up the pace.
My hopes are that by doing this I will be able to show to people
that there are problems in this world that need attention. But more
importantly there are people and organizations that are doing
everything they can to make a difference for the children that face
these problems on a daily basis.
Here at the GSBN we've been thinking about how to freshen things up for
the new year. Some have referred to this mission was "GSBN 2.0", "The
Semantic GSBN", or "GSBN-book". Our current bloggers are a doing great
job, however, as a blog network it's always good to keep things dynamic. Many
leadership theories advocate that the key to organization change is
people change. That is why I have accepted the mission to travel to
the state of Indiana to recruit new bloggers for the GSBN.
So you may want to know why I chose Indiana. Sure, sure, the hotbed
of blogging is in Silicon Valley, New York and D.C. But did you know
that Indiana's state motto is "The crossroads of America"? What an
interesting viewpoint to have as a blogger! Additionally, the Indiana State website has
rounded corners and user-ratings for each page, you can't get more 2.0
then that! Indiana's main product is hogs, if my fellow GSBN's recall,
the most successfully selling product at our garage sale was bacon!
Indiana means "Land of the Indians", last time we did our GSBN census
we did not have any Native American representation. I think the case
for Indiana is pretty clear cut.
I will be traveling next week on the mission to recruit at least
three new members of the GSBN. I will be blogging from the road to let
readers know about my progress.
At this time I'd like to give a
shoutout to my Mom. Thanks Mom for keeping my "Indiana - U.S. State
Book Report" from 4th grade.
In today’s economic climate, you
would think people would take time in completing well crafted resumes.
Lately, however, I have had the fortune or mis, your call, of reviewing
several hundred resumes for an entry level position. Now I am
definitely appreciative to have some choice, but honestly am I the only
one who believes in the 1 page rule. That would be, for those
who don’t know, a resume should only be 1 page long because the reviewer
is going to look at so many of these things that any more will get ignored.
I can’t tell you how many 3 to 4
page resumes I have reviewed in the past couple days … FOR AN ENTRY
LEVEL JOB. This is ridiculous. At first I thought, maybe,
just maybe my printer was messing up and printing things at extreme
font and margin sizes, but this would save maybe a page if things were
off. Look, I’ll give you 2 to 3 pages if you are applying for
a C-level position, but really multiple pages to describe how you are
qualified for entry-level!!!
I know the economy is bad and you
want to impress me, but you aren’t going to do it with several pages.
All you are going to do is piss me off and make me say no. If
you can’t make an impression in 1 page, don’t bother applying.
I recently moved into a new
apartment but am not quite convinced that I am living there alone.Several occurrences since my move-in
date have caused me to wonder if I am experiencing a haunting.Now, from what I understand about
ghosts, they're generally in areas – parks, houses, hotels, etc. – with a
history of some sort of evil and associated death.Since my apartment building is only 2 years old, I find it
difficult to believe that much has happened there that would be inviting to a
ghost.But then again it is San
Francisco, so who knows.
Incident #1: Restless TV.The first night that I moved in, I set
up my TV with an antenna that I'd used forever (yes, I still use an
antenna).It's a new TV (less than
4 months old) and a good brand with apparently no weird issues, and I hadn't
experienced a problem with it before this incident.Well, as I was flipping through the 5 channels trying to
decide which ridiculous show to watch, the TV decided that I was going to watch
everything.Remote down, backed
away from the machine, turning it off and then back on, all the TV wanted to do
was flip through the channels.Needless to say, I was stuck watching movies.
Incident #2: Misplaced
pillows.Upon returning from
visiting family for the holidays, I discovered my couch pillows on my bed,
neatly placed side by side on my bed pillows.This may not seem like that strange of an incidence, but I
would NEVER move my couch pillows to my bed.
Incident #3: The Ghost Whisperer.
On the same night that I returned home from visiting family, I turned on the TV
and went about making dinner, not really paying attention to what was on.As soon I realized that, again, the TV
was flipping through the channels, I walked over to it in frustration and just
stared at it for a moment trying to figure out what could possibly be going on.
Well, as soon as it had my attention, it stopped.The show that it stopped on: The Ghost Whisperer.
Incident #4: Where is my goddamn phone?!?!Some time went by between incident #3
and the happenings of this last weekend.In fact, it had been so quiet that I thought for certain my ghost had
tired of me and moved on… until last night.I was cooking dinner and carrying on various text message
conversations, leaving my phone in the same location on the kitchen counter
after each message.Yet every time
a new message came in, I turned around to check it and my phone wasn't
there.Literally, I had to search
my apartment for my phone EVERY SINGLE TIME a new message came in.
Is all this a coincidence?Am I just losing my mind?Only my ghost knows.
So one of the new things I introduce to the blog in 2009 a la reality tv and all that jazz is reality IM'ing and chatting. This is where I'll have chats and actual arguments with friends and then after its done ask if i can post them to the blog and have readers decide who was right and wrong.
First discussion "you left a raider's license plate frame in my car and i probably threw it out after 9 months of being in there - so who's at fault?"
Took place on G chat about 5 minutes ago:
Eric: hey were you seriously mad over that license plate thing?
i wasnt mad
but i am annoyed
i know its my fault
for leaving shit in your car
but that two things i have left there that have just dissappeared
Eric: what was the other?
Servando: my sunglasses
well i mean i don't want to disregard all responsibility on my end
i understand where you are coming from
but if there is a plastic license plate case
in my car somewhere
for about 9 months
and no one claims it
or i don't know who's it is
i will probalby throw it away
cause otherwise id have to ask all my friends and no names that have been in my car
over the last 8 months
if it's theirs
Servando: how many peope would leave a raider license plate holder?
in car your car
two maybe three ppl?
me, berkies and ???
i cant get mad
Eric: dude all im saying is
Servando: it was me who left it there
Eric: if i was irresponsible enough to leave something in your car
for 9 months
without asking for it
or getting it myself
i wouldn't be tripping out
and calling you at work
Servando: im not trupping
i called because i remembered
and it was lunch
so i figured you would be out of the office
Eric: it's not a big deal
i did feel bad
and quite honestly id offer to pay for another one if i thought it was fair
Servando: no dude
i guess i just have different expectations
someone leaves somethign in my car...i notice it right away
and try to give it right back
and its not your fault at all
so dont trip its not a big deal
Eric: well you're saying two very different things in that sentence
so it's hard for me to take it lightly
it's not teh license plate
it's the process and principle
being discussed here
Servando: right but you have different expections on how the handle it
which i respect
i cant expect you to function the way i do and vise versa
we do things differently
im respecting the way you handle it
and its my fault
and im over it
thats all im saying
me: i respect that
and as a take away for me
if i see something in my car from n ow on
ill try my best to give it back to whoever i think it belongs to
I had a
plan; granted I’m not a huge believer in new years resolutions,
I was going to write about the few that I made for my self last week
(ride my bike more, stop dating guys with serious ex-girlfriend
issues, abuse my friends in-apartment laundry more often, etc), but
then I went grocery shopping and HOLY HELL WHAT THE SHIT IS THIS?!
grocery shopping on a Monday night is an awful idea, if not the worst
idea in the history of mankind, but I was dropping off some things at
a friends house in the Marina and thought, “well, I do need
KIMOSABE. I did it wrong. Epic FAIL. Any other euphemisms to
describe what a terrible choice this was. And here is why:
LOT: The Marina Safeway has what can be described as quite possibly
the worst designed parking lot in the whole Western hemisphere. Not
only is it always jammed with asshole drivers, but also clueless
pedestrians. I almost ran over 2 elderly ladies, 1 family whose kids
decided that running in zig-zaggy circles was an awesome idea, and 2
couples who were just chatting it up in the middle of the lane. BEEP
BEEP ASSHAT, I’M COMING THROUGH.
BUILDING: I thought I was going to have an aneurism. WHAT THE HELL
IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?! Don’t you come to the store with
some sort of “plan of attack” like normal humans?? 98%
of Safeways are built the exact same; it’s not hard to make a
list, and attack the necessary aisles efficiently, and get on with
your shopping. At least I thought it was that easy. Guy in the
bread aisle with his cart parked right in the middle deciding if this
week it’s going be whole wheat or 7-grain. Couple milling
about the juices, arguing over which flavor of Capri Sun they want
(Pacific Cooler vs. Cherry). Mild or sharp cheddar….HMMMM.
Why is all the pasta gone? Is there a shortage on carbs? THE GREAT
PASTA FAMINE OF 2009 MUST BE UPON US! LET’S MAKE A SCENE!
Holy hell you people are BLOWING MY MIND RIGHT NOW! Am I the only
person who took less than 10 minutes (+/- a few spent dodging
completely self absorbed slow walkers and browsers) to get what I
needed and get out? Apparently so.
LINE: Is it just me, or are there other people out there who always
get the checker in the 15 and under line that takes a century to scan
produce. Seriously, how long does it HOLY CRAP is that guy STILL in
the bread aisle?! WHHHYYYYYYYY?
news? I didn’t kill anyone. Better news? I got the last box
of the pasta shells in the store. FTW.