KickStarter Project I’m Backing


Sounded cool:

Amazing Song + Video


Florence blows my mind again, amazing song and awesome video.

The MPAA Have Jumped The Shark: Chris Dodd You Are A Tool


Listen at this idiocy by the MPAA and their mercenary leader Chris Dodd:

” It’s a dangerous and troubling development when the platforms that serve as gateways to information intentionally skew the facts to incite their users in order to further their corporate interests.

A so-called “blackout” is yet another gimmick, albeit a dangerous one, designed to punish elected and administration officials who are working diligently to protect American jobs from foreign criminals. It is our hope that the White House and the Congress will call on those who intend to stage this “blackout” to stop the hyperbole and PR stunts and engage in meaningful efforts to combat piracy.”

Clearly the guy is confused about what side he is on, he is the one on the sinking ship trying to bail water as fast as possible instead of building a better ship. Of course he is just a merc and making a living. It’s sad to see yet another failed business model sliding away and instead of learning from their stupid brother RIAA they continue down the same path.

Hey MPAA, here are some things to think about…

The internet is going to get faster and faster with bigger pipes. People want things to be easy, if you don’t provide an easy way to watch any movie or tv show someone else will. Before you run out of money I suggest building a robust platform where ANYONE can access your movies through an API and is charged for them. Then you can have Netflix competing with lots of other startups and you still get paid. Or just buy Netflix or Hulu and put all the movies/tv shows there and knock down the old archaic licensing system. If you can’t adapt you will die.

Political action to stunt the technological growth of your own country will not end well.

Peru: Cusco, Sacsayhuaman, and Pisac


Flying from the humid coastal jungles of Panama to the high altitude and cold of Cuso Peru was a bit of a shock for my system. Cusco is located at ~11,500 feet altitude and there are 40% fewer oxygen molecules per breathe. So for the first few days I didn’t do much beyond slowly walk around the city, drink copious amounts of water and coco tea, and wonder what the hell ancient people were thinking when they decided to live here. Seriously!!! I like jogging up the stairs or jumping around, but not when it feels like my heart is going to explode and I can’t talk because I’m so winded. Did you know this is the continent’s oldest continuously inhabited city? Maybe it was just super defensible because half the attacking army coming up from the valleys would die during the march or not be able to swing a sword or throw a spear due to lack of oxygen. I can’t believe the Spanish were able to conquer this place.

Rose and Steve made it into town last week and we went up to the ruins above Cusco (Sacsayhuaman), we didn’t go in as the tourist tickets are way too expensive (we didn’t have enough cash). Peru is gouging the crap out of people. It was $28 USD just to go in plus it included 3 other places that you might go too, or you pay ~$60 bucks for a ticket to a lot of places. But the shitty thing is it is only good for 2 or 10 days, and some places you can’t even buy a solo ticket if you wanted too.

Yesterday we did a big trip to Pisac to go to the market and do a big hike above the city. Most of the pictures are of the amazing ruins there. It was a pretty tough climb but worth it. Once again the ticket was ridiculous and they wouldn’t take our slightly old student cards. In Peru you are only a student if you are under 25… We ended up bribing the guard $28 USD to let the 3 of us in, instead of the listed price of $28 USD each…

Things not to do when you are living at ~12,000 feet:

1. Get your hair buzzed, then wear a visor with no top. It results in a bad sun burn on the top of your head despite thick hair.
2. Move quickly, your heart/lungs might explode.
3. Hangovers are 100x worse, don’t get one.
4. Try to play any type of instrument involving air. Peruvian kids trying to sell flutes at the top of mountains need to move their marketing to the bottom of the mountain. Or carry mini oxygen cans around.

Things to do when you are living at ~12,000 feet:

1. Drink, my drinking efficiency is equal to a small asian woman. I have a couple Pisco Sours and I can’t walk straight, it’s fantastic.
2. Eat lots of carbs, it helps with the altitude so I’m eating my weight in bread daily.
3. Eat fruit and veggies. I’ve had the best avocados, mangos, and oranges I’ve ever had in my life. They beat hawaii, florida, thailand, egypt, etc. Plus they are huge!

I’m taking Spanish lessons too which have actually gone pretty well. I’m terrible at languages but so far I seem to be picking up a few things here and there. For example I can recognize that everyone keeps saying I’m tall (alto!).

What else?
– I haven’t been able to run yet because of altitude/cold, but that is probably good as there are a ton of dogs around. Looking forward to sea level!
– Peruvians are super nice and chill. This is a huge tourist town but they are not too pushy and pretty respectful. Really digging it.
– Internet is a bit slow, I can do voice and all my work but sometimes voice isn’t perfect. And it went down once late at night for a few hours, as well as my backup 3g connection. At which point I went into shock.

I think that it for now!

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So I finally uploaded some pictures from Panama! I spent Dec 15th through early January in Panama and I had a great time! I spent Christmas with my dad, stepmom, and their friends in Volcan. Volcan is at about 3,500 feet altitude and an amazing place. The weather is perfect, no bugs, and beautiful views. Plus the beach is only 45 minutes to 2 hours away.

After that I headed back to Panama City for New Years with Sara who is in Panama for Peace Corp and Rose/Steve who are traveling in the area. Post New Years we all went to Sara’s site out in the Jungle which was fun. I only stayed for one night due to work and I’m super impressed with what Sara has done out there. The pictures are a mixture of Volcan, the apartment we were at staying, the city and skyline, etc. There are a few with some crazy colors, the sky was intense and my camera went crazy trying to capture it.

There is a really great one of the Rose/Steve cooking process too :)

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Running Summary For 2011 + 2012 Goals


This year was a great year for running goals! I ran two marathons on my own before getting injured due to changing my desk/chair setup and needing to take a long break. I basically got sciatic and learned to do some better core stretches. I’m rebuilding now and hope to get back up to speed soon.

For 2011 I ran 1,198 miles in a total of 175 hours. Which breaks down to 8 minute 46 second miles.

For 2012 I’m going to be traveling a lot through May so it’s going to be hard to do a lot of running, especially in South America where there are not great trail runs in cities. So I’m going to take it slow and try to rebuild up to about 100 miles a month and I hope to get up to marathon length again by the end of the year. And depending on how things go maybe an ultra at some point if I’m feeling great!

Year end book roundup for 2011!


There is a great online challenge called the 100 book challenge with the goal being to read 100 or more books in a year. In 2011 I beat 2010’s record of 111 books with 131 books read. I think I read a lot more fun ones this year as when I got a pretty bad case of burn out I just read and ran a lot. Here is the big list of all the books I read and short little mini reviews!

And now for my big roundup, I try to feature the top 2 books in each category plus a runner up….

Best Business Books

1. First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently – This was the most valuable book I read this year and I hope to read this every year. It basically explains what great managers do to keep their team happy and backs it up with as much data and examples as possible. And above all it makes the point I’ve come to believe that people don’t change. At best they can pivot 10% to 20% from where they are now, and it is more valuable to focus on their talents, and find ways to neutralize their weaknesses.

2. Good to Great: Why some companies make the leap… and others don’t. – Fantastic book by Jim Collins, this is a followup to his previous. This covers a lot of companies and what enabled them to become great companies.

Honorable mentions to The Six-Month Fix: Adventures in Rescuing Failing Companies, Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big, and Business Model Generation.

Best True Books

1. Factory Girls: From Village to City in a Changing China by Leslie Chang -This book is a must read for those interested in China and how rapid industrialization is creating huge social changes for women. The story of the girls working in these factories is just amazing, an entire generation of hustlers who could become entrepreneurs is emerging. I can’t wait to see what they do next as more opportunities become available to them and what values they instill in their children.

2. The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks, and Giants of the Ocean. This was an awesome awesome book and one of the best so far this year. This is about how waves are generated, the guys that ride them, and even some quantum mechanics.

3. Born To Run – The book that started the barefoot running movement, and just makes me want to run more and more! Even for non runners its a great book about what humans are capable of and how we might have run down our game by outrunning them. All in a well written book about a hidden tribe of super runners and a race against them by some American ultra runners (very short summary).

Honorable mentions to Brazil on the Rise and Out of Mao’s Shadow.

Best Travel Books

French Lessons: Adventures with Knife, Fork, and Corkscrew – An awesome book about traveling around and living in France and going to all these different food festivals! I highly recommend it, covered things like eating truffles, cheeses, snails, a wine marathon, etc!

I read a lot of nice normal travel books too, but nothing that stood out as just amazing besides this one.

Best Thrillers

This was an easy choice this year, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the two sequels were mind glowingly awesome! It was if someone combined the best of Law and Order SVU with hacking and a great mystery. Just fantastic writing, great plot lines, and the best thrillers I’ve read in a really long time. Go buy them!

Best Science Fiction / Fantasy Books

1. Hounded, Hexed, and Hammered. Fun books I highly recommend! Basically imagine all the religions and gods of the world do exist, on multiple planes, with earth being a place they can all jump into. This follow a very cool 1000+ year old Druid character living in Arizona and having gods mess with him.

Just an ok year for finding new scifi/fantasy.

Best Books About History…

1. At Home: A Short History Of Private Life by Bill Bryson. This was an interesting funny book about how the modern house and all it’s parts came to be. Plus all the segways and humor that only Bryson can bring to the table.

2. The Defining Moment: FDR’s Hundred Days and the Triumph of Hope – What an amazing man with the luck of timing, this book was fantastic and I hope we get another FDR soon so we can rewrite the social contract a bit more.

Honorable mention to The Wall: Rome’s Greatest Frontier about Hadrian’s Wall which is a trip I want to do at some point.

Best Bibliographies

1. The Faraway Horses – The story of Buck Brannaman who is the “horse whisperer”, really amazing guy and great story about his life. Check out this documentary on him too, just an amazing person.

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This is bwb’s personal blog so he can share his thoughts with the world, however scary or silly they might be. Plus family and friends can track what I am up too, and where I am in the world.

I am pretty simple. I love Mangos. I love the ocean, although mostly at sunset as I’m a ginger. I love to travel, eat exotic food, read, and use my imagination. I love creating and developing ideas into businesses, understanding how all businesses work, and building cool stuff. I am a globalist and see the entire world as my responsibility and playground. And, I am married to an amazing woman who makes life even more fun :)! And, we are now the proud parents of Calico Jack :).