Here is a glimpse of my life:
|I have been a Bootstrap entrepreneur
since my dad set me up in my own business as the janitorial subcontractor (broom
& cleanup, go4), for his business when I was 13. Since then I have usually had one
business operating and one or two in the dream stage/drawing board. Sure,
I usually had other regular jobs, lots of part time regular jobs; but there was
always a business in development.
(1973-74) In High school my buddy Peter Villalobos (Pictured ) and I made and sold candles for 2 years to earn our own money for a backpacking trip through Europe. Pete and I have maintained our friendship throughout the years. We grew up very opposite from the "how to make a living" point of View. Peter came back from Europe and got a job at the front desk of the Sahara Hotel in '74. As of 2009 - Peter is still working at the front desk of the Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas! He stuck to it. I couldn't stick like that. I've had more jobs than I can remember. In fact, I've been sort of exocentric in the way I make my living. I am usually creating or running my own "legal business" in one form or another.
I have never made a fortune in my entrepreneurial experiences. They have all been started from DIRT and developed to a point where they made a comfortable living. To date I have sold every venture after having proved the idea could be successful. Selling out just at the point of success upsets my son and others around me "sell out" about the time an operation becomes a viable business ready to really grow. They say I have a "Fear of Success syndrome" ?? I suppose I'm not into growth and wealth as much as I am interested in "the Chase", the development and making an idea work despite the odds. I've created and sold 8 viable businesses to date. I must be crazy.
|Some wild things you do
for adventure, some
17 (1973) I
bike and backpack across
with Peter V. for
The Europe trip
the (Running of the Bulls -
The European backpacking & biking adventure was chock full of exciting fun and adventure.
From nearly being dropped off on the Wrong side of Germany, to being stranded
between England and France during tidal storms to sipping Devenshire creme teas
with relatives on the coast.
I attended UNLV for a year - couldn't concentrate on studies with all the social life and at 19 I dropped out of classes and was a "Stow Away" on a Ferry bound for Alaska to get work on the famous Pipe Line. We took 200 cases of Coors Beer to Alaska for trading - it was better than money! Twice I drove up and down the Alcan Hwy. (I actually went back to Alaska for more punishment). My Alaska adventure was one where I learned some life lessons the hard way. When you don't get what you want - it is called "Experience".
After Alaska a cooled my heels for a time. Worked as a janitor at McD's & developed a business selling 15 kinds of cigarette rolling papers and assorted paraphernalia to local 7/11s and convenience stores. (after I got 15 accts I sold the little business for a tidy profit). I bought a brand new '76 Harley Davidson, got involved in treasure hunting and psychic phenomena and sorta got my mind a little out of reality for a time. It was a strange, interesting period of time. I gained from the experiences but happy to have it behind me.
the Harley in '76 I've always owned at least 1 motorcycle - usually several at a
time. I have always really enjoyed going on a long motorcycle
journey; camping and having roasted marshmallows contests over an open camp
fire. One or more Motorcycle Trips each year are prerequisite for my
sanity. I have bought and sold about 20 motorcycles to date. Loved
them all. I have several
Stories and reports to share if you are interested.
(1984) Broke, and out of work - Got married at 28 to a beautiful single mom named Maetie and her 5 year old son Josh. Soon I adopted Josh and he has called me "Pops" ever since. My wife Maetie and I developed a unique screen printing business we called PIA (Partners in Action). Another successful little business venture. Our specialty was multi-color Bandanna creation and design. Our products sold locally, then nationally and actually sold on the International market. Soon the business was creating a multitude of screen printed products and we relocated operations to Duvall Wa. and added a retail division called Sno-Valley Actionwear. (Up until that time we operated out of the Garage :) After 6 years it became quite successful and we sold the enterprise in 1990 (just as the business got to the point where it needed to hire and grow - "fear of success?). PIA Bandanna designs are still being produced and sold at REI and other retail stores around the world as of 2005. We even created "new" antique decor for the Mount Rainer Historical Lodge, for the Paradise Inn as well as many other creative designs many of which are still being sold 20 years later! My marriage lasted 10 years. It was the best & worst of times. Josh stayed with me & Pops & Josh experienced bachelor life for a awhile until he moved out on his own. After the divorce and sale of the PIA business I bounced around for about a year in limbo.
In 1993 I created and operated Sweet-N-Treats Outreach vending. I developed fundraising programs with 9 local charities, raising funds by putting out little candy machines throughout western Washington. It started with borrowed money and blossomed into 4 routes surrounding the Puget sound, and actually made money! What a concept.
My handle had become "The Candy Man Can -- and Does".
It was a "sweet job" but after I proved the idea would work with local charities the job was done and I began loosing interest. Sold the Candy business for a tidy profit in '98 Back to that "Fear of Success" I suppose.
I had been working part time as a jobs trainer for the state prison. One
"twisted genius lifer" was a computer guru; he of all people was my
inspiration and tutor on the computer and the newly discovered Internet. The
was - and is
Back in '95 the Web didn't even welcome Commercial Business! It was '95
when the first Real Estate business was publicly lambasted for doing online
to host my clients and run the business on-line. I now do web development
I hope to do more with this business than I have the others. I built this one to the point of being a viable business within 6 months. Now, instead of selling out ("Fear of Success" ), I need to consider bringing in some partners, incorporating and making it FLY. Ultimately I'd like to enable the business to have representatives do some traveling while earning an income all based around Internet development. That is a larger and harder idea to make happen than it might sound.
S/O Dulane at the base of a
huge old growth)
I've hiked many of the high meadows, lakes, hot springs & trails hereabouts and really want to get the time to do more of this kind of natural enjoyment. I have scaled MT Pilchuck-in snow (Dangerous assault at snow melt times, but what a blast coming down!), next time I do Mt Pilchuck I would like to sleep in the lookout tower on a summer full moon night, Cool.
Pictured is Dee at the base of a HUGE old growth cedar tree. Dulane (Dee), and I met in '96 and fast became an item. We are as good as
married, but I doubt we will ever get the paper. Dee and I joined worlds
pretty smoothly. We sorta adopted each others immediate family as well as
the X-family. Everyone is able to get along real well. We spend some
very enjoyable vacation and holiday time with each others X's, - like extended
For a spell we explored the outdoors and made many excursions to hot springs around the country. A favorite local semi private spot is the Scenic hot Springs where if your lucky; the sky is bright, and the pools aren't crowded the naked gourmet might be up there serving up a grand mountain meal for those who help haul up great weighted amounts of building and maintenance materials. Another great recreation for me in the summer months is going to Music festivals, This are events you can really let your hair down, get in the beat, get mellow and enjoy the outdoors. Live music is an amazing thing. Although I prefer varieties of the Rock & Blues I like most styles of music and dance. Our favorite is the twice a year Banks Lake Blues Festival.
I've been a Motorcycle enthusiast since 1970 when my dad got me my first bike, a Yamaha 100. I'm the Internet correspondent for the Washington Moto Guzzi Owners Club and I am the WebMaster for several motorcycle groups, and I host the MGCL which is a Moto Guzzi motorcycle Correspondence group with 900+ members. What's a Moto Guzzi you ask? It is an Italian Motorcycle, but more than that, it is an expression of Adventure. It is the reflection of SPIRIT I continue to enjoy Motorcycling and have been fortunate to own several different types through the years. You might enjoy my ongoing Motorcycle Story and adventures.
kidding! But, one taste proved that beer to be extremely tasty!
So, now we
some killer good wine
( 1998 ) Dulane (my S/O), and I have just recently moved into our own place up between Mill Creek and Bothell just 24 MI North of Seattle, WA. We live Just outside any city limits - we are in no-where, no city claims us. Anyhow, If you ever get out to the great NorthWest I guarantee you will love the area. Plenty to do and see in Seattle and surrounding communities. Always green, surrounded by majestic mountains and as many bodies of water as there are leaves on a tree.
I can't believe it, but I actually designed and built my own cedar log house! You can read all about the building with lots of pics, I've affectionately call it "The Spiderhollow". (Jan. 2003), House building: we are very close to submitting our floorplan and building plan for permitting. Hopefully we will be building by August when I have some time off from work to build the house. Check it out: "The Spiderhollow Project" (11/24/05) We Move Into the owner built Cedar Log house and christen it SpiderHollow.
|( 1998 - 06) I adopted a cute little1969 MGB-GT in '97 with the plan to sell it to make a couple bucks (I typically buy/fix & sell 3-6 cars a year and 2-4 motorcycles a year). However, after driving this British Sports car it sorta attached itself to me and now I can't seem to sell it! I really need to sell it sometime, 'cause I can't justify the extra vehicle nor another toy. Eventually I will put it back on the market, meantime - if you like British Sports cars here are some pretty good pictures I used in my abandoned efforts to sell it. MGB-GT What a FUN Happy car to drive. Well, I finally parted with the MGB during the construction of the Spiderhollow. I traded it for Carpentry help. Now my buddy Greg enjoys the finer virtues of this happy car.|
|(1998 ) Washington; Gotta Love the Ocean and Beaches around here. Heck, you can be soakin' sun and preparing live Dungeness Crab at Oceanside or Westport within a 3 hour drive. The beach is the place you can relax and rejuvenate the soul. I'm a champion sand dollar diver. This is when you hunt for the Smallest in tact Sand Dollar. So far the smallest has been 3/8ths of an inch. The big ones are a cinch to spot, but most folks never see these wee babes. I prefer to head down to Grays harbor for the sand dollars!|
|Together, Dulane and I
got involved with the environment and decided to do something. We now
drive diesel vehicles and I drive a diesel Mercedes Benz that runs on waste
fryer oil from local restaurants. Grease cars and garlic beer & building
Cedar Log Houses - I am Eccentric!
Again, there is a website all about these adventures at: Grease4Fuel.com
|We have taken a couple dancing classes, and although they are great fun, we still tend to move to our own music. The lessons were great, a little to structured for our nature but good to learn some moves. We try to go dancing whenever possible, trouble is these darn places don't start the music till after 9pm. I'm ready for bed by 10:30 ! The late start and the Smoke usually cuts our evenings short. So, where does dancing start earlier?|
( Josh-N-Katie 2001 ) My son Josh has worked diligently with both Pro and hobby Race cars since '93. Actually, he started rebuilding carburetors at 6 years old!. Here is a favorite prize old picture of Josh at 6, with me & Gizmo the dog face boy. His many seriously dedicated years have earned him a great reputation amongst the West Coast race enthusiasts. ( 2000)Josh has had the opportunity to race Formula Ford open wheel racers at both PIR and SIR (Now known as Pacific Raceway). He further sharpening his professional racecar development experience with Pete Lovely Racing. From there he spent some time with Mercedes Benz and then he landed a position with Ferrari. The person most responsible for Josh's racetrack enthusiasm is his amazing Cousin Jack Scher from BlackJack Racing. Jack Scher is an intriguing person, one to learn, laugh, an drink the blood of life with. He is a veteran race car driver, mechanic and local racing icon. When it comes to open wheel track racing he is a presence to be acknowledged. My son Josh and wife Katie now have 3 children whom I adore.
In 1999 with the stock market crash and
associated economic downturns the iDEAS business is still alive, but suffered the loss of
many clients. In '97 I went to work part time as a software instructor and
that job has helped sustain the ideas and put food on the table. 9/11
really hurt the Ideas business, which continued it's downward spiral.
currently (2009), 10 years
since the downturn started and now the ultimate economic downturn, iDEAS is
barely doing any business at all. I have enough business to keep a little cash flow going, but
it is only enough to be considered "a hobby business". I have been
teaching software for Ramco Training since '97 and continue working for them
about 3 days a week. Those 2 jobs is how I make my living. I make
very little income. (Ha, I should have sold this business like the
others after all !!)
Since I work part time with Ramco, and I own the iDEAS business - I have no company health insurance and no retirement program. I have tried to set some plans into motion and have developed some retirement investment but lost most of it in the stock market doom and gloom. Still, I am enjoying my life very much in the NOW and the retirement part is just a glowing ember in my future. Hum, at 50+yrs old, retirement future is just around the corner! I could be in trouble L
iDEAS still moping
along, not much biz. Still enjoy being a software
instructor, still having great adventures on
motorcycles & I built a reverse trike
called Spit Fire. Heavily involved
and WVO for fueling Diesel vehicles at the
Grease4Fuel website. The economy has me only working about 1 or
2 days a week teaching software and half that much work for iDEAS. I make
just enough to pay the bills. Damn, NOW would be the perfect time to
Retire, maybe do a motorcycle trip across the country or something, but now that
I have all the time off - I am afraid to spend the money!
(Picture taken outside of Dee's Cob Cottage we built out of 100% sustainable material - by hand).
So, Dee and I have really been enjoying the little paradise we have right here at the SpiderHollow cedar house. We work on the gardens, the landscape, and just enjoy what is here. We have 2 dogs, 1 cat, 6 goldfish and 1 acre of growth to maintain. There are grease cars and motorcycles for me to tinker on, and always stuff to build or projects to keep us both busy. We do visit family & grandkids allot, and take quick trips in a grease car or motorcycle for some adventure, but mostly - it is just so lovely right here that there is little desire to run away. That is a nice thing.
Come Visit - Ya Hear!