Tuesday, December 15, 2009

If you could do anything you want and couldn't fail...

what would you do?

What kind of a stupid question is that? I hate that question! I hate it more now, because I am posing it to myself in an effort to get the work life moving again.

Then there is this quote: "There's no scarcity of opportunity to make a living at what you love. There's only a scarcity of resolve to make it happen."

So I have been given this unique opportunity to create what I want to do with my life. Being laid off in a really crappy economy does that for you. 2010 is right around the corner and I would like to have a plan laid out for the year. But I am finding ways to hold myself back. A lot of it has to do with fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of disappointing "people", fear of disappointing myself, fear of failure, fear of succeeding. Some of it has to do with heavily ingrained beliefs of what "work" is. Work is something you do in an office, with a boss and a big salary and benefits. Oh, and work isn't necessarily fun. I need to really make a paradigm shift in my thinking (how was that for my use of corporate jargon?)

I also feel like I need to have all the details figured out before I make that first step. The reality of the situation is that if I have all the details worked out, the fun and most interesting parts go out the window. And what if someone thinks this whole idea is dumb? Truth is that someone out there will always think an idea is dumb, like every other idea out there.

In a nutshell here is my idea. I want to travel to endurance events around the country and write feature articles about the people around them. Some I might participate in, some I might just spectate at, but at each I would embed myself with some group of weirdos (basically I am thinking of you, my faithful and misguided reader) and report on the hijinks that ensue. Or don't. Sometimes when nothing happens that can be entertaining, too. You know, in an uncomfortable kind way.

I am not talking about marathons or triathlons, although I am not completely excluding them either. I am talking about events that you might read about in Obscure Sports Quarterly or you might see on ESPN 8: The Ocho (or late at night on Versus.) Events like Muddy Buddy (there is one in Minneapolis in 2010,) Hood to Coast, Ragnar, HURT 100, 24 hours of whatever - see, the lack of detail is what makes it kind of fun. (Suggestions are welcome.)

My premise is that the most colorful and entertaining kinds of lunatics tend to participate and/or follow these ridiculous events. And who doesn't like reading about lunatics. I know I do.

If nothing else I will get some great blog fodder, meet some fun, funny (potentially disturbed and scary) people. And get out of the house once in awhile for the next year.

Even as I write this I am thinking of all sorts of potential hurdles, potholes, dead ends, arguments against, etc. But here's the thing, it would be better than what I am doing now, right?

13 comments:

Molly said...

I like reading about lunatics. I think it would provide lots of entertainment and since you're a good writer be very cool to read.

Mary said...

Why the FUCK not? If you fail, you fail having fun. If you succeed, you succeed and you have conquered a major hurdle.

You can't do either of those things if you don't try.

Steve said...

I don't know how something like that would sell, I'll let others figure that out.

If you put effort into writing an entertaining account of probably anything, I think you would do great. I think people like reading funny stuff, and I think you are funny.

My guess is everyone who reads your blog thinks you are funny. If you want to write funny articles, then that is right up your alley.

MM said...

I think it's a great idea. In 1979 or 1980 SI did a piece on IM. It was obscure then. Obviously enough people read it then, so why not expand to what's obscure now. If you want to start with HURT 100, you can crash on my futon. I live 2 miles from the race.

I think it would be a great way to travel and see the races while working. You could start writing pieces on examiner.com I think you get paid by the click, so post the clicks to your blog/facebook and start a following.

kerrie said...

what mary said x2.
why not get paid to do something you like?

Tawnee said...

That's a great idea, in fact, I've had that same idea! No joke! But, I'm personally not at a stage where I can tackle that sort of project... if you can - I say go for it!

Woodsy said...

I agree that you have a talent for writing. Your blog is hilarious! Definitely put Portland on your list as we've got all kinds of crazy stuff going on. A lot of it involves mud, especially around this time of year :)

Question Authority. said...

I will be your trusty photographer, who knows not how to use her f/stop and fucking aperture settings.

Roo said...

Yes.

Beth said...

Oh what a great idea!!! You are hilarious so who better to hang out with funny characters and then write about it?? Seriously - go for it! And I know it's easy for "us" to say go for it as we sit back and just watch, but I would be truly, truly surprised if you regret "going for it"...regardless of the outcome.

NJ said...

You have a great "voice" so I'm sure you could build a following. How you make money at it if you're doing it on your own (vs. employed with an expense account for travel)...I don't know. You may have to have a more detailed website where you sell advertising to sporting companies. Maybe you could get paid by certain ones to throw in a good review on their products and for linking to their product when someone you write about mentions it. You could even court a few major publications to be an online blog contributor - even Page Six and the Observer branch out on their content to draw more people to their site.

The sky is the limit, Todd and if you have a dream you need to follow it! Yeah, maybe you'll have to find something else to do part time until you're up and running a bit more. Who cares if someone wants to judge your idea negatively, the only ones that matter in this scenario are you and A. Don't sit by and wait for someone else to snatch up this idea...GO FOR IT.

Charisa said...

Excellent Idea. Sell it! I bet you could think of a ton of publications to pick you up - Competitor Magazine, all the big guys, Runners World, the list is endless - go for it! You are funny, people would love reading your stuff!

Susietri said...

Crazy is always relative and I love reading about people more whacked than me.